September 13, 2021

Chairs Takano, Tester, Wasserman Schultz, & Heinrich Applaud Successful Committee Passage of the Build Back Better Agenda

Proposal will provide $18 Billion to update VA’s aging infrastructure

Press Contact

Jenni Geurink (Takano) | 202.819.4684

Olya Voytovich (Tester) | 202.224.2868

David Damron (Wasserman Schultz) |202.225.7931

Whitney Potter (Heinrich) | 202.2281578

Washington, DC. – Today the House Committee on Veterans’ Affairs, under the leadership of Chairman Mark Takano (D-Calif.), successfully passed legislative proposals to comply with the reconciliation directive included in section 2002 of the Concurrent Resolution on the Budget for Fiscal Year 2022, S. Con. Res. 14 through the Committee. As part of President Biden’s Build Back Better agenda, this measure includes $18 billion to invest in VA’s aging infrastructure, its workforce, and the support structures that serve our nation’s veterans and is the direct result of cooperation between House and Senate Committee on Veterans’ Affairs Chairmen Mark Takano and Jon Tester and House and Senate Appropriations Subcommittee on Military Construction and Veterans Affairs Chairs Debbie Wasserman Schultz and Martin Heinrich. Read their full statements on the successful markup below. 


“For too long, chronic underfunding has forced VA to try to deliver 21st century healthcare in buildings designed to serve veterans who fought in World Wars I and II—that’s unacceptable and today, our Committee took a bold step to update VA’s aging infrastructure,” said Chairman Takano “By passing President Biden’s Build Back agenda during today’s markup, we are following through on the promises we’ve made to our veterans by investing in the aging infrastructure designed to provide them high quality care and benefits. Nearly three fourths of Americans agree that it’s time to update VA’s infrastructure, and I’m grateful for the tireless work of my staff and that of Chairs Tester, Wasserman Schultz, and Heinrich who put that idea into reality. I look forward to working with Senator Tester to pass this legislation through the Senate and send it to President Biden’s desk.”


“The need for action is clearer than ever, as years of sporadic, one-off cash infusions from Administrations of both parties have left many VA facilities underfunded and ill-equipped to meet the growing health care needs of our nation’s veterans,” said Chairman Tester. “Following today’s markup, we’re one step closer to providing historic investments in VA infrastructure that’ll allow the Department to better serve veterans at state-of-the-art facilities across the country. I thank Committee Chairs Takano, Wasserman Schultz, and Heinrich for working with me to deliver this framework, and will keep pushing until we’re able to provide veterans with the top-notch services and care they’ve earned, well into the future.” 


“We can never fully Build Back Better unless we modernize our critical VA infrastructure to meet the needs of all our Veterans and VA workforce, and with the strong leadership of Chairs Takano, Tester and Heinrich, we are accomplishing that urgent mission,” said Chair Wasserman Schultz. “There’s still more heavy lifting to do, but I’m eager to work with my Senate colleagues to swiftly move this legislation to President Biden.” 


“Our veterans deserve more than just words of gratitude for their years of sacrifice while serving this country in uniform. They deserve the quality care and benefits they have earned,” said Chair Heinrich. “That’s why I’m proud of the major investments that my Democratic colleagues in the House and Senate are securing in the Build Back Better agenda. This funding will ensure that the VA has the infrastructure it needs to keep America's promise to our current and next generation of veterans and their families for years to come.”