Congressman Culberson Chairs First Week of CJS Budget Hearings

It has been a busy start to the fiscal year 2017 appropriations process. So far this year, my colleagues and I on the committee have held 29 budget and oversight hearings. Last week, I chaired the first of the House Appropriations Subcommittee on Commerce, Justice, Science, and Related Agencies fiscal year 2017 budget hearings.

On Tuesday, the Secretary of Commerce testified about the Department of Commerce’s FY17 budget request. I opened the hearing outlining my serious concerns with the president’s proposed budget for the department. The president’s budget includes more than $2 billion in new mandatory spending. Frankly, this spending is full of gimmicks including a $10 a barrel tax on oil. You can listen to my remarks here.

On Wednesday, Attorney General Loretta Lynch testified before the committee about the Department of Justice’s FY17 budget request. This was the Attorney General’s first appearance before the committee and came the day after the President announced his newest proposal to close the military facility at Guantanamo Bay. My first question to the Attorney General was about the president’s proposal to relocate Guantanamo Bay terrorist detainees to American soil despite provisions in current law prohibiting it. You can listen to my question and the Attorney General’s response here.

As the new Chairman of the House Appropriations Subcommittee on Commerce, Justice, Science, and Related Agencies, I’ve been putting pressure on the administration to cut off funding for sanctuary cities. During Wednesday’s hearing, the Attorney General announced that the Bureau of Prisons (BOP) has implemented a new immigration detainer policy, and that the DOJ has begun a new policy regarding grant requests. These new policies will help to prevent the release of criminal illegal aliens into the custody of sanctuary cities, and were put in place because of the pressure I’ve been putting on the administration. You can watch a clip of me questioning Attorney General Lynch here. On Fox News, Bill O’Reilly and Martha McCallum discussed the success I have had in pressuring the Obama Administration to enforce the law against sanctuary cities.

On Thursday, James Comey, Director, Federal Bureau of Investigation testified before the committee about the FBI’s FY17 budget request. During this hearing, I discussed the importance of cybersecurity with Director Comey and asked him about the progress that the FBI is making in implementing the language I included in last year’s appropriations bill to review the supply chain for information technology equipment purchased and used by other agencies. Director Comey shared with the other committee members some of the reasons why protecting against attacks from foreign nations is so important and outlined the progress the FBI is making in implementing the new directive included in last year’s bill. You can listen to my question and Director Comey’s response here.

As Chairman of the Commerce, Justice and Science Appropriations Subcommittee, I have the authority and the duty to ensure that our hard-earned tax dollars are spent to enforce the law as written by Congress. Every federal agency under my jurisdiction must enforce the law if they expect to earn the privilege of spending the hard-earned tax dollars of the American people. The committee will continue with additional budget and oversight hearings this week. The upcoming schedule can be found at

It is an honor and a privilege to represent you and Texas in the United States Congress.


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