CAPAC Chair Statement on Omnibus Spending Bill

Mar 10, 2022 Issues: Economic Development, Education, Healthcare, Housing, Native Hawaiian and Pacific Islander Task Force

Washington, D.C. —  The House of Representatives today passed H.R. 2741, the Consolidated Appropriations Act, which provides $1.5 trillion to fund the Federal government through fiscal year 2022. Congressional Asian Pacific Caucus (CAPAC) Chair Rep. Judy Chu (CA-27) issued the following statement:

“From a record spike in anti-Asian hate crimes to the disproportionate impact that the coronavirus had on Asian Americans, Native Hawaiians, and Pacific Islanders, this past year has presented a number of historic challenges for our communities. That is why I am so pleased that this omnibus funding bill will help us to meet more of these urgent needs.

“It is especially significant that, just days before the anniversary of the shootings at three Asian-owned spas in Georgia, this bill provides $5 million to fund the Jabara-Heyer NO HATE Act, which I was proud to introduce along with Rep. Don Beyer. This funding will go towards helping law enforcement better respond to and track hate crimes, and make more victims comfortable with reporting. Additionally, it includes $5 million in grants to support community-based approaches to help reduce hate crimes through conflict resolution and community empowerment. But there cannot be an end to hate without better understanding, which is why it is so important that this bill includes $2.52 million for initiatives to promote the teaching of Asian American and Pacific Islander history.

“And I’m pleased that it helps to meet the needs of communities that have been hardest hit by the pandemic. For instance, this bill will expand housing options and improve living conditions for tribal communities, including an addition $22.3 million for the Native Hawaiian Housing Block Grant program, which is more than we requested. And it includes $22 million for the Native Hawaiian Health Care Program, an increase of $1.5 million from last year. Additionally, the funding for the Office of Minority Health Language Access will be crucial for serving the one third of AAPIs who are limited English proficient.  

“We must also look towards the economic recovery to make sure that all communities are included, which is why I am so pleased that this bill includes $55 million for the Minority Business Development Agency, an increase from last year. And it specifically provides $3 million for MBDA grants to Tribes and American Indian, Alaska Native, and Native Hawaiian populations to address barriers to economic development. I’m especially happy that funding for Asian American Native and Pacific Islander Serving Institutions (AANAPISI) more than doubled from FY21 to almost $11 million!

“I am disappointed that not all of our priorities were included, and that we could not reach a deal to include needed COVID-19 relief, but I am proud that we were able to meet so many needs while helping more AAPIs bounce back from these difficult two years.”