Senator Collins, a senior member of the Appropriations Committee, successfully secures important provisions for Maine in bipartisan Senate bill
WASHINGTON, D.C.—Following successful advocacy by U.S. Senator Susan Collins, the Senate Appropriations Committee has approved important funding for Maine’s veterans and the Portsmouth Naval Shipyard (PNSY) in Kittery, Maine. The Committee also approved a two-year extension of the Access Received Closer to Home (ARCH) program. Senator Collins is a senior member of the Appropriations Committee and Military Construction and Veterans Affairs Appropriations Subcommittee.
The provisions were approved during the Committee’s consideration of the fiscal year 2017 Military Construction and Veterans Affairs spending bill that provides resources for veterans’ benefits and programs and makes funding available for military construction projects. Senator Collins voted in favor of the bill, which was approved unanimously and now awaits final consideration by the full Senate.
“The vital programs funded by this bipartisan legislation are essential to ensuring that our veterans in Maine and across the country receive the benefits that they have earned through their service. This bill takes an important step toward honoring our commitments to them. I am particularly pleased that the bill includes a two-year extension of the successful ARCH program that has made such a difference for our Northern Maine veterans. Without congressional action, this program would have expired in August,” said Senator Collins. The legislation also funds military construction projects at PNSY that will update several facilities and enhance the safety and efficiency of the shipyard, which performs vital nuclear submarine maintenance.”
The provisions for Maine veterans approved by the Appropriations Committee and supported by Senator Collins include:
- Two-year extension of the ARCH Program, a vital, successful, and cost-effective program that provides critical health care to Northern Maine veterans close to home.
- $6.9 million in funding for the Portland Community-Based Outpatient Clinic (CBOC) to lease a new facility and improve veterans’ access to primary care, mental health care, and specialty care services.
The three projects for PNSY approved by the Appropriations Committee and supported by Senator Collins include:
- $17.8 million for the consolidation of unaccompanied housing.
- $30.1 million for utility improvements for nuclear platforms.
- $27 million to construct a replacement medical/dental clinic.