The 2018 Government Funding Law (the “Omnibus”)

The in-progress outline of the 2,232 government funding law for 2018 that was signed on March 23, 2018.

H.R. 1625: Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2018


DIVISION A – Agriculture, Rural Development, Food and Drug Administration, and Related Agencies

Agriculture, Rural Development, FDA, and Related Agencies Explanatory Statement


DIVISION B – Commerce, Justice, Science, and Related Agencies

Commerce, Justice, Science, and Related Agencies Explanatory Statement

Sec. 521: Money appropriated by this Act for intelligence activities are “deemed to be specifically authorized by Congress “during fiscal year 2018 until the enactment of the Intelligence Authorization Act for fiscal year 2018”.

Sec. 537: “None of the funds made available under this Act to the Department of Justice may be used, with respect to any of the States of Alabama, Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Hawaii, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Vermont, Virginia, Washington, West Virginia, Wisconsin, and Wyoming, or with respect to the District of Columbia, Guam, or Puerto Rico, to prevent any of them from implementing their own laws that authorize the use, distribution, possession, or cultivation of medical marijuana.”


DIVISION C – Department of Defense

Sec. 8018: Prohibits the Department of Defense from disposing of M-1 Carbine rifles, M-1 Garand rifles, M-14 rifles, .22 caliber rifles, .30 caliber rifles, or M-1911 pistols or to destroy ammunition that is allowed to be commercially sold.

Sec. 8071: Over $705 million will be spent on missile defense for Israel, with requirements that $420 million of that be shared with U.S. war equipment manufacturers, including at least $120 million to be shared with Boeing for the Arrow 3 Upper Tier system.

Sec. 8073: Money appropriated by this Act for intelligence activities are “deemed to be specifically authorized by the Congress” during fiscal year 2018 until the enactment of the Intelligence Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2018.

Sec. 8107: Allows local military commanders – if the Defense Secretary creates regulations allowing it – to provide payments to people for damage, injuries, and deaths caused by the Armed Forces.

Sec. 8115:: Prohibits the Defense Department from initiating or expanding support to foreign forces, irregular forces, groups, or individuals without informing Congress 15 days in advance, but the Defense Secretary can waive this and tell Congress within 72 hours.

Sec. 8119: Military and civilian employees of the Defense Department can’t use their Government Travel Charge Card on gambling or strippers.

AFGHANISTAN SECURITY FORCES FUND

  • $4.666 billion will be provided to the “security forces of Afghanistan, including the provision of equipment, supplies, services, training, facility and infrastructure repair, renovation, construction, and funding.”

COUNTER-ISIS TRAIN AND EQUIP FUND

  • $1.769 billion will be provided for “assistance, including training; equipment; logistics support, supplies, and services; stipends; infrastructure repair and renovation; and sustainment, to foreign security forces, irregular forces, groups, or individuals participating, or preparing to participate in activities to counter the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria, and their affiliated or associated groups”
  • The money can also be used to “enhance the border security of nations adjacent to conflict areas including Jordan, Lebanon, Egypt, and Tunisia.”

Sec. 9007: Prohibits the US Government from creating any permanent military bases in Iraq or Afghanistan or from exercising “United States control over any oil resource of Iraq.”

Sec. 9011: Allows $500 million to be given to Jordan “to support the armed forces of Jordan and to enhance security along its borders.”

Sec. 9013: Provides $200 million for the Ukraine Security Assistance Initiative to “provide assistance , including training; equipment; lethal weapons of a defensive nature; logistics support, supplies and services; sustainment; and intelligence support to the military and national security forces of Ukraine, and for replacement of any weapons or defensive articles provided to the Government of Ukraine from the inventory of the United States”

Sec. 9022: Allows the money in the Afghanistan Security Forces fund to be used to provide training, equipment, and “other assistance” that is otherwise illegal because the Defense Secretary knows the unit has committed a gross violation of human rights. This is allowed as long as the Defense Secretary notifies Congress within 30 days.

Defense Explanatory Statement


DIVISION D – Energy and Water Development and Related Agencies

Sec. 108: Prohibits permits from being required for the release of dredged or mill material from farming, ranching, construction and maintenance of dikes, dams, levees, and “transportation structures”, construction or maintenance of farm or stock ponds or irrigation ditches, construction of farm roads or forest roads, or for temporary roads for moving mining equipment.

Sec. 302:: Money appropriated for intelligence “by this or any other Act” are “deemed to be specifically authorized by the Congress” for “intelligence or intelligence-related activity for the rest of fiscal year 2018 (until September 30, 2018) or until the enactment of the Intelligence Authorization Act for fiscal year 2018.

Sec. 306: Prohibits the Secretary of Energy from creating any new regional petroleum reserve unless the “reserve is explicitly requested in advance in an annual budget submission and approved by the Congress in an appropriations Act.”

Sec. 309: Allows money to be used for the construction of the 99-D-143 Mixed Oxide Fuel Fabrication Facility in South Carolina.

Sec. 311: Allows the Secretary of Energy to sell oil from the Strategic Petroleum Reserve if the President determines that a regional supply shortage exists and there will be severe increase in the price of oil.

Energy and Water Development and Related Agencies Explanatory Statement

Funding Levels by Energy Type

  • Geothermal Energy: $80 million
  • Wind Energy: $92 million
  • Water Power: $105 million
  • Solar Energy: $241 million

Total Renewable Energy = $2.3 billion (Trump administration requested only $636 million)

Fossil Fuel Energy

  • Unconventional fossil fuels: $40 million
  • Natural Gas: $50 million
  • Coal: $481 million
  • Fossil Fuels: $726 million

Nuclear Energy: Over $1.2 billion


DIVISION E – Financial Services and General Government

Financial Services and General Government Explanatory Statement

Sec. 121: Money appropriated by this Act for intelligence activities are “deemed to be specifically authorized by the Congress” during fiscal year 2018 until the enactment of the Intelligence Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2018.


DIVISION F – Department of Homeland Security

Department of Homeland Security Explanatory Statement

Sec. 506: Money appropriated by this Act for intelligence activities are “deemed to be specifically authorized by the Congress” during fiscal year 2018 until the enactment of the Intelligence Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2018.


DIVISION G – Department of the Interior, Environment, and Related Agencies

Sec. 113: Allows the Secretary of the Interior to remove wild horses and burros from public land and transfer them to other governmental agencies to be used a work animals.

Sec. 120: Prohibits the Secretary of the Interior from protecting the sage grouse using the Endangered Species Act

Sec. 121: Enacts several provisions and full bills into law, including a bill that renames the White Clouds Wilderness in Idaho after Cecil D. Andrus.

Sec. 416: Prohibits money from this or “any other Act” from being used to implement any regulation requiring permits for livestock producers to emit carbon dioxide, nitrous oxide, water vapor, or methane.

Sec. 417: Prohibits money from being used to implement any regulation requiring mandatory reporting of greenhouse gas emissions from manure management systems.

Sec. 418: Prohibits money from being used to regulate the lead content of ammunition or fishing tackle.

Sec. 432: Prohibits permits from being required for the release of dredged or mill material from farming, ranching, construction and maintenance of dikes, dams, levees, and “transportation structures”, construction or maintenance of farm or stock ponds or irrigation ditches, construction of farm roads or forest roads, or for temporary roads for moving mining equipment (this provision was also in Division D: Energy and Water)

Department of the Interior, Environment, and Related Agencies Explanatory Statement


DIVISION H – Departments of Labor, Health, and Human Services, and Education

Departments of Labor, Health, and Human Services, and Education Explanatory Statement


DIVISION I – Legislative Branch

Legislative Branch Explanatory Statement


DIVISION J – Military Construction, Veterans Affairs

Military Construction, Veterans Affairs Explanatory Statement

  • Trump requested $254 million for a Presidential Aircraft Recap Complex; Congress only gave him half ($124,884,000).

DIVISION K – Department of State, Foreign Operations, and Related Programs

TITLE I: ADMINISTRATION OF FOREIGN AFFAIRS

Contributions for International Peacekeeping

Provides approx. $415 million for United Nations international peacekeeping activities, which can be withdrawn if the Secretary of State says “United States manufacturers and are not being given opportunities to provide equipment, services, and material for United Nations peacekeeping activities equal to those being given to foreign manufacturers and suppliers”

  • Allows US Armed Forces to be put under the operational control of a “foreign national” if “the President’s military advisors” submit “a recommendation” to the President, who then sends “a recommendation” to Congress.

The total for International Peacekeeping Activities is the approx. $415 million listed above plus approx. $967 million from the War on Terror account

  • This is enough money for US contributions to peacekeeping missions “at the statutory level of 25 percent”

Broadcasting Board of Governors

Provides approx. $800 million for “grants for radio, Internet, and television broadcasting to the Middle East.
– Allows the Broadcasting Board of Governors to use up to $1 million “in receipts from privatization efforts of the Voice of America and the International Broadcasting Bureau”

National Endowment of Democracy

Provides $170 million to the National Endowment for Democracy, $117.5 million which “shall be allocated in the traditional and customary manner” and $52.5 million “shall be for democracy programs”

TITLE II: UNITED STATES AGENCY FOR INTERNATIONAL DEVELOPMENT (USAID)

Provides approx. $1.2 billion for operating expenses plus an additional $158 million from the War on Terror account.

Provides $197 million for the Capital Investment Fund, which is for “expenses for overseas construction and related costs” and for buying information technology.

TITLE III: BILATERAL ECONOMIC ASSISTANCE

Global Health Programs

Provides approx. $8.7 billion for global health programs, with the largest chunk of approx. $5.7 billion going towards the prevention, treatment, and research into HIV/AIDS.

  • $1.3 billion of that money will be the United States contribution to the Global Fund to Fight AIDS

International Disaster Assistance

Provides approx. $2.7 billion for International Disaster Assistance plus an additional approx. $1.6 billion from the War on Terror funding.

Provides $30 million plus $62 million from War on Terror funding for the Office of Transition Initiatives “to support transition to democracy and long-term development of countries in crisis.”

Complex Crises Fund

Provides $10 million that does not expire and $20 million from the War on Terror funding “to support programs and activities to prevent or respond to emerging or unforeseen foreign challenges and complex crises overseas”

  • Says “no funds shall be made available for lethal assistance or to respond to natural disasters”
  • The money can be provided “notwithstanding any other provision of law” except a provision that prevents funding for the governments of Cuba, North Korea, Iran, or Syria, a provision cutting off funding from any government whose leader was overthrown via military coup AFTER the enactment of this law, a provision that prevents payments for abortions, and an easy-to-get-around provision preventing funding for security forces that commit human right abuses.

Development Credit Authority

Allows $1.75 billion of loan guarantees, with a cap of $300 million per country.

Economic Support Fund

Provides over $1.8 billion in funding that expires on September 30, 2019 plus over $2.1 bill from the War on Terror fund.

Democracy Fund

Provides over $215 million “for the promotion of democracy globally” and some of this money can be transferred to the National Endowment for Democracy.

Assistance for Europe, Eurasia, and Central Asia

Provides over $750 million “which shall be available notwithstanding any other provision of law” except for a provision that prevents funding for the Russian government as long as they control Crimea.

Millenium Challenge Corporation

Provides $905 million

United States African Development Foundation

Provides $30 million

TITLE IV: INTERNATIONAL SECURITY ASSISTANCE

International Narcotics Control and Law Enforcement

Provides over $950 million and almost $418 million from the OCO account for the Drug War.

  • Allows the Secretary of State to hand out “excess property” from “an agency” to “a foreign country or international organization” and do so “without regard” to legal restrictions.
  • Waives the restriction from section 482(b) of the Foreign Assistance Act of 1961 that says that the funds for International Narcotics Control “shall not be made available for the procurement of weapons or ammunition.”

Peacekeeping Operations

Provides over $212 million and over $325 million from the OCO account for Peacekeeping Operations

International Military Education and Training

Provides over $110 million, which can be used to provide military education and training to “civilians who are not members of a government”

Foreign Military Financing Program

Provides over $5.6 billion and $460 million from the OCO account.

  • $3.1 billion is for Israel, with over $815 million of that required to be used for weapons and war services

TITLE V: MULTILATERAL ASSISTANCE

Contribution to the International Development Association

Provides over $1 billion for the World Bank’s “soft loan” window, which lends at concessional rates to low-income countries.

Contribution to the African Development Fund

Provides over $171 million

TITLE VII: GENERAL PROVISIONS

Sec. 7008: Prohibits funding for any assistance for a government whose elected head is removed via military coup d’etat AFTER the enactment of this law, but assistance can resume once the Secretary of State certifies that a “democratically elected government has taken office.”

Sec. 7016: Requires the Department of Defense to notify Congress before providing excess articles according to the Foreign Assistance Act of 1961

Sec. 7021: Prohibits lethal military equipment from being given to a country that supports international terrorism but the President can allow lethal equipment to be given if “if the President determines that to do so is important to the national interest of the United States”

Sec. 7034: Allows money from two funds to be provided for loan guarantees for Egypt, Jordan, Iraq, Tunisia, and Ukraine and this money will not count as “assistance” in regards to laws limiting assistance to these countries.

  • Allows, but doesn’t require, money from the Economic Support Fund to be used to create and operate “enterprise funds” for Egypt, Jordan, and Tunisia.

Sec. 7035:: A sense of Congress that the “Arab League boycott” of Israel and of American firms that do business in Israel is “an impediment to peace” and “should be immediately and publicly terminated”. It says that a country’s participation in the boycott should be taken into consideration when determining whether to sell weapons to that country. The Executive Branch is ordered to take steps “to encourage allies and trading partners of the United States to enact laws prohibiting businesses from complying with the boycott and penalizing businesses that do comply.”

Sec. 7041

Syria:

  • Allows money from the Economic Support Fund, the International Narcotics Control and Law Enforcement fund and the Peacekeeping Operations fund to be used for “non-lethal assistance” for programs to “establish local governance in Syria”, “develop and implement political processes”, “further the legitimacy and viability of the Syrian opposition, including local government structures in Syria”, and “promote stability and economic development in Syria.”
    • The Explanatory Statement says that these funds are “for programs in areas not controlled by the Government of Syria.”

Egypt:

  • Allows $112 million from the Economic Support Fund to be used for assistance for Egypt, which is only allowed if the Secretary of State certifies that “the Government of Egypt is taking consistent and effective steps to stabilize the economy and implement market-based economic reforms”.
  • An additional $1.3 billion from the Foreign Military Financing Program may be provided to Egypt

Jordan:

  • Provides $1.525 billion, over $1 billion of that coming from the Economic Support Fund and $425 million from the Foreign Military Financing Program.

Tunisia:

West Bank and Gaza

  • Allows money from the Economic Support Fund to be used for assistance to the West Bank and Gaza only after the Secretary of State reports to Congress that the money is to advance peace, address humanitarian needs, and “promote a private sector economy”, however the money is not allowed to be transferred if the Palestinians initiate an International Criminal Court investigation that “subjects Israeli nationals to an investigation for alleged crimes against Palestinians” (a restriction that can be waived by the Secretary of State for a maximum of one year)

Sec. 7042: Africa

  • Makes funds available from the “International Military Education and Training” fund for Cameroon, Chad, Niger, Nigeria, Central African Republic, and Ethiopia
  • “Development Assistance” funds – at least $56 million – will be given to Malawi
  • Funds for South Sudan will be available when the Secretary of State certifies that the government is negotiating for a political settlement to end the conflict, establish democratic institutions, and “reduce corruption related to the extraction and sale of oil and gas”. No funds are allowed to go to the Government of Sudan.

Sec. 7043: East Asia and the Pacific

  • Allows funding for Burma, North Korea, Philippines, Tibet, India, Nepal, and Vietnam.

Sec. 7046: South and Central Asia

  • Provides money from the Economic Support Fund and Drug War fund for Afghanistan
  • Provides at least $420,700,000 for “assistance” for Ukraine
  • Allows Foreign Military Financing Program money to be spent on counterterrorism and counterinsurgency in Pakistan.
    • Withholds $33 million until Dr. Shakil Afridi is released from prison and cleared of all charges related to assistance he provided in finding Osama bin Laden.
  • Provides $35 million for “economic development and democracy programs” in Sri Lanka.

Sec. 7045: Latin America and the Caribbean

  • Provides $615 million to implement the United States Strategy for Engagement in Central America, which focuses heavily on El Salvador, Guatemala, and Honduras.
    • Withholds money from these three countries unless, among other things, they inform their citizens of the dangers of traveling to the southwest border of the United States and helps the US deport migrants.
  • Provides over $391 million for Columbia, which includes efforts to conduct the Drug War
    • Prohibits the money from being used to compensate victims
  • Requires that at least $15 million be spent “to promote democracy and the rule of law in Venezuela”

The Explanatory Statement says the following countries will get money from the International Military Education and Training Fund and Foreign Military Financing Program

  • Belize
  • Costa Rica
  • El Salvador
  • Guatemala
  • Honduras
  • Panama
  • Mexico

Sec. 7046: Europe and Eurasia

Georgia

Sec. 7048: Prohibits funding for the United Nations Human Rights Council unless the council is taking steps to remove Israel as a permanent agenda item.

Sec. 7060: Provides at least $800 million for basic eduction and $235 million for higher education in foreign countries. Also provides over $1 billion for food security and agricultural development and another $400 million for water and sanitation projects.

Sec. 7066:: “None of the funds made available in this Act may be used to support or justify the use of torture, cruel, or inhumane treatment by any official or contract employee of the United States Government.”

Sec. 7068: Allows financing to be provided to Israel, Egypt, NATO, and major non-NATO allies for leasing war equipment from “United States commercial suppliers” regardless of any other provisions of law.

Sec. 7070: Russia

  • No money can be given to the government of Russia or to implement any policy that recognizes Russia as the legal owners of Crimea. These limitations can be waived if Ukraine regains control over Crimea and other Russian controlled territory.
  • Prohibits funding for any country that recognizes the independence of or establishes diplomatic relations with the Russian occupied territories of Abkhazia and Tskhinvali Region/South Ossentia (a restriction the Secretary of State can waive)
  • Requires at least $250 million for the “Countering Russian Influence Fund”
    • Says “Funds appropriated by this Act and made available for assistance for the Eastern Partnership countries shall be made available to advance the implementation of Association Agreements and trade agreements with the European Union, and to reduce their vulnerability to external economic and political pressure from the Russian Federation.”
    • The money can also be used “to support democracy programs” and “rule of law strategy” within Russia

Sec. 7072: Allows up to $900 million for the Special Defense Acquisition Fund, which is controlled by the Department of Defense

Sec. 7083: Authorizes the United States Governor of the International Development Association to contribute over $3.2 billion to the Association and authorizes over $513 million more for the African Development Fund

TITLE VIII: OVERSEAS CONTINGENCY OPERATIONS/GLOBAL WAR ON TERRORISM

Department of State, Foreign Operations, and Related Programs Explanatory Statement

Orders a report on the progress of the Foreign Affairs Security Training Center project

Allows up to $20 million to be used for the Global Engagement Center, on top of money that can be transferred from the Department of Defense.

An additional $12 million is provided for “Countering State Disinformation and Pressure”, which can be used to “promote democracy” and “support exchanges” with countries in Europe and Eurasia.

Approx. $1.3 billion plus $96 million in War on Terror funding will be spent on Contributions to International Organizations


DIVISION L – Transportation, Housing and Urban Development

Transportation, Housing and Urban Development Explanatory Statement


DIVISION M – Extensions


DIVISION N – Build Act


DIVISION O – Wildfire Suppression Funding and Forest Management Activities Act


DIVISION P – Ray Baum’s Act of 2018


DIVISION Q – Kevin and Avonte’s Law


DIVISION R – TARGET Act

Sec. 3: Adds human trafficking to the definition of “transnational organized crime” in order to allow the State Department to pay snitches.

  • Current law allows the State Department to appropriate “such amounts as many be necessary”
  • Payments are capped at $25 million except as personally authorized by the Secretary of State. The cap is $50 million for information leading to the capture of a leader of a foreign terrorist organization.
  • Payments under $100,000 do not need approval from the Secretary of State.
  • The decisions made by the Secretary of States are final and can not be reviewed by the courts.
  • The original law from 1984 allowed payments capped at $500,000. Payments over $100,000 had to be approved by the President.

DIVISION S – Other Matters

Title V: Stop School Violence Act

Sec. 502: Provides grants to States, local governments, and Indian tribes to train school personnel and students to prevent school violence, develop and operate systems for anonymous reporting of threats (including apps, hotlines, and websites), placement of metal detectors, locks and lighting, and new technologies and “any other measure” that “may provide significant improvement in security”. Authorizes $75 million in funding for 2018 and $100 million per year from 2019-2028.

Title VI: Fix NICS ACT

Other Matters Explanatory Statement


DIVISION T – Revenue Provisions


DIVISION U – Tax Technical Corrections


DIVISION V – Cloud Act

Sec 103: Requires that providers of electronic communication services “preserve, backup, or disclose the contents of a wire or electronic communication” regardless of if that information is stored inside or outside of the United States.

  • Service providers can challenge the orders in court if they think the target is not a United States person and does not live in the United States and that the disclosure would break the law of a foreign government.

Sec. 104: It will be legal for electronic communication providers “to intercept or disclose the contents of a wire or electronic communication in response to an order from a foreign government”.

  • Electronic communications providers can not be sued in court for complying with these information requests.

Sec. 105: In order for information sharing to occur between the US Government and a foreign government, the countries must enter into an “Executive Agreement”

  • The Executive Agreement will be valid if the Attorney General submits a written certification to Congress that the country has, among other qualifications, “robust substantial and procedural protections for privacy and civil liberties” and is a party to the Convention on Cybercrime.
    • Determinations made by the Attorney General are not subject to judicial review.
    • The Executive Arrangement can not take effect until after 180 days after Congress is notified.
    • Congress can enact a joint resolution of disapproval to stop it.
  • An order issued by a foreign government has to identify a specific person, account, address, or personal device and the order must be for a fixed, limited duration. Orders by foreign governments are subject to review by our courts.