Wicker Statement on Year-End Funding Bill

Every Day Under Continuing Resolution Destroys Readiness, Costs Military Millions Year-End Bill Also Includes $600M for Jackson Water Improvements

December 20, 2022

WASHINGTON – U.S. Senator Roger Wicker, R-Miss., a senior member of the Senate Armed Services Committee, today declared his intent to vote in favor of a year-end funding agreement. The proposed bill would fully fund the nation’s military and avoid a continuing resolution (CR) that would shortchange defense spending. Senator Wicker has been a longstanding opponent of CRs, citing their costly impact on national security.

“The harsh reality is that, as China and Russia build up their militaries, the U.S. will not be prepared to prevent warfare unless we make the right investments in our national defense,” Wicker said. “Every day we operate under a continuing resolution destroys our military readiness and deterrence and costs our service members hundreds of millions in lost capacity and overruns. This legislation fully funds our National Defense Authorization Act while cutting the President’s proposed increase in domestic spending by 50%. It represents the best possible opportunity to end this budget stalemate, avoid a CR, and get our military men and women the resources they need to win.”


The year-end funding agreement includes all of Senate Republicans’ top demands, forcing Democrats to leave out many liberal “poison pill” proposals and to abandon calls for parity in increases for defense and non-defense spending. The result is an agreement that boosts defense funding by 10% over the previous fiscal year, while cutting domestic spending relative to inflation. The final increase for domestic spending is 50% below the President’s budget request. The legislation also preserves longstanding federal agreements supported by conservatives, including a federal prohibition on funding abortion.

The CR that passed in September and is currently funding the federal government has already cost the Pentagon more than $12 billion in purchasing power relative to this year’s National Defense Authorization Act. That amount could fund two Arleigh-Burke destroyers and the Department of Defense’s entire R&D budget for a new generation of long-range weapons. A full-year CR would cost the military almost $80 billion in lost purchasing power. Even a short-term CR would cost the military as much as $207 million per day.

Top officials at the Department of Defense have repeatedly warned about the enormous damage that operating off an extended CR would do to military readiness. A continuing resolution “continues” funding the government at levels that were set in the year prior. Continuing resolutions also delay the start of important construction and acquisition projects that require Congressional approval. This ban on “new starts” drives up costs for shipbuilders and other manufacturers that depend on carefully-timed purchases to minimize cost and keep their skilled workforce employed.

The year-end funding agreement would fully fund the FY2023 NDAA, which Wicker praised last week for superseding the President’s paltry budget request by $45 billion. Among other provisions, the FY23 NDAA and year-end funding agreement would boost service member pay by 4.6 percent and fund a major boost for Navy shipbuilding programming. Read more about the bill here.

The year-end funding agreement also includes $600 million in emergency funding for water infrastructure projects in Mississippi’s capital city, which would be administered by a third-party manager appointed by the EPA. In November, the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Mississippi approved a Proposed Stipulated Order assigning an Interim Third-Party Manager to oversee the City of Jackson’s water system, including any federal grants or loans received. This funding would be in addition to two other allocations for Jackson’s water and wastewater infrastructure, bringing the total appropriation for Jackson to $607.6 million for FY23. Beyond Jackson, the year-end funding bill also supports a range of Mississippi infrastructure priorities across the state, including water, wastewater, road, bridge, and internet projects, which Senator Wicker has repeatedly endorsed.