(Louisville, KY) - The remaining $410 million needed to start constructing Louisville's new Robley Rex VAMC has been secured.
Senator Mitch McConnell made the announcement Monday, saying President Trump helped him obtain the needed federal funds for the center's completion.
The Senator had already secured $450 million for the project back in 2008.
This year, Trump included full funding for the construction in his Fiscal Year 2020 budget request as McConnell had asked.
Senator McConnell Delivers Remaining Funding for Robley Rex VA Medical Center in Louisville
Majority Leader McConnell and President Trump fulfill promise to Kentucky veterans
WASHINGTON, D.C. -- U.S. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell(R-KY) announced today that he successfully secured the remaining $410 million needed for construction of the new Robley Rex Veterans Affairs Medical Center (VAMC) in Louisville, Kentucky, in the Fiscal Year 2020 government-funding agreement. Before the end of the year, both the House of Representatives and Senate are expected to approve the government funding bills, sending it to President Trump for his signature.
The project received a boost earlier this year, when President Trump – at Senator McConnell’s request --included full funding for construction of the new VAMC facility in his Fiscal Year 2020 budget request. President Trump personally contacted Senator McConnell to inform him of this critical step forward for the project.
With this funding legislation, Senator McConnell is fulfilling our country’s promise to Kentucky veterans for a new, modern health-care facility. Since 2008, he has used his leadership position as well as his seniority on the Senate Appropriations Committee to prioritize the project. In addition to today’s announcement, Senator McConnell previously secured a total of $450 million for the new facility, including the project’s first appropriation of $75 million in a 2008 government-funding bill.
“Since I secured the initial federal funding for the construction of a new veterans medical center in Louisville, I’ve remained determined to fulfill our sacred obligation to our nation’s heroes,”said Senator McConnell.“Working closely with Kentucky’s veterans, the VA and multiple presidents, we continued moving toward today’s outstanding news. Because of President Trump’s strong commitment to our veterans, he answered my request and helped me finally deliver the remaining federal resources to complete this facility. Although no single government program can ever fully repay the enormous debt we owe our veterans, I look forward the vital care the new VAMC will provide to those who sacrificed to keep our nation safe.
“It takes a visionary leader like Senator Mitch McConnell to deliver for Kentucky’s veterans,”said Carl Kaelin, a Vietnam Veteran from Leitchfield, Kentucky and former National Chief of Staff of the Veterans of Foreign Wars (VFW).“For more than a decade, Senator McConnell has led the charge to keep the promise to build a new, modern veterans medical center in Louisville. Now, joined by President Trump, he’s championed the passage of the federal funding bill to complete that mission. Having one of the top congressional leaders from our Commonwealth means that Kentucky’s priorities are at the center of the national agenda, and we will enjoy the results for years to come.”
Earlier this year, Senator McConnell met with Stephen Black, the new director of the Louisville VAMC, to discuss the status of this project and to reiterate his long-standing work to ensure the new Louisville facility will provide the space, equipment and resources needed to fully serve the specific needs of women veterans.
“Women veterans have a great champion in SenatorMcConnell, who answered our call for help to ensure the VA system is meeting the needs of women veterans across the country,”said Martha J. Lain, U.S. Army veteran and past Commander of the Veterans of Foreign Wars of the Department of Kentucky.“I appreciate his consistent advocacy to prioritize our cause with the VA, and I’m grateful for his leadership to deliver a new medical center in Louisville that will finally provide women veterans with access to high-quality, specialized care in a modern facility.”
Last year, Senator McConnell contacted U.S. Secretary of Veterans Affairs Robert Wilkie to ensure his support for the inclusion of the Louisville VAMC project in the President’s FY 2020 budget request. In February, Senator McConnell also contacted Office of Management and Budget (OMB) Director and Acting White House Chief of Staff Mick Mulvaney to finalize the Louisville VAMC funding request.
In 2009, legislation introduced by Senator McConnell to name the current and future VAMC after Kentucky hero Robley Rex was enacted into law.
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