Updated Jul 29, 2021 - Politics & Policy

Congress passes $2.1B Capitol security funding bill

Capitol police officers testify about their experiences during the Jan. 6 riot.

U.S. Capitol police officers testify during a House select committee hearing on the Jan. 6 Capitol riot on July 27. Photo: Andrew Caballero-Reynolds/Pool via Xinhua

A $2.1 billion Capitol security funding bill is heading to President Biden for his signature after the House and Senate passed the legislation on Thursday.

Why it matters: The legislation provides funding for the Capitol Police, the National Guard and other agencies to cover the costs incurred during the Jan. 6 riot.

The big picture: Sen. Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.), who chairs the Senate Appropriations Committee, and Sen. Richard Shelby (R-Ala.), the committee's ranking member, announced an agreement on the $2 billion package Tuesday, the same day four police officers testified about their personal experiences at the Capitol on Jan. 6 .

  • The Senate approved the measure by a 98-0 vote on Thursday, and the House later passed it for a second time with a 416-11 vote.
  • Six progressive Democrats and five Republicans voted against the bill in the House.
  • The House passed a $1.9 billion security spending bill in May in response to the Jan. 6 attack, but was stalled by a funding impasse in the Senate.

Between the lines: The package includes $70.7 million in salaries and general expenses for the Capitol Police response to the riot, per a fact sheet released by Leahy's office.

  • $300 million will go to infrastructure upgrades to the Capitol, including installing new cameras around the building and House offices.
  • The National Guard will be reimbursed $521 million for deploying guards to help with security efforts on Jan. 6 and after.
  • The package also includes about $500 million for the Department of Defense to assist Afghan nationals who facilitated U.S. war efforts. The State Department will also receive about $600 million to process special immigrant visas for Afghans who are relocating to the U.S., per the fact sheet.

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