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Press Releases

Search Senator Leahy’s press releases, floor statements, and Committee speeches by date or by subject.


Leahy: Newly Renamed Paul Bruhn Historic Preservation Program Is Awarding $745,000 To The Preservation Trust Of Vermont

MONTPELIER, Vt. (FRIDAY, Aug. 28, 2020) - Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) Friday announced that the Preservation Trust of Vermont has been awarded a $745,000 award from the Paul Bruhn Historic Revitalization Grant Program grant, administered by the National Park Service. The grant was one of only eight applications funded nationally as part of the Leahy-created program to invest in historic preservation in rural communities around the country. Leahy renamed the program in honor Vermonter Paul Br… Continue Reading


Leahy To Lead Senators On Bill To Restore National Guard Coronavirus Funding At 100 Percent

(THURSDAY, Aug. 27, 2020) -- Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.), announced Thursday that he will introduce a bill with Senators Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.), Richard Durbin (D-Ill.), and Tammy Duckworth (D-Ill.) to restore full federal funding for the National Guard's efforts to respond to the COVID-19 pandemic. On August 3, in the midst of a spike in newly reported coronavirus cases, the President signed a Presidential Memorandum terminating the 100 percent federal cost share with the National Guard that… Continue Reading


This Year’s Women’s Economic Opportunity Conference Cancelled; Planning Will Start For WEOC 2021

(WEDNESDAY), Aug. 26, 2020) - Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) Wednesday announced the cancellation of what would have been Vermont's 24th Annual Women's Economic Opportunity Conference (WEOC), due to the challenges of the COVID pandemic. It is only the second time in the long history of the conference that it has been cancelled, the first time being after 9/11. Leahy launched the annual conference in 1996. In a letter sent to nearly 3,300 Vermonters who have participated in recent conferences,… Continue Reading


Senate Appropriations Committee Vice Chairman Patrick Leahy Announces Cancellation Of USCIS Furloughs

(TUESDAY, Aug. 25, 2020) - After repeatedly pressing the Trump Administration, Senate Appropriations Committee Vice Chairman Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) announced Tuesday that the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) has cancelled its scheduled furlough of more than 13,000 dedicated public servants. The furlough was set to take effect on August 30. Leahy said: "It is welcome news that these women and men will be able to continue to assist the thousands of United States Citizens, employ… Continue Reading


Leahy Leads Bicameral Amicus Brief In Litigation Against President Trump’s Illegal Asylum Ban

(FRIDAY, Aug. 21, 2020) - Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) is leading a bicameral amicus brief in O.A. v. Trump at the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals, seeking to preserve the D.C. District Court's decision to strike down President Trump's plainly illegal ban on all asylum claims outside of ports of entry. Leahy's previous amicus brief helped the plaintiff asylum seekers convince the lower court to strike down President Trump's illegal ban. Leahy filed this amicus brief at the D.C. Circuit joined b… Continue Reading


The Assault On Our Postal Service

I'm hearing it from Vermonters every day, and with increasing urgency. From Bennington, to South Newfane, to South Burlington, to Newport, to Windsor, to West Dover: People from all walks of life are rightly concerned about the threats to the mail service that we used to take for granted - the best mail service in the world -- and we should be able to take it for granted. What Vermonters are experiencing is deeply troubling. The urgent medical message to a Vermonter from her cardiologist tha… Continue Reading


Leahy: Vermont’s Dairy Business Innovation Center To Receive Significant Funding Boost

(THURSDAY, Aug. 20, 2020) - Vermont Senator Patrick Leahy on Thursday announced a significant funding increase for the Vermont-Northeast Dairy Business Innovation Center. The Center, operated by the Vermont Agency of Agriculture, Food and Markets (VAAFM), was originally selected as one of three regional dairy innovation centers through a competitive process in 2019. As Vice Chairman of the U.S. Senate Appropriations Committee, Leahy secured a significant increase to the national program's fund… Continue Reading


Leahy Calls On USCIS To Delay Furlough Of 13,000 Dedicated Public Servants In Midst Of Pandemic

(TUESDAY, Aug. 18, 2020) -- Senate Appropriations Committee Vice Chairman Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) Tuesday called on the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) to further delay the agency's scheduled furlough of 13,000 public servants from August 30 to the end of the fiscal year. Leahy wrote: "To put it more plainly, USCIS could pay all of its staff through the end of the fiscal year, avoid furloughs entirely, and still end the fiscal year with a sizeable carryover balance." In May, U… Continue Reading


Leahy, Sanders, Welch And Scott Announce $4.4 M. In N. Border Grants To 14 Vermont Communities

MONTPELIER, VT. (TUESDAY, Aug. 18, 2020) - Senator Patrick Leahy (D), Senator Bernie Sanders (I), Representative Peter Welch (D), Governor Phil Scott (R) and officials from the Northern Border Regional Commission (NBRC) announced Tuesday that 14 Vermont organizations will receive more than $4.4 million in federal grants to promote economic development across the Green Mountain State. Funds will help local communities build out fiber optic broadband networks, facilitate new infrastructure develo… Continue Reading


Shaheen Leads Appropriations Subcommittee Democrats’ Call for GAO Assessment of Census Count

() - U.S. Senator Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH), the Ranking Member of the Commerce, Justice, Science and Related Agencies Appropriations subcommittee which is charged with funding the Census Bureau and Census operations, led a letter signed by all the Democrats on the panel calling for the Government Accountability Office to thoroughly assess and compile a report on the "completeness and quality" of the 2020 Census. Shaheen's letter, signed by Senators Patrick Leahy (D-VT), Dianne Feinstein (D-CA), Jac… Continue Reading


Statement On Guatemala’s Constitutional Court

"Democracy cannot survive without an independent judiciary. In Guatemala, like many countries, courts are susceptible to political interference and to pressure from criminal organizations. That is how a culture of lawlessness takes root. Corruption, threats, violence, and impunity become a way of life. It is the responsibility of the executive, the legislature, and civil society to protect the independence of the courts, including the process for selecting impartial, qualified magistrates. … Continue Reading


Leahy, Sanders And Welch Welcome $2.1 M. In CARES Act Investments To Capitalize Revolving Loan Funds To Help Small Businesses Across Vermont In Responding To The Pandemic

(THURSDAY, Aug.13, 2020) - Senator Patrick Leahy (D), Senator Bernie Sanders (I) and Representative Peter Welch (D) Friday welcomed the award of $2.1 million in federal CARES Act funds to capitalize and administer Revolving Loan Funds (RLFs) that will provide critical gap financing to small businesses and entrepreneurs adversely affected by the coronavirus pandemic across Vermont. The grants are administered by the Commerce Department's Economic Development Administration (EDA). Leahy sa… Continue Reading


Leahy Joins Bipartisan Push To Extend Congress’s Deadline For Submitting Final Census Information

(TUESDAY, Aug. 11, 2020) - U.S. Senators Brian Schatz (D-Hawai'i) and Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska) today led a group of 48 bipartisan senators in calling for the extension of the statutory deadlines for the delivery of apportionment data and redistricting files following the 2020 Census. The senators urged House and Senate leaders to include the extension in the upcoming COVID-19 relief package. "Extending the deadlines for the delivery of these files in the next COVID-19 relief package will ensur… Continue Reading


Leahy Leads 33 Other Senators In Pressing The White House To Restore Full Funding For National Guard’s COVID-19 Response

(MONDAY, Aug. 10, 2020) -- Thirty-four U.S. Senators led by Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) are asking President Trump to restore full funding to states for the National Guard forces responding to the COVID-19 pandemic. Last week the President reduced FEMA reimbursement for National Guard units from 100 percent to 75 percent, with no explanation, and with the unexplained exception of Florida and Texas. Since March, National Guard units in every state and territory have supported response to he… Continue Reading


Leahy Joins Bipartisan Letter To Urge Defense Dept. And VA To Restore Full Education Benefits For Guard Members And Reservists

(MONDAY, Aug. 10, 2020) - Senators John Hoeven (R-N.D.) and John Boozman (R-Ark.) today announced that the Office of Secretary of Defense (OSD) will work with the Department of Veterans Affairs to enable members of the Guard and Reserve to concurrently use Federal Tuition Assistance and GI Bill benefits to fund their education, similar to active duty servicemembers. This achieves the goals of Hoeven and Boozman's bill, the Montgomery GI Bill Parity Act, which Senators Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) and K… Continue Reading


REAX Of Senate Appropriations Committee Vice Chairman Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) To President Trump’s Coronavirus Executive Orders

The President wants to reopen schools, but opposes funding for schools to make them safe. The President thinks the virus will just disappear, but opposes funding for testing and tracing. The President promises that vaccines will be available by November, but opposes funding for vaccine development, distribution, and to make the vaccine affordable to everyone. The President says that the virus "is what it is," but he opposes funding for hospitals and other health care providers to support the … Continue Reading


Vermont Receives $2 M. Through Leahy-Created Program Targeting Rural Addiction

(FRIDAY, Aug. 7, 2020) -- Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.), Vice Chairman of the Senate Appropriations Committee, Friday announced that the Central Vermont Medical Center Inc. in Berlin, Vt., and Connecticut Valley Addiction Recovery Inc. in Windsor, Vt., are each receiving federal grants of $1 million to target rural addiction challenges. The grants are from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services' Health Resources and Services Administration's Rural Communities Opioid Response (RCORP) P… Continue Reading


Leahy Hails Boost To Vermont Water Quality Funding

(THURSDAY, Aug. 6, 2020) - Vermont's ongoing efforts to address water quality received another significant boost Thursday as the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) announced a new initiative to address New England water quality and wildlife habitat work on a regional scale. The creation of a new Critical Conservation Area (CCA) within USDA's Regional Conservation Partnership Program (RCPP), will allow Vermont to partner with other New England states on large-scale conservation projects. Lea… Continue Reading


Leahy Introduces The Federal Employee Access To Information Act To Protect Federal Employees From Retaliation For Filing FOIA Requests

(TUESDAY, Aug. 4, 2020) - Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.), along with Rep. Carolyn B. Maloney and Rep. Gerald E. Connolly, introduced the Federal Employee Access to Information Act to ensure that federal employees are able to use the nation's premier transparency law, the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA), without reprisal. FOIA helps expose government wrongdoing and abuses, and Leahy believes that federal employees must be free to use FOIA in the same way as other citizens. This legislation w… Continue Reading


Hassan, Collins, 34 Colleagues Push for Support of School Meal Programs Amid COVID-19 Pandemic

U.S. Senators Maggie Hassan (D-NH), Susan Collins (R-ME), and 34 of their colleagues are urging the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) to continue critical flexibilities that have allowed students to access much-needed meals throughout the COVID-19 pandemic. If extended throughout the 2020-2021 school year, children would maintain access regardless of school opening status, and struggling school nutrition programs would benefit from additional financial relief. "The COVID-19 pandemi… Continue Reading

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