Shelby selected to first full term as powerful appropriations chair
On Wednesday, Senator Richard Shelby (R-AL) announced his committee assignments for the newly convened 116th Congress. Alabama’s senior senator will continue his historic service as the powerful chairman leading the Senate appropriations process.
In a meeting the same afternoon, the Senate Republican Conference met to ratify committee chairmen for the new Congress and approved Shelby’s unanimous selection by members of the Senate Appropriations Committee to lead the important committee for his first full two-year term as chair.
In addition to serving as the influential chairman of the appropriations committee, Shelby will continue to serve on the Committee on Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs; the Committee on Environment and Public Works; and the Committee on Rules and Administration.
“My committee assignments for the 116th Congress present an opportunity for me to continue serving the state of Alabama and the nation to the best of my ability,” Shelby said in a press release.
“I am honored that my colleagues have continued to place their trust in me to lead the Senate Appropriations Committee,” Shelby added. “I look forward to working closely with Vice Chairman Leahy and all Appropriations Committee members to produce bills that fund our national and local priorities.”
Shelby concluded, “Further, my colleagues and I on various authorizing committees – Banking, Environment and Public Works, Rules – will work this Congress to craft legislation that impacts the lives of all Americans, including my fellow Alabamians.”
Shelby served as chairman of the Senate Appropriations Committee during a portion of the 115th Congress, following Senator Thad Cochran’s (R-MS) resignation from office in March 2018. Shelby also served as vice chairman for the 113th Congress.
Under Shelby’s exemplary leadership on appropriations during the 115th Congress, the committee completed work on all 12 Fiscal Year (FY) 2019 appropriations bills before the July 4th recess, marking the most punctual timeframe in which the committee has completed its regular appropriations bills since 1988.
Additionally, five of those appropriations bills were signed into law before the end of the fiscal year and 75 percent (74.9) of the government was funded on schedule, which signals the most spending bills enacted on time since FY 1997 – more than two decades ago.
The Senate is expected to formally affirm its committee chairmen and rosters in an organizational resolution soon.
Shelby previously served as the chairman of the Senate Committee on Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs and the Committee on Rules and Administration. He joined the Environment and Public Works Committee for the first time during the 115th Congress.
Sean Ross is a staff writer for Yellowhammer News. You can follow him on Twitter @sean_yhn