House GOP seeks to increase spending on VA, military construction

The bill would fund VA and related spending items at $142 billion in FY 2012, which is $3.3 billion more than what was spent in FY 2011. However, the bill funds these programs at $1.25 billion less than what the Obama administration proposed for the next fiscal year.

Under the bill, total funding for VA would be $127.8 billion, a 5.8 percent increase over FY 2011.

While funding levels would increase, report language on the bill from the House Appropriations Committee argues that members took steps to rescind unnecessary funds and delete funds for construction that would "commit future Congresses to exceedingly large expenses."

"The scale of the Nation's debt and the continuing annual deficit weighed heavily on the Committee as it formulated this bill," the report said. "A driving force behind the Committee recommendations is the need to do all that we can to reduce the deficit and balance the budget of the United States."