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National Guard cancels trainings after Congress fails to reimburse for Capitol riot deployment
The National Guard is canceling trainings after Congress failed to reimburse the force for its months-long deployment at the U.S. Capitol following the Jan. 6 insurrection.
National Guard Bureau spokesman Wayne Hall told The Hill that six events from the Nebraska National Guard have been canceled to save money because Congress has still not reimbursed the branch for its deployment.
The events canceled in August and September include a marksmanship sustainment exercise, a company commander and first sergeants pre-command course, a commander's training synchronization workshop, a commander's unit status report, small arms familiarization school, and National Guard endurance team time trials.
Hall said other events in different states could be canceled in the future.
"There will likely be more things that would be canceled if the funding is not restored," Hall stated.
Officials with the National Guard have warned Congress on multiple occasions that trainings and the branches' readiness would be negatively impacted if the National Guard wasn't reimbursed the $521 million used during its deployment in Washington, D.C.
"Without reimbursement funding, there is significant impact on National Guard readiness if we're not able to resolve this in a timely manner," Army Gen. Daniel Hokanson, chief of the National Guard Bureau, said in a statement on July 17.
National Guard members from every state and territory protected the Capitol for months after a group of Trump supporters breached Capitol security on Jan. 6. in an effort to stop the certification of the 2020 election results.
The long stay came with a big bill that Congress will not pay up until a deal is reached on emergency appropriations between lawmakers.
Another training event in August that was focused on marksmanship was also canceled.
"We just couldn't incur the cost," Maj. Scott Ingalsbe, spokesperson for the Nebraska National Guard, told CNN when talking about the canceled events. Canceling events has saved the National Guard money on meal costs, travel and lodging.
"I am proud of the 300 Nebraska Airmen and Soldiers who answered the call in January to secure our nation's capital and ensure a peaceful transfer of power. Their regularly scheduled training and the correlated pay and benefits - modest paychecks families depend on to pay rent and put food on the table - should never be in doubt," Maj. Gen. Daryl Bohac, Adjutant General of the Nebraska National Guard, said in a statement to The Hill.
"While we have already cancelled or postponed several events to conserve resources, further loss of funding would be detrimental to our future readiness for federal missions or emergencies here in the state of Nebraska," he added.
Senate Appropriations Committee Chairman Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) and the panel's top Republican, Sen. Richard Shelby (Ala.), both have said they believe an agreement will be reached in August.
Hall told The Hill he could not speculate if he believed the branch will be reimbursed in August.
A bipartisan letter from 70 lawmakers urged House and Senate leadership to get a deal done quickly in order to repay the National Guard.
The Hill has reached out to the Nebraska National Guard for comment.
Updated 4:47 p.m.