Congressman José E. Serrano

Representing the 15th District of New York

Congressman Serrano Becomes Senior Democrat on Commerce, Justice, Science Appropriations Subcommittee

Feb 1, 2017
Press Release
Commerce, Justice and Science Subcommittee has jurisdiction over key agencies with oversight over civil rights and voting rights, trade enforcement, and environmental issues among others

Washington, DC – Today, U.S. Congressman Serrano officially assumed the position of Ranking Member of the House Appropriations Commerce, Justice, Science Subcommittee after the Democratic Policy and Steering Committee ratified all Appropriations Subcommittee Ranking Members and released the following statement:

“I am thrilled to take the helm and lead Democrats’ work on the Commerce, Justice and Science Appropriations Subcommittee. With President Trump in power, our work in Congress to preserve important rights and programs is now more than important than ever.

“This subcommittee has an important role to play in funding programs and policies important to all Americans. It ensures that the Department of Justice has the resources to protect civil rights and voting rights and deliver needed assistance to local law enforcement, domestic violence victims, and many others.  It provides federal funding to the Department of Commerce’s diverse missions, which range from trade enforcement to environmental issues to assisting minority-owned businesses.  It provides assistance to numerous agencies that help people uphold their statutory and constitutional rights- like the Legal Services Corporation, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, and the Commission on Civil Rights. And the numerous sciences agencies in the bill fund the research that help our nation remain the premier economy in the world.

Unfortunately, many these priorities are being targeted by the Trump Administration and their allies in Congress.  According to press reports, the Administration may propose eliminating a number of programs within the Department of Justice, including both the COPS program and grants under the Violence Against Women Act.  These same reports also indicated that Republicans are considering cuts to the Civil Rights Division and the Environment and Natural Resources Division.  Additionally, they pointed out Republican interest in eliminating the Legal Services Corporation and defunding numerous Department of Commerce programs that helps businesses grow and enforce our trade laws.”

“I am already deeply troubled by actions taken at some of these agencies- especially with regard to the Department of Justice.  I intend to hold those in charge of these areas accountable for their actions, and I plan to fight tooth and nail against any efforts to reduce funding for programs vital to my constituents and all Americans.  I will do everything in my power to ensure adequate funding for these agencies, which guarantee that our fundamental constitutional rights are respected and protected, that our nation’s laws are vigorously enforced, that our businesses get the assistance and information they need to grow, and that our future is secured through innovative research and development.”

The Appropriations Committee funds the operation of the federal government, and is broken up into 12 subcommittees which conduct oversight and make funding decisions for the agencies under their jurisdiction.



Examples of agencies under the jurisdiction of the Commerce, Justice, and Science (CJS) Appropriations Subcommittee include the following:

Department of Justice:

FBI- Federal Bureau of Investigation

ATF- Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives

DEA- Drug Enforcement Administration

Executive Office of Immigration Review

Office on Violence Against Women

Federal Bureau of Prisons


Department of Commerce:

National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA)

Census Bureau

National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST)

Minority Business Development Agency (MBDA)

Economic Development Administration (EDA)

US Patent and Trademark Office

International Trade Administration (ITA)


NASA (National Aeronautics and Space Administration)

National Science Foundation

Legal Services Corporation

Equal Employment Opportunity Commission

International Trade Commission

Commission on Civil Rights

Marine Mammal Commission


Executive Office of the President

Office of Science and Technology Policy

Office of the US Trade Representative