Wednesday, U.S. Senator Joe Donnelly released his annual report for 2017. The report details Donnelly’s bipartisan legislative work, his travels around Indiana, and his efforts to help Hoosiers. The report also highlights the Senator’s accomplishments, a number of bipartisan bills and amendments that were signed into law, and his continued recognition as one of the most bipartisan Senators. Twelve of his provisions were signed into law in 2017 and, since 2013, he has had 35 measures enacted overall.
Donnelly said, “I’m the hired help and this report highlights my efforts over the past year to represent Hoosiers from all 92 counties in the United States Senate. By continuing to work in a bipartisan manner, several of the legislative efforts I led were signed into law and I was proud that my Jacob Sexton Military Suicide Prevention Act was implemented by our Armed Forces. Through my work with Republicans and Democrats my legislation that was enacted will improve mental health care for our law enforcement officers, address the devastating opioid abuse epidemic, and require the White House to develop and bring to Congress a comprehensive, clear strategy to counter North Korea.”
2017 highlights include:
- Visited all 92 counties, and hosted or participated in 544 events in 129 cities and towns over 192 days in Indiana.
- Heard from constituents from 92 counties and logged a total of 687,508 contacts including emails, calls, mail, and faxes.
- Opened and worked on 1,857 cases for Hoosiers in need of assistance with federal agencies, resulting in more than $2.57 million in federal benefits being returned to Hoosiers.
- Supported over 70 grant applications for projects across Indiana and more than $16 million in federal funding came back to the state with his support.
Delivered results through his legislative work:
- Implementation of Jacob Sexton Military Suicide Act: Donnelly’s signature legislation has been implemented throughout the Armed Forces, including the Indiana National Guard. The law seeks to prevent military suicide by requiring all servicemembers — Guard, Reserve, and Active Duty — to have an annual mental health assessment.
- Countering North Korea: Donnelly’s provision requiring a comprehensive strategy from the White House to confront the threat posed by North Korea was signed into law as part of the annual national defense bill. The President also signed into law legislation Joe helped shape that increases sanctions on North Korea, as well as Iran and Russia.
- Law Enforcement Mental Health and Wellness Act: Donnelly’s bipartisan legislation with Senator Young (R-IN) to support law enforcement mental health programs was signed into law and will help law enforcement agencies establish or enhance mental health services for their officers.
- $11 million in Federal Funding for Indiana to Address Opioid Epidemic: Through the 21st Century Cures Act, which Donnelly successfully pushed to enact, he helped Indiana secure nearly $11 million in federal grant funding that will support opioid abuse prevention, treatment, and recovery services across the state.
- VA Prescription Data Accountability Act: Donnelly’s bipartisan legislation with Senator Mike Rounds (R-SD) to help the Department of Veterans Affairs more effectively identify and treat opioid abuse among veterans and their dependents was signed into law.
- Vietnam Veterans War Day Donnelly’s bipartisan bill with Senator Pat Toomey (R-PA) permanently designating March 29th as National Vietnam War Veterans Day became law. In March 2018, Joe will host an event in Indiana to honor Hoosier Vietnam veterans, many of whom did not receive the recognition they deserved when they came home following their service.
- Wounded Officer Recovery Act: Donnelly partnered with Senators Jeff Flake (R-AZ), Rand Paul (R-KY), and Chris Murphy (D-CT) on legislation signed into law that expands eligibility of the United States Police Memorial Fund to include any U.S. Capitol Police employee seriously injured in the line of duty, like those injured in the shooting at the Congressional Baseball game practice in Virginia.