This week, the House and Senate Appropriations Committees approved topline spending levels, or 302(b) allocations, for FY19 – including for the State-Foreign Operations (SFOPS) bills, which fund the vast majority of the International Affairs Budget. The Senate Appropriations Committee also approved its FY19 Agriculture spending and the Administration’s rescissions package appears to be stalled in the House.
This week the Administration released a proposal to rescind $15.4 billion in prior-year unobligated funds, starting a process last used almost 20 years ago to cancel Congressional appropriations pursuant to the Budget and Impoundment Control Act of 1974. Prior to the proposal’s release, it was reported that the International Affairs Budget could be disproportionately targeted. Instead, the proposal includes $334 million in rescissions to the International Affairs Budget, roughly 2% of the overall package.
Six months into the fiscal year, and after weeks of intense negotiations, Congress passed an omnibus appropriations bill for FY18 that will keep the government open through September 30, 2018.
When it comes to funding for development and diplomacy, the omnibus overwhelmingly rejects the deep and disproportionate cuts proposed by the Administration in FY18 – highlighting the strong bipartisan support in Congress for these critical programs. The International Affairs Budget receives a total of $55.9 billion, split between $43.9 billion in base funding and $12 billion in Overseas Contingency Operations (OCO) funding.
Reps. Chris Smith (R-NJ) and Betty McCollum (D-MN) introduce a three-year reauthorization (H.R. 5129) of the Global Food Security Act, which directed the U.S. government to develop and implement a comprehensive strategy to address global food insecurity and combat malnutrition.
The Administration’s FY19 budget request, released today, comes just three days after Congress approved a landmark budget deal that increases the discretionary spending caps in FY18 and FY19 to alleviate the strain on discretionary spending programs including International Affairs.
In a surprise conclusion to months of unsuccessful negotiations, early this morning Congress approved a sweeping budget deal to lift discretionary spending caps for FY18 and FY19 – but only after a drama-filled 48 hours that culminated in a five-hour government shutdown. The bipartisan agreement also includes a six-week Continuing Resolution (CR) extending FY17 funding levels through March 23 and several other priority items, including emergency disaster relief funds and a one-year suspension of the debt ceiling.
Today, Congress approved a short-term Continuing Resolution (CR), ending a government shutdown that lasted nearly three days. The CR extends FY17 funding levels through February 8, giving Congressional leaders three more weeks to reach a budget deal that lifts the caps on defense and non-defense discretionary spending.
As a midnight deadline to fund the government came and went, Congress failed to approve a fourth Continuing Resolution (CR) that would have once again extended FY17 funding levels – triggering a government shutdown. The last government shutdown in October 2013 lasted for 16 days. Congress plans to work through the weekend on an agreement to end the shutdown, which could come as early as Monday.
Capping off a busy week dominated by the passage of tax reform legislation, Congress on Thursday approved a Continuing Resolution (CR) to keep the government open and avoid a shutdown just before the holidays. The CR extends FY17 funding levels through January 19, 2018 – giving Members of Congress time to revive stalled negotiations on a budget deal to determine final FY18 spending levels.
Senators Bob Casey (D-PA) and Johnny Isakson (R-GA) introduce a five-year reauthorization (S. 2269) of the Global Food Security Act, which directed the U.S. government to develop and implement a comprehensive strategy to address global food insecurity and combat malnutrition.