Opportunity to Avoid Sequestration Would Still Bring Deep Cuts
After a week of Congressional recess, the House Committee on the Budget will mark up H.R. 4966, a bill designed to avoid sequestration required by the Budget Control Act of 2011 (BCA) while still achieving deep spending cuts.
House Committee on the Budget Chair Paul Ryan (R-WI) introduced H.R. 4996, the “Sequester Replacement Act of 2012,” on April 27, 2012. H.R. 4996 would reduce the amount of funding available for other discretionary spending in FY13 by $19 billion below the spending cap enacted in the BCA beginning in January 2013.
By establishing a January 2013 date for reducing discretionary spending rather than the October 1 fiscal year, the House Budget Committee may be demonstrating an interest in postponing appropriations negotiations until after the November 2012 election. Congress may choose to pass a continuing resolution to provide funding for the first several months of FY13 rather than negotiate all of their final FY13 appropriations bills prior to the start of the fiscal year.
As background, the House budget resolution, H. Con. Res. 112, which passed in March, included reconciliation instructions to House committees to devise spending reduction plans in April. The House Committee on Financial Services and five other committees held hearings and then submitted recommendations on programmatic cuts to the Committee on the Budget. The Committee then held a hearing in April 2012
The Budget Committee is expected to mark up the bill on May 7, 2012 and then move the bill to the House floor later that week.
For more information about sequestration and its impact, click here to read a previous post.