April 1, 2014
House Budget Chairman Paul Ryan unveiled the House FY15 Budget today. The measure proposes to cut $5.1 trillion over a decade in a bid to erase the federal deficit, while calling once again for dramatic changes to Medicare, Medicaid, and the tax code.
The House proposal would significantly reduce federal support for college access. The Ryan Budget would eliminate the interest subsidy for all subsidized undergraduate student loans — based on a CBO estimate last year,that would increase loan costs to students by some $50 billion over ten years. The proposed budget would eliminate all mandatory funding for Pell, shifting it totally to discretionary funding, while freezing the maximum Pell grant for the next decade. That essentially means that $870 in the maximum grant would have to be funded by increased discretionary funds or the maximum be cut from $5,730 to $4,860.
Additionally, the Ryan Budget proposes to cut Non Discretionary Defense (NDD) funding by $761 billion below the current caps, and more than doubles down on the sequester cuts by shifting all of the cuts scheduled for defense starting in FY16 to NDD funding. In FY 16, the NDD cap would be cut from $492 billion to $450 billion, an 8.5% cut. By the end of the ten year window, NDD would be cut by 22%.
The nearly 100-page blueprint is likely be the last formal budget proposal from Ryan, the Republican chairman of the Budget Committee who wants to move to the more powerful Ways and Means Committee next year.
The House Budget Committee is expected to mark up the legislation Wednesday in a session expected to last well into the night.
The Office of Federal Affairs is continuing to review the legislation and will provide updates as the measure changes in the legislative process.