Federal Relations

Budget


June 14, 2010

Education Funding Proposal Still Alive

The House of Representatives continues to explore options for providing funds to states to save education jobs and to close the shortfall in the Pell Grant program, as part of a fiscal year 2010 supplemental spending bill. The $84 billion bill crafted by House Appropriations Chairman David Obey (D-WI) includes $23 billion to help states avoid laying off…


June 9, 2010

OMB Seeking FY12 Agency Budget Cuts

Yesterday, the White Office of Management and Budget (OMB) issued two memoranda instructing non-security federal agencies to submit two separate plans for cutting both spending and low-priority programs in their FY12 budget submissions. The first memorandum, from OMB Director Peter Orszag, requires each agency to submit an FY12 budget request that is five percent below…


June 7, 2010

Congress Returns to Unfinished Business

Congress returns this week from its one-week Memorial Day recess with the Senate ready to take up the House-passed “extenders” bill, while the House determines their next move on the FY10 supplemental bill. Tax Extenders:  The tax extenders measure (HR 4213) under consideration in the Senate includes a number of important program authorities that expired…


May 31, 2010

Education Jobs Funds Uncertain

In April, Senator Tom Harkin (D-IA) introduced the Keep Our Educators Working Act of 2010 –cosponsored by Senator Patty Murray and 28 other Democratic Senators. The legislation provided for $23 billion to be distributed to governors to save or create K-12 and higher education jobs. According to the formula in the bill, the State of…


May 21, 2010

NOAA Funds Likely in Supplemental Spending Bill

NOAA has been responding to the Deepwater Horizon incident and providing coordinated scientific weather and biological response services. We are also waiting for action on the FY10 Emergency Supplemental Appropriations Bill (H.R. 4899), which the Senate is set to consider starting Monday.   On May 12, the Administration requested $20 M from Congress for supplemental…


May 6, 2010

NIH Addresses Funding “Cliff”

Yesterday, the National Institutes of Health director told Senate appropriators that the agency’s funding will face a “cliff” in FY11 when a two-year allocation of $10.4 billion in stimulus money for research runs out.  NIH Director Francis Collins also told committee members that during the past 30 years NIH grant applicants had a 25 percent…


Update: Retirement, Budget, and Disaster Relief

The retirement of House Appropriations Chairman David Obey (D-WI) will mark a change in the Democratic leadership of one of Congress’ most powerful committees.  Our own Congressman Norm Dicks (D-WA) appears to be the lead candidate to replace Obey as the top Democrat on Appropriations in the next Congress.  Currently the second-ranking Democrat on the…


April 15, 2010

Senator Harkin Introduces Education Jobs Fund Bill, Senator Murray a Co-Sponsor

**Updated 4/16/10** Yesteday Senator Tom Harkin (D-Iowa), chairman of the Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee and of the Senate appropriations panel that oversees education funding, introduced a bill that would provide $23 billion for an Education Jobs Fund. The Education Jobs Fund is modeled after the State Fiscal Stabilization Fund (SFSF) portion of…


March 4, 2010

Health Insurance and Student Aid Overhauls Likely Headed for Reconciliation

Yesterday, during a speech at the White House, President Obama called on Congress to give health care reform an up or down vote before the Easter congressional recess -beginning March 29th. The message seemed to make clear that the President, along with Speaker Pelosi and Majority Leader Reid, intend to pursue passage of health insurance reform…


February 3, 2010

Jobs Agenda Replaces Jobs Bill in Senate

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV), reflecting the reality imposed by the loss of a fillibuster-proof majority, has articulated that he intends to move several small jobs measures through the chamber — as opposed to one large bill — in order to attract some Republican support for non-controversial items. Senator Reid indicated a desire to…



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