The bill H.R. 2775 is a bill that was introduced into the United States House of Representatives during the 113th United States Congress. The original version of H.R. 2775 was called the No Subsidies Without Verification Act and would have declared that no premium tax credits or reductions in cost-sharing for the purchase of qualified health benefit plans under the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA) shall be allowed before the Secretary of Health and Human Services (HHS) certifies to Congress that there is a program in place, consistent with PPACA requirements, that verifies the household income and coverage requirements of individuals applying for such credits and cost-sharing reduction. Continue reading “Continuing Appropriations Act, 2014”
In the midst of shrinking federal spending on infrastructure, scientific research, Head Start, and other government programs, the costs of government contractor executives’ salaries and compensation are set to soar unless Congress takes action. This is another example of how current government policies transfer resources to the wealthy and away from the programs that broadly support and grow a vibrant middle class.
The maximum amount a government contractor can charge taxpayers for employees’ salaries is about to rise at least 25 percent in the next few weeks, from $763,029 to more than $950,000 – nearly $1 million. This comes as federal employees have seen pay freezes – justified on the basis of saving public dollars – and as most Americans have seen stagnant incomes over the past several years. It also comes as federal spending is reduced through the Budget Control Act of 2011 and sequestration. Continue reading “As Austerity Shrinks Government Budgets, Contractor CEO Pay and Public Costs Set to Rise”
Government spending continues to exceed government revenues, which means that the national debt keeps growing. Without a change in spending and taxation plans, the national debt will soon reach unprecedented levels. Such debt levels risk triggering a financial crisis.
Dealing with this complicated set of issues resulted in intense political debate during the summer of 2011. The result of the debate was the Budget Control Act of 2011 (known as the BCA). The BCA reduced planned defense spending by about $490 billion and established a congressional committee to recommend at least $1.2 trillion in additional deficit reduction measures. Continue reading “What is Sequestration, and Why is it Bad?”
As March 1 approaches, across-the-board federal spending cuts, called sequestration, appear almost certain to occur. Republicans and Democrats are not negotiating to resolve the looming crisis. Neither seems sufficiently motivated to compromise.
The problem is not that sequestration is nothing to worry about. According to an analysis by the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities, sequestration will cut most domestic programs by about 5.3 percent and most defense spending by 7.7 percent. Moreover, these cuts will be compressed into a short, seven-month time frame, which will nearly double their impact for the rest of the year to nine and 13 percent respectively. Continue reading “Sequestration Standoff”
Congressional Budget Office
The Budget Control Act of 2011 (enacted on August 2 as Public Law 112-25) made several changes to federal programs and established budget enforcement mechanisms—including caps on future discretionary appropriations—that were estimated to reduce federal budget deficits by a total of at least $2.1 trillion over the 2012–2021 period. The caps on discretionary appropriations will decrease spending (including debt-service costs) by an estimated $0.9 trillion during that period, compared with what such spending would have been if annual appropriations had grown at the rate of inflation. At least another $1.2 trillion in deficit reduction was anticipated from provisions related to a newly established Congressional Joint Select Committee on Deficit Reduction. That committee is charged with proposing legislation to trim budget deficits by at least $1.5 trillion between 2012 and 2021. However, if legislation originating from the committee and estimated to produce at least $1.2 trillion in deficit reduction (including an allowance for interest savings) is not enacted by January 15, 2012, automatic procedures for cutting both discretionary and mandatory spending will take effect. The magnitude of those cuts would depend on any shortfall in the estimated effects of such legislation relative to the $1.2 trillion amount. Continue reading “Estimated Impact of Automatic Budget Enforcement Procedures Specified in the Budget Control Act”