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Budget-Reconciliation Highlights

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  • A House proposal to turn school-meals entitlement programs into a block grant with limited funding is not included in the reconciliation bill but could resurface.
  • The bill would freeze inflation adjustments to reimbursement rates paid to schools.
  • The bill would bar illegal-immigrant children and certain legal immigrants from receiving subsidized meals.

Welfare Reform

  • The bill would remove the guarantee of coverage for all eligible families and turn welfare funds over to states through block grants.
  • It would bar additional benefits for recipients who have more children while on welfare, except in states whose legislatures vote to opt out of the policy.
  • It would allow states to receive more federal funds if their illegitimacy rates decrease.
  • A House provision that would have barred unmarried teenage mothers from receiving benefits was not included.

Child Care

  • Several programs would be consolidated into a block grant; $17 billion is authorized over seven years, 70 percent of which is earmarked for welfare recipients.

Supplemental Security Income

  • The bill would tighten eligibility rules, requiring children to meet specific definitions of disability.
  • It would require that cash-benefit levels be determined by the severity of a child's disability, rather than just family income.

Medicaid

  • The bill would replace guaranteed coverage for poor children and disabled people with a block grant to states, with limited funding.
  • It would require that states cover poor pregnant women and children under age 12.

Student Loans

  • The bill would save $4.9 billion over seven years by decreasing subsidies to private lenders and limiting the direct-lending program to 10 percent of total student-loan volume.

SOURCE: House and Senate staff members.

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