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The House Appropriations Committee is compiling its own list of potential budget cuts--including reductions for six education programs--in response to President Bush's $5.6-billion "hit list'' of programs he has proposed to eliminate.

The six programs that are set to receive delayed funding on Sept. 30--a device that held down outlay totals in the fiscal 1992 budget--would find those funds cut by 1 percent under a bill that would trim previously approved spending by $5.7 billion.

About $25 million of the rescissions in the committee's bill would come from programs overseen by the Labor, Health and Human Services, and Education Subcommittee.

The President proposed cutting $25 million from health-professions programs. But subcommittee leaders instead would raise $19 million by taking 1 percent from the $1.9 billion in delayed obligations.

Of that $1.9 billion, $301 million is earmarked for education programs: $152 million for Chapter 1; $62 million for Pell Grants; $60 million for vocational education; $24 million for the ôòéï programs; $2 million for impact aid, and $1 million for the Star Schools program.

The plan would also cut the Public Health Service budget by $6 million.

A subcommittee aide said the panel plans to take up the matter soon after the Congress returns from its Easter recess later this month.

A Senate aide said the counterpart Senate subcommittee will not act until a bill is passed by the House.

The Senate has approved a fiscal year 1993 budget resolution that recommends spending $50.7 billion for education, labor, and social-services programs--freezing funding at 1992 levels.

The Senate approved the resolution on April 10 by a vote of 54 to 35, paving the way for a conference with the House, which recommended $51.5 billion for the programs in the social-services spending category.

The Senate resolution does not outline spending priorities within categories.

The Senate debated an amendment to the resolution that called for a limit on entitlement spending, a proposal that has been floated by Budget Director Richard Darman.

The plan could help many education programs, but would restrict funding for Stafford Student Loans, the only education entitlement.

The idea intrigues some appropriators, who could be left with more money to divide among discretionary programs if required spending were restricted.

But the amendment's sponsors withdrew it after the Senate voted 66 to 28 to exempt veterans' programs from the cap, indicating that opponents were able to gut the proposal by adding exemptions.

Earlier, the Senate defeated several attempts to trim the resolution's defense spending and transfer funds to domestic programs, a move that can only be accomplished with changes to budgetary rules. (See Education Week, April 8, 1992.)

House and Senate leaders have agreed on campaign-finance-reform legislation, but it is unlikely to become law.

Republicans, who often outspend Democrats, oppose the compromise bill's key components: voluntary spending limits and public financing for candidates who adhere to them.

The House's 259 to 165 vote to approve the bill, which occurred on April 9, is 31 votes shy of the number needed to override a certain veto by President Bush.

The bill would also restrict state-party fundraising and the amount candidates can collect from political-action committees. The latter provision would curb the political power of interest groups, such as the national teachers' unions, that have active PACs. Republicans have proposed eliminating PAC contributions.

The bill does not include measures to pay for public financing, a cost that is estimated at $100 million to $200 million per election cycle, and includes different spending rules for the House and Senate, another idea opposed by Republicans.

Each chamber approved its own bill last year, but the issue lay dormant until voter outrage over abuses of Congressional perquisites revived it.

Vol. 11, Issue 31

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