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Appropriations Chairs Push for Early Decision on Overall Spending Level

November 8, 2013—House Appropriations Chair Hal Rogers (R-Ky.) and Senate Appropriations Chair Barbara Mikulski (D-Md.) sent an Oct. 31 letter urging the House-Senate budget conferees to agree on an FY 2014 302(a) overall discretionary number that is common to both the House and the Senate “by no later than December 2 and preferably by November 22” to allow the appropriations committees to finish work on the FY 2014 spending bills.

The letter states the Dec. 13 target date for the budget conference to complete its work would leave only a month to conference and pass the 12 annual appropriations bills before the current continuing resolution expires. The letter also notes that either the House or the Senate will be out of session for three of those four weeks.

While the chairs said the appropriations committees “will try with all our might to meet this tight deadline, it is clear that a much better product would result with additional time … to conference these critical bills.”

Chairman Rogers and Chairwoman Mikulski also asked for a topline number for FY 2015, to “avoid the situation we encountered this year” — in which the disparity between the House and Senate’s topline numbers impeded progress on appropriations bills.

“We believe that if an agreement on a discretionary spending number can be reached early, it will allow for more thoughtful and responsible spending decisions, set the parameters for the budgetary savings that need to be reached in your Budget Conference, and build momentum for a larger budget agreement that addresses the nation’s wide range of fiscal challenges,” the letter stated.


Dave Moore
Senior Director, Government Relations
Telephone: 202-828-0559


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Jason Kleinman
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Telephone: 202-903-0806