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Posts Tagged ‘debt ceiling agreement’

Budget Negotiators Set Sights on Sequester Relief

  • November 24, 2013
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The lead negotiators for the House-Senate budget conference are continuing to attempt to reach an agreement that would set discretionary spending levels through fiscal 2015 and undo a portion of the sequester cuts over that period. The limited agreement would avoid hot-button issues such as tax increases and entitlement reforms, and instead would rely on user fee increases, federal asset sales and a mix of spending reductions to offset the sequester, reported CQ. House Budget Chairman Paul Ryan (R-Wis.) and Senate Budget Chairwoman Patty Murray (D-Wash.) have discussed a number of scenarios, but so far have not struck a deal. The two plan to continue their talks through the Thanksgiving break …

CR at FY’14 Sequester Levels is Backup Plan if No Budget Deal Emerges, Boehner Says

  • November 21, 2013
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The House would advance a continuing resolution (CR) at the fiscal 2014 level of sequestration if the House-Senate budget conference fails to reach agreement on a budget for the year, Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) said Thursday. Under that scenario, the House would move a stopgap spending bill for FY 2014 with a topline figure of $967 billion, reported CQ. The federal government now is operating under a CR at last year’s spending level, $986 billion …

Pentagon to Force Issue over Shrinking Funding Levels in FY’15 Budget Request

  • November 20, 2013
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In its first spending plan acknowledging the long-term spending constraints imposed under sequestration, the Pentagon is expected to call for cuts in an array of benefits for military personnel as part of its fiscal 2015 budget request, including education, healthcare and housing. The spending proposal would offer a multi-year plan to trim benefit levels …

Little Opportunity for Budget Conference to Reach Deal

  • November 19, 2013
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The House-Senate budget conference may not meet again until less than a week is left before its Dec. 13 deadline to come to agreement over a fiscal 2014 budget. That lack of public activity, along with reports of the slow pace of private talks between House Budget Chairman Paul Ryan (R-Wis.), who is chairing the committee, and Senate Budget Chairwoman Patty Murray (D-Wash.), have dampened hopes the panel will strike a deal over a topline spending figure and replace at least some of the scheduled sequester cuts …

Plan to Soften Sequester’s Impact Encounters Resistance from Fellow Republicans

  • November 19, 2013
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A plan promoted by Sen. Jeff Sessions (R-Ala.) to lessen the impact sequestration is set to impose on the fiscal 2014 defense budget may not gain sufficient support from other Republicans or Democrats in the Senate. Kelly Ayotte (R-N.H.) said she would not support the amendment because it relies on cuts in defense spending in future years to offset the smaller sequester rather than reductions to entitlement programs …

Fiscal Challenges Facing Military Are Cumulative, Hagel Says

  • November 18, 2013
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The challenges facing the military, including sequestration, aging equipment and a force under stress from more than a decade of deployments, are cumulative and will become more apparent over time, Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel said Saturday. “But the effects [of curtailed training] will be felt for a long period of time to come …

Senators Craft Plan to Soften Impact of Defense Cuts

  • November 18, 2013
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Three senior GOP senators are working on an amendment to the fiscal 2014 defense authorization bill that would smooth out the $52 billion cut the Pentagon’s current year budget is scheduled to absorb under sequestration. The amendment, which would be introduced by Sens. John McCain (R-Ariz.) and Jeff Sessions (R-Ala.), is expected to call for the defense budget to take only a $26 billion hit in FY 2014, with the rest of this year’s sequester applied over the next seven fiscal years, reported CQ. If successful, the amendment would allow DOD to avoid a deep trough in its budget this year but, at the same time, limit the growth of spending to only 1 percent annually through FY 2021 …

Van Hollen Blames Republicans for Lack of Progress on Budget Talks

  • November 17, 2013
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Maryland Rep. Chris Van Hollen (D) accused Republicans of slowing progress toward a deal in the House-Senate budget conference and said the panel was not close to reaching its interim goal of hashing out a general framework for an agreement. “I worry that the House Republicans are running out the clock, and I think we’re going to begin to highlight the fact that they seem to be sitting on their hands,” Van Hollen, ranking member on the House Budget Committee, said Friday …

McKeon Insists Budget Deal Must Relax Defense Cuts

  • November 17, 2013
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Rep. Buck McKeon (R-Calif.), chairman of the Armed Services Committee, told Rep. Paul Ryan (R-Wis.) on Friday that he would not support a fiscal 2014 budget agreement that does not provide some relief from the $52 billion in defense cuts imposed under sequestration. Ryan is chairing the House-Senate budget conference charged with setting a FY 2014 topline spending level and, possibly, replacing some of the sequester cuts …

House Briefing Intended to Explain Threat Posed by Spending Cuts

  • November 14, 2013
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Twenty-eight House members attended a closed briefing from Pentagon officials on Thursday about the deleterious effects of sequester cuts on national defense. The leadership of the House Armed Services Committee sponsored the briefing, which focused on how sequestration is harming military readiness. The panel wants to use the briefings to convince their colleagues to reverse sequestration, which is slated to cut defense spending by $500 billion through fiscal 2021 …

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