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ACTE Urges Budget Conference Committee to End Sequestration


November 21, 2013


ACTE Urges Budget Conference Committee to End Sequestration

Recently, ACTE sent a letter to the chairs of the budget conference committee, Sen. Patty Murray (D-WA) and Rep. Paul Ryan (R-WI), urging them to work toward strengthening our nation’s investment in CTE by replacing the harmful sequestration cuts in the FY 2014 budget proposal currently being developed by the committee. As we previously reported, the agreement that ended the protracted government shutdown in October included the creation a conference committee of members of the House and Senate who are tasked with creating a finalized budget plan and setting overall funding levels for FY 2014. The committee will also attempt to tackle long-term budgetary issues like entitlement spending, tax reform and sequestration.

The government is currently operating on a short-term funding measure, known as a continuing resolution (CR), which will expire on January 15, 2014. Funds for federal programs, including Perkins, will remain at FY 2013 levels for the duration of the CR. Perkins funding was cut by 5.2 percent in FY 2013 due to sequestration, which resulted in a $58 million reduction in the federal support for CTE in the 2013-14 school year.

“Perkins-funded CTE programs are working to help fill positions that are available today, while preparing a qualified workforce for the careers of tomorrow,” wrote ACTE Deputy Director Steve DeWitt in the letter to the committee chairs. “A strong investment in CTE is essential to addressing this “skills gap,” and ensuring that more Americans can find rewarding careers.” He also urged the committee to work to find a balanced approach to deficit reduction that does not include further cuts to CTE.

The conference committee has been given until December 13, to create a budget plan. The appropriations committees will then have a limited amount of time to write FY 2014 funding bills, including a bill to fund Perkins, before the CR expires in January. Tell you Members of Congress that it is time to end sequestration and make investing in CTE a top priority.

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