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CTE Policy Watch

House and Senate Pass FY 14 Budgets



By: Mitch

Recently, both the House and Senate approved their respective budget resolutions for Fiscal Year (FY) 2014. These resolutions set the overall discretionary spending caps for the coming fiscal year and establish the total amount of funding that will be available for programs like Perkins. While both resolutions incorporate lower funding totals—$92 billion below the discretionary cap created under Budget Control Act of 2011—for FY 2014 as a result of sequestration, the two plans offer radically different proposals for funding of important domestic programs that support education, workforce training and CTE.

The House budget resolution, created by budget committee chairman Paul Ryan (R-WI), proposes to reduce funding for domestic programs by $50 billion below what would be required by sequestration in order to protect defense spending from being cut. The Ryan budget sets the goal of achieving a balanced budget in 10 years which it does primarily through reductions in discretionary funding. In his budget blueprint, Rep. Ryan lends support to the SKILLS Act which he argues will “improve accountability by calling for consolidation of duplicative federal job-training programs into a more target career scholarship program.” The House approved the resolution on INSERT DATE by a vote of 221 to 207, with no Democrats voting in favor.

In the Senate, Sen. Patty Murray (D-WA), who took over as chairman of the Budget Committee in January, brought her first budget resolution to the full chamber last week. The Senate plan more evenly distributes funding between defense and non-defense programs. It puts forward various proposals for deficit reduction and economic stimulus to be paid for with a combination of increased tax revenue and targeted reductions in spending. The Murray budget calls for “continued investment in literary, STEM and career and technical education programs.” It also recommends “$10 billion to invest in worker training programs for young people and adults to expand their skills and allow them to move into one of the approximately 3.6 million job opening that businesses across the country are struggling to fill.”

Just after five o’clock in the morning on Saturday, March 23, the Senate passed this budget resolution, its first in four years, with a razor-thin 50 to 49 vote. Though under normal procedure the two chambers would work to create a consensus budget plan, the stark differences between the resolutions passed in the House and Senate make that unlikely. It is now up to House and Senate appropriators to determine funding for individual programs and activities, like Perkins, for FY 2014. 

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CTE Policy Watch Blog

Duncan Talks 2014 Budget on Capitol Hill

8/12/13 By: Mitch Following the release of President Obama’s Fiscal Year (FY) 2014 budget request on Wednesday, Secretary of Education Arne Duncan appeared before the House Labor, Health and Human Services, and Education Appropriations Subcommittee to defend the Administration’s plan for funding education in the coming fiscal year. In the budget proposal, the Administration suggests funding Perkins at 1.1 billion, equal to FY 2012 levels, before sequestration. Additionally, the budget proposes a $10 million increase for the National Programs line item which is designated for a new dual enrollment program focused on career preparation. Despite requests for an overall increase in education funding, the Administration's budget does not prioritize additional investments to meet the growing needs in CTE. During the hearing on Thursday, both Republican and Democratic members of the Labor-HHS-Education appropriations subcommittee expressed apprehensions about the Administration’s strong focus on increasing funding for competitive grant programs. Rep. Rosa DeLauro (D-CT), ranking-member of the subcommittee, talked about her concern for formula-funded education programs, like Perkins, which largely did not receive increases in funding. “The emphasis on competitive funding I find troubling,” said DeLauro. “What is need is steady secure funding for all of our schools to move toward improvement.” Federal investments in education must be directed to those areas with a proven track record of success that provide all students with equal access and opportunity. Members of the subcommittee will now begin to draft an appropriations bill that will fund Perkins in FY 2014. Let Congress know that it is time to make investing in Perkins a priority!

Senator Mark Begich (D-AK) Announces Career Counseling Bill

In a press release today, Senator Mark Begich (D-AK) announced a bill designed to improve school counseling resources across the country. The Counseling for Career Choice Act of 2013 provides increased support and professional development for school counselors to have the resources and materials to help students make educated decisions about their future, whether it is a four-year university, career and technical education program in high school or other option.


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