House and Senate Pass FY 14 Budgets
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.
CTE Policy Watch Blog
Administration’s Budget Proposal Restores Sequester Cut to CTE Funding but Still Falls Short of Need
Earlier today, the Obama Administration released its budget proposal
for FY 2014. This document, normally released in February but delayed
due to the other fiscal issues in play this spring, outlines the
Administration's spending priorities for the coming year.
Duncan Talks 2014 Budget on Capitol Hill
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
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