Tuesday, October 17, 2006

It's another Bush budget massacre

President Bush is fully funding his military contractor cronies and his incompetent sycophants at the Department of Homeland Security.

So what's he going to cut in his next budget to make sure those tax breaks can be preserved for his top donors? Why, programs for children and the poor, of course!

The Center on Budget and Policy Priorities suggests what could happen to pay for the $5.3 billion Congress added to the defense budget and to keep the budget at the president's requested level. Congress is supposed to finish work on the budget after the elections next month.

If Congress opts for across-the-board cuts to pay for the $5.3 billion on top of cuts already recommended, here's what would happen to some programs, according to CBPP:
  • Head Start would be cut by an additional $75 million, for a total cut of $221 million. The Labor-HHS-Education bill that the Senate Appropriations Committee approved would provide $6.789 billion in funding for Head Start for the 2007 program year. This is $146 million (or 2.1 percent) below the amount needed to maintain the 2006 level of funding (excluding emergency funding related to hurricane Katrina that was provided for 2006), adjusted for inflation. In other words, the funding level for Head Start contained in the Senate bill already is $146 billion below the CBO current services baseline. An additional 1.1 percent across-the-board cut would reduce funding for the program by another $75 million, bringing the total reduction to $221 million (or 3.2 percent).
  • Education for the Disadvantaged (Title I) would be cut an additional $159 million, for a total cut of $479 million. The Labor-HHS-Education bill passed by the Senate Appropriations Committee would provide $14.447 billion for Education for the Disadvantaged. This level of funding is $320 million (or 2.2 percent) below the amount needed to maintain the 2006 level of funding, adjusted for inflation. A further 1.1 percent reduction would cut funding for the program by an additional $159 million, bringing the total reduction to $479 million (or 3.2 percent).
  • Pell Grants would be cut by an additional $139 million, for a total cut of $864 million. The Labor-HHS-Education bill approved by the Senate Appropriations Committee provides $12.607 billion in funding for Pell Grants for 2007. That level of funding is $725 million (5.4 percent) below the amount that would be needed to maintain the 2006 level of funding adjusted for inflation. A further 1.1 percent reduction would reduce funding for the program by an additional $139 million, bringing the total cut below the baseline to $864 million, or 6.5 percent.
  • The National Institutes of Health would be cut by an additional $315 million, for a total cut of $666 million. The Labor-HHS-Education and Interior bills approved by the Senate Appropriations Committee provide $28.629 billion in funding for NIH for 2007. That level of funding is $351 million (1.2 percent) below the amount needed to maintain the 2006 level of funding adjusted for inflation. A further 1.1 percent reduction would reduce funding for the program by an additional $315 million, bringing the total cut below the baseline to $666 million, or 2.3 percent.

Doesn't that make you just feel all warm and fuzzy inside?

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