The Budget Crisis: An Update from Capitol Hill
April 7, 2011
By Autism Society
The current Continuing Resolution (CR) funding federal government operations is set to expire at midnight on Friday, April 8. Negotiations continue to seek agreement on final funding levels for the remaining six months of FY 2011. Little, if any, progress is being reported and, most recent indications are that the House leaders are asking for an additional $7 billion in cuts, over and above the $33 million that Senate leaders and the White House apparently had previously agreed to.
On April 5th, 2011, the House Appropriations Committee released yet another CR that would fund the government for another week and make $12 billion in cuts, including at least $346 million from CDC and nearly $19 million in, as yet unspecified cuts, from HRSA.
It is unclear whether Congress would approve this CR and, President Obama has indicated the Administration’s initial opposition. So, if no agreement can be reached by Friday, April 8, 2011, the federal government will grind to a halt and shut down, effective Saturday.
The impact of a federal shutdown on state government operations would be profound. The Autism Society will continue to keep you updated as events unfold, and we will advocate that draconian cuts to public health programs will do more harm than good.
Additionally, on April 5, 2011, House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan (R-WI) released the House’s Fiscal Year 2012 Budget Resolution that provides a non-binding roadmap for spending levels in FY 2012 and beyond. This resolution proposes to reduce spending by $5.8 trillion over the next decade, and includes the following highlights:
• Repeal of the Affordable Care Act (ACA)
• Converts the federal share of Medicaid spending into a block grant indexed for inflation and population growth. In addition to creating a block grant, the budget proposal rolls back the Medicaid expansion authorized by the ACA.
• Holds overall domestic discretionary spending below 2008 levels and holds this category of funding to a five-year freeze. Holding overall spending to 2008 levels would have a dramatic impact on maternal and child health programs because less money will be available. The budget also proposes a binding cap on total spending as a percentage of the economy.
The House Budget Committee will mark up this resolution on April 6, 2011. Then, full House is expected to vote on it next week. While this will shape debate, the House resolution is not expected to be adopted in the Senate where Budget Chairman Kent Conrad (D-ND) will release the Senate’s budget proposal in upcoming weeks and a bi-partisan solution on debt reduction may emerge before the end of this year.
April 10, 2013
The Autism Society, the nation’s largest and oldest grassroots autism organization, has chosen Pittsburgh as the host city of its 44th annual conference on autism spectrum disorders.
April 5, 2013
Individuals with autism can attend the Autism Society National Conference and Exposition (in Pittsburgh) for FREE this year! Learn more: www.autism-society.org/conference.
April 3, 2013
Monarch Teaching Technologies, the makers of VizZle®, web-based educational software for visual learners with autism, will give one-year of free VizZle to every new (or renewing) Champion Member during April.
April 2, 2013
Read the Autism Society’s digital magazine about autism spectrum disorders!
April 2, 2013
Today, throughout the world, individuals will come together highlighting the needs and dreams of people living with autism.