Appropriations Update - FY2013 Work Complete

Although more than six months behind schedule, this afternoon the House overwhelmingly passed the six-month Continuing Resolution (CR), shutting the door on FY2013 appropriations. Although the CR maintains spending cuts required by sequestration, the final version of the CR gives the Departments of Defense, Veterans Affairs, Agriculture, Commerce, Justice and the National Institutes of Health new spending flexibility, thus giving those agencies some flexibility in implementing the cuts. All other agencies will be required to continue implementing the cuts in an across-the-board manner. The bill will now go the President for his signature, ensuring the government will not face a shutdown when current funding was set to expire on March 27.

There are two notable changes that affect AEO members included in the Senate bill:

  • Sec. 1306 increases the amount available to the SBA for 7(a) and other guaranteed loans (including Community Advantage loans) by 61% over FY2012 levels. This is an increase of $126.5 million for FY2013 to a total of $333.6 million.
  • Sec. 1308 would provide appropriations for the CDFI Fund’s Bond Guarantee program at a level of $500 million, or half of the program’s originally intended $1 billion (as contained in the Small Business Jobs Act of 2010).

Because the Financial Services and General Government appropriations bill was not included in the final version of the CR, funding programs operated by the Small Business Administration and the Department of Treasury’s Community Development Financial Institutions (CDFI) Fund will remain funded at current (FY2012) funding levels through the end of the year minus the 5% spending cuts required by sequestration. It is important to note that the effective spending cut is approximately 9%, due to the fact that the cuts are being applied over seven months, instead of the originally planned nine months. For a look at programs AEO follows and their FY2012 funding levels, please click here.

The Congress will now pivot to work on FY2014 Budgets. The House of Representatives passed their FY2014 Budget, introduced by Budget Committee Chair Paul Ryan (R-WI) earlier today. The Senate has begun debating their FY2014 Budget, and a final vote is expected sometime tomorrow. Congress will then leave Washington for a two-week Easter Recess.