House Passes Rescission Package
Image by faithsmessenger.com

The House of Representatives voted late Thursday night to pass a proposal that would rescind almost $15 billion in federal funding.  The Spending Cuts to Expired and Unnecessary Programs Act (H.R. 3) was based on a request sent to Congress from President Trump, who had said he was unhappy with the size of the fiscal year 2018 spending package passed by Congress in March.

The legislation would claw back unused funds and those whose spending authorization has expired but does not impact any education funding.  Though fiscal conservatives welcomed the proposal, some Democrats expressed concern that rolling back unused funds for the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) could lead to a loss of coverage if enrollment is higher than expected. House leadership, meanwhile, said that no child would lose insurance due to spending cutbacks.  An analysis from the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) agreed, concluding that the rescission would not impact coverage. 

The CBO analysis also noted that because the funds were unobligated or expired, cancelling their budget authority would not actually impact federal outlays.  There is also concern that removing that spending authority could make it harder to pass future spending measures. 

Before it becomes law, the Senate would have to pass its own rescission bill.  Senate Appropriators have not yet committed to doing so.

Resources: JulieGrace Brufke and Niv Elis, “House Passes Trump’s Proposal to Claw Back $15 Billion in Spending,” The Hill, June 7, 2018.
Author: JCM

About the Author

Julia Martin is an attorney with the Washington, DC law firm of Brustein & Manasevit, PLLC. Established in 1980, the Firm is nationally recognized for its federal education regulatory and legislative practice, providing legal advice regarding compliance with all major federal education programs as well as the federal grants management requirements, including the Education Department General Administrative Regulations (EDGAR). In addition, they work with agencies on federal spending flexibility, allowability, policies and procedures, audit defense and resolution and legislative updates. The Firm provides government relations services for the National Title I Association.