House panel proposes steep funding cuts for agencies

Double-digit budget cuts could be on the horizon for several federal agencies under the spending limit draft released by the House Appropriations Committee, the Federal Times reports.

The spending cuts announced Feb. 3 for each of the panel's 12 subcommittees would save taxpayers $74 billion compared with President Barack Obama’s fiscal year 2011 request, according to a statement from the committee.

Related story:

Gates prepares more details on cuts to the defense budget

Calling the cuts “broad and deep,” the committee's chairman, Rep. Hal Rogers (R-Ky.), said he instructed each subcommittee to go line-by-line to weed out and eliminate wasteful or excess spending.

The cuts "will affect every congressional district, but they are necessary and long overdue,” Rogers said.

Likely to face major resistance by Senate Democrats and the White House, the blueprint outlines a 9 percent total cut on discretionary spending on non-defense and non-security programs compared with last year, according to Federal Times.       

On the higher end, funding for the Transportation and Housing and Urban Development departments and several smaller agencies would be cut by 17 percent, while financial services and general government would be slashed by 13 percent.

According to the report, the precise cuts, from agency to agency, should become known next week. That’s when Republicans release a spending bill to carry the government through the rest of fiscal 2011, George Behan, spokesman for the committee’s top Democrat, Rep. Norm Dicks (D-Wash.), told Federal Times.

“At the moment, we’re concerned about what the implications will be,” he said.

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Alysha Sideman is the online content producer for Washington Technology.

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Reader comments

Mon, Feb 7, 2011

Where are the cuts to Congressional Budget?? I read that they're budget which balloned in recent years is untouch! Can anyone spell hypocrites!!

Mon, Feb 7, 2011

These numbers sound big, but they're a drop in the bucket and they're nothing compared to what will come. The statistic that is mindblowing to me is this: The FY2011 appropriations are about $1.1 Trillion. The FY2011 deficit will be $1.5 Trillion. We could have shut down the entire government for the entire FY and the deficit would still be over half a trillion dollars. So how do you cut your way out of a deficit situation where you cut EVERYTHING and still have a deficit?

Mon, Feb 7, 2011

I wish they'd give a more detailed breakdown of exactly what they are going to cut. I see a 16% cut for the Department of Commerce. Well the National Weather Service is part of Commerce and if you cut 16% there plan on a lot more missed tornado, flood and storm warnings. NWS has been running a tight budget for years already and another hit isn't going to help. Unfortunately it seems like the only time Congress has any interest in increasing the NWS budget is after some big event that kills a lot of folk. No photo ops if you mitigate the harm from the disaster up front, but plenty of opportunity to show the folks back home that you are doing something if you try to fix things after a lot of people get killed.

Mon, Feb 7, 2011

Re: Reading the table correctly. The 2010 columns on the right under the heading Appropriations 302(b)s less are compared 'to' FY2010 not 'for' FY2010. The author was correct HUD is -17% compared to 2010 and -18% compared to the President's request for 2011.

Mon, Feb 7, 2011

Cuts should be deepest to the federal agencies. Most of the money is spent on salaries for many unnessary slots. What do all of the 1300 listed federal agencies do? This doesn't even count the numerous committees that are formed.

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