House Appropriators Approve Subcommittee Allocations: CJS Gets Less While DOD Gets More Than FY2011

House Appropriators Approve Subcommittee Allocations: CJS Gets Less While DOD Gets More Than FY2011

The House Appropriations Committee approved the top-line allocations for each of its 12 subcommittees today. These so-called “302(b) allocations,” referring to a section of the law that created this process, are based on the amounts approved by the House in the FY2012 budget resolution for various government functions.

The Commerce-Justice-Science subcommittee, which includes NASA, received an allocation of $50.237 billion. That is $3.09 billion less than the subcommittee appropriated for FY2011 and $7.438 billion less than what President Obama requested for FY2012.

In addition to NASA, the subcommittee funds the Department of Commerce, of which NOAA is a part; the Department of Justice; the National Science Foundation; the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy (OSTP); and several other offices and commissions. The subcommittee is scheduled to markup the CJS appropriations bill on July 7 at which time it will become clearer as to which agencies and programs have to absorb the cuts. Full committee markup is scheduled for July 13.

By contrast, the Defense subcommittee is allocated about 10 times that amount — $530.025 billion. That figure is $17 billion more than FY2011. However, it is almost $9 billion less than the President requested. The Defense subcommittee is scheduled to markup its bill on June 1, with full committee mark on June 14.

The committee approved the allocations by a vote of 27-21, with all Democrats and one Republican, Rep. Jeff Flake (R-AZ), opposing it according to the National Journal (subscription required).

The Senate has not passed a budget resolution yet, and is not expected to do so. Neither chamber passed one last year and a different method was used to determine how much the subcommittees could spend.

For more information on the budget process and the steps involved in passing legislation, see our What’s a Markup? fact sheet. The Congressional Research Service also has a handy report that provides more detail on the congressional budget process.

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