Fiscal 17 Done – Fiscal 18 in the Wings

This post was originally published on this site

Last Friday, May, 5, the President signed the FY 17 Omnibus Appropriations Act into law (PL 115-31).  Text of the measure is available at https://www.congress.gov/115/bills/hr244/BILLS-115hr244enr.pdf.  EPA funding appears as Division G, Title II.  Report language is also available and can be found at https://rules.house.gov/sites/republicans.rules.house.gov/files/115/OMNI/DIVISION%20G%20-%20INT%20SOM%20FY17%20OCR.pdf.

Now that the FY 17 is a wrap, Congress has begun to turn to funding decisions for FY 18 that begins this October 1.  The Administration is expected to release its FY 18 budget request during the week of May 22.  Speculation is rampant as to the content of the request.  Will EPA see a 31% across the board cut?  Will some programs be zeroed out?  Will PWSS funds decrease?  Will DWSRF funds increase?  The range if “what ifs” is pretty broad and anticipation for the bill’s content continues to grow.

Meanwhile, the House and Senate still need to pass their respective budget resolutions.  These resolutions provide a general outline of overall funding for each of the Appropriations Subcommittees.  At present, there does not appear to be much consensus in either Chamber as to how to approach the funding allocations.  Normally, the House and Senate would have already determined overall funding levels and have begun to hold hearings on key elements of the various programs.  With more district work periods, holiday periods, and the traditional August recess, it remains to be seen if Congress can avoid taking on yet another string of continuing resolutions for FY 18 funding.

Anthony R. DeRosa

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