This Week in Budget News

This week is another busy one at OMB: we are releasing the full account-level budget on Thursday.

Close readers of this blog may be wondering: didn’t you release the budget in February? Didn’t Congress already adopt its budget resolution?

The answer is: welcome to life in a transition year. As we noted in February, that document (pdf) was a budget overview, laying out the Administration’s priorities and the broad outlines of the budget, including the agency topline numbers. What it didn’t include was the program-by-program information on the discretionary side of the ledger – nor the details on several of the Administration’s mandatory and tax policies, such as the international tax and tax compliance initiatives that were rolled out today. (The budget resolution that was adopted by Congress last week similarly provides the framework for the year, not the detailed legislation necessary to implement that framework.)

So what’s to come?

This Thursday, we will release the Appendix, which contains full programmatic detail.   In other words, we will fill in the details below the agency-by-agency topline numbers on the roughly 40 percent of the budget this coming fiscal year that will be decided upon in the appropriations process.  We will also be releasing a separate volume of terminations, reductions, and savings, highlighting the programs that we are eliminating or scaling back. These documents are critical for the appropriators on Capitol Hill to get started on filling out the details to the budget resolution they just adopted.

Then, next week, we will put out the Analytical Perspectives volume, Historical Tables, and summary tables. Analytical Perspectives provides a variety of additional information about the Nation’s fiscal policies. The Historical Tables present budget data over an extended period, generally from 1940 or earlier, to 2010 or 2014. The summary tables were already released along with the budget overview in February, but we will re-release them (with some relatively minor updates and changes) next week.

We decided to split the release of these volumes -- presenting the micro view this week, and the macro view next week -- to make it easier for the public and Capitol Hill to digest these thousands of pages of information.

No matter how it’s being rolled out, the budget includes all the information you need to assess our spending priorities and the savings we seek.  I look forward to hearing your feedback.

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