On April 2, the House Budget Committee held a nearly nine hour mark up on Chair Paul Ryan’s (R-WI) “Path to Prosperity” FY15 budget resolution. During the mark up, Committee members questioned Committee staff on the proposed bill, which would make broad cuts and to social programs such as food stamps and Pell education grants, repeal the Affordable Care Act, increase the defense budget, and maintain large tax breaks for wealthy individuals and businesses.
During opening statements, Representative Ryan and other Republicans on the committee praised the budget resolution, which they claim will balance the budget in ten years. Committee Democrats called the bill “dangerous.” Ranking Member Chris Van Hollen (D-MD) spent most of the hearing decrying the budget framework as a fraud that would not balance the budget as Republicans promise. He said that while the proposed budget eliminates the benefits of the Affordable Care Act, it would maintains the taxes and savings from the Act in order to have enough revenue to achieve the claim of a balanced budget.
Representative Ryan’s proposed budget includes several sections on housing, including “winding down” and privatizing Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, as well as making “responsible reforms to housing assistance programs” including expanding the Moving to Work program to more public housing agencies. The budget resolution also proposes reforms to the Community Development Block Grants (CDBG), such as instituting maximum community poverty rates for eligibility and excluding communities with high average incomes from receiving funding.
The Committee passed the Path to Prosperity FY15 budget resolution by a partisan vote of 22 to 17. A floor vote on the budget resolution is expected the week of April 7. However, the latest Ryan budget will have little effect on this year’s appropriations. First, the Senate is not expected to pass another FY15 budget resolution as the Bipartisan Budget Act of 2013, enacted in December 2013, includes both FY14 and FY15 federal budget guidelines (see Memo, 12/20/13). Second, Mr. Ryan’s bill does not violate the agreement he reached on FY15 with Senate Budget Committee Chairman Patty Murray (D-WA) in the Bipartisan Budget Act of 2013.
Read the proposed “Path to Prosperity” here: http://budget.house.gov/uploadedfiles/fy15_blueprint.pdf
Watch the full committee mark up here: http://1.usa.gov/1ilrmrB