The U.S. Senate also moved quickly with its appropriations work as soon as it reconvened on September 6.
On September 7, the Senate Committee on Appropriations set the 302b allocations for its 12 subcommittees. The Committee provided a $55.25 billion allocation for the Transportation, Housing and Urban Development, and Related Agencies (T-HUD) subcommittee, 1%, or $117 million, lower than FY11. The President requested $677 million more than the Senate’s allocation. The Senate T-HUD appropriations subcommittee may mark-up its bill the week of September 12 or September 19.
Immediately after establishing the 302b allocations, the Committee marked up the Agriculture bill. The Agriculture subcommittee reported out its bill to the full committee without holding a subcommittee mark up. The Agriculture, Rural Development, Food and Drug, and Related Agencies subcommittee allocation is $19.780 billion, $141 million or around 1%, below FY11. The President’s request for FY12 was $2.2 billion higher than the Senate allocation.
The bill provides $904.6 million for the Section 521 Rural Rental Assistance program, $2 million below the President’s FY12 budget request but $51 million below FY11. The Senate figure is significantly higher than the House’s proposed funding level of $890 million, a $65 million cut below the FY11 funding level (see Memo, 5/27).
Under the committee-passed bill, the Section 515 Rental Housing program would receive $65 million, $30 million below the President’s FY12 request but only a $5 million cut below the FY11 funding level.
The Section 514 and Section 516 Farm Labor Housing programs would also see a decrease under the Senate bill. The Section 514 program would be funded at $23 million, a $4 million decrease below both the President’s FY12 request and the FY11 funding levels. The Section 516 program would receive $8 million, nearly $2 million below the Administration’s request.
No amendments related to the rural housing service programs were offered in the committee mark-up. The bill was reported out of Committee favorably by a vote of 28 to 2.
Ordinarily, the next step in the legislative process is for the Senate to bring the bill to the floor where further amendments may be offered and the final bill put to a vote. However, because the end of the fiscal year is fast approaching, the Senate likely will not have time to consider each appropriations bill individually by September 30, and the bills will instead be wrapped into an omnibus bill.
View the Senate 302b allocations: http://appropriations.senate.gov/news.cfm?method=news.view&id=8cccdd10-cc67-4d10-be51-ea5c1e496717
View the Senate Agriculture bill summary: http://www.appropriations.senate.gov/news.cfm?method=news.view&id=8af3a7f2-4f62-4dab-ba9f-108744d63c58
View the Committee bill at: http://www.gpo.gov/fdsys/pkg/CRPT-112srpt73/pdf/CRPT-112srpt73.pdf