From the President’s Office – 9/13/2012
Every year, August is so quiet in the Washington area that you could probably hear a pin drop from the White House to the Washington Monument. Then, like clockwork, September hits and a flurry of activity starts. This year is no different; things are cranking up. You can’t even get a seat on the Metro this week!
Congress reconvened on Monday after their August recess, beginning their last few weeks before the November election. We anticipate that a number of votes will occur during this short time period. This week the House is expected to pass a six-month stop gap funding measure to keep federal agencies working through the end of next March 2013, and the Senate is expected to approve it next week. The continuing resolution (CR) maintains funding for programs in last year’s appropriations laws, with a 0.6% across-the-board increase for all agencies. However, given the uncertainty that exists because of the impending budget sequester, agencies will likely budget conservatively at the 80-90% level, until the spending bills and sequestration plans are in place. Speaking of the sequester, the Administration is expected to issue a report this week detailing how $109 billion in automatic spending cuts would be implemented next year. This report was due last week but was delayed, according to the White House, due to the complex nature of determining the impacts down to the program and project level. We will be sure to report to you promptly the projected impacts on the ocean science community when the report is released.
It is really beautiful around here now and just beginning to feel like fall. Wherever you are, I hope you enjoy your fall weekend.