March 21-25: a week when U.S. Senators and Reps will be home. They need to hear from you!
Members of Congress will come home, just having voted to keep the government running for another 3 weeks (until April 8). This three week funding bill cut another $6 billion, but this time they mostly avoided cuts in child and family programs. This new approach of funding the federal government a few weeks at a time could not be less efficient – agencies are being given small allocations, anticipating later cuts to come; they cannot sign leases or plan. Both the president and leaders in Congress say the next vote on this year’s budget will be the last, and will fund the government through September, the end of the fiscal year.
There remains a substantial risk that they could still adopt the cuts passed initially by the House of Representatives. If so, children’s programs will be hit hard. And some in Congress will propose even bigger budget cuts for FY 2012, including Medicaid, along with more cuts in domestic programs. Senators and Reps have cast votes either for or against the House-passed spending plan (H.R. 1). If they voted for it, they voted to deny Head Start to 218,000 children, to prevent 11 million people from getting health care from Community Health Centers, and to reduce or eliminate Pell Grants for 9.4 million low-income college students.
Click here to see the full impact of H.R. 1.
To see how your Senators voted on these cuts, click here
For more information on the impact of H.R. 1, click here.