- The Washington Times - Monday, February 2, 2004

Note: Discretionary spending may exceed net spending in some cases, reflecting fees and other income not included in the federal budget.

Department of Agriculture

Net spending: $83.3 billion,

up 6.2 percent

• Would cut discretionary spending from $20.7 billion this year to $19.1 billion, a decrease of 8.1 percent, the biggest cut for a major government agency

• Would cut the Crop Insurance Fund by 6.9 percent, to $3.7 billion

• Would add $60 million for programs targeting mad cow disease

Commerce Department

Net spending: $5.8 billion,

down 1 percent

• Discretionary spending by the department would fall 1 percent to $5.7 billion. The other $100 million in the department’s budget is for programs already mandated in existing law.

• Would provide $180 million extra to the Census Bureau for continued improvements to the design of the 2010 census and the information it provides

• Would provide $12.2 million to the Bureau of Economic Analysis to improve the accuracy and timeliness of key economic indicators

• Would cut money available for grant programs under the National Telecommunications and Information Administration

Department of Defense

Net spending: $402.6 billion,

up 7 percent (excludes most

costs for Iraq and Afghanistan)

• Includes $10.2 billion for missile defense. Some of the money would pay for the deployment of a batch of long-range missile interceptors at Fort Greely, Alaska, and Vandenberg Air Force Base, Calif. The Pentagon expects to have 20 interceptors in place at the two locations by the end of 2005. These missiles are designed to shoot down intercontinental ballistic missiles fired by North Korea.

• Would fund a 3.5 percent base pay raise for military personnel

• Includes $1.2 billion to develop the Army’s RAH-66 Comanche combat and scout helicopter

• Would spend $3.1 billion on the F/A-18 Hornet program. The money includes the purchase of 42 of the carrier-based fighters.

• Includes almost $3.2 billion for an Army modernization program called Future Combat Systems, which is developing an array of military gear for soldiers to use in 2010 and afterward. This is nearly double this year’s spending.

• Would spend $4.2 billion on the F/A-22 Raptor program. The money would fund the purchase of 24 of the next-generation Air Force fighter.

• Would spend $1.9 billion on unmanned aerial vehicles, a $600 million increase over this year

• Would spend $4.5 billion on the Joint Strike Fighter, a next-generation all-purpose fighter

• Would spend $1.7 billion on the V-22 Osprey, a tilt-rotor aircraft sought by the Marines and Air Force. It has sustained several deadly crashes in development. The funding, slightly higher than this year, would buy 11 aircraft.

Department of Education

Net spending: $66.4 billion,

up 5 percent

• Includes $57.3 billion, a $1.64 billion increase over the final congressional appropriation last month for fiscal 2004, for federally funded school reform programs, special education, Pell grants for college students, and other key education programs

• The administration seeks $13.3 billion, a $1 billion increase, for disadvantaged school districts under Title I and the No Child Left Behind Act. The Pell grant program would rise $890 million, and special education state grants would be increased $1 billion to a total of $11.1 billion.

• The budget includes a new $50 million Choice Incentive Fund intended for cities and states that want to implement school-voucher demonstration programs similar to the District’s federally funded plan, and a $100 million fund to encourage private-sector lending for the purchase of charter-school facilities.

Energy Department

Net spending: $22.1 billion,

up 5.3 percent

• Discretionary spending on all Energy Department programs would increase by 1.2 percent, to a total of $23.6 billion.

• Would boost spending by 4.4 percent, to $9 billion, for the semiautonomous National Nuclear Security Administration

• Calls for spending $7.4 billion for environmental cleanup of radioactive waste left over from Cold War nuclear-weapons production, an increase of $373 million, or 5.3 percent, over last year

• Would spend $303 million, 52.5 percent more than Congress is providing this year, to move ahead with a proposed nuclear-waste site in Nevada. Much of that money would go toward obtaining a federal permit for the project.

• Calls for $287 million for research into clean-coal technology, a 60 percent increase from last year, as part of a 10-year, $2 billion program

• Would provide $228 million, or 43 percent more than last year, as part of a $1.7 billion, five-year program to promote development of hydrogen fuel cells for cars and small power stations

• Proposes spending $502 million, or 22 percent less than last year, for research into the long-term health and environmental consequences of energy use and development. This includes programs for global climate change; air, land and marine environments; and biological effects of radiation.

Department of Homeland Security

Net spending: $40.2 billion,

up 10 percent

• That amount includes $2.5 billion to defend against bioterrorism, $890 million to improve aviation security, $411 million for port and border security, and $340 million for the US VISIT program to collect and monitor biometric data from incoming visa holders.

• The budget also includes $3.6 billion for state and local agencies, including local police and firefighters, which is more than $800 million smaller than the 2004 budgeted amount.

Department of Health and Human Services

Net spending: $571.6 billion,

up 2.7 percent

• Discretionary spending on all HHS programs would decrease by 1.6 percent, to $68.2 billion.

• Would decrease spending for the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention by $408 million, or 8.9 percent

• Would increase spending at the Food and Drug Administration by $109 million, or 7.9 percent, including an additional $8.3 million for enforcement of animal-feed regulations designed to prevent the spread of mad cow disease

• Would increase spending on defense against bioterror attacks by $160 million, or 4 percent, focusing on rapid detection and enhanced border security

More than 85 percent of the HHS budget is for mandatory payments for Medicare and Medicaid, the government health-insurance programs for seniors and the poor, respectively.

The administration is saying that the overhaul of Medicare and a new prescription-drug benefit for seniors will cost one-third more than predicted over 10 years — $534 billion instead of $395 billion. The difference in the 2005 spending year would be $7 billion.

The Bush administration proposes allocating up to $360 million a year to support healthy marriages and family formation. This includes a grant program (with state match) of $240 million and $120 million for pro-marriage research and demonstration projects.

The 2005 pro-marriage proposals are $60 million greater than 2004 proposals. Most of the funding comes from discontinued welfare programs.

Department of Housing and Urban Development

Net spending: $34 billion,

down 1.9 percent

• Would increase discretionary spending by 3.9 percent, to $31.3 billion. The remaining $2.7 billion in the HUD budget would fund programs already mandated by law.

• Would increase funding for the Housing Certificate Fund, which includes a popular housing-voucher program that helps low-income families pay rent, by 9 percent, to $16.9 billion

• Would revamp housing-voucher programs with a goal of giving local and state housing authorities more flexibility in helping low-income families

• Proposes $50 million extra to help move chronically homeless persons into permanent housing with supportive services

The budget proposes eliminating the HOPE IV program, which is charged with improving severely distressed public housing units. The administration says the program achieved its primary goal of demolishing 100,000 severely distressed public-housing units, but is slow at completing the job and “more costly than other alternatives.”

About 2 million families receive the housing vouchers. HUD says changes are needed in the voucher programs to give local agencies more flexibility in helping low-income families, but critics fear the proposal may result in far fewer families getting vouchers.

Environmental Protection Agency

Net spending: $7.6 billion,

down 8.9 percent

• Discretionary spending on all EPA programs would decrease by 7.2 percent, to a total of $7.8 billion.

• Would boost spending from $5 million this year to $65 million in fiscal 2005 for a new program to reduce diesel emissions from school buses

• Proposes spending 9.9 percent more, or $1.4 billion, for Superfund cleanups not paid for by polluters found responsible for some of the nation’s worst contamination

The department’s 8.9 percent decrease in overall spending would result primarily from a $492 million reduction in low-interest loans to states and communities for clean-water pollution-control projects. Funding would drop from $1.3 billion to $850 million.

Department of Justice

Net spending: $21.8 billion,

down 12.7 percent

Discretionary spending on all Justice Department programs would decrease by 3.1 percent, to a total of $18.7 billion.

• Would boost spending on counterterrorism programs by 19 percent, to $2.6 billion

• Would increase the FBI budget by 11 percent, to $5.1 billion, including an increase of $60 million for counterterrorism investigations, $55 million to combat cyber-crime and $52 million for counterintelligence and counterespionage programs

• Proposes adding 123 Drug Enforcement Administration agents and support staff at a cost of $35 million to restore drug investigations to their pre-September 11 strength.

Much of the proposed spending increases for the Justice Department and FBI reflect the top two priorities of combating terrorism and foreign espionage.

Department of Labor

Net spending: $57.3 billion,

down 4.5 percent

• Would increase discretionary spending by 1.3 percent, to $11.9 billion. The other $45.4 billion in the labor budget is to fund programs already mandated by law.

• Would add $79 million to job training and employment services, includes $250 million for a new community-college initiative to train workers in high-growth fields. Would provide $50 million to provide personal re-employment accounts. The program was proposed last year but did not get funded. This time, a pilot program is proposed.

• Would change how job-training programs are administered, by cutting migrant and seasonal farm-worker programs and youth-opportunity grants and consolidating them into general block-grant programs that would let states decide how to spend the money

• Would cut $79 million from the Bureau of International Labor Affairs, which promotes labor standards internationally and supports efforts to combat child labor

• Would raise civil monetary penalties for child-labor violations and mine-safety violations, and for late filing of financial reports by unions and employers

National Endowment for the Humanities

Net spending: $162 million,

up 20 percent

• Includes $33 million for the agency’s “We the People” program, designed to encourage the teaching of American history, culture and ideas. This would be the largest competitive grant program in the agency’s 39-year history.

National Aeronautics and Space Administration

Net spending: $16.2 billion,

up 5.6 percent

NASA’s budget would increase by nearly $900 million, reflecting President Bush’s plan to refocus the agency on returning to the moon and then exploring Mars and beyond in coming decades.

In addition to the increase, NASA is planning to reallocate $11 billion over the next five years for the effort.

The budget for fiscal 2005 includes $4.1 billion for space science, encompassing $1.2 billion for solar-system exploration, $691 million for Mars and $70 million for moon preparations.

Spaceflight also would see a boost, from $5.8 billion to $6.6 billion.

Social Security Administration

Net spending: $53.7 billion,

up 10.7 percent

• Discretionary spending would increase by 5.9 percent to $7.6 billion. The other $46.1 billion in the Social Security budget is for programs already mandated by existing law. Social Security payments, which are estimated to total $519 billion next year, are not considered part of the federal budget.

• Would increase spending for the Office of the Inspector General to focus on investigating and prosecuting identity-theft crimes

• Would increase administrative spending to increase productivity, detect and prevent erroneous payments, decrease backlogs and help administer the new Medicare prescription-drug benefit

State Department and International Assistance

Net spending: $30.4 billion,

down 34.8 percent

• Spending on foreign assistance next year would fall to about $19 billion from this year’s $36 billion, which includes more than $18 billion that Mr. Bush received from Congress to rebuild Iraq and Afghanistan. Included in the figure for next year is about $5.7 billion in military and economic aid to front-line allies in the war on terrorism and $1.2 billion for rebuilding Afghanistan.

• Provides $750 million for refugee programs and $2.8 billion for fighting HIV/AIDS treatment and prevention in the most afflicted countries in Africa and the Caribbean

• Provides $659 million to strengthen the security of diplomatic personnel and facilities against terrorism. It also includes $836 million for border security, including $17 million to create 63 foreign-service jobs overseas to screen prospective visitors and immigrants.

• Includes $1.2 billion for contributions to the United Nations and 43 other international organizations

• Provides $650 million to pay the U.S. share of projected costs for U.N. peacekeeping missions in Europe, the Middle East and Asia

Department of Transportation

Net spending: $58.4 billion,

down 0.3 percent

• Would cut discretionary spending by 3.9 percent, to 13.3 billion

• Would increase spending on highways and public transit over the next six years from $247 billion to $256 billion

• Would cut by 13.6 percent the Federal Aviation Administration’s budget for modernizing air-traffic control equipment and facilities

• Would cut Amtrak funding from $1.2 billion to $900 million, or 25 percent, unless the administration’s proposal to restructure the nation’s passenger railway is adopted. Then, funding would increase to $1.4 billion.

Treasury Department

Net spending: $396.5 billion,

up 7.3 percent

• Discretionary spending for the department’s agencies — the biggest slice of which goes to the Internal Revenue Service — would total $10.8 billion, down slightly from $11.2 billion in 2004.

• The biggest chunk of money — $350 billion — goes for interest payments to finance the nation’s debt, which now stands at around $7 trillion.

• The budget would provide $300 million to go after tax cheats — especially those involved in illegal tax shelters — and to increase the number of audits to ensure compliance with tax laws. About $285 million would be provided to continuing modernizing the Internal Revenue Service’s computer systems.

• The budget would provide $65 million to the Treasury’s Financial Crimes Enforcement Network, which plays a role in the government’s efforts to put terrorist financiers and money launderers out of business. That is $8 million more than the 2004 estimate.

Department of Veterans Affairs

Net spending: $65.3 billion,

up 8.3 percent

• Would increase discretionary spending on veterans programs by 1.8 percent, to $29.7 billion

• Proposes a $250 annual enrollment fee for veterans with the highest incomes and no service-connected health issues

• Would increase co-payments for outpatient pharmacy services for high-income veterans to $15 per 30-day supply of medication. The current pharmacy co-payment is $7.

• Would eliminate waiting lists for veterans seeking medical care this year

From combined dispatches

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