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United States Federal Budget

United States Federal Budget

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Published by Tammy Nam
Great information about the federal budget. Source: wikipedia.
Great information about the federal budget. Source: wikipedia.

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Published by: Tammy Nam on Apr 07, 2011
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United States federal budget1
United States federal budget
Fiscal Year 2010 U.S. Federal Spending Projections- Cash or Budget Basis.Fiscal Year 2010 U.S. Federal Receipts.
Budget of the United StatesGovernment
is the President'sproposal to the U.S. Congress whichrecommends funding levels for thenext fiscal year, beginning October 1.Congressional decisions are governedby rules and legislation regarding thefederal budget process. Budgetcommittees set spending limits for theHouse and Senate committees and forAppropriations subcommittees, whichthen approve individual appropriationsbills to allocate funding to variousfederal programs.After Congress approves anappropriations bill, it is sent to thePresident, who may sign it into law, ormay veto it. A vetoed bill is sent back to Congress, which can pass it into lawwith a two-thirds majority in eachchamber. Congress may also combineall or some appropriations bills into anomnibus reconciliation bill. Inaddition, the president may request andthe Congress may pass supplementalappropriations bills or emergencysupplemental appropriations bills.Several government agencies providebudget data and analysis. Theseinclude the GovernmentAccountability Office (GAO),Congressional Budget Office, theOffice of Management and Budget(OMB) and the U.S. TreasuryDepartment. These agencies have reported that the federal government is facing a series of important financingchallenges. In the short-run, tax revenues have declined significantly due to a severe recession and expenditures haveexpanded dramatically for stimulus and bailout measures. In the long-run, expenditures related to entitlementprograms such as Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid are growing considerably faster than the economy overallas the population matures.
United States federal budget2
Budget principles
The U.S. Constitution (Article I, section 9, clause 7) states that "[n]o money shall be drawn from the Treasury, but inConsequence of Appropriations made by Law; and a regular Statement and Account of Receipts and Expenditures of all public Money shall be published from time to time."Each year, the President of the United States submits his budget request to Congress for the following fiscal year asrequired by the Budget and Accounting Act of 1921. Current law (31 U.S.C. § 1105
(a)) requires the president tosubmit a budget no earlier than the first Monday in January, and no later than the first Monday in February.Typically, presidents submit budgets on the first Monday in February. The budget submission has been delayed,however, in some new presidents' first year when previous president belonged to a different party.The federal budget is calculated largely on a cash basis. That is, revenues and outlays are recognized whentransactions are made. Therefore, the full long-term costs of entitlement programs such as Medicare, Social Security,and the federal portion of Medicaid are not reflected in the federal budget. By contrast, many businesses and someforeign governments have adopted forms of accrual accounting, which recognizes obligations and revenues whenthey are incurred. The costs of some federal credit and loan programs, according to provisions of the Federal CreditReform Act of 1990, are calculated on a net present value basis.
Federal agencies cannot spend money unless funds are authorized and appropriated. Typically, separateCongressional committees have jurisdiction over authorization and appropriations. The House and SenateAppropriations Committees currently have 12 subcommittees, which are responsible for drafting the 12 regularappropriations bills that determine amounts of discretionary spending for various federal programs. Appropriationsbills must pass both the House and Senate and then be signed by the president in order to give federal agencies legalauthority to spend.
In many recent years, regular appropriations bills have been combined into "omnibus" bills.Congress may also pass "special" or "emergency" appropriations. Spending that is deemed an "emergency" isexempt from certain Congressional budget enforcement rules. Funds for disaster relief have sometimes come fromsupplemental appropriations, such as after Hurricane Katrina. In other cases, funds included in emergencysupplemental appropriations bills support activities not obviously related to actual emergencies, such as parts of the2000 Census of Population and Housing. Special appropriations have been used to fund most of the costs of war andoccupation in Iraq and Afghanistan so far.Budget resolutions and appropriations bills, which reflect spending priorities of Congress, will usually differ fromfunding levels in the president's budget. The president, however, retains substantial influence over the budget processthrough his veto power and through his congressional allies when his party has a majority in Congress.
Federal budget data
Several government agencies provide budget data. These include the Government Accountability Office (GAO), theCongressional Budget Office, the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) and the U.S. Treasury Department.CBO publishes
The Budget and Economic Outlook 
in January, which is typically updated in August. It also publishesa
Monthly Budget Review
. OMB, which is responsible for organizing the President's budget presented in February,typically issues a budget update in July. GAO and Treasury issue
Financial Statements of the U.S. Government 
,usually in the December following the close of the federal fiscal year, which occurs September 30. There is acorresponding
Citizen's Guide
, a short summary. The Treasury Department also produces a
Combined Statement of Receipts, Outlays, and Balances
each December for the preceding fiscal year, which provides detailed data onfederal financial activities.Historical tables within the President's Budget (OMB) provides a wide range of data on Federal Governmentfinances. Many of the data series begin in 1940 and include estimates of the President
s Budget for 2009
2014.Additionally, Table 1.1 provides data on receipts, outlays, and surpluses or deficits for 1901
1939 and for earliermulti-year periods. This document is composed of 17 sections, each of which has one or more tables. Each section
United States federal budget3covers a common theme. Section 1, for example, provides an overview of the budget and off-budget totals; Section 2provides tables on receipts by source; and Section 3 shows outlays by function. When a section contains severaltables, the general rule is to start with tables showing the broadest overview data and then work down to moredetailed tables. The purpose of these tables is to present a broad range of historical budgetary data in one convenientreference source and to provide relevant comparisons likely to be most useful. The most common comparisons are interms of proportions (e.g., each major receipt category as a percentage of total receipts and of the gross domesticproduct).
Federal budget projections
CBO calculates 35-year baseline projections, which are used extensively in the budget process. Baseline projectionsare intended to reflect spending under current law, and are not intended as predictions of the most likely path of theeconomy. During the George W. Bush Administration, OMB presented 5-year projections, but presented 45-yearprojections in the FY2010 budget submission. CBO and GAO issue long-term projections from time to time.
Major receipt categories
During FY 2010, the federal government collected approximately $2.16 trillion in tax revenue. Primary receiptcategories included individual income taxes (42%), Social Security/Social Insurance taxes (40%), and corporatetaxes (9%).
Other types included excise, estate and gift taxes.Tax revenues have averaged approximately 18.3% of gross domestic product (GDP) over the 1970-2009 period,generally ranging plus or minus 2% from that level. Tax revenues are significantly affected by the economy.Recessions typically reduce government tax collections as economic activity slows. For example, during bothFY2009 and FY2010, the U.S. government collected about $400 billion less than FY2008 revenues of $2.5 trillion.During 2009, individual income taxes declined 20%, while corporate taxes declined 50%. At 14.9% of GDP, the2009 and 2010 collections were the lowest level of the past 50 years.
Tax policy
Revenue and Expense as % GDP.
The appropriate level and distribution of federal taxes has long been a controversialtopic. Since the 1970s, some "supply side"economists have contended that loweringtaxes could stimulate economic growth tosuch a degree that tax revenues could rise,other factors being held constant. However,economic models and econometric analysishave found weak support for the "supplyside" theory. The Center on Budget andPolicy Priorities (CBPP) summarized avariety of studies done by economists acrossthe political spectrum that indicated tax cutsdo not pay for themselves and increasedeficits.
Studies by the CBO and the U.S.Treasury also indicated that tax cuts do notpay for themselves.
In 2003, 450 economists, including ten Nobel Prize

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