[WASHINGTON, D.C.] – US Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL), Chairman of the Senate Appropriations Subcommittee on Financial Services and General Government (FSGG), today unveiled the subcommittee’s appropriations package for fiscal year 2013. The bill covers $22.99 billion in discretionary spending for the nation’s consumer and financial watchdogs; the Treasury Department; the Federal Courts; District of Columbia; White House operations; and over two dozen independent agencies.
“This year’s appropriations bill continues to ensure that the nation’s consumer and investor protection agencies have the tools and resources necessary to protect Americans,” Durbin said. “The passage of the Wall Street reform bill expands responsibilities and important roles for the SEC, CFTC and this bill provides the funding to continue this much needed reform. This year’s bill also focuses on job creation and economic development by emphasizing the work of the Small Business Administration and the Community Development Financial Institutions to help small businesses grow and neighborhoods recover from the devastation of the recession. Once again our bill is both fiscally responsible and transparent and does a great deal the face of important competing demands.”
This year’s bill continues to emphasize the need to increase or maintain the resources for America’s consumer protection agencies. In particular, the bill dramatically increases funding for our nation’s leading market watchdogs: the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) and the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC). These funds were prioritized to ensure that agencies tasked with implementing the Dodd-Frank financial reforms were prioritized.
Securities and Exchange Commission
The FY13 FSGG appropriations bill expands SEC the necessary resources to effectively protect shareholders and police a vast and increasingly complex market.
The Committee’s proposed FY13 funding level of $1.566 billion would represent an increase of $245 million (19%) over the FY12 enacted level. This funding, fully offset by collection of securities transaction fees, supports increased legal and investigative staffing for oversight and enforcement responsibilities including significant new mandates under the Wall Street reform law, as well as substantial investments in IT upgrades.
Commodity Futures Trading Commission
The CFTC’s job is to ensure that the futures markets are equipped to provide a mechanism for price discovery and a means of offsetting price risks.
The Committee’s proposed funding for the Commodity Futures Trading Commission of $308 million would represent an increase of $102.7 million (50%) over above the FY12 enacted funding level. The increase supports staffing growth and IT enhancements to meet significantly expanded responsibilities in implementing the mandates under the Dodd-Frank Wall Street reform law including regulation and oversight of trading and clearance of over-the-counter derivatives.
Internal Revenue Service
The bill provides a total of $12.519 billion, an increase of $702 million (6%) above the fiscal year 2012 enacted level and $242 million. The recommended funding aims to restore severe cuts to taxpayer services and enforcement resources experienced in the previous two fiscal years that have hampered the IRS’s ability to respond to taxpayer inquiries and have undermined efforts to maximize revenue collection and narrow the tax gap. Funds will also support an array of compliance activities to address offshore tax evasion, reduce the underreporting tax gap, combat tax-related identity theft, strengthen return preparer compliance, and restore revenue lost as a result of past reductions to examinations and collection programs.
Consumer Product Safety Commission
The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission is the nation’s leading consumer protection watchdog, charged with protecting the public from unreasonable risks of serious injury or death from thousands of types of consumer products. The CPSC's work to ensure the safety of consumer products - such as toys, cribs, power tools, cigarette lighters, and household chemicals - contributed significantly to the dramatic decline consumer products injuries and deaths over the past 30 years.
The bill allocates $122.4 million, an increase of $7.9 million (6%) over the FY12 enacted level.
This year’s bill also focuses on job creation and economic development efforts within the Committee’s jurisdiction.
Small Business Administration
The Small Business Administration aids small business growth nationwide through loan guarantees, contracts, counseling and other forms assistance. The Administration focuses on providing small businesses access to capital, encouraging small business development and training, and assisting with government contracting.
The bill provides $956.7 million for the Small Business Administration, an increase of $38 million (4%) above the fiscal year 2012 enacted level. In addition to that amount, the bill includes $167 million, designated as disaster relief, for the administrative costs of the Disaster Loans Program. The recommendation ensures that small business lending remains at maximum levels and supports technical assistance for entrepreneurs seeking to start or grow a small business. The recommendation provides $114.75 million for Small Business Development Centers, an increase of $2.25 million, and also includes resources for the Microloan program ($25 million in microlending and $24 million in technical assistance).
Community Development Financial Institutions Fund
The Community Development Financial Institution Fund’s mission is to expand the capacity of financial institutions to provide credit, capital, and financial services to underserved populations and communities around the nation. The fund was created for the purpose of promoting economic revitalization and community development through investment in and assistance to community development financial institutions.
The bill provides $233 million, an increase of $12 million (5.4%) above the fiscal year 2012 enacted level. The recommendation will continue critical seed funding that generates private investor confidence to support community development projects in our nation’s communities that are unserved or underserved by traditional financial institutions, including affordable housing developments, retail developments, community facilities such as day care centers, and small business loans
Funding levels for other accounts within the bill’s jurisdiction are as follows:
Department of Treasury
The bill provides $1.1 billion for non-IRS Treasury programs, $25 million (2%) below the fiscal year 2012 enacted level due to identified efficiency savings.
The bill provides $7.16 billion in mandatory and discretionary funding for the Federal Courts, an increase of $194 million (2.7%) above the fiscal year 2012 enacted level. The requested increases are primarily for the Courts’ mandatory programs, increased rental payments, and base requirements.
Executive Office of the President
The bill provides $306.3 million for White House Operations, equal to the President’s request and a decrease of $4.9 million (1.6%) over the FY12 enacted level.
The District of Columbia
The bill provides $676 million in Federal payments for designated purposes, an increase of $10.5 million above the fiscal year 2012 enacted level. The bill also approves the District’s local budget of $11.35 billion.
Federal Communications Commission (FCC)
The bill provides $347.8 million for the FCC, $7.9 million (2.3%) above the fiscal year 2012 enacted level. The recommendation also authorizes the FCC to retain up to $99 million from auction proceeds to administer spectrum auctions and implement new legislation related to spectrum auctions.
Federal Trade Commission (FTC)
The bill provides $300 million for the FTC, a decrease of $11.6 million (3.7%) to the fiscal year 2012 enacted level due to the completion of a multi-year project. The recommendation fully funds the FTC’s competition and consumer protection missions.
General Services Administration (GSA)
The bill provides $56 million for construction and acquisition and $514.7 million for repair of federal buildings and courthouses.
The subcommittee’s follows the spending guidance of $22.99 billion in discretionary budget authority in addition to $21.3 billion in mandatory spending.