Public Policy Update - February 27, 2013

Sequestration Looms

Currently, the effects of the sequester will begin to go into effect this Friday, March 1, 2013. The sequester is part of the 2011 Budget Control Act which says that unless Congress comes up with a plan to cut deficits by $1.2 trillion, across-the-board cuts will automatically go into effect. The sequester will cut government spending by $85 billion in 2013, and according to CBO estimates, will reduce GDP by 0.7%.

The across the board cuts of the sequester would slash 8.4 percent of non-military government funded programs. Specifically, this cut would affect:

• HHS’s Runaway and Homeless Youth Act (42 U.S.C. 5601), which provides street outreach, basic centers, and transitional living for unaccompanied and homeless youth.
• HUD’s McKinney-Vento funds, which provide education for homeless children and youth.
• DOL’s Workforce Investment Act (WIA), which provides training and employment services to
• HUD’s Public Housing and Section 8 Housing Choice Voucher, which provides housing assistance to transitioning youth and young adults

There is a good chance that the deadline for sequestration will be pushed to May 18th because the House passed a debt limit bill on January 31st which extended the current borrowing cap of $16.4 trillion through at least May 18, 2013.