Monday, March 19, 2007

On the Solemnity of St. Joseph. . .

. . .one might take inspiration from his concern for family and encourage Congress to be similarly concerned for low-income and poor families and children.

Catholic Charities announced that the Senate has marked up the budget bill and rejected cuts that would adversely affect families. Near the end of the announcement is a link to make contacting members of Congress easy.
Senate Committee Approves Budget Resolution

This week, the Budget Committee of the U.S. Senate approved a budget resolution for fiscal year (FY 2008) that provides for an approximate four percent increase in domestic discretionary spending, and $18 billion more than the President’s proposed budget.

Included in the budget resolution is up to an additional $50 billion for the State Children’s Health Insurance Program (SCHIP). These funds can be used to cover children already enrolled in the program and children who are eligible but not enrolled; the funds can also be used to fix state shortfalls in the program. In order to meet these needs, advocates estimated that it will take approximately $60 billion over five years.

The Senate budget resolution also rejects certain cuts outlined in the President’s budget proposal. It rejects proposed cuts to the Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) as well as the Low-Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP).

The budget resolution sets the overall spending parameters for Congress, while appropriations committees in both chambers decide spending levels for each discretionary program within those parameters. Ensuring sufficient room in Congress’ budget resolution is crucial to ensuring adequate funding for domestic programs that aid those in need. The House Budget Committee has yet to approve its version of a budget resolution.

To let Congress know that the budget must sufficiently fund programs that serve families and individuals with low-incomes, please click here to visit Catholic Charities USA’s Legislative Action Center today!.

To view Catholic Charities USA letter to the Senate and House Budget Committees regarding our concerns on the budget, please click here.

For more information, please contact Christin Driscoll, Senior Director of Policy Development and Advocacy,

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