07.08.2011 0

Budget Battle: Energy and Water Appropriations

In the latest battle of putting together a 2012 budget that will reduce government spending, Rep. Marsha Blackburn (R-TN) plans to introduce two different amendments that would reduce the appropriations to energy and water to either FY 2005 levels or FY 2007.

Rep. Blackburn plans to push for a 5% reduction in energy and water appropriations, and will introduce her first amendment, which would reduce spending by 5%—a number that would be in the $1.5 billion neighborhood. This would reduce appropriations to the FY 2005 level.

Should that amendment be rejected, Rep. Blackburn will counter with a second amendment that would cut spending by 1%, or $306 million, and would reduce spending back to the FY 2007 level.

Earlier this year, several House Republicans including Rep. Blackburn attempted to reduce all government spending to FY 2007 levels, but were blocked by 92 Republicans in their efforts. Further, the projected deficit for this coming year is $1.65 trillion—a staggering sum that needs to be dealt with sooner rather than later.

The cuts that Rep. Blackburn plans to introduce on Monday during debate on the energy and water appropriations in the House will go beyond cuts proposed by Rep. Paul Ryan’s budget that rolled back spending to FY 2008 levels.

Americans for Limited Government President Bill Wilson said, “This is an important step towards reining in the out-of-control spending. With deficits rising, the first thing that Congress could do is implement these cuts that will open the path towards greater fiscal responsibility.”

The cuts will affect everyone across the board on the energy and water appropriations, and would specifically affect the TVA, Army Corps of Engineers, and the Delta Regional Authority,, amongst others. There would be some flexibility with these cuts, as the individual agencies and departments could select exactly where they will cut.

The battle to get government spending under control is a long and hard fight, and it will take attempts like this one to begin making a dent in the deficit. With politicians on both sides of the aisle showing that they are unwilling to make the tough choices to make significant cuts when the nation needs them most, we have to take cuts wherever we can get them.

This effort led by Rep. Blackburn is a good step in the right direction, and hopefully the House will pass her amendment.

Adam Bitely is the Editor-in-Chief of NetRightDaily.com. You can follow him on Twitter at @AdamBitely.

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