As you know, President Trump released his FY 2018 budget request earlier today. For the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), the administration is proposing a budget request between $69 billion and $65.1 billion. The discrepancy is due to the fact the administration’s budget document cites both numbers in different places. NTEU will be seeking a clarification of this document error.
The budget request is a proposed 17.9% reduction for HHS. In addition to the discrepancy in numbers, the budget request lacks detail to pinpoint the impact this funding level would have on NTEU-represented personnel at HHS. The administration does propose an increase in some Substance Abuse and Mental Health Administration-administered programs while making cuts elsewhere in HHS.
The budget calls for total elimination of the Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP) and the Community Service Block Grants (CSBG), administered by the NTEU-represented Administration on Children & Families. LIHEAP provides help to mostly elderly, low income Americans during the winter months to avoid shut off of their home heating. CSBG funds the anti-poverty Community Action Agencies that exist throughout the country.
For the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), the administration proposes funding the agency by doubling industry-paid user fees. While such user fees would be helpful to FDA, the previous administration proposed more modest increases in user fees that were never enacted by Congress.
I welcome your feedback on this subject.