House committee targets education funding

To deal with the cuts imposed by sequestration, the House Appropriations Committee has chosen to target certain departments—including Education—instead of spreading the cuts across all agencies.

Republicans controlling the House of Representatives pressed ahead May 21 with a plan to slash spending on certain domestic programs—including education—far deeper than the cuts these departments already face under a painful round of automatic austerity.

Military Construction/Veterans Affairs, Homeland Security, and the Pentagon would be spared under the plan approved by the House Appropriations Committee on a party-line vote, but total funding for education, health, and labor programs would absorb a cut of 18 percent below fiscal year 2013 levels adopted in March.

At issue are deep agency budget cuts required under sequestration, or the automatic, across-the-board reductions triggered when lawmakers were unable to agree on alternative ways to curb the deficit. This year, the cuts are being applied to domestic agencies and the Pentagon equally; the budget plan approved by the House on May 21 is for the 2014 budget year and restores cuts to the military while making cuts to domestic programs favored by Democrats—including education—even deeper.

(Next page: More details about the plan)

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