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American Society of Military Comptrollers Professional Development Institute

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Title: American Society of Military Comptrollers Professional Development Institute


1
American Society of Military ComptrollersProfessi
onal Development Institute
  • Pat Condon
  • 26 March 2013

2
Outline
  • Federal budget process How it is supposed to
    work
  • Frustrations
  • Test questions for federal spending
  • What you can do

3
Federal Budget Process
  • First Monday in February President submits
    budget for coming FY to Congress
  • 15 February CBO submits budget outlook to
    Congressional committees
  • Spring and summer House and Senate agree on
    modified budget
  • Early fall President signs authorization and
    appropriation acts
  • 1 October Fiscal year begins

4
Federal Budget Process
  • How does it really work?
  • Never like the previous chart describes
  • Continuing Resolutions have become a way of life
  • Incredibly inefficient
  • Inconsistent with good planning and execution
  • What do you do when the House and Senate pass
    budgets before the President submits his?

5
Frustrations
  • Process does not work as laid out
  • Lack of honest discourse
  • Unwillingness to address real financial issues
    facing our country
  • Disagreement on the role of the Federal Government

6
Lack of Honest Discourse
  • Definitions Spending Cut
  • Webster Reduction in amount previously
    allocated and used for a specific purpose
  • Washington Decrease in the increase planned
    for a specific purpose

7
Lack of Honest Discourse
  • Definitions Loophole
  • Webster Ambiguity or omission in the text
    through which the intent of a statute may be
    evaded
  • Washington Provision in tax law intended to
    encourage or incentivize investment in America

8
Lack of Honest Discourse
  • Definitions Entitlement
  • Webster A right to benefits specified
    especially by law or contract
  • Washington Belief that one is deserving of
    certain privileges

9
Lack of Honest Discourse
  • Definitions Fair Share
  • Webster Free from favor toward either or any
    side. Proper balance of conflicting needs.
  • Washington If you are wealthy, whatever you
    are paying is not enough.

10
Unwillingness to Address Real Financial Issues
  • Look at national financial situation on a
    household basis (2012 data)
  • Annual income 50,000
  • Annual spending 76,873
  • Amount owed to creditors 332,786
  • Would your solution be to continue to spend more
    than you make?
  • And we have politicians saying we do not have a
    spending problem?

11
Unwillingness to Address Real Financial Issues
  • Social Security
  • Enacted in 1935
  • Never intended to provide all funding needed at
    retirement
  • 1935 life expectancy was 62 years 2012 near 80
  • 1940 42 workers per retiree 2012 2.8 per
    retiree
  • Surplus loaned to Federal Government, to be paid
    back with interest SS Trust Fund
  • Social Security began drawing money from the
    Trust Fund in 2010
  • SS Trust Fund projected to be empty in 2033
  • SS will operate at a deficit from 2033 and beyond

12
Unwillingness to Address Real Financial Issues
  • President Herbert Hoover faced serious financial
    problems
  • His solutions?
  • Dramatically increased federal spending
  • Raised taxes on the wealthy
  • Created government programs to aid those less
    fortunate
  • Result The Great Depression

13
Role of the Federal Government
  • U.S. Constitution, Article I, Section 8
  • The Congress shallprovide for the common
    Defence and general Welfare of the United
    States.
  • Common Defence is fairly easy to understand
  • But what does general Welfare mean?
  • Basic infrastructure to allow commerce to thrive?
  • Government programs to ensure that no one goes
    without food and shelter?
  • Government programs to ensure that every human
    need is cared for?

14
Test Questions for Federal Spending
  • Is federal spending for this program authorized
    under the U.S. Constitution?
  • If we are authorized to spend taxpayer money for
    this program, should we?
  • Are we treating a symptom or the root cause?
  • What are the unintended consequences and how do
    we mitigate them?
  • What measures of merit need to be established and
    how do we evaluate the results to ensure they are
    what we intended?
  • If the results are not as we intended, how do we
    make corrections?

15
Frustrations
  • One could list many more that we have not covered
    here
  • There are three fundamental questions to be
    addressed
  • What do we want to be as a country?
  • What can we afford to be as a country?
  • What actions do we need to take to make that
    happen?

16
What You Can Do
  • Be informed
  • Use several sources look at all sides
  • Understand what is within the realm of the
    possible
  • Separate emotion from fact and logic
  • Be engaged locally and nationally
  • Interact with your elected officials and hold
    them accountable
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