Chairman News

10.22.20

Under one roof — Reforming America’s federal housing programs

by Senator Mike Enzi

The economic damage wrought by the pandemic has revealed many things, and one glaring issue is the importance of an effective federal housing assistance system. Unfortunately, as millions of Americans are learning firsthand, we don't have that. The Senate Budget Committee, which I chair, just released what we hope is a meaningful report showing how the federal government's current approach to housing assistance is failing the neediest Americans. Moreover, it demonstrates that if we started from… Continue Reading


06.12.20

Raise Entry Fees for Funds to Reduce the Maintenance Backlog at Our National Parks

by Nicolas Loris

The Great American Outdoors Act is well-intentioned, with its goal of addressing the nearly $20 billion deferred maintenance backlog of our nation's public lands. But the bill, which the Senate will vote on soon, would also add to the federal debt and empower the executive branch to acquire more federal land with limited accountability. Recognizing some of the bill's flaws, Sen. Mike Enzi, R-Wyo., offered an amendment that would, in his words, "fix future problems without having to put the cos… Continue Reading


02.19.20

‘Zombie’ Federal Programs That Congress Hasn’t Authorized in Years Cost Taxpayers $332 Billion

by MARK TAPSCOTT

WASHINGTON-Hundreds of billions of federal tax dollars will be spent this year on programs with expired legislative authorizations - including thousands from a law passed in 1985 - according to the Congressional Budget Office (CBO), but Congress appears to be in no hurry to fix the problem. The CBO report - which was made public recently by Senate Budget Committee Chairman Mike Enzi (R-Wyo.) - found tax dollars will be spent in 2020 on at least 1,046 expired authorizations on programs under 2… Continue Reading


02.18.20

Bipartisan Coalition Unites Behind First Federal Financial Management Reform Since 1990

by MARK TAPSCOTT

WASHINGTON-Almost as extinct in the nation's capital as the dinosaurs in the National Museum of Natural History are bipartisan coalitions of legislators and advocacy groups pushing for much-needed landmark reforms in how federal officials spend tax dollars. But such a coalition has formed behind the Chief Financial Officers (CFO) Vision Act of 2020, co-sponsored by Senate Budget Committee Chairman Mike Enzi (R-Wyo.), Senate Pro Tempore Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa), who is also chairman of the Sena… Continue Reading


02.14.20

Graduate school debt is driving up the cost of helping borrowers manage their student loans

by Danielle Douglas-Gabriel

Americans are amassing hefty debt in graduate programs and turning to repayment plans that offer loan forgiveness. But the trend is costing taxpayers and could make the popular programs politically untenable. A Congressional Budget Office report released Wednesday projects that loans made to graduate students over the next decade will account for 81 percent of the $207.4 billion the federal government will forgive through what are known as income-driven repayment plans. The plans cap monthly pa… Continue Reading


02.13.20

Growing Federal Subsidies for Graduate Loan Debt

by Paul Fain

The share of federal student loan debt with relatively generous repayment options -- in income-driven repayment plans -- is growing rapidly, according to a new report from the Congressional Budget Office. And the CBO, a nonpartisan agency, found that borrowers with graduate and professional degrees are benefiting most from the increasingly expensive federal program. About 45 percent of the volume of federal loans was being repaid through income-driven plans in 2017, the report sa… Continue Reading


02.12.20

Student Debt Forgiveness in U.S. to Total $207 Billion in Next Decade, CBO Says

by Josh Mitchell

WASHINGTON-The U.S. government will forgive $207.4 billion in student debt for Americans who take out loans over the next decade, the Congressional Budget Office said Wednesday. The biggest benefits will go to borrowers who attend graduate or professional school. The CBO projects the government will originate $1.05 trillion in new loans from 2020 to 2029. Much of that will end up in income-driven repayment plans, which set monthly payments as a share of a borrower's income and then forgive bala… Continue Reading


01.27.20

The Trouble Ahead for Federal Trust Funds

by Michael Rainey

The aggregate balance of the hundreds of federal trust funds and other dedicated funds will start declining in two years, according to a new report from the Government Accountability Office. Republican Senators Mike Enzi (WY) and Mike Braun (IN) asked the GAO to review the status of the funds that support Social Security, Medicare, flood insurance, and many other programs, and the results were published this week. It's a large and complex topic, as this passage from the G… Continue Reading


01.24.20

GAO Says Federal Trust Fund Bankruptcy Crisis Extends Far Beyond Social Security and Medicare

by MARK TAPSCOTT

WASHINGTON-A new report contains blunt warning signs of an approaching fiscal crisis in federal trust funds backing Social Security, Medicare, flood insurance, and many other programs, according to Senate Budget Committee Chairman Mike Enzi (R-Wyo.). "The GAO's new report is another warning sign that Social Security, Medicare, and other trust fund programs on which many Americans rely are in danger of going broke," Enzi said Jan. 23 in releasing the Government Accounting Office (GAO) analysis… Continue Reading


01.13.20

AFP Urges Congress to Work Together on Budget Reform

by Americans for Prosperity (AFP)

Arlington, Va. - Americans for Prosperity (AFP) released a policy analysis today supporting the Enzi-Whitehouse budget legislation, which lays out five key budget process reforms that would make it easier and more imperative for Congress to address our looming spending and debt problems. The analysis, authored by AFP Senior Policy Fellow Alison Acosta Winters, dives into the Bipartisan Congressional Budget Reform Act (BCoBRA) sponsored by Sens. Mike Enzi (R-Wyo.) and Sheldon Whitehouse (D-R.I.).… Continue Reading


12.18.19

Improving CBO is a Key Part of Enzi-Whitehouse Budget Process Reform

by Demian Brady


12.12.19

The broken budget process is a democracy reform issue

by Kevin R. Kosar

It is difficult to overstate how wrecked the federal budget process is. Late last month, President Trump signed a 30-day stopgap funding measure to dodge a government shutdown. This was the second time this autumn that Congress and the president had to resort to such a continuing resolution. Governing through short-term spending bills has become the rule in recent years, and not passing a congressional budget resolution (or spending plan) has become the new normal. The wrecked process has produ… Continue Reading


11.21.19

Enzi-Whitehouse Budget Process Bill Includes Important Reforms

by Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget

The Senate Budget Committee recently marked up and reported bipartisan legislation to reform the budget process. The Bipartisan Congressional Budget Reform Act, introduced by Chairman Enzi (R-WY) and Senator Whitehouse (D-RI), would improve transparency and accountability in the budget process. It would make the budget resolution into a more effective governing tool by making it easier for policymakers to choose fiscal targets and stick with them. That, we hope, would mean putting the debt on a … Continue Reading


11.14.19

Enzi’s Long-Shot Push for Budget Reform

by Zach C. Cohen

It was almost done. After an hour-and-a-half of debate last week on reforming the way Congress budgets billions of dollars every year, Sen. Michael Enzi refused to call a vote on his bill. Most of the members of the panel were present except for those also on the Judiciary Committee, who were at the White House basking in their effort with President Trump to remake the federal judiciary. So Enzi, the retiring chairman of the Budget Committee, reconvened his committee mere minutes later in an o… Continue Reading


11.13.19

Broken Budget Blues? Senators Enzi, Whitehouse May Have A Remedy For That

by Andrew Lautz

You don't need to be a legislative expert to know that the Congressional budget process is broken. Total public debt is $23 trillion and counting, which is the equivalent of more than 103 percent of the nation's gross domestic product (GDP), and the fiscal year (FY) 2019 federal budget deficit alone approached $1 trillion. Lawmakers have time and time again proven unwilling to make politically difficult but fiscally responsible decisions, all the while careening from budget crisis to budget cris… Continue Reading


11.11.19

Bipartisan Reforms Get Budget Committee OK

by MARK TAPSCOTT

WASHINGTON-A package of fundamental reforms in how Congress does federal budgeting received overwhelmingly bipartisan support at the committee level and is now heading to the Senate floor, where it could face big hurdles. The principal sponsors of the Bipartisan Congressional Budget Reform Act of 2019 are Senate Budget Committee Chairman Mike Enzi (R-Wyo.) and committee member Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse (D-R.I.). The budget panel approved the legislation Nov. 6 on a 15-6 vote, with support by… Continue Reading


11.08.19

Yahoo! Budget Process Reforms Move Forward.

by Taxpayers for Commonsense

Considering the cacophony coming out of the Capitol, it would be excusable to have not heard about an important bipartisan piece of legislation moving forward. But this week the Senate Committee on the Budget put its stamp of approval on the Bipartisan Congressional Budget Act. Co-sponsored by Senate Budget Committee Chair Mike Enzi (R-WY) and Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI) along with more than a dozen of their colleagues from both parties, this bill is the first bipartisan budget process reform… Continue Reading


11.07.19

Senate Committee Approves Budget Reforms

by Fiscal Times Staff

The Senate Budget Committee on Wednesday approved a bipartisan bill that aims to reform the federal government's budget process. The Bipartisan Congressional Budget Reform Act "would provide a more orderly and deliberative budget process focused on long-term fiscal planning," according to committee chair Sen. Mike Enzi (R-WY), who sponsored the bill along with Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI). Here's Whitehouse's summary of what the bill would do: Move the budget resolution to a two-year cycle… Continue Reading


11.06.19

Concord Coalition Praises Bipartisan Senate Budget Reform Plan

by Concord Coalition

WASHINGTON - The Concord Coalition said today that a new budget process reform bill co-sponsored by Senate Budget Committee Chair Mike Enzi (R-WY) and Budget Committee member Senator Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI) proposes reforms that would address some of the most vexing problems plaguing the current budget process. The Bipartisan Congressional Budget Reform Act is also co-sponsored by Senators Grassley (R-IA), Kaine (D-VA), Crapo (R-ID), King (I-ME), Graham (R-SC), Coons (D-DE), Barrasso (R-WY), … Continue Reading


11.05.19

The unglamorous job of federal budgeting

by Sen. Michael B. Enzi and Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse

OPINION - It is no secret that a vast majority of Americans disapprove of the job Congress is doing. Too often our political debates are characterized by hyperpartisanship, rather than achieving meaningful outcomes for the American people. Nowhere is this problem more acute than when it comes to our inability to address our country's unsustainable fiscal course. Our current budget process is broken, as evidenced by mounting debt and deficits, a patchwork of temporary spending bills, government … Continue Reading

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