Chairman News


GOP Sen. Enzi proposes modest deficit curbs in new budget


WASHINGTON (AP) - A senior Senate Republican Friday unveiled a five-year budget plan that would modestly curb budget deficits that would otherwise soon breach $1 trillion, while rejecting President Donald Trump's gimmick of using war funding to sustain big increases for the Pentagon. Budget Committee Chairman Mike Enzi, R-Wyo., said the nonbinding blueprint is a "responsible first step" toward curbing budget deficits "by reducing overspending and setting real, achievable deficit reduction targe… Continue Reading


Highlights of the Senate Budget Committee’s Chairman’s Mark

by Gordon Gray

On March 22, the Senate Budget Committee (SBC) released the Chairman's Mark for the FY2020 Budget Resolution. It is remarkable in that, unlike many recent budget plans from Congress or the administration, it has a nodding acquaintance with reality. It does not assume rosy economic growth, but rather hews to the Congressional Budget Office's (CBO) economic forecast. It does not purport to balance in 10 years, a task that is increasingly a flight of fancy. Rather, it acknowledges the reality of pr… Continue Reading


Enzi's 2020 budget plan attempts to tame federal deficits

by David Sherfinski and Stephen Dinan

The Senate Budget Committee will take up Chairman Mike Enzi's 2020 budget proposal this week, as lawmakers hunt for new ways to turn around a bleak U.S. fiscal picture that just saw the government post its worst monthly deficit ever. February saw the government dip $234 billion deeper into the red, as government spending soared, powered by increased payouts at the Pentagon and in Social Security and Medicare. Mr. Enzi's new budget tries to tame Medicare, though he leaves Social Security untouc… Continue Reading


Senate Budget Plan Includes Realistic Deficit Reduction

by Patrick Newton

Senate Budget Committee Chairman Mike Enzi (R-WY) introduced today a Chairman's Mark of the Fiscal Year 2020 budget resolution to be considered and voted on by the full committee. The budget calls for $538 billion in deficit reduction over five years. The following is a statement from Maya MacGuineas, president of the Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget: We applaud the committee for putting forth a budget that includes significant deficit reduction and a realistic fiscal goal of returni… Continue Reading


Senate Republicans Issue Five-Year Plan to Rein In Budget Deficit

by Kristina Peterson

WASHINGTON-Senate Republicans issued a five-year budget plan Friday that calls for reducing the federal deficit and diverges from the White House over how much to stash in an emergency war fund. The budget resolution aims to cut mandatory spending, the part of federal funding extended on auto-pilot, by $551 billion by 2024. Republicans have long targeted this chunk of the federal budget, which pays for programs including Medicare and Medicaid, as the best opportunity for reining in spending. Ma… Continue Reading


Senate Budget Committee Chairman Mike Enzi proposes cuts to lower budget deficits

by Associated Press

WASHINGTON (AP) - A senior Senate Republican has unveiled a five-year budget plan that would modestly curb budget deficits that would otherwise soon breach $1 trillion, while rejecting President Donald Trump's gimmick of using war funding to sustain big increases for the Pentagon. Budget Committee Chairman Mike Enzi says the nonbinding blueprint is a "responsible first step" toward curbing budget deficits "by reducing overspending and setting real, achievable deficit reduction targets." The Wy… Continue Reading


Senate Budget Committee Chairman Mike Enzi unveils 2020 budget blueprint

by David Sherfinski

Senate Budget Committee Chairman Mike Enzi on Friday unveiled a federal budget for 2020 that includes some of President Trump's entitlement spending trims but ditches his defense spending gimmicks and rosy economic assumptions. The Wyoming Republican's plan leaves open the possibility of hitting Mr. Trump's $750 billion goal for defense spending, but only if Congress can agree to a deal to raise spending caps that likely also means a short-term spike in domestic spending - which Mr. Trump has o… Continue Reading


Enzi moving ahead with ‘realistic’ budget resolution

by Paul M. Krawzak

The Senate Budget Committee plans to mark up a fiscal 2020 budget resolution the last week of March, setting out spending and revenue targets for the next five years. Budget Chairman Michael B. Enzi, who skipped the exercise last year, said he intends to break from past practice and write a "realistic" budget which, for example, would not envision balancing or wiping out deficits. That's in part a function of the shorter time frame to reach balance - budget resolutions in recent years have typ… Continue Reading


Enzi wants answers on Census IT costs

by Chase Gunter

In a letter to new Census Director Steven Dillingham, Sen. Mike Enzi (R-Wyo.) raised concerns about how the nearly $5 billion in IT spending is being managed by the bureau. To that end, Enzi pointed to the number of vacancies in a key program management office that oversees the bureau's IT integration contract. That contract, worth $890 million and awarded to the technology provider T-Rex Corporation, is Census' largest IT deal. As of June 2018, 33 of the 58 positions in the office charged with… Continue Reading


Chairman Mike Enzi has some additional questions about VA’s IT strategy

by Tajha Chappellet-Lanier

Sen. Mike Enzi, R-Wyo., wants to know what contingency plans the Department of Veterans Affairs has in place should its efforts to "reset" development of a critical piece of benefits delivery software fail to go according to plan this time around as well. The chairman of the Senate Budget Committee sent yet another missive today in what is now a robust series of volleys between his office and the VA. This latest letter is a response to another VA Secretary Robert Wilkie sent on Dec. 10, which i… Continue Reading


Republicans and Democrats Unite on at Least One Issue: Oversight of the V.A.

by Jennifer Steinhauer

WASHINGTON - Even before the next Congress convenes, Republicans are joining Democrats in a vigorous examination of failings by the Department of Veterans Affairs, a rare area of bipartisan oversight in a blistering political environment. The unity was emphasized in recent weeks when lawmakers in the House and Senate from both parties sharply criticized the response of V.A. officials after it was revealed that the agency failed to make housing and tuition payments under the G.I. Bill after its c… Continue Reading


Congress Probes FEMA For Paying Huge Markups On Puerto Rico Recovery Supplies

by Tim Pearce

GOP Sen. Michael Enzi of Wyoming is pressing the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) to explain the stiff markups it is paying on supplies and labor to help rebuild Puerto Rico. Enzi, chairman of the Senate Budget Committee, sent a letter to FEMA administrator Brock Long Thursday requesting information on the Tu Hogar Renace program. The program is FEMA-funded and run by the Puerto Rico Department of Housing and has roughly $1.2 billion to dole out to Puerto Ricans for the purpose of hel… Continue Reading


VA to ‘reset’ efforts around new GI Bill housing stipend software

by Tajha Chappellet-Lanier

The Department of Veterans Affairs announced on Wednesday that its going to need a whole year to properly implement a piece of software that will make sure student veterans get appropriate GI Bill housing benefits. The Veterans Benefits Administration will "reset" its efforts to develop and deploy the software that was originally expected on July 16 of this year, the agency said in a press release. The new estimated date of deployment is Dec. 1, 2019. This extra time will "give the department … Continue Reading


Veterans Affairs unexpectedly canceled overtime work to address GI Bill claim backlog

by Phil McCausland

The VA's regional offices reopened on Monday, but the canceled work came less than two days after a House committee demanded answers on delayed payments to veterans. Nov. 20, 2018 / 8:32 AM EST By Phil McCausland Less than two days after a House committee demanded answers on why computer problems were delaying veterans' GI Bill payments, the Veterans Benefits Administration unexpectedly canceled its weekend work at three regional processing centers at the last minute on … Continue Reading


Senate Budget Committee also has some questions about those VA software issues

by Tajha Chappellet-Lanier

The Department of Veterans Affairs is now facing tough questions from the Senate Budget Committee about a software glitch that's causing delays in GI Bill benefits payments. Chairman Mike Enzi, R-Wyo., sent a letter to VA Secretary Robert Wilkie on Friday in which he demands answers to questions on how much money the VA has spent to fix the IT issue and when the problem will, finally, be solved. "What is the current status of the IT upgrades?" Enzi demands, in question number three of seven. "… Continue Reading


GOP senators scrutinize CBO's new health insurance simulation model

by Susannah Luthi

Republicans of the Senate Budget Committee Republicans have pressed the Congressional Budget Office to release details of the forthcoming new health insurance simulation model.In pointed language, the letter led by committee Chair Sen. Mike Enzy (R-Wyo.) suggested that the CBO should test its model with a do-over of the original estimate of the federal spending and health insurance coverage for the Affordable Care Act "to determine whether the agency's estimate would have been closer to the actu… Continue Reading


GOP want the official scorekeeper to give a second opinion on Obamacare

by Robert King

A group of 12 Republican senators demanded Wednesday that the official congressional scorekeeper reassess Obamacare to test out a new model for estimating insurance coverage. The letter the Republicans sent to the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office, asking it to use a new model for evaluating insurance coverage, underscores the political implications of the scorekeeper's ongoing work to revamp its modeling. Republicans have complained that CBO estimates of their Obamacare repeal bills over… Continue Reading


Chairmen Enzi And Alexander Request Report On Cost Of Student Loan Repayments

WASHINGTON D.C. - Senate Budget Committee Chairman Mike Enzi (R-WY) and Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions Committee Chairman Lamar Alexander (R-TN) are asking the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) to examine the effects of federal student loan policies on borrowing, loan repayment, cancellation, discharge, and forgiveness. The chairmen are seeking information on income-driven-repayment (IDR) plans. IDR plans allow student borrowers to pay a percentage of their discretionary income e… Continue Reading


Budget chairs press appropriators on veterans spending


The chairmen of the House and Senate budget committees have weighed in on a debate on how to fund a veterans program that has thrown a wrench into the 2019 appropriations process. Last week, the House and Senate Appropriations committees abruptly canceled a conference committee meeting to sort out differences over a package of three spending bills because of disagreements on veterans funding. Their question is whether to fund an expensive veterans program, the VA Mission Act, under existing bu… Continue Reading


House Speaker Paul Ryan endorses Enzi's two-year timeframe for federal spending bills

by David Sherfinski

House Speaker Paul D. Ryan on Wednesday threw his support behind a plan to move to a two-year budget for the federal government, saying it would give Congress more time to get its work done and perhaps end the cycle of shutdown showdowns. But other lawmakers said it will take more than tinkering with the calendar to fix the budget and spending process, which all sides say is broken after three government shutdowns in the last five years. Some of those lawmakers said it was time to disband Congr… Continue Reading

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