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CBO’S ACCOMPLISHMENTS DURING FY 1993

Once again in fiscal year 1993, budget issues and the health of the economy dominated the legislative agenda of the Congress. As a result, the work of the CBO figured prominently in Congressional deliberations of the issues before the nation. The agency's workload remained steady except for the continuing task of implementing the BEA, which involved working with the Congress and the Office of Management and Budget to settle various issues and questions relating in particular to discretionary spending caps and pay-as-you-go requirements. In addition to the continuing priority given to reducing the federal deficit, major budgetary issues during the year included health care reform, the fiscal health of various government-backed financial institutions, the budgetary and economic impacts of reduced defense spending, and trade and competitiveness.

During the year, the Budget Analysis Division continued to support the Congress on the fiscal year 1994 budget formulation and produced hundreds of bill cost estimates, regular scorekeeping reports, baseline budget projections, and budget estimates for budget reduction options. In addition, the division prepared estimates for numerous proposals related to the budget reconciliation bill; an effort equivalent to work on over 50 individual, major bills. The division continued to assist the Congress with the implementation of the new Budget Enforcement Act and working closely with the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) to minimize differences in spending estimates.

In addition to providing the Congress with regular analyses and projections of the U.S. economy, the Macroeconomic Analysis Division published major studies in many economic areas, including the decline in the national savings rate and the saving habits of baby boomers, NAFTA, and federal debt and interest costs.

Along with its regular revenue scorekeeping reports and revenue cost estimates, the Tax Analysis Division prepared analyses and provided testimony on many issues, including the revenue effects of trade-related bills, energy taxes, and federal user charges.

The CBO's four program divisions-Natural Resources and Commerce, Health and Human Resources, National Security, and Special Studies-continued to assist the Congress in focusing its debate by organizing and presenting analyses and testimonies that outlined the budgetary effects of numerous policy options and alternatives. The subjects of these analyses included the impact of NAFTA on various sectors of the economy, Superfund costs, restructuring the health care system, worker displacement, economic effects of reduced defense spending, defense conversion initiatives, reducing CBO’S ACCOMPLISHMENTS DURING FY 1993 cont.

Micro-to-mainframe capabilities continued to be developed by the automated systems staff, enabling analysts to quickly move data between their microcomputer models and mainframe data bases, thereby increasing productivity while reducing timesharing costs. Also, in fiscal year 1993, CBO upgraded its local-area-network (LAN) capability with a more reliable backbone that is easier to maintain and that supports future information technologies.

CHANGES IN CBO'S PLANS FOR FY 1993 AND FY 1994

The CBO actual spending in fiscal year 1993 shows a significant variance from the fiscal year 1993 plan in just two areas. Printing costs in fiscal year 1993 were $163,000 below the plan. Although an average number of studies was printed, costs were lowered by taking advantage of the GPO 814 program under which an agency's printing jobs are contracted out to private printers by GPO.

Also, in fiscal year 1993, we were given the authority to re-program $125,000 of the savings in printing costs for ADP equipment purchases, specifically for the replacement of a large part of the CBO local area network. Savings on the final network replacement contract, along with lower spending in other equipment areas, resulted in the use of just $86,000 of these additional funds.

The CBO fiscal year 1994 appropriation was a 1% reduction from the FY 1993 level and 5.5% below the original budget request. The fiscal year 1994 estimate presented here varies from the original request in a couple of areas. Personnel costs have been reduced to reflect a reduction of 7 FTEs, the cancellation of the 1/1/94 ECI adjustment, lower merit pay costs as more positions are capped, and a reduction of the base due to turnover in fiscal year 1993. Also, the printing budget was reduced to reflect the lower costs of using CBO'S GOALS FOR FY 1995 In fiscal year 1995, the Congressional Budget Office will continue to fulfill its mandate as previously stated. In order to achieve this goal, the following objectives support this budget request:

To maintain the quality of analysis currently being provided the Congress and to manage a growing workload with fewer resources. This requires the heavy utilization of all staff in the budget and fiscal analysis areas specifically responsible for CBO's duties under the Budget Enforcement Act, as modified by the Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act of 1993;

To increase the efficiency of all analysts with the most up-to-date computer resources available, while reducing costs by the sharing of data and equipment through networking; and

To continue efforts to realize savings in administrative costs by implementing the most cost-effective data-processing and information dissemination methods available.

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| State & Local Bill Cost Estimates(a) 1

| Baseline Budget Projections

|-··

| Program Analysis Reports

| Economic Forecast (b)

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| Analysis of Pres. Budget

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Reducing the Deficit

CBO's Workload

Total CBO Products:

|

| Projects pending from prior years |--

| Projects started during the FY |=============

| FY1993 | FY1994 | % change | FY1995 | % change | (actual) | (est.) | 93-94 | (est.) | 94-95 |

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1

3 |

| Sequestration Report
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·|-······ ·|········· |-·

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| Requested projects in progress at the end of the FY

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|=========================================|==========|=========|=========

The above tables quantify CBO's main work products. A large number of less formal tasks, which are harder to tabulate, are also performed by CBO. In recent years, the number of formal and informal requests from Congress for CBO assistance has been growing. As a result, the number of informal responses to Congressional requests-in the form of staff memorandum, letter, or telephone response--has been growing significantly, as is the time needed to satisfy these

25 |

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