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John C. Stennis Center.
Library of Congress: Congressional Research Service; National Film Preservation Board.
Office of Technology Assessment.
United States Capitol Preservation Commission.
Mr. FAZIO. I would like now to take up those matters that relate to the House of Representatives. I will skip over at the moment some additional comments, but put them in the record. There are a lot of people here who have other things to do. Before I put those remarks in the record, we are talking about a $2.1 billion appropriations bill, not including the Senate items. We are talking about a significant allocation of funds but not one that has grown outside the bounds of what we have been spending in general in the Federal Government. In fact, less than we have been spending on a per year rate of increase in the executive branch.
There are a number of pressures on this committee. I think this year will be no different. CBO indicated we cut our outlay expenditures by 6.5 percent last year. This year, I believe we will be cutting this bill beyond last year's level once again.
It is anybody's guess as to what that cut will be, but I know we indicated to a lot of people who are appearing this week and next week that they ought to be ready for sizable reductions.
There are really only three ways we can do this. We can simply cut across the board and hope for a better performance within each of the agencies whose budgets we review. We can contract out as we have occasionally done in this branch of government; occasionally saving some money, often paying the price in terms of quality as we saw at the House restaurant. We can also shift to the executive branch. That may not, of course, save the taxpayer any money, but it does reduce some of the burden on us the legislation branch. But there are severe and significant questions of jurisdiction and historic relationship that need to be dealt with if we try to do any of that.
So our task essentially is the same as it has always been. That is to get the job done with a certain amount of quality and consistency, protecting the prerogatives of the legislative branch; and at the same time doing it, as our colleagues seem to require, with less and less funding.
I think what I will do is place my remaining remarks in the record and ask my colleagues at this point if they wish to make introductory remarks, beginning with Mr. Young.
[The information follows:]
STATEMENT OF CHAIRMAN FAZIO
The budget that we are going to consider totals $2.1
which will be considered in the other body. of the portion of this budget which will be considered by the Subcommittee, $1.23 billion ($1,233,761,000) is for Congressional Operations only.
The balance of the funds requested, which total $842 million ($841,996,000), support statutory and administrative activities of the Legislative Branch which are performed for the Executive Branch and for the public-at-large. These activities include such agencies as the Library of Congress, Copyright Royalty Tribunal, Government Printing Office, and the General Accounting Office.
These funds for the Legislative Branch are primarily for staff and computers. We don't have large hardware or grant programs. This is primarily an administrative operation.
We should point out that there is far more than $2.1 billion in appropriations included. There are a number of other activities managed by the agencies covered by our bill a number of trust and gift funds, the copyright royalty fund, service fees and other reimbursements.
There is also the Government Printing Office revolving fund which is the method GPO uses to provide printing services for the entire Federal government. Under Title 44 and the Government Corporation Act, we annually authorize the operation of this fund. That is almost $1 billion which is not scored against the bill because it is derived from charges to other agency
The actual funding covered by the agencies in the Legislative bill, therefore, is not $2.1 billion (plus the Senate,), but over $4.5 billion estimated for FY 1994. So the sum and the scope of these activities are much larger than most realize.
I'd like also to make some comparisons from last year's
Last year, the fiscal year 1993 bill was a decrease of 1.25% under the fiscal year 1992 appropriation for Legislative Branch activities. In total outlays, the CBO said we reduced
expenditures by some 6.5%.
Under procedures set up by the Budget and Accounting Act of 1921, the process that is gone through to develop the legislative and judicial branch budgets is a little different than the executive branch budget.
In the case of the executive branch, the departments and agencies (Defense, Commerce, EPA, etc.) go through a budget review by the Office of Management and Budget, acting for the President. After that executive branch process is completed, the President presents the fiscal year budget to the Congress.
With the legislative and judicial branch budgets, the procedure is different. There is a separation of powers
protection that must be safeguarded. Under the law I have cited, the OMB and the President must pass through the budget requests presented by these branches without alteration. That procedure
was designed to be a reasonable and workable protection of the constitutional distinction among the three independent branches of government.
When we first receive and learn about legislative branch budgets, they are as contained or as will be contained in the President's budget.
There is no OMB/White House "interlocutor" putting a political or funding policy "spin" on the agencies when they submit their budgets. The internal processes of the legislative agencies are the only constraint on their budgets before they see the light of day. So the task of making reductions in these budgets falls upon this Committee.
As we go through these hearings, we will review each request carefully and ask whether or not it is essential to the workings of the Legislative Branch, or can be cut back.
we have held the
I think our record has been good
have really had a level budget in real terms.
The fiscal year 1994 budget does represent an increase over
1993 appropriations. However, the Committee will undoubtedly make reductions when we mark the bill up
- just as we do every year.
COMMENTS FROM MR. YOUNG
Mr. YOUNG. Mr. Chairman, thank you very much.
I would like to say I look forward to continuing the excellent relationship that we have enjoyed over the years as we sit officially on the subcommittee. I apologize in advance for those on our side. We are new to this subcommittee, and tend to be very curious. There may be some answers to questions that you would know automatically that we will have to ask about. If you will bear with us, we would like to do that in order to be responsible in our approach to the funding of the legislative branch.
Personally, and each Member can speak for themselves, but I tend to agree with you, I don't like the across-the-board cuts. I don't think just lopping off a percent of everything is the way to make reductions in spending. If there are going to be reductions, I prefer to target them to areas where we believe they can be directed without adversely affecting the operations of the House. Operation of the House, of course, is essential because it is the peoples' House.
I am not going to extend my remarks any further than this. You will find I don't like to take a lot of time making speeches or statements. I tend to have a lot of questions on occasion.
I would like to ask one thing, because of the change in the organization of the House structure in the last Congress, some of the Members, I am sure, understand exactly what happened and who the players are. I don't. I wonder if anybody has a diagram that shows the various agencies of the House, who runs those particular departments that we can look at.
Donn, do you have anything like that?
Mr. ANDERSON. Mr. Young, we have our own organizational chart. The changes have not been effected yet except for the transfer of the General Counsel's Office, which was done by an amendment to the House rules. The changes will take place as directed and scheduled by the Committee on House Administration. For the time being, each of the administrative officers is still responsible for the matters that were under their jurisdiction in the last Congress save for the Office of the Postmaster, which has been formally transferred to the Office of the Director of Non-legislative and Financial Services.
Mr. YOUNG. Do you have a diagram of the way that it will be? Mr. ANDERSON. We don't.
Mr. YOUNG. One of those charts with the boxes and the wires? Mr. ANDERSON. We don't have an updated one now. We can provide written information for the record.
Mr. YOUNG. That will be helpful to me.
[The information follows:]
Pursuant to H.Res. 423, the "House Administrative Reform Resolution of 1992”, the responsibility for the operation of the Office of Finance and all functions, entities, duties and responsibilities under the House Postmaster have been transferred to the Director of Nonlegislative and Financial Services.
Under the terms of the resolution, the following functions and entities are proposed to be transferred to the Director of Non-legislative and Financial Services: Office of Employee Assistance, pay and mileage of Members, House Information Systems, Office Furnishings, Office Supply Service, Office Systems Management, Placement Office, Special Services Office, Telecommunications, Telephone Exchange, Typewriter Repair, Barber Shop, Beauty Shop, House Restaurant System,