Capitol Corner

Bush's budget proposal

On Feb. 4, the Bush administration formally released a proposal for the fiscal year 2003 federal budget. The administration is seeking $2.13 trillion in overall spending for the fiscal year, which begins Oct. 1, and sent its budget request to Congress to begin the appropriations process by which federal agencies and programs are funded.

According to The Washington Post, Bush's budget would cut funds for some youth job-training programs but would increase funding for Job Corps by $73 million. NRCA is conducting a pilot program with Job Corps in Callicoon, N.Y. (For more information about the NRCA/Job Corps Roofing Training Program, see "Training for skills and success," June 2001 issue, page 32, or visit NRCA's Web site, www.nrca.net.)

Bush's budget would increase federal spending by 9 percent over fiscal year 2002, but when defense, homeland security and economic stimulus are removed from the budget formula, the growth figure drops to 2 percent. This means many agencies and programs would see their budgets cut, frozen or only grow slightly. For example, Bush is seeking a reduction in Environmental Protection Agency spending from $7.9 billion in 2002 to $7.6 billion in 2003. The Occupational Safety and Health Administration's budget would be cut by 1.3 percent from the 2002 level to $437 million.

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