Final FY 2011 Federal Appropriations Bill
The House, Senate, and White House have negotiated an agreement to fund the federal government through fiscal year 2011 (which began on October 1, 2010 and ends September 30, 2011). The final FY 2011 continuing resolution (CR) will prevent a federal government shutdown. The bill cuts $78.5 billion from the President’s FY 2011 budget request and is $38.5 billion below FY 2010 enacted levels. The nearly $40 billion in cuts represents the single biggest cut to the federal budget in one year.
The April 12 Senate Appropriations Committee press release of highlights of the FY 2011 CR touts the bill as bipartisan legislation which makes tough choices while protecting critical priorities, while also stating that “The final legislation rejects the draconian cuts and onerous policy riders proposed in H.R. 1. The reductions in funding levels agreed to in this bill will impact millions of Americans, and many good programs will suffer difficult cuts.”
The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) is funded at $70.6 billion in FY 2011 (which is $2.4 billion below FY 2010 enacted levels and $5.2 billion more than proposed in H.R. 1). Highlights of the bill–directly from a Senate press release of a FY 2011 CR summary for Labor, HHS, and Education– related to early childhood and families include:
- Head Start: The bill provides $7.575 billion for Head Start, $340 million more than FY 10 and over $1.4 billion more than H.R. 1. This will maintain the number of children currently in Head Start. H.R. 1 would have cut 218,000 low-income children and their families from the program, closed 16,000 Head Start classrooms, and laid off 55,000 teachers, teacher assistants, and related staff.
- Child Care: The bill provides $2.227 billion for the Child Care and Development Block Grant, $100 million more than the FY10 level and $139 million more than H.R. 1.
- Community Services Block Grant (CSBG): The bill provides $680 million for CSBG, $20 million less than FY 10 but $285 million more than H.R.1.
- Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP): The bill provides $4.71 billion for LIHEAP, $390 million less than FY 10. However, it maintains the base formula grant to states at last year’s level of $4.51 billion.
- Health Resources and Services Administration: The bill provides $6.27 billion in discretionary funding for HRSA, which includes funding for such programs as Community Health Centers, health professions training, the Ryan White Care Act, and Title X Family Planning. This level is $1.2 billion below the comparable FY10 level and $900 million above the level contained in H.R. 1. Some HRSA programs will receive new funding in FY11 through the Affordable Care Act (e.g., home visitation program).
- Early Learning Challenge Fund/Race to the Top: The final legislation provides $700 million for the Race to the Top education reform program, which will now include a new initiative to improve the quality of State early childhood care and education.
The House summary of the final FY 2011 CR also stresses the maintained investments in education and early childhood saying, “The CR preserves funding for large education programs that fund elementary and secondary schools as well as special education and provides a modest increase for Head Start to ensure that all children currently enrolled will continue to receive services, while making prudent reductions in lower priority areas.”