In the coming months, we will gain a more precise understanding of what will be in and what will be out over the next four (and possibly eight) years after the OMB releases the full budget, and Congressional committees start sorting through and adjusting these priorities on their own. Nevertheless, it seems likely the Congress will follow Trump's emphasis on Homeland Security, Defense and Veterans Affairs. One response to his budget cuts might be to adjust (or re-imagine) your existing programs so that they align with the priorities he is setting. Below, the folks from Management Concepts review how Trump proposes to impact the budgets of still other federal departments, as follows:
Department of the Interior
- Eliminating the Abandoned Mine Land grants, National Heritage Areas, and National Wildlife Refuge fund payments
- Reducing funding for more recent demonstration projects and initiatives that only serve a few Tribes.
- Leveragin] taxpayer investment with public and private resources through wildlife conservation, historic preservation, and recreation grants. These voluntary programs encourage partnerships by providing matching funds that produce greater benefits to taxpayers for the Federal dollars invested.
Department of Justice
- Safeguarding Federal grants to State, local, and tribal law enforcement and victims of crime to ensure greater safety for law enforcement personnel and the people they serve. Critical programs aimed at protecting the life and safety of State and local law enforcement personnel, including Preventing Violence Against Law Enforcement Officer Resilience and Survivability and the Bulletproof Vest Partnership, are protected.
Department of Labor
- Eliminating the Senior Community Service Employment Program
- Eliminating the Bureau of International Labor Affairs' grant funding
- Decreasing funding for job training and employment service formula grants
- Eliminating the Office of Disability Employment Policy's technical assistance grants
- Eliminating the Occupational Safety and Health Administration's "unproven" training grants
Department of Transportation
- Eliminating funding for the TIGER discretionary grant program
Department of the Treasury
- Eliminating funding for the Community Development Financial Institutions (CDFI) Fund grant
- Environmental Protection Agency
- Reducing categorical grants by $482 million
- Eliminating more than 50 EPA programs, including: Energy Star, Targeted Airshed Grants, and infrastructure assistance to Alaska Native Villages and the Mexico Border
Small Business Administration
- Eliminating PRIME Technical assistance grants, Regional Innovation Clusters, and Growth Accelerators
- Following the budget’s release, Congress reviews the proposal and adopts a budget resolution, which sets spending thresholds. Congress then begins the appropriations process, which determines funding for each program.
- Since the President and members of Congress are elected by different constituencies, the priorities for Congress frequently differ from the President’s, therefore it is important to note that many of the budget’s proposals are unlikely to be enacted.
Once OMB releases the full budget, and Congress begins its work, we will have a better understanding of how grant programs will fare in the coming years. If you are like me, you may be surprised to learn that some of these programs even existed in the first place. It is so easy to underestimate the size and scope of the federal government. Many of its programs only appeal to small, distinct interest groups and the rest of us do not have the time or the incentive to learn about them.
In my experience, the best place to look for guidance regarding your own agency's federal grant supply is through your Washington lobbyist or through the staff of your local congressional representative.