A Mini-Bargain to Improve the Budget Updated for Disaster Relief

For Immediate Release

As Congress continues to consider hurricane relief funding, the Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget re-released its "A Mini-Bargain to Improve the Budget" proposal with a new plan to help finance disaster relief efforts.

The following is a statement by Maya MacGuineas, president of the Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget:

Ultimately, the United States needs a grand bargain to fix the debt. However, our newly updated mini-bargain would be an important step forward. Our plan ensures tax reform and other new legislation is fiscally responsible, it offers a way to pay for sequester relief, and it puts forward a down payment on deficit reduction while also raising the debt limit, improving the budget process, and establishing a commission to fix Social Security.

Today’s update also includes new proposals to finance the costs of recent costly and tragic natural disasters.

Hurricanes Maria, Harvey, and Irma and the wildfires have wreaked havoc and destruction to U.S. states and territories, resulting in untold billions in damage and a tragic human toll. The federal government should of course step in and meet any immediate needs by whatever means necessary, but at the same time, we must recognize that disasters are becoming costlier by the year and need to be offset.

The federal government spent more on rebuilding efforts following Hurricane Sandy than it did on higher education, agriculture, or the Department of Homeland Security in that year.

To finance disaster relief, our “A Mini-Bargain to Improve the Budget” proposes $100 billion worth of tax and spending changes, including a mix of offsets that come from reprioritizing existing funding streams and enacting new policies to help mitigate some of the root causes of increasingly frequent natural disasters.

This mini-bargain is a first step back in the direction of fiscal responsibility, and it would restore confidence in the ability of Congress to strike bipartisan compromise on behalf of the American people.


For more information contact Patrick Newton, Press Secretary, at newton@crfb.org.