Brown Announces Investment Budget
Today, George E. Brown, Jr. (D-CA), ranking Democrat on the House Committee on Science, announced plans to introduce legislation to promote Federal investments. This plan is designed to balance the Federal budget by 2002 while establishing sustained investments in research and development, capital infrastructure, and education and training.
In announcing this plan, Brown said, "Everyone in Washington agrees on the easy question: Do we balance the budget by 2002 or not? The obvious answer is 'Yes, we will.' The harder question is how should we do it. It makes no sense to provide our nation with a balanced budget if we do it by killing the programs that create new jobs, rebuild our decaying bridges and roads, and educate the leaders and workers of tomorrow. My budget plan balances investment spending with consumption spending to achieve a stable, sustainable growth path for the economy of the next century."
The proposed investment budget will follow the plan laid out by Brown in the 104th Congress in which specific targets for growth in investments in research and development, physical capital, and ground, air, and water transportation systems are achieved within an overall balanced budget. Those investments will be offset through changes in entitlement programs, such as adjustments in the Consumer Price Index, and curbing growth in non-investment discretionary programs. The plan also postpones any proposed tax cuts until the budget is balanced.
Brown added, "Every household, every business is faced with the task of balancing its books while making investments for the future - a college fund for the kids, meeting a monthly mortgage payment or investing in a new computer. This budget plan does exactly the same thing for the Federal Government."
FEDERAL INVESTMENTS INCLUDED
IN THE BROWN INVESTMENT BUDGET
The Investment Budget will provide for moderate growth and a sustained level of funding for Federal research and development programs, physical capital infrastructure, and education and training programs that have the potential to lead to future economic growth and productivity. Public investments targeted by the legislation will include the following:
- National Science Foundation programs
- National Aeronautics and Space Administration programs
- Department of Energy basic research programs, fossil energy research, energy supply research and development, and energy conservation programs
- National Institute of Standards and Technology programs including scientific research and industrial technology services
- National Oceanic and Atmospheric programs, including modernization of the National Weather Service, satellite and environmental programs, and coastal, ocean, and fishery programs.
- Department of Defense Research and Development
- Health research and training
- EPA environmental regulatory, research and enforcement programs
- Hazardous Waste Superfund program
- Agriculture research and development programs, including extension activities, and cooperative state research activities
- Department of Agriculture rural development and economic development assistance programs
- Ground, air and water transportation programs
- Elementary, secondary, and vocational education programs
- Higher education programs
- Training and employment programs
- Social Service programs, including the National Service Initiative, rehabilitation services, and Children and Family Services programs
- Special Supplemental Food Program for Women, Infants and Children (WIC)