Brown to Introduce Investment Budget Plan
Congressman George E. Brown, Jr., has developed a comprehensive Federal balanced budget proposal that provides for significant growth in education, training, research and capital infrastructure programs. The Congressional Budget Office (CBO) has reviewed the Brown budget plan and acknowledged, based on CBO assumptions, that it does lead to a balanced budget by 2002. Brown intends to introduce a budget resolution when Congress returns from the Easter recess.
"The budget process is currently at a stalemate," said Brown. "The President’s budget fails to balance and the Republican leadership has not provided an alternative proposal. My budget plan shows that it is possible both to balance the budget and to attend to the most pressing domestic challenge - investing in the Nation’s future. I hope that my plan will help break the budget stalemate and provide a useful starting point for moving the process forward."
Brown continued, "Under my budget we would stop borrowing from our children to pay for our spending habits and we would leave them a set of investments - in science and technology, in our economy’s infrastructure, and in the quality of our workforce - that will guarantee our Nation’s future prosperity.
"Any budget is an expression of a country’s priorities," added Brown. "I cannot imagine a more important set of priorities than investing in our children’s future by enhancing our education system, building a public works infrastructure to meet the needs of the 21st Century and continuing to push at the frontiers of knowledge."
The Brown budget proposal calls for 5% annual increases through 2002 in civilian research and development programs, expands support for capital infrastructure projects and fully funds the President’s Federal education and job training initiatives. It offsets these expenditures through freezing defense spending at the FY1997 level, reducing the Consumer Price Index by 0.5% (largely anticipating Bureau of Labor Statistics changes in the way the CPI is calculated), and by embracing the "Blue Dog" budget’s entitlement reform package. There are no tax cuts included in the Brown budget.
Last week, the CBO confirmed that the Brown budget plan produces a surplus of $3 billion in 2002. Brown said, "I am very pleased at the CBO analysis. It proves that you can balance the budget without destroying programs that represent important investments for the country."