In 2013, the Bipartisan Budget Act negotiated by Representative Paul Ryan (R-WI) and Senator Patty Murray (D-WA) provided partial, temporary relief from sequestration. Unfortunately full sequestration is due to return in 2016. In response, NDD United, an alliance of organizations working together to protect nondefense discretionary funding, has renewed its efforts to bring an end to sequestration.
On February 18th, the National Coalition for Literacy joined more than 2,100 nondefense discretionary (NDD) United organizations to urge Congress and President Obama to work together to end sequestration. This letter, co-signed by NCL, emphasizes (1) the importance of NDD programs, (2) the harmful effects of budget cuts to date, and (3) the equal importance of both defense and nondefense programs in America’s security at home and abroad, and thus the need for equal sequestration relief.
Cuts to date have had significant impacts on the lives of Americans as demonstrated in NDD United’s 2013 report “Faces of Austerity: How Budget Cuts Make Us Sicker, Poorer, and Less Secure.”
“Unless theses restraints on federal spending are loosened, it’s unlikely that even the marginal funding increases authorized by the new Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA) will ever see the light of day,” notes Jeff Carter, President of the National Coalition for Literacy.
Deficit reduction measures enacted since 2010 have come overwhelmingly from spending cuts. So far, Congress and the President have been unable to agree on a plan to replace the damaging cuts. As work begins on the 2016 budget, NCL will continue to press the Congress and the President to eliminate or replace sequestration.