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    Trump’s Skinny Budget Fattens Defense; Squeezes Workforce Programs

    The Trump Administration is due to release its FY 2018 “skinny” budget by mid-March, but we already know some of what it contains. It’s called a skinny budget because it lacks the full narrative of policy prescriptions found in the full budget. You could also call it skinny for what it does to workforce programs. We anticipate a 10 to 15 percent cut below the 2018 sequester level, a cut itself that will reduce these programs from their 2017 levels.

    The budget blueprint would increase defense spending by $54 billion to $603 billion and decrease non-defense discretionary spending to $462 billion. And that is before additional funds for the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) and Department of Homeland Security, which could drive down that figure even further. If that happens, then non-defense spending will fall to its lowest percentage of gross domestic product (3.09 percent) since 1962. That’s the year the Beatles replaced Pete Best with Ringo Starr, the Los Angeles Dodgers played their first game at Dodger Stadium and actor/comedian Jim Carey was born.

    Under that budget scenario, every non-defense program will be subject to deep cuts. Over the past few years, Goodwill® has worked with other workforce allies to finally put workforce programs back on steady ground. We will keep you posted as we learn more about the President’s FY 2018 budget.

    But, first things first. We’re five months into the 2017 fiscal year, and Congress still hasn’t finished the FY 2017 spending bills. Funding for workforce programs hangs in the balance. Please click to take action, and tell your representatives and senators to adopt adequate funding levels for workforce programs.

    Paul Seifert
    Senior Public Policy Specialist
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