February 12, 2013
AIBS joined more than 3,200 organizations from all sectors of the economy and society to urge Congress and President Obama to put an immediate end to sequestration budget cuts that threaten to send the economy reeling back into recession and destroy more than two million American jobs.
The Nondefense Discretionary (NDD) United community delivered a letter to Congress, urging leaders to avert sequestration by adopting a "balanced approach to deficit reduction that does not include further cuts to NDD programs." Joining together in this effort are national, state, and local organizations from all fifty states representing the health, education, law enforcement, science, housing, workforce, transportation, and faith communities, among others. Despite their diverse priorities, these organizations share a common purpose of protecting core government functions.
Congress needs to work with the White House to come up with a bipartisan, balanced compromise that does not deepen the cuts that discretionary programs have already sustained. In 2011, NDD spending represented less than one-fifth of the federal budget. Under strict discretionary caps in the bipartisan Budget Control Act, by 2021 NDD spending will decline to the lowest level in at least 50 years. If sequestration is allowed to take effect, cuts to NDD programs will be even deeper. Over the past two years, discretionary programs have already contributed substantially to deficit reduction through some $1.5 trillion in spending cuts. During that time, NDD programs were cut by 9 percent on average, with many programs cut by as much as 50 percent. Continued cuts will have consequences for every American, threatening the health, safety, and competitiveness of the United States.
The letter explains some of what Americans will lose if Congress and President Obama do not avert sequestration through a balanced approach to deficit reduction.