H.R. 1105 2009 Omnibus Spending Passed
Today Obama signed into law the 2009 Omnibus Spending bill. As mentioned in a previous post, the bill funds operations for many government programs at the cost of $410B. Much of the spending is based from previous budgets, but this package does include increases in all programs with about $7B in earmarks.
The overall spending increase from the previous year is approximately 8% or $32B according to the Committee on Appropriations office. This increase does not include the already identified funds from the Stimulus package which bring the entire spending to $680B.
House Appropriations Ranking Republican Jerry Lewis summarizes in this section of a speech he gave on the house floor:
“Mr. Speaker, like many of my colleagues, I’m embarrassed by this Omnibus spending bill and the process that created it. Even as the President talks about the need to put our economic house in order, this House continues to spend and spend and spend and spend. Clearly, this Congress has lost its way.
“Not one of the nine spending bills in this Omnibus was ever considered by the full House. Six of the nine bills in this package were never considered by the full Appropriations Committee. One more time we’re spending hundreds of billions of dollars with no debate, no amendments, and no Member input. Yes, clearly this Congress has lost its way.
“It’s now standard operating procedure that only a handful of Members in leadership are actually involved in writing significant legislation. That has been true with every supplemental spending package the House has considered over the last two years. That was true in the development of the $789 billion stimulus package passed by the House two weeks ago. And that is true once again today
“Under the rule just adopted, Members have one hour to debate $410 billion in spending with no opportunity to offer amendments. That equates to nearly $7 billion for every minute of debate. Sadly, the vast majority of our Members will have no voice in crafting this measure.
“The fiscal year 2009 Omnibus bill contains funding for nine out of the 12 regular appropriations bills—a total of $410 billion. The new fiscal year began on October 1st and today—nearly five months later—we’re jamming the work that should have been done last year into one massive, last-minute, “take-it-or-leave-it” spending bill.
“The spending in this legislation represents a $32 billion, or eight percent, increase over last year for the very same agencies and programs. With the exception of the spending boost after the September 11th attacks, this represents the largest annual federal government spending increase since 1978.