What’s included in Biden’s budget proposal?
The Biden administration released its budget request for fiscal year 2023 on March 28, 2022, calling for $5.8 trillion in federal spending and a $1.2 trillion deficit.
The president’s budget includes $1.6 trillion in discretionary spending, funding boosts for nearly every agency, and tax hikes for corporations and wealthy households.
Biden’s budget by the numbers
- The budget total is $5.8 trillion for fiscal 2023, including $1.6 trillion in discretionary spending.
- The budget also projects a $1.2 trillion deficit in fiscal 2023 – a significant drop from the last two years.
Key takeaways from Biden’s budget
The budget covers a wide range of policy and funding priorities for the administration, including the following highlights:
Focus on deficit reduction – part of an effort from the administration to appeal to moderate Democrats as they negotiate the broader social spending and tax package previously called the Build Back Better agenda, which has stalled in the Senate.
- This budget would reduce deficit spending by $1 trillion over the decade, in large part because of major proposed tax increases on corporations and the wealthy.
Climate initiatives span several agencies – including the U.S. Departments of Agriculture, Energy, and the Interior, and the Environmental Protection Agency.
- In the Agriculture Department, the budget proposes backing as much as $6.5 billion in loans to rural electricity providers that are transitioning to clean energy, including support for energy storage and transmission projects.
- The budget would increase the Interior Department’s funding for renewable energy development by almost 150% and allocate $5 billion to climate adaptation.
Health proposals address cancer research and mental health – the budget asks for $5 billion for Biden’s proposed Advanced Research Projects Agency for Health, which would invest heavily in cancer research as part of Biden’s Cancer Moonshot and other breakthrough treatments research.
- Another focus of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services budget request is mental health. The budget asks for $3.5 billion for new mental health mandatory funding proposals, including applying mental health parity requirements to Medicare and expanding enforcement of existing laws that require insurers to provide the same level of coverage as they do for physical care.
- There’s also money for mental health included in other agencies – like $1 billion for the U.S. Department of Education to increase the number of mental health professionals in schools, especially following pandemic disruptions.
Domestic manufacturing programs boosted – including a major boost for the National Institute of Standards and Technology’s manufacturing programs to expand domestic manufacturing and ease supply chain woes.
- The request includes $372 million for NIST manufacturing programs, which is about a $206 billion increase from fiscal year 2021.
Several major proposals not included:
- There isn’t new funding for Covid-19 or for the war in Ukraine.
- The budget doesn’t include the formerly called Build Back Better agenda, but it does have a deficit-neutral reserve fund to serve as a placeholder to fully pay for whatever plan they turn to next.