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Congressional Update

Appropriations Bill Includes Reductions to County-Related Programs

By Laura Garcia
TAC Deputy Legislative Director

Congress recently approved, and the president signed, H.R. 2112, legislation which includes the FY 2012 appropriations bills for several federal agencies, including those with jurisdiction over issues relating to criminal justice, rural development, as well as transportation. The bill includes some reductions to county-related programs from the FY 2011 appropriated amounts. Below is a breakdown of some of the funding impacting counties:

State and Local Law Enforcement Activities Provides $2.2 billion, which is $570 million, or 20 percent, below the FY 2011 funding level, for grants to assist local and state law enforcement.

  • The Byrne Justice Assistance Grant (JAG) formula program is funded at $470 million, which is $39 million less than the FY 2011 funding level;
  • The State Criminal Alien Assistance Program (SCAAP) receives $240 million in funding, which is $34 million less than the FY 2011 funding level;
  • The Juvenile Accountability Block Grant is funded at $30 million, which is $16 million less than FY 2011;
  • Juvenile Justice Title V Incentive Grants for Local Delinquency Prevention programs are funded at $20 million, which is $34 million less than FY 2011; and
  • Community Oriented Policing Services (COPS) hiring grants are funded at $166 million, which is $80 million less than FY 2011.

Transportation

  • The federal aid highway program is slated to receive $39.9 billion in funding.

Community Development Block Grants (CDBG) formula program

  • CDBG formula grants are funded at $2.95 billion, which is $388 million below the FY 2011 funding level.

Rural Development

  • Rural Water and Waste Disposal programs: $513 million to support both grants and loans, which is about $15 million or three percent less than the FY 2011 funding level.
  • Rural Community Facilities programs: $24.3 million to support grants, which is a $17 million or 41 percent cut from the FY 2011 funding level; $1.3 billion to support direct loans.

Three-Percent Withholding Mandate Repealed

Legislation that repeals the federal mandate requiring certain state and local governments to withhold three percent from certain payments was recently approved by Congress and signed by the president. The legislation, H.R. 674, sponsored by Rep. Wally Herger (R-California), repeals a provision of the Tax Increase Prevention and Reconciliation Act of 2005 that requires counties that spend $100 million or more annually to withhold three percent of their payments for certain goods and services and remit the amount to the Internal Revenue Service. The mandate was scheduled to take effect on Jan. 1, 2013.