President’s Budget (CongressionalGlossary.com)

From the Congressional Glossary – Including Legislative and Budget Terms

President’s Budget

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The document sent to Congress by the President in January or February of each year, as required by law (31 U.S.C. § 1105), requesting new budget authority for federal programs and estimating federal revenues and outlays for the upcoming fiscal year and 4 subsequent out years. Although the title of the document is Budget of the U.S. Government, it represents proposals for congressional consideration.

The principal volumes currently part of the president’s annual budget submission include:

  • Budget (officially the Budget of the United States Government) – includes the president’s budget message, presentations on the president’s major budgetary initiatives organized by department and major agencies (or, in some years, by budget function), discussions of management initiatives and performance data, and summary tables.
  • Appendix – sets forth detailed information for accounts within each department and agency, including funding levels, program descriptions, proposed appropriations language, and object classification and employment data.
  • Analytical Perspectives – contains analyses and information on specific aspects of the budget or budget-related areas, such as budget and performance integration, economic assumptions, and current services estimates; crosscutting programs, such as research and development, federal investment, and aid to state and local governments; and budget process reform proposals.
  • Historical Tables – provides data, covering an extended time period, on receipts, budget authority, outlays, deficits and surpluses, federal debt, and other matters.

Within a few days of the submission of the budget, the president also transmits an annual Economic Report of the President to Congress, which includes the report of the Council of Economic Advisers. The president is required by law to update his submissions, and he does this in a far briefer, more summary fashion in his Mid-session Review, which is due by July 15.

Online access to the president’s budget documents is available in several places, including the Office of Management and Budget web site, and GPO’s Federal Digital System under “Collections” select “Budget of the United States Government.” Also see CDDocs.com.

See also Budget Deficit / Budget Surplus; Byrd Rule; Office of Management and Budget (OMB); OMB Circular No. A-11; Guide to Understanding the Presidential Budget; § 7.40 Presidential Budget Process, § 8.20 Congress and the Executive: Legislation, in Congressional Deskbook.

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