Permanent Appropriations: Budget authority that becomes available as the result of previously enacted legislation (substantive legislation or prior appropriations act) and does not require current action by Congress. Budget authority is considered to be “current” if provided in the current session of Congress and “permanent” if provided in prior sessions.
A revolving fund, which is a fund established by Congress to finance a cycle of businesslike operations through amounts received by the fund, is a form of permanent appropriation.
For permanent appropriations, OMB and agencies identify PPAs (Program, Project, or Activity) by the program and financing schedules that the president provides in the “Detailed Budget Estimates” in the budget submission for the relevant fiscal year.
Also see Budget Deficit / Budget Surplus; Date Shifting / Fiscal Transparency / Fiscal Illusion; Revolving Fund; Terms and Sessions of Congress; § 7.80 Authorizations and Appropriations Processes, in Congressional Deskbook.
From Congressional Procedure, Chapter 7.A. Introduction – The Congressional Budget and Other Special Cases:
The budget is like a personal budget—your plan for how much money you expect to be earning, how much money you will spend and how you will spend it.
Authorizations may be thought of as decisions you might make that impact your budget, such as signing an apartment lease, buying an automobile, purchasing a home, or even having a child.
Appropriations are like payments you actually make under your budget, like paying the rent, utility bills, or buying groceries. You might have budgeted $300 for groceries, but ended up spending $350. Your appropriation is $350.
If you spend more than you bring in, you must borrow the difference. If you spend less, you have a surplus and may be able to invest it or save for a child’s education.
- Pay and Perquisites of Members of Congress
- “‘Real’ Federal Deficit Four Times Official Number,” by Jason Sorens, Pileus, June 5, 2012
- Detailed Budget Estimates by Agency – OMB
- 31 U.S.C. § 1305 – Miscellaneous Permanent Appropriations
- “Overview of the Authorization-Appropriation Process,” CRS Report RS20371 (5-page PDF)
- “Salaries of Members of Congress: Congressional Votes, 1990-2010,” CRS Report 97-615 (36-page PDF)
- “Budget Process and Enforcement,” Parliamentary Boot Camp (4-page PDF)
- “Overview of Funding Mechanisms in the Federal Budget Process, and Selected Examples,” CRS Report R44582 (48-page PDF)
- “Department of Homeland Security Appropriations: Fiscal Year 2018,” CRS Report R44927 (44-page PDF)
- “Shutdown of the Federal Government: Causes, Processes, and Effects,” CRS Report RL34680 (49-page PDF)
- Congressional Operations Briefing – Capitol Hill Workshop
- Drafting Federal Legislation and Amendments
- Writing for Government and Business: Critical Thinking and Writing
- Custom, On-Site Training
- Congressional Operations Poster, with Federal Budget Process Flowchart
- Federal Budgeting, a Five-Course series on CD
- Congress, the Legislative Process, and the Fundamentals of Lawmaking Series, a Nine-Course series on CD
The Federal Budget Process 2E
Citizen’s Handbook to Influencing Elected Officials: A Guide for Citizen Lobbyists and Grassroots Advocates
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