Urge Congress to Pass Fiscal Year 2015 Omnibus Bill NOW!

Congress returns on November 12 to begin a post-election “lame duck” session.  During this short session, Congress must act to fund the federal government. Currently, all federal agencies are operating under a “continuing resolution,” which expires on December 11, 2014.   Congress can either pass another short-term continuing resolution or an omnibus spending bill to fund the federal government for the rest of fiscal year (FY) 2015, which ends on September 30, 2015.

PLEASE CONTACT YOUR U.S. REPRESENTATIVE AND TWO U.S. SENATORS TO URGE THEM TO PASS A FISCAL YEAR 2015 OMNIBUS FUNDING BILL BEFORE DECEMBER 11.  

If Congress fails to pass a comprehensive, final funding bill for FY 2015 and opts instead to fund the federal government through one or more short-term continuing resolutions, most federal agencies will be funded at last year’s levels. Further, agencies will be operating in an atmosphere of fiscal uncertainty, unable to make long-term investments and plans.

For example, without knowing its final FY 2015 funding level, the U.S. Census Bureau cannot confidently keep Census 2020 field tests, systems development, and research activities on schedule. The National Institutes of Health cannot issue new funding proposals or award new grants and contracts. A long-term continuing resolution would abdicate Congress’ primary responsibility to fund the government and provide the agencies with necessary programmatic guidance.  Further, failure to pass a long-term omnibus bill in this session of Congress will complicate progress on the FY 2016 appropriations process, which begins early next year when the President submits his proposed budget to Congress.

SUGGESTED MESSAGE FOR YOUR MEMBERS CONGRESS:

Dear Senator/Representative,

I am your constituent and a population scientist at (name of institution) who relies on direct and indirect support from the federal government, particularly from the National Institutes of Health, National Science Foundation, Census Bureau, and other federal statistical agencies, to conduct my research and train the next generation of population scientists. Without a complete FY 2015 omnibus appropriations bill, these agencies, along with the rest of the federal government, are left in state of uncertainty and inability to make short and long-term investments.

Before the current continuing resolution expires on December 11, I urge you to work with your colleagues in Congress and with the Administration to pass an omnibus Fiscal Year 2015 appropriations bill, restoring more stability and certainty in the federal appropriations process and in the federal government.

Thank you for your attention to my views.

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