The Congressional Black Caucus (CBC), which historically submits alternatives to budgets proposed by both Republican and Democratic presidents and House majorities, has released its alternative for fiscal year 2014.
According to the CBC, its alternative reduces the deficit and alleviates harm inflicted by austerity measures in a responsible and fiscally sound manner. The CBC FY 2014 alternative also is pitched as increasing economic opportunities by investing in education, infrastructure, housing, job training and through modernization of our military.
In addition, the CBC says its budget protects and enhances the social safety net that "continues to save millions from poverty." It calls for significant investments in these functions to "accelerate our economic recovery and to ensure our recovery is felt in every community in America."
Highlighted CBC Budget elements:
Raises $1 trillion in new revenue to avoid sequestration. "The self-inflicted economic disaster will needlessly threaten our recovery."
Protects and enhances Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid, SNAP, TANF and other "vital safety net programs that save millions of families from poverty."
Enacts tax reform measures to pay for the needs of the nation, raising over $4 trillion in new revenue over the next decade by:
- Ending special tax breaks and close tax loopholes ( $1 trillion over 10 years.)
- Limiting tax preferences for corporate debt ($1.151 trillion over 10 years.)
- Enacting the "Buffet Rule" and millionaires surcharge ($460 billion over 10 years.)
- Reducing the "tax gap" through better tax enforcement ($107 billion over 10-years.)
- Ending the mortgage deduction for vacation homes and yachts ($10 billion over 10 years.)
The CBC says its budget creates jobs and opportunity by increasing funds for:
- Maintenance and repair for public transit, highways, airports, ports, railroads, bridges and other infrastructure investments. ($230 billion)
- Workforce development programs such as the Workforce Investment Act Adult Program, the Dislocated Workers Program, Job Corps and other employment and training services. ($13 billion)
- Providing relief to states to preserve teacher, law enforcement and first-responder jobs ($50 billion)
- Neighborhood stabilization programs that provide affordable housing development, infrastructure improvements and other community development needs. ($50 billion)
- Veterans' programs that "honor our commitment to help our nation's soldiers after they come back from serving our country." (Increased by $50 billion)
Also, the CBC FY 2014 budget:
- Addresses health disparities by fully funding the Affordable Care Act and providing strong support of the National Institute of Health.
- Helps keep college affordable by increasing funds for the Pell Grant program so that federal assistance can keep pace with increasing tuition costs.