114TH CONGRESS CONVENES: BUDGET OUTLOOK AND COMMITTEE ASSIGNMENTS

The 114th Congress convened earlier this month and with it comes new committee assignments. With the Republicans now in the majority in the Senate, most of the shake up will be in that chamber. Notable changes include:

Senate Appropriations: Thad Cochran (R-MS) will be the Chairman and Barbara Mikulski (D-MD) will be Ranking Member. The committee will have seven new members. The State-Foreign Operations Appropriations Subcommittee will have several new members as well.

Senate Foreign Relations: Bob Corker (R-TN) will assume the Chairmanship and Bob Menendez (D-NJ) will become Ranking Member.

House Appropriations: Republicans will have four new members on the committee. Kay Granger (R-TX) was granted a waiver to continue to serve as Chairwoman of the State-Foreign Operations Subcommittee.

The appropriations process for Fiscal Year 2016 (FY16) will begin next month when President Obama sends his budget request to Congress in early February. Last year, the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) requested that federal departments and agencies submit two FY16 budget requests to OMB. One request reflects sequestration and is at flat funding and the other at 5% above current spending levels. It is expected that the Administration will propose a budget that reflects the latter request and increases discretionary spending above sequester levels with savings and revenue increases found elsewhere in the budget.

Read more about committee assignments and the FY16 budget process at U.S. Global Leadership Coalition.