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Congress OKs Judiciary's Fiscal Year 2007 Funding
It was called a continuing resolution, but in effect House Joint
Resolution 20 was the long-awaited $464 billion appropriations bill for
fiscal year 2007. Just hours before the continuing resolution, PL
109-383, was due to expire on February 15, Congress approved
appropriations for most of the government through September 30, 2007.
The funding came over four months into the fiscal year. For the
remaining months of FY 2007, the Judiciary will receive $5.980 billion
in enacted appropriations, a 4.9 percent increase over 2006.
Only two fiscal year 2007 spending bills were approved
before the 109th Congress ended in December 2006. The FY 2007
Transportation, Housing and Urban Development, the Judiciary, the
District of Columbia, and Independent Agencies Appropriation bill was
one of nine uncompleted appropriations bills waiting for the 110th
Congress when it began in January 2007. Under PL 109-383, agencies and
programs had been operating at fiscal year 2006 funding levels. The new
funding bill gives the Judiciary an increase over FY 2006 levels and is
expected to be signed by the President.
The Judiciary’s original FY 2007 request had been for
$6.26 billion. However, operating under a continuing resolution for
several months has meant freezes in hiring, training and purchasing for
the Judiciary, "essentially reducing our requirements to the bare
minimum," said Administrative Office Director Jim Duff. "The 4.9 percent
increase should be sufficient for the federal courts to maintain
current services and take on some increases in workload for what remains
of the fiscal year," he said. "We are very grateful that Congress has
funded the Judiciary at this level for the remainder of FY 2007 during a
period of a general hard freeze for much of government."
|The Judiciary Requested || |
|The Judiciary Received |
|$6.51 billion for FY 2008 ||Request pending with Congress |
|$6.26 billion for FY 2007 ||$5.98 billion for FY 2007 |
|$5.95 billion for FY 2006 ||$5.70 billion for FY 2006 |
White House Budget for Fiscal Year 2008
This year, hewing to the traditional budgetary cycle meant
the White House sent Congress its Fiscal Year 2008 budget request before
Fiscal Year 2007 funding had been resolved for most agencies. As a
result, the Judiciary based its FY 2008 appropriation request of $6.51
billion on an assumed FY 2007 appropriation.
"At the time of our FY 2008 budget submission to the
Office of Management and Budget," said Duff, "our request was based upon
assumed appropriation levels in House and Senate bills—action taken by
the 109th Congress. The fiscal year 2008 request will be updated now
that FY 2007 appropriations have been enacted by the 110th Congress."
The Judiciary's FY 2008 request is an 8.1 percent
increase over FY 2007. The request is based upon known workload in the
courts and standard government-wide increases in pay, benefits and
inflation. Increases are requested to provide for, among other items,
inflationary pay and benefit rate increases, a change in the number of
active and senior Article III judges, uncontrollable workload changes in
Defender Services and unfunded FY 2007 panel attorney payments,
security–related adjustments, and additional staff to address FY 2008
The first of the Judiciary's appropriations hearing are
scheduled for mid-March in the House. Judge Julia S. Gibbons (6th Cir.),
chair of the Judicial Conference Committee on the Budget, and
Administrative Office Director Jim Duff, will testify on behalf of the