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OMB Issues FY2015 Budget Guidance

Legislative Update
June 10, 2013

On May 29, the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) released a memo providing guidance for departments and agencies to develop their Fiscal Year (FY) 2015 budget submissions. Warning of the “challenging” budget environment, the memo directs agencies to identify savings of 10 percent below the net FY2015 discretionary total provide in the President’s FY2014 budget request, as opposed to the 5 percent reduction requested in last year’s memo. The current memo says that reductions will “provide the President with the options needed to make hard choices necessary to adhere to the Budget Control Act’s discretionary funding levels, invest in priority areas, and focus on programs that work.”

To help meet the targeted reductions, the memo asks for a list of recommendations to reduce fragmentation, overlap, and duplication, and increase effectiveness. However, the memo directs agencies not to include across-the-board cuts required by sequestration. OMB will issue a separate memo encouraging the increased use of evidence and evaluation in budget submissions.

At any one time, federal agencies are managing a current year budget (FY2013), awaiting Congressional appropriations action on the next fiscal year’s budget (FY2014), and developing the details of the two fiscal years out budget (FY2015), the latter of which will likely be released by the President in the February 2014 timeframe.