Abilene Reporter-News: Abilene Rep. Arrington among congressmen calling for federal budget reform
U.S. Rep. Jodey Arrington is calling on congress to finish its budget on time despite a recent failures to meet deadlines.
Arrington, a Lubbock Republican who represents Abilene as part of District 19, said lawmakers needs to step up or shouldn’t be allowed to take its summer recess.
“As families across America prepare to travel for the Thanksgiving holiday this week, congress has once again prematurely closed shop, this time, with seven of the 12 spending bills still outstanding,” Arrington said in a news release Wednesday. “It has been over 20 years since congress passed all spending bills before the end of the new fiscal year. The failure of congress to do its basic job of funding the government and instead rely on stopgap spending measures has created needless waste, disruption and inefficiencies.”
Arrington’s call for budget and spending bills was joined by Rep. Derek Kilmer, D-Washington.
The two proposed an amendment, called the No-budget, No-recess amendment, calling for congress to work until the budget is done.
“Ever since my first job at West Side Video in Port Angeles, Washington, I’ve never had a job where I expected my boss to approve a leave request if my work wasn’t finished,” Kilmer said in the release. “Congress ought to function the same way. It’s time for comprehensive reform to congress’s budgeting process that incentivizes progress over partisanship and bipartisanship over bickering.”
Under the plan, the release said, congress would not be allowed to adjourn without successfully completing all of its annual appropriations work before the July and August district work periods.
Specifically, the amendment would require live quorum calls for house of representatives members’ failure to pass a budget resolution or annual appropriations bills, the release said. These quorum calls would require member attendance by triggering automatic votes in the house, incentivizing congress to complete its budget work in a timely manner and effectively barring members from leaving Washington.
The pair will present the amendment before the Joint Select Committee on Budget and Appropriations Process Reform upon congress’s return from the Thanksgiving break, the release said.