A leaked copy of the House Appropriations Committee schedule was published in Roll Call and included a timeline for House Appropriations action.

The Subcommittee on Appropriations for Labor-Health and Human Services-Education (Labor-HHS) will be taken up on April 29, 2020.

The plan is that the subcommittees will start action on April 21 with the Agriculture appropriations beginning first with a target completion for all subcommittee bills by May 12. The allocation of FY 2021 spending between the 12 bills will be voted on April 28 by the full Appropriations Committee. The plan is for both the Labor-HHS-Education and the Defense Department Appropriations to be voted on in the full committee on May 13. Two fiscal years ago, FY 2019, the Labor-HHS-Education and Defense Appropriations where passed together by the Congress before the election. That guaranteed the passage of the two most controversial bills and more than 65 percent of federal appropriations funding before the election. The rest of the government was funded with a continuing resolution and forced into the longest government shutdown when the President rejected any deal causing a partial closure from December 22, 2018, to January 25, 2019. It is not clear that congressional leaders would attempt a joint Labor-HHS/Defense package, and many feel that a continuing resolution for all 12 appropriations is more likely when the fiscal year starts on October 1, 2020.

In terms of the Senate action, it is less clear, but the Senate does not constitutionally originate appropriations, so the House usually goes first. Last year the Senate never voted on a Labor-HHS bill out of the Subcommittee but later negotiated with the House directly. As usual, Senate appropriators will start its process later than the House, with Chairman Richard Shelby (R-AL) saying he wants to complete markups before August recess. For a summary of the President’s budget regarding key children programs, go here, and for the budget chart, go here.