What Trump’s Budget Could Mean for the Affected Agencies

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President Trump’s plan includes an 18 percent reduction in budget for the National Institutes of Health, which fund thousands of researchers working on cancer and other diseases. CreditGabriella Demczuk for The New York Times

WASHINGTON — President Trump’s first federal budget proposal calls for spending billions of dollars on the military and border security while imposing deep cuts to government departments that deal with the environment, diplomacy, the arts, science and cities.

White House budgets are largely political documents that set out presidential priorities, and most of the cuts that Mr. Trump is asking for are unlikely to happen.

But some of them could.

As Congress weighs Mr. Trump’s requests, industry leaders who are facing a loss of federal funding are starting to sound the alarm about the dire situations they could be facing.

Science

The amount and extent of the cuts in the proposed budget unveiled early Thursday shocked scientists, researchers and program administrators.

The reductions include $5.8 billion, or 18 percent, from the National Institutes of Health, which fund thousands of researchers working on cancer and other diseases. They also include $900 million, or about 15 percent, from the Department of Energy’s Office of Science, which funds the national laboratories, considered among the crown jewels of basic research in the world.

“Do they not think that there are advances to be made, improvements to be made, in the human condition?” said Rush D. Holt, a physicist and chief executive of the American Association for the Advancement of Science.

The Arts

Mr. Trump also proposed eliminating the National Endowment for the Arts and the National Endowment for the Humanities. And he would scrap the Corporation for Public Broadcasting, a critical revenue source for PBS and National Public Radio stations, as well as the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars.

“We are greatly saddened to learn of this proposal for elimination, as N.E.H. has made significant contributions to the public good,” said William D. Adams, the chairman of the humanities endowment.

The New York Times’s coverage of the cuts is here and the reaction is here.

The State Department

Thousands of jobs could be lost at the State Department because of the 31 percent funding cut that the White House has requested.

Many educational and cultural exchange programs designed to improve the image of the United States would be abolished or pared back to pay for an increase in military spending. The Global Climate Change Initiative and a number of envoys and offices created during the Obama administration are slated for elimination.

“U.S. engagement must be more efficient,” Secretary of State Rex W. Tillerson said.

Our coverage is here.

Housing and Urban Development

As a candidate, Mr. Trump promised to put an end to urban blight. But now that he is in office, he does not appear interested in putting federal government resources behind that goal.

Mr. Trump would cut the budget of the Department of Housing and Urban Development by 13 percent. He would also eliminate programs like the Community Development Block Grant, which cities have used to fund programs such as Meals on Wheels as well as homeless shelters and neighborhood revitalization initiatives.

“These are people who are trying to better themselves,” said Karen D. Stokes, the chief executive officer of Strong City Baltimore, a nonprofit that operates an adult learning center that gets about 8 percent of its funding from the block grant.

The story is here.

The Environment

Another agency among the hardest hit by the budget was the Environmental Protection Agency, which would be slashed by 31 percent.

While the E.P.A. may be known for sweeping regulations to control climate change, increase auto fuel efficiency and mandate smokestack controls, the agency’s bread and butter is more prosaic. The staff and scientists at its regional offices and laboratories nationwide regularly respond to emergency calls from city and state officials.

Funds to respond to many of those calls would no longer be available under Mr. Trump’s budget. He has proposed slicing the agency’s $8.1 billion budget to $5.7 billion, and cutting 3,200 jobs from the agency’s staff of 15,000.

The Military

Who is the biggest winner in Mr. Trump’s budget? The Defense Department.

Under his plan, the military would get a $54 billion windfall to fill its shopping cart with everything from Apache helicopters for the Army, antisubmarine planes for the Navy, fighter jets and more training for selected personnel. Some of the new funding would undoubtedly be used to ramp up the fight against the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria.

“The president very clearly wants to send a message to our allies and our potential adversaries that this is a strong-power administration,” said Mick Mulvaney, the director of the Office of Management and Budget.

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gabugo

Author, Pastor, Development and Valuation Surveyor, CEO LandAssets Consult Ltd., Publisher, The Property Gazette.

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