President Trump Releases Preliminary 2018 Budget Proposal

Today, U.S. President Donald Trump released his Fiscal Year (FY) 2018 budget blueprint plan, entitled America First: A Budget Blueprint to Make America Great Again. The $1.15 trillion proposal for discretionary spending would amount to an overall cut of 1.2 percent when compared to current spending levels on an annualized basis.

While the budget blueprint or “skinny budget” document that was released is not the full federal budget, its goal is to provide the U.S. Congress with an overview of the priorities of President Trump and his administration. The full budget will be released later this spring, likely in May, and will include additional details.

Key funding levels and proposals included for the U.S Departments of Homeland Security and Justice include the following:

U.S. Department of Homeland Security

The proposed budget spending level for the Department of Homeland Security is $44.1 billion, an increase of 6.8 percent from current annualized levels. The $2.8 billion proposed increase includes $2.6 billion to plan, design, and construct a wall along the southern U.S. border. The budget blueprint also proposes to eliminate or reduce state and local grant funding by $667 million for programs administered by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA). The one program identified for elimination is FEMA’s Pre-Disaster Mitigation Grant Program. The budget also proposes establishing a 25 percent non-federal cost match for FEMA preparedness grant awards that currently require no cost match.

U.S. Department of Justice

The budget blueprint recommends a funding level for the Department of Justice at $27.7 billion, a 3.8 percent cut. The budget blueprint proposes to eliminate approximately $700 million in programs within the Department of Justice. This includes eliminating $210 million for the State Criminal Alien Assistance Program. At this point, no other programs have been identified. The budget blueprint document does say it will preserve programs aimed at protecting the safety of state and local law enforcement, including Preventing Violence Against Law Enforcement Officer Resilience and Survivability and the Bulletproof Vest Partnership Program.

While the budget blueprint does not clearly identify what state and local law enforcement assistance programs will be cut through the Department of Justice or the Department of Homeland Security, the IACP has outlined several federal funding assistance programs for state, local, and tribal law enforcement that are a priority for the IACP and law enforcement. Further information on these programs and their importance can be found in the IACP’s Policy Priorities for the 115th Congress that was released in December 2016.

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