13-R078

2013 -- S 0435

Enacted 02/27/13

 

S E N A T E R E S O L U T I O N

RESPECTFULLY URGING THE UNITED STATES CONGRESS TO WORK TOGETHER TO AVOID THE HARMFUL EFFECTS OF THE SEQUESTER, HALT THE IMMEDIATE CUTS FACING RHODE ISLANDERS, AND DEVELOP A BALANCED AND RESPONSIBLE PLAN TO MANAGE THE NATION'S LONG-TERM DEBT

     

     

     Introduced By: Senators Paiva Weed, Algiere, Ruggerio, Walaska, and DiPalma

     Date Introduced: February 27, 2013

 

 

     WHEREAS, As mandated by the Budget Control Act of 2011, and because Congress

failed to pass a bill reducing the federal deficit by $1.2 trillion dollars, that amount will be

automatically sequestered through across-the-board federal budget cuts from mandatory and

discretionary spending in the years 2013 through 2021, unless Congress takes alternate action;

and

     WHEREAS, In FY 2013 alone, sequestration has been reported to result in an estimated

$85 billion in automatic spending cuts across the nation; and

     WHEREAS, According to a recent report released by the White House, Rhode Island

stands to lose an estimated $39.34 million in federal funds in the year 2013 alone; and

     WHEREAS, That report shows that most of these cuts will be felt within the stateís

critical defense industry, along with significant cuts to Rhode Islandís teachers and schools; aid to

low-income students to help finance college; funds for Health Start and Early Head Start services;

programs to protect the environment and promote clean air and water; funds for public health

programs; funds for meal assistance programs for the elderly; funds for job search and referral

programs for the unemployed; and funds for crime prevention and law enforcement programs,

among other reductions; and

     WHEREAS, That report also shows that roughly 5,000 civilian U.S. Department of

Defense employees in our state will lose an anticipated gross pay cut of about $31.5 million due

to salary reductions; and

     WHEREAS, In addition, an expected $800,000 reduction in defense operation funding is

anticipated for Rhode Island; and

     WHEREAS, These defense-related reductions, alone, will significantly disrupt the lives

of those impacted, and will hurt the overall spending and economy of Aquidneck Island and the

rest of our state; and

     WHEREAS, The continuing lack of certainty regarding federal funding leaves Rhode

Island with the near-impossible challenge of meeting the needs of those who will be directly and

immediately harmed by sequestration, while balancing our state budget without knowing how

much federal funding the state can confidently expect; now, therefore be it

     RESOLVED, That this Senate of the State of Rhode Island and Providence Plantations

hereby recognizes the need for the United States government to reduce the national deficit and

manage its long-term debt, but believes this should be done in a balanced and responsible manner

that does not jeopardize the state's vulnerable working families and the nationís still fragile

economic recovery; and be it further

     RESOLVED, That this Senate hereby respectfully urges Congress to work together to

avoid the harmful effects of the sequester, halt the immediate cuts facing Rhode Islanders, and

develop a balanced and responsible plan to manage the nationís long-term debt; and be it further

     RESOLVED That the Secretary of State be and hereby is authorized and directed to

transmit duly certified copies of this resolution to the clerk of the United States House of

Representatives, the clerk of the United States Senate, and to members of the Rhode Island

Congressional Delegation.

     

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LC01889

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