The White House gave guidance to federal offices on Wednesday that provides some clarity about what lies ahead with sequestration. The Office of Management and Budget (OMB) now estimates a 9 percent cut to affected domestic agency budgets and a 13 percent cut to defense. Key to CMHNetwork advocacy efforts moving forward is that the White House is clearly giving agencies flexibility in implementing cuts. In the memo from OMB Controller Danny Werfel, he said, 'Agencies' planning efforts must be guided by the principle of protecting the agency's mission to serve the public to the greatest extent practicable. Planning efforts should be done with sufficient detail and clarity to determine the specific actions that will be taken to operate under the lower level of budgetary resources required by sequestration.' This means agencies are encouraged to look at options such as restricting hiring, reducing employee bonuses and travel to meet the new budget goals.
As a reminder, SAMHSA is taking a 168 million dollar hit. The time is now to be vocal about where cuts should and should not be taken.
Read the Hill article here.