President’s FY14 Budget Request Would Add to Deficit but Bolsters Cybersecurity Spending
April 15, 2013 1 Comment
In a recent webinar, analysts at Bloomberg Government (BGOV) began what will inevitably be the first of many dissections of President Obama’s FY2014 budget request. The request asks for $3.8 trillion in spending for the next fiscal year. The deficit would be $744 billion next year, with deficits continuing for the next decade.
When compared to the enacted spending amounts from FY2012, many agencies will be seeing a cut in base discretionary spending under Obama’s budget, including USDA, HUD, and Labor. It would initially seem as though the Department of Justice would be facing a whopping 40% decrease in base discretionary spending, but the researchers at BGOV aptly point out the discrepancy is largely due to a change in accounting regarding asset forfeiture and the Crime Victims Fund. Agencies such as Commerce, Energy, VA, and NSF will see increases in their spending requests.
Cybersecurity is one of the few areas enjoying bipartisan support and increased funding in FY2014. The budget outlines $4.7 billion for the Pentagon for cyberspace operations, significantly more than the $3.9 billion it intends to spend on cybersecurity by the end of FY2013. This funding request represents the President’s and the Pentagon’s desire to build out the government’s offensive cyber capabilities. The budget request also asks for $300 million more when compared to the FY2012 number for DHS and a 22% bump for the VA, so the two agencies can further enhance their cybersecurity efforts.
While the federal government is curbing spending, it is no longer treating IT, specifically cybersecurity, as expendable. We can expect another debt ceiling debate this summer and hopefully legislation ending the federal government’s financial gridlock before the August recess.