Senator Rand Paul (R-KY) introduced Wednesday a bill that would prevent government shutdowns from happening.
Instead of government shutting down operations over stalled funding in the future. the Government Shutdown Prevention Act (S. 147) would keep government open but institute a one-percent cut to then-current funding levels for any agency, program, and activity that Congress failed to fund by the start of the fiscal year (October 1). Funding would be reduced by another one percent every 90 days thereafter that an agreement is still not enacted.
“No matter where one stands on the debate over government spending, we should all be able to agree that Congress needs to handle Americans’ money thoughtfully and hit its deadlines. The Government Shutdown Prevention Act would take a major step forward toward bringing basic fiscal responsibility to Capitol Hill,” said Sen. Paul.
Currently, Congress does not face any consequences for failing to pass appropriations bills on time, which has helped lead to it pursuing procrastination over prudence and risking shutdowns due to impasses.
Along with ensuring government honors its obligations and maintains its operations, Paul’s proposal would give agencies the certainty of knowing that, in a worst-case scenario, they will always be able to operate with a full year of funding at no less than 96 percent of their then-current levels.
Senators Mike Lee (R-UT) and Joni Ernst (R-IA) joined Paul in introducing the bill.
Paul discusses the proposed legislation in a video below. The full text of the bill can be read here.