- Not enactedThe President has not signed this bill
- The senate has not voted
Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs
- senate Committees
- The house Passed February 13th, 2019Roll Call Vote 418 Yea / 0 Nay
Committee on Oversight and ReformIntroducedFebruary 6th, 2019
- house Committees
What is House Bill H.R. 995?
Cost of House Bill H.R. 995
In-Depth: Rep. Gary Palmer (R-AL) introduced this bill to promote transparency about settlements paid out by the federal government.
A federal fund run out of the Treasury Dept., known as the Judgment Fund, distributes billions annually — including over $4.3 billion in FY 2016, the most recent year for which data is available — to pay financial judgments and awards against the U.S. government on a range of issues. However, while Treasury publishes a yearly report to Congress listing hundreds of payments made through the fund, the report doesn’t include detailed information about the precise reason for each payment.
Additionally, while the Judgment Fund’s payments are publicly searchable on the Treasury website, it isn’t the only source of funds to pay settlements, as agencies may only ask for payment from the Judgment Fund if funds aren’t available from their own appropriations. As a result, any judgments agencies pay for using their appropriations aren’t included in the Judgment Fund’s records.
Republicans have attacked the Judgment Fund as an “unchecked slush fund,” especially after the Obama administration suggested it could be used to make payments promised to insurers under Obamacare after Republicans moved to stop the money from coming out of the Dept. of Health and Human Services (DHS) budget.
This bill has no cosponsors in the current Congress. Last Congress, this bill passed the House by voice vote without any cosponsors.
Summary by Lorelei Yang(Photo Credit: iStockphoto.com / alfexe)