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senate Bill S. 1676

States to Feds: You Can't Keep Our Money Due to Sequestration

Argument in favor

This is revenue being wrongly withheld from states by the federal government, and it's money that states rely on to fund on hospitals, schools and roads.

Argument opposed

To assume states won't suffer from a national debt crisis is wishful thinking. This legislation wouldn't be necessary if Congress did its job and balanced the budget.

bill Progress

  • Not enacted
    The President has not signed this bill
  • The house has not voted
  • The senate has not voted
      senate Committees
      Committee on the Budget
    IntroducedNovember 7th, 2013

What is Senate Bill S. 1676?

This bill would exempt certain state payments from automatic budget cuts known as sequestration. In 2011, Congress said if they couldn't reduce the deficit by $4 trillion, about $1 trillion in budget cuts would automatically kick in in 2013. Congress didn't, and the cuts have, and this has meant that states aren't getting payments owed to them. 

The bill deals with payments tied to three separate Acts--the Mineral Leasing Act (MLA), the Gulf of Mexico Energy Security Act (GOMESA), and the RESTORE Act--in addition to the Wildlife and Sport Fish Restoration Program. States are currently on a one-year delay for receiving these funds, which are managed by the U.S. Department of the Interior and the Office of Management and Budget (OMB). None of the accounts are funded with taxpayer dollars. Save for the Restoration Program, this is private sector (coal, oil) money paid to the federal government in order to lease land. This money is held by the federal government, and ultimately re-disbursed to states. (The Restoration Program is different, and involves competitive grants.) The bill, then, would make sure that our national deficit and Congress's lack of ability to solve our debt does not affect the re-disbursement of these funds. 


If enacted, the bill would provide more certainty for states, in regard to financial planning, as they would be assured that the national debt would not interrupt distribution of funds tied to these acts.

Cost of Senate Bill S. 1676

A CBO cost estimate is currently unavailable.


Return Our State Shares Act

Official Title

A bill to exempt certain payments to States from sequestration.

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