Monday, February 2, 2015

Foreign Affairs Budget Request for 2016 is Released

So the Obama Administration has proposed a Federal government budget of 4 trillion dollars for 2016. Strictly speaking, it's only S3.99 trillion, which is advertising brilliance, according to Roger Sterling.

The FY 2016 budget justification for Department of State, Foreign Operations, and Related Programs accounts for $43.7 billion of the total Federal budget, plus another $7.0 billion for Overseas Contingency Operations (i.e., the tail ends of wars in Iraq, Afghanistan, and Pakistan). Historically, the cost of conducting the Foreign Affairs of the United States has been just a little bit over one percent of the entire Federal budget, and it looks like that proportion will hold steady for next year.

According to a budget Fact Sheet that State sent out today, the request includes $3.4 billion for Worldwide Protective Operations and $4.8 billion for overseas infrastructure. Included in that 4.8 is $2.2 billion for facility security upgrades and new embassy construction in Lebanon, Saudi Arabia, Guatemala, and Paraguay.

Those protection and facility security costs cover the needs of 86,000 overseas U.S. government employees from 30-plus agencies who staff 275 diplomatic missions.

Now, it's up to our elected representatives in Congress to either vote for that budget or to once again "make priorities and choices" to fund less than requested.

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