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Monday, August 15, 2011

Budget chaos reigns: 2012, 2013 plans in disarray in wake of debt deal

Federal financial managers are accustomed to dealing with budget challenges. But rarely have they faced the combination of challenges now heading their way:

• With seven weeks to go before the next fiscal year begins, Congress has not passed any of the dozen spending bills that keep the government operating; and most agencies, if not all, will likely enter the fiscal year under a continuing resolution.

• The Office of Management and Budget has not given any guidance to agencies on how to prepare their 2013 budget submissions, which are due to OMB in only a few weeks. That OMB guidance typically goes out to agencies in June, but it has been sidetracked by uncertainty created by the lengthy and inconclusive debt ceiling negotiations.

Many experts forecast another bruising partisan clash over the 2012 budget — as there was this year over the 2011 budget — that may again threaten the shutdown of some agencies.

-Sean Reill, FederalTimes.com

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