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Sunday, December 23, 2018

Overworked Appropriations Staff

At the R Street Institute, Casey Burgat and Ryan Dukeman have a report titled: "Human Capital and Institutional Decline in Congressional Appropriations Committees."
More specifically, according to the Office of Management and Budget (OMB), the U.S.
federal budget––measured in constant, 2009 dollars to account for inflation––grew
from $2.3 trillion in 2001 to $3.5 trillion in 2016. This roughly 53 percent increase in the
federal budget has far outpaced growth in staff levels of the HAC [House Appropriations Committee]  (no change) and SAC [Senate Appropriations Committee] (17 percent) over the same period. » As a result, workload per committee staffer has increased dramatically across both appropriations committees in the last several years. In the Senate, each SAC staffer in 2016 was, on average, responsible for $32.24 billion in federal funds, compared to $24.74 billion in 2001. In the House, staffers saw their workload increase from $15.28 billion in spending per staffer to $23.21 billion. This represents a 30 percent increase in workload for SAC staffers and a 52 percent increase in workload for HAC staffers over the 16-year period studied.