On April 26, 2023, the U.S. House of Representatives passed H.R. 2811, the Limit, Save, Grow Act of 2023 by a 217-215 vote. The bill is a one-time suspension of the debt ceiling through either March 31, 2024 or through a $1.5 trillion increase from the current ceiling, whichever comes first. The debt ceiling is a mandated constraint on the amount of money the U.S. Treasury may borrow to fund federal operations. The U.S. government has never defaulted on its debt and such an occurrence would have profound implications to the economy. The bill will now head to the U.S. Senate for consideration.
The current effort by the U.S. House of representatives to suspend the debt ceiling, has numerous funding, tax, and policy provisions of concern to ACS. We would like to highlight some of them below.
If implemented in its current form, the bill would impact the following areas of importance to ACS:
- Reduce discretionary spending to fiscal year (FY) 22 level in FY24, then grow 1% annually for a decade:
- FY24 appropriations would likely result in a reduction of $130 billion over FY23 funding
- An estimated 22% cut to non-defense discretionary funding impacting federal investment in research and development, education and workforce training
- Undermining assurances authorized in the CHIPS and Science Act to increase investment in critical science programs
- Repeal Green Tax Credits and would reduce or eliminate production tax credits for wind, biomass, and geothermal energy
- Cut billions in grants to curb climate pollution and make buildings more energy efficient
The limits on non-defense discretionary spending would have a severe, adverse impact on students, chemistry professionals, and the chemistry enterprise through limiting investment in basic research and development, reducing opportunities to grow and advance the STEM pipeline and workforce, and decreasing investment in scientific advancement and economic development. The provisions removing or reducing tax credits and grants to adopt renewable energy and improve energy efficiency will set back progress in the fight against climate change.
As Congress and the Biden Administration negotiate to increase the debt ceiling, ACS will ask for your help to highlight the importance of continuing to invest in basic research and combatting climate change to your Senators in the coming weeks.
If you have any questions, please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.