In This Week's Edition of Snapshot…
- Senate Vote on National Emergency Declaration Resolution
- President Trump's 2020 Budget Proposal Released
- Funding Opportunity: Rural Communities Opioid Response Program (RCORP)
- The Push for a Non-Itemizer Deduction
- Lawmakers Seek to Apply “Open Government” Laws to Nonprofits
Today the Senate will vote on the House’s disapproval resolution blocking President Trump’s national emergency declaration. The resolution, passed by the House two weeks ago, is expected to pass the Senate with a simple majority of 51 votes, given that several Republican senators, including Senators Lisa Murkowski (R-AK), Thom Tillis (R-NC), Susan Collins (R-ME), and Rand Paul (R-KY) have expressed their support already. The resolution would prevent the president from redirecting billions from other appropriations to his border wall. President Trump indicated that he would use his veto power if the resolution is brought to his desk.
Vice President Pence discussed a potential offer with Republican senators on Tuesday that would spare the president his first veto. This came in the form of a provision introduced by Sen. Mike Lee (R-UT) that would curb the president's national emergency powers if senators defeat the resolution. But on Wednesday, President Trump told Sen. Lee that he would not be able to endorse his effort. Referring to the Republican effort to amend the National Emergencies Act of 1976, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) said in a statement, "The House will not take up this legislation to give President Trump a pass."
This week, the White House released its $4.7 trillion budget proposal for fiscal year 2020. President Trump’s blueprint would sharply reduce spending on safety net and discretionary government programs, while still raising the deficit. The president’s plan would expand funding for defense and border protection by increasing funding for the Defense and Commerce departments. The proposed budget also implies there will be significant cuts to the Education and State departments, as well as international aid—The Wall Street Journal reported. In his budget proposal, President Trump asks for $8.6 billion for the border wall, with $2.7 trillion in spending cuts, a higher reduction than any other administration proposal in history.
Spending bills generally require bipartisan support, and with Democrats now in control of the House, the latest budget blueprint is likely to have limited influence.
House Democrats are still drafting a budget, which is their first chance as a new majority to formally outline their broader agenda. But the resolution is not likely to get a vote, as Democrats are trying to avoid an intraparty battle. “We’re still proceeding as if we’re going to do one, but we’re also considering other options because we don’t know if we can get 218 votes for anything,” House Budget Chairman John Yarmuth (D-KY.) said in an interview Monday.
The Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) has implemented a new Rural Communities Opioid Response Program (RCORP). Under the RCORP Grant Program, HRSA will make approximately 75 awards of up to $1 million each to networks and/or consortia to enhance treatment of substance use disorder, including opioid use disorder, and service delivery in high-risk rural communities. All domestic public and private entities, nonprofit and for-profit, are eligible to apply and all services must be provided in HRSA-designated rural areas. To see if your community is in an eligible HRSA rural area, visit the Rural Health Grants Eligibility Analyzer. There is a webinar for applicants on Wednesday, March 27, 2019 from 11:30-1:00 pm ET, and a recording will be made available for those who cannot attend. For webinar dial-in and playback information, please reference page ii in the NOFO. (Deadline: May 6, 2019)
Exclusive from our colleagues at the National Council of Nonprofits.
The fight continues in the Arizona Senate to establish a non-itemizer charitable deduction to help redress an expected decline in giving due to the 2017 federal tax law. According to a new study, “Arizona nonprofits could lose approximately $273 million in charitable giving” because of the federal tax law. The bill passed the House last month by a wide margin, but prospects in the Senate may be tougher. More than 250 nonprofits signed onto a letter calling for passage of the giving incentive. Learn more in this op-ed that explains the need and impact of the legislation.
Lawmakers in at least two states are attempting to treat charitable nonprofits as government organizations subject to public records or open meetings laws. A measure in Arkansas would change the definition of "public record" under the state Freedom of Information Act to include the public records of private entities, including nonprofits, that perform a governmental function or support a governmental agency or public activity. In Oregon, legislation would require that both for-profits and nonprofits that have gross annual revenues of more than $100,000, receive public funds or public benefits from a tax credit or tax deduction, or perform a government function under a contract comply with open meetings and public records laws, post their budgets publicly, and submit to and cooperate with audits.