Require a biennial budget resolution, while maintaining annual appropriations bills.

The budget resolution has increasingly become a partisan document, used by congressional leaders to highlight their policy preferences, and in some cases as a political maneuver for Senate passage of non-budget related bills. And when the budget process is inordinately delayed and politicized, it slows down the important work of congressional appropriations. The Committee recommends Congress institute a biennial budget resolution, with annual appropriations bills. By setting 302(a) discretionary spending levels at the start of each Congress, appropriations will be more efficient and able to plan ahead, avoiding unnecessary delays. 

A biennial budget would also provide Congress additional time to conduct oversight on federal agencies and departments. When Appropriators and authorizers have more certainty, they can turn their attention to those entities that they fund and oversee, respectively. This also serves to buttress Congress’s constitutional authority and ensures that appropriated funds are being used responsibly and authorized programs are implemented consistently with Congressional intent.[305]

In addition, the Committee recommends enabling a second-session revision of the budget resolution for scoring purposes. This requirement would give authority in the second year of a biennium to adjust the budget resolution’s spending and revenue levels, committee allocations, and other amounts to reflect an updated baseline used for scoring purposes. 

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