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Recess is Over!

The return of Congress means decision time.  October 1st is the beginning of the fiscal year for the Federal Government, meaning that appropriations bills must be enacted to fund government agencies.  This chart shows that three appropriations bills have not yet been completed; Labor, Health and Human Services and Education, Military/Veterans programs, and State Department/Foreign Operations.  It is too soon to predict a Gingrich-style government shutdown, but not too soon to be concerned about the approaching deadline.

Tax Cuts

There has been much back and forth over the Bush-era tax cuts, which are set to expire at the end of this year.  There seems to be a growing consensus to let the tax cuts for those making over $250,000 expire, while retaining the reduction for the remaining taxpayers.  Not only would this be in keeping with the original intent of the tax cuts (there was no way to pay for the tax cuts past 2010 - thus the expiration date) it would also make the tax code fairer for middle-income taxpayers.  Here is relevant background information on this debate, which will undoubtedly be an issue in the November elections.

ADA News

While news and Notes was not published in during the August recess, ADA was busy nonetheless.  ADA National Director Michael J. Wilson spoke at the conventions of the A. Philip Randolph Institute and the Retirees of the International Association of Machinists and Aerospace WorkersIn addition, he'll be on a panel during the Congressional Black Caucus Foundation's annual convention with U.S. Rep. Keith Ellison (D-MN), HUD Secretary Shaun Donovan, Congressional Oversight Panel Director Elizabeth Warren, and the National Low Income Housing Coalition's Sheila Crowley discussing the economy.

Noteworthy

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