public policy apgopo vocab

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Appropriation

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23 Terms
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Appropriation

a law that authorizes the expenditure of funds for a given purpose.

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Authorization Bill

bill that gives a government agency the legal authority to fund and operate its programs and sets maximum funding levels and includes policy guidelines

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Balanced Budget

a budget in which revenues and spending are equal in a given year.

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Balanced Budget Amendment

An amendment to the U.S. Constitution that would require the federal government to enact a budget where expenditures do not exceed revenues in any fiscal year.

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Congressional Budget Office (CBO)

non-partisan branch of Congress that provides analysis and materials related to the federal budget process, and objective analyses needed for economic and budgetary decisions related to programs covered by the federal budget.

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Continuing Resolution (CR)

legislation that extends funding for federal agencies - typically at the same rate that they had been previously funded - into a new fiscal year until new appropriations bills become law.

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Debt Ceiling

the limit on the amount of debt the federal government allows itself to hold. Congress has the authority to raise the debt ceiling.

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Deficit

the amount by which government expenditures are greater than tax collections in a given year.

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Discretionary Spending

portion of the budget that the president requests and Congress appropriates every year. It represents less than one-third of the total federal budget

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Earmarks

provisions added to legislation to designate money for a particular project, company, or organization, usually in the congressional district of the lawmaker who sponsored it.

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Entitlement Programs

a certain kind of federal program in which all people who are eligible for the program's benefits, according to eligibility rules written into law, must by law receive benefits if they apply for them.

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Estate Taxes

taxes paid on an inheritance.

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Excise Taxes

taxes placed on the sale of (usually) luxury items but also on specific consumer items like cigarettes, liquor, and gasoline.

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Federal Debt

the total of all past federal budget deficits, minus what the federal government has repaid.

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Gift Taxes

taxes imposed on any transfer of property that occurs without payment.

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Marginal Tax Rate

the rate at which your last (highest) dollar of income is taxed. So, for example, if you are single and you make $22,000 per year, then your first $8,500 of income is taxed at a rate of 10 percent, and the rest of your income is taxed at 15 percent. In that case, 15 percent is your marginal tax rate.

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Medicare

a federal program that provides health care coverage for senior citizens and the disabled. It is funded through payroll taxes.

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Office of Management and Budget (OMB)

part of the executive branch of government that provides guidelines to federal agencies instructing them how to prepare their strategic plans and budgets. It also serves as the president's accounting office.

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Omnibus

a budget that encompasses all 12 appropriations bills into one bill, often used when Congress and the President can't agree on passage of 12 individual spending bills.

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Payroll Taxes

taxes paid jointly by employers and employees to fund the Social Security and Medicare programs.

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Social Insurance

made up of programs that help workers and their families replace part of income lost due to unemployment, disability, retirement, or death, as well as ensure access to adequate health care.

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Social Security

officially called the Old Age, Survivors, and Disability Insurance program, is a federal program that is meant to ensure that elderly and disabled people do not live in poverty. It is funded through payroll taxes.

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Subsidy

direct assistance from the federal government to individuals or businesses for certain activities, which helps defray the costs of those activities.

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