14 Mar 2021

Budget Reconciliation/COVID-19 Update


Last week, Congress finalized the first budget reconciliation bill for Fiscal Year (FY) 2021 and President Biden signed it into law. The first budget reconciliation bill, The American Rescue Plan, is the Democrats’ COVID-19 economic relief package, which includes provisions such as state and local funding, additional stimulus checks, and expanded unemployment insurance. The process to consider this first reconciliation bill started last month after the passage of FY 2021 budget resolutions by the House and Senate. Subsequently, the House passed its version of the FY 2021 budget reconciliation bill on February 26, 2021. The Senate approved an amended version of the bill on March 6, 2021, by a party line vote of 50-49. The package passed final House approval on March 10, 2021, with a vote of 220-211, allowing President Biden to sign the bill into law on March 11, 2021. The bill did not receive any Republican support in the House or Senate, and only one House Democrat, Rep. Jared Golden (D-ME), voted against the final version. The first reconciliation bill does not include any programmatic changes to the Job Corps program.

The timing of the second reconciliation bill for FY 2022 is uncertain but will likely be later this year, at the earliest over the summer. Technically, consideration of the second reconciliation bill could go into calendar year 2022, but it would have to be completed before the end of the fiscal year, which is September 30, 2022. The second reconciliation bill is expected to include policy proposals beyond COVID-19 economic relief, including but not limited to climate initiatives and infrastructure. NJCA is working with congressional leaders and their staff to include Job Corps infrastructure improvements and other programmatic improvements in the second reconciliation bill later this year.