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 Secretary Lew on the Passage of H.R. 83, Consolidated and Further Continuing Appropriations Act, 2015


12/17/2014
   

“Our economy has made remarkable progress over the last six years, but as we saw with the series of debt limit delays and last year’s government shutdown, self-inflicted wounds created in Washington can have an enormous impact on our economic recovery.  This bipartisan legislation will prevent another government shutdown from happening while at the same time providing certainty that most of the government will continue to operate next year. 

 

“Of course, this package is far from perfect, and we oppose certain provisions.  This legislation pares back a component of financial reform aimed at reducing taxpayer exposure to the derivatives market.  It imposes irresponsible funding cuts to the Internal Revenue Service, which marks the fifth year in a row that its budget has been reduced, making it harder for the agency to provide quality service that American taxpayers deserve.  And it fails to provide a viable solution to address the challenges facing multi-employer pension plans and puts a heavy burden on retirees.  In addition, Congress’s failure to approve International Monetary Fund reform puts our leadership position in this critical international institution at risk and undermines the ability of the IMF to play its critical role in promoting global financial stability.  Going forward, we will work to address these shortcomings. 

 

“Nevertheless, this legislation is the result of a bipartisan effort to reach a compromise, and it meets a host of objectives.  For instance, it maintains a robust Consumer Financial Protection Bureau to make sure consumers have a strong watchdog looking out for their interests, and it boosts funding for other agencies that are essential to making financial markets more fair, transparent and resilient for all Americans.  It also includes critical resources to secure our national security priorities, educate our children and strengthen our manufacturing base.  With the passage of this legislation, we can put dangerous budget brinkmanship aside and focus our attention on initiatives that expand opportunity, create jobs and grow our economy.”

 

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