Des Moines Register
U.S. Rep. Bruce Braley, 1st District, used the occasion of the unveiling of the president’s proposed budget today to announce Braley will be a cosponsor of a bill to block congressional pay unless Congress passes budget bills on time. He joins U.S. Rep. Dave Loebsack, 2nd District, who signed on as co-sponsor Dec. 16.
Here’s a release from Braley’s office about the bill:
Washington, DC – As President Obama unveiled his 2013 federal budget proposal today, Rep. Bruce Braley (IA-01) signed on as a cosponsor to “No Budget, No Pay” legislation that would block pay for members of Congress if they’re unable to make spending and budget decisions on time each year.
The most basic responsibility Congress has is deciding how much money the government takes in and how much it spends. However, Congress has only passed its spending bills on time only four times since 1952. In the last 14 years, annual spending bills have been submitted an average of 14 months late.
“In the real world, there are real consequences if deadlines aren’t met,” Braley said. “There should also be real consequences if Congress can’t meet its deadlines. I can think of few stronger incentives to get politicians to do their job than tying their pay to their job performance. This idea is a powerful way to restore a little common sense to a Congress that has none.”
Every government fiscal year begins on October 1st. Under the “No Budget, No Pay” proposal, if the congressional spending process is not completed by that date each year, congressional pay ceases and isn’t restored until it is completed.
For the current fiscal year, Congress was nearly three months overdue in completing the annual budget and spending process.
The “No Budget, No Pay” legislation is a key component of the “Make Congress Work” reform plan of the No Labels organization, a group of Republicans, Democrats, and independents dedicated to bringing people together and making government function again. In December, Braley joined No Labels to unveil the plan.