Heritage urges Congress to cut 10 programs in $1T spending bill

The Heritage Foundation on Friday urged Congress to cut 10 programs as part of the giant $1 trillion omnibus spending bill set to be unveiled next week.

Appropriations Committee staff are continuing to hammer out a deal on the 12-part spending package that is needed to keep the government open after Jan. 15. The bill is expected to adhere to the $1.012 trillion spending level in the December House-Senate budget deal. That level was $45 billion more than the previous cap for fiscal 2014.

The omnibus will likely be unveiled next week, prompting a rushed vote before the shutdown deadline. 

Heritage acknowledges that conservatives lost the fight on the cap, but says progress can still be made by cutting off funding for what it sees as 10 highly wasteful programs. The cuts would save $10.2 billion.

The biggest savings would come from the Community Development Block Grant program, which would be cut by $3.1 billion under the Heritage proposal. The House in 2013 proposed a cut of about half that.

Also on the chopping block would be Jobs Corps, which Heritage says has a poor record of helping youths find employment, Department of Education grants and funding for the United Nations Population Fund.

In an area of agreement with the Obama administration, Heritage is proposing ending requirements that the U.S. buy food for food aid domestically and ship it abroad. President Obama has proposed a similar idea, which has been blocked by rural lawmakers serving on the Agriculture committees.