U.S. President Joe Biden’s first federal budget proposes an 8.4% increase in discretionary spending, including considerable increases for health care, housing, education and environmental protection.
The White House Office of Management and Budget released Biden’s spending priorities Friday in a budget request for fiscal year 2022, less than 6 months before government funding is depleted and as Congress mulls its own spending plans.
The president’s budget calls for a roughly 1.5% increase in military spending, amounting to total defense spending of $753 billion, slightly less than the $769 billion proposed for non-defense programs.
The budget request amounts to a 16% increase in spending in domestic non-defense programs over current spending levels.
Biden’s budget also requests a 40.8% funding increase for the Department of Education and a 23.1% boost for the Department of Health and Human Services.
More funding is also proposed for the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to combat opioid addiction.
The administration is requesting $6.5 billion to establish a biomedical research agency to address diseases such as cancer and diabetes and $14 billion more for government agencies to combat climate change.
A 15.1% increase is proposed for Housing and Urban Development to provide housing vouchers for an additional 200,000 families.
The budget proposal also seeks more funding for civil rights enforcement and to address gun violence.
On the immigration front, the administration proposes an $861 million investment in Central America to address conditions forcing people to migrate to the U.S. It also requests an additional $345 million to resolve delays in ongoing naturalization and asylum cases.
The budget also calls for a 21% increase in the budget for the Executive Office of Immigration Review to hire 100 more immigration judges and support staff to cut existing backlogs.
“The request lays out the president’s discretionary funding recommendations across a wide range of policy areas and outlines a strategy for reinvesting in the foundations of our country’s resilience and strength,“ White House spokesperson Jen Psaki told reporters during Friday’s White House briefing.
About one-third of the current federal budget is allocated for discretionary spending for the military, congressionally approved domestic programs, and foreign policy.
The rest of the budget is dedicated to mandatory spending on entitlement programs such as Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid.
Biden’s budget proposal does not include requests for mandatory federal spending or tax revenues, nor does it include spending for his infrastructure plan.
White House spokesperson Psaki said Biden’s full budget will be released “later this spring.”