Federal 2016 Funding Adopted

by Rachel Zinn
December 21, 2015

A Fiscal Year (FY) 2016 “omnibus” spending bill was adopted into law on Friday, funding government operations through September 30, 2016. The legislation contains critical funding increases for key workforce and education programs, including initiatives supporting state data systems and labor market information. 

Funding for the Workforce Data Quality Initiative increased to $6 million. That's a $2 million bump above the current year, but well below the President’s requested $37 million. The requested amount would have assisted states with implementing new data requirements under the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA).

The Statewide Longitudinal Data System grants awarded by the U.S. Department of Education remain funded at the current level of $35 million.

A new $7.5 million initiative to improve reciprocity and portability of occupational licenses is included in appropriations for the U.S. Department of Labor. The funding will support state activities to reduce unneccessary barriers to re-employment created by state licensing requirements, especially for dislocated workers and veterans.

Statistical agencies that provide essential information about workers, students, businesses, and the economy got the following increases:

  • Bureau of Labor Statistics, +$17 million for a total funding level of $609 million
  • National Center for Education Statistics, +$9 million for a total funding level of $112 million
  • Census Bureau, +$282 million for a total funding level of $1.4 billion

The omnibus increased spending across government as compared to the current year, though funding is still below pre-sequester levels.