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House appropriators to start fiscal 2021 markups April 21

Committee aims to pass all 12 bills on the floor by July.

A quote from the Constitution is affixed to the dais in the House Appropriations Committee room.
A quote from the Constitution is affixed to the dais in the House Appropriations Committee room. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

The House Appropriations Committee is officially two months away from kicking off this year’s process.

House appropriators plan to start subcommittee markups for fiscal 2021 spending bills on April 21. A week later on April 28, they plan to follow up with the first full committee markup and adoption of subcommittee allocations showing how the panel would split up nearly $1.4 trillion in discretionary spending among the various federal agencies.

[Candidates for Appropriations gavel laying groundwork]

Under the tentative schedule obtained by CQ Roll Call, the committee would wrap up all the markups by May 19, clearing the way for House Democratic leaders to try to achieve their goal of passing all the bills on the floor before the start of July.

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Some of the markup dates could change in the weeks ahead, but under the current plan the markups will occur on the following days:

  • April 21: Agriculture, Commerce-Justice-Science and Legislative Branch subcommittees.
  • April 22: State-Foreign Operations subcommittee.
  • April 27: Homeland Security subcommittee.
  • April 28: Commerce-Justice-Science and Legislative Branch full committees and adoption of subcommittee allocations for all 12 bills.
  • April 29: Agriculture and State-Foreign Operations full committees and Defense and Labor-HHS-Education subcommittees.
  • April 30: Energy-Water, Financial Services and Military Construction-VA subcommittees.
  • May 12: Interior-Environment and Transportation-HUD subcommittees.
  • May 13: Defense, Homeland Security and Labor-HHS-Education full committee.
  • May 14: Energy-Water, Financial Services and Military Construction-VA full committees.
  • May 19: Interior-Environment and Transportation-HUD full committees.

The Senate Appropriations Committee typically starts its process a little later. That panel’s chairman, Richard C. Shelby, R-Ala., has said he’d like to complete markups before the August recess.

House and Senate appropriators have their work cut out for them this year, with only about $5 billion more to spread around the dozen spending bills than they had for measures covering the current fiscal year, ending Sept. 30. That skinny increase, allowed under the budget deal enacted last summer, is split evenly between defense and nondefense programs, for a less than 0.4 percent boost on average.

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