Basic Fiscal Law. Keith M. Dunn Counsel to the Navy Surgeon General Navy Bureau of Medicine and Surgery email@example.com 202.762.3299 www.twitter.com/TheFiscalLawyer. The Power of the Purse.
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Keith M. Dunn
Counsel to the Navy Surgeon General
Navy Bureau of Medicine and Surgery
“The established rule is that the expenditure of public funds is proper only when established by Congress, not that public funds may be expended unless prohibited by Congress.”
United States v. MacCollom, 426 US 317 (1976)
Remember the Bank of Mom -- Don’t mix those envelopes!
“…only for the objects for which the appropriation is made…”
31 USC § 1301(a)
The balance of an appropriation limited for obligation to a definite period is available ONLY for:
- payment of expenses properly incurred during the period of availability or
- to complete contracts properly made within that period of availability.
* The appropriation is not available for expenditure for a period beyond the period otherwise authorized by law.
Current FY funds may be obligated to satisfy a need which arose in a prior FY where:
- need was not previously met for legitimate reasons
- need continues into the subsequent FY AND
- incurring obligation was discretionary with the agency
Funds appropriated for a specific fiscal year are not legally available for the needs of a future fiscal year.
*NO EXPENDITURES 2 YEARS
AND NO LONGER NEEDED
31 USC 1555
(you cannot hoard money, either – sec. 8004)
“ . . . [A]n appropriation available for obligation for a definite period shall be apportioned to prevent obligation or expenditure at a rate that would indicate a necessity for a deficiency or supplemental appropriation for the period.”
31 U.S.C. 1512(a)
. . . An appropriation shall be apportioned not later than the later of the following:
(1) 30 days before the beginning of the fiscal year for which the appropriation is available; or
(2) 30 days after the date of enactment of the law by which the appropriation is made available.”
31 U.S.C. 1513(a)
DoD memo dtd 10 Feb 2006
OMB memo dtd 15 Feb 2007
Executive Oder, Protecting American Taxpayers From Government Spending on Wasteful Earmarks, 29 Jan 08
Amounts appropriated for a purpose represent a limitation Congress has fixed for that purpose and all expenditures for that purpose must come from that appropriation and may not exceed that amount absent express statutory authority.
. . . an official or agent of the Government receiving money for the Government from any source shall deposit the money in the Treasury as soon as practicable without deduction for any charge or claim.”
31 U.S.C. §3302(b)Augmentation
10 USC 2601 – general gift statute
10 USC 7220 – gifts for welfare of enlisted members
31 U.S.C. § 1341 (prohibiting obligations or expenditures in excess of appropriations and contracting in advance of an appropriation)
31 U.S.C. § 1342 (prohibiting government employees from accepting voluntary services)
31 U.S.C. §§ 1511-1517 (requiring apportionment/ administrative subdivision of funds and prohibiting obligations or expenditures in excess of apportionment or administrative subdivision of funds)
31 U.S.C. § 1344 (prohibiting the unofficial use of passenger carriers)