Border Security, Farm Payments & More to be Slashed by GOP Tax Bill

Last week the Joint Committee on Taxation confirmed that the GOP tax bill will add $1 trillion to the federal deficit, even after accounting for economic growth. We know that will force an automatic $25 billion cut to Medicare next year and a $16.4 billion cut for Ohio over ten years, according to the Joint Economic Committee.

But what other programs will be slashed to pay for tax cuts to corporations that send jobs overseas? Here are just a few:

  • Border Security: U.S. Customs and Border Protection’s operations and support will be cut by $1.3 billion. That makes U.S. borders less secure overall and takes critical resources away from Customs and Border Patrol officers working to keep fentanyl from entering Ohio communities.
  • Support for Ohio farmers: More than $18 billion would be cut from programs that help Ohio farmers do everything from stabilize farm prices to protect Lake Erie.
  • Benefits for Public Safety Officers: $10 million would be cut from the Public Safety Officers’ Benefits Program, which provides disability benefits to Ohio officers injured in the line of duty as well as survivor and education benefits to family members killed in the line of duty.
  • Transportation Funding: More than $850 million would be cut from federal programs to build and maintain Ohio’s roads, bridges, and airports.
  • Payments to the Military Retirement Fund: The Military Retirement Fund, which supports retirement benefits for Ohio members of the military who have retired from active duty, as well as disability and survivor benefits, would be cut by $7.5 billion.
  • Appalachian Regional Commission: $4 million would be cut from the Appalachian Regional Commission (ARC), which supports Ohio and twelve other states across Appalachia to stimulate local economies, provide job training, expand broadband access in rural areas, and support local infrastructure needs.

 Wait, why are there programs going to get cut?

Pay-As-You-Go (PAYGO) is a little-know law that requires Congress to calculate the costs and savings that any piece of legislation will have over a ten-year period. Under PAYGO, if by the end of 2017, the cost of all legislation passed this year would increase the deficit compared to previous years, it triggers automatic spending cuts across the budget, including Medicare and other critical programs.

That means money will automatically be taken from Medicare and other programs like support for Ohio farmers and funding that ensure Customs and Border Protection can keep out borders secure in order to pay for the $1 trillion hole the Republican tax plan blows in the deficit.  

A full list of federal programs threatened by the GOP tax plan can be found here.

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