Discretionary spending is the part of the us federal budget that congress appropriates each year for fiscal year 2020 president donald trump requested 1426 trillion the constitution gave congress the authority to raise and spend money for the federal government. Federal spending where does the money go federal budget 101 facebook twitter in fiscal year 2015 the federal budget is 38 trillion these trillions of dollars make up about 21 percent of the us economy as measured by gross domestic product or gdpits also about 12000 for every woman man and child in the united states. The budget control act and trends in discretionary spending congressional research service 2 categories of federal spending federal spending can be divided into three basic budget categories o discretionary spending 117 trillion in fy2014 outlays o mandatory spending 211 trillion in fy2014 outlays and. The united states federal budget consists of mandatory expenditures which includes medicare and social security discretionary spending for defense cabinet departments eg justice department and agencies eg securities exchange commission and interest payments on debtthis is currently the over half of us government spending the remainder coming from state and local governments. Discretionary budget authority is established annually by congress as opposed to mandatory spending that is required by laws that span multiple years such as social security or medicare the federal government spent approximately 600 billion during 2016 on the cabinet departments and agencies excluding the department of defense up 15
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