Capito Opening Statement on FY16 Budget Request for the CBO and GAO

WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Senator Shelley Moore Capito (R-W.Va.), Chairman of the Senate Legislative Branch Appropriations Subcommittee, today offered the following opening statement during a subcommittee hearing to review the FY2016 budget request for the Congressional Budget Office and Government Accountability Office:
MARCH 10, 2015
Good afternoon.  The subcommittee will come to order.  I would like to welcome everyone to the first of our fiscal year 2016 budget hearings for the various agencies under the jurisdiction of the Legislative Branch appropriations subcommittee.  We begin today with the Director of the Congressional Budget Office, Dr. Douglas Elmendorf; and the head of the Government Accountability Office, Mr. Gene Dodaro.  I appreciate the willingness of the witnesses to appear before the subcommittee today and look forward to their testimony.
I would like to start by thanking Dr. Elmendorf for his six years of service as the Director of the Congressional Budget Office (CBO), as this will be his last hearing before the subcommittee in this capacity.  Dr. Elmendorf has been a stellar public servant and in his tenure has ensured that CBO provided this committee with the objective, non-partisan information necessary to do its job.  We appreciate the manner in which you have approached what has not always been an easy task.  And we wish you well in all your future endeavors.  
As many of you may already know, on February 27, 2015, the Speaker of the House, John Boehner, and the President Pro Tempore of the Senate, Orrin Hatch, jointly appointed Dr. Keith Hall to be the next Director of the Congressional Budget Office, after consideration of the recommendation made to the Leadership by the Chairmen of the House and Senate Budget Committees.  Dr. Hall’s term will begin on April 1, 2015, and expire on January 3, 2019, in accordance with the guidelines set forth in the Congressional Budget and Impoundment Control Act of 1974.      
The total Congressional Budget Office request for FY 2016 is $47.27 million, a $1.57 million, or 3.4%, increase above the FY 2015 enacted level.  This funding request supports the current full-time equivalent (FTE) level of 235 plus an additional three FTE’s necessary for health related work and developing a specific structure within the existing macroeconomic division, in order to comply with the new House rule requirement.
The total Government Accountability Office (GAO) request for FY 2016 is $553.1 million, a $31.1 million, or 6%, increase above the FY 2015 enacted level.  This funding request supports an increase in FTE’s from 3,015 to 3,055, which would continue progress toward GAO’s multi-year plan to achieve an optimal level of 3,250 FTE’s.  
I look forward to exploring these needs with you and the other members of the subcommittee today and over the next several months as we move through the fiscal year 2016 process.
And now, I’d like to turn to my Ranking Member, Senator Schatz, for any opening remarks he may like to make.