Okay, folks, this is crazy. I was reading an article regarding Congress passing a non-budget budget last night:
Last night, as part of a procedural vote on the emergency war supplemental bill, House Democrats attached a document that “deemed as passed” a non-existent $1.12 trillion budget. The execution of the “deeming” document allows Democrats to start spending money for Fiscal Year 2011 without the pesky constraints of a budget.
Well, I researched the bill and the supplement designating the non-budget budget:
H.R.4899 – Supplemental Appropriations Act, 2010
BILL TITLE: Providing for consideration of the Senate amendments to the bill (H.R. 4899) making emergency supplemental appropriations for disaster relief and summer jobs for the fiscal year ending September 30, 2010
Here is the interesting part:
EMERGENCY DROUGHT RELIEF
Sec. 401. For an additional amount for ‘Water and Related Resources’, $10,000,000, for drought emergency assistance:Provided, That financial assistance may be provided under the Reclamation States Emergency Drought Relief Act of 1991 (43 U.S.C. 2201 et seq.) and any other applicable Federal law (including regulations) for the optimization and conservation of project water supplies to assist drought-plagued areas of the West.
Sec. 402. Funds made available in the Energy and Water Development and Related Agencies Appropriations Act, 2010 (Public Law 111-85), under the account ‘Weapons Activities’ shall be available for the purchase of not to exceed one aircraft.
There is an account labeled “Weapons Activities” from which funds are available for drought “relief.”
So I looked up this “Weapons Activities” account, which is under the National Nuclear Security Administration at http://nnsa.energy.gov/. Here is the purpose of this account:
For Department of Energy expenses, including the purchase, construction, and acquisition of plant and capital equipment and other incidental expenses necessary for atomic energy defense weapons activities in carrying out the purposes of the Department of Energy Organization Act
And just what is the purpose of the Department of Energy Organization Act?
The Congress therefore declares that the establishment of a Department of Energy is in the public interest and will promote the general welfare by assuring coordinated and effective administration of Federal energy policy and programs.
Can anyone explain to me why drought relief funds come from a weapons account, which is directly under the National Nuclear Security Administration, whose purpose is to purchase, construct, and acquire plant and capital equipment necessary for atomic energy defense weapons activities in order to “promote the general welfare by assuring coordinated and effective administration of Federal energy policy and programs?” Why would “drought” and “weapons activities” even be mentioned in the same sentence?
(C) 2010 Barbara H. Peterson