Bill Summaries: S414 (2021)

  • Summary date: Mar 31 2021 - View summary

    Enacts new GS Chapter 143F, Compact for a Balanced Budget. States the purpose and objectives of the Compact for a Balanced Budget (Compact) and sets forth 7 defined terms. Sets out the following as the Balanced Budget Amendment (to be presented at a convention, detailed below). Effective when Congress refers the Balanced Budget Amendment to the states for ratification by three-fourths of the State's Legislatures, and adopts and ratifies the Balanced Budget Amendment. Sets out the Amendment as follows. Prohibits US government total outlays from exceeding total receipts at any point in time unless the excess of outlays over receipts is financed exclusively by debt issued according to the Compact's provisions. Prohibits outstanding debt from exceeding authorized debt, which is initially set at an amount equal to 105% of the outstanding debt on the effective date of this article; prohibits increasing the authorized debt unless an increase is approved by the legislatures of the several states. Allows Congress to increase authorized debt to an amount exceeding the initial amount only if it first publicly refers to the legislatures of the several states an unconditional, single subject measure proposing the amount of the increase, and the measure is approved by a simple majority of the legislatures of the several states; prohibits any inducement requiring an expenditure or tax levy from being demanded, offered, or accepted as a quid pro quo for such approval. Deems the measure disapproved if it is not approved in 60 calendar days. Requires the President, when outstanding debt exceeds 98% of the debt limit, to enforce the limit by designating specific expenditures for impoundment, which becomes effective in 30 days unless Congress designates an alternative impoundment; makes the President's failure to designate or enforce the required impoundment an impeachable misdemeanor. Voids any issuance or incurrence of any debt in excess of the debt limit. Requires approval by a two-thirds roll call vote of the whole number of each House of Congress in order to pass any bill that includes a new or increased general revenue tax--excludes a bill that provides for a new end user sales tax that replaces every existing income tax levied by the US government, or for the reduction or elimination of an exemption, deduction, or credit allowed under an existing general revenue tax. Specifies that the above is immediately operative upon ratification, self-enforcing, and Congress may enact conforming legislation to facilitate enforcement.

    Provides that this Compact and each of its Articles are contractually binding on each Member State when: (1) at least one other state has become a Member State by enacting substantively identical legislation adopting and agreeing to be bound by this Compact and (2) notice of the state's Member State status is or has been received by the compact Administrator, if any, or by the executive officer of each other Member State. Sets out additional provisions governing obligations of Member States. Establishes guidelines for determining Member State status. Allows withdrawal from the Compact by enacting appropriate legislation and giving notice, when fewer than three-fourths of the states are Member States. Requires unanimous consent of all Member States for a Member State to withdraw once at least three-fourths of the states are Member States.

    Establishes the Compact Commission (Commission) and provides for Commission membership, voting, funding, and meetings. Lists the Commission's seven powers and duties, including appointing and overseeing a Compact Administrator, coordinating the performance of obligations under the Compact, and overseeing the defense and enforcement of the Compact in appropriate legal venues. Gives the Compact Administrator the following powers and duties: (1) timely notify the states of the date, time and location of the Convention; (2) organize and direct the logistical operations of the Convention; (3) maintain an accurate list of all Member States, their appointed delegates, and contact information; and (4) formulate, transmit, and maintain all official notices, records, and communications relating to this Compact. Sets out five instances in which the Compact Administrator must send out notices to the Member States. Sets out additional provisions governing the Compact Administrator's duties. 

    Effective once at least three-fourths of the states are Member States; applies to Congress to call a convention for proposing amendments limited to the subject matter of proposing for ratification the Balanced Budget Amendment. Also petitions Congress to refer the Balanced Budget Amendment to the States for ratification by three-fourths of their respective Legislatures. Gives each Member State one Convention delegate. Sets out additional provisions governing the delegates and setting out their authority. Sets out rules governing the Convention. Requires the Convention to be entirely focused upon and exclusively limited to introducing, debating, voting upon, and rejecting or proposing for ratification the Balanced Budget Amendment.

    Sets out provisions for the construction of the Compact, enforcement of the Compact, Convention date and location, defending against legal challenges and appropriate venue. Provides for termination of he Compact. 

  • Summary date: Mar 30 2021 - View summary

    To be summarized.