4 Programs that Both Obama and Trump Want to Eliminate

Monday, May 01, 2017
Presidents Donald Trump and Barack Obama (photo: Jim Watson, AFP/Getty Images)

It sometimes seems that the differences between the priorities of the Republican Party and the Democratic Party are so great that they can’t agree on anything. Not so. Here are four programs that President Barack Obama’s last budget and President Donald Trump’s first budget proposed for complete elimination.


1. State Criminal Alien Assistance Program ($210 Million)

The State Criminal Alien Assistance Program (SCAAP) reimburses local law enforcement agencies, including corrections departments, for housing undocumented immigrants who have been arrested. The Obama and Trump administrations argue that local law enforcement agencies and jails are responsible for dealing with criminals in their jurisdictions regardless of their immigration status. The grant recipients respond that undocumented immigrants wouldn’t be committing crimes in their neighborhoods if the federal government did a better job of keeping them out of the country.


2. Targeted Airshed Grants ($20 Million)

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) provides grants to pollution-endangered areas to develop plans and implement programs to reduce dangerous pollutants. Although Trump may not like the grants, EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt feels differently. On March 13, he approved grants to Cache Valley in Idaho and Utah, which suffers, particularly in winter, from fine particle air pollution caused by wood stoves, road dust and motor vehicles.


3. National Wildlife Refuge Fund ($13.2 Million)

The National Wildlife Refuge Fund compensates counties for revenue lost because federal lands are administered within these counties. Both the Obama and Trump administrations contend that whatever local tax revenues are lost because of the refuges are more than made up for by services provided by the federal government and by the increased value of private property near wildlife refuges. Although the program has existed since 1935, Congress has voted to not fully fund it in every year since 1981.


4. Program for Investment in Micro-entrepreneurs (PRIME) Technical Assistance Grants ($5 Million)

Administered by the Small Business Administration, PRIME provides grants to organizations which, in turn, train and educate low-income entrepreneurs to start or expand their businesses. Here are descriptions of the organizations that received grants in FY2016.

-David Wallechinsky


To Learn More:

Strange Budget Bedfellows: Programs Targeted for Cuts by both Trump and Obama (by Chris Zubak-Skees and Gordon Witkin, Center for Public Integrity)


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