Government Matters talks with former Department of Labor CFO Jim Taylor and Former Office of Personnel Management CFO Clarence Crawford about what full appropriations means for the agencies that received it.
With FY19 officially in full swing, two-thirds of federal funds have been appropriated, giving many agencies their first on-time money in quite some time, including the Department of Defense and the Department of Labor. Some of these agencies haven’t been fully appropriated in years, so how will a return to “regular order” impact them. Jim Taylor, managing director at Grant Thornton and former CFO at the Department of Labor, says that continuing resolutions have had a big impact on the workforce. “There are a group of individuals who work in the government who manage these procurements, who manage the financial process, who’ve spent the majority of their career not understanding that you’re supposed to have an appropriation, and you’re supposed to be able to plan for the fiscal year,” Taylor said. “I think that there is no such thing as regular order. This year is little bit of an aberration because of the election. I think we’ll go back to the new norm, which is we will have CRs and disputes over the budget lasting into the new fiscal year on an ongoing basis.” Clarence Crawford, Maryland principal director at WMATA and former CFO at the Office of Personnel Management, says that this is a fleeting opportunity for the government financial community. “It may not be repeated. This is an opportunity to get hiring underway, to get some of the larger procurements underway, to get some of their significant transformations underway, because it may not last,” Crawford told Government Matters.