President Obama on Tuesday sent Congress a $3.9 trillion budget for 2015 that includes increased spending for employment, education and job-training programs to boost the economy, financed in part by cutting tax breaks for upper-income families and some businesses. Deep within the budget is language giving the Treasury Department the ability to call delinquent consumers on their cell phones using autodialers.
According to the budget proposal, that item alone would cut the federal deficit by an estimated $120 million between 2015 and 2024.
Treasury also performs an array of core government functions such as tax law enforcement, financial management, and debt collection that are vital to the overall financial integrity of the federal government, the budget report says. Treasury will take action to help improve the governments ability to collect delinquent debt across all agencies, enhance program integrity and return greater resources to taxpayers.
The accounts receivable management industry, led by ACA International - the largest association representing collection agencies and creditors - supports the budget language.
The Obama administration previously has recommended allowing calls with autodialers to mobile devices to recoup money owed to the federal government, stating the clear move among consumers to relying solely on mobile devices for telecommunications. The accounts receivable management industry firmly backs modernizing the Telephone Consumer Protection Act for the private and public sectors.
Obama's overall budget was quickly rejected Tuesday by Republicans in Congress, who expect to offer their own proposal. House Speaker John Boehner, R-Ohio, called the budget Obama's "most irresponsible yet."
This budget isnt a serious document; its a campaign brochure, added House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan, R-Wis., said. The president has just three years left in his administration, and yet he seems determined to do nothing about our fiscal challenges.
Obamas plan includes $56 billion in what the White House calls "additional investments," split evenly between defense and domestic priorities and including education, research and development.
Elsewhere in the budget, according to The Wall Street Journal, the budget also includes measures that would cap student loan payments as a percentage of income and "ultimately forgives some of the debt."
And, according to American Banker, a Collections & Credit Risk sister publication, the budget also looks to make up for the costs related to bank failure resolutions with an item called "spending authority from offsetting collections."
The item appears to be referring to what the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. collects in insurance premiums paid by the industry. The authority estimated for 2014 is $20 billion, while $25.7 billion is estimated for 2015. Both figures are more than 200 percent higher than what the Office of Management and Budget reported was actually collected in 2013.
For the larger banking industry, the budget contained few surprises. American Banker outlined four critical takeaways for bankers.