A Washington Post analysis of the 459-page budget revealed at least 98 cases in which Congress took back unused IOUs and called it a cut.
In some instances, federal agencies said they really were about to use the money. At U.S. Customs and Border Protection, for instance, a spokesman said the loss of a $10 million IOU would delay the replacement of aging equipment. The Census Bureau lost $50 million it was planning to spend on support personnel and things such as IT infrastructure.
But in other cases, the IOUs seemed unlikely to be cashed in.
The compromise budget, for instance, takes $560 million from the Academic Competitiveness and SMART programs, which gave grants to college undergraduates.
But the programs are set to end after this school year. And
the Education Department has enough cash to cover the remaining grants. “We would not have used this money,” a spokesman said.
At the Treasury Department, Congress gave itself credit for rescinding $423 million from a program that uses forfeited assets to aid criminal investigations.