Big government gets made into some kind of comic book villain. It’s waste personified and the regulation-loving swamp that Donald Trump wants to drain, they say. This, unsurprisingly, makes budget cuts (a sometimes necessary, but often unpopular part of running a government) a guaranteed applause getter with some crowds. And if there’s one thing President Donald Trump loves, it’s a big round of applause.
Trump also says he love jobs, but these suggested cuts will directly and indirectly result in job losses and an impediment to the work of many agencies in their effort to spur growth. So many lives, thrown into chaos in the name of cost-cutting. Is it justified? Time will tell and opinions will forever differ, but one thing is for sure: these agencies have been far from do-nothing.
Here’s a look at the 19 departments (and the size of their budgets) that could be de-funded as a part of the Trump budget plan and what they are able to do when they are allowed to keep the lights on. Please keep in mind that there are several other programs that are facing deep cuts as a result of President Trump’s budget proposal including the Meals on Wheels program and counter-terrorism funding for the city of New York.
African Development Foundation ($26 million)
The USADF means jobs and safer food for poor communities in Africa with the help of development grants (from $50,000 to $250,000). According to their site, the people that receive assistance range from “ethnic and religious minorities, pastoralists, youth and women, and those living with disabilities.”
One effort that the USADF is involved in is a partnership with GE to help bring electricity to regions in Africa that lack what so many Americans take for granted every day. They do this by partnering with female innovators, and they’ve handed out $5 million over the last four years.
Appalachian Regional Commission ($119 million)
The cuts to the ARC are a political head scratcher because Appalachia holds a lot of vocal Trump supporters who bought into his message and, in parts of the region, a whole lot of people are struggling to deal with poor economic conditions and the bloom of a drug epidemic.
Present ARC efforts include business development investment and workforce training (in a region where this is a particularly sensitive topic due to the shape of the coal industry), health and education programs, and infrastructure projects. As an example, the ARC recently paid out a $243,000 grant to help restore an aging and unhealthy water system in Oak Hill, Kentucky. The question remains, who helps the next Oak Hill in the region if the ARC is shuttered?