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At a critical moment in an ongoing discussion of America’s economic future, the Peter G. Peterson Foundation’s 2011 Fiscal Summit brought together leading thinkers and policymakers who presented a range of ideas about how to solve the nation’s long-term fiscal challenges.
Since its establishment in 2008, the Peter G. Peterson Foundation has been dedicated to advancing solutions to our nation’s long-term fiscal challenges. The Foundation is motivated by the belief that America is on an unsustainable path, and that only by changing course can we ensure that our economy remains strong and competitive for future generations.
This summer, the Congress passed and the president signed the Budget Control Act of 2011 (BCA) that put in place a process for reducing the deficit. The BCA imposed caps on future discretionary spending and empowered a bipartisan, bicameral committee (the “Supercommittee”) to identify additional deficit reduction by Thanksgiving. Over the next 10 years, the spending caps are projected to reduce deficits by approximately $900 billion, and the Supercommittee is charged with finding $1.5 trillion of additional savings.
In the summer of 2010, the Peter G. Peterson Foundation established its inaugural Fiscal Internship program in Washington DC, with the goal of supporting the development of young talent in the fiscal policy world. The program pairs college and graduate students interested in the nation’s economic future with public policy organizations working on fiscal issues.
Summer 2011 PGPF Fiscal Internship Program in Washington DC
The Congressional Budget Office (CBO) recently published an update of its long-term outlook for the budget and concluded that the federal budget will continue to face intense pressures from the aging of the population and growth in health care costs.i These pressures will push up spending on Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid. If taxes are not increased or spending is not cut, CBO projects that interest costs will climb and federal debt will grow to levels that will damage our economy. CBO’s views about the long-term outlook have not changed much from last year.