The more you work with Congress, the more you see how uncontrollable events have an impact on our fate as a program. For instance, during Senate Appropriations discussions, our program was poised to attain a slight increase in funding. However, because of the humanitarian crisis at our Southern border, several programs did not receive the boost they needed—including Community Action. I expect that the ongoing ISIS situation will dominate the conversation come November and December with calls to increase Defense spending.
Big issues like this are constantly competing for the attention and resources of Congress, though Republican and Democratic members alike are now realizing that recent cuts on federal spending have had negative impacts in ways we never anticipated. Whether it is the recent security breach at the White House or the seeming unpreparedness of the National Institutes of Health and the World Health Organization concerning the Ebola virus, members are becoming aware of the damaging implications that off-the-radar cuts are having. I hope Congress keeps these lessons in mind as they deal with the budget, appropriations and potential sequestration cuts next year.