Summary of 2014 Discretionary Spending Levels

Jan. 28, 2014 - Download PDF Version

By Jasmine Tucker

Earlier this month, congressional lawmakers enacted an omnibus spending bill that would fund the federal government for fiscal year 2014, which began on Oct. 1, 2013 and ends on Sept. 30, 2014. The agreement adhered to spending limits set out in the Bipartisan Budget Act of 2013.

Total Discretionary Spending

Base discretionary spending amounts to $1.012 trillion, up from the 2013 post-sequester enacted spending level of $986 billion. In addition, the omnibus provides $98.5 billion in war funding (also known as Overseas Contingency Operations), disaster relief, and other programs, bringing the total discretionary spending level to $1.1 trillion for 2014. 

Military Spending

The omnibus spending package provides $520.5 billion in base military spending for fiscal 2014, more than $2 billion – or .4 percent – over the fiscal year 2013 level of $518 billion.

 In addition to the base level spending, the bill provides $85 billion for ongoing military operations in Afghanistan, also known as Overseas Contingency Operations, for a total of $605 billion in military funding fiscal 2014. 

Non-Military Spending

The omnibus provides $491.7 billion to non-military discretionary programs in fiscal year 2014. This is up about 5 percent from the fiscal year 2013 post-sequester level of $468 billion.

Included in non-military discretionary spending is an increase to Head Start in fiscal year 2014, which has a total program budget of $8.6 billion, about $1 billion more than the fiscal year 2013 level.


The Bipartisan Budget Act, reached in December 2013, provided the spending limits for the omnibus spending bill that Congress assembled this month. In putting together the Act, lawmakers chose to reduce the impact of sequestration by about $45 billion in 2014 and $20 billion in 2015. That translates into an additional $22.5 billion each for military and non-military discretionary spending for fiscal year 2014 than if sequestration were in full effect.