In March 2024, Congress passed and the president signed two Fiscal Year (FY) 2024 “minibus” appropriations bills to fund the federal government through September 30, 2024. The first minibus (H.R.4366), including the FY 2024 Agriculture-Rural Development, Commerce-Justice-Science, Interior-Environment, Military Construction-Veterans Affairs, Energy & Water and Transportation-HUD spending bills, was enacted on March 8, 2024. The second minibus (H.R. 2882), including the FY 2024 Defense, Financial Services & General Government, Homeland Security, Labor-HHS-Education, Legislative Branch and State & Foreign Operations spending bills, was enacted on March 23, 2024.

Enactment of these bills followed a series of four Continuing Resolutions (CR) to fund the federal government and avert a government shutdown since the beginning of the current federal fiscal year on October 1, 2023. Unlike previous appropriations cycles, this process also included the use of “laddered” stopgap measures, in which federal spending was extended through two separate deadlines.

In total, both minibus packages represent just over $1.6 trillion in discretionary spending across all 12 spending bills. Of this total amount, over $773 billion is in non-defense discretionary spending, which closely mirrors the comparable FY 2023 level, and nearly $825 billion is in defense discretionary spending, an increase of 3.4 percent.

In June 2023, Congress passed the bipartisan Fiscal Responsibility Act (FRA) debt limit agreement which set discretionary defense and non-defense spending limits for FY 2024 and 2025 enforced through sequestration. Although the $1.6 trillion FY 2024 budget is slightly higher than the limits agreed upon in the FRA, these appropriations are in line with the revised bicameral, bipartisan topline spending agreement announced in January 2024. In April 2024, the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) issued its Final Sequestration Report to the President and Congress for Fiscal Year 2024. In the report, OMB found that these enacted appropriations are within the discretionary spending limits for 2024 and sequestration of FY 2024, therefore, is not required.

The FY 2024 appropriations packages include several key investments of importance to counties detailed in this report. These include, but are not limited to, full funding for the Payments in Lieu of Taxes (PILT) program, sustained funding for the Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) and rural broadband programs and critical policy riders that will make it easier for counties to provide critical mental health services to their residents. These programs and others funded through these bills will enable counties to continue providing critical services throughout our communities in 2024.

In addition to regular programmatic funding and extensions, FY 2024 appropriations included approximately over $14 billion in earmarks (rebranded as community project funding and congressionally directed spending). This represents nearly 8,000 projects and will provide direct federal investments to hundreds of county programs and critical infrastructure projects aimed to better serve communities.

This analysis showcases funding highlights for key programs impacting counties, which includes those listed below:

County Priorities Included in FY 2024 Appropriations

Key Policy Riders & Extenders

  • Foreign Agriculture Land Acquisitions: H.R. 4366 adds the U.S. Department of Agriculture to the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States (CFIUS) for issues involving “agricultural land, biotechnology and industry.” This designation requires USDA to notify CFIUS of any agricultural land transactions reported under the Agricultural Foreign Investment Disclosure Act (AFIDA) that “may pose a risk to national security.”
  • Reauthorizes the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP): H.R. 2882 reauthorizes the NFIP until September 30, 2024. This represents the 30th short term extension of the NFIP since September of 2017. NACo continues to advocate for long-term reauthorization and reforms to the program to ensure continuity and make critical changes to improve its administration for our residents.
  • Key Win - Permanent reforms to the Institutions for Mental Disease (IMD) to support individuals with substance use disorder (SUD): H.R. 2882 makes the option to waive IMD exclusion for SUD treatment and services permanent. This option was first provided in 2018 SUPPORT Act, which granted state Medicaid programs the option to receive federal matching payments for SUD treatment provided in certain IMDs for up to 30 days over a 12-month period through temporary Medicaid waivers. Reforms to the IMD exclusion policy is a primary focus for NACo’s Commission on Mental Health and Wellbeing, which has prioritized expanding the treatment capacity of county-operated hospitals and behavioral health facilities while also promoting equitable access to treatment options for low-income individuals.
  • DSH Payment Cut Delays: H.R. 2882 makes further delay an $8 billion-per year cut to Medicaid Disproportionate Share Hospital payments to January 1, 2025. These payments are critical to county-owned hospitals, who leverage these supplemental payments to offset revenue losses for facilities that treat disproportionately large numbers of Medicaid beneficiaries.
  • Permanent Coverage of Medication Assisted Treatment (MAT) under Medicaid: H.R.2882 makes coverage of Medication Assisted Treatment under Medicaid a permanent offering for state plans. Counties are front line providers of Medicaid services, and Medicaid accounts for nearly a quarter of all publicly funded expenditures on substance use disorders.
  • Mandated state Medicaid suspension upon arrest versus termination: H.R. 2882 would require states to suspend Medicaid benefits upon incarceration. The Medicaid Inmate Exclusion policy, revokes federal health benefits for adults and juveniles that are being housed in correctional institutions - making no distinction between individuals who are being detained in jails prior to conviction, versus individuals who have been adjudicated and sentenced to time in a jail or prison. While suspension over termination does not reverse this policy, it allows justice involved individuals to have their benefits reinstated, rather than having to reenroll upon release.
  • Extends the Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) program through September 30, 2024: TANF is a mandatory block grant that provides states with flexible funding for programs that reduce poverty, promote employment and encourage family preservation and is county administered in 9 states: California, Colorado, Minnesota, New Jersey, New York, North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio and Virginia. Congress last reauthorized TANF in 2005 and has renewed the program through a series of short-term extensions since its expiration in 2010.
  • Extends Title IV-B Child Welfare Services through December 31, 2024: A combination of discretionary and mandatory funding, Title IV-B grants to states provide flexible funding to enhance the well-being of children and families, prevent child abuse and neglect, and provide support for children in and out-of-home care.
  • Ensures direct federal funding for local health departments: H.R. 2882 ensures federal funding reaches local health departments beyond those directly funded, urging CDC to mandate state funding when programmatically appropriate, a significant win for county health systems who own and operate approximately two thirds of local health departments.
  • Heavy Truck Weight Exemptions: H.R. 4366 creates new heavy truck weight exemptions in Mississippi for agricultural haulers and log trucks up to 88,000 lbs.; the law also creates a general exemption in West Virginia, though counties are not responsible for the state’s roads and bridges.
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Agriculture–FDA

FY 2024 Funding
$26.3 billion
Change from FY 2023
$728 million
% Change
2.9%

U.S. Department of Agriculture

FY 2024 Funding
$22.3 billion
Change from FY 2023
-$383 million
% Change
-1.7%

Program 

FY 2024 Funding  

Change from FY 2023   

% Change 

 

Farm to School Grants 

$5.0 million 

-$9.0 million 

-64.3% 

This program brings locally or regionally produced foods into schools, including sourcing local agriculture for school meal programs, providing hands-on learning activities and consolidating food-related education into standards-based classroom curriculum. Counties support the initiatives that promote access to healthy food in schools while supporting local agriculture. 

Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants and Children (WIC) 

$7.03 billion 

$1.03 billion 

17.2% 

WIC supports early childhood development, a key county priority, through nutrition assistance and service referrals. Though administered at the state level, WIC operates through 1,900 local agencies, including county health departments, at thousands of clinic sites. 

Water and Waste Disposal Program 

$1.51 billion 

-$560.0 million 

-27.1% 

The Water and Waste Disposal Program helps counties make critical investments in our nation's water infrastructure. Critical infrastructure, such as water and wastewater, remain a priority for many rural communities. The cost of building, maintaining, and upgrading local water systems is a challenge for many small towns and rural counties. Beyond the public health interests, clean and reliable water is a necessity to spur economic growth. Studies have concluded that water and sewer projects can save or create jobs in rural communities by attracting and retaining businesses.  

Rural e-Connectivity (ReConnect) Program 

$90.0 million 

-$258.0 million 

-74.1% 

The Rural e-Connectivity (ReConnect) Loan and Grant Program furnishes loans and grants to provide funds for the costs of construction, improvement, or acquisition of facilities and equipment needed to provide broadband service in eligible rural areas. NACo supports federal funding for broadband connectivity infrastructure projects that build out to unserved and underserved areas.    

Distance Learning, Telemedicine and Broadband Program 

$40.0 million 

-$20.0 million 

-33.3% 

The purpose of this program is to encourage and improve telemedicine services and distance learning services in rural areas using telecommunications, computer networks, and related advanced technologies by students, teachers, medical professionals, and rural residents. 

NACo supports federal funding for broadband connectivity infrastructure projects that build out to unserved and underserved areas.  

Community Connect Grant Program 

$20.0 million 

-$15.0 million 

-42.8% 

The Community Connect provides financial assistance to eligible applicants that will provide broadband service in rural, economically-challenged communities where service does not exist. 

NACo supports federal funding for broadband connectivity infrastructure projects that build out to unserved and underserved areas.    

Rural Community Facilities Program  

$2.80 billion 

$0 

0.0% 

This program provides affordable funding to develop essential community facilities in rural areas. An essential community facility is defined as a facility that provides an essential service to the local community for the orderly development of the community in a primarily rural area, and does not include private, commercial or business undertakings. Counties support extending eligibility for the Community Facilities Direct Loan & Grant Program to rural governments to provide financial assistance to county operated facilities.  

Rural Housing Loan and Rental Assistance Programs 

$28.13 billion 

-$5.26 billion 

-15.7% 

Rural Housing Services’ rural housing loan and rental assistance programs give families and individuals the opportunity to buy, build, rent or repair affordable homes located in rural America. NACo supports the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) housing programs and opposes any effort to move these programs to the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development. 

Rural Business Programs 

$66.62 million 

-$19.90 million 

-23.0% 

Administered by USDA's Rural Business-Cooperative Service, rural business programs assists rural communities with creating and expanding entrepreneurship and job creation opportunities, as well as develop and access new markets and products, through strategic investments and technical assistance. NACo calls on Congress to provide needed support to USDA so that it may explore innovative approaches for building community capacity and introduce additional economic enhancement opportunities to rural businesses. 

Rural Cooperative Development Grants 

$24.60 million 

-3.70 million 

-13.1% 

The Rural Cooperative Development Grant program improves the economic condition of rural areas by helping individuals and businesses start, expand or improve rural cooperatives and other mutually-owned businesses through Cooperative Development Centers. NACo supports this flexibility and urges Congress to adequately fund Rural Housing, Rural Business  

Cooperative and Rural Utility Services during the annual appropriations process. 

Rural Energy for America Program (REAP) 

$50.0 million 

$30.0 million 

150.0% 

The program provides guaranteed loan financing and grant funding to agricultural producers and rural small businesses for renewable energy systems or to make energy efficiency improvements. Agricultural producers may also apply for new energy efficient equipment and new system loans for agricultural production and processing. Biomass fuels (ethanol, bio-diesel) are paramount not only to the reduction of pollution in counties throughout the nation, but also serve as revenue generators for many farmers that are struggling with low prices for their crops and increased costs of production. Their use and development should be encouraged and enhanced by Congress. 

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Commerce – Justice – Science

FY 2024 Funding
$69.87 billion
Change from FY 2023
-$13.46 billion
% Change
-16.2%

U.S. Department of Commerce

FY 2024 Funding
$10.83 billion
Change from FY 2023
-$229.31 million
% Change
-2.1%

Program 

FY 2024 Funding 

Change from FY 2023 

% Change 

 

Economic Development Administration 

$468.0 million 

-$30.0 million 

-6.0% 

The EDA makes investments in economically distressed communities to create jobs for U.S. workers, promote American innovation and accelerate long-term sustainable economic growth. 

U.S. Census Bureau 

$1.38 billion 

-$102.0 million 

 -6.9% 

Counties support accurate and fair census data, which impacts the distribution of funding across numerous federal programs. NACo supports full funding for the American Community Survey, which provides county leaders with critical data to demonstrate emerging and local trends. Counties also support the Census Bureau’s Population Estimates program and the Local Update of Census Addresses (LUCA) Program. 

National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration 

$6.32 billion 

$117.72 million 

1.9% 

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) provides critical resources such as weather forecasts, climate data and marine resource management tools to aid counties in disaster preparedness efforts, economic planning and environmental stewardship at the local level. 

U.S. Department of Justice

FY 2024 Funding
$37.52 billion
Change from FY 2023
-$1.02 billion
% Change
-3.1%

Program 

FY 2024 Funding  

Change from FY 2023  

% Change 

 

Byrne Memorial Justice Assistance Grants (JAG) 

$345.50 million 

-$67.0 million 

-16.3% 

Byrne-JAG provides resources to counties across the country to utilize emerging and evidence-based approaches to address the public safety challenges facing their jurisdictions 

Community Oriented Policing Services (COPS) Program 

$664.52 million 

$1.64 million 

0.2% 

The COPS program supports local law enforcement agencies to ensure they have the tools, personnel and resources necessary to protect and serve their communities every day. 

State Criminal Alien Assistance Program (SCAAP) 

$234.0 million 

$0 

0.0% 

SCAAP reimburse states and local governments – including counties – for the cost of incarcerating undocumented immigrants who have been convicted of certain crimes. 

 

Second Chance Act Grants 

$117.0 million 

-$8.0 million 

-6.4% 

Second Chance Act grants provide counties with the resources needed to help individuals successfully reintegrate back into the community following their release from jail 

Juvenile Justice Delinquency Prevention Act (JJDPA) 

$375.0 million 

-$25.0 million 

-6.3% 

JJDPA is the principal federal program through which the federal government sets standards for the care and custody of juveniles and provides direct funding to counties to facilitate compliance with these standards. 

Justice and Mental Health Collaboration Program (JMHCP) 

$40.0 million 

-$5.0 million 

-11.1% 

JMHCP provides state and local governments with grants for a broad range of activities, including jail diversion programs, mental health courts, creating or expanding community-based treatment programs and providing in-jail treatment and transitional services 

Drug Courts - DOJ 

 $89.0 million 

-$6.0 million 

-6.3% 

The Drug Courts program grants to states, state courts, local courts and local governments for the development and establishment of drug courts. 

Veterans' Treatment Courts 

$32.0 million 

-$3.0 million 

-8.6% 

The Veterans’ Treatment Courts program provides grants and technical assistance for state, local and tribal governments interested in starting or expanding veteran treatment court programs.  

Prescription Drug Monitoring Program (PDMPs) 

$35.0 million 

$0 

0.0% 

PDMP provides funding for electronic databases that track controlled substance prescriptions. PDMPs help providers identify patients at risk of opioid misuse, abuse and/or overdose due to overlapping prescriptions, high dosages, or co-prescribing of opioids with benzodiazepines. 

Comprehensive Opioid Abuse Program (COAP) 

$189.0 million 

-$1.0 million 

-0.5% 

COAP provides financial and technical assistance to states, units of local government and Indian tribal governments to plan, develop and implement comprehensive efforts to identify, respond to, treat and support those impacted by the substance abuse epidemic 

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Defense

FY 2024 Funding
$824.30 billion
Change from FY 2023
$27.30 billion
% Change
3.4%

U.S. Department of Defense

FY 2024 Funding
$824.30 billion*
Change from FY 2023
$27.30 billion
% Change
3.4%

*Does not include Overseas Contingency Operations (OCO) funding

Program 

FY 2024 Funding 

Change from FY 2023 

% Change 

 

Military Personnel 

$176.24 billion 

$3.50 million 

2.0% 

500 counties serve as home to at least one military installation, and county leaders are committed to ensuring that active-duty service members and their families have the supports and resources they need to thrive. Military Personnel funding includes military pay, suicide prevention and sexual assault response programs, the basic allowance for housing, basic needs allowance and other provisions impacting qualify of life for active, reserve, and National Guard military personnel. 

Readiness and Environmental Protection Integration 

$179.79 million 

$4.79 million 

2.7% 

The Readiness and Environmental Protection Integration (REPI) Program supports cost-sharing agreements between the Military Services and state and local governments to preserve military organizations by avoiding land use conflicts near military installations, addressing environmental restrictions that limit military activities and increasing resilience to climate change. 

Defense Community Infrastructure Program 

 $100 million 

$0 

 0.0% 

The Defense Community Infrastructure Program (DCIP) awards funds to state and local governments to address deficiencies in community infrastructure supportive of a military installation. 

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Energy & Water

FY 2024 Funding
$58.19 billion
Change from FY 2023
$11.10 billion
% Change
23.6%

U.S. Department of Energy

FY 2024 Funding
$50.25 billion
Change from FY 2023
$4.0 billion
% Change
8.3%

Program 

FY 2024 Funding  

Change from FY 2023   

% Change 

 

Weatherization Assistance Program 

$326.0 million 

$0 

0% 

Counties support the Weatherization Assistance Program, which helps low-income households make weatherization and energy-efficiency improvements to their homes to reduce energy costs. 

Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy Funding 

$3.46 billion 

$0 

0% 

The Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy Office provides technical and financial assistance to counties to support renewable energy projects.

U.S. Army Corps of Engineers – Civil Works

FY 2024 Funding
$8.68 billion
Change from FY 2023
$370.50 million
% Change
4.4%

Program 

FY 2024 Funding  

Change from FY 2023  

% Change 

Project Construction 

$1.84 billion 

$36.21 million 

1.8% 

Counties support federal investment in water infrastructure projects at the local level.  

Operation & Maintenance 

$5.55 billion 

$474.29 million 

8.9% 

Counties support federal investment in water infrastructure projects at the local level. 

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Financial Services & General Government

FY 2024 Funding
$36.04 billion
Change from FY 2023
-$13.50 billion
% Change
-27.2%

U.S. Department of the Treasury

FY 2024 Funding
$14.17 billion
Change from FY 2023
-$22.0 million
% Change
-0.1%

U.S. Election Assistance Commission

FY 2024 Funding
$27.72 million
Change from FY 2023
-$75.28 million
% Change
-73.1%

Program 

FY 2024 Funding  

Change from FY 2023  

% Change 

 

HAVA Election Security Grants 

$55.0 million 

-$20.0 million 

-27.0% 

Election security grants are authorized by the Help America Vote Act of 2002 (HAVA) to provide funding to states to meet their most pressing election infrastructure security priorities and to improve the administration of federal elections. Counties support consistent federal investments in election administration and federal funding should be administered in consultation with counties with a specified portion of a state’s federal election funds should be guaranteed to local governments.

Water rescue

Homeland Security

FY 2024 Funding
$61.84 billion
Change from FY 2023
$1.14 billion
% Change
1.9%

U.S. Department of Homeland Security

FY 2024 Funding
$61.84 billion
Change from FY 2023
$1.14 billion
% Change
1.9%

Program 

FY 2024 Funding  

Change from FY 2023  

% Change 

 

U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services 

$271.40 million 

$3.40 million 

1.4% 

USCIS administers the nation’s naturalization and immigration system including work verification for employers and processing applications for permanent residence. Funding may be used for USCIS operations and support including the E-Verify Program, application processing, the reduction of backlogs within asylum, field, and service center offices, and support of the refugee program. 

Shelter and Services Program (formerly the Emergency Food and Shelter Program – Humanitarian Aid) 

$650.0 million 

$150.0 million 

-18.8% 

The U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) and Federal Emergency Management (FEMA) Shelter and Services Program (SSP), formerly known as the Emergency Food and Shelter-Humanitarian Aid (EFSP-H) program, provides funding to county governments and non-profits who are receiving influxes of migrants. Counties are the traditional front-line providers of social, health and supportive services, and this funding helps relieve that financial burden.  

FEMA Disaster Relief Fund (DRF) 

$20.36 billion 

$461.0 million 

2.3% 

The DRF allows FEMA to fund authorized federal disaster support activities as well as eligible state, local, tribal and territorial actions such as providing emergency protection, rebuilding, and debris removal. 

State Homeland Security Grant Program (SHSGP) 

$468.0 million 

-$52.0 million 

-10.0% 

This program assists state, local and tribal efforts to prevent acts of terrorism and prepare to respond to threats and hazards that pose security risks for localities. 

Urban Area Security Initiative (UASI) 

$553.50 million 

-$61.50 million 

-10.0% 

UASI Programs assists high-threat, high-density urban areas in efforts to build and sustain the capabilities necessary to prevent, protect against, mitigate, respond to and recover from acts of terrorism 

Emergency Management Performance Grants (EMPG) 

$319.50 million