New Appropriations Bill would Slash Funding for Nation’s Financial Intelligence Unit and Sanctions Office by a Combined $34 Million
WASHINGTON, DC – A proposed spending bill for FY2024 released yesterday by the House Appropriations Committee would cut funding for the nation’s primary financial intelligence unit, the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN), by more than $24 million. The bill would also cut roughly $10 million in funding for Treasury’s Office of Terrorism and Financial Intelligence, which oversees federal sanctions enforcement through the Office of Foreign Assets Control.
Erica Hanichak, FACT government affairs director, said in a statement:
“For years, our nation’s financial crime fighters have been financially outgunned by foreign and domestic criminals, corrupt oligarchs, and sanctions evaders looking to stash the proceeds of their crimes in the U.S. financial system. FinCEN simply has too many important projects on its plate – from finalizing rulemakings to end the use of anonymous shell companies, to drafting long-overdue regulations clamping down on dirty money in U.S. real estate and private investment markets – for lawmakers to be considering cuts at this critical junction. Cutting resources now would not only undermine FinCEN’s capacity to advance these crucial new measures, but also hamper its ability to fulfill its broader mandate as the nation’s front line of defense against financial crime.
“While FinCEN has secured regular spending increases with bipartisan support in recent years, the Bureau remains chronically underfunded relative to both the scope of its mandate and the resources available to those bad actors it is tasked with reining in. Now – when the threats facing the U.S. financial system from within and without are greater than ever – is the time to increase support for this vital bureau, not pull it back. We urge congressional appropriators to rethink any cuts to Treasury’s budget that would impact the broader fight against dirty money in the U.S.”
Notes to the Editor:
- The text of the House Appropriations Committee’s Fiscal Year 2024 bill for the Financial Services and General Government Subcommittee, as introduced yesterday, June 21, can be found here.
- The bill would cut FinCEN’s budget for FY2024 to $166 million, 12.7 percent lower than the $190.2 million figure enacted for FY2023. Treasury’s Office of Terrorism and Financial Intelligence would likewise be cut by $9.2 million, a 4.3 percent drop from last year’s enacted level.
- In 2022, Treasury estimated that illicit funds equaling 2 percent of the U.S. GDP, or roughly $460 billion, moved through the U.S. financial system each year (p. 23). The new House proposed budget for FinCEN constitutes just 0.04 percent of that total, putting our financial crime fighters on the backfoot.