Policy Update: Debt Ceiling Bill

Yesterday, House GOP leadership released a legislative proposal to raise the national debt ceiling by $1.5 trillion in exchange for a sweeping array of cuts in discretionary spending, totaling $4.5 trillion. The package includes significant impacts to the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF), and Medicaid.


  • Extends the age range for the Able Bodied Adults Without Dependents (ABAWD) work requirement from 50 to 56
  • Prohibits states from carrying forward unused discretionary ABAWD exemptions beginning in FY 2025



  • Eliminates the use of excess Maintenance of Effort and changes the baseline year for calculating the caseload reduction credit from 2005 to 2022
  • Prohibits states from counting certain working TANF recipients towards the Work Participation Rate
  • Requires state reporting of new outcome-oriented performance measures



  • Establishes Medicaid work requirements for certain individuals age 19 to 55 and removes federal match for states that continue to serve non-compliant individuals


As proposed, these policies would likely have severe consequences on the well-being of children and families and significantly impact the operations of human services agencies. At this time, the White House and Senate have signaled the proposal is a non-starter for negotiations. A House vote on the proposed bill is expected in early May and, absent Congressional action, there is a prospect of a default happening this summer or early fall. 

APHSA will work with our members and partners to prepare for all possible outcomes and advance solutions that reflect our shared commitment to ensuring all people have access to the building blocks of economic mobility and well-being.

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