Congressional Budget Justification: Fiscal Year 2016 (NUREG-1100, Volume 31)

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Publication Information

Date Published: January 2015

Office of the Chief Financial Officer
U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission
Washington, DC 20555-0001

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The NRC's FY 2016 Congressional Budget Justification provides the necessary resources for the Nuclear Reactor Safety and Nuclear Materials and Waste Safety Programs to carry out the agency's mission and achieve the stated goals and desired outcomes for the American public. The NRC's proposed FY 2016 budget is $1,032.2 million, including 3,754.1 full-time equivalents (FTE), including those in the Office of the Inspector General (OIG). The budget request represents a decrease of $27.3 million, including a decrease of 141.8 FTE when compared to the FY 2015 President's Budget.

Subsequent to the submittal of the FY 2015 President's Budget, the Consolidated and Further Continuing Appropriations Act, 2015 [Public Law (P.L.) 113-235] was signed into law by the President on December 16, 2014. P.L. 113-235 reduced the amount made available for salaries and expenses by $44.2 million below the FY 2015 President's Budget to account for fee-based unobligated carryover and authorized the Commission to reallocate the agency's unobligated carryover to supplement its FY 2015 appropriations. When compared to P.L. 113-253, the NRC's proposed FY 2016 budget represents an increase of $16.9 million, including a decrease of 55 FTE.1 However, the budget request does not represent an actual increase because the available resources and projected workload are essentially level between FY 2015 and FY 2016. P.L. 113-235 also states that of the FY 2015 amounts appropriated, $10 million shall be for university research and development, and $5 million shall be for the Nuclear Science and Engineering Grant Program.

The OIG's component of the FY 2016 proposed budget is $12.1 million, of which $11.2 million is for auditing and investigation activities for NRC programs and $1.0 million is for the auditing and investigations activities of the Defense Nuclear Facilities Safety Board (DNFSB). These resources will allow the OIG to carry out the Inspector General's mission to independently and objectively conduct audits and investigations to ensure the efficiency and integrity of NRC and DNFSB programs and operations, to promote cost-effective management and to prevent and detect fraud, waste, and abuse.

Under the provisions of the Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act of 1990, as amended, the NRC's FY 2016 budget provides for 90 percent fee recovery, less the amounts appropriated for (1) waste incidental to reprocessing activities under Section 3116 of the Ronald W. Reagan National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2005, (2) generic homeland security activities, and (3) DNFSB activities.

Accordingly, $910 million of the FY 2016 budget will be recovered from fees assessed to NRC licensees. This will result in a net appropriation of $122 million, which is a decrease of $2 million in net appropriations when compared to the FY 2015 President's Budget. In accordance with the requirements defined in Section 51.2 of the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) Circular A-11, Requirements for Program Justification, the NRC is providing the full cost of its programs.

Consistent with the NRC's commitment to OMB's guidelines to accurately budget for NRC salaries and benefits expenses, the NRC's FY 2016 budget reflects a 1.3 percent increase for salaries and benefits for a cost of living increase.

1Resources in the Congressional Budget Justification are usually compared to previous FY Enacted amounts; however, due to the timing of P.L. 113-235, resources in the FY 2016 Congressional Budget Justification are compared to the FY 2015 President's Budget. FY 2015 Enacted amounts are only reflected in the Total NRC Budget Authority and Full-Time Equivalents table in the Executive Summary.