Cyclopedia of Congressional Budget Law

Biennial Budgeting



The term biennial budgeting refers to budgeting for a two-year period instead of the more typical annual period.

 GAO Glossary of Terms and Definition (September 2005)

Biennial Budget

A budget covering a period of 2 years. The federal government has an annual budget, but there have been proposals to shift to a biennial budget. The 2-year period can apply to the budget presented to Congress by the President, to the budget resolution adopted by Congress, or to the frequency and period covered by appropriations acts. The Department of Defense Authorization Act, 1986, Pub. L. No. 99–145, required the Department of Defense to submit 2-year budgets beginning with the budgets for 1988 and 1989. However, to date, appropriations have been made on an annual basis.

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References for Biennial Budget

CBO – Report on Biennial Budgeting (Congressional Budget Office Report) February 1988

CBO – Biennial Budgeting – Staff Working Paper (Congressional Budget Office Report) November 1987

CBO – Statement by Alice Rivlin on Advance Budgeting (CBO Report from 502(c) (CBA)) July 1, 1977

CRS – Biennial Budgeting – Options, Issues, and Previous Congressional Action (R41764) April 12, 2011.

GAO – Report on Biennial Budgeting (GAO) October 27, 2000



Benefit-Cost Analysis


Borrowing Authority