Coding Congressional Budget Office Bill Scoring Reports

The Congressional Budget Office (CBO) was created with the mandate to provide research assistance to Congress. Its most important role is to provide cost estimates for congressional bills that make it out of the committee system prior to voting on the chamber floors. On its website, the CBO maintains a record of all the bill reports it has issued dating back to 1997, a total of over 10,000 reports. Professor Derek Epp (Government) is extracting the following information from these reports: (1) the relevant budgetary subfunction, (2) the relevant government agency, (3) if the bill effects outlays or revenues, (4) if the bill includes tax expenditures, (5) the net budgetary effect of the bill, (6) the cost-per-year, where relevant, (7) if the costs are offset to any degree by anticipated behavioral changes, and (8) if the bill carries unfunded intergovernmental or private mandates. This new CBO dataset will then be linked to existing data on bill sponsorships already available through the Policy Agendas Project.