Understanding the Appropriations Process
The process that Congress goes through to decide how much money will go to pancreatic cancer research and other things like defense, education, etc, is called the appropriations process. The diagram below describes the various steps in the process. While it may look a little complicated, keep in mind that the process basically consists of the President, the U.S. House of Representatives, and the U.S. Senate reaching an agreement on how the federal government should spend its money. Ideally, the process begins in January when the President introduces his/her version of the budget and finishes by September 30 in time for start of the federal government’s fiscal year, which begins October 1.