President Barack Obama wants the Federal Election Commission to get a modest budget boost.
The White House's fiscal year 2017 budget proposal calls for the FEC, an agency that's recently suffered from anemic funding, staffing cuts and internal discord, to receive about $80.5 million — more than ever before.
The funding would allow the FEC to employ the equivalent of 365 full-time staffers, according to the proposal released today by the White House's Office of Management and Budget. That represents 34 more staffers than the agency employed just two years ago — about a 10 percent workforce increase.
An FEC budget allocation at the level the White House is proposing "would provide the commission with adequate funds to fulfill its mission of protecting the integrity of the federal campaign finance system," said agency Chairman Matthew Petersen, a Republican.
The FEC's budget figure does come with one key caveat: $8 million of its proposed $80.5 million is reserved for expenses associated with the agency's likely move from its current headquarters in downtown Washington, D.C., to another, yet-to-be-selected building.