From First Branch Forecast:

For decades, Congress has undercut its ability to meet its Constitution obligations by providing itself inadequate resources to meet its legislative, constitutional, and oversight responsibilities. Discretionary Executive branch resources, and power, on the other hand, have grown at more than double the rate of the Legislative branch. In addition, Congress has been driven to rely on lobbyists for expertise because it lacks the in-house expertise. Today a coalition of nearly 70 individuals, good government advocates, and businesses have sent a message for appropriators: it’s time to reinvest in Congress. The letter was organized by Demand Progress and the Lincoln Network. Less than 1% of all discretionary federal funds go to Congress and its support agencies, and while non-defense discretionary spending has increased 55% over the last 25 years, the Legislative branch budget has grown just 30% in that same period. And the vast majority of those funds have gone for non-legislative purposes, such as the Capitol Police and the Architect of the Capitol. In the coming weeks, Congressional appropriators will set the 302(b) allocations — the top-line numbers for each of the 12 appropriations subcommittees, including the Legislative Branch Subcommittee. Congress must have the funds to hire enough staff, pay them appropriately, and give them the resources that they need. This is the only way the Legislative branch can serve as a proper check on the Executive branch and conduct necessary legislative, oversight, and constituent services work.  We urge a 10% increase in funding to the Legislative branch, or $530.9 million, which is a tiny percentage of overall discretionary spending. While we have seen some efforts to address the underfunding of the Legislative branch, and we applaud those efforts, much more is needed. We need to help the Legislative branch modernize and meet this current moment of crisis.