Cost Estimates

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CBO is required to produce a cost estimate for nearly every bill approved by a full committee of the House of Representatives or the Senate. Estimates include statements concerning intergovernmental and private-sector mandates as defined in the Unfunded Mandates Reform Act.

Cost estimates are advisory only; they can, but need not, be used to enforce budgetary rules or targets. CBO does not enforce budgetary rules; the Budget Committees do.

The Majority Leader of the House of Representatives periodically announces bills that will be considered under suspension of the rules in that chamber. CBO estimates the effects of those bills on direct spending and revenues. Before July 2021, CBO provided such estimates directly to the House Leadership and the Budget Committees.