CongressA new report from a nonprofit research and advocacy organization commends the Obama administration for its efforts to maintain programs that protect workplace, product and food safety and the environment.

"Safeguarding the Public's Health and Safety: The President's FY 2013 Public Protections Funding Requests" from OMB Watch analyzes the parts of the president's FY 2013 budget request relating to agencies and programs that protect public health and safety.

"The FY 2013 budget request actually proposes very modest increases to four of the 11 program areas the organization examined (consumer product safety oversight, clean water and clean air programs, and compliance with health and safety standards)," notes the report. "Besides a proposed six percent increase in the budget of the Consumer Product Safety Commission, the president proposes to use industry user fees to significantly increase the funds available to monitor and improve food safety and drug and medical device safety. Other public protections programs were essentially at the same level of funding as in FY 2012. The exception was workplace safety, which saw a $43 million reduction in the request for the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health."

OMB Watch President Katherine McFate said, "Overall, the president's budget upholds the importance of providing agencies with the resources they need to protect the public, even in the face of the spending cuts required by last summer's debt ceiling deal. OMB Watch hopes this public protections budget will be maintained as the process moves to the House and Senate. America is still the richest country in the world; we can afford to be the safest."