(a) Transmittal of special message
Whenever the President, the Director of the Office of Management and Budget, the head of any department or agency of the United States, or any officer or employee of the United States proposes to defer any budget authority provided for a specific purpose or project, the President shall transmit to the House of Representatives and the Senate a special message specifying—
(1) the amount of the budget authority proposed to be deferred;
(2) any account, department, or establishment of the Government to which such budget authority is available for obligation, and the specific projects or governmental functions involved;
(3) the period of time during which the budget authority is proposed to be deferred;
(4) the reasons for the proposed deferral, including any legal authority invoked to justify the proposed deferral;
(5) to the maximum extent practicable, the estimated fiscal, economic, and budgetary effect of the proposed deferral; and
(6) all facts, circumstances, and considerations relating to or bearing upon the proposed deferral and the decision to effect the proposed deferral, including an analysis of such facts, circumstances, and considerations in terms of their application to any legal authority, including specific elements of legal authority, invoked to justify such proposed deferral, and to the maximum extent practicable, the estimated effect of the proposed deferral upon the objects, purposes, and programs for which the budget authority is provided.
A special message may include one or more proposed deferrals of budget authority. A deferral may not be proposed for any period of time extending beyond the end of the fiscal year in which the special message proposing the deferral is transmitted to the House and the Senate.
(b) Consistency with legislative policy
Deferrals shall be permissible only—
(1) to provide for contingencies;
(2) to achieve savings made possible by or through changes in requirements or greater efficiency of operations; or
(3) as specifically provided by law.
No officer or employee of the United States may defer any budget authority for any other purpose.
The provisions of this section do not apply to any budget authority proposed to be rescinded or that is to be reserved as set forth in a special message required to be transmitted under section 683 of this title.
CODIFICATION Section was formerly classified to section 1403 of Title 31 prior to the general revision and enactment of Title 31, Money and Finance, by Pub. L. 97–258, §1, Sept. 13, 1982, 96 Stat. 877.AMENDMENTS 1987—Pub. L. 100–119 amended section generally, substituting substantially similar provisions in subsecs. (a) and (c) and substituting subsec. (b) for former subsec. (b) which read as follows: "Any amount of budget authority proposed to be deferred, as set forth in a special message transmitted under subsection (a) of this section, shall be made available for obligation if either House of Congress passes an impoundment resolution disapproving such proposed deferral."
2 U.S.C. § 684 (2018)