Glossary Term

Pay For

A “pay for” is an informal term for a spending reduction in a legislative package  intended to offset a spending increase within the same package. A pay for is also known as a saver or an offset.

An example of a pay for would be a proposed policy that adds $500 million in new government health spending but includes provisions that eliminate $500 million in existing health spending. The cost score resulting from such a package is $0 even though $500 million in new spending is contained in the policy.

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