Beyond the bipartisan budget deal awaiting President Barack Obama's signature, nothing significant to address the nation's debt will be done in the next year, predicted Erskine Bowles, former co-chair of the president's debt commission.
"I think this is it," he said on CNBC's "Squawk Box" Thursday. "I'm not in the hallelujah chorus on this deal. This is a really tiny, small deal, but it is a step in the right direction."
The Senate approved the two-year agreement on sequester spending cut relief Wednesday. Nine Republicans sided with all 55 members of the Democratic Conference, which includes two independents. The bill passed easily in GOP-controlled House last week.
(Read more: US Senate votes toapprove Ryan/Murray budget deal)
Bowles pointed out, 'It doesn't do a darn thing to reform the entitlements in a manner that we can actually bend the health-care cost curve and slow the rate of growth. "Nor does it do anything to make social security sustainably solvent."
"We have the same big challenges ahead of us that the Congress has been unwilling to deal with," he continued, adding that the threat of "default out there will lead to great uncertainty."
While the budget deal avoids the prospect of a January government closure, tea party conservatives are already gearing-up for a new debt ceiling fight. The temporary agreement that ended the October shutdown only extended the nation's borrowing authority until Feb. 7.
—By CNBC's Matthew J. Belvedere. Follow him on Twitter @Matt_SquawkCNBC.