Kellie Lunney | September 28, 2016 | 0 Comments

Congress Votes to Keep Government Open

Architect of the Capitol

This story has been updated.

House lawmakers late Wednesday passed a short-term continuing resolution by a vote of 342-85 that funds the government through Dec. 9. Rep. Jim Jordan, R-Ohio, offered an amendment to the bill which would automatically extend the CR through Jan. 18 if lawmakers fail to agree on a subsequent deal to keep the government open after Dec. 9. The Senate passed the legislation earlier Wednesday on a vote of 72-26. The votes in both chambers avert a government shutdown just two days before the 2017 fiscal year begins Oct. 1. 

Lawmakers tentatively reached the last-minute deal Tuesday night to avert a government shutdown on Saturday by agreeing to include funding to deal with the water crisis in Flint, Mich., in the 2016 Water Resources Development Act. The Flint funding, which is in the Senate version but not the House version of the waterways bill, became the major sticking point in negotiations over a continuing resolution to keep the government open past Sept. 30. 

» Get the best federal news and ideas delivered right to your inbox. Sign up here.

Most Senate Democrats opposed the CR that Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., put forward because it didn’t include funding for Flint. The CR does include aid for communities devastated by recent floods in Louisiana and elsewhere, as well as money to combat the Zika virus.

Maryland Sen. Barbara Mikulski, the ranking Democrat on the Appropriations Committee, voted against the CR on Tuesday but after the deal was brokered, offered her support on the floor Wednesday. “This is an acceptable compromise,” said the outgoing senator, who represents 300,000 federal workers. “It might not be the most desirable because we will all – we could continue to debate and dispute that – but it is acceptable.”

Senate Democrats had wanted to include the Flint money in the CR because it’s considered must-pass legislation. Senate Republicans said they would get it into the House waterways bill eventually during conference over that legislation, but Democrats were skeptical, so they forced the debate into CR negotiations.

McConnell worked with the House leadership to get them to immediately amend the water projects bill to include the Flint funding – legislation the chamber is voting on Wednesday afternoon – so that the CR could move forward before Saturday. The two chambers still will have to hammer out differences on the waterways bill in conference this fall, so it will take some time for the money to get to Flint.

Comments
JOIN THE DISCUSSION

Thank you for subscribing to newsletters from GovExec.com.
We think these reports might interest you:

  • Going Agile:Revolutionizing Federal Digital Services Delivery

    Here’s one indication that times have changed: Harriet Tubman is going to be the next face of the twenty dollar bill. Another sign of change? The way in which the federal government arrived at that decision.

    Download
  • Cyber Risk Report: Cybercrime Trends from 2016

    In our first half 2016 cyber trends report, SurfWatch Labs threat intelligence analysts noted one key theme – the interconnected nature of cybercrime – and the second half of the year saw organizations continuing to struggle with that reality. The number of potential cyber threats, the pool of already compromised information, and the ease of finding increasingly sophisticated cybercriminal tools continued to snowball throughout the year.

    Download
  • Featured Content from RSA Conference: Dissed by NIST

    Learn more about the latest draft of the U.S. National Institute of Standards and Technology guidance document on authentication and lifecycle management.

    Download
  • GBC Issue Brief: The Future of 9-1-1

    A Look Into the Next Generation of Emergency Services

    Download
  • GBC Survey Report: Securing the Perimeters

    A candid survey on cybersecurity in state and local governments

    Download
  • The New IP: Moving Government Agencies Toward the Network of The Future

    Federal IT managers are looking to modernize legacy network infrastructures that are taxed by growing demands from mobile devices, video, vast amounts of data, and more. This issue brief discusses the federal government network landscape, as well as market, financial force drivers for network modernization.

    Download
  • eBook: State & Local Cybersecurity

    CenturyLink is committed to helping state and local governments meet their cybersecurity challenges. Towards that end, CenturyLink commissioned a study from the Government Business Council that looked at the perceptions, attitudes and experiences of state and local leaders around the cybersecurity issue. The results were surprising in a number of ways. Learn more about their findings and the ways in which state and local governments can combat cybersecurity threats with this eBook.

    Download

When you download a report, your information may be shared with the underwriters of that document.