Continuing Resolution Would Provide Stopgap Funding
House Appropriations Chairman Harold Rogers (R-KY) is putting together a proposal to fund the second half of fiscal year (FY) 2013 that would combine new Defense and Military Construction-VA bills with a stopgap funding measure, known as a continuing resolution (CR.)
This measure would continue to fund the rest of the government at FY 2012 levels less the sequestered amount that took effect on March 1st. Reports have surfaced that the CR may include ways for the Administration to mitigate the effect of sequestration on defense and veterans’ programs by allowing flexibility in how the cuts will be implemented. No such flexibility for non-defense programs has yet to be considered.
It is anticipated that the plan will be made public as early as this week. Although it is unknown if or when House leadership will decide to bring this particular legislation to the floor, Congress is expected to pass an FY 2013 appropriations bill prior to March 27, 2013, when the six-month CR currently funding the government will expire.
The NY Times reported on March 4th that Speaker John Boehner has offered some hope that the budget process might end up with “a broad agreement that lowers the deficit, overhauls the tax code and undoes at least some of the automatic spending cuts.”
“I don’t think anyone quite understands how it gets resolved,” he acknowledged. “After we do our continuing resolution, we’ll begin to work on our budget. The House has done a budget every year that I’ve been speaker. The Senate hasn’t done a budget for four years. They’ve committed to do a budget this year.
“And I hope that they do. And out of that discussion and out of that process, maybe we can find a way to deal with our long-term spending problem.”