House to Vote on FY 2013 Continuing Resolution

House leaders unveiled a six-month Continuing Resolution (CR) yesterday that would for the most part fund federal programs in FY 2013 at their current FY 2012 levels.

Since neither the House not the Senate this summer came anywhere close to completing action on the 12 annual appropriations bills, congressional leaders decided to avoid the highly partisan debates over spending until after the November elections and any post-election lame duck session. The new fiscal year formally begins on October 1 and the draft CR crafted by the House would be in force through March 27, 2013.

The House CR is relatively “clean,” or without an abundance of policy riders that sometimes accompany these bills. However, since it may be the last piece of legislation to be approved by Congress prior to the election, there may be attempts in the Senate to add items to the measure.

For instance, the authorization for federal welfare programs expires at the end of the month, as does the current Farm Bill, so an extension of those laws could ultimately be included. In addition, some Senators are eyeing the CR as a vehicle for provisions that would delay the implementation of the $109 billion budget sequester that is scheduled to occur in January.

House leaders are looking to schedule a vote on its version of a CR on Thursday.


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