Congress approved today, April 28, a one-week extension of the FY 2017 Continuing Resolution in order to continue funding federal agencies, thus averting a partial government shutdown at midnight tonight. The Resolution, H. J. Res. 99, will extend through May 5, 2017, and the President has said he will sign it. This is the third FY 2017 Continuing Resolution (see our General Memoranda 16-059 of September 29, 2016, and 16-076 of December 12, 2016).
The only FY 2017 appropriations bill enacted thus far is for Military Construction-Veterans Administration programs. Congressional appropriators have been negotiating the remaining 11 appropriations bills which would likely be combined into an “omnibus” piece of legislation. Congress is hoping that the one-week CR will be a sufficient amount of time to finish the negotiations and produce an omnibus appropriations bill next week. Given that there are only five months left in the fiscal year, the changes that can be made from the FY 2016 funding levels and conditions provided under the CR, will be somewhat limited. It does, however, offer opportunities for some increases over FY 2016.
Approval of the CR was in doubt earlier in the week over the insistence of the Administration that FY 2017 funding be provided to begin work on constructing a wall on our southern border and its resistance to continuing to pay subsidies for low-income persons who participate in the Affordable Care Act marketplace. Ultimately, the Administration dropped those demands. Democrats also indicated they would not support the one-week CR if House Republican leadership brought to a vote this week another version of the Affordable Care Act replace/repeal bill. The House GOP did not schedule such a bill for floor action, lacking the votes for passage.
Please let us know if we may provide additional information regarding developments on FY 2017 appropriations.