As you are aware from my earlier posts, on Friday, December 8, the current Continuing Resolution (CR) funding federal agencies will expire. Congress must vote to pass a CR, an omnibus appropriations bill, or some combination thereof, with the President signing the measure into law, to keep the federal government open past the 8th.
As of today, none of the FY 2018 appropriations bills have been enacted. Action is also needed to address the nation’s debt limit (it has been suspended temporarily under the CR), as well as the overall spending caps for FY 2018, otherwise sequestration would be triggered in January causing immediate across-the-board spending cuts.
A meeting had been planned this afternoon between the President and congressional leaders to discuss these looming year-end funding issues. However, following a morning tweet from the President, congressional Democratic leaders announced they would not attend, and instead plan to negotiate with congressional Republicans going forward, without the White House. In addition to funding, major policy debates remain over various immigration, health care, and disaster recovery issues, whose inclusion and non-inclusion into a final deal could threaten needed votes for passage to prevent a shutdown.
As you can see, the overall situation is very chaotic and fluid, with only 9 days left before the December 8th shutdown deadline.
We support Senator Cardin’s (D-MD) bill, S. 861, that requires all federal employees to be paid in the event there is a shutdown, and that also provides for the availability of leave for those still on the job, and are working with Rep. Beyer’s (D-VA) office on re-introduction of a similar bill.
I will keep you updated on further developments, and want to assure you that NTEU is urging Congress to keep federal employees paid and on the job in December.
For more information, and to see what you can do, please visit the NTEU Legislative Action Center.