As Congress returns for the lame duck session following the midterm elections, the number one priority will be wrapping up the outstanding appropriations bills for Fiscal Year (FY) 2019. In September, Congress passed two large appropriations packages providing full-year FY19 funding for several agencies covered by the Military Construction-Veterans Affairs, Legislative Branch, Energy and Water, Department of Defense and Labor-Health and Human Services appropriations bills as well as a Continuing Resolution (CR) for other agencies that have otherwise not received FY19 appropriations, thereby preventing a partial government shutdown through December 7, 2018.
The following NTEU-represented agencies are currently operating under the CR: IRS and other Department of Treasury Offices and Bureaus, CBP and FLETC, CFTC, EPA, FCC, FDA (portions), FEC, NPS, PTO, SEC, and USDA. Please note that many agencies have multiple funding sources—appropriations, fees, trust and working capital funds—so each agency can have employees covered under different funding sources and related laws.
While a House-Senate conference committee held negotiations earlier this fall over the Financial Services and General Government, Agriculture, Interior, and Transportation-Housing and Urban Development appropriations bill (referred to as minibus II), which also contains the Senate-passed 1.9 percent pay increase for federal employees, neither chamber has passed any funding measures nor held conferences for the Homeland Security, Commerce-Justice-Science, and State-Foreign Operations appropriations bills. Failure to resolve outstanding issues may result in a full or partial CR for the remaining agencies, or even a shutdown the evening of December 7th.
As Congress and the White House discuss the path forward following the midterm elections, NTEU will continue to push for adequate funding for our agencies and a pay increase for federal workers, while fighting against a government shutdown.
I will keep you posted as things develop once Congress returns next week.