Shutdown likely averted

Editor's note: This article was modified after its original publication to add and clarify information.

In a last-chance effort to end a dispute that threatened a partial government shutdown, the Senate has reached a deal that could keep the government funded for another few weeks. The Senate passed a pair of bills early on the evening of Sept. 26, throwing the ball back to the House of Representatives.

The first bill provides funding for the government until early next week. That gives the House time to pass the continuing resolution that will keep the government functioning into mid-November. 

The sticking point has been funding for disaster relief for the Federal Emergency Management Agency. The House-passed bill required such spending to be offset by cuts elsewhere, a measure Senate Democrats rejected.

Early predictions indicated that FEMA could run out of funds as early as Sept. 26, but an official later said the agency might have enough money until Oct. 1 when new funding kicks in. That revelation allowed the Senate to bypass the debate over offsets for disaster-aid spending. 

The House is in recess this week. Senate leaders are hoping the House will agree to adopt the shorter-term measure in a pro forma session later this week, and then pass the larger CR early next week, according to published accounts.

About the Author

Camille Tuutti is a former FCW staff writer who covered federal oversight and the workforce.

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