Update: The House Rules Committee made in order an amendment by Armed Services Committee Chairman Howard McKeon (R-CA) to authorize funding to arm the Syrian opposition to fight the Islamic State terrorist group. The amendment does not appropriate new funding, it only allows the Department of Defense (DoD) to request transfers or reprogramming from existing Overseas Contingency Operations (OCO) funding for this purpose.
House Appropriations Committee Chairman Hal Rogers (R-KY) this week released the text of a continuing resolution, or CR, (see Appropriations 101 to learn more) to fund the federal government after September 30, 2014. The legislation, which will likely receive a vote in the House next week, continues funding for all programs, projects, and activities at current levels through December 11, 2014, with small changes. If this CR is signed into law, lawmakers will need to revisit appropriations some time before December 11 to continue funding the government through enactment of full year appropriations or a further CR.
The CR includes changes such as an extension of the Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) program and an extension of Export-Import bank operations through June 30, 2015. There are also some funding increases, such as $88 million in new funding to address the Ebola outbreak and $59 million to address disability claims at the Department of Veterans Affairs. A small across-the-board cut along with select funding changes brings the overall budget authority under the FY2015 spending cap of $1.014 trillion, the same as topline spending level agreed to by the House and Senate, known as 302(a) allocations.