When we last talked about the FY16 budget, it was early October and it was looking like the next Speaker of the House would be Kevin McCarthy (R-CA). As we now know, in early December, the Speakership is very different but we still don’t have a passed-into-law budget. Congress has until this Friday, December 11th, to either pass a budget into law or to pass a stopgap continuing resolution (CR). Or let the government shutdown.
At this point, it’s safe to say that Congress will miss its deadline and will have to pass a short term CR (probably for a week) in order to continue to hammer out a compromise bill. The sticking point is almost completely policy provisions, called riders. Democrats are adamant that any riders on abortion, Syrian refugees, and campaign finance reform, to name but three issues, will be poison pills; Republicans, particularly the very conservative members of the caucus, are saying no bill will move without such riders. A government shutdown is unlikely, though not beyond the realm of possibility.
CRA is continuing to monitor the situation as it unfolds. Once we have some resolution, we’ll be posting the parts that impact our community right here, so keep checking back.