The House Appropriations Committee introduced another FY18 continuing resolution (CR) this week that would fund most of the federal government through January 19, 2018. The current CR expires on December 22. This new CR also includes a full-year funding bill for the Department of Defense, $2.1B for the Veterans Choice program, and a fix for the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP), extending funding for the program for five years and extending funding for community health centers for two years. The full year defense bill includes the additional funds for missile defense that were requested by the Trump administration. The bill does not include emergency aid for hurricane and fire states and territories. The House plans to vote on the measure after they have completed action on a tax reform conference bill.
House and Senate Republicans admit that they do not have the 60 votes needed for passage in the Senate. Democrats are reluctant to fund the military for the full year before reaching an agreement with Republicans on nondefense spending. The budget caps for FY18 are $549B for defense and $516B for nondefense. A few weeks ago, Republicans offered to increase the defense limit by $54B and nondefense by $37B. The same increases would be allowed for FY19 as well. Democrats rejected the offer, demanding equivalent increases in defense and nondefense spending.
The Senate may strip out the full-year defense spending bill as well as the CHIP provision because of the way it was financed. They may also add emergency funding for disaster relief for hurricane and wildfire victims. The House is expected to release a third disaster aid package today. Their package is expected to be significantly larger than the $44B the administration requested on November 17.
House FY18 Continuing Resolution
Administration’s November 17 Emergency Funding Request