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Showdown Over Funding Bill Threatens Government Shutdown


September 24, 2013


Showdown Over Funding Bill Threatens Government Shutdown

On Friday, the House of Representatives approved a Fiscal Year (FY) 2014 continuing resolution (CR) that will temporarily fund federal programs, including Perkins, through December 15. The stopgap funding bill, which passed on a mostly party-line vote of 230-189, is necessary to prevent a government-wide shutdown when the current fiscal year ends on September 30. The CR will continue funding the federal government at the current, FY 2013 funding levels. For Perkins, federal funding was cut by 5.2 percent in FY 2013 due to sequestration. This resulted in a $58 million reduction in the federal support for CTE in the 2013-14 school year.

The House-passed CR includes a controversial provision that would eliminate all funding for implementation of the Affordable Care Act, also known as Obamacare. Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) has already announced that he will not go along with any effort to delay or defund heath care reform. Reid plans to use a procedural maneuver to remove the contentious language from the CR when the Senate takes up the bill later this week. If the Senate is able to pass a “clean CR” without the defunding of Obamacare, the bill will then return to the House. If the House Republicans insist on reinserting the defunding language into the CR (or any other controversial language)—despite its rejection in the Senate and a veto threat by the White House—the whole process will being all over again. With only a week to go before the fiscal-year deadline, any delay in passing a CR could result in the shutdown of the federal government on October 1. Be sure to check the CTE Policy Watch blog for updates on the shutdown showdown and what it could mean for Perkins funding. 

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