House Passes Stopgap Funding Bill

February 9, 2022

On Tuesday, Feb. 8, the U.S. House voted 272-162 to approve the Further Additional Extending Government Funding Act. The bill was offered by Appropriations Chairwoman Rosa DeLauro (D-Conn.) and is a bipartisan continuing resolution (CR) to continue federal government funding through March 11.

If passed by both chambers, it will buy top appropriators three more weeks to reach a larger deal on an omnibus package to keep the government running for this fiscal year. Appropriators will still need to draft an omnibus covering 12 annual spending bills. House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer (D-Md.) called those talks “very vigorous” and expressed optimism about striking a deal.

Included in the short-term spending measure are a few “anomalies” including providing the military with an extra $350 million to handle the contamination of drinking water in Hawaii following the recent leak from a military fuel storage facility. Other anomalies would allow an increase to the Interior Department’s Working Capital Fund at whatever rate is necessary to implement needed cybersecurity safeguards, and money to cover advanced procurement of the Navy’s Columbia Class Submarine to prevent significant schedule delays.

At issue, among other disagreements, are the percentages by which defense and nondefense spending will increase. Most Republicans want to see a boost in defense spending, while Democrats want a larger hike for nondefense spending, which they argue has been underfunded for years. There is also some discussion as to whether congressional leaders and the White House can agree on new COVID relief funding, as well as disaster aid, to the omnibus.

Appropriators will need to reach a topline deal soon to ensure the three-week stopgap provides enough time for them to draft all 12 fiscal 2022 bills and pass the omnibus package through both chambers. 

The House is scheduled to be in session through Wednesday before adjourning for two weeks for committee and district work. The Senate will be in session next week but on recess the following week.