Congress appears likely to pass another short-term continuing resolution (CR) to fund the government through mid-February while lawmakers settle on fiscal year (FY) 2018 spending caps. Leaders in both parties are considering a two-year spending deal that would raise the caps above the current FY 2018 levels set by the Budget Control Act. Once a deal is reached, omnibus appropriations legislation is expected to follow shortly thereafter. Even though Congress hasn’t reached a conclusion on FY 2018 spending legislation, discussions over next year’s appropriations will also kick off shortly, as the Administration is expected to release its FY 2019 budget request in mid-February.
Lawmakers are also negotiating a third disaster recovery bill, which could be included in the upcoming CR or final FY 2018 appropriations package. The House passed a $81 billion aid package before the winter holidays, but the Senate has not yet released its version of the legislation.