Spending Compromise Nears to Avoid U.S. Government Shutdown

March 21, 2018 07:33 AM
 
Congressional negotiators are nearing agreement on a $1.3 trillion spending bill to avoid a government shutdown this weekend after key compromises were reached during overnight talks.

(Bloomberg) -- Congressional negotiators are nearing agreement on a $1.3 trillion spending bill to avoid a government shutdown this weekend after key compromises were reached during overnight talks, congressional aides from both parties said early Wednesday.

The plan would include money for see-through fencing at the U.S.-Mexico border but not the concrete wall sought by President Donald Trump, some of the aides said. 

The catch-all bill is expected to be unveiled later Wednesday after top leaders meet, Republican and Democratic aides said. It likely will be the last major piece of legislative business before November congressional elections.

Current government funding runs out at the end of the day Friday. Congress may still have to pass a stopgap funding bill to keep the government operating while the House and Senate consider an overall spending measure.

The measure would increase spending on the military by $80 billion and on domestic programs by $63 billion over previous budget limits set out in the bipartisan budget agreement that ended a February shutdown. In addition to the $1.2 trillion in overall funding that was agreed to in February, the military would receive $71 billion in war funds not subject to budget caps.

One aide said the measure won’t strip funding from Planned Parenthood, which provides abortions and other women’s health services, or from cities that shield undocumented immigrants from deportation. It also would bolster Democratic priorities including TIGER infrastructure grants, which would be tripled to $1.5 billion, while sparing the Environmental Protections Agency from the 30 percent cut that Trump requested, that aide said.

The bill would contain funding to combat Russian interference in the 2018 midterm election, the aide said.

 

©2018 Bloomberg L.P.

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