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Congress OKs 4-Week Stopgap Spending Measure

Congress on Thursday passed another continuing resolution to avoid a government shutdown and keep federal agencies open through Jan. 19, The Hill reported Thursday.

The Senate approved the stopgap funding measure by a 66-32 vote hours after the House voted 231-188 to clear the bill.

The new CR came a day after Congress cleared a tax reform bill.

The four-week CR will authorize a short-term extension of Section 702 of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act that is set to expire by the end of this month and the Children’s Health Insurance Program.

The measure also includes a waiver for pay-as-you-go rules and budget “anomalies” for the Defense Department.

Deputy Defense Secretary Patrick Shanahan said the passage of the new CR that would keep agencies operational at current funding levels is “bad” but would somehow help the department carry out its job, according to a report by Federal News Radio.

“You’re just going to defer as many choices as you can whether it’s military construction, maintenance,” he told reporters Thursday.

“It’s bad, but the other side of this is we will be able to do our job.”

Senate Armed Services Committee Chairman John McCain (R-Arizona) said in a statement the passage of a new short-term funding measure would delay the commencement of 24 production increases and 48 new procurement programs.

McCain also cited CR’s potential impact on military readiness, service personnel’s training and ship maintenance activities, the report added.

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