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Ongoing Continuing Resolution Saga: Senate Set to Finalize CR, House Passes Defense Bill

Photo: aoc.gov

True to its name, the continuing resolution passed by the Senate late last week isn’t the end of the government funding saga: it only prolongs – or continues, if you will – the story.

The CR, passed late Friday, after the Senate failed to pass a $1 trillion omnibus spending bill, will fund the Defense Department at 2010 levels through March 4, according to a report on DoDBuzz.

The CR funding, which is set to be finalized today, will be $1.16 billion more than fiscal-year 2010 spending levels, which will help pay for programs that would otherwise be disrupted, Federal News Radio reports.

The Senate’s CR also contains a pay freeze for federal employees beginning in 2011.

Also, on Friday, in a separate spending provision, the House of Representatives passed a $725 billion defense authorization bill, which funds DoD expenditures and is also “chock full of policy provisions,” Defense News reports.

Some of those provisions include requirements on the F-35 fighter program, which has been plagued by cost overruns and delays.

The House appropriations bill provides a surprising cap to not only the lame-duck session of Congress – the period after elections but before the new class of legislators is seated – but also to the year.

Recently, many had speculated whether an authorization bill would even make it out of Congress. Defense News reports that, “For months, it seemed there would be no 2011 Pentagon authorization legislation,” which would also mean a dearth of specific policy requirements.

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