Avoiding a government shutdown with just an hour to spare, the U.S. Senate late Friday night passed a continuing resolution to fund the government until April 28, 2017. The House had passed the bill, which maintains most federal programs at current funding levels, on Thursday.
Many congressional Democrats argued to extend federal funding for the full fiscal year ending September 30, 2017, but President-elect Trump’s transition team made it clear they wanted an opportunity to revisit federal spending levels when they assume office. Both the House and Senate have adjourned, effectively ending the 114th Congress. The 115th Congress will convene on January 3, and congressional appropriators will face the task of completing work on fiscal year 2017 spending bills during the first months of the Trump administration.
The funding bill includes an additional $872 million for the 21st Century Cures Act, passed with strong bipartisan support last week, with $353 million allocated for the National Institutes of Health, and $20 million to the Food and Drug Administration. New funding is also slated to address the opioid epidemic and to respond to health-related needs from the toxic public water supply crisis in Flint, Michigan.