Congress approves 6-month CR.

September 25, 2012

On September 22, Congress voted to approve H.J.Res. 117, the Continuing Appropriations Resolution, 2013, which funds the government through March 2013. The continuing resolution (CR) will fund the government at $1.047 trillion, which represents a slight increase above fiscal year (FY) 2012 levels, and is the amount specified by the Budget Control Act (BCA), the 2011 deficit reduction law that set annual budgetary caps for government spending for fiscal years 2012-2021.  

The House is now in recess and the Senate will hold “pro forma” sessions through the November elections.  Members of Congress will return to Capitol Hill following the elections to address the “fiscal slope” approaching at the end of the year. Decisions over tax policy, sequestration, and other important matters will likely be made during this period.  

Under the BCA, $109 billion in automatic, across-the-board cuts (“sequesters”) to both defense and non-discretionary programs will go into effect on January 2, 2013. Congress has shown a willingness to prevent such indiscriminate cuts from taking effect, but thus far has been unable to come to an agreement on an alternative.  

National Skills Coalition has joined with 60 other national organizations to form the NDD Summit, urging Congress to adopt a balanced approach to deficit reduction in order to avoid the potentially devastating effects of sequestration.  

If sequestration goes into effect, National Skills Coalition estimates 3 million individuals nationwide will lose access to workforce education and training. For more information on what sequestration would mean for federally-funded workforce development programs, see the National Skills Coalition report detailing the potential state-by-state impact of the cuts.