With Fiscal Year 2011 ending on September 30 and with no congressionally approved budget for FY 2012, the House Appropriations Committee introduced legislation this week to keep the government operating for an additional six weeks. The legislation also contains a total of $3.65 billion in disaster relief funding to provide much-needed assistance to those affected by Hurricane Irene, recent wildfires in Texas, floods and tornados in the Midwest and South, the Mid-Atlantic earthquake, and other natural disasters. The bill, known as a continuing resolution (CR), is a must-pass bill that is necessary to prevent a government shutdown and continue federal operations until all spending bills for FY 2012 are enacted.
Currently, the House Appropriations Committee has passed 9 of the 12 annual FY 2012 bills, with six bills having cleared the House. The CR continues government operations at a rate of $1.043 trillion annually, the total amount agreed to by the Congress and the White House in the August debt-ceiling legislation. The CR expires on November 18.
The disaster funding includes $1 billion for fiscal year 2011 and will be available immediately upon enactment. It would provide $226 million for Army Corps of Engineers flood control efforts, and $774 million for the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) Disaster Relief Fund (DRF). This FY 2011 funding is offset by a $1.5 billion cut to the Department of Energy’s Advanced Technology Vehicles Manufacturing Loan Program. In addition, $2.65 billion for the FEMA DRF is provided for continued recovery efforts in FY 2012.
The bill also includes authority to extend the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) until November 18. Under current law, authority to write new flood insurance under the NFIP expires on September 30.
View the text of the legislation.
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