Update: House Approves Government Funding Bill

In a significant development, the House of Representatives has successfully passed a crucial funding package, marking a step forward in averting potential shutdowns that adversely affect small businesses. SBLS is dedicated to following the journey of this funding legislation as it progresses through Senate deliberations and eventual enactment.

This week witnessed the House’s approval of a “minibus” appropriations bill with a decisive vote of 339-85. This bill aims to secure funding for various government sectors until the end of the fiscal year 2024.

The legislation, a result of bipartisan efforts, combines six appropriations bills covering a wide range of areas including Agriculture, Rural Development, FDA, and Related Agencies; Commerce, Justice, Science, and Related Agencies; Energy and Water Development; Interior, Environment, and Related Agencies; Military Construction, Veterans Affairs, and Related Agencies; and Transportation, Housing and Urban Development, and Related Agencies.

Both political parties have found reasons to commend the agreement. House Appropriations Committee Chair Kay Granger (R-Tex.) stated that the package achieves the goal of “strategically increase defense spending and make targeted cuts to wasteful non-defense programs.”

Senator Patty Murray (D-Wa.), on the other hand, emphasized the funding allocated to the Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants, and Children (WIC), noting, “Democrats fought hard to protect investments that matter to working people everywhere and help keep our economy strong—rejecting devastating cuts to housing, nutrition assistance, and more.”

Following its passage in the House, the bill is now slated for swift consideration in the Senate, with a deadline for agency funding set for Friday, March 8th.

It’s important to note, however, that this $470 billion compromise does not extend to the entire government. Due to its alignment with the funding timelines set by previous Continuing Resolutions (CRs) designed to prevent shutdowns, several federal agencies, including the Small Business Administration (SBA), will have to await further action. This is expected to happen when the House reconvenes next week, with additional funding measures anticipated.

SBLS remains vigilant in monitoring these developments closely and will keep providing timely updates on the situation.

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