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Last Minute Deal Reopens Federal Government

Oct 17, 2013

Last night, the House and Senate passed legislation to reopen the
government and raise the debt ceiling. President Obama signed the bill into
law shortly after.

As we reported in yesterday's update, the deal funds the government at FY
2013 ($986 billion) levels through January 15, 2014, and extends the debt
limit through February 7, 2014. If the latter deadline is not met, the Treasury
Department will still be allowed to use "extraordinary measures" to pay the
government's bills. The legislation also requires a budget conference
committee of House and Senate members to negotiate a broader fiscal plan
and report back by December 13, 2013. Additionally, it forces the
Department of Health and Human Services to verify the income of those
receiving health insurance subsidies under the Affordable Care Act (ACA).

The measure also includes several other provisions including, among others:

• compensation for states and other federal grantees that carried out
federal programs or paid federally funded programs during the
shutdown
• extension of the Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF)
program
• clarification of the formula used for and extension of the current Low-
Income Heating Assistance Program (LIHEAP)
• codification of the Department of Education's highly qualified teacher
(HQT) regulations through the 2015-2016 school year
• prohibition of a cost of living adjustment (COLA) for members of
Congress for FY 2014
• funding increase for the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) to reduce
backlog of disability claims
• funding increase for the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA)
operations account to avoid disruptions to the aviation network and
prevent furloughs during the authorized period
• extension of the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD)
Rental Assistance Demonstration program

Today, federal employees are returning to their jobs. (All will receive back pay for furloughed time). However, it could take several days for departments and agencies to resume normal operations at full capacity.