News / USA

    US Congress Agrees on 2014 Spending Bill

    FILE - House Appropriations Committee Chairman Rep. Harold Rogers, R-Ky.
    FILE - House Appropriations Committee Chairman Rep. Harold Rogers, R-Ky.
    VOA News
    Negotiators in the U.S. House of Representatives and Senate have reached an agreement on a trillion-dollar budget that would fund the federal government though September, a deal that potentially avoids another government shutdown.

    President Barack Obama said Tuesday he is "very pleased" at the accord and urged Congress to quickly pass the compromise.

    The deal was announced late Monday by Democratic Senator Barbara Mikulski, the chair of the Senate Appropriations Committee, and Republican Representative Harold Rogers, her counterpart in the Republican-controlled House.  

    The detailed spending plan is the result of an agreement reached in December between the House and Senate that would fund the federal government for the next two years.  That agreement was crafted in the aftermath of a 16-day government shutdown back in October. 

    The new spending bill eliminates the deep automatic spending cuts, known as sequestration, that affected both domestic and military programs last year.  The measure includes an extra $92 billion to fund overseas military operations, much of it for the ongoing war in Afghanistan.  It also reverses a cut in pension payments to disabled military veterans and survivors.  

    The measure eliminates funding for high-speed rail projects supported by Obama, as well as money to allow the United States to meet its commitments to the International Monetary Fund.

    But Republicans failed to cut funding for the Affordable Care Act, the president's signature domestic legislation, although they managed to trim $1 billion from a public health fund established under the law.  

    The federal government is currently operating under a temporary spending bill that expires Wednesday.  Lawmakers are expected to pass another short-term bill that would finance the government for a few days until the new comprehensive bill is approved by Congress and signed into law by President Obama.   

     
    Some information for this report was provided by AP, AFP and Reuters.

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    Comment Sorting
    Comments
         
    by: Galactic Cannibal from: California
    January 14, 2014 2:36 PM
    And where will these spineless politicians get this $1.1 trillion from. Our country ha a national debt of $17 trillion. Surprise surprise , they will either print mores dollar bills or borrow from other countries , including CHINA. Don't forget the Federal reserve Board is printing $75 billion every month, that should help !
    In Response

    by: Final Solution from: Paris (Texas)
    January 14, 2014 7:18 PM
    Cancel Medicare. Cancel Social Security. Put a pillow over Grandma's face while she sleeps.

    Problem solved, budget balanced.

    Sorry, where's your pillow? Oh, are you spineless too?

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