Cutting it Close: Feds Narrowly Avoid Government Shutdown

With just hours to spare before a critical midnight deadline, President Donald Trump on Thursday signed a temporary spending bill to avoid another government shutdown.

Earlier on Thursday, the Senate passed the short-term funding bill by a vote of 74-20. The House approved the bill on Tuesday by a vote of 231-192.

The short-term spending measure, known as a continuing resolution, will keep the government running through December 20, 2019, while lawmakers try to strike a long-term appropriations deal.

The latest continuing resolution keeps spending at current levels and heads off a lapse in funding that would have forced multiple federal agencies to shut down.

While this continuing resolution temporarily ensures that the government will remain open, it signals that lawmakers are, once again, unable to agree on a series of year-long spending bills.

A similar situation led to the longest government shutdown in U.S. history earlier this year. That impasse, which lasted 35 days, had a significant impact on federal employees, as well as related segments of the Maryland and regional economies.

As previously reported on Conduit Street, approximately 172,000 Marylanders impacted by the 2019 partial government shutdown missed out on an estimated $778 million in wages, resulting in $57.5 million less in state and local income tax withholding and $2.1 million less in sales tax collections. While furloughed federal workers received back pay once the shutdown ended, it’s unlikely that federal contractors were able to recoup lost wages.

In response, the Maryland General Assembly this year passed the Federal Shutdown Paycheck Protection Act, which provides for no-interest loans to essential government employees in the state who must report to work without pay.

Stay tuned to Conduit Street for more information.

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Previous Conduit Street Coverage: Feds Narrowly Avert Another Government Shutdown… for Now

Previous Conduit Street Coverage: Federal Government Shutdown: State, Local Governments Feel the Pinch

Previous Conduit Street Coverage: Maryland Counties Rally Resources for Furloughed Workers

Previous Conduit Street Coverage: “Federal Shutdown Paycheck Protection Act” First Bill Signed into Law