Averting another threat of a federal government shutdown, Congress on Friday overwhelmingly approved “a sweeping, year-end fiscal package that includes a $1.15 trillion spending measure as well as $620 billion in tax breaks for businesses and low-income workers,” reports The New York Times.
The measure made its way to the desk of President Barack Obama, who pledged to sign the plan that averts a government shutdown and finances federal agencies through next fall, says CNN.
Via The Times:
After a period of belt-tightening in Washington — including automatic budget cuts imposed in 2013 — the spending measure for 2016 provides a notable $66 billion increase in federal outlays above previously agreed-upon limits, divided equally between military and nonmilitary programs. It also represents a return to a more traditional appropriations process, with lawmakers directing money to an array of their priorities, including a $1.4 billion increase for military construction projects and $2 billion increase for the National Institutes of Health.
The White House and Congressional Democrats said they had thwarted the Republicans’ main policy goals, including efforts to cut off government financing for Planned Parenthood and put restrictions on Syrian and Iraqi refugees, while securing a number of their own priorities, including tax benefits for working Americans and to promote renewable energy.
We’re glad that congressional leaders were able to put aside partisan differences and pass a spending plan.