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File #: 19-6124   
Type: Staff Briefing - Without Ordinance
In control: Intergovernmental Relations Committee
On agenda: 8/21/2019
Posting Language: Update on federal legislative actions and the 116th Congress [Jeff Coyle, Director, Government & Public Affairs]
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TO: Intergovernmental Relations Council Committee

FROM: Jeff Coyle, Director of Government & Public Affairs

SUBJECT: Federal Legislative Update

DATE: August 16, 2019

This update will provide an update of key issues from the 116th Congress and the federal legislative advocacy efforts by the City. The 116th Congress is comprised of two one-year sessions running from January 3, 2019 to January 3, 2021. Congress is currently in its August recess and will return the week of September 9, giving the House and Senate three weeks to finalize passage of FY 2020 appropriations.

116th Congress - 1st Session

Federal Budget and Debt Ceiling: On August 1 the President signed the Bipartisan Budget Act of 2019. The legislation approved by the House and Senate on July 25 and August 1, respectively, sets spending caps for FY 2020 and 2021 and lifts the debt ceiling for two years. The deal adds more than $100 billion in new spending compared with fiscal 2019 levels, where top-line defense spending was $716 billion and nondefense was $620 billion. The top-line for defense spending would be $738 billion and $740 billion for the 2020 and 2021 fiscal years, respectively. Nondefense spending would be $632 billion for fiscal 2020 and $634.5 billion for fiscal 2021. FY 2020 funding across all federal agencies will get a nearly 4 percent boost over FY 2019.

FY 2020 Appropriations: The Budget deal reached by the House and Senate significantly reduces the possibility of a government shutdown. However, Congress must still finalize and pass the necessary appropriations bills under the agreed-to spending caps. Prior to the budget agreement the House of Representatives had passed all 12 appropriations bills, primarily in two omnibus packages approved in mid-June. The Senate Appropriations Committee had not considered any appropriations bills prior to the budget agreement being reached, the first time in over thirt...

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