FY 2014 Spending Bills and Debt Limit Increase Expected to Take Center Stage in the New Year

Congress returns this week with only a few days to pass appropriations measures or a continuing resolution, consistent with the end-of-year budget agreement, before January 16th, when temporary funding for the government under the current continuing resolution expires.  The two appropriations bills that fund the vast majority of disability-related programs, the Labor, Health and Human Services, and Education bill (L-HHS-ED) and the Transportation and Housing and Urban Development (T-HUD) bill, may be continued at current spending levels for at least some time because both have recently encountered opposition in Congress.  It will remain to be seen how specific disability-related programs such as supportive housing, special education, and supported employment ultimately fare in 2014.

There is also some concern that the need to raise the debt ceiling again in mid-February to early March may provide another threat to spending programs.  Some Members of Congress may demand further spending cuts as a condition of raising the debt ceiling.

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