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Friday, April 19, 2013

FY2013 Continuing Resolutions: Analysis of Components and Congressional Action

Jessica Tollestrup
Analyst on Congress and the Legislative Process

This report provides analysis of the components of the two FY2013 continuing resolutions (CR) and congressional action on those CRs.

Prior to the beginning of the fiscal year, the House and Senate Appropriations Committees each reported 11 out of 12 regular appropriations bills. Seven regular appropriations bills were passed by the House; no regular appropriations bills were passed by the Senate. None of the regular appropriations bills were enacted into law. The first CR for FY2013 was signed into law on September 28, 2012 (H.J.Res. 117; P.L. 112-175). On March 26, 2013, H.R. 933 (P.L. 113-6) was signed into law, which contained the texts of five regular appropriations acts and provided continuing appropriations through the remainder of the fiscal year for the other seven bills.

The first, part-year CR for FY2013 covered all 12 regular appropriations bills by providing budget authority for projects and activities that had been funded in FY2012 by P.L. 112-55, P.L. 112-74, and P.L. 112-77, with specified exceptions. Funding in the CR was effective October 1, 2012, through March 27, 2013, a duration of nearly the first six months of the fiscal year. Budget authority for projects and activities was provided at the rate they were funded in FY2012. Most of these projects and activities were also subject to an across-the-board increase of less than 1% (0.612%). The CR included several “anomalies”—provisions that provide exceptions to the general formula and purpose for which FY2012 funding is continued. The Congressional Budget Office (CBO) estimated that the total annualized level of budget authority for regular appropriations was $1.047 trillion, with a total annualized spending rate of $1.154 trillion once budget authority designated as provided by Section 251(b) of the Balanced Budget and Emergency Deficit Control Act (BBEDCA), is included. The CR included two new reporting requirements for specified departments and agencies as well as the Office of Management and Budget (OMB).

The subsequent full-year CR for FY2013 extends the FY2012 funding in P.L. 112-55 and P.L. 112-74 for a total of 7 regular appropriations bills: (1) Energy and Water Development, (2) Financial Services, (3) Interior, (4) Labor/Health and Human Services/Education, (5) Legislative Branch, (6) State/Foreign Operations, (7) Transportation/Housing and Urban Development Appropriations bills. Most of the additional FY2012 funding provided by the Disaster Relief Appropriations Act of 2012 (P.L. 112-77) is continued for FY2013. Generally, funding in the CR is effective for the full fiscal year—October 1, 2012 through September 30, 2013. Projects and activities in the referenced FY2012 appropriations acts are funded in the same amount for FY2013. Like the part-year CR it replaced, the full-year CR also includes a number of anomalies that provide exceptions to the purpose and amount of the FY2012 funding that is continued. The total CBO estimated level of budget authority for appropriations in FY2013 is $1.043 trillion, with total spending of $1.196 trillion once budget authority designated as provided by Section 251(b) of the BBEDCA is included. The CR maintains the two new reporting requirements initially provided by the part-year CR, with some technical changes.

For general information on the content of CRs and historical data on CRs enacted between FY1977 and FY2012, see CRS Report R42647, Continuing Resolutions: Overview of Components and Recent Practices, by Jessica Tollestrup.

Date of Report: April 10, 2013
Number of Pages: 17
Order Number: R42782
Price: $29.95

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