Congress Funds Federal Government Through December, Avoids Shutdown
October 2, 2015
Spending bill includes funding to pay for wildland fire suppression transfers
On September 30, Congress passed and the President signed a Continuing Resolution to fund federal government operations through December 11. The stop-gap spending bill funds federal agencies temporarily at FY 2015 spending levels. FY 2015 ended on October 1 and because Congress has yet to pass FY 2016 appropriations the federal government would have shut down without the Continuing Resolution.
The spending bill includes $700 million in emergency funding that can be used to pay for FY 2015 wildland fire suppression costs. The U.S. Department of the Interior and U.S. Forest Service often are forced to transfer funds from non-fire accounts to pay for wildland fire suppression cost overruns. The National Volunteer Fire Council supports the Wildfire Disaster Funding Act (WDFA), which would fix this problem permanently. This is the first legislation to provide emergency supplemental funding to repay transfers since 2010.