On February 14, one day before a temporary funding resolution was set to expire, the U.S. Senate voted 81–15 to keep the federal government running for the remainder of Fiscal Year 2007 by passing a $463.5 billion measure. On February 15, President Bush signed it into law. Of the total, $57.5 billion will go to the U.S. Department of Education during FY 2007.
The resolution was necessary because Congress failed to pass nine of the eleven annual appropriations bills that are necessary to fund the government and its operations each year before adjourning in December. Instead, it passed a temporary resolution that provided funding until February 15. (Additional background on the resolution is available here.)
“Today’s action is another step towards cleaning up the fiscal mess left by the 109th Congress,” said Senate Majority Leader Harry M. Reid (D-NV).
In the days leading up to the debate, Senate Republicans criticized the Democratic leadership for not allowing them to propose amendments to the resolution, but, in the end, chose to support it rather than to risk a government shutdown.
“This is funding for about half the government,” said Senate Minority Whip Trent Lott (R-MS). “We’ve got to get it done and move on.”
A chart of selected education programs and their funding levels for FY 2006 and FY 2007 will be available at www.all4ed.com when final funding levels for FY 2007 are made available by the U.S. Department of Education. The chart will also include the amounts that programs would receive under the budget proposal that President Bush submitted on February 5.