H.R. 1255: Government Shutdown Prevention Act

H.R. 1255

Government Shutdown Prevention Act

Date
April 1, 2011 (112th Congress, 1st Session)

Staff Contact
Communications

Floor Situation

On Friday, April 1, 2011, the House is scheduled to consider H.R. 1255, the Government Shutdown Prevention Act, under a rule.  The bill was introduced on March 30, 2011, by Rep. Steve Womack (R-AZ) and referred to the Committee on Appropriations, as well as the committees on Oversight and Government Reform, House Administration, and Budget.

Bill Summary

Funding the Government for the Remainder of the FY 2011

H.R. 1255 would stipulate that if the House has not received a message from the Senate prior to April 6, 2011, stating that the Senate has passed a measure providing for appropriations to fund the government for the remainder of FY 2011, the provisions of H.R. 1 as passed by the House on February 19, 2011, would be enacted into law and government operations would be automatically funded under H.R. 1 through FY 2011.  As with any law, the provisions of H.R. 1255 would only take effect if the bill were approved by the Senate and signed by the president.

 

Treatment of Member’s Pay During a Government Shutdown

H.R. 1255 would prohibit the Secretary of the Senate and the Chief Administrative Officer of the House from disbursing Member pay for every day following a lapse of more than 24 hours in appropriations for any federal agency as a result of a failure to enact a regular appropriations bill or because the limitation on the debt of the U.S. has been reached.  In addition, the bill would prohibit the president from receiving pay for any period in which there is a lapse of more than 24 hours in appropriations for any federal agency as a result of a failure to enact a regular appropriations bill or because the limitation on the debt of the U.S. has been reached.

Background

On February 19, 2011, the House approved H.R. 1, a bill to provide discretionary funding for government functions for the duration of FY 2011, by a vote of 235 - 189.  As passed, H.R. 1 would have saved $61.5 billion from FY 2010 spending levels as provided under a continuing resolution (CR) which expired on March 4, 2011.  Since the passage of H.R. 1, two additional short-term CRs were approved by Congress and signed into law in order to provide temporary funding for discretionary government operations.  The first short-term bill was a two-week CR, H.J.Res. 44, which cut $4 billion from FY 2010 spending levels and eliminated funding for eight government programs.  The second short-term CR, H.J.Res. 48, provided three weeks of discretionary funding and cut an additional $6 billion from FY 2010 levels while eliminating or reducing funding for 25 government programs.  Funding under H.J.Res. 48 is set to expire on April 8, 2011.

While the House has approved a measure to provide funding for FY 2011, the Senate has yet to approve a funding bill for the remainder of the year.  In order to ensure that government funding will be available upon the expiration of H.J.Res. 48 and to prevent a government shutdown, H.R. 1255 would stipulate that H.R. 1 be enacted into law if the Senate has not passed a funding bill for FY 2011 by April 6, 2011.  Lastly, the bill would provide that, in the event of a government shutdown in excess of 24 hours or the limitation on the debt of the United States being reached, no salary payments would be disbursed to Members of Congress or the president for the days in which a government shutdown persists.

Cost

A CBO cost estimate for H.R. 1255 was not available as of press time.