Congress Inches Towards Funding Government

Congress is expected to pass a stopgap spending bill to fund the federal government through Dec. 23, as current funding expires on Dec. 16.

In addition to passing a short-term fix, several Congressional leaders have reached an agreement on a framework for a full year—or omnibus—funding bill. The details of this agreement, however, have not been released.

For transportation construction contractors, whether Congress passes a full year funding bill or another continuing resolution (which would maintain existing FY 2022 levels of funding) would not significantly impact the investments provided under the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act (IIJA) as it did last year. Then, the lack of a full year, federal funding bill meant that states and local governments could not access a nearly 20 percent boost in new highway formula funding and 30 percent increase public transit funds available through the IIJA.

That will not be the case this time, as the second year of funding in the IIJA is a significantly smaller increase than that of the first year. Nevertheless, AGC fully supports enactment of a full year funding bill to realize the promises of the IIJA and because of its impact on direct federal construction contractors.

To that latter point, a full year funding bill would ensure that new, direct federal construction project starts—construction projects beginning in FY 2023—can move forward. Generally, continuing resolutions of any length prohibit new project starts.

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