September 23, 2013
By Stephanie West
Washington, DC – H.J. Res 59 keeps funding through December 15th at a level of $986.3 billion that assumes a continuation of the across-the-board spending cuts known as sequestration. House Democrats oppose the $986 billion level as too low and both House and Senate Democrats solidly reject the attempt to defund Obamacare. President Obama has stated that he will veto this bill and it's a non-starter in the Senate.
With no clear end game in sight and days remaining in the current fiscal year, the White House instructed federal agencies to prepare for a government shutdown beginning October 1.
House GOP leaders announced their plan to introduce a bill tying a one-year extension of the debt ceiling to a one-year delay of Obamacare along with cuts to entitlement programs including Medicare, Medicaid, and Social Security. The GOP is also pushing for reduced tax rates for individuals and corporations.
House GOP leadership narrowly passed a bill to cut the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) program by about 5% per year and cutting about $40 billion over the next 10 years. According to the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) this legislation would deprive almost four million people of needed food assistance.
The U.S. Department of Labor has issued Wage and Hour Rule for Home Care Workers. In the past they have been denied basic federal minimum wage and overtime protections. This changed September 17, when the Department of Labor (DOL) announced a final rule extending the federal Fair Labor Standards Act's minimum wage and overtime protections to most of the nation's workers who provide essential home care assistance to elderly and people with disabilities. The final rule goes into effect January 2015.