Fiscal 2014 Omnibus Spending Bill Unveiled

Lawmakers on Monday released the Fiscal 2014 omnibus appropriations bill, the legislation that would provide discretionary funding for the federal government for the remainder of the fiscal year and supersede the continuing resolution that expires on Jan. 15. Among the 12 regular appropriations bills included in the $1.012 trillion spending package is defense legislation that allocates $486.9 billion for base defense activities and $85.2 billion for overseas contingency operations, according to the House Appropriations Committee’s defense summary. “This meets spending caps set in the Ryan-Murray budget agreement and denies the extreme cuts that would have occurred under the next round of sequestration, which would have had dire repercussions for our national defense,” states the summary. The defense funding supports “a high level of military readiness,” states the summary. The omnibus would also partially rescind language in the 2013 Bipartisan Budget Act that reduced military retiree benefits. It would “exempt medically retired personnel and survivor benefit plan recipients from having their cost-of-living benefits temporarily reduced,” states the summary. “This will ensure disabled veterans and surviving families receive the full benefits they are due,” it states. (See Rogers release, Mikulski release, Senate bill summary.) (See also Triggering Another Sequester.)