Quick Hit – October 17, 2014

CI previously reported that control of the Senate will substantially impact what’s possible during the upcoming Lame Duck session of Congress. Election results will not be fully known on election day. Several key races will require run-off and recount actions to determine the winner.

We should see action on these key issues during the Lame Duck session:

  • Continuing Resolution. The current CR runs through Dec 15th. Look for it to be extended into March 2015. It will simply make more sense to buy time.
    • Companies waiting for FY15 funds need to be especially close to their government customer and remain hyper-focused on program execution. Unobligated balances are now a relic of the past – they get swept up fast !
    • Of note, programs funded via OCO continue to be winners in the interim. FY14 OCO was funded at $85B, $27B above the $58B FY15 request. As long as we have a CR, the higher number ($85B) stands.
  • ISIL strategy. Authorization beyond the training and equipping of Syrian rebels authorized in September.
  • Ebola response. Some degree of supplemental funding will be directed. See CR above as the likely vehicle.
  • National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA). While the ISIL strategy discussion could slow the bill’s progress, look for this bill to pass and be enacted.

The Podesta Group recently published an interesting summary of likely changes in Senate committee chairmanships and ranking member positions when the 114th Congress is seated in January. See it here!

A change to sequestration still looms on the horizon. Sequester in FY16 will likely be a forcing function to another interim budget deal during calendar 2015. It’s likely that short-term deals will continue to be required until the 2016 elections.


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