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House Passes First Attempt at Continuing Resolution

Today the U.S. House passed a continuing resolution (CR) to continue funding government at FY 2013 levels through December 15. The CR, which passed by a party-line 230-189 vote, would defund the President's health reform efforts. The Senate is likely to pass its own version of the CR that prevents this defunding, and the Senate version would then have to go back to the House for further consideration. It's not clear how the House would proceed at that point, though continued negotiations are likely. Failure to pass a CR would lead to a government shutdown October 1, the end of the fiscal year. As is typical, the CR prevents any new projects from being initiated by federal agencies that didn't receive funding for the project in FY 2013. Science-relevant provisions include language to keep NOAA's Joint Polar Satellite System and the Geostationary Operational Environmental Satellite system on their respective project schedules, and language to allow the transfer of funds to support the Department of Health and Human Services' Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority, which deals with public health emergencies in the case of emerging diseases and pandemics.