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FCW : April 30, 2014
April 30, 2014 FCW.COM 17 Lawmakers have given agencies long-term funding clarity for the rst time in years. But the lack of budget drama could open the door to other con icts. BY RICHARD E. COHEN Cooperation from Congress --- or at least some helpful guidance --- would bene t many agencies as they face serious internal challenges. Instead, federal executives are often forced to cope with near-constant partisan clashes, gotcha-oriented oversight and other disruptive behavior. On Capitol Hill, even when the two parties manage to nd limited agreement, many insiders concede that dysfunction rules. So a glimmer of hope appeared last December when leaders of the Republican-controlled House and Democratic- controlled Senate overcame their persistent budget con icts and agreed to keep the government operating for the next two years. For the rst time since 2010, they reached consensus on federal spending levels. Government shutdowns would in all likelihood be avoided. Even the dreaded meat-ax budget sequester was suspended through 2015. The moment wasn t quite ripe for a chorus of "Happy Days Are Here Again," but President Barack Obama captured the spirit when he praised the deal. "This agreement doesn t include everything I d like --- and I know many Republicans feel the same way. That s the nature of compromise," he said in a Dec. 10 statement. "But it s a good sign that Democrats and Republicans in Congress were able to come together and break the cycle of short-sighted, crisis-driven decision- making to get this done." PHOTO BY AP IMAGES
April 15, 2014
May 15, 2014