WASHINGTON, August 2, 2012 -In a concession to the difficulties of achieving political consensus during a presidential election year, congressional leaders from both parties reached a deal with the White House to continue funding the federal government through March 2013 at levels established in last year’s deal addressing the national debt.

This latest compromise comes with the likelihood that there will be no policy riders, such as those in House and Senate appropriations measures restricting EPA and Department of Energy policies.

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., and House Speaker John Boehner, R-Ohio, announced the policy pact Tuesday afternoon, leaving funding for federal agencies at an annual rate of $1.047 trillion, at least for the first six months of fiscal 2013. The amount was set by an August 2011 deal to raise the debt limit.

“This agreement reached between the Senate, the House and the White House provides stability for the coming months, when we will have to resolve critical issues that directly affect middle class families,” Reid said in a statement released by his office on the deal.

The six-month “continuing resolution,” or CR, will likely face a vote in both the House and Senate after lawmakers return from their August recess, but before the fiscal year ends Sept. 30.

Boehner said the spending agreement offers members and their staff the opportunity to “write legislation that can be passed by the House and Senate” during the coming four-week recess.


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