2017 FISCAL YEAR MAY BE ONLY 6 MONTHS
A final appropriations measure for Fiscal Year 2017 may not come until March, according to experts familiar with the process. Instead of having a fiscal year, contractors and their federal customers would really have a fiscal “half-year”. Most federal agencies run out of money when the current Continuing Resolution expires December 9th. The unexpected outcome of the Presidential election, coupled with Republican retention of the House and Senate has made it increasingly likely that another CR would be passed that would provide funding into March. Congressional leaders are said to be opposed to such a long-term action, but their rank and file members may push for it and the incoming Administration may want a say in the details. Currently, the VA, military construction functions, and Congress itself are the only agencies that have full-year FY’17 appropriated money. The half-year outcome is bad for industry and government. Government leaders estimate that life under a CR costs them money by preventing needed programs from going forward. Contractors, too, can’t bid on new project starts that are funded with appropriated dollars until such money is actually appropriated. Despite that, a half-year fiscal year is looking likely. Prepare for a very busy Spring and Summer in the federal market.