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By Nick Wakeman

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Nick Wakeman

Budget deal brings sigh of relief

It looks like Congress and the White House have finally done their jobs and compromised their way to a two-year budget deal that averts a December shutdown of the government and extends the debt ceiling out until after the 2016 elections.

Along the way, they have increased spending for both civilian and defense programs by $80 billion, not including $32 billion of the overseas contingency fund. The agreement, if it passes, also brings “sequester cap relief” as the White House calls it.

The increases are about 1 percent of the total $4 trillion annual federal budget.

But forget the numbers – they are so large and unwieldy that they are practically meaningless. What is important is the stability and predictability a budget deal brings to federal agencies, government contractors and the overall economy.

Congress and the White House finally look like adults and look like they are governing.

The New York Times reported that the deal allows the Obama Administration to avoid budget battles over the remainder of his second term. It also means that Rep. Paul Ryan can become speaker of the House with a clean slate. 

Outgoing speaker, John Boehner, has made good on his promise to “clean the barn” before he leaves at the end of this month.

The threat of a government shutdown has hung over the contracting industry for several months, though there hasn’t been the sense of dread and despair that gripped the industry in 2013.

There were a lot of lessons learned from 2013 so government agencies and contractors came into this now averted budget crisis better prepared.

The political pain of 2013 also gave many confidence that Congress and the White House would get their act together in time.

It seems that prevailing wisdom had held true. We’ve pulled back from the brink at until after the 2016 elections.

Posted by Nick Wakeman on Oct 27, 2015 at 1:30 PM


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