Congress passes bill to avoid shutdown: Here's what it includes

President Trump is poised to sign a $333 billion bipartisan spending bill on Friday – already approved by Congress – to fund several key federal agencies, punting any chance of another partial-government shutdown until October.

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After weeks of negotiations, congressional leaders agreed this week to a spending measure for the Department of Homeland Security that includes $1.375 billion for a physical barrier along the U.S.-Mexico border.

It also includes spending measures for seven less controversial agencies: Agriculture, Commerce, Justice, Interior, State, Transportation and Housing and Urban Development.

Notably, the spending bill does not include back pay for federal contractors who weren’t receiving paychecks as a result of the longest government shutdown in U.S. history. Although Democrats and some Republicans pushed for that to be included, the White House has been reluctant to pay contractors -- generally custodial and service workers -- for work they didn’t do.

The 1,159-page document was released late Wednesday night. Here’s a closer look at what it includes.

Border security: It includes $1.375 billion for “primary pedestrian fencing” along the Southern border – a fraction of the $5.7 billion Trump initially demanded. However, it limits the type of border wall designs that the Trump administration has previously explored, meaning Trump won’t be allowed to use the prototypes previously built.

The bill would also fund a yearly average of 45,275 detention beds, according to Politico, a 12 percent increase over the levels funded in last year’s bill (Democrats disputed that number).

Also included in the bill is the allocation of $414 million to address humanitarian concerns at the border -- a push by Democrats -- and $77 million to counter opioids and $564 million for land port-of-entry drug and contraband inspection equipment.

Infrastructure: One of the major domestic priorities secured in the bill includes a $1.2 billion increase for infrastructure spending. That breaks down to about $725 million for highway and bridges; $300 million for a new port infrastructure program; and $150 million for bus and rail improvements.


Census funding: The funding measure also secured a $1 billion increase in funding for the 2020 U.S. Census.

Federal pay raise: The spending bill mandates a 1.9 percent pay increase for the federal workforce, reversing a pay freeze initiated by the Trump administration last year. Senate Democrats and Republicans negotiated the same level last year, according to The Washington Post. (House Democrats initially pushed for a 2.6 percent raise).