Last week was a slow legislative week as the Senate was in recess while the House of Representatives returned to pass a debt ceiling bill. By doing so, Congress avoided the first federal default in U.S. history, but the Senate-passed bill only allows an increase of the debt ceiling until approximately December 3, 2021, although that date to reach the new ceiling could easily slip to a later date. December 3, FY 2022, is also the same date that the continuing resolution (CR) appropriations will run out if the Congress does not pass 12 appropriations bills.


The House rule that included the debt ceiling increase also allowed a combined House vote on several other measures including H.R. 2119, a reauthorization of the Family Violence Prevention and Services Act (FVPSA). Generally, FVPSA, in the past, has been bundled with the CAPTA reauthorization (and the Adoption Opportunities Act) but this year neither version of a CAPTA reauthorization includes the FVPSA reauthorization.  Both CAPTA bills are pending further action with the House passing their version (HR485) on March 16, 2021 and the Senate passing its version out of the Senate HELP Committee (S. 1927) on June 10, 2021 but those bills may wait for further discussion between the key House and Senate Committees. With one House acting on FVPSA, it could be included in a future CAPTA reauthorization which awaits post-reconciliation attention.