The House and Senate last week approved legislation to fund federal programs, including those in the U.S. Department of Transportation, through December 11.  The measure was needed because FY 2015 will begin October 1 and none of the 12 annual appropriations bills to fund individual federal agencies have been finalized.  Congress had long planned to adjourn mid-September to allow members to campaign for election.  The bill provides largely current levels of investment for all programs—it does impose a .05 percent across-the-board cut to comply with overall spending requirements for FY 2014.  Congress is expected to revisit the FY 2015 funding bills during a post-election “lame duck” session and will decide at that time whether it will finalize FY 2015 funding levels or pass another short-term measure to continue funding into next year.