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U.S. Department of State - Great Seal

U.S. Department of State

Diplomacy in Action

Guidance on Operations During a Lapse in Appropriations

September 27, 2013


The Department of State has developed an updated integrated reference guide concerning operations before and during a lapse in appropriations. (This supersedes the previous guidance issued December 16, 2011).

Please find the Department’s official guidance here: and

Departmental entities will continue to operate until their respective balances are insufficient to continue. While many appropriated funds expire after one year, the Department has some accounts that are 2-year funds or no-year funds.

If there is no appropriation or continuing resolution before October 1, 2013, Department elements using multi-year or no-year appropriations (with remaining available balances), trust funds, other permanent appropriations, and the Working Capital Fund will fund and continue operations as long as this funding is available.

The Department’s guidance has been split into two chapters to ensure clear operating instructions for a) a period of operations using residual balances (Chapter 1), and b) operations during a lapse in new appropriations (Chapter 2).

If there is no appropriation or continuing resolution before October 1, 2013, offices supported by single-year appropriations will immediately commence procedures detailed in Chapter 2 on October 1, 2013.

The Department will continue as many normal operations as possible; operating status and available funding will need to be monitored continuously and closely, and planning for a lapse in appropriations must be continued.


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