Trump agreed to reopen the government for 3 weeks. Here's what comes next

By Kathryn Watson

/ CBS News

President Trump announced Friday he has agreed to fund and reopen the government for three weeks, teeing up an end to the longest shutdown in American history. But the president's announcement doesn't render government open.

The House and Senate must pass — and the president must sign — legislation to turn that proposal into reality. And the hundreds of thousands of federal employees going without pay won't be paid immediately, either. There's a process for that.

So, here's what comes next.

How this process to reopen government will go

The president has agreed to sign a three-week continuing resolution, meaning, legislation that funds the shuttered federal departments at current levels through Feb. 15. It's now up to Capitol Hill to deal with the legislative, technical details. But Senate leaders say they're ready.

Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, speaking on the Senate floor, said the longest shutdown will end "today."

"We expect the continuing resolution to clear the House and be signed by the president today," Schumer said.

The legislation to fund federal agencies is expected to pass both the House and the Senate, now that the president has backed the proposal. Democrats' attempts to reopen the government for two weeks failed on Thursday because at the time, that idea lacked the president's support.

A House Democratic aide said the House is expected to pass the continuing resolution by unanimous consent, and they're still working on how they will work on creating a joint House and Senate conference committee for DHS negotiations.

If that all happens as planned, thousands of federal workers would return on Monday, if not sooner. Less clear is how long it would take for things like museums to reopen.

When federal workers will get paid

The short answer to how long it will take for federal workers to get paid is, it's not entirely clear just yet, and it may depend on the agency.

The president said federal workers will get back pay "quickly or as soon as possible." He has already signed legislation to give back pay to furloughed or forced toe work without pay.

Sen. Susan Collins, a Maine Republican, said she expects federal employees to receive paychecks next week.

An official with the National Federation of Federal Employees said it "depends on the agency, really." Workers just missed checks Friday, and the next cycle won't be completed until two weeks from now. Ideally, however, agencies will immediately begin issuing back pay. It's unclear when exactly that back pay will show up.

The American Federation for Government Employees told CBS News that, if appropriations are enacted Friday or early next weeks, and agencies are shared-service providers agree to do a special out-of-cycle run, then paychecks could be delivered in a minimum of three days. But if they do not do an out-of-cycle payroll run, checks would not be issued until the next pay day after agencies reopen.

The next scheduled paycheck for most federal workers is Feb. 8. That is the latest they would receive their first pay check of 2019.

The Coast Guard, which is on a different pay schedule for active duty personnel, said it will take three to five days to get paychecks processed once a continuing resolution is signed.

— CBS News' Nancy Cordes, Nikole Killion, Andres Triay and Bo Erickson contributed to this report

First published on January 25, 2019

© 2019 CBS Interactive Inc. All Rights Reserved.

Kathryn Watson

Kathryn Watson is a politics reporter for CBS News Digital.

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