Democrats hope to get bill to Obama before State of the Union in late January.
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White House confirms appointment of former Bush administration official Howard Schmidt, assures "regular access to the president."
Measure will be the last of the 12 annual appropriations bills to be enacted.
Suit charges that Interior mismanaged money owed to nearly 400,000 Indians from mining, grazing and drilling leases on tribal lands.
Vilsack says less cropland will be converted to forestland than report suggests.
Officials say intelligence and reconnaissance equipment will play a big role in Afghanistan mission.
Senators say they will not support increase of the national debt limit beyond $12.3 trillion without a plan to create a debt-reduction panel.
A favorable Congressional Budget Office score of a plan to allow OPM to negotiate rates with private insurers on behalf of a national plan would help lock down support.
$20 million blanket purchase agreement was awarded at the request of the Geospatial Line of Business, chaired by the Interior Department.
Officials assure lawmakers they have strategies to steer clear of the waste, fraud and abuse that plagued Iraq procurements.