Deal Averts Government Shutdown Congress forges $1T spending deal By Rob Quinn, Newser Staff Posted Dec 15, 2011 11:31 PM CST Updated Dec 16, 2011 12:23 AM CST 9 comments Comments With a spending deal reached, Harry Reid may get to go home for Christmas. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite) (Newser) – The spirit of Christmas, or at least the spirit of competence, appears to have reached Capitol Hill. Lawmakers have set aside their differences to forge a $1 trillion spending bill for federal agencies that will avert a government shutdown this weekend, the Washington Post reports. The bill—heralded by a break in hostilities—is expected to hit the House and Senate floors today. Lawmakers are also said to be making progress toward a payroll tax cut deal. In the spending bill, the White House won concessions, including funding for financial industry oversight and the axing of a plan to reinstate Bush-era travel restrictions to Cuba, Politico reports. The bill cuts $233 million from Environmental Protection Agency funding, and slices funding for Obama's Race to the Top public school program by 21% to $550 million. Pentagon funding will rise by $5.1 billion.