Oct. 31 (UPI) -- The Senate on Thursday passed a package of four spending bills, the first step in an effort to avoid another government shutdown over funding to pay for President Donald Trump's border wall.
Senators voted 84-9 in favor of the package, which provides $332 billion in spending for the Agriculture, Interior, Commerce, Justice, Transportation, and Housing and Urban Development departments.
Senate Democratic leader Charles Schumer of New York praised the bipartisan support the bills received.
"Democrats and Republicans have been working through a package of appropriation bills. As is clear, the bills we are voting on, where there's agreement, we can move forward," he said.
"This week has shown the Senate can efficiently work through these bills when we have a bipartisan buy-in."
The money is the first for fiscal year 2020 approved by the Senate and leaves eight spending bills yet to be passed. The fiscal year began at the beginning of October.
There's concern the Senate may not come to agreements on the rest of the spending bills due to a hang-up that shut down the government earlier this year -- spending for Trump's border wall. Senate appropriations committee Chairman Richard Shelby, R-Ala., said lawmakers may need to pass a stopgap spending bill to avoid another shutdown.
"Unless a miracle happens around here with the House and the Senate, we will have to come forth with another [continuing resolution]," he said.
Politico reported lawmakers hope to have all remaining appropriations bills passed by the end of 2019.