The Senate is expected to vote on the $717 billion final version of the fiscal year 2019 defense policy bill on Thursday, while leadership is planning to meet Wednesday to discuss bringing its defense appropriations bill for a floor vote in the coming weeks.

Sen. Richard Shelby (R-Ala.), chairman of the Senate Appropriations Committee, told Defense Daily he is meeting with Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) to discuss bringing the $675 billion defense appropriations bill for a vote while noting that detailed discussions were still ongoing.CAPITOL

“I’m meeting with the leader tomorrow. But we’re hoping to bring it up at the end of this week, possibly. But when we get back, for sure,” Shelby said. “We’re moving along. We’re making progress, but we’ve got a long way to go.”

Shelby’s committee approved the defense appropriations bill on June 28 (Defense Daily, June 28). The House passed its version of the defense appropriations bill on June 28 as well.

The Senate has a planned brief recess next week, but will be back in session the following week.

Sen. Jim Inhofe (R-Okla.), who led Senate negotiations with the House on the NDAA, told Defense Daily that a vote on the NDAA will take place Thursday.

McConnell filed a motion to move to cloture on the negotiated version of the next National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA), which senators must approve before moving to a full vote this week.

The House on July 26 voted 359-54 to pass the FY 19 NDAA conference report (Defense Daily, July 26).