Federal Relations

May 22, 2015

What We’re Reading This Week, May 18-22

Here’s a selection of articles the Federal Relations team has enjoyed this week. Home Office – Historically, some Representatives have given a new meeting to the term home office as many of them (up to a third) use their Congressional offices as their personal abodes during the Congressional work week. Recently, there has been a

May 21, 2015

Alexander and Murray Release HEA Working Groups

Today, HELP Chairman Lamar Alexander (R-TN) and Ranking Member Patty Murray (D-WA) announced several bipartisan, full committee staff working groups to address four major issues related to the reauthorization of the Higher Education Act. The working groups will examine the following topics: Accountability Accreditation College Affordability and Financial Aid Campus Sexual Assault and Safety Senators Alexander and

Senate Releases “COMPETES” Bill

On Wednesday afternoon, as the House was working on passing its version of America COMPETES, Senators Lamar Alexander (R-TN), Chris Coons (D-DE), Lisa Murkowski (R-AK), Maria Cantwell (D-WA), Corey Gardner (R-CO), Diane Feinstein (D-CA), and Martin Heinrich (D-NM) today introduced the energy portion of America COMPETES. To give some perspective of the heavy hitters sponsoring this

May 20, 2015

COMPETES Passes the House

After an interesting debate, the House narrowly passed HR 1806 – the America COMPETES Reauthorization of 2016 but a vote of 217-205. The bill was largely along party line vote with all Democrats and 23 Republicans voting against the measure. Earlier this week, the White House issued a veto threat. As previously discussed, the bill authorizes science

OMB Letter of Concern to House Appropriators about FY16 CJS

As this process gets ever more interesting, the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) Director Sean Donovan sent a letter to House Appropriations Committee’s Chairman Hal Rogers (R-KY) and Ranking Member Nita Lowey (D-NY) about the draft FY16 CJS Appropriations bill. The letter expressed strong concern on the funding levels for science and innovation due

May 19, 2015

FY16 House DOD and Senate E&W Appropriations Bills Released

House and Senate appropriators are in full swing working on the FY16 appropriations measures. House Appropriators released of a FY16 Defense appropriations measure that totals $578.6 billion. The bill, which the Subcommittee on Defense will mark up Wednesday, includes $88.4 billion for so-called Overseas Contingency Operations account. In total, the bill provides $578.6 billion in discretionary funding,

House CJS Report Filed

The House Appropriations Committee is expected to consider and mark up the FY16 Commerce, Justice, State bill on Wednesday morning. The Committee made the committee report public today for a more detailed look inside the thought process of the House Appropriations Committee.

COMPETES on the House Floor Wednesday

The House is set to consider HR 1806 – the America COMPETES Reauthorization Bill of 2015 on Wednesday. The rule allows for the consideration of two other bills,  HR 2353 – Highway and Transportation Funding Act of 2015 and HR 2250 – Legislative Branch Appropriations Act, 2016. Out of the 45 amendments filed, only 12 amendments were made in order.

This Week in Congress, May 18-22

There’s lots to keep an eye on in committee this week! We’re paying particularly close attention to the 21st Century Cures markup in House Energy & Commerce, the CJS markup in House Appropriations, and the Higher Education Act hearing in Senate HELP. As always, committee work can be live-streamed on each committee’s website and select

May 15, 2015

House Passes NDAA, SASC Releases Senate NDAA

After what was beginning to look like a tough vote for House Leadership, the House today passed the annual National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA). The bill authorizes military operations globally, sets defense policy, and offers a $612 billion spending blueprint for appropriators. Typically, the NDAA easily passes though the House with a wide margin of bipartisan support. The

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