Federal Relations

May 1, 2015

Two Down…10 To Go

Yesterday the House passed the first appropriations vote of the season. The FY16 Military Construction and Veterans Affairs (HR 2029) passed with a vote of 255 – 163, largely along party lines. Known colloquially as MilCon-VA, the measure is historically the least controversial of all the 12 annual appropriations bills. It passed last year with the support of every

What We’re Reading, April 27- May 1

Here’s a selection of articles the Federal Relations team found of interest. Refueling Research – An op-ed by Senator Ed Markey about the value of basic science and federal investment. Read more at the Huffington Post.  IX – ED released a new packet of info for Title IX coordinators. First instruction, don’t forget to designate

April 30, 2015

House Passes Conference Committee Budget

The House of Representatives approved the FY16 budget resolution conference report (SConRes 11) with a vote of 226-197, sending the measure to the Senate for final approval. The measure provides overall guidance for spending but is not signed into law by the President. The FY16 agreement follows the spending caps enacted in the Budget Control Act for both defense

More Books! Initiatives from the White House and Rep. Suzan DelBene

Today, President Barack Obama announced that major and independent book publishers are making 10,000 of their most popular titles available for free for low-income students through e-books, and effort estimated to be worth about $250 million. Obama said the devices will play a big part and a gap in access between low-income students and their peers still

FY16 Budget Conference Committee Resolution

Late yesterday, House and Senate conferees released SConRes 21 – the Budget Resolution for FY 2016, which is the conference agreement for the FY16 Budget. As a reminder, the Conferenced budget is not law. While it is not signed by the President, the measure does bind the House and Senate on policy and spending directives for


The House Armed Services Committee once again got its annual National Defense Authorization Act over the finish line this morning. Chairman Mac Thornberry (R-Texas) gaveled down at 4:39 a.m. after the panel voted 60-2 to approve the bill and 18 hours after the markup started. Over the course of the session, the panel considered roughly seven

April 29, 2015

Senate Judiciary Releases Patent Bill

Today, the Senate Judiciary Committee has released their long-awaited version of patent legislation. The House has promoted several bills, namely the Innovation Act,  over the last few years, including this year. The text of the Protecting American Talent and Entrepreneurship Act (PATENT Act) has yet to be released, but purportedly the measure would simply pleadings,

House Marks up NDAA TODAY

The House Armed Services Committee (HASC) is going through its annual ritual of marking up the latest version of the FY16 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA), which sets defense policy and offers a spending blueprint for appropriators. The marathon markup starts at 10 a.m. and in some years has continued until well past midnight. The

21st Century Cures Draft Provides $10 Billion Increase for NIH

Bipartisan House Energy and Commerce Committee leaders have released a discussion draft marking continued progress in the 21st Century Cures Initiative. The discussion draft is the product of months of bipartisan negotiations and bipartisan staff continues working toward finalized legislation. The biggest and best provision included in the draft provides for an increase in funding

April 28, 2015

White House Issues Veto Threat on Two House Apropriations Bills

Today, the White House issued a veto threat on two recently marked up House Appropriations bills.  HR 2028 — Energy and Water Development and Related Agencies Appropriations Act, 2016 and HR 2029 – Military Construction and Veterans Affairs, and Related Agencies Appropriations Act, 2016. The White House on Tuesday threatened to veto the FY16 Energy and

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