Federal Relations


June 16, 2015

OMB Signals Concerns on House FY16 Interior Bill

Due to be marked up today, the White House signaled concerns to House Appropriators about their $30.2 billion FY16 Interior-Environment spending bill. Office of Management and Budget (OMB)  Director Shaun Donovan criticized the measure for the proposed cuts to the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) as well as riders to block implementation of various air and water rules. The…

June 11, 2015

House Passes FY16 Defense Appropriations Bill

Today, the House  approved the $578.6 billion FY15 Defense appropriations bill despite Democratic objections, both from the House and White House, to using the war accounts, known as the Overseas Contingency Operations fund, to bridge the gap between stringent BCA budget caps and the Pentagon’s spending request. The measure totals $800 million above the Administration’s request, thanks to…

Senate Moves to Attach Cyber Legislation to NDAA

On Wednesday, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) filed for cloture on a cybersecurity amendment, a move that would fold the threat-sharing information legislation into the annual defense policy bill, the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA). Senate Armed Services Chairman John McCain (R-AZ) received consent to modify an already pending amendment related to background checks for military…

Senate Appropriations Clears Defense, CJS and Leg Branch

The full Senate Appropriations Committee approved three bills now ready for consideration by the whole Senate. The FY16 Defense, Commerce-Justice-Science (CJS), and Legislative Affairs appropriations bills were all approved today. The the FY2016 Defense appropriations bill was approved on a bipartisan 27-3 vote. The bill recommends $489.1 billion in base funding and $86.8 billion in Overseas Contingency Operations funding,…

June 10, 2015

Senate Approps Subcommittee Passes CJS

The Senate Commerce, Justice, Science (CJS) Appropriations Subcommittee passed the Senate’s FY16 CJS appropriations bill this morning. The $51.1  billion draft advanced by unanimous consent and would provide $7.3 billion for the National Science Foundation (NSF), $5.4 billion for National Ocean and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), $18.3 billion for the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA), and…

June 8, 2015

House Approps to Mark Up FY16 Interior Bill

The House is expected to mark up the FY16 Interior Appropriations bill this Wednesday. This bill provides funding to the National Endowment of the Humanities and forestry programs among other items.

Defense Money Starts Moving

The Senate Defense Approps Subcommittee will mark up its spending bill tomorrow, and the full Senate Appropriations Committee is expected to take it up the measure on Thursday. Simultaneously, the Senate will start the week with debate on dozens of amendments to the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) which will be on the floor all week — the Senate is…

June 5, 2015

Senate Judiciary Approves PATENT Act, House Begins to Move on Innovation Act

Yesterday, the Senate Judiciary Committee approved the PATENT Act by a vote of 16 to 4, with only Senators Dick Durbin (D-IL), Chris Coons (D-DE), David Vitter (R-LA), and Ted Cruz (R-TX) voting against it. During consideration of the bill, the Committee approved an amendment offered by John Cornyn (R-TX) that alters the definition of micro-entity status…

June 3, 2015

House Passes CJS

Today, the House of Representatives passed HR 2578, the FY16  Commerce, Justice, Science bill by a vote of 242–183. Twelve Democrats voted for and ten Republicans voted against the $51.4 billion measure. The legislation had a host of amendments ranging from Cuba, bullets, immigration, to marijuana. Unfortunately, no amendments were offered on some of the most concerning provisions to the research community,…

June 1, 2015

House to Consider CJS

The House Rules will meet today to approve a rule for consideration of the FY2016 CJS Appropriations bill (H.R. 2578). The House will begin consideration of the bill beginning tomorrow at noon and possibly continuing through Thursday. As has been previously mentioned, the cuts to the measure and the report language accompanying the legislation have raised some…

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