Federal Relations

On the Hill


June 24, 2015

House Committee Passes FY16 Labor-H

The House Appropriations Committee passed it’s FY16 Labor-H bill by a vote of 30-21. The passage came after hours of debate during which Democrats bitterly criticized funding levels for domestic discretionary accounts and saw a series of their amendments defeated. The bill is $3.7 billion below fiscal 2015 enacted levels and $14.6 billion below President Barack Obama’s…


White House Issues Veto Threat on House’s FY16 House Interior and OMB Letter on FY16 Labor-H Appropriations Bill

As discussed yesterday, the House’s FY16 Interior appropriations bill contained significant cuts and policy riders which would be of serious concern to the White House. Accordingly, the White House has issued a Statement of Administrative Policy (SAP) about the House’s draft bill, which includes a veto threat. Additionally, the OMB Director Donovan wrote a letter on the House’s…


June 23, 2015

House to Consider FY16 Interior Bill

The House is expected to consider their FY16 Interior-Enviornment Appropriations bill for the bulk of this week. The $30.2 billion Interior-Environment spending bill will take center stage as the House is scheduled to consider the controversial measure on the Floor, possibly for long hours with many amendments. The typically contentions bill is particularly so this year…


More Details on House FY16 Labor-H

The House Appropriations Committee posted the committee report to their FY16 Labor, HHS, and Education (Labor-H) appropriations bill today giving additional insight to the legislation passed earlier last week. The bill provides a new maximum Pell award of $5,915 but discretionary funding is down $370 million. They take this money from the current surplus. The committee report states (page 133):…


June 18, 2015

Senate Passes NDAA, but FY16 Defense Funding Stalls

The Senate passed the unusually contentious FY16 NDAA, by a vote of 71-25, today. The Senate had planned to move ahead to tackling Defense Appropriations on the Floor, but the measure failed to receive 60 votes needed to invoke cloture and proceed.  As a reminder, the President has issued a veto threat on the bill and Senate Democrats have promised to…


FY2016 Labor-HHS Bill Moves Through Subcommittee

The House Labor-HHS-Education Appropriations Subcommittee approved its FY2016 spending bill by voice vote, with all Democrats voting against the proposal. The panel earlier had rejected a dozen amendments in a series of voice votes, with partisan splits apparent over family planning and the implementation of the 2010 health law. However, members of both parties made…


June 11, 2015

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…


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…


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…



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