Federal Relations

November 21, 2011

Deficit Committee Failure Likely

After a long weekend of negotiations and finger pointing, members of the Joint Select Committee on Deficit Reduction are all but ready to admit failure.  They will continue to work through the day Monday, but it appears unlikely that the eleventh-hour negotiations will yield a budget agreement before the deadline later tonight.  The barriers to

November 17, 2011

Today in Congress

The House begins work at 10:00 am.  They plan to debate and hold votes in the afternoon on a constitutional balanced budget amendment, and the first minibus appropriations bill for the Departments of Agriculture, Commerce- Justice-Science, and Transportation-HUD.  This measure also contains a new continuing resolution (CR) to extend through December 16th.  The Senate will

November 15, 2011

First Conference Report for FY12

The House will vote this week on the final conference report on the FY12 Agriculture, Commerce/Justice/Science (CJS), and Transportation/Housing and Urban Development (THUD) Appropriations bill – also known as the “Mini-bus” (House Report 112-284). The package also contains a Continuing Resolution (CR) to avoid a government shutdown and continue federal operations until December 16, 2011

November 14, 2011

This Week in Washington DC

Happy Monday morning!  It will be a busy week in Washington, DC with the continuing resolution (CR) expiring on Friday, appropriators scrambling to approve at least one “mini-bus” before week’s end, the Joint Deficit Reduction Committee deadline looming next week, the House taking action on a balanced budget amendment, and Obama announcing the next phase

November 8, 2011

Senate, House Resolutions Recognize UW 150th

Resolutions were introduced in both the House and the Senate (H.Res.458 and S.Res.313) recognizing the UW’s 150th year and its’ contributions to Washington state and the nation. The Senate resolution – introduced by Senator Cantwell and cosponsored by Senator Murray, passed the chamber this morning by unanimous consent. The House Resolution was introduced by Congressman

November 2, 2011

Senate Approves First FY12 “Minibus”

By a vote of 69 to 30, the Senate yesterday approved an FY12 appropriations “minibus,” which includes three of the twelve FY12 appropriations bills: Agriculture, Transportation-Housing, and Commerce-Justice-Science. It appears that in the process of approving several amendments to the first FY12 appropriations minibus, the Senate did not make any changes to funding levels approved

October 27, 2011

FY12 Appropriations and Super Committee Work

The Office of Federal Relations Team is not making any holiday plans – for now – as it now looks like Congress won’t wrap up annual appropriations work nor consider recommendations for long-term deficit until just before Christmas. House appropriators may try to expedite completion of overdue FY12 appropriations bills by adding one or two

October 26, 2011

President Obama Announces New ‘Know Before You Owe’ Student Loan Initiative

President Obama announced today at a speech at the University of Colorado Denver, a new initiative called ‘Know Before You Owe’ designed to make college loans more affordable and reduce the financial burden on recent graduates – many of whom are struggling to find employment. The administration is essentially speeding up by 2 years, a

October 19, 2011

NIH Considers Options for Cuts

As described in this Science Insider article, NIH has begun to reach out to the community for feedback on what strategies should be considered during an era of reduced budgets. Everything seems to be on the table, from limiting numbers or grants per investigator to capping salaries charged to grants. NIH has put together a

October 17, 2011

Minibus vs. Omnibus

While the House is in recess this week, the Senate will continue working on FY12 appropriations measures in an effort to create a path forward on completing those bills before the continuing resolution (CR) expires on November 18th.  Later today, the Senate will test the waters with a “minibus,” which would include three spending bills

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