Weekly Legislative Update

June 19, 2023

Congressional Outlook

The House and Senate are in session this week before a two-week recess for the July 4th holiday. 


The Senate will begin working on the upper chamber’s appropriations process for Fiscal Year (FY) 2024. The process starts with deciding the total funding amounts that each of the 12 subcommittees will receive (known as 302(b) allocations). Following a decision on allocations, many expect the Senate to follow the guidance of the bipartisan debt ceiling deal through the Fiscal Responsibility Act of 2023. The Agriculture, Rural Development, Food and Drug Administration, and Military Construction and Veterans Affairs bills will be marked up first.

 

The House Appropriations Committee will mark up the Homeland Security and the Legislative Branch Appropriations bills on Wednesday, and the Defense and Energy-Water will receive a full committee markup on Thursday. The Financial Services appropriations subcommittee will mark up its spending bill on Thursday. House Republicans have reduced government funding by $130 billion, with the Financial Services bill receiving a 59 percent decrease for FY 2024. Notably, the House set its appropriations levels below the agreed-upon debt limit deal; this discrepancy will remain a sticking point for Congress as it could head toward a potential government shutdown if negotiations stall before the September 30 deadline.

 

Also, this week, the Senate will vote on several judicial nominations, including Natasha Merle as United States District Judge for the Eastern District of New York and Julie Rikelman as United States Circuit Judge for the First Circuit. 

 

This Farm Bill will take the stage as another key issue for Congress to address. Of note, House Agriculture Committee staff have begun writing the 2023 Farm Bill, with negotiations around the text expected to begin in earnest following the July 4th recess. The House version of the legislation will most likely be marked up in early September (the week of September 11 at the earliest), leaving minimal time to reconcile the bill with the Senate before the September 30 deadline for many farm bill authorizations. Congress has the option to apply short-term extensions to some of those expiring provisions. Additionally, the House and Senate Armed Services Committees will begin full committee markups of the National Defense Authorization Act on Wednesday. 

 

For the remainder of the week, the House will hold several hearings, including an Oversight and Accountability Committee hearing on the “Clearing the Air: Examining the Environmental Protection Agency’s Proposed Emissions Standards” and an Agriculture Committee hearing on “Stakeholder Perspectives on USDA’s Rural Development Programs.” In the Senate, the Environment and Public Works Committee will hold a hearing on “Reauthorization of the Economic Development Administration: State and Local Perspectives.”


Bills and Regulations of Interest to You

Bill

Title

Sponsors

Background

S. 1995

Public Health Infrastructure Saves Lives Act

Sen. Patty Murray (D-WA)

Establishes $4.5 billion in dedicated, annual funding for a grant program to build up and maintain the nation’s public health system across the board.

S. 1988

Volunteer First Responder Housing Act

Sen. Tammy Baldwin (D-WI)

Expands eligibility for certain housing programs for qualified volunteer first responders.

S. 1930

Legislation to Improve Access to Clean Buses for Rural Communities

Sen. Ben Ray Lujan (D-NM)

Expands rural communities’ access to clean school buses by supporting the installation of the infrastructure needed to support rural schools’ clean bus fleets.

H.R. 4088 & S. 1991

Comprehensive Addiction Recovery through Effective Employment and Reentry (CAREER) Act of 2023

Rep. Andy Barr (R-KY-6) & Sen. Mitch McConnell (R-KY)

Reauthorizes and makes improvements to much-needed federal programs for individuals in states most devastated by substance abuse.

H.R. 4098

Communities of Recovery Act

Rep. Brittany Pettersen (D-CO-7)

Increases the prevalence and quality of long-term recovery support for individuals with substance use disorders and associated mental health disorders.

Agency

Title

Proposed Regulation

Comment Deadline

FAA

Noise Policy Review

The FAA is reviewing our noise policy as part of our ongoing commitment to address aircraft noise.

July 31, 2023

Council on Environmental Quality

Ocean Justice Strategy


Proposes equitable and just practices to advance safety, health, and prosperity for communities residing near the ocean, the coasts, and the Great Lakes and for the whole country, now and for future generations.

July 24, 2023

EPA

Recycling Infrastructure & Market Opportunities

Develops an interactive map of recycling markets visually presenting data estimates.

June 26, 2023

FEMA

Community Disaster Resilience Zones and the National Risk Index

FEMA is reviewing the input on implementation of Community Disaster Resilience Zones Act of 2022 for potential improvements to FEMA’s resilience zones.

July 25, 2023

DOT

Department of Transportation Equity Action Plan Update

The Office of the Secretary of Transportation invites public comment regarding how DOT’s work to advance equity has impacted organizations and communities, as well as input on performance metrics, data sets, tools, and research to measure and advance transportation equity.

June 30, 2023

EPA

Preventing Plastic Pollution

The EPA attempts to provide innovative approaches necessary to reduce and recover plastic materials and improve economic, social, and environmental impacts.

July 31, 2023 (Extended from original June 16)

Week in Review

Far-right Republicans threaten to derail another House priority


Battle over parties’ share of earmarks erupts in House panel