Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Capitol Hill This Week - What to Watch For

Under Construction
Yes, they're back. After seven weeks off to make their cases for reelection, members of Congress will return to work today (Wednesday), and almost immediately start to work in earnest crafting a spending bill to keep the Federal government operating beyond December 11: the date that the current, stop gap continuing resolution expires. Both the Senate (Sen. Barb Mikulski) and House (Rep. Hal Rogers) Appropriation Committee chairs would like to see an omnibus (i.e., "package") spending bill incorporate the negotiated elements of the separate appropriations measures already drafted by their respective committees.

Elsewhere on Capitol Hill this week related to the Mississippi River Basin, the full House is scheduled to consider H.R. 5266, a bill to reauthorize the National Estuary Programs, an EPA program to protect and restore the water quality and ecological integrity of estuaries of national significance, including the Barataria-Terrebonne National Estuary complex, encompassing 4.2 million acres of wetlands, ridges, forests, farmlands, and communities, including New Orleans and Baton Rouge, between the Mississippi River and Atchafalaya River in southeastern Louisiana.

Presently, there is only one committee activity scheduled for the week that is River Basin natural resource-related.  Below is the link to the relevant committee web page, and to associated pieces of legislation. Many Congressional proceedings are webcast live, and this should be, as well (follow the appropriate link). This page will be updated as warranted.

  • Senate Committee on Energy and Natural Resources Business Meeting to consider several bills, including S. 1971, to establish an interagency coordination committee or subcommittee with the leadership of the Departments of Energy and the Interior, focused on the nexus between energy and water production, use, and efficiency; and S. 1966, the National Forest Jobs and Management Act of 2014, to provide for the restoration of the economic and ecological health of National Forest System land and rural communities (with respect to Forest Management Emphasis Areas); 3:00 PM EDT, Room 366 Dirksen Senate Office Building.

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