PublicationsInsights on Current Policy Issues

  • April 19, 2018

    By David E. Franasiak, Joel G. Oswald, Michael D. Kans, and Rebecca L. Konst

     This memorandum will provide a survey of federal action on cryptocurrencies (aka virtual currencies), including enforcement and guidance. At present, some federal regulators have begun asserting oversight and enforcement authority under their existing powers while other potential regulators have not yet indicated publicly what, if any, oversight they will exercise. Other federal stakeholders on cryptocurrencies have also begun to engage. However, the U.S. government’s approach to virtual currencies remains fluid.

     

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  • February 5, 2018

    By David E. Franasiak, Joel G. Oswald, Michael D. Kans, and Rebecca L. Konst

     This memorandum will provide a survey of federal action on cryptocurrencies (aka virtual currencies), including enforcement and guidance. At present, some federal regulators have begun asserting oversight and enforcement authority under their existing powers while other potential regulators have not yet indicated publicly what, if any, oversight they will exercise. Other federal stakeholders on cryptocurrencies have also begun to engage. However, the U.S. government’s approach to virtual currencies remains fluid.

     

    Read...

    Read More
  • January 11, 2018

    By Frank Vlossak

    Since taking office, President Trump and his Administration have worked toward regulatory reform that includes the review, revision, and repeal of existing regulations, with a focus on rules promulgated by the Obama Administration. Congress has played a key role in this effort, through the use of the Congressional Review Act to repeal rules finalized in the waning months of the prior Administration, as well as one rule issued by the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) in 2017.

    President Trump signed a series of executive orders in the early months of his presidency that are propelling the deregulatory efforts of federal agencies. These executive orders: set a cap limiting regulations in Fiscal Year 2017 to zero net cost; provide agencies with a framework for limiting new regulations and identifying existing rules to repeal or revise; direct review and revision or repeal of the “Waters of the United States” rule issued by the Obama Administration; and require review and reform of energy and climate-related regulations.

     

    Read...

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The House will consider H.J.Res. 2 – Proposing a balanced budget amendment to the Constitution of the United States. The Senate will resume consideration of Patrick Pizzella, to be Deputy Secretary of Labor.

THE HOUSE

 

Yesterday

  • Volcker Rule Regulatory Harmonization Act--Rule for Consideration:
    • The House agreed to H. Res. 811, providing for consideration of the bill (H.R. 4790) to amend the Volcker rule to give the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System sole rulemaking authority, to exclude community banks from the requirements of the Volcker rule, by a recorded vote of 230 ayes to 184 noes, Roll No. 134, after the previous question was ordered by a yea-and-nay vote of 231 yeas to 186 nays, Roll No. 133.
  • Committee Election:
    • The House agreed to H. Res. 816, electing a Member to a certain standing committee of the House of Representatives.
  • Financial Stability Oversight Council Improvement Act:
    • The House passed H.R. 4061, to amend the Financial Stability Act of 2010 to improve the transparency of the Financial Stability Oversight Council, to improve the SIFI designation process, by a yea-and-nay vote of 297 yeas to 121 nays, Roll No. 135.
  • Pursuant to the Rule, an amendment in the nature of a substitute consisting of the text of Rules Committee Print 115–64, modified by the amendment printed in part A of H. Rept. 115–600, shall be considered as adopted.
  • H. Res. 780, the rule providing for consideration of the bills (H.R. 4061) and (H.R. 4293) was agreed to March 15th.
  • Stress Test Improvement Act:
    • The House passed H.R. 4293, to reform the Comprehensive Capital Analysis and Review process, the Dodd-Frank Act Stress Test process, by a yea-and-nay vote of 245 yeas to 174 nays, Roll No. 137.
  • Rejected the Maxine Waters (CA) motion to recommit the bill to the Committee on Financial Services with instructions to report the same back to the House forthwith with an amendment, by a yea-and-nay vote of 188 yeas to 231 nays, Roll No. 136.
  • Pursuant to the Rule, an amendment in the nature of a substitute consisting of the text of Rules Committee Print 115–63, modified by the amendment printed in part B of H. Rept. 115–600, shall be considered as adopted, in lieu of the amendment in the nature of a substitute recommended by the Committee on Financial Services now printed in the bill.
  • H. Res. 780, the rule providing for consideration of the bills (H.R. 4061) and (H.R. 4293) was agreed to March 15th.

 

Today

  • On Thursday, the House will meet at 10:00 a.m. for morning hour and 12:00 p.m. for legislative business. First and last votes expected: 5:00 p.m. – 6:00 p.m.
  • Legislation Considered Under Suspension of the Rules:
    • 1) H.J.Res. 2 – Proposing a balanced budget amendment to the Constitution of the United States (Four Hours of Debate) (Sponsored by Rep. Bob Goodlatte / Judiciary Committee)

 

THE SENATE

 

Yesterday

  • Measures Passed:
    • Oswaldo Paya Sardinas: Senate agreed to S. Res. 224, recognizing the 6th anniversary of the death of Oswaldo Paya Sardinas, and commemorating his legacy and commitment to democratic values and principles, after agreeing to the committee amendments.
    • Authorizing Representation by Senate Legal Counsel: Senate agreed to S. Res. 457, to authorize testimony and representation in Kuwait and Gulf Link Transport Co., et al. v. John Doe, et al. (Ct. of Common Pleas, Cumberland County, Pa.) Page S2079
    • Sesquicentennial of Connecticut's Navy Installation: Senate agreed to S. Res. 458, designating April 11, 2018, as the ``Sesquicentennial of Connecticut's Navy Installation''.
  • Pizzella Nomination--Agreement:
    • Senate resumed consideration of the nomination of Patrick Pizzella, of Virginia, to be Deputy Secretary of Labor.
  • During consideration of this nomination today, Senate also took the following action:
    • By 50 yeas to 48 nays (Vote No. 68), Senate agreed to the motion to close further debate on the nomination.
    • A unanimous-consent-time agreement was reached providing that notwithstanding the provisions of Rule XXII, all post-cloture time on the nomination expire at 9:30 a.m., on Thursday, April 12, 2018, and Senate vote on confirmation of the nomination; and that there be two minutes of debate, equally divided, prior to each vote.
    • A unanimous-consent agreement was reached providing for further consideration of the nomination, post-cloture, at approximately 9:15 a.m., on Thursday, April 12, 2018.
  • Nomination Confirmed: Senate confirmed the following nomination:
    • By 50 yeas to 48 nays (Vote No. EX. 67), John F. Ring, of the District of Columbia, to be a Member of the National Labor Relations Board for the term of five years expiring December 16, 2022.

 

Today

  • The Senate stands adjourned until 9:15am on Thursday, April 12, 2018.
  • Following leader remarks, the Senate will proceed to Executive Session and resume consideration of Executive Calendar #605, Patrick Pizzella, of Virginia, to be Deputy Secretary of Labor.
  • At 9:30am, all post-cloture time will expire on the nomination and the Senate will vote on confirmation of the nomination. Upon disposition of the Pizzella nomination, there will be 2 minutes for debate prior to a cloture vote on the Wheeler nomination. If cloture is invoked, there would be up to 30 hours of post-cloture debate prior to a vote on confirmation. Next up: Broomes and Jennings to be district judges.
  • 9:30am--2 roll call votes:
    • 1. Confirmation of Executive Calendar #605, Patrick Pizzella ,of Virginia, to be Deputy Secretary of Labor
    • 2. Cloture on Executive Calendar #666, Andrew Wheeler, of Virginia, to be Deputy Administrator of the EPA
  • Cloture was filed on the following nominations:
    • 1. Executive Calendar #539, Claria Horn Boom, of Kentucky, to be US District Judge for the Eastern and Western Districts of Kentucky (confirmed)
    • 2. Executive Calendar #728, John F. Ring, of the District of Columbia, to be a Member of the National Labor Relations Board (confirmed)
    • 3. Executive Calendar #605, Patrick Pizzella ,of Virginia, to be Deputy Secretary of Labor (cloture Invoked, confirmation vote 9:30am Thursday)
    • 4. Executive Calendar #666, Andrew Wheeler, of Virginia, to be Deputy Administrator of the EPA (Cloture vote around 10am Thursday)
    • 5. Executive Calendar #540, John W. Broomes, of Kansas, to be United States District Judge for the District of Kansas
    • 6. Executive Calendar #541, Rebecca Grady Jennings, of Kentucky, to be United States District Judge for the Western District
  • If cloture is invoked on a nomination, there would be up to 30 hours of post-cloture debate prior to a vote on confirmation. Then on to cloture on the next nomination with the same process.

 

Hearings Covered by W&J Today

 

Senate Commerce
Are We Ready for the Next Hurricane Season? Status of Preparation and Response Capabilities for 2018

Senate Banking
CFPB Annual Report

House Energy and Commerce
Medicare/Medicaid Opioid Addiction Care

House Financial Services
FHFA Oversight

House Oversight and Government Reform
State-Administered Medicaid Improper Payments

House Ways and Means
Tariff Effects on U.S. Economy and Jobs

Senate Appropriations
Labor Department

House Financial Services
Foreign Investment National Security Risks

House Armed Services
Combat Aviation Program

House Appropriations
Transportation Budget

 

Notable Legislation Introduced

 

Energy

S.2649 — 115th Congress (2017-2018)
A bill to require the Secretary of Energy to establish a natural gas demand response pilot program, and for other purposes.
Sponsor: Sen. Whitehouse, Sheldon [D-RI] (Introduced 04/11/2018) Cosponsors: (0)
Committees: Senate - Energy and Natural Resources
Latest Action: Senate - 04/11/2018 Read twice and referred to the Committee on Energy and Natural Resources.

 

Financial Services

H.R.5470 — 115th Congress (2017-2018)
To repeal the Office of Financial Research, and for other purposes.
Sponsor: Rep. Budd, Ted [R-NC-13] (Introduced 04/11/2018) Cosponsors: (1)
Committees: House - Financial Services
Latest Action: House - 04/11/2018 Referred to the House Committee on Financial Services.

 

Health

H.R.5477 — 115th Congress (2017-2018)
To amend title XIX of the Social Security Act to provide for a demonstration project to increase substance use provider capacity under the Medicaid program.
Sponsor: Rep. O'Halleran, Tom [D-AZ-1] (Introduced 04/11/2018) Cosponsors: (0)
Committees: House - Energy and Commerce
Latest Action: House - 04/11/2018 Referred to the House Committee on Energy and Commerce.

H.R.5473 — 115th Congress (2017-2018)
To direct the Secretary of Health and Human Services to update or issue one or more guidance addressing alternative methods for data collection on opioid sparing and inclusion of such data in product labeling, and for other purposes.
Sponsor: Rep. Comstock, Barbara [R-VA-10] (Introduced 04/11/2018) Cosponsors: (1)
Committees: House - Energy and Commerce
Latest Action: House - 04/11/2018 Referred to the House Committee on Energy and Commerce.

H.R.5472 — 115th Congress (2017-2018)
To promote competition and help consumers save money by giving them the freedom to choose where they buy prescription pet medications, and for other purposes.
Sponsor: Rep. Collins, Chris [R-NY-27] (Introduced 04/11/2018) Cosponsors: (1)
Committees: House - Energy and Commerce
Latest Action: House - 04/11/2018 Referred to the House Committee on Energy and Commerce.

H.R.5466 — 115th Congress (2017-2018)
To exempt Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid from any Federal balanced budget requirement, and for other purposes.
Sponsor: Rep. Deutch, Theodore E. [D-FL-22] (Introduced 04/11/2018) Cosponsors: (0)
Committees: House - Budget
Latest Action: House - 04/11/2018 Referred to the House Committee on the Budget.

S.2651 — 115th Congress (2017-2018)
A bill to promote competition and help consumers save money by giving them the freedom to choose where they buy prescription pet medications, and for other purposes.
Sponsor: Sen. Blumenthal, Richard [D-CT] (Introduced 04/11/2018) Cosponsors: (1)
Committees: Senate - Commerce, Science, and Transportation
Latest Action: Senate - 04/11/2018 Read twice and referred to the Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation.

S.2646 — 115th Congress (2017-2018)
A bill to establish a pilot program administered by the Secretary of Labor, in collaboration with the Secretary of Health and Human Services, to award competitive grants to counties (or other equivalent entities) and Tribal entities to administer combined workforce training and drug addiction treatment and recovery programs, and for other purposes.
Sponsor: Sen. Brown, Sherrod [D-OH] (Introduced 04/11/2018) Cosponsors: (1)
Committees: Senate - Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions
Latest Action: Senate - 04/11/2018 Read twice and referred to the Committee on Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions.

S.2645 — 115th Congress (2017-2018)
A bill to establish a demonstration program under which the Drug Enforcement Administration provides grants to certain States to enable those States to increase participation in drug take-back programs.
Sponsor: Sen. Ernst, Joni [R-IA] (Introduced 04/11/2018) Cosponsors: (2)
Committees: Senate - Judiciary
Latest Action: Senate - 04/11/2018 Read twice and referred to the Committee on the Judiciary.

PublicationsInsights on Current Policy Issues

  • April 19, 2018

    By David E. Franasiak, Joel G. Oswald, Michael D. Kans, and Rebecca L. Konst

     This memorandum will provide a survey of federal action on cryptocurrencies (aka virtual currencies), including enforcement and guidance. At present, some federal regulators have begun asserting oversight and enforcement authority under their existing powers while other potential regulators have not yet indicated publicly what, if any, oversight they will exercise. Other federal stakeholders on cryptocurrencies have also begun to engage. However, the U.S. government’s approach to virtual currencies remains fluid.

     

    Read...

    Read More
  • February 5, 2018

    By David E. Franasiak, Joel G. Oswald, Michael D. Kans, and Rebecca L. Konst

     This memorandum will provide a survey of federal action on cryptocurrencies (aka virtual currencies), including enforcement and guidance. At present, some federal regulators have begun asserting oversight and enforcement authority under their existing powers while other potential regulators have not yet indicated publicly what, if any, oversight they will exercise. Other federal stakeholders on cryptocurrencies have also begun to engage. However, the U.S. government’s approach to virtual currencies remains fluid.

     

    Read...

    Read More
  • January 11, 2018

    By Frank Vlossak

    Since taking office, President Trump and his Administration have worked toward regulatory reform that includes the review, revision, and repeal of existing regulations, with a focus on rules promulgated by the Obama Administration. Congress has played a key role in this effort, through the use of the Congressional Review Act to repeal rules finalized in the waning months of the prior Administration, as well as one rule issued by the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) in 2017.

    President Trump signed a series of executive orders in the early months of his presidency that are propelling the deregulatory efforts of federal agencies. These executive orders: set a cap limiting regulations in Fiscal Year 2017 to zero net cost; provide agencies with a framework for limiting new regulations and identifying existing rules to repeal or revise; direct review and revision or repeal of the “Waters of the United States” rule issued by the Obama Administration; and require review and reform of energy and climate-related regulations.

     

    Read...

    Read More

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