PublicationsInsights on Current Policy Issues

  • December 17, 2018

    By David E. Franasiak, Joel G. Oswald, Leah H. Kim, and Rebecca L. Konst

    This memorandum provides an update of federal action on cryptocurrencies, including enforcement and guidance. It also provides a summary of Congressional activity relating to cryptocurrencies and blockchain technology.

     

    Read...

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  • August 13, 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...

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  • 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.

     

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The House will continue consideration of H.R. 3055 – Commerce, Justice, Science, Agriculture, Rural Development, Food and Drug Administration, Interior, Environment, Military Construction, Veterans Affairs, Transportation, and Housing and Urban Development Appropriations Act, 2020 (Rep. Serrano – Appropriations).

THE HOUSE

 

Yesterday

  • SUMMARY OF LEGISLATIVE BUSINESS
    • Division A – Commerce, Justice, Science
    • Rutherford (R-FL) – Amendment No. 3 - Increases the NOAA Operations, Research, and Facilities account by $3.5 million for third party data collection of reef fish in the South Atlantic. It is offset by decreasing the National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA), Salaries and Expenses account to FY19 levels
      • -REJECTED 186 - 245 - 1, ROLL CALL 368
    • King, Steve (R-IA) – Amendment No. 9 - Strikes lines 14-18 (Section 534, pg. 107), which states that none of the funds made available in this Act or any other Act may be used by the Department of Commerce to incorporate into the 2020 Decennial Census any question that was not included in the 2018 End to- End Census Test in Providence County, Rhode Island
      • - REJECTED 192 - 240, ROLL CALL 369
    • Blumenauer (D-OR) – Amendment No. 17 - Prohibits the Department of Justice from interfering with state cannabis programs. The term “state” includes the District of Columbia, the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands, Guam, the Virgin Islands, and Puerto Rico
      • - ADOPTED 267 - 165, ROLL CALL 370
    • Banks (R-IN) – Amendment No. 36 - Reduces amounts made available in Division A, other than amounts made available to the Department of Defense, by 14 percent
      • - REJECTED 135 - 296, ROLL CALL 371
    • Crow (D-CO), Escobar (D-TX) – Amendment No. 65 - Ensures that the U.S. Census Bureau follow existing law and not share data or information gathered, especially through data sharing agreements, with any department, bureau, or agency and penalizes disclosure of information by Census employees
      • - ADOPTED BY VOICE
    • Dean (D-PA), Scanlon (D-PA), Cartwright (D-PA) – Amendment No. 66 - Increases funding for the John R. Justice Program by $2,000,000, to provide student loan repayment assistance for public defenders and prosecutors. This program is intended to serve as an incentive for qualified individuals to enter and continue employment as public defenders or prosecutors- without this vital funding, the program will continue to fall short of its mission
      • - ADOPTED BY VOICE
    • Escobar (D-TX) – Amendment No. 68 - Prohibits funds from being used to enforce the zero-tolerance prosecution policy at the Department of Justice
      • - ADOPTED BY VOICE
    • Golden (D-ME), Pingree (D-ME) – Amendment No. 70 - States that none of the funds may be used for NOAA to utilize a North Atlantic right whale Risk Reduction Decision Support Tool
      • - ADOPTED 84 - 345, ROLL CALL 372
    • Horn (D-OK) – Amendment No. 71 - Decreases and increases funding by $2.5 million for Byrne Justice Assistance Grants Memorial funding dedicated to training to improve police responses to people with developmental disabilities or mental illnesses
      • - ADOPTED BY VOICE
    • Golden (D-ME) [on behalf of Kim (D-NJ)] – Amendment No. 72 - Increases funding for the veterans treatment courts program by $1,000,000
      • - ADOPTED BY VOICE
    • Malinowski (D-NJ) – Amendment No. 73 - Increases funding for the National Security Division by $1,000,000 to be directed towards the Domestic Terrorism Counsel
      • - ADOPTED BY VOICE
    • Neguse (D-CO) – Amendment No. 75 - Increases funding by $1 million for the NASA Office of Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics Engagement, for the purposes of supporting the NASA Space Grant College and Fellowship Program
      • - ADOPTED BY VOICE
    • Neguse (D-CO) – Amendment No. 76 - Increases and decreases funding for the National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS) by $5 million in order to encourage states to continue to improve their criminal and mental records for the National Instant Criminal Background Check System
      • - ADOPTED BY VOICE
    • Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY) – Amendment No. 78 - Moves $5 million from the DEA (enforcement) to the Comprehensive Opioid Abuse Program (treatment) in keeping with the growing consensus to treat drug addiction as a public health issue. This still leaves the DEA with the $84.9 million more than FY19 and $72.7 million more than the president's request
      • - ADOPTED BY VOICE
    • Omar (D-MN), Pressley (D-MA) – Amendment No. 79 - Increases and decreases funding for the Federal Prison System by $1 million to express concern with the use of solitary confinement within the Federal Bureau of Prisons or the United States Marshals Service
      • - ADOPTED BY VOICE
    • Porter (D-CA), Tlaib (D-MI) – Amendment No. 81 - Increases funding for the court appointed special advocate and guardian ad litem program to $12,500,000
      • - ADOPTED BY VOICE
    • Porter (D-CA), Tlaib (D-MI) – Amendment No. 82 - Increases funding to reduce the sexual assault kit backlog to $50,000,000
      • - ADOPTED BY VOICE
    • Pressley (D-MA) – Amendment No. 83 - Directs an additional $3,000,000 to DOJ's Children of Incarcerated Parents program to support reentry services and family reunification upon release
      • - ADOPTED BY VOICE
    • Pressley (D-MA) – Amendment No. 84 - Increases and decreases funding by $2,000,000 for Byrne Justice Assistance Grants Memorial funding to support community-based violence prevention programs
      • - ADOPTED BY VOICE
    • Stevens (D-MI), Gaetz (R-FL), Neguse (D-CO), Fitzpatrick (R-PA), McAdams (D-UT), King, Peter (R-NY), Dean (D-PA), Buchanan (R-FL), Axne (D-IA) – Amendment No. 85 - Removes and adds $2,000,000 from the Legal Activities account at the Department of Justice for the purpose of instructing the Environment and Natural Resources Division to allocate more resources to the enforcement of animal cruelty laws
      • - ADOPTED 381 - 50, ROLL CALL 373
    • Underwood (D-IL), Jeffries (D-NY) – Amendment No. 89 - Prevents the Department of Justice from using federal funds for litigation that undermines the Affordable Care Act
      • - ADOPTED 238 - 194, ROLL CALL 374

 

Today

  • One Minutes (5 per side)
  • Continue Consideration of H.R. 3055 – Commerce, Justice, Science, Agriculture, Rural Development, Food and Drug Administration, Interior, Environment, Military Construction, Veterans Affairs, Transportation, and Housing and Urban Development Appropriations Act, 2020 (Rep. Serrano – Appropriations)
  • The Rule, which was adopted yesterday, allows for no further general debate, makes in order 290 amendments, and allows for amendments to be offered en bloc.  A full list of amendments can be found here.
  • As of tonight, the House has completed debate through Van Drew Amendment #194.  Tomorrow, the House is expected to complete consideration of Division D (Military Construction and Veterans Affairs).
  • Members should be prepared to offer their amendment at the appropriate time tomorrow. 

 

THE SENATE

 

Yesterday

  • Roll Call Votes
    1. Passage of S.J.Res.36, disapproval regarding Saudi bombs sales; passed: 53-45.
    2. Passage of S.J.Res.38, disapproval regarding Saudi bomb fuses sales; passed: 53-45.
    3. Passage of S.J. Resolutions 27-35, 37, 39-48, en bloc, disapproval regarding Saudi arms sales; passed: 51-45.
    4. Confirmation of Executive Calendar #122, Rita Baranwal, of Pennsylvania, to be an Assistant Secretary of Energy (Nuclear Energy); confirmed: 86-5.
  • Legislative Business
    • Adopted S.Res.257: designating June 20, 2019, as “American Eagle Day” and celebrating the recovery and restoration of the bald eagle, the national symbol of the United States.
    • Adopted S.Res.258: expressing support for the designation of May 2019 as “National Brain Tumor Awareness Month”.
    • Adopted S.Res.242: designating June 15, 2019, as “World Elder Abuse Day”.
    • Passed H.R.559: Northern Mariana Islands Long-Term Legal Residents Relief Act.
  • Executive Business
    • Confirmed the following nominations:
      • DEPARTMENT OF HOUSING AND URBAN DEVELOPMENT
        • Executive Calendar #88 - Seth Daniel Appleton, of Missouri, to be an Assistant Secretary of Housing and Urban Development
      • DEPARTMENT OF THE TREASURY
        • Executive Calendar #90 - Dino Falaschetti, of Montana, to be Director, Office of Financial Research, Department of the Treasury, for a term of six years
      • DEPARTMENT OF HOUSING AND URBAN DEVELOPMENT
        • Executive Calendar #92 - Robert Hunter Kurtz, of Virginia, to be an Assistant Secretary of Housing and Urban Development
      • DEPARTMENT OF THE TREASURY
        • Executive Calendar #93 - Bimal Patel, of Georgia, to be an Assistant Secretary of the Treasury
      • SECURITIES AND EXCHANGE COMMISSION
        • Executive Calendar #334 - Allison Herren Lee, of Colorado, to be a Member of the Securities and Exchange Commission for a term expiring June 5, 2022
      • DEPARTMENT OF STATE
        • Executive Calendar #195 - Keith Krach, of California, to be an Under Secretary of State (Economic Growth, Energy, and the Environment).
      • EUROPEAN BANK FOR RECONSTRUCTION AND DEVELOPMENT
        • Executive Calendar #196 - Keith Krach, of California, to be United States Alternate Governor of the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development
      • INTERNATIONAL BANK FOR RECONSTRUCTION AND DEVELOPMENT
        • Executive Calendar #197 - Keith Krach, of California, to be United States Alternate Governor of the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development and Inter-American Development Bank
      • DEPARTMENT OF STATE
        • Executive Calendar #287 - Jeffrey L. Eberhardt, of Wisconsin, a Career Member of the Senior Executive Service, to be Special Representative of the President for Nuclear Nonproliferation, with the rank of Ambassador.

 

Today

  • The Senate is not in Session.

 

Notable Legislation Introduced

 

Health

H.R.3386 — 116th Congress (2019-2020)
To amend title XI of the Social Security Act to require hospitals and critical access hospitals to provide uninsured individuals with access to the lowest negotiated rate for items and services furnished to such individuals.
Sponsor: Rep. Collins, Chris [R-NY-27] (Introduced 06/20/2019) Cosponsors: (0)
Committees: House - Energy and Commerce, Ways and Means
Latest Action: House - 06/20/2019 Referred to the Committee on Energy and Commerce, and in addition to the Committee on Ways and Means, for a period to be subsequently determined by the Speaker, in each case for consideration of such provisions as fall within the jurisdiction of the committee...

H.R.3379 — 116th Congress (2019-2020)
To amend the Public Health Service Act to shorten the exclusivity period for brand name biological products from 12 to 5 years.
Sponsor: Rep. Schakowsky, Janice D. [D-IL-9] (Introduced 06/20/2019) Cosponsors: (16)
Committees: House - Energy and Commerce
Latest Action: House - 06/20/2019 Referred to the House Committee on Energy and Commerce.

S.1935 — 116th Congress (2019-2020)
A bill to amend the Internal Revenue Code of 1986 to ensure that working families have access to affordable health insurance coverage.
Sponsor: Sen. Brown, Sherrod [D-OH] (Introduced 06/20/2019) Cosponsors: (20)
Committees: Senate - Finance
Latest Action: Senate - 06/20/2019 Read twice and referred to the Committee on Finance.

S.1928 — 116th Congress (2019-2020)
A bill to amend title XVIII of the Social Security Act to improve the enrollment of retiring individuals in the Medicare program.
Sponsor: Sen. Portman, Rob [R-OH] (Introduced 06/20/2019) Cosponsors: (1)
Committees: Senate - Finance
Latest Action: Senate - 06/20/2019 Read twice and referred to the Committee on Finance.

S.1926 — 116th Congress (2019-2020)
A bill to increase access to pre-exposure prophylaxis to reduce the transmission of HIV.
Sponsor: Sen. Harris, Kamala D. [D-CA] (Introduced 06/20/2019) Cosponsors: (0)
Committees: Senate - Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions
Latest Action: Senate - 06/20/2019 Read twice and referred to the Committee on Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions.

S.1925 — 116th Congress (2019-2020)
A bill to authorize State opioid response grants, and for other purposes.
Sponsor: Sen. Portman, Rob [R-OH] (Introduced 06/20/2019) Cosponsors: (0)
Committees: Senate - Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions
Latest Action: Senate - 06/20/2019 Read twice and referred to the Committee on Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions.

 

Tax

H.R.3397 — 116th Congress (2019-2020)
To amend the Internal Revenue Code to increase the exclusion for employer-provided dependent care assistance and to allow individuals to carry forward dependent care flexible spending arrangement account balances.
Sponsor: Rep. Wagner, Ann [R-MO-2] (Introduced 06/20/2019) Cosponsors: (3)
Committees: House - Ways and Means
Latest Action: House - 06/20/2019 Referred to the House Committee on Ways and Means.

 

PublicationsInsights on Current Policy Issues

  • December 17, 2018

    By David E. Franasiak, Joel G. Oswald, Leah H. Kim, and Rebecca L. Konst

    This memorandum provides an update of federal action on cryptocurrencies, including enforcement and guidance. It also provides a summary of Congressional activity relating to cryptocurrencies and blockchain technology.

     

    Read...

    Read More
  • August 13, 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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