Native American Issues
Honorary Veteran Status
HR 1384 would provide honorary veteran status to those members of the National Guard or Reserve who have served for 20 years and do not meet the full requirements of veteran status under the US Code. Passed House.
Burying Unclaimed Veteran Remains
HR 1338 requires a study to determine the scope of issues relating to unclaimed remains of veterans and assess the effectiveness of VA procedures to facilitate interment of those remains. Passed House.
HR 1694 adds veteran owned and operated businesses to the list of businesses who would receive 10% set aside of contracts for highway and pubic transportation projects and research and development. Passed House.
Under HR 3114 the US Army Corps of Engineers is directed to develop a Veteran’s Curator Program. The program would hire veterans and members of the Armed Forces to help carry out curation and historic preservation activities. Passed House.
Promise Not Kept
The bill, HR 308, prohibits gaming on certain land held in trust for the Tohono O’odham Nation in Phoenix, after April 9, 2014 until January 1, 2027. Failed in the House.
Tribal NLRB Protections
By excluding enterprises located on tribal land from the definition of employer… HR 511 would eliminate the right of employees of such enterprises to file a claim, individually or through a union, regarding certain labor practices. Passed House.
SPACE Open for Business
HR 2262 would facilitate a pro-growth environment for the developing commercial space industry by encouraging private sector investment and creating more stable and predictable regulatory conditions. (SPACE stands for Spurring Private Aerospace Competitiveness and Entrepreneurship Act of 2015) Passed House.
S 1177 reauthorizes the Elementary and Secondary Education Act of 1965 commonly referred to as No Child Left Behind) To House – Senate Conference.
Refugee Vetting, Banking & Finance ‘Reform’ Dominate House Bills
Senate Moves on Appropriations, Disapproves of EPA Rules
Some New Rules for the FCC and the Fed
The House passed HR 4038, a last minute bill that would require significant background investigation of each refugee admitted to the US from Iraq or Syria. While the bill comes about following the President’s decision to take in 10,000 Syrian refugees and the terror attacks in Paris, the bill does not confine itself to only those currently seeking refugee status in the US. Passed House.
The House, this week, considered seven bills regarding banking and finance.
The House debated HR 1737 that takes issue with a document proposed by the Consumer Financial Protection Board aiming to offer guidance on how to avoid discriminatory lending practices by secondary lenders such as car dealers. Passed House
Lenders concerned with new CFPB rules regarding disclosure of mortgage borrowing obligations now in effect may get some relief from the anticipated risk of failing to meet the CFPB requirements in HR 1210 that offers some protection to creditors, bank regulators and mortgage originators. Passed House
HR 3032 returns after being delayed last week and was passed repealing the SEC access to information contained in financial records of a customer from a financial institution without prior notice to the customer. Passed House
HR 1317 affects commodity end-users who use swaps to hedge actual commodity risks. They are largely exempt from posting margin or centrally clearing their swaps trades. This would be allowed only if the affiliate enters into the swap to hedge or mitigate the commercial risk of the person that is not a financial entity or like entities. Passed House
The Senate moved forward on and agreed with House amendments to HR 22, the vehicle for transportation and housing spending, the vehicle for Defense Authorization spending on which the Senate agreed with the House amendments, and amended and passed H.R. 2029, Military Construction and Veteran’s Affairs Appropriations.
HR 2577 carrying four year transportation spending was passed by the House, amended by the Senate but the Senate request for cloture on the bill was withdrawn. Funding for projects is provided in HR 3996 until December 15th.
Senators agreed to SJR 24 that would make null and void a rule EPA is proposing that would set emission guidelines for electricity generating units that burn fossil fuels and to SJR 23 disapproving and making null and void a rule submitted by EPA relating to “Standards of Performance for Greenhouse Gas Emissions from New, Modified, and Reconstructed units. Passed Senate.
Long a target for reform, the Federal Communications Commission would face changes under HR 2583 that separates the Universal Service Fund from the Anti-deficiency Act requirements resulting in, CBO concludes, Schools and Libraries being unable to obligate funds for Internet connections. Passed House
The Federal Reserve Board
HR 1478 establishes that any regulation, order, or other action of the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System that requires a bank holding company to provide funds or other assets to a subsidiary depository institution (‘Source of financial strength’) shall not be effective nor enforceable with respect to some entities. Passed House
HR 3189 amends the Federal Reserve Act to establish requirements for the Federal Open Market Committee and reforms the manner in which the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System is audited. Passed House
National Security and Health
The bill, HR 1073, directs Homeland Security to include the threat of Electro Magnetic Pulse in national planning and as a reason to conduct outreach to educate owners and operators of critical infrastructure, emergency planners and response providers and planners of the threat of EMP. Passed House
HR 3144, held over from last week, requires consultation with the Aviation Security Advisory Committee (ASAC) regarding any modifications to the list of prohibited items prior to making any modifications. Passed House
Prenatal Opioid Study
S 799 directs the Secretary of Health and Human Services to conduct a review of planning and coordination related to prenatal opioid use, including neonatal abstinence syndrome, within HHS and develop a strategy to address gaps in research and gaps, overlaps, and duplication among federal programs. Passed Senate / Passed House.
FDA and Controlled Substances
HR 639 would delay FDA approval of a drug, biological product or animal drug for which FDA recommends controls until the Department of Justice issues a final interim rule for those substances after which the drug can be marketed. Passed House
S 599 would temporarily extend the Medicaid Emergency Psychiatric Demonstration for states already participating through September 30, 2016, provided the Secretary determines that doing so would not increase net spending in the Medicaid program) . Passed Senate. Passed House
Exec Bonuses Suspended
S. 2036 directs the Director of the Federal Housing Finance Agency to suspend the packages and replace them with benefits approved as of January 1, 2015. Thereafter there can be no more increases in the packages. Passed Senate. Passed House.
HR 208 authorizes a loan program under which a small business, homeowner, or renter affected by Superstorm Sandy in 2012 may apply for a loan to repair, rehabilitate, or replace property damaged or destroyed because of the storm; or assist a small business that suffered substantial economic injury because of it. Passed House and Senate.