The TRCP’s scouting report on sportsmen’s issues in Congress
The Senate and House are both in session this week. They will return on Tuesday, September 6.
This is the last week before a lawmakers leave for a seven-week recess, and they are concentrating on appropriation bills. On Monday, the House Rules Committee will vote on “The Department of the Interior, Environment, and Related Agencies Appropriations Act.” They will consider more than 150 amendments to it, including one that would prohibit the Land and Water Conservation Fund from being used in wetland restoration projects, and decide what will be considered on the House floor. All amendments that have been filed to the Interior bill can be found here. The underlying bill includes other poison pill provisions, such as blocking the administration’s Clean Water Rule, halting federal and state governments’ collaborative efforts to conserve greater sage-grouse habitat, and a 90-day delay on the implementation of the Bureau of Land Management’s Planning 2.0 Rule.
Meanwhile, Senate leadership continues to clash on spending bills. Last week, the defense appropriations bill did not reach the 60-vote threshold needed to invoke cloture. Democrats failed to support cloture because the bill breaks the bipartisan budget agreement from October 2015, and because Democrats have long pledged to oppose a defense funding measure that had increases for military spending, without equal increases in domestic funding. Senator Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) is expected to bring the defense spending bill back to the floor for another go-round this week.
Leadership hoped to pass all 12 appropriation bills before members leave for the seven-week recess and prepare for their respective national party conventions. However, more and more lawmakers believe a continuing resolution will need to be passed before September 30, the end of the fiscal year.
Public land renewable energy development is up for discussion on Wednesday. The House Natural Resources Subcommittee on Energy and Mineral Resources will meet to discuss Rep. Paul Gosar’s (R-Ariz.) “Public Land Renewable Energy Development Act,” which would provide modern approaches to energy development and conserving fish and wildlife habitat on public lands.
Steve Moyer, Trout Unlimited’s vice president for government affairs, will testify on behalf of the sportsmen’s community and our support for the bill.
Other legislation on the floor include a bill that would extend the authorization of the Federal Aviation Administration programs; the Senate bill that would require genetically modified food to be labelled; a bill that would address the concerns about health care providers offering abortion services.
The Senate will consider a House passed bill that would combat the opioid epidemic.
What else we’re tracking:
Tuesday, July 12, 2016
- Public lands legislation will be discussed in at Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee markup hearing
- Changing demands and water supply uncertainty in California are up for debate in a House Natural Resources Subcommittee on Water, Power and Oceans hearing
- Opportunities and challenges of developing the Mancos Shale resource will be discussed in a House Natural Resources Subcommittee on Energy and Mineral Resources hearing
- The Securing Energy Infrastructure Act will be discussed at a Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee hearing
- Conservation-related legislation is on the docket at a House Natural Resources Committee full committee markup
Wednesday, July 13, 2016
- The Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation and Liability Act will be debated at a House Energy and Commerce Subcommittee on Environment and the Economy oversight hearing
- The Public Land Renewable Energy Development Act of 2015 will be the subject of a House Natural Resources Subcommittee on Energy and Mineral Resources hearing
Thursday, July 14, 2016
- The Status of Ivanpah and Other Federal Loan-Guaranteed Solar Energy Projects on BLM Lands will be deliberated at a House Natural Resources Subcommittee on Oversight and Investigations hearing