Resourcing U.S. Priorities in the Indo-Pacific FY23 Budget

Posted by Brad Johnson Wed, 08 Jun 2022 14:00:00 GMT

Hearing page

  • Donald Lu, Assistant Secretary of State, Bureau of South and Central Asian Affairs, U.S. Department of State
  • Camille Dawson, Deputy Assistant Secretary, Bureau of Asia, U.S. Department of State
  • Craig Hart, Deputy Assistant Administrator, Bureau of Asia, U.S. Agency for International Development

The FY 2023 Pacific Deterrence Initiative is a $6.1 billion subset of the Department of Defense’s FY 2023 budget.

The Budget also in­cludes nearly $1.8 billion to support a free and open, connected, secure, and resilient Indo- Pacific Region and the Indo-Pacific Strategy, and $400 million for the Countering the People’s Republic of China Malign Influence Fund.

Defense Environmental Restoration

Posted by Brad Johnson Thu, 26 May 2022 16:00:00 GMT

Hearing page

The FY 2023 Defense budget includes $1.1 billion in requested funds for environmental restoration.

President’s Fiscal Year 2023 funding request and budget justification for the Navy and Marine Corps

Posted by Brad Johnson Thu, 26 May 2022 14:00:00 GMT

Hearing page

Chair: Jon Tester (D-Mont.)

  • Carlos Del Toro, Secretary, United States Navy
  • Admiral Michael M. Gilday, Chief Of Naval Operations
  • General David H. Berger, Commandant Of The Marine Corps

The Department of the Navy budget is $230.8 billion: a Navy budget at $180.5 billion and Marine Corps budget at $50.3 billion.

The Navy is requesting $718.8 million in climate-related funding:
  • $190.6 million for energy saving performance contracts or utility energy services contracts for the Navy
  • $3.1 million for energy saving performance contracts or utility energy services contracts for the Marine Corps
  • $33.9 million to deploy renewable energy, energy storage, and energy or water efficiency improvements for the Navy
  • $16.9 million to deploy renewable energy, energy storage, and energy or water efficiency improvements for the Marine Corps
  • $108.5 million for Navy erosion control projects and seawall repair, and future environmental resilience projects
  • $13.2 million for Marine Corps’ natural resources projects that support installation and training resiliency to climate change
  • $17.9 million for the Navy to enable revised installation master plans to incorporate impacts from climate change, and the development, planning, design, and execution of future projects to address climate impacts
  • $16.5 million enhance the energy security posture of Marine Corps installations, and accelerate advanced micro-grid deployment
  • $12.9 million for manpower to increase energy efficiency expertise within the Navy’s energy offices
  • $6.3 million Navy investment for projects to develop higher efficiency Gallium Nitride (GaN) High Power Amplifiers, used in maritime advanced technology radar and surface electronic warfare systems
  • $8.6 million for the Navy to fund $1.3 million in operational energy upgrades provides modernizations for Littoral Combat Ship (LCS) propulsion systems and $7.3 million in research and development efforts for the Navy’s Integrated Power System (IPS)
  • $7.9 million for the Marine Corps Medium Tactical Vehicle Replacement (MTVR) Family of Vehicles, to set next generation vehicle standards for fuel efficiency and vehicle hybrid electrification
  • $13.5 million for Marine Corps programs to set new standards for the Family of Mobile Power Systems, Family of Medium Tactical Vehicle Replacement, and Family of Expeditionary Fuel Systems
  • $94.8 million more for the Navy’s Integrated Power System (IPS)
  • $10.5 million in carbon-sequestration fundes for the Navy to fund priority projects, such as wetland and forest restoration, that increase base resiliency
  • $5.4 million for Navy to fund the battery development safety program that focuses on the safe implementation and fielding of high energy batteries through a rigorous certification process
  • $0.9 million for Navy to fund research into microbial fuel cells (MFCs), an energy resource that can operate in marine sediments and provide underwater power
  • $7.3 million for Navy for low-carbon fuel research, such as hydrogen, to help replace the 1 billion gallons of fuel the Navy uses annually
  • $43.2 million in Navy funding for efficiency technologies such as micro-vanes, refueling drogue stabilization, engine wash, blade coatings, and mission planning to increase the efficiency of Naval aircraft
  • $4.8 million for Marine Corps’ Family of Mobile Power Systems, consisting of a wide range of current and emerging technologies for mobile power generation, storage, and distribution systems
  • $10.5 million for Navy to fund the assessment, development, maturation, and transition of power (batteries and fuel cells), thermal management (models and fluid transfer), and engine and airframe efficiency technologies to increase the mission capability of Naval aircraft
  • $10.8 million for the Marine Corps supports development of a variety of technologies including Cold Weather and Mountaineering equipment, Family of Shelters, and the offices that conduct this research
  • $49.0 million for Navy to fund the Naval Platform Operational Endurance & Climate Resiliency Science project to advance design tools focused on climate resilience and predicting emissions from platforms. Pursuing technology development efforts to impact climate remediation, including evaluation of Low Global Warming Potential refrigerants, Subsea & Seabed Warfare Energy Harvesting, and Direct Air Capture & Blue Carbon fuel synthesis. Funding also supports electrical and auxiliary system and component technology to dramatically improve naval capabilities by providing energy and power resiliency
  • $3.7 million for the Navy funds an effort to improve integration of weather and ocean forecasts into ship routing, ship response and propulsion efficiency planning
  • $7.7 million for war-games for the Navy looking at critical infrastructure protection
  • $0.4 million for the Marine Corps Prepositioning Program – Norway that supports the withdrawal of equipment and supplies for ashore prepositioning sites in support of contingency preparedness for cold weather related exercises

In regards to climate change, the ‘23 budget increases climate investments by a total of $137 million across the shore providing funding for electric vehicle leasing, charging stations, installation resiliency, and natural resource carbon sequestration projects.

FY23 Member Day for the Subcommittee on Agriculture

Posted by Brad Johnson Wed, 25 May 2022 19:30:00 GMT

Reauthorization and Reform of the National Flood Insurance Program

Posted by Brad Johnson Wed, 25 May 2022 16:00:00 GMT

Hearing page

  • Carolyn Kousky, Executive Director, Wharton Risk Center
  • Karen McHugh, Missouri State NFIP Coordinator
  • Ariel Rivera-Miranda, Founder and Agency Principal, Deer Insurance
  • Roy Wright, President & CEO, Insurance Institute for Business and Home Safety
  • H.R. , the “The National Flood Insurance Program Reauthorization Act of 2022.” (Rep. Waters)
  • H.R. 7842, the “The Protecting Families and the Solvency of the National Flood Insurance Program Act of 2022.” (Rep. Casten)
  • H.R. , the “The National Flood Insurance Program Administrative Reform Act of 2022.” (Rep. Velázquez)
  • H.R. , a bill to cancel the indebtedness of the National Flood Insurance Program, and for other purposes. (Rep. Waters)
  • H.R. , a bill to limit the annual increases in premiums and surcharges under the National Flood Insurance Program, and for other purposes.

The last long-term reauthorization of the NFIP occurred when Congress passed the Biggert-Waters Flood Insurance Reform Act of 2012 (BW-12), which was subsequently amended by the Homeowner Flood Insurance Affordability Act of 2014 (HFIAA). Since the end of fiscal year (FY) 2017, the NFIP has had 19 short-term reauthorizations and has even experienced brief lapses. According to the National Association of Realtors, an estimated 40,000 home sales are lost or interrupted every month that the NFIP’s authority lapses. The NFIP’s authorization is currently set to expire on September 30, 2022. In the event of a lapse, the NFIP will be unable to enter into new flood insurance contracts, which will lead to widespread market instability due to the stalling of mortgage processing for homes that are statutorily required to have flood insurance.

On November 15, 2021, President Biden signed the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act, which included $3.5 billion for flood mitigation and $500 million in grants to states for revolving loans for hazard mitigation through a new program called the Safeguarding Tomorrow through Ongoing Risk Mitigation (STORM) Act. On November 19, 2021, the House passed the Build Back Better Act, which includes provisions to forgive the NFIP’s $20.5 billion in debt and invests $600 million in setting up an affordability program for low-income policyholders, as well as $600 million toward updating flood maps. According to FEMA, the NFIP saves the nation an estimated $1.87 billion annually in flood losses avoided because of the NFIP’s building and floodplain management regulations.

Until 2021, FEMA had not updated its methodology for setting NFIP premium rates since the 1970s, when it adopted a risk rating method that accounts only for the 1% annual chance of fluvial and coastal flooding. In coordination with the US Army Corps of Engineers, US Geological Survey, and other experts, FEMA has now developed a new risk rating methodology, known as Risk Rating 2.0 (RR2). RR2 went into effect for new policyholders on October 1, 2021, and for new policyholders on April 1, 2022. RR2 is designed to more accurately “reflect an individual property’s risk, reflect more types of flood risk in rates, use the latest actuarial practices to set risk-based rates, provide rates that are easier to understand for agents and policyholders, and reduce complexity for agents to generate a flood insurance quote.”

Fiscal Year 2023 Budget Request for the Federal Emergency Management Agency

Posted by Brad Johnson Wed, 25 May 2022 15:00:00 GMT

Hearing page

  • Deanne Criswell, Administrator, Federal Emergency Management Agency

The FEMA FY2023 budget request is $29.5 billion.

The Homeland Security Act, as amended by the Post-Katrina Emergency Management Reform Act, directs FEMA to reduce the loss of life and property and protect the nation from all hazards, including natural disasters, acts of terrorism, and other disasters through a risk-based, comprehensive emergency management system of preparedness, protection, response, recovery, and mitigation. As of January 2022, FEMA employed more than 22,000 personnel – including term and intermittent employees – to carry out the Agency’s mission.

The Robert T. Stafford Disaster Relief and Emergency Assistance Act (Stafford Act) authorizes the Federal government to provide assistance to State, territorial, and local governments, tribal nations, eligible private nonprofit organizations, and individuals affected by an incident that receives a Presidential major disaster or emergency declaration.

The Disaster Recovery Reform Act of 2018 (DRRA, Division D of P.L. 115-254) includes reforms to improve FEMA’s ability to carry out its mission and better prepare the nation for disasters. FEMA continues to make progress implementing its provisions.

FEMA also delivers the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP), pre-disaster and post-disaster mitigation grant programs, flood mapping, disaster planning, exercise management and coordination, urban search and rescue coordination, the Homeland Security Grant Program, the Assistance to Firefighters Grant Program, and other grants, training, and exercise programs.

The FY 2023 President’s Budget includes increased funding for programs and activities that support the goals outlined in the 2022-2026 FEMA Strategic Plan:

Civil Rights and Reasonable Accommodation Services and Support ($3.9M, 3 FTE)

Funds enable the Office of Equal Rights to enforce and ensure compliance with FEMA’s civil rights responsibilities and proactively and comprehensively respond to civil rights complaints filed by disaster survivors and members of the public regarding FEMA programs.

Privacy Organization Program ($2.0M, 4 FTE)

FEMA will significantly advance its Privacy Program by expanding participation and customer support for FEMA operations and State, local, tribal, and territorial (SLTT) stakeholders to enhance privacy compliance and bolster privacy safeguards during rapid-paced response and recovery efforts. FEMA will use an additional $2.2M from DRF carryover balances to support this program in FY 2023 for a total increase of $4.2M.

Regional Steady-State Interagency Coordination ($2.0M, 12 FTE)

Funds will assist FEMA in providing more equitable investment in disadvantaged communities and aid underserved and marginalized communities to develop the structures, relationships, and planning processes that promote equitable access to recovery resources post-disaster. FEMA will also focus SLTT capacity building to mitigate existing gaps in steady-State services and resources to communities.

Flood Hazard Mapping and Risk Analysis ($74.5M)

The Budget includes an additional $74.5M to further FEMA’s inventory of maps showing future conditions for a program total of $507.7M. These funds may also be used to support the Federal Flood Risk Mitigation Standard (FFRMS) and its climate-informed science activities with the purpose of preparing for future flood conditions.

Equitable Investment in Risk Reduction ($5.0M, 12 FTE)

Funding will support sustained and equitable investment in risk reduction through catalyzing community partnerships. Funds will also support creation of efficiencies and increase capabilities within FEMA’s Regional and program offices that assist our SLTT partners, while maximizing all available resources across three key assistance programs – Hazard Mitigation Grant Program, National Dam Safety Program, and BRIC grant programs.

Flood Hazard Mapping and Floodplain Management Expansion ($4.3M, 30 FTE)

Funding for the NFIP will allow the program to be staffed to complete the mapping projects initiated to deliver credible, up-to-date flood hazard information to communities and to manage development in a way that reduces flood losses, equitably reduces disaster suffering, encourages nature-based solutions and builds community resilience.

FY 2023 Major Disaster Estimate ($19.7B, 9,010 FTE) The Budget reflects a major disaster allocation totaling $19.7B to address ongoing Stafford Act disasters. The FY 2023 requirement includes more than $941.0M over the FY 2022 Budget for the response to COVID-19 and other recovery projects. Cost estimates are derived from spend plans prepared by FEMA Regions working with affected states and localities for ongoing catastrophic disasters, historical average of obligations for non-catastrophic disasters, allocation for BRIC, and a reserve to ensure FEMA maintains the ability to fund initial response operations for new significant events.

Mount Weather Emergency Operations Center (MWEOC) ($53.0M)

MWEOC has 565 acres and is a national asset providing resilient infrastructure, facilities, logistics support, communications, operations centers, and support personnel for a wide variety of vital government functions. It supports 30 plus different departments and agencies’ continuity missions. FY 2023 funds support facilities construction and modernization projects at the site.

Emergency Food and Shelter Program – Humanitarian Relief ($24.0M)

The Budget includes an increase of $24.0M to provide critical resources to migrants crossing the southern border and communities providing humanitarian relief to the thousands of families and individuals that do so, as well as any other humanitarian crisis that may arise. Funds will support providing food, shelter, transportation, COVID-19 testing, and care associated with recommended quarantining and isolation of this population.

Emergency Management Institute (EMI) Revitalization ($8.0M, 4 FTE) To advance the Administration priorities of climate resilience and equity, EMI Revitalization will modernize e-Campus systems, expand satellite partnerships, streamline course catalog, develop executive crisis leadership program, and facilitate emergency management thought leadership. This work will transform EMI to a National Emergency Management college, continuing EMI’s 70-year history of educating and training the national security workforce to meet the current risks of climate change and other emergent, persistent, and frequent hazards.

Support for Incident Management (IM) Workforce ($6.4M, 37 FTE)

This increase funds information technology and human capital specialists needed to recruit, hire, equip, and support a significant expansion of FEMA’s IM Workforce. Funding will also support non-pay costs associated with hiring, training, and equipping of incident management workforce enabling FEMA to successfully execute its disaster response and recovery functions. FEMA will use an additional $10.0M from DRF carryover balances to support the IM Workforce for a total increase of $16.4M.

Non-Stafford Act Incident Management Assistance Team (IMAT) ($4.3M, 21 FTE)

Funds will provide FEMA with a ready-made capability to support the growing number of contingencies related to complex incidents that are not related to a specific disaster declaration under the Stafford Act.

Federal Electric Vehicle Battery Management, Federal Firefighter Compensation, FEMA Turnover, and Other Legislation

Posted by Brad Johnson Wed, 25 May 2022 15:00:00 GMT

A business meeting to consider the following legislation:

  • S.4000, to require the establishment of cybersecurity information sharing agreements between the Department of Homeland Security and Congress
  • S.4128, to require the Comptroller General of the United States to provide certain information with respect to unimplemented priority recommendations as part of the Comptroller General’s annual reporting to Congress
  • S.4166, to authorize preparedness programs to support communities containing technological hazards and emerging threats
  • S.471, to allow Members of Congress to opt out of the Federal Employees Retirement System, and allow Members who opt out of the Federal Employees Retirement System to continue to participate in the Thrift Savings Plan,
  • S.4057, to develop a comprehensive, strategic plan for Federal electric vehicle fleet battery management
  • S.3905, to prevent organizational conflicts of interest in Federal acquisition
  • S.3890, to improve intergovernmental cooperation and reduce duplicative spending
  • S.4167, to improve performance and accountability in the Federal Government
  • S.3552, to provide an increased allocation of funding under certain programs for assistance in areas of persistent poverty
  • S.1116, to amend chapter 81 of title 5, United States Code, to create a presumption that a disability or death of a Federal employee in fire protection activities caused by any of certain diseases is the result of the performance of such employees duty
  • S.4205, to require the Administrator of the Federal Emergency Management Agency to establish a working group relating to best practices and Federal guidance for animals in emergencies and disasters
  • H.R.5673, to amend the Robert T. Stafford Disaster Relief and Emergency Assistance Act to make technical corrections to the hazard mitigation revolving loan fund program
  • H.R.5343, to direct the Comptroller General of the United States to submit a report to Congress on case management personnel turnover of the Federal Emergency Management Agency
  • H.R.2142, to designate the facility of the United States Postal Service located at 170 Manhattan Avenue in Buffalo, New York, as the “Indiana Hunt-Martin Post Office Building”
  • an original bill entitled, “DHS Trade and Economic Security Council Act”
  • an original bill entitled, “Disclosing Foreign Influence in Lobbying Act”

The nomination hearing for Biniam Gebre, of Virginia, to be Administrator for Federal Procurement Policy, which had been originally scheduled for the previous week, was announced for this date but then postponed again without notice.

Fiscal Year 2023 President’s Budget for the Department of Interior (Postponed)

Posted by Brad Johnson Wed, 25 May 2022 14:00:00 GMT

Hearing has been postponed to a date to be determined.

Chair: Jeff Merkley (D-Ore.)

  • Deb Haaland, Secretary, U.S. Department of the Interior

The Department’s 2023 budget totals $18.1 billion in current authority ($17.5 billion in net discretionary authority)—an increase of $2.9 billion, or 19 percent, from the 2022 continuing resolution. An additional $340.0 million is accessible through a budget cap adjustment for wildfire suppression to ensure that funds are available in the event the regular annual appropriation is inadequate to meet suppression needs. The budget also provides an estimated $10.9 billion in permanent funding in 2023.

The Bureau of Land Management budget proposes $249.9 million for Energy and Minerals Management. Effectively combating and mitigating climate change for the long term depends on moving our Nation away from its heavy reliance on fossil fuels. BLM plays a vital role in promoting and facilitating the development of renewable energy by providing sites for the environmentally sound development of renewable energy on public lands. The 2023 budget includes $49.7 million for BLM’s Renewable Energy program, which—along with funding in the Resource Management Planning, Assessment, and Monitoring program—will enable BLM to increase and accelerate renewable energy development on public lands. The funds will support the siting, leasing, and processing of renewable energy rights-of-way applications and the oversight of projects and transmission lines connecting to renewable energy projects. BLM’s Renewable Energy Coordination Offices (RECOs) will guide and execute this important work, including coordinating with other Federal agencies to streamline the review process for clean energy projects. The 2023 request for the Renewable Energy program includes staffing support for a national RECO at the BLM headquarters level as well as State and regional RECOs. BLM expects renewable energy demand and workload to increase significantly as more utilities and States seek to diversify or require increased renewable energy in their electric power portfolios. The 2023 request will better ensure that BLM has the manpower and resources to support this workload.

The budget proposes $115.8 million for Oil and Gas Management. The request will support continued progress in addressing legacy wells on the Alaska North Slope. The request for Energy and Minerals also includes $16.6 million for Coal Management and $16.7 million for Other Mineral Resources Management.

The 2023 Bureau of Ocean Energy Management budget requests $51.7 million for renewable energy activities, including permitting for the siting and construction of offshore wind farms and other renewable energy sources, such as wave and current energy, on the Outer Continental Shelf. The 2023 budget proposes $63.6 million for conventional energy development. The 2023 budget proposes $15.4 million to support BOEM’s marine minerals activities, which foster climate change resilience and restoration while supporting conservation partnerships. Foundational to BOEM’s offshore energy and mineral resource activities are the Environmental Programs, for which the 2023 budget requests $86.4 million.

The 2023 USGS budget is $1.7 billion; USGS estimates that staffing is 8,344 full-time equivalents (FTEs) . The budget prioritizes science addressing climate change and invests in research and development to support economic growth, inform balanced decisions regarding resources, and ensure the well-being of the Nation.

The 2023 President’s Budget for the Fish and Wildlife Service totals $3.7 billion, including current appropriations of $2.0 billion and $1.8 billion available under permanent appropriations, most of which is provided directly to States for fish and wildlife restoration and conservation. The budget for the principal FWS operating account, Resource Management, is $1.7 billion. The National Wildlife Refuge System is an FWS focal point for the Civilian Climate Corps, a program to put people to work improving America’s lands, waters, and infrastructure . The 2023 budget for FWS includes $10.0 million—including $8.0 million in the request for Refuges and $2.0 million in the request for the National Conservation Training Center in General Operations—to develop the next generation of conservation workers and create a new pathway to good-paying jobs. The 2023 request for Science Support is $38.5 million. The program supports adaptive science work with collaborative groups to design and implement conservation and habitat management strategies that improve climate adaptation and resilience on the ground.

Wildfire Forecasting, Gas Price Oversight, and Other Legislation

Posted by Brad Johnson Wed, 25 May 2022 14:00:00 GMT

U.S. Senator Maria Cantwell (D-Wash.), Chair of the Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation, will convene an Executive Session at 10 a.m. EDT on Wednesday, May 25, 2022, to consider several pieces of legislation.

  • S. 1472 Improving Spectrum Coordination Act
  • S. 4101 Combating Human Rights Abuses Act of 2022
  • S. 4109 National R&D Strategy for Distributed Ledger Technology Act of 2022
  • S. 4217 Transportation Fuel Market Transparency Act
  • S. 4237 Fire Ready Nation Act of 2022
  • S. 4246 Advanced Aviation Infrastructure Modernization Act

The Transportation Fuel Market Transparency Act creates the Transportation Fuel Monitoring and Enforcement Unit in the FTC, whose responsibilities would include “Determining whether excessive concentration or exclusive control of energy-related infrastructure may allow or result in anti-competitive behaviors.”

Markup of PRECISE Act, SUSTAINS Act, Supply Chain Legislation

Posted by Brad Johnson Tue, 17 May 2022 18:00:00 GMT

Full Committee on Agriculture – Business Meeting to consider:
  • The Budget Views and Estimates Letter of the Committee on Agriculture for the agencies and programs under the jurisdiction of the Committee for Fiscal Year 2023;
  • H.R. 7764, A bill to direct the Secretary of Agriculture to provide additional payments under the environmental quality incentives program for implementation of a nutrient management practice, and for other purposes. ;
  • H.R. 2518, “Producing Responsible Energy and Conservation Incentives and Solutions for the Environment Act or the PRECISE Act”;
  • H.R. 2606, “Sponsoring USDA Sustainability Targets in Agriculture to Incentivize Natural Solutions Act of 2021, or the ‘SUSTAINS’ Act”;
  • H.R. 4140, “Butcher Block Act”;
  • H.R. 7675, To amend the Department of Agriculture Reorganization Act of 1994 to establish an Agricultural and Food System Supply Chain Resilience and Crisis Response Task Force, and for other purposes.;
  • H.R. 7606, “Meat and Poultry Special Investigator Act of 2022”;
  • H.R. 7763, To direct the Secretary of Agriculture to support and incentivize domestic activities to address fertilizer shortages and deficiencies, diversity fertilizer sources, and reduce depending on foreign sources for fertilizer, and other purposes;
  • H.R. 7765, “American Food Supply Chain Resiliency Act of 2022”

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