Build Back Better Markup: Judiciary (Immigration and Community Violence Provisions)

Posted by Brad Johnson Mon, 13 Sep 2021 14:00:00 GMT

Markup of legislative proposals to comply with the reconciliation directive included in section 2002 of the Concurrent Resolution on the Budget for Fiscal Year 2022 (S. Con. Res. 14)

  • Committee Print 117-2: Legislative proposals to comply with the reconciliation directive included in section 2002 of the Concurrent Resolution on the Budget for Fiscal Year 2022

To consider a proposal to satisfy the Committee’s reconciliation instructions required by S. Con. Res. 14 (Day 2)

Posted by Brad Johnson Mon, 13 Sep 2021 12:00:00 GMT

Continuation of the House Agriculture Committee’s Build Back Better markup.

Included in this package are multiple bipartisan proposals will provide resources to mitigate climate change, improve quality of life in rural communities, and commit millions of dollars to agricultural education across the country.

Investments include:
  • $7.75 billion in investments in agricultural research and infrastructure; other countries like China are outspending the US on research investments and this money will help close the gap.
  • $18 billion in rural job-promoting investments to ensure those living in rural America, on tribal lands, and our insular areas have access to clean water and reliable and efficient renewable energy. This funding will also support investment in renewable biofuels infrastructure important to farmers and our fight against climate change, and flexible funding for rural community growth.
  • $40 billion in investments in forestry programs to help combat forest fires and contribute to healthy, resilient forests, including $14 billion for “hazardous fuels reduction,” and $4.5 billion for the Civilian Climate Corps for “managing National Forest System land” and “rural and urban conservation and tree planting projects”.
  • $300 million divided equally to the Forest Service for the following six climate-related projects:
    • to carry out greenhouse gas life cycle analyses of domestic wood products
    • to assess the quantity of carbon sequestration and storage accomplished by different forest practices when applied in diverse ecological and geographic settings
    • to accelerate and expand existing research efforts relating to strategies to increase carbon stocks on National Forest System land
    • to accelerate and expand existing research efforts relating to the impacts of climate change and weather variability on national forest ecosystems
    • to accelerate and expand existing research efforts relating to strategies to ensure that national forest ecosystems, including forests, plants, aquatic ecosystems, and wildlife, are able to adapt to climate change and weather variability
    • for activities and tactics to reduce the spread of invasive species on non-Federal forested land

Committee Print

All of the proposed amendments, all of which were submitted by Republicans, were voted down on party lines. The bill was approved also on party lines.

Proposal to satisfy the Committee’s reconciliation instructions required by S. Con. Res. 14

Posted by Brad Johnson Fri, 10 Sep 2021 17:00:00 GMT

The House Committee on Agriculture will hold a business meeting to consider the elements of the reconciliation package under their jurisdiction.

Included in this package are multiple bipartisan proposals will provide resources to mitigate climate change, improve quality of life in rural communities, and commit millions of dollars to agricultural education across the country.

Investments include:
  • $7.75 billion in investments in agricultural research and infrastructure; other countries like China are outspending the US on research investments and this money will help close the gap.
  • $18 billion in rural job-promoting investments to ensure those living in rural America, on tribal lands, and our insular areas have access to clean water and reliable and efficient renewable energy. This funding will also support investment in renewable biofuels infrastructure important to farmers and our fight against climate change, and flexible funding for rural community growth.
  • $40 billion in investments in forestry programs to help combat forest fires and contribute to healthy, resilient forests, including $14 billion for “hazardous fuels reduction,” and $4.5 billion for the Civilian Climate Corps for “managing National Forest System land” and “rural and urban conservation and tree planting projects”.
  • $300 million divided equally to the Forest Service for the following six climate-related projects:
    • to carry out greenhouse gas life cycle analyses of domestic wood products
    • to assess the quantity of carbon sequestration and storage accomplished by different forest practices when applied in diverse ecological and geographic settings
    • to accelerate and expand existing research efforts relating to strategies to increase carbon stocks on National Forest System land
    • to accelerate and expand existing research efforts relating to the impacts of climate change and weather variability on national forest ecosystems
    • to accelerate and expand existing research efforts relating to strategies to ensure that national forest ecosystems, including forests, plants, aquatic ecosystems, and wildlife, are able to adapt to climate change and weather variability
    • for activities and tactics to reduce the spread of invasive species on non-Federal forested land

Committee Print

Committee Print, providing for reconciliation pursuant to S. Con. Res. 14

Posted by Brad Johnson Thu, 09 Sep 2021 14:00:00 GMT

The Committee on Small Business will hold a hybrid markup at 10:00 A.M. (EDT) on Thursday, September 9, 2021, in Room 2360 of the Rayburn House Office Building and on Zoom. Members who wish to participate remotely may do so via Zoom, information to be provided separately. The Committee will consider Committee Print (providing for reconciliation pursuant to S. Con. Res. 14, the Concurrent Resolution on the Budget for Fiscal Year 2022).

Markup notice and information on filing amendments

Committee Print

Chair’s Amendment in the Nature of a Substitute

Includes provision for $2.1 billion in federal debentures to back small-business loans to acquire renewable energy equipment such as solar panels, wind turbines, or battery storage.

Full Committee Markup of Reconciliation Budget Plan, Continued

Posted by Brad Johnson Thu, 09 Sep 2021 14:00:00 GMT

On Thursday, September 9, 2021, at 10:00 a.m. EDT via Webex, and livestreamed on the Committee’s YouTube pages, the Committee on Natural Resources will meet to consider the following postponed recorded votes that were requested at the Committee’s most recent business meeting, and to continue its consideration on legislative proposals to comply with the reconciliation directive included in section 2002 of the Concurrent Resolution on the Budget for Fiscal Year 2022, S. Con. Res.14.


The votes will be on the following Republican amendments:
  • Rep. Lauren Boebert (R-CO) amendment designated Boebert #2
  • Rep. Lauren Boebert amendment designated Boebert #3
  • Rep. Lauren Boebert amendment designated Boebert #4
  • Rep. Lauren Boebert amendment designated Boebert #5
  • Rep. Jerry L. Carl (R-AL) amendment designated Carl #1
  • Rep. Jerry L. Carl amendment designated Carl #2
  • Rep. Don Young (R-AK) amendment designated Young #1
  • Rep. Tom Tiffany (R-WI) amendment designated Tiffany #1
  • Rep. Jenniffer González Colón (R-PR) amendment designated González Colón #1
  • Rep. Blake Moore (R-UT) amendment designated Moore #1
  • Rep. Blake Moore (R-UT) amendment designated Moore #2
  • Rep. Blake Moore (R-UT) amendment designated Moore #3
  • Rep. Jenniffer González Colón (R-PR) amendment designated González Colón #2

The committee will then vote on the legislation put forward by the committee chair.

Committee Print to comply with the reconciliation directive included in section 2002 of the Concurrent Resolution on the Budget for Fiscal Year 2022, S. Con. Res. 14

Posted by Brad Johnson Thu, 09 Sep 2021 14:00:00 GMT

The hearing will be conducted via teleconference.

Text of the Science Committee Print and the Amendment in the Nature of a Substitute by Chair Eddie Bernice Johnson.

The proposed $45.4 billion Science Committee ANS includes:

Department of Energy ($20.6 billion)
  • $5 billion for regional innovation initiatives
  • $10.4 billion for the Department of Energy Office of Science laboratories, including $1.3 billion for the ITER fusion project
  • $349 million for the Department of Energy Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy for NREL projects including the new EMAPS program and ARIES grid simulation
  • $408 million for the Department of Energy Office of Nuclear Energy
  • $20 million for the Department of Energy Office of Fossil Energy and Carbon Management
  • $1.08 billion in general funds for Department of Energy National Laboratories, including
    • $377 million for Office of Science
    • $210 million for Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy
    • $40 million for Office of Nuclear Energy
    • $190 million for Office of Fossil Energy and Carbon Management
    • $102 million for the Office of Environmental Management
  • $2 billion for fusion research and development
  • $1.1 billion for Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy demonstration projects, including wind, solar, geothermal, hydropower, vehicles, bioenergy, and building technologies
  • $70 million for a new Clean Energy Manufacturing Innovation Institute
  • $52.5 million for university nuclear reactor research
  • $10 million for demonstration projects on reducing the environmental impacts of fracking wastewater
  • $20 million for the Office of Economic Impact and Diversity
  • $50 million for the Office of the Inspector General
Environmental Protection Agency
  • $264 million to conduct environmental research and development activities related to climate change, including environmental justice
FEMA
  • $798 million for Assistance to Firefighters Grants
NASA ($4.4 billion)
  • $4 billion for infrastructure and maintenance
  • $388 million for climate change research and development
NIST ($4.2 billion)
  • $1.2 billion for scientific and technical research, including resilience to natural hazards including wildfires, and greenhouse gas and other climate-related measurement
  • $2 billion for American manufacturing support
  • $1 billion for infrastructure and maintenance
NOAA ($4.2 billion)
  • $1.2 billion for weather, ocean, and climate research and forecasting
  • $265 million to develop and distribute actionable climate information for communities in an equitable manner
  • $500 million to recruit, educate, and train a “climate-ready” workforce
  • $70 million for high-performance computing
  • $224 million for phased-array radar research and development
  • $1 billion for hurricane hunter aircraft and radar systems
  • $12 million for drone missions
  • $743 million for deferred maintenance
  • $173 million for space weather
National Science Foundation ($10.95 billion)
  • $3.4 billion for infrastructure, including Antarctic bases – $300 million for minority-serving institutions
  • $7.5 billion for research grants, including at least $400 million for climate change research and $700 million for minority-serving institutions
  • $50 million for Office of the Inspector General
Introduced amendments:

House Working To Write and Pass the $3.5 Trillion Build Back Better Act Reconciliation Package

Posted by Brad Johnson Tue, 07 Sep 2021 19:31:00 GMT

The House of Representatives has begun a whirlwind effort to pass the $3.5 trillion “human infrastructure” reconciliation bill known as the Build Back Better Act this month. Practically every committee in the House has some component of the bill, known formally as S. Con. Res. 14, the Concurrent Resolution on the Budget for Fiscal Year 2022, under its jurisdiction.

The House Committee on Natural Resources, chaired by Rep. Raul Grijalva (D-N.Mex.), was the first to handle its section, with a full-day markup last week. The committee will meet again this Thursday to vote on a few Republican amendments before final consideration of its bill.

The largest elements of the bill, dealing with health care, child care, and retirement, are being handled by the House Committee on Ways and Means, chaired by corporate ally Rep. Richard Neal (D-Mass.). They have two days of markup planned for this Thursday and Friday.

The Science Committee, Education and Labor Committee, and Small Business Committee also are conducting their markups on Thursday.

The Agriculture Committee is holding its markup on Friday.

The committee-approved Natural Resources bill includes:
  • $3 billion to support the Civilian Climate Corps through the Department of the Interior
  • $1 billion for tribal climate resilience and adaptation
  • $900 million for national wildfire management
  • $500 million for a unique Tribal Civilian Climate Corps
  • $225 million for climate resilience and restoration
  • $100 million for mitigating climate-induced weather events
  • $100 million for tribal wildfire management
  • $2.7 billion for overdue Indian water rights settlements
  • $2.5 billion to clean up abandoned hardrock mines and redevelop them for productive use
  • $2 billion for health facility construction, maintenance, and improvement in Indian Country
  • $993 million for hospitals and health infrastructure in U.S. territories
  • $500 million for tribal housing improvements

The proposed $45.4 billion Science Committee bill includes:

Department of Energy ($20.6 billion)
  • $5 billion for regional innovation initiatives
  • $10.4 billion for the Department of Energy Office of Science laboratories, including $1.3 billion for the ITER fusion project
  • $349 million for the Department of Energy Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy for NREL projects including the new EMAPS program and ARIES grid simulation
  • $408 million for the Department of Energy Office of Nuclear Energy
  • $20 million for the Department of Energy Office of Fossil Energy and Carbon Management
  • $1.08 billion in general funds for Department of Energy National Laboratories, including
    • $377 million for Office of Science
    • $210 million for Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy
    • $40 million for Office of Nuclear Energy
    • $190 million for Office of Fossil Energy and Carbon Management
    • $102 million for the Office of Environmental Management
  • $2 billion for fusion research and development
  • $1.1 billion for Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy demonstration projects, including wind, solar, geothermal, hydropower, vehicles, bioenergy, and building technologies
  • $70 million for a new Clean Energy Manufacturing Innovation Institute
  • $52.5 million for university nuclear reactor research
  • $10 million for demonstration projects on reducing the environmental impacts of fracking wastewater
  • $20 million for the Office of Economic Impact and Diversity
  • $50 million for the Office of the Inspector General
Environmental Protection Agency
  • $264 million to conduct environmental research and development activities related to climate change, including environmental justice
FEMA
  • $798 million for Assistance to Firefighters Grants
NASA ($4.4 billion)
  • $4 billion for infrastructure and maintenance
  • $388 million for climate change research and development
NIST ($4.2 billion)
  • $1.2 billion for scientific and technical research, including resilience to natural hazards including wildfires, and greenhouse gas and other climate-related measurement
  • $2 billion for American manufacturing support
  • $1 billion for infrastructure and maintenance
NOAA ($4.2 billion)
  • $1.2 billion for weather, ocean, and climate research and forecasting
  • $265 million to develop and distribute actionable climate information for communities in an equitable manner
  • $500 million to recruit, educate, and train a “climate-ready” workforce
  • $70 million for high-performance computing
  • $224 million for phased-array radar research and development
  • $1 billion for hurricane hunter aircraft and radar systems
  • $12 million for drone missions
  • $743 million for deferred maintenance
  • $173 million for space weather
National Science Foundation ($10.95 billion)
  • $3.4 billion for infrastructure, including Antarctic bases – $300 million for minority-serving institutions
  • $7.5 billion for research grants, including at least $400 million for climate change research and $700 million for minority-serving institutions
  • $50 million for Office of the Inspector General
The Small Business Committee bill includes, among many other programs:
  • $2.1 billion to back upwards of $4.2 billion in small-business loans to purchase renewable energy equipment, including solar panels, wind turbines, and battery storage
The Education & Labor Committee bill includes:
  • roughly $450 billion in lowering the cost of child care and securing universal pre-K for three- and four-year-olds
  • $111 billion to lower the cost of higher education
  • $82 billion in America’s public school infrastructure, for safe, healthy, energy efficient, and environmentally resilient public school facilities
  • nearly $80 billion in workforce development programs
  • nearly $35 billion in child nutrition programs

Full Committee Markup of Reconciliation Budget Plan

Posted by Brad Johnson Thu, 02 Sep 2021 14:00:00 GMT

On Thursday, September 2, 2021, at 10:00 a.m. EDT via Cisco Webex and livestreamed on the Committee’s YouTube page, the Committee on Natural Resources will meet to consider legislative proposals to comply with the reconciliation directive included in section 2002 of the Concurrent Resolution on the Budget for Fiscal Year 2022, S. Con. Res.14.

At the markup, the Committee will decide on provisions in the bill that will raise revenue and protect American taxpayers from unnecessary industry subsidies and giveaways.

The markup is expected to include:
  • $3 billion to support the Civilian Climate Corps through the Department of the Interior
  • $1 billion for tribal climate resilience and adaptation
  • $900 million for national wildfire management
  • $500 million for a unique Tribal Civilian Climate Corps
  • $225 million for climate resilience and restoration
  • $100 million for mitigating climate-induced weather events
  • $100 million for tribal wildfire management
  • $2.7 billion for overdue Indian water rights settlements
  • $2.5 billion to clean up abandoned hardrock mines and redevelop them for productive use
  • $2 billion for health facility construction, maintenance, and improvement in Indian Country
  • $993 million for hospitals and health infrastructure in U.S. territories
  • $500 million for tribal housing improvements

Download the bill text here.

With "No Double-Dip" Deal, Biden Has Quietly Acquiesced To Enormous Climate Justice Cuts In Infrastructure Plans

Posted by Brad Johnson Tue, 31 Aug 2021 19:20:00 GMT


Pres. Biden announces bipartisan infrastructure deal with eight of the 21 white U.S. Senators who negotiated the package.
With the so-called “no double-dip” rule, President Biden and 21 senators have negotiated a deal on the Build Back Better agenda that threatens several of his major climate and racial justice initiatives. The senators, all of whom are white, protected industry priorities in their deal.

At risk include programs for restoring minority neighborhoods cleaved by racially unjust highway projects, cut 96 percent, and for replacing all the lead water pipes in the nation, cut 67 percent.

In May, Biden proposed $6 trillion in public investment ($5 trillion in new spending) over ten years, in the form of the $2.3 trillion American Jobs Plan, a $1.9 trillion American Families Plan, and about $1.5 trillion more in other spending.

Biden’s proposed plan was significantly smaller than that advocated by Green New Dealers, who called for $10 trillion in spending over ten years to build a just and sustainable economy.

After months of Senate negotiations, Biden’s plan was cut down to about $4.5 trillion, broken into two legislative components – a $1 trillion ($550 billion in new spending) bipartisan “physical infrastructure” package passed by the Senate by a filibuster-proof majority, and a $3.5-trillion reconciliation package intended to pass with only Democratic votes.

The bipartisan package is a fully detailed bill, while the reconciliation package, at least publicly, remains a top-level skeleton that remains to be fleshed out.

The bipartisan package includes nearly the full amounts requested by Biden for traditional fossil-fuel-intensive infrastructure: $110 billion for roads and bridges, $25 billion for airports, and $17 billion for waterways and ports. In addition, there is $16 billion to bail out oil and gas companies to clean up their abandoned wells.

The “double-dip” deal is this: any initiative which received any monies in the bipartisan package cannot receive more in the reconciliation package. As Politico reported on June 30:
The president said something really important the other day and nobody noticed. At his press conference celebrating the bipartisan infrastructure deal, Joe Biden suggested there would be no coming back for seconds: When it comes to spending on basic physical infrastructure (for roads, bridges, public transportation, etc.), the bipartisan deal is it. There will be no using the parallel, Democrats-only reconciliation package to spend more on those things than Republicans agreed to.

Instead, Biden indicated, the reconciliation bill is exclusively for stuff that Democrats want but Republicans oppose — like spending for family care, climate change and health care.

This may seem like a minor point, but it has big implications. On the left, some progressives have argued that they would simply add to the reconciliation bill anything that wasn’t fully funded in the bipartisan bill. That’s not happening. Biden wanted $157 billion for electric vehicles. The bipartisan bill spends $15 billion. He wanted $100 billion for broadband, and he secured $65 billion. From the White House’s perspective, these issues are now resolved and the reconciliation bill can’t be used to take another crack at them.

We checked with the White House, and officials confirmed that this interpretation is correct.

On the right, some conservatives have argued that voting for the bipartisan deal is pointless because Democrats will simply take what they can get from Republicans on highway spending or airports and then get the rest in the reconciliation bill.

But what’s actually happening is that the bipartisan bill is serving as a brake on what Biden can spend on core infrastructure.

In July, the Senate’s bipartisan package whittled $2.6 billion of Biden’s planned new spending down to $550 billion. Left out completely were major components of Biden’s plan that likely will be taken up in the reconciliation package, including housing, schools, clean energy tax credits, and home and community-based care.

However, because of the “no double-dip” deal Biden and the Senate negotiators made, the following programs face massive cuts that can’t be restored unless the deal is broken:
  • Reconnecting minority communities cut off by highway projects, cut 96% from $24 billion to $1 billion
  • Replacing the nation’s lead pipes, cut 67% from $45 billion to $15 billion
  • Investing in electric school buses, cut 87% from $20 billion to $2.5 billion
  • Repairing and modernizing public transit, cut 54% from $85 billion to $39 billion
  • Building electric vehicle charging stations, cut 50% from $15 billion to $7.5 billion
  • Upgrading and modernizing America’s drinking water, wastewater, and stormwater systems, cut 46% from $56 billion to $30 billion
  • Road safety, including “vision zero” programs to protect pedestrians, cut 45% from $20 billion to $11 billion
  • Broadband infrastructure, cut 35% from $100 billion to $65 billion
  • Investing in passenger and freight rail, cut 18% from $80 billion to $66 billion

This overall cut of nearly half of $441 billion in proposed spending disproportionately targets the urban and rural poor and minority “environmental justice” communities, despite the Biden administration’s stated plans of achieving justice through intentional spending. Biden’s plan was about one-third of what Green New Deal advocates have said is needed for these initiatives.

The Green New Deal Network, a coalition of over 100 organizations, is advocating for the restoration of these funds.

House Transportation Committee chair Peter DeFazio (D-Ore.) is intending to challenge the “no double-dip” deal for programs under his jurisdiction, including high-speed rail, connecting neighborhoods, and water systems.

In contrast, the all-white team of 21 U.S. Senators who crafted this deal, led by Sen. Kyrsten Sinema (D-Ariz.) and Rob Portman (R-Ohio), approved Biden’s requested spending levels for highways, airports, waterways, and major bailouts for industrial polluters responsible for chemical and fracking cleanups.

Meeting with Governors on 2021 Wildfires

Posted by Brad Johnson Fri, 30 Jul 2021 15:45:00 GMT

The President and The Vice President meet with Governors to discuss ongoing efforts to strengthen wildfire prevention, preparedness and response efforts, and hear firsthand about the ongoing impacts of the 2021 wildfire season, which are growing more severe.

From CNN:
The virtual meeting will last an hour with governors whose states are experiencing wildfires and drought: Govs. Greg Gianforte of Montana, Jay Inslee of Washington, Gavin Newsom of California, Brad Little of Idaho, Kate Brown of Oregon, Tim Walz of Minnesota and Mark Gordon of Wyoming.

Biden and Harris will discuss efforts to strengthen wildfire prevention, preparedness, mitigation and response efforts, and will hear how an early and severe wildfire season is impacting residents and land in the states. The group is also expected to discuss funding and investing in wildland firefighters, including increasing pay for federal firefighters who are battling blazes, and extending hiring for temporary firefighters.

The White House on Friday will also announce two new interagency working groups pointed at the impact wildfires and extreme heat. Biden’s National Climate Task force, which is chaired by National Climate Advisor Gina McCarthy, will announce a Wildfire Resilience Interagency Working Group, and an Extreme Heat Interagency Working Group.

The Wildfire Resilience Interagency Group will be chaired by US Department of Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack and Secretary of the Interior Deb Haaland, while the Extreme Heat Interagency Working Group will be chaired by Health and Human Services Secretary Xavier Becerra, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration Administrator Dr. Richard Spinrad, and Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Michael Regan. There are 82 large fires burning in the West this week. Around 3.4 million acres have been burned in wildfires so far this year.

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