APWA Government Affairs – October 23, 2018

October 23, 2017

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Senate Adopts FY18 Budget Resolution

  • Last week the Senate voted to adopt a Fiscal Year 2018 (FY18) budget resolution which House GOP leaders are expected to accept;
  • The agreement is expected to speed up the process for the proposed tax reform package being finalized by President Trump’s Administration;
  • The House and Senate tax-writing committees plan to release draft legislation by early November;
  • The agreement allows for more defense spending in the first year, in line with the House budget and eliminates House language to expedite $203 billion in entitlement savings, while leaving in place Senate language that would allow drilling in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge. The compromise would keep the Senate’s language allowing tax cuts that add up to $1.5 trillion to the deficit, not including the effects of economic growth;
  • The House is expected to take action on the budget resolution on Thursday, October 26.

President Trump Signs FEMA Relief Improvement Act into Law

  • Last week President Trump signed H.R. 1117, the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) Relief Improvement Act, introduced by Rep. Vicky Hartzler (R-MO), requiring FEMA to develop a plan to improve its guidance and record keeping for disaster funding;
  • Highlights of the legislation include FEMA providing consistent procedural guidance to disaster funding applicants during emergencies, the establishment of operating procedures for document retention through the life cycle of an emergency and easing the administrative burden for applicants and grantees by providing accurate assistance;
  • The text of H.R. 1117 can be viewed here.

Senate Scheduled to Vote on $36.5 Billion Disaster Measure

  • The Senate plans to vote on H.R. 2266, the Supplemental Appropriations for Disaster Relief Requirements Act of 2017, as early as today;
  • The legislation was introduced by House Appropriations Committee Chair Rodney Frelinghuysen (R-NJ) and passed by the House during the week of October 9;
  • The $36.5 billion aid package includes funding amounts of $18.7 billion for FEMA’s disaster relief fund, $16 billion to address national flood insurance program debt and $576.5 million for wildfire recovery efforts;
  • Pending Senate passage, the measure will then head to the President for his signature;
  • Click here to view the text of H.R. 2266.

FEMA Releases its 2017 National Preparedness Report

  • Last week, FEMA released its annual report assessing the state of the country’s disaster response capabilities;
  • The report is an annual requirement of S. 3721, The Post-Katrina Emergency Management Reform Act of 2006, which amended the Homeland Security Act of 2002 making extensive revisions to emergency response provisions while keeping  FEMA within the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) and a key element of the National Preparedness System;
  • The report evaluates and measures gains that individuals and communities, private and nonprofit sectors, faith-based organizations, and all levels of government have made in preparedness;
  • View the report here.


Senate and House Action Scheduled For the Week

  • On October 24 at 2:00pm ET, the House Subcommittee on Cybersecurity, Infrastructure Protection, & Security Technologies of the Committee on Homeland Security and the Subcommittee on Higher Education & Workforce Development of the Committee on Education & the Workforce will hold a joint hearing on Public-Private Solutions to Educating a Cyber Workforce–click here to watch live;
  • On October 25 at 10:00am ET, the Senate Committee on Environment & Public Works  will hold a hearing on a yet to be numbered bill on the Wildfire Prevention and Mitigation Act of 2017–more information can be found here;
  • On October 25 at 10:00 am ET, the Senate Committee on Environment & Public Works has scheduled a markup to consider the nominations of Michael Dourson, of Ohio, to be Assistant Administrator for Toxic Substances, and William L. Wehrum, of Delaware, Matthew Z. Leopold, of Florida, and David Ross, of Wisconsin, each to be an Assistant Administrator, all of the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), Paul Trombino III, of Wisconsin, to be Administrator of the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA), Department of Transportation, and Jeffery Martin Baran, of Virginia, to be a Member of the Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC);
  • On October 26 at 10:00am ET, the Senate Homeland Security & Governmental Affairs Subcommittee on Regulatory Affairs and Federal Management (RAFM) will hold a hearing regarding  “Improving Oversight of the Regulatory Process-Lessons from State Legislatures”– click here to watch live;
  • On October 26 at 10:00am ET, the Senate Committee on Energy & Natural Resources has a hearing scheduled to discuss Cyber Technology & Energy Infrastructure–follow live here.