Wednesday, March 20, 2013

In Congress

Continuing Resolution

Because Congress still has resolved budget debates and passed appropriations bills, it will need to pass another continuing resolution by March 27. The bill passed by the House of Representatives (H.R. 933) holds non-defense spending at the levels approved in Fiscal Year 2012.

One consequence of this is, at least for the time being, the increased spending on surface transportation programs included in MAP-21 will not be enacted. Senate leaders indicated that they might add transportation spending increases in that chamber.

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House, Senate Transportation Bills Differ

Budget proposals from the House of Representatives and the Senate differ greatly on transportation (as well as other issues). Mainly, the House budget cuts transportation funding, and the Senate budget increases it.

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Senate Questions Interior Secretary Nominee

The Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee posed questions to Sally Jewell, President Barack Obama’s nominee for Secretary of Interior. As you might expect, questions focused on energy development on federal lands and environmental protection related to such projects. Of particular concern was hydraulic fracturing (fracking) for natural gas production in western states and oil drilling in the Pacific Ocean and Alaska.

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