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Legislative Update

Senate. Among the nominations on the Senate’s agenda this week is that of Lina Khan to be a Federal Trade Commissioner. Khan’s confirmation, in turn, could clear the way for the Senate to vote on Rohit Chopra to head the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau. Chopra is currently one of two Democratic commissioners at the FTC, where there is one vacancy, resulting in a 2D/2R line-up.

House. The House will vote on H.R. 1187, a package of five Financial Service Committee bills dealing with environmental, social, and governance (ESG) disclosure requirements for public companies. The measure would require public companies to disclose financial risks related to climate change and certain information regarding executive pay increases and political expenditures. Also, multinational companies would be required to disclose taxes they pay on a country-by-country basis. Given the lack of Republican support in the committee for these proposals, the House package is unlikely to garner 60 votes in the Senate.

House Procedures. Beginning this week, fully vaccinated House Members and staff do not have to wear masks. However, masks are still required for non-vaccinated individuals, according to an 18-page memo issued June 11 by the Office of the Attending Physician. In a message sharing the updated mask guidance, Majority Leader Steny Hoyer also advised Members that floor votes will now be open for a total of 20 minutes, and voting groups will no longer be implemented. Proxy voting is still allowed, but the latest extension of that process is set to expire on July 3. There is speculation that proxy voting will not be extended, but there has been no announcement from Democratic leadership.

FY 2022 Appropriations. House Budget Chairman John Yarmouth (D-Ky.) today unveiled what’s known as a deeming resolution that will clear the way for House Appropriations subcommittees to begin work on FY 2022 spending bills. The resolution, which temporarily takes the place of a budget resolution, deems that discretionary spending will be set at $1.5 trillion, the level proposed by the President’s budget. It does not set separate levels for defense and non-defense spending. The House will vote on the deeming resolution this evening as part of a rule on unrelated legislation (H.R. 1187 and H.R. 256).

House and Senate consideration of an FY 2022 budget resolution has been delayed by, among other things, the late release of the President’s budget and the lack of a clear-cut plan by Democrats on how they want to proceed with reconciliation instructions that will be part of the resolution. By July, both chambers are expected to be ready to vote on a budget resolution, but until that is approved, the deeming resolution will allow the House appropriators to begin their work.

Appropriations Chair Rosa DeLauro (D-Conn.) has said she wants to mark up the 12 FY 2022 spending bills in June, ahead of July floor votes. Her Senate counterpart, Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) said Friday he wants to start marking up in July. However, there is no expectation that Congress will approve appropriations bills by the Oct. 1 start of the new fiscal year, thereby necessitating a continuing resolution to keep the government open.

Committee Action of Note:

  • Tuesday, June 15:
    • House Natural Resources Committee Hearing: "Environmental Justice for Coal Country: Supporting Communities Through the Energy Transition."
    • House Financial Services Committee Hearing: Task Force on Financial Technology: Digitizing the Dollar: Investigating the Technological Infrastructure, Privacy, and Financial Inclusion Implications of Central Bank Digital Currencies.
    • Senate Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs Committee Hearing to examine 21st century communities, focusing on local leaders on the infrastructure needs facing America's states, cities, and towns.
    • House Energy and Commerce Subcommittee on Health Hearing: “Booster Shot: Enhancing Public Health through Vaccine Legislation.”
    • House Transportation and Infrastructure Subcommittee on Coast Guard and Maritime Transportation: Hearing: “Impacts of Shipping Container Shortages, Delays, and Increased Demand on the North American Supply Chain.”
    • House Ways and Means Subcommittee on Social Security: Equity in Social Security: In Their Own Words.
    • House Homeland Security Subcommittee on Cybersecurity, Infrastructure Protection, and Innovation Hearing: Cyber Threats in the Pipeline: Lessons from the Federal Response to the Colonial Pipeline Ransomware Attack.
    • Senate Judiciary Subcommittee on Competition Policy, Antitrust, and Consumer Rights Hearing to examine protecting competition and innovation in home technologies.
  • Wednesday, June 16:
    • Senate Finance Committee Hearing on the President’s Fiscal Year 2022 Budget with Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen.
    • House Education and Labor Committee Hearing: Examining the Policies and Priorities of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services with HHS Secretary Xavier Becerra.
    • House Agriculture Committee Hearing: “1890 Land Grant Institutions: Investing for Agricultural Resiliency, Equity, and Global Impact.”
    • House Financial Services Subcommittee on Housing, Community Development, and Insurance Hearing: Flexible Federal Funding: Examining the Community Development Block Grant Program and Its Impact on Addressing Local Challenges.
    • Senate Appropriations Subcommittee on Military Construction and Veterans Affairs, and Related Agencies Hearing to examine proposed budget estimates and justification for fiscal year 2022 for military construction and family housing.
    • House Transportation and Infrastructure Subcommittee on Aviation Hearing: “Starships and Stripes Forever – An Examination of the FAA’s Role in the Future of Spaceflight."
    • House Financial Services Subcommittee on National Security, International Development, and Monetary Policy Hearing: Schemes and Subversion: How Bad Actors and Foreign Governments Undermine and Evade Sanctions Regimes.
    • Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Subcommittee on Governmental Operations and Border Management Hearing to examine improving security, trade, and travel at land ports of entry at the southwest border.
  • Thursday, June 17:
    • House Ways and Means Committee Hearing: President's Proposed Fiscal Year 2022 Budget with Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen.
    • Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions Committee Hearing to examine COVID-19 response and recovery, focusing on supporting the needs of students in higher education and lessons on safely returning to campus.
    • Senate Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs Committee hearing to examine reauthorization of the National Flood Insurance Program.

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