This week, the House of Representatives passed a bipartisan budget and debt ceiling agreement that removes sequestration, sets the framework for our appropriations process for the next two years, and suspends the debt ceiling until July 31, 2021. The House also passed the New Dem-endorsed Humanitarian Standards for Individuals in Customs and Border Protection Custody Act among other important priorities.
The NDC also sent a letter to President Trump urging him to recommit to working with Congress on comprehensive, bipartisan infrastructure legislation. The NDC also released a statement on the status of the discussions between Ambassador Lighthizer and the North America Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) Working Group.
More on what Members have been up to below.
- The NDC issued a statement on the status of the discussions between Ambassador Lighthizer and the North America Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) Working Group, encouraging continued communication and reiterating the Coalition’s commitment to working toward a bipartisan path forward.
- The NDC issued a statement following the House passage of a bipartisan budget and debt ceiling agreement that removes sequestration, sets the framework for our appropriations process for the next two years, and suspends the debt ceiling until July 31, 2021.
- The NDC released a statement following the House passage of Rep. Raul Ruiz’s (CA-36) Humanitarian Standards for Individuals in Customs and Border Protection Custody Act, which would establish basic humanitarian standards of care for individuals in CBP custody. Last week, NDC endorsed this bill.
- The NDC sent a letter to President Trump, led by Infrastructure Task Force Co-Chairs Stacey Plaskett, Salud Carbajal, Jason Crow, and Elissa Slotkin, urging him to recommit to working with Congress on comprehensive, bipartisan infrastructure legislation. Modernizing America’s aging infrastructure is essential to creating jobs, spurring economic growth, and increasing the nation’s global competitiveness. Last Congress, the New Dem Infrastructure Task Force set infrastructure priorities in Four Pillars of an Infrastructure Deal. Watch the New Dem Infrastructure Task Force speak on the need for infrastructure investment.
- The House passed Rep. Darren Soto’s (FL-25) Venezuela TPS Act of 2019, legislation which would designate Venezuela for ‘temporary protected status’ (TPS), protecting approximately 200,000 Venezuelan nationals in the United States from deportation.
- Reps. Debbie Mucarsel-Powell (FL-26), Debbie Wasserman Schultz (FL-23), Darren Soto (FL-09), and Donna Shalala (FL-27) held a press conference in support of the Venezuelan TPS Act.
- The House passed Rep. Scott Peters’ (CA-52) Disclosing Aid Spent to Ensure Relief (DISASTER) Act, which requires the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) to publish a single total of federal disaster relief funding, including all 29 accounts across 11 different federal agencies to increase transparency and accountability of federal expenses on disaster relief. The bill would also require OMB to use this data to produce a report for Congress that gives an estimate of disaster spending for the fiscal year.
- The House passed Rep. Brad Schneider’s (IL-10) bipartisan resolution condemning the Global Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions (BDS) Movement and reiterating Congress’s support for a two-state solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.
- The House passed Rep. Jennifer Wexton’s (VA-10) Expanding Findings for Federal Opioid Research and Treatment (EFFORT) Act, which directs the National Science Foundation (NSF) to support research on opioid addiction.
- The House passed Rep. Debbie Mucarsel-Powell’s (FL-26) bipartisan legislation which included the Coast Guard Shore Infrastructure Improvement Act to improve the well-being of servicemembers by helping to reduce and better manage the serious maintenance backlog for Coast Guard shore infrastructure.
- The House passed Rep. Gil Cisneros’ (CA-39) two veterans-related bills: the Helping Expand and Launch Transitional Health (HEALTH) for Women Veterans Act and the Providing Benefits Information in Spanish and Tagalog for Veterans and Families Act. These bills would expand access to benefits for veterans, servicemembers and their families.
- Rep. Gerry Connolly (VA-11) introduced the bipartisan Federal Risk and Authorization Management Program (FedRAMP) reform legislation. The FedRAMP Authorization Act of 2019 would codify FedRAMP, address agency compliance issues, provide funding for the FedRAMP Project Management Office (PMO) and Joint Authorization Board (JAB), and establish new metrics for proper implementation.
- Rep. Suzan DelBene (WA-01) introduced the Portable Benefits for Independent Workers Pilot Program Act and the Lifelong Learning and Training Account Act, which are intended to help Americans prepare for the future of work.
- Rep. Seth Moulton (MA-06) introduced the Automatic Listening Exploitation Act (ALEXA) to create recourse for consumers when the manufacturers of smart speakers with personal assistants and smart doorbells collect private conversations and data in violation of their terms of agreements. Read more in The Verge.
- Rep. Angie Craig (MN-02) introduced bipartisan legislation to create a low-interest loan program states to fund mitigation projects that reduce the risks and costs of natural disasters. The Resilience Revolving Loan Fund Act of 2019 has been informed by months of discussions with FEMA and local mayors, who have been affected by a severe flood season.
- Rep. Ben McAdams (UT-04) introduced the Fostering Innovation Act to provide commonsense regulatory relief for America’s growing companies, including many in the bioscience sector. The legislation is a narrow fix that allows small, emerging growth companies to keep public capital working to fund business needs, such as innovative medical research, rather than expensive regulatory filings.
- Rep. Sean Casten (IL-06) introduced the bipartisan, bicameral Clean Industrial Technology Act (CITA) to unleash innovation that will reduce greenhouse gas emissions from industrial sources and make American companies more competitive in the global economy.
- Rep. Susan Wild (PA-07) introduced the Mental Health in Schools Excellence Program Act. This legislation addresses the critical shortage of mental health professionals, like school psychologists, social workers, and counselors. Specifically, authorization is granted to establish partnerships between the Department of Education and eligible graduate programs to cover up to 100 percent of attendance costs for students who complete five years of service as a school-based mental health service provider.
- The Select Committee on the Modernization of Congress, Chaired by Rep. Derek Kilmer (WA-06) unanimously passed their second round of bipartisan congressional recommendations, crafted to provide key opportunities for staffing, technology, and accessibility reform in the U.S. House of Representatives. Read the list of recommendations.
- Rep. Terri Sewell (AL-07) met with Alabama stakeholders at UAB Hospital to discuss precision medicine and the state of rural hospitals.
- Rep. Susie Lee (NV-03) hosted a roundtable for southern Nevada student veterans at Touro University to discuss their education experiences and possible solutions to improve their lives and help them succeed in higher education and beyond.