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The Latest: A Weekly Federal Update (05/30/22)



Upcoming Events & Activities

May 30th, 2021 - June 3rd, 2022

All events in Eastern Daylight Time


Monday, May 30th

Memorial Day


Tuesday, May 31st

No events to report.


Wednesday, June 1st

No events to report.


Thursday, June 2nd

10:00 AM - House Judiciary Committee: Markup hearing on H.R. , the "Protecting Our Kids Act"


5:00 PM - Bipartisan Policy Center: Webinar titled, "The Outlook for Social Security"


Friday, June 3rd

No events to report.

 

Energy, Water & Environment

The latest from the House and Senate Committees on energy (infrastructure), WIFIA, wastewater management, environmental issues, interior, or environmental justice.

Legislation

H.R. 7861, To require manufacturers of PFAS to submit analytical reference standards to the EPA

Sponsor: Rep. John Sarbanes (D-MD-03) referred to Energy & Commerce Committee Date Introduced: May 27, 2022


H.R. 7871, To amend the Internal Revenue Code of 1986 to repeal fossil fuel subsidies for oil companies and to establish gas price rebates to individuals for 2022

Sponsor: Rep. A. Donald McEachin (D-VA-04) referred to Ways & Means Committee Date Introduced: May 24, 2022


News

Reuters: Summer Fuels Shortages Loom Over Europe, IEA Chief Warns

On May 31st, Fatih Birol, the head of the International Energy Agency, warned that Europe could face fuel shortages this summer due to squeezed oil markets. Birol also warned that the current energy crisis was "much bigger" than the oil shocks of the 1970s and that it would also last longer, according to the report. "Back then it was just about oil," Birol told Spiegel. "Now we have an oil crisis, a gas crisis and an electricity crisis simultaneously."


Politico: Russia Halts Gas Supply to the Netherlands

On May 31st, Russia's Gazprom confirmed that it was "completely suspend[ing] gas supplies" to Dutch company to GasTerra "due to failure to pay in rubles" per the Kremlin's demands. The Dutch climate ministry says no supply interruptions to customers are expected.


WaPo: European Union Agrees to Phase out Russian Oil, Exempts Pipeline Deliveries

On May 30th, European Union countries finally reached a deal to wean themselves off Russian oil, their most significant effort yet to hit the Russian economy over the war in Ukraine, although the impact will be softened by an exemption for pipeline oil, a concession to landlocked holdouts, notably Hungary. After weeks of negotiations, the 27 countries agreed Monday to end seaborne deliveries of Russian oil within months. Pipeline deliveries will continue to flow for now. Several countries will also get extensions or exemptions, according to E.U. officials and diplomats.

 

Transportation & Infrastructure

The latest from the House and Senate Committees on industrial and commercial mechanical insulation, cybersecurity, electric vehicle charging, supply chains, port authority, metropolitan transit, or airports.

Legislation

H.R. 7863, To require the Director of the Office of Management & Budget to issue guidance with respect to natural disaster resilience

Sponsor: Rep. Troy Carter (D-LA-02) referred to Oversight & Reform Committee

Date Introduced: May 24, 2022


News

WSJ: "My Plan for Fighting Inflation" - Joe Biden

On May 30th, President Joe Biden released an opinion piece in the Wall Street Journal to delineate his plan to combat persistent inflation. Biden asserts that inflation is exacerbated by Russian President Vladimir Putin's unprovoked invasion into Ukraine worsening energy markets and supply chains still have not fully recovered from the Covid pandemnic's disruption.

 

Immigration & Detention

The latest from the House and Senate Committee on immigration, detention, homeland security, border security, asylum seekers, criminal justice reform, Intensive Supervision Appearance Program (ISAP), U.S. Marshal Service (USMS), alternatives to detention programming, reentry programming, or Bureau of Prisons.

Legislation

H.R. 7867, To eliminate employment-based visa caps on abused, abandoned, and neglected children eligible for humanitarian status

Sponsor: Rep. Jimmy Gomez (D-CA-34) referred to Judiciary Committee

Date Introduced: May 24, 2022


News

RollCall: DoJ Sess 'Gamesmanship' in Latest Immigration Clash with Texas

Texas asked a federal judge on Monday to block a Biden administration overhaul of asylum processing at the border just days before the rule is set to take effect, a move the Justice Department criticized as “gamesmanship.” The Biden administration wants more time to defend the new rule that is set to start phasing in on May 31, in the latest legal clash with a Republican-led state over changes to immigration policies. The rule, finalized in late March, would allow asylum officers to approve migrants’ claims for protection after they cross the border, rather than sending all asylum-seekers into the backlogged immigration court system for judges to approve their claims.

 

Public Health & Safety

The latest from House and Senate committees on health insurance, COVID-19 and testing, gun safety, Medicare & Medicaid, telehealth, Children's Health Insurance Program (CHIP), CDC, FDA, or rural hospitals.

Legislation

H.R. 7904, To expand to all firearms the requirement that Federal firearms licensees report sales of 2 or more handguns to the same unlicensed person within 5 consecutive business days

Sponsor: Rep. Norma Torres (D-CA-35) referred to Judiciary Committee

Date Introduced: May 27, 2022


H.R. 7876, To amend title XVIII of the Social Security Act to protect access to telehealth services under the Medicare program

Sponsor: Rep. Adrian Smith (R-NE-03) referred to Energy & Commerce; Ways & Means Committees

Date Introduced: May 24, 2022


News

CBS News: CDC Warns of COVID-19 "Rebound" After Taking Paxlovid

As COVID-19 cases continue to rise, Paxlovid is being prescribed to try to keep high-risk patients out of the hospital, but the Centers for Disease Control & Prevention is warning of potential "COVID-19 rebound" after a five-day course of the treatment. After a patient recovers, rebound has been reported to occur two to eight days later. Still, the CDC says the benefits of taking Paxlovid far outweigh the risks. Among unvaccinated people at high risk for severe disease, it reduced the risk of hospitalization and death by nearly 90%, according to the CDC. Possible causes are being investigated, but a small study suggested the symptoms are coming from the same virus and not a new infection. There is currently no evidence that additional treatment is needed, according to the CDC, and Pfizer, the maker of Paxlovid, is not changing its dosage guidelines. Pfizer said it is currently seeing a rebound rate of about 2%, but is continuing to monitor patients.

 

Finance & Federal Partnerships


The latest from House and Senate committees on taxation, retirement, small business, federal contracting, or monetary policy.

Legislation

H.R. 7831, To provide a deduction for certain charity care furnished by physicians

Sponsor: Rep. daniel Webster (R-FL-11) referred to Ways & Means Committee

Date Introduced: May 18, 2022


Updates from the Federal Register

EPA: Proposed Rule on Asbestos (Chrysotile Asbestos)

The Environmental Protection Agency is proposing a new rule under the Toxic Substances Control Act. The EPA is accepting comments until July 13, 2022.


FERC: Proposed Rule on Reporting Requirements for Interstate Natural Gas Pipelines

The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission is proposing to establish a rule to require natural gas pipelines to submit all supporting statements, schedules, and workpapers in native format, e.g. Microsoft Excel, with all links and formulas in tact when filing a Natural Gas Act section 4 rate case. FERC is receiving comments until June 24, 2022.

 

Special Reports


The latest reports, studies, and research issued from the Congressional Research Service (CRS), Government Accountability Office (GAO), public policy organization such as Resources for the Future (RFF), and others.
  • CRFB: May 25, 2022 - Analysis of CBO's May 2022 Budget and Economic Outlook

  • CRS: May 24, 2022 - Dynamic Scoring in the Congressional Budget Process

  • CRS: May 23, 2022 - Negotiation of Drug Prices in Medicare Part D

  • GAO: May 20, 2022 - Federal Actions Needed to Address Methane Emissions from Oil and Gas Development

  • GAO: May 26, 2022 - Actions Needed to Improve Processes for Overseeing Non-Mayor Acquisition Programs

  • RFF: May 26, 2022 - International Context of the Proposed Climate Disclosure Rule from the U.S> Securities & Exchange Commission