After two days of various floor votes on the Commerce, Justice & Science bill, the House passed it’s first FY13 appropriations bill. Before officially passing the C-J-S legislation, the House took up and adopted H.R. 5652, the Sequester Replacement Reconciliation Act. The legislation will serve as the budget for the House for FY2013.
The overall discretionary spending level contained in legislation is $19 billion below the level contained in the Budget Control Act of last year. It seeks to prevent the impending sequestration of the defense budget with cuts from mandatory domestic programs through the reconciliation process. However, the Senate will not take this path. There is an overall desire to not fall under the sequester rules that are pending in January, but a road out through both Houses is not clear at this point.
The House appears to be preparing itself for a vote on the first of the 12 FY13 appropriations bills this week. First up is the Commerce, Justice, Science bill, likely to be on the floor for amendments and votes starting today. Concerns remain as the House has an open rule on amendments, which could lead to major changes in the drafted legislation by Representatives who want to see substantially less funding invested in research. Attached you will find the current full committee draft of the House legislation.
Full Committee Mark Up of CJS
As of today, Congress (in particular, the House) has 16 days to come up with a solution to the ongoing debate about federal transportation spending. On Wednesday, March 14th, the Senate passed a bi-partisan 2 year bill, that would keep our transportation infrastructure/and public transit in operation. The House has to find a way to come to an agreement with Tea Party republicans who initially insisted on cutting public transportation funds. Our University Transportation Center at UD is funded through this authorization bill. We are keeping close tabs on this as it will have an impact on our transportation research, but also how it will impact each employee & students commute.
~Angie Anderson, Director of Federal Relations