Capitol Hill Update, 7 July, 2014
House & Senate/Schedule: Both chambers are back in town this week, and will remain in session for the next four weeks.
House/Spending: On Wednesday, the House will take up the Energy & Water Appropriations bill, H.R. 4923. This bill would spend $34.1 billion, most of which goes to fund the Department of Energy.
House/Taxes: The House will vote Friday on a bill, H.R. 4718, that would revive and make permanent a tax break that allows businesses to write off more than half of the costs of certain capital goods.
House/Job Training: The House is expected to pass the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act, H.R. 803, which would reauthorize federal job training programs through 2020. The bill does make some minor improvements, eliminating 15 inactive or redundant programs and placing some oversight constraints on others.
House & Senate/Transportation: The Federal Highway Trust Fund, which is the pool of money that is supposed to be used to fund the maintenance of federal highways, is close to going broke – perhaps as soon as August. Rather than simply bailing out the program, or raising the federal gas tax to fund it, FreedomWorks supports a proposal by Congressman Tom Graves (R-GA) and Senator Mike Lee (R-UT), to send highway funds back to the states. You can find our letter of support for the Lee/Graves Transportation Empowerment Act HERE.
Senate/Spending: Senate leaders are continuing to try to reach an agreement on a “minibus” spending bill that would combine funding for Commerce, Justice and Science, Transportation and Housing & Urban Development, and Agriculture/FDA.