Pending Legislation

Defense Set to Begin Arguments In Sandusky Trial

As expected, this week blew through the Columbus Day holiday and into a flurry of legislative activity. Dozens of bills went back and forth between the chambers this week, and many have already landed on the governor’s desk. Additionally, the Corbett administration announced a resolution in the five-year dispute over Mcare fund transfers and assessments.

Despite the long days and daily – sometimes multiple – Rules Committee meetings, there still isn’t quite enough time to get everything crossed off the legislative to-do list. While big-ticket items like pension reform and liquor privatization have fallen into the dust heap of this session’s history, the two chambers are wrapping up other last minute details, some of which stand to have significant impact in the areas of health care and human services, economic development and tax credits. Both the House and the Senate added a voting session day. Originally, the House and Senate were both to have adjourned until after the November 4 election as of Wednesday, but the Senate added Thursday, October 16 as a voting day, and the House added Monday, October 20.

Energy & Environment Update – September 2014 #3

Neurath Power Plant Rated Germany's Biggest CO2 Emitter

Congress has recessed until after the November elections, and we turn our attention this week to energy and climate issues on the Administration and international fronts.

The House approved the continuing resolution (H.J. Res. 124) last week, keeping the government open through December 11, and the Senate’s approval followed shortly thereafter. The House also passed an energy package, the American Energy Solutions for Lower Costs and More American Jobs Act (H.R. 2) September 18. The measure, consisting of 13 already-House-approved bills, would approve the Keystone XL pipeline (H.R. 3, H.R. 3301), limit environmental regulations (H.R. 1582, H.R. 3826), and open federal lands to energy extraction (H.R. 4899). The House also approved a tax and deregulatory package, the Jobs for America Act (H.R. 4). The White House announced last week that the president would veto both the energy and tax packages if they came to his desk. The Senate will not act on the measures, but they afford a preview of the issues the upper chamber would consider if Republicans assume control of the Senate in 2015.