H.R. 22: the Surface Transportation Reauthorization & Reform Act/aka the Drive Act. The bill represents a combination of the Senate-passed long-term highway bill (the DRIVE Act) with language reported out of the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee. This bill reauthorizes federal highway, mass transit and safety programs for six years, through fiscal 2021, mostly at current levels – but it covers Highway Trust Fund shortfalls to provide full program funding for only the first three years. The House considered numerous amendments to the legislation culminating in a final “wrap up” vote to combine the legislation and amendments as well as a vote on a motion to go to conference with the Senate in order to produce a final bill.
- On the final “wrap up” vote, Passed the House: 363-64.
- On the motion to go to conference, Passed the House: 371-54.
S. 1356, the revised National Defense Authorization (NDAA) Conference Agreement for FY 2016. The bill authorizes $599 billion for the Pentagon and defense-related programs for FY 2016, $5 billion less than both the president’s overall request and the original conference agreement. The president vetoed the original agreement on Oct. 22, objecting to its $38 billion in base defense funding in the uncapped Overseas Contingency Operations account.
- Passed the House 370-58.
S.1140: Federal Water Quality Protection Act. Clean Water Act Dispute: The Senate voted to invoke cloture to advance the GOP bill that would kill a new Environmental Protection Agency rule giving Clean Water Act protection to waters such as wetlands and tributaries that are upstream of navigable waters. A yes vote was to advance S.1140 to full debate.
Key votes ahead
In the week of Nov. 9 – Nov. 13 , the House will be in Veterans Day recess, while the Senate will continue to debate fiscal 2016 military spending.