the Daily Whip: Wednesday, June 8, 2016

By Newsroom America Feeds at 8 Jun 2016 - (202) 225-3130 FLOOR SCHEDULE FOR WEDNESDAY, JUNE 8, 2016 House Meets At: First Vote Predicted: Last Vote Predicted:

10:00 a.m.: Legislative Business

No “One Minutes” 1:30 – 2:30 p.m. 4:00 – 5:00 p.m.

The House will meet at 10:00 a.m. for legislative business and recess immediately. The House will reconvene at approximately 10:45 a.m. for a Joint Meeting of Congress to receive His Excellency Narendra Modi, Prime Minister of the Republic of India.

H.Res. 767 – Rule providing for consideration of H.R. 4775Ozone Standards Implementation Act of 2016 (Rep. Olson – Energy and Commerce), H.Con.Res. 89 – Expressing the sense of Congress that a carbon tax would be detrimental to the United States economy (Rep. Scalise – Ways and Means), and H.Con.Res. 112 – Expressing the sense of Congress opposing the President's proposed $10 tax on every barrel of oil (Rep. Boustany – Ways and Means) (One hour of debate). The Rules Committee has recommended one Rule which would provide for consideration of three measures.

For H.R. 4775, the Rules Committee has recommended a structured Rule that provides for one hour of general debate equally divided and controlled by the Chair and Ranking Member of the Committee on Energy and Commerce. The Rule allows for 6 amendments, debatable for 10 minutes equally divided between the offeror and an opponent. The Rule allows one motion to recommit, with or without instructions, and waives all points of order against the legislation.

For H.Con.Res. 89, the Rules Committee has recommended a closed Rule that provides for one hour of general debate equally divided between the Chair and Ranking Member of the Committee on Ways and Means. The Rule waives all points of order against the resolution.

For H.Con.Res. 112, the Rules Committee has recommended a closed Rule that provides for one hour of general debate equally divided between the Chair and Ranking Member of the Committee on Ways and Means. The Rule waives all points of order against the resolution.

The Rules Committee rejected a motion by Ms. Slaughter of New York to consider H.R. 4775, H.Con.Res. 89, and H.Con.Res. 112 under open rules. Members are urged to VOTE NO.

H.R. 4775 Ozone Standards Implementation Act of 2016 (Rep. Olson – Energy and Commerce). The bill would change several important provisions of Clean Air Act.

On Oct. 1, 2015, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) issued a final rule to strengthen the National Ambient Air Quality Standards (NAAQS) for ground-level ozone to 70 parts per billion (ppb), based on extensive scientific evidence about ozone’s effects on public health and welfare. The bill would extend for eight years EPA’s deadline for implementing the NAAQS EPA’s National Ambient Air Quality Standards (NAAQS). Changing the deadline from 2017 to 2025 would put people at risk, especially the elderly, and those with asthma, which disproportionately are children from lower-income and minority communities.

H.R. 4775 also changes the frequency with which EPA must conduct reviews of the NAAQS for air pollutants from five years to ten years. Currently, under the Clean Air Act, the EPA is required to review the most up to date science and medical information on air pollutants every five years to ensure that the public is protected with the most up to date scientific advancements and understanding of air pollution.

Lastly, the bill creates loopholes for achieving compliance with a particular ozone standard. H.R. 4775 would exempt areas with the worst air quality from establishing contingency measures if they fail to make progress toward achieving the ozone standard. Also, it expands the definition of “exceptional events” that could exempt states from meeting these standards by including high temperatures and drought. Regardless of high temperatures and droughts, the American people need to be assured they are breathing in quality air and are not being subjected carelessly to harmful pollutants.

H.R. 4775 is simply another attack on the EPA and the Clean Air Act. Instead of wasting time attacking the environment and putting legislation on the Floor that will put the American people, especially the elderly and low-income Americans, at risk, House Republicans should work toward responsible solutions to combat the Zika virus, address the Flint water crisis, or tackle criminal justice reform.

In the Statement of Administration Policy, the President's senior advisors stated that they would recommend he veto this bill.

The Rule makes in order 6 amendments, debatable for 10 minutes, equally divided between the offeror and an opponent. The amendments are:

Whitfield Amendment. Provides that no additional funds are authorized to be appropriated to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) under the bill, and requires the agency to carry out the bill’s provisions with existing funds.
Rush Amendment.
Allows a federal, state, local, or tribal permitting agency to opt-out of section 3 (d) of the bill if the agency determines that issuing the bill’s requirements for issuing a preconstruction permit will: increase air pollution, slow permitting, increase regulatory uncertainty, foster litigation, shift the burden of pollution control from new pollution sources to existing sources, or increase the overall cost of achieving a new or revised national ambient air quality standard within their jurisdiction.
Pallone Amendment. Strikes the underlying bill’s requirement that EPA must consider the “technological feasibility” of controlling a pollutant when setting national ambient air quality standards and retains the current law requirement that such standards be set to protect public health.
Gosar Amendment. Ensures that the study on ozone formation contained in the bill analyzes ozone formed during wildfires.
Polis Amendment. Amends the Clean Air Act to repeal the current prohibition against aggregating pollution emissions from oil or natural gas exploration and production wells and pipelines carrying those fossil fuel products to determine if they are a major source of air pollution. Additionally, it requires the EPA to issue a rule adding hydrogen sulfide to the list of hazardous air pollutants.
Norton Amendment. Provides that the provisions of the bill would not apply if the EPA Administrator, in consultation with the existing Clean Air Scientific Advisory Committee, finds that the application of any section could harm human health or the environment.

Bill Text for H.R. 4775:
PDF Version

Background for H.R. 4775:
House Report (HTML Version)
House Report (PDF Version)

Suspension (1 bill)

House Amendment to S. 2276PIPES Act of 2016, as amended (Sen. Fischer – Transportation and Infrastructure)

Postponed Suspension (1 bill)

H.R. 3826 – Mount Hood Cooper Spur Land Exchange Clarification Act (Rep. Walden – Natural Resources)

The GOP Leadership has announced the following schedule for Thursday, June 9: The House will meet at 12:00 p.m. for legislative business. The House is expected to consider H.R. 5278 – Puerto Rico Oversight, Management, and Economic Stability Act (PROMESA) (Rep. Duffy – Natural Resources) (Subject to a Rule). The House is also expected to begin consideration of H.R. 5325 – Legislative Branch Appropriations Act, 2017 (Rep. Graves (GA) – Appropriations) (Subject to a Rule).

The Daily Quote

“GOP leaders are gambling they can muscle the [Legislative Branch Appropriations] legislation through, and thereby generate the impression they’ve put the budget process quickly back on track after their most public legislative failure during Speaker Paul D. Ryan’s seven months in charge: Just before Memorial Day an astonishing 305 members — or 70 percent of the House, including a majority of the Republican majority — voted to reject what should have been a routine spending bill for energy and water development programs. It was the first such outright defeat in 11 years for one of the annual appropriations bills.”

- Roll Call, 6/6/2016

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