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Quick Update from Capitol Hill

The House has delayed a vote on the anticipated Continuing Resolution until next Wednesday.  The delay is due to an Administration request for special funding to support anti-ISIS work in Syria and Iraq.  The hope is that House leaders will be able to retain a “clean” bill despite this late addition.  The Continuing Resolution would extend existing funding levels for Federal agencies until December 11th.  Without the CR, the Federal Government would be required to shut down as of October 1st, the beginning of fiscal year 2015.  The Senate will take action once the House measure is passed.

The House has passed HR 5078, the Waters of the US Overreach Protection Act.  The measure would halt any EPA and Army Corps actions to increase the number of protected streams, creeks, and other waterbodies based on the new definition of “Waters of the US.”  Interestingly, the bill calls for creation of a consultation mechanism that would bring state and local officials to the table to develop a consensus recommendation on how to better refine the intent of the 1972 water law jurisdiction language.  The measure has moved to the Senate where it is receiving a surprising amount of attention from both sides of the aisle.  Regardless, the President has threatened to veto any such legislation placed before him.