Congress Strategizes on FY 19 Funding

House Speaker Paul Ryan and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell have been holding discussions on how best to move FY 19 appropriations funding forward.  The concept of adopting several “minibus” bills appears to be gaining traction.

The House is planning to use a minibus format to cover FY 19 funding for Energy & Water, Legislative Branch, and Military Construction appropriations.  The thought behind the approach is to more quickly move and complete work on all FY 19 funding bills before the end of the fiscal year.  The House has completed full Committee markups for about half of the 12 funding measures.  Interior & EPA FY 19 funding has been approved by the Subcommittee but has yet to be considered by the full House Appropriations Committee.

The Senate plans to spend the next several weeks (through June 25) marking up the various appropriations measures.  Although no decision has been made regarding use of the minibus approach, the likelihood is that bills would move to the Senate Floor is clusters of three or four at a time.  Interior & EPA funding is tentatively scheduled for markup during the week of June 11 along with Legislative Branch and Commerce, Justice, Science.  Whether these measures form a cluster for additional consideration is unknown as of this writing.

How the House and Senate approaches will align remains to be seen.  Traditionally, the Senate has been more generous to drinking water than the House and compromise has been the order of the day.  ASDWA will continue to provide the latest information to states as it becomes available.