DC Legislative Update: June 7-11, 2021

NWF DC Legislative Update: June 7-11, 2021

Check here for the 2021 Senate Calendar
Check here for the 2021 House Calendar


Upcoming Congressional Hearings

  • House Science, Space, and Technology Committee
    • Monday, June 7 at 11am EST: Subcommittee on Environment hearing on “Defining a National ‘Oceanshot’: Accelerating Ocean and Great Lakes Science and Technology.”
    • Wednesday, June 9 at 10am EST: Subcommittee on Research and Technology hearing on “Building Regional Innovation Economies.”
  • Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee
    • Tuesday, June 8 at 10am EST: Full Committee Hearing to Consider Pending Nominations, including:
      • Tracy Stone-Manning to be Director of the Bureau of Land Management;
      • Shalanda H. Baker to be Director of the Office of Minority Economic Impact, Department of Energy;
      • Samuel T. Walsh to be General Counsel, Department of Energy; and
      • Andrew E. Light to be an Assistant Secretary of Energy (International Affairs).
    • House Ways and Means Committee
      • Tuesday, June 8 at 10am EST: Hearing on “The President’s Proposed Fiscal Year 2022 Budget with the Department of Health and Human Services Secretary ”
    • House Energy and Commerce Committee
      • Tuesday, June 8 at 2pm EST: Subcommittee on Consumer Protection and Commerce hearing on “The Fiscal Year 2022 Department of Commerce Budget.”
  • House Homeland Security Committee
    • Tuesday, June 8 at 2pm EST: Subcommittee on Emergency Preparedness, Response, and Recovery hearing on “Examining Climate Change: A Threat to the Homeland.”
  • House Natural Resources Committee
    • Tuesday, June 8 at 12pm EST: Subcommittee on National Parks, Forests, and Public Lands hearing to examine how to expand access to public lands, including easing permits for tour guides and addressing infrastructure
    • Tuesday, June 8 at 3pm EST: Subcommittee on Water, Oceans, and Wildlife hearing on “DDT Dumping Off the Southern California Coast: Ecological Impacts, Scientific Needs, and Next Steps”
  • House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee
    • Wednesday, June 9 at 10am EST: Full committee markup to consider, among others, the:
      • Amendment in the Nature of a Substitute (ANS) to H.R. 1915, the Water Quality Protection and Job Creation Act of 2021;
      • Amendment in the Nature of a Substitute (ANS) to H.R. 3684, the INVEST in America Act
    • Senate Environment and Public Works Committee
  • Senate Appropriations Committee
    • Wednesday, June 9 at 10am EST: Subcommittee on Interior, Environment “Hearing to examine proposed budget estimates and justification for fiscal year 2022 for the Environmental Protection ”
  • Wednesday, June 9 at 10am EST: Subcommittee on Labor, Health and Human Services, and Education “Hearing on the President’s Fiscal Year 2022 Budget Request for the United States Department of Health and Human ”
  • Wednesday, June 9 at 10am EST: Subcommittee on Energy and Water Development hearing on “A Review of the Fiscal Year 2022 Budget Submission for the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, and the Bureau of Reclamation.”
  • Thursday, June 10 at 10am EST: Subcommittee on Transportation, Housing and Urban Development hearing on “A Review of the President’s FY 2022 Funding Request and Budget Justification for the US Department of Housing and Urban Development.”

Government hearing on the “Office of Management and Budget FY22 Budget Requests.”

Congressional News

  • The Senate Environment and Public Works Committee and Senate Finance Committees marked up the Surface Transportation Reauthorization Act of 2021 and the Clean Energy for America Act of 2021, respectively. The former, a bipartisan bill calling for $303.5 billion in investments into surface transportation infrastructure including $350 million for wildlife crossings and billions in climate- targeted investments, passed the committee by a vote of 20-0. The latter would replace current clean energy tax credits with a technology-neutral credit, while also incorporating new labor standards and an added incentive for clean energy deployment and manufacturing in fossil fuel-intensive areas. See NWF’s statement on the bills here.
  • The Senate voted to confirm Eric Lander, Biden’s last cabinet-level nominee, to lead the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy
  • The Senate confirmed Kristen Clarke to be Assistant Attorney General overseeing the Civil Rights She was confirmed on a 51-48 vote and is the first Black woman to lead the division. See here for NWF’s tweet in support.
  • The Senate Environment and Public Works Committee voted to advance three nominees to lead the EPA and the Interior The votes included:
    • a 14-6 vote to approve Radhika Fox to be Assistant Administrator for water at
    • a vote of 19-1 to approve Michal Freedhoff to be Assistant Administrator for Chemical Safety and Pollution Prevention at EPA
    • a 19-1 vote to approve Shannon Estenoz to be Assistant Secretary of Fish and Wildlife and Parks at the Interior Estenoz’s nomination was also approved by voice vote by the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee.
  • The Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee approved nominees for positions in the Interior Department. The votes included:
    • a 11-9 vote to approve tribal law expert Robert Anderson’s nomination to be the Department’s Solicitor.
    • approval for Tanya Trujillo to be Assistant Secretary for Water and Science.
  • The Senate Agriculture Committee voted to advance the nomination of Janie Hipp, a citizen of the Chickasaw Nation with decades of experience in agricultural law, to be USDA General See here for NWF’s tweet in support.
  • NWF and our 11 Western Affiliates submitted this letter asking the Secretary of Interior to support continuation and expansion of the Department of the Interior’s efforts to maintain, conserve, and enhance big game migration corridors and winter seasonal ranges across the West, currently formalized through DOI’s Secretarial Order 3362.
  • NWF and 33 state, regional, and national partners sent this letter to congressional leadership calling for prioritization of energy transition communities and fossil fuel industry workers in infrastructure
  • Last week, the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee Chair DeFazio, Highways and Transit Subcommittee Chair Holmes Norton, and Railroads, Pipelines, and Hazardous Materials Subcommittee Chair Payne, Jr. introduced the INVEST in America The proposal calls for a five- year, $547 billion surface transportation bill that incorporates many of the Administration’s priorities, including invests of $343 billion in surface transportation. See the committee’ press release for additional resources.

Administrative News

  • On May 24, the Administration announced an increase of $1 billion in funding to the Federal Emergency Management Agency’s (FEMA) pre-disaster mitigation “Building Resilience Infrastructure and Communities ” See NWF’s press release in support of the announcement here.
  • On May 25, the White House, along with National Climate Advisor Gina McCarthy, California Governor Gavin Newsom, Interior Secretary Deb Haaland, and Under Secretary for Defense for Policy Colin Kahl, announced a new effort to advance areas for offshore wind off the northern and central coasts of California. See the White House’s fact sheet here.
  • On May 26, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service issued a proposed listing for the lesser prairie chicken under the Endangered Species Act. NWF supports increased resources to conserve and restore the population and southern Great Plains grasslands through the creation of a new North American Grasslands Conservation Act and support for Farm Bill programs. See the proposed listing here and NWF’s press release here for more.
  • On May 24, NWF sent a letter and issued a statement calling on the US Department of Agriculture and Department of Justice to reconsider their positions in ongoing litigation over a planned mine at Chi’chil Biłdagoteel, also known as Oak Flat, in Arizona See here for NWF’s statement and here for the letter NWF sent to the departments.
  • The EPA on May 27 announced plans to revise the previous administration’s guidance limiting the role of states and Tribes in implementing water quality standards under Section 401 of the Clean Water Act. See here for NWF’s
  • The Administration issued a suspension on oil and gas leasing in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge until the Department of the Interior is given the opportunity conduct a comprehensive review the Coastal Plain Oil and Gas Leasing Read NWF’s press release here.
  • The Administration recently released its $6 trillion-dollar budget proposal for FY22, including allocations and investments into key infrastructure, climate, environment, and related issues The proposed budget, which can be found here as well as on federal agency websites, includes:
    • $350 million for Everglades restoration, a historic increase over prior See here for NWF’s statement.
  • On June 7, the Biden Administration released a decision to reassess the Trump administration’s changes on how federal agencies implement the Endangered Species NWF supports this decision and the continued strengthening of bedrock environment and wildlife laws. See here for NWF’s press release.
  • The Administration issued a proclamation stating June 2021 is National Oceans Month. See here for White House resources, including a comprehensive list of Executive orders to address COVID, the climate crisis, and environmental justice, among other topics.


What’s Happening This Week

  • We expect the Senate to take up nominations, including those listed above and judicial nominees, on the floor this week. The House is in a committee work week, and we expect the Appropriations Committee to work towards marking up bills over the next several
  • Last week, NWF issued a press release, containing this letter, in which 47 of NWF affiliates voiced support for NWF’s Tracy Stone-Manning’s nomination to lead the Bureau of Land Management. The letter was sent to Capitol Hill in advance of Manning’s hearing in the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee on Tuesday, June 8th at 10 am ET. You can watch here!

Senator Heinrich has been circulating a letter calling for investments in natural infrastructure, resilience, and habitat conservation in any upcoming infrastructure package. NWF strongly supports the letter, and urges Senators to sign-on, as the recommendations align with our Restoration and Resilience report – located here and in our press release here.

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