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This Week in Congress: June 1 – 5, 2009

This week Congress reviews war appropriations, considers legislation for paid leave for federal employees, and marks up energy legislation.

Rush hour traffic on Independence Avenue makes its way past the U.S. Capitol Building. (AP/Pablo Martinez Monsivais)
Rush hour traffic on Independence Avenue makes its way past the U.S. Capitol Building. (AP/Pablo Martinez Monsivais)

Defense appropriations

Conferees will try to reach agreement on the fiscal year 2009 war supplemental appropriations bill this week, with floor action in both chambers on the conference report to follow. The most contentious items between the House’s $96.7 billion version and the Senate’s $91.3 billion version will be the Senate-passed $5 billion in lending assistance to the International Monetary Fund, and the House-passed $2.2 billion for C-17 cargo planes and $904 million for C-130 cargo planes. The Senate nominated its entire Appropriations Committee to serve as conferees, and the House conferees will likely be named on Tuesday.

More from CAP:

Column: Funding War Through the Backdoor by Sean Duggan and Laura Conley

Column: Ending Unneeded Weapons Programs by Sean Duggan

 

Antitrust

The Senate will continue debate this week on a bill to allow antitrust lawyers to regulate railroad mergers. Final passage is expected mid-week.

More from CAP:

Report: Restoring Trust in Antitrust Enforcement by David Balto

Report: A Different Approach to Antitrust Enforcement for the Obama Administration by Andrew J. Pincus

 

Family

This week, the House is scheduled to consider H.R. 626, the Federal Employees Paid Parental Leave Act. As currently written the bill provides for four weeks of paid parental leave and eight weeks of unpaid leave for federal employees.

More from CAP:

Testimony: Encouraging Family-Friendly Workplace Policies by Heather Boushey

 

Energy and environment

On Thursday, the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee will mark up further titles of energy legislation, including language that establishes a nationwide 15-percent renewable electricity standard by 2021.

More from CAP:

Video: What Is a Renewable Electricity Standard? by Daniel J. Weiss

Interactive Map: A Clean-Energy Standard Would Lower Household Electricity Bills

Column: A Renewable Energy Standard: The Proof Is in the States