From the President (Diane Hastert)
Update - Neighborhood Commission (Fay Hill)
General Meeting - Finance
Notices - Do Bills Confuse You?
Public Meeting - TCEP
Time for Action - D.C. Home Rule! The Time Is Now
Report from the Hill
Statement of Position on Trade
Community Education Conference on Trade (Barbara Wiebanga)
Report from the Hill
A digest of Congressional activity of LWV interest.
Solid Waste. Senate hearings underway on three bills. Ruth Clusen, national EQ chairman, testified in support of leading role by federal government; made recommendations for certain changes in proposed bills.
Transportation—House/Senate conferees agree on federal-aid highway bill which in effect "busts the trust fund" in three stages. By FY 75 cities may use $200 million of their share of trust fund for buses; bY FY 76 they may use their share of $800 million from trust fund for rail mass transit. League considers the compromise a victory because it establishes principle of flexibility in use of urban money.
ESEA bills are still in markup sessions in the House, with a report expected in about a month. The Senate Subcommittee on Education is holding hearings on the Administration's Education Revenue Sharing bill and on Senator Pell's ESEA and general education bill. Action is concentrated on Appropriations.
Welfare/Social Services -- Congress approved Supplemental Security Income increases, a 4-month delay in the effective date of social services regulations, and requirement for state supplementation of the federal payments to the aged, blind and disabled. These important victories for public welfare recipients were added to the Renegotiation Act and are now Public Law 93-66.
League action will center, immediately, around getting HEW to revise regulations, and if new proposals are unacceptable to Ways and Means and Finance Committees, we will try to secure acceptable legislation to protect services.
Housing—Court declares Executive-branch moratorium on subsidized housing contracts illegal; orders HUD Secretary to release funds and resume letting contracts. League opposes provision in miscellaneous housing bill which would repeal the League-supported Brooke amendments presently making it possible for lowest-income people and welfare recipients to occupy public housing.
HUD appropriations: HR 8825 is in conference to work out differences over funding amounts and tougher Senate anti-impoundment language. HUD appropriations' are about $1 billion less than for last year, but about $400 million above budget request. Housing subsidy funds inadequate in both bills; community development funds more adequate.
International Relations—The politics of trade. Ways and Means Committee no longer expects to finish trade bill by August recess. Watergate revelations make members more cautious about granting President unlimited negotiation powers. Committee sources say tentative agreement has been reached on several key issues. Adjustment assistance powers currently expanded to include communities and firms as well as workers. Bill seems to be shaping up as one League and other "liberal-trade" groups can support. TIME FOR ACTION, planned for July, now scheduled for September—or as soon as bill is reported.
Representative Government-- Anti-impoundment legislation—HR 8480--passed House on July 25, and will go to conference. Presidential veto expected no matter what the final compromise agreement. House version requires President to' notify Congress of decision not to spend funds and to release funds if either house disapproves the action within 60 days. Senate version would order end to impoundment unless both houses approve Executive action within 60 days. Other differences to be resolved also.
Budget control League has strong reservations about HR 7130, the proposal for House and Senate Budget Control Committees now before House Rules Committee. Reps. Ullman (D OR) and Anderson (R IL) have proposed modifications which move in right direction. See RG 1 for modifications you may wish to discuss with your members in House and Senate.
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