1. NECA Wins in Year-End Funding Bills
On December 17, 2019, Congress passed two funding bills, H.R. 1158, FY2020 Consolidated National Security Appropriations Package and H.R. 1865, FY2020 Consolidated Domestic and International Assistance Package, both resulting in big wins for NECA contractors.
NECA’s Look Ahead: In addition to ensuring the full operation of the federal government for the remainder of Fiscal Year 2020, several of NECA’s top legislative priorities were included:
Full repeal of the Affordable Care Act’s (ACA’s) 40 percent “Cadillac Tax”
Allowing 529 savings accounts to be used for costs associated with Department of Labor (DOL) registered apprenticeship programs
Seven-year reauthorization of the Terrorism Risk Insurance Program
Extension of the National Flood Insurance Program
Full repeal of health insurance tax (HIT) and the medical device excise tax
Seven-year authorization of the U.S. Export-Import Bank
An extension of 179D energy efficiency tax deduction retrospectively from 2017 and prospectively through 2020
$1 billion for Better Utilizing Investments to Leverage Development (BUILD) grants
Summaries of the package can be found below:
Full Package Summary – H.R. 1158
Full Package Summary – H.R. 1865
Division Q – Summary (Revenue Provision Amendment)
2. USMCA Passes the House
On December 19, 2019, the House passed, in a 385 to 41 vote, the NECA-supported United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA), H.R. 5430, to replace the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA).
NECA’s Look Ahead: Now that the USMCA has passed the House, it will move to the Senate. Under the Trade Promotion Authority (TPA), the bill procedurally spends up to 15 legislative session days in the Senate Finance Committee. Then, there are up to 15 session days for the Senate to vote on the floor. With Impeachment Articles passed from the House taking precedent, USMCA is unlikely to see a Senate vote any time before late February.
3. Impeachment Update
On December 18, 2019, the House of Representatives took up impeachment procedure and passed H. Res. 755 – “Impeaching Donald John Trump, President of the United States, for high crimes and misdemeanors” by a vote of 230 – 197, 1 for Article I and by a vote of 229 – 197, 1 for Article II.
NECA’s Look Ahead: It remains unclear when the two articles of impeachment will reach the Senate. When they do arrive to the Senate, it is expected that the Senate will begin the trail immediately.