Weekly Food & Agriculture Update-9.18

Tuesday, September 19th, 2017

Weekly Food & Agriculture Update

September 18, 2017

A quick look at what’s happening in Washington, D.C. that’s impacting food and agriculture. If you would like to subscribe to the receive the updates right to your inbox, please contact Kerry Lynch 

 Big Picture Outlook

  • Schedule – The House is in recess the week, but the Senate is in through Wednesday.  The Senate will likely wrap up defense reauthorization today.  The agreement to extend appropriations until Dec. 8 (not Dec. 15, as was printed in last week’s update) has defused much of the tension for now.
  • Appropriations – The House completed work on all 12 of its FY 2018 appropriations bills last week.  The Senate is further behind – four have yet to be voted on by the Committee, and none of the 12 have seen floor time yet.
  • Debt Ceiling – The debt ceiling may not need to be raised until February or March 2018, well past the Dec. 15 deadline presumed in the agreement between President Trump and Democratic congressional leaders.
  • Tax Reform – The main tax reform negotiators expect to release a draft framework the week of Sep. 25.  Many conservative Members have been calling for this as pre-requisite to consideration of the FY 2018 budget, which is expected to be considered that same week.
  • Health Care – There’s still a chance the Senate may act on Obamacare repeal before the ability to pass it with just 50 votes expires on Sep. 30 – Leader McConnell has asked CBO for a score of the Graham-Cassidy legislation that would repeal some parts of the ACA and redistribute money to states via block grants.

 Nominations & Confirmations

  •  Glen Smith was nominated to be a member of the Farm Credit Administration Board
  • Kimberly Reed was nominated to be First Vice President of the Export-Import Bank

The Week Ahead


    • Senate Ag nominations hearing for Steve Censky to be USDA Deputy Secretary and Ted McKinney to be Under Secretary for Trade and Foreign Agricultural Affairs
    • Senate ENR hearing for Joseph Balash to be Assistant Secretary of the Interior for Land and Minerals Management, et al
    • Senate Finance hearing on “Business Tax Reform”
    • Farm Foundation is hosting a forum on “U.S. Agricultural Innovation: Changes Needed for Global Competitiveness”
      • The forum will be followed by a symposium on “Research & Innovation Policies for Sustainable Productivity Growth in Agriculture” with USDA-ERS and OECD


    • Senate EPW nominations hearing for four individuals to be Assistant Administrators at EPA, et al

A Quick Look Back

On September 8, USDA released the study done by Deloitte on the feasibility of QR codes for use in biotech food disclosure.

Pertinent Timing Ticker

  •  47 legislative days (36 for House) until government funding expires and debt ceiling is reached (Dec. 8, 2017)
  • 377 total days until the farm bill expires (Sep. 30, 2018)

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