THE DAILY WHIP: TUESDAY, FEBRUARY 7, 2017

House Meets At:First Vote Predicted:Last Vote Predicted:

10:00 a.m.: Morning Hour
12:00 p.m.: Legislative Business

Fifteen “One Minutes”
1:30 – 2:30 p.m.5:30 – 6:30 p.m. 

H.Res. 91 – Rule providing for consideration of H.J.Res. 44 – Disapproving the rule submitted by the Department of the Interior relating to Bureau of Land Management regulations that establish the procedures used to prepare, revise, or amend land use plans pursuant to the Federal Land Policy and Management Act of 1976 (Rep. Cheney – Natural Resources), H.J.Res. 58Providing for congressional disapproval under chapter 8 of title 5, United States Code, of the rule submitted by the Department of Education relating to teacher preparation issues (Rep. Guthrie – Education and Workforce), and H.J.Res. 57 – Providing for congressional disapproval under chapter 8 of title 5, United States Code, of the rule submitted by the Department of Education relating to accountability and State plans under the Elementary and Secondary Education Act of 1965 (Rep. Rokita – Education and Workforce) (One hour of debate).  The Rules committee has recommended one Rule which provides for consideration of 3 measures.

For H.J.Res. 44, the Rules Committee has recommended a closed Rule that provides for one hour of general debate equally divided between the Chair and Ranking Member of the Committee on Natural Resources. The Rule allows one motion to recommit and waives all points of order against the resolution.

For H.J.Res. 58, the Rules Committee has recommended a closed Rule that provides for one hour of general debate equally divided between the Chair and Ranking Member of the Committee on Education and the Workforce. The Rule allows one motion to recommit and waives all points of order against the resolution. 

For H.J.Res. 57, the Rules Committee has recommended a closed Rule that provides for one hour of general debate equally divided between the Chair and Ranking Member of the Committee on Education and the Workforce. The Rule allows one motion to recommit and waives all points of order against the resolution.  Members are urged to VOTE NO.

H.J.Res. 44 – Disapproving the rule submitted by the Department of the Interior relating to Bureau of Land Management regulations that establish the procedures used to prepare, revise, or amend land use plans pursuant to the Federal Land Policy and Management Act of 1976 (Rep. Cheney – Natural Resources) (One hour of debate).  The resolution disapproves of the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) Planning Rule, also known as the “Planning 2.0” Rule, which was finalized at the end of last year. The rule modifies the regulatory framework for updating and maintaining Resource Management Plans (RMPs) for the 245 million acres of public land and 200 million acres of sub-surface mineral estate that BLM manages. 

Planning 2.0 gives stakeholders such as state and local governments, Tribes, partner agencies, and local populations a larger role in the process by allowing for their input throughout the stages of development and increasing the level of transparency during the entire process.  Additionally the Rule emphasizes the role of “high quality information,” including requiring that the best available science be used in the decision making process in order to protect critical habitats, allow continued access to recreation, and protect the environment from the impacts of climate change. 

Prior to Planning 2.0 being issued, the previous Rule had been in place since the Reagan Administration. State and Local governments and resources users had requested an update to the process because it had become too slow and hidden from the public, taking an average of eight years to update or revise existing RMPs. 

Republicans continually talk about how they want to repeal laws that allow “unelected bureaucrats” to enforce regulations on the public without taking the wishes of the American people into account, but H.J.Res. 44 is a clear example of their hypocrisy.  Planning 2.0 gives more power to people living in local communities that are directly impacted by RMPs by allowing those people to have a greater voice and a clear role in the entire process.

Planning 2.0 was carefully and transparently crafted over a period of two years in conjunction with industry professionals and the public.  Now Republicans want to undo this Rule and go back to an antiquated process after just one hour of debate on the House Floor, and they are doing so by using the Congressional Review Act (CRA) process, which allows for a vote by a simple majority in the Senate and blocks promulgation of any substantially similar rule in the future.

Bill Text for H.J.Res. 44:
PDF Version

Background for H.J.Res. 44:
Fact Sheet From the Democratic Staff on the Committee on Natural Resources

H.J.Res. 58 Providing for congressional disapproval under chapter 8 of title 5, United States Code, of the rule submitted by the Department of Education relating to teacher preparation issues (Rep. Guthrie – Education and Workforce) (One hour of debate).  The resolution disapproves of the Rule issued by the Department of Education relating to teacher preparation.  The Rule was created to ensure consistency, quality, and transparency in teacher preparation programs to benefit students, parents, prospective teachers, current teachers, school systems and state educational organizations.

In 2013-2014, roughly 460,000 individuals were enrolled in traditional and alternative teacher certification preparation programs.  This Rule would ensure that every student or prospective student is aware of the employment outcomes, level of preparedness for the classroom, and demonstrated success in improving student learning outcomes of previous students who completed such programs.  The transparency required in the Rule also allows the prospective teacher candidate to see the strengths of different programs so they can choose a program that is right for them.  This Rule, not only protects those students seeking teacher certification, but it also ensures that the students in the classrooms of those prospective teachers are taught by someone who feels prepared and capable of succeeding in the classroom, while also providing valuable information to employers seeking to hire teachers.

Consistent with the 2008 bipartisan comprehensive reauthorization of the Higher Education Act (HEA), the Rule provides flexibility to states in assessing the quality of teacher certification preparation program.  States, not the federal government would decide what constitutes a “high-quality” teacher preparation program by: (1) including as many metrics as they want: (2) weighing such metrics any way they would like; and (3) developing quality performance levels.  Additionally, it ensures that recipients of the Teacher Education Assistance for College and Higher Education (TEACH) grant, who will eventually go on to teach at a high-needs school, only attend a teacher preparation program that “provides high-quality teacher education.”

H.J.Res. 58 would not only undo all of the improvements to the current system for both students and teachers but it would do so by rolling back a rule that was crafted with extensive stakeholder and public feedback through four years of public hearings and comment periods, in a short, partisan debate.  It would also prevent future consideration of a “substantially similar” rule under the Congressional Revue Act (CRA) procedure

Bill Text for H.J.Res. 58:
PDF Version

Background for H.J.Res. 58:
Fact Sheet From the Democratic Staff on the Committee on Education and the Workforce

H.J.Res. 57 Providing for congressional disapproval under chapter 8 of title 5, United States Code, of the rule submitted by the Department of Education relating to accountability and State plans under the Elementary and Secondary Education Act of 1965 (Rep. Rokita – Education and Workforce) (One hour of debate).  The resolution disapproves of the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) rule which addresses the implementation of a state’s accountability system when receiving federal education funding.  ESSA, the bipartisan reauthorization of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA) in 2015, the first since No Child Left Behind (NCLB) in 2001, relied on a balance between increased flexibility to states while maintaining the federal guardrails that protect the civil rights of all students.  This rule appropriately clarifies the intended balance of implementing challenging academic standards, collecting and reporting important information to measure school performance, and accounting for resource equity with the flexibility to States to develop their own standards and innovate at the state level.  The Rule was written with extensive feedback from the public and stakeholders across the education system.  States have already begun working on their plans to transition from the top down NCLB to the more flexible ESSA. Disapproving this Rule would disproportionately affect students from Title I schools and create confusion amongst states that have already begun implementing ESSA.  Finally, disapproving this rule by using the Congressional Revue Act (CRA) would prevent future rules that are “substantially similar” from being promulgated. 

Bill Text for H.J.Res. 57:
PDF Version

Background for H.J.Res. 57:
Fact Sheet From the Democratic Staff on the Committee on Education and the Workforce

 
The Daily Quote

“President Trump said in an interview that aired on Sunday that a replacement health care law was not likely to be ready until either the end of this year or in 2018, a major shift from promises by both him and Republican leaders to repeal and replace the law as soon as possible… Mr. Trump acknowledged that replacing former President Barack Obama’s Affordable Care Act is complicated… [S]ome Republicans are worried about a political backlash if they repeal the law without an adequate replacement — potentially throwing millions of people off their insurance.”

-      New York Times, 2/5/2017