Congressional Schedule: Members of Congress are currently on recess until after the November 8th election.
Appropriations Update: Congress’s biggest task when they return the week of November 14th will be to negotiate 11 appropriations measures to fund government agencies and programs, including WIC, for the remainder of FY 2017. There is a commitment from both chambers to complete all remaining appropriations bills by December 9th. When members return the week of November 14th, the Senate will have just 15 working days and the House 12 working days to complete appropriations. The goal is for the full Appropriations Committee to be finished with their work by December 2nd in order to provide enough time for passage on the floor of both the House and Senate.
It is unclear at this point whether Congress will opt for two or three “minibuses” or one large omnibus spending package. Another possibility is a so-called “CRomnibus,” in which any spending bills that are not completed would be extended through a continuing resolution, or CR. Many factors including the election results and the addition of policy riders to spending measures will help to decide how the remainder of FY 2017 for WIC and all other government programs is funded.
Child Nutrition Reauthorization Update: The Senate Agriculture Committee, chaired by Senator Pat Roberts (R-KS), is hopeful that its bipartisan Child Nutrition Reauthorization (CNR) bill, S. 3136, will advance in the weeks following the November 8th election. Policymakers may attach this legislation to either an omnibus or minibus. However, there is no guarantee that progress will be made on CNR before the end of the 2016 calendar year. We will keep you posted on any updates.
Election Day – November 8, 2016: This is a reminder to please mark your calendars for Election Day, just two weeks from tomorrow! There are many important races throughout the US – for President, US Senate, US House of Representatives, state seats and local seats. Please be sure that your voice is heard by helping to elect policymakers that will support and strengthen WIC. You can read about key Senate races and House races on www.270towin.com.