Weekly Legislative Update
 Week of June 8, 2020  
  
Congressional Outlook

The Senate is in session this week, while the House is in recess, with a pro forma session scheduled on Thursday morning. However, the House will hold "Committee Work Days" each day this week, with most hearings being conducted virtually. Numerous committee hearings and virtual forums/briefings/roundtables related to COVID-19 are scheduled for this week in both chambers.
 
The Senate will vote on the Great American Outdoors Act (S. 3422), which makes available, without separate appropriations, more than $2.5 billion annually for spending on land acquisition and deferred maintenance for park land, and would convert money in the $900 million-per-year Land and Water Conservation Fund (LWCF) into mandatory funding. The debate on the bill will also include whether to allow amendments to be considered, including topics like Bureau of Reclamation funding for deferred maintenance on aging federally owned water facilities, changes to oil and gas lease revenue sharing with the Gulf Coast states, and U.S. Park Police restrictions resulting from the recent nationwide protests regarding policing practices.
 
On Monday, House and Senate Democratic leaders introduced the Justice in Policing Act of 2020, " the first-ever bold, comprehensive approach to hold police accountable, change the culture of law enforcement and build trust between law enforcement and our communities." Among other provisions, the legislation would: establish a national standard for the operation of police departments; mandate data collection on police encounters; reprogram existing funds to invest in transformative community- based policing programs; and streamline f ederal law to prosecute excessive force and establish independent prosecutors for police investigations. The House Judiciary Committee is holding a hearing Wednesday and plans to mark up the legislation next week, according to Chairman Jerry Nadler (D-NY). A floor vote is expected as soon as the week of June 22.
 
Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) on Monday urged Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) to schedule a vote on the Justice in Policing Act before the Senate leaves Washington for a two-week recess on July 3, in addition to consideration of the fifth coronavirus relief package passed by the House in mid-May, the HEROES Act. However, it is most likely that the earliest the Senate will consider a police reform bill or COVID-19 package will be in the latter half of July.  
 
Voters will head to the polls on Tuesday to participate in presidential and/or congressional Democratic and Republican primary elections in Georgia, Nevada, North Dakota, South Carolina, and West Virginia.
 
NATaT has created a Coronavirus Guidance webpage to store NATaT letters, memos and briefs on the outbreak, as well as critical information and guidance released by Congress and the Administration. 
Week in Review