Proceedings, Debates of the U.S. Congress
March 17, 2017
115th Congress, 1st Session
Issue: Vol. 163, No. 47 — Daily Edition
Entire Issue (PDF)
Daily Digest Section (PDF)
Friday, March 17, 2017
The Senate was not in session and stands adjourned until 10 a.m., on Monday, March 20, 2017.––––––
No committee meetings were held.
House of Representatives
Report Filed: A report was filed today as follows:
H.R. 1101, to amend title I of the Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974 to improve access and choice for entrepreneurs with small businesses with respect to medical care for their employees, with an amendment (H. Rept. 115–43).
Providing for the expenses of certain committees of the House of Representatives in the One Hundred Fifteenth Congress: The House agreed to H. Res. 173, providing for the expenses of certain committees of the House of Representatives in the One Hundred Fifteenth Congress.
Improving the authority of the Secretary of Veterans Affairs to hire and retain physicians and other employees of the Department of Veterans Affairs: The House passed H.R. 1367, to improve the authority of the Secretary of Veterans Affairs to hire and retain physicians and other employees of the Department of Veterans Affairs, by a yea-and-nay vote of 412 yeas with none voting ``nay'', Roll No. 171.
Pages H2155–67, H2167–68
Pursuant to the Rule, an amendment in the nature of a substitute consisting of the text of Rules Committee Print 115–6 shall be considered as an original bill for the purpose of amendment under the five-minute rule.
Wenstrup amendment (No. 1 printed in part B of H. Rept. 115–39) that extends the timeline to implement the fellowship program from 90 days to one year and extends the GAO reporting deadline from one to two years; additionally, it removes the requirement to track a number of hiring effectiveness metrics, changes the establishment of a recruiting database from a ``shall'' to ``may'' authority, and stipulates that HR training be accomplished virtually;
Meng amendment (No. 2 printed in part B of H. Rept. 115–39) that makes clear that the Inspector General of the VA must report, pursuant to 38 U.S.C. 7412, on at minimum five clinical and five nonclinical VA occupations that have the largest staffing shortages, which then triggers special hiring authorities for the Secretary to address such shortages;
Sewell (AL) amendment (No. 3 printed in part B of H. Rept. 115–39) that allows the Secretary to select eligible employees for the Executive Management Fellowship Program who represent or service rural areas, to whatever extent practicable;
Buck amendment (No. 5 printed in part B of H. Rept. 115–39) that prevents former political appointees at the VA from receiving non-political, competitively selected positions at the VA without having to go through the proper selection process;
Shea-Porter amendment (No. 6 printed in part B of H. Rept. 115–39) that requires the Secretary of the Department of Veterans Affairs to list open mental health positions in the database established under the bill;
Brownley (CA) amendment (No. 7 printed in part B of H. Rept. 115–39) that clarifies that ``medical facility'' referenced in Sec. 10 includes each medical center, domiciliary facility, outpatient clinic, community-based outpatient clinic, and vet center;
Welch amendment (No. 8 printed in part B of H. Rept. 115–39) that adds an analysis of succession planning and hiring in rural areas, and requires a study on the ability to hire and recruit veterans in rural areas;
Gottheimer amendment (No. 9 printed in part B of H. Rept. 115–39) that adds veterans who are recent graduates and/or recipients of Post-9/11 GI Bill Educational Assistance as a distinct category of individuals who are allowed for excepted service appointments;
Herrera Beutler amendment (No. 10 printed in part B of H. Rept. 115–39) that strengthens anonymity protections for employees filling out exit surveys, and requires exit survey data to be compiled at the VISN level to identify and acknowledge regional differences;
Meng amendment (No. 12 printed in part B of H. Rept. 115–39) that encourages the transition of military medical professionals into employment with the Veterans Health Administration upon discharge or separation from the Armed Forces;
Bost amendment (No. 13 printed in part B of H. Rept. 115–39) that directs the Department of Veterans Affairs to develop and implement a plan to hire a director for each VA medical center without a permanent director;
O'Rourke amendment (No. 14 printed in part B of H. Rept. 115–39) that allows the VA to offer physicians conditional job offers two years prior to the completion of their residency program; requires VA recruiters or similar official to visit each teaching institution with a residency program at least once annually; and
Hanabusa amendment (No. 11 printed in part B of H. Rept. 115–39) that requires the total number of employees that voluntarily separated and the percentage of those employees that took the voluntary exit survey (by a recorded vote of 400 ayes to 8 noes, Roll No. 170).
Pages H2164–65, H2167–68
Hanabusa amendment (No. 4 printed in part B of H. Rept. 115–39) that sought to strike section 6, ``Reemployment of Former Employees,'' which would allow for the Secretary to appoint former employees at one grade higher than when they last separated, without having to go through the usual competitive application process.
Recess: The House recessed at 10:15 a.m. and reconvened at 11:02 a.m.
Meeting Hour: Agreed by unanimous consent that when the House adjourns today, it adjourn to meet at 12 noon on Monday, March 20th for Morning Hour debate.
Adjournment: The House met at 9 a.m. and adjourned at 1:53 p.m.
No hearings are scheduled.
No joint committee meetings were held.
Committee on the Judiciary: to hold hearings to examine the nomination of Neil M. Gorsuch, of Colorado, to be an Associate Justice of the Supreme Court of the United States, 11 a.m., SH–216.
Committee on Rules, Full Committee, hearing on H.R. 372, the ``Competitive Health Insurance Reform Act of 2017''; and H.R. 1101, the ``Small Business Health Fairness Act of 2017'', 5 p.m., H–313 Capitol.
Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence, Full Committee, hearing on ongoing investigation into Russian Active Measures, 10 a.m., 1100 LHOB.
Program for Monday: Senate will meet in a pro forma session.
Program for Monday: To be announced.
Black, Diane, Tenn., E339
Capuano, Michael E., Mass., E342
Comstock, Barbara, Va., E340
Costa, Jim, Calif., E344
Davis, Rodney, Ill., E344
Donovan, Daniel M., Jr, N.Y., E339
Frankel, Lois, Fla., E343
Frelinghuysen, Rodney P., N.J., E341
Graves, Garret, La., E342
Hudson, Richard, N.C., E341
Huffman, Jared, Calif., E339
King, Peter T., N.Y., E339
Labrador, Raú R., Idaho, E341
Palazzo, Steven M., Miss., E343
Rooney, Francis, Fla., E344
Schakowsky, Janice D., Ill., E340
Slaughter, Louise McIntosh, N.Y., E342
Speier, Jackie, Calif., E340
Swalwell, Eric, Calif., E339