Capital Thinking ~ April 8, 2013


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Capital Thinking ~ April 8, 2013

  1. 1. April 8, 2013
  2. 2. Patton Boggs Capital Thinking Weekly Update | April 8, 20131 of 15General LegislativeTomorrow, April 9, the House will meet at 2:00 pm for legislative business. LegislationConsidered Under Suspension of the Rules will include: (1) H.R. 254 – Bonneville Unit CleanHydropower Facilitation Act; (2) H.R. 291 – Black Hills Cemetery Act; and (3) H.R. 1033 – AmericanBattlefield Protection Program Amendments Act of 2013. On Wednesday, April 10, and for thebalance of the week, the House will meet to consider (1) H.R. 678 – Bureau of Reclamation SmallConduit Hydropower Development and Rural Jobs Act (Subject to a Rule); and (2) H.R 1120 –Preventing Greater Uncertainty in Labor-Management Relations Act, Rules Committee Print(Subject to a Rule). Last votes are expected no later than 3:00 pm on Friday.The Senate will convene today, April 8, at 2:00 pm and begin a period of morning business.Agriculture and FoodLEGISLATIVE ACTIVITY Farm Bill Markup. Senate Agriculture Chairwoman Debbie Stabenow (D-MI) is looking to schedulea Farm Bill markup for the week of April 15 or April 22, according to a Senate aide. Immigration Reform. The Senate plans to release its comprehensive immigration legislation asearly as this week. However, details have not yet been finalized for an agricultural worker programthat would aim to create a more permanent farm workforce. Growers and labor groups have beennegotiating an agricultural worker program that would provide a faster track to citizenship (3 to tenyears) than that for other undocumented workers (10 years), but the two sides still have to agree onwages and visa numbers.Senator Marco Rubio (R-FL), who is helping lead agricultural worker negotiations and is a keymember of the “Gang of 8,” has demanded public hearings on immigration. Senate JudiciaryCommittee Chairman Patrick Leahy (D-VT) in response said that once the proposal is introduced, hewill consider scheduling a hearing to examine the legislation.It remains unclear when the House will release its immigration bill or how it will address agriculturalworkers, although Representative Luis Gutierrez (D-IL) has expressed renewed optimism thatRepublicans in both Chambers are now endorsing a path to citizenship. It appears that the delay inthe House is not one of timing, but that Members are still working through substantive issues. This Week’s Hearings.o On Friday, April 12, the House Appropriations Subcommittee on Agriculture, Rural Developmentand FDA will hold a hearing on the “FY 2014 Appropriations: Agriculture, Rural, FDA.”
  3. 3. Patton Boggs Capital Thinking Weekly Update | April 8, 20132 of 15Contact InformationFor additional insights about likely policy developments, please feel free to contact the authors of thissection: Dana Weekes at 202-457-6307 or, and Karen Kudelko at 202-457-5132 or, Appropriations and Sequestration OMB Provides Additional Sequestration Guidance to Agencies. On April 4 the White HouseOffice of Management and Budget (OMB) provided additional sequestration implementation guidanceto federal agencies. OMB acknowledges that “all non-exempt budget accounts in a given spendingcategory must be reduced by a uniform percentage, and the same percentage reduction must beapplied to all programs, projects, and activities (PPAs) within a budget account.” However, OMBadvises agencies to realign funds to protect long-term mission and operation priorities to the extentpossible through reprogramming or transfer authority. The memorandum also directs agencies towork with State, local and tribal governments to reduce administrative burdens in an effort to alleviatesome of the impact of sequestration. President’s FY 2014 Budget Proposal. The President’s FY 2014 Budget Proposal will finally bedelivered to Congress on Wednesday, April 10. While typically viewed as a policy statement, thisyear, the President’s proposal will have even less impact on Capitol Hill because it comes weeks afterthe House and Senate each approved their own FY 2014 Budget Resolutions. The President isexpected to include a framework for $1.8 trillion in deficit reduction over the next ten yearsincorporating many of the components he proposed in his most recent “grand bargain” proposal.On Thursday, Treasury Secretary Jacob Lew is scheduled to testify in front of the Senate Financeand House Ways and Means committees on the FY 2014 Budget Proposal. House Appropriations Committee Budget Hearings. In addition to the hearings noted above,House Appropriations Subcommittees will continue to hold agency budget hearings this week. Thosecurrently scheduled include:o April 10 – United States Capitol Police; Chief Kim Dine (Legislative Branch Subcommittee)o April 11 – Department of Homeland Security; Secretary Janet Napolitano (Homeland SecuritySubcommittee)o April 11 – Department of Commerce; Acting Secretary Rebecca Blank (Commerce-Justice-Science Subcommittee)o April 12 – Drug Enforcement Administration; Administrator Michele Leonhart (Commerce-Justice-Science Subcommittee)
  4. 4. Patton Boggs Capital Thinking Weekly Update | April 8, 20133 of 15o April 12 – Commodity Futures Trading Commission; Chairman Gary Gensler and CommissionerScott O’Mailia (Agriculture Subcommittee)The April 10 Commerce-Justice Science Subcommittee hearing on the budget for the Department ofJustice’s budget with Attorney General Eric Holder has been postponed to April 18. Appropriations Programmatic and Language Request Deadlines. Deadlines for House Membersto submit FY 2014 programmatic or language requests to the appropriations subcommittees havebeen pushed to mid-April. Senate deadlines are currently set for late April / early May. NOTE:Deadlines for Members to receive requests from constituents generally fall one to two weeks prior tothe subcommittee deadlines. Nomination of Sylvia Mathews Burwell as OMB Director. On Wednesday, the Senate BudgetCommittee will conduct a hearing on the confirmation of Sylvia Mathews Burwell as the new Directorof the White House Office of Management and Budget.Contact InformationFor additional insights about likely policy developments, please feel free to contact the author of thissection: Pam Welsh, at 202-457-6493 or BRANCH ACTIVITY Cyber Intelligence Sharing and Protection Act (CISPA). This week, the House IntelligenceCommittee is planning to hold a closed mark-up of the Cyber Intelligence Sharing and Protection Act(CISPA). Although the legislation has received support from business groups like the U.S. Chamberof Commerce and the National Association of Manufacturers, many privacy advocates are concernedabout how customers’ personal information will be used and collected under the bill. Last month,activists submitted over 300,000 online signatures to the House Intelligence Committee to rally publicopposition to the bill and websites such as Facebook, Craigslist and Reddit have also spoken outagainst CISPA. The bill that will be marked up this week is identical to the legislation that passed theHouse last April, which the White House threatened to veto. Anti-Hacking Legislation. The House Judiciary Committee is circulating a draft cybersecurity billthat would stiffen the penalties for cybercrimes and establish standards for companies to notifyconsumers when their personal data has been hacked. Officials from civil liberties groups and otheradvocacy organizations, such as the American Civil Liberties Union, FreedomWorks, and the Centerfor Democracy and Technology, have expressed concerns about the language included in the draftbill, stating that it would expand the scope of the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act (CFAA) to allowprosecutors to go after ordinary Internet users for violating a website’s terms of service or anemployer’s computer policy. The Committee will continue to work with stakeholders to get feedbackon possible changes to the current language in the draft legislation.
  5. 5. Patton Boggs Capital Thinking Weekly Update | April 8, 20134 of 15EXECUTIVE BRANCH ACTIVITY NIST Cybersecurity Framework. Last week, the National Institute of Standards and Technology(NIST) hosted its first workshop to discuss the Cybersecurity Framework it was tasked withdeveloping in the President’s Executive Order (EO) in February. NIST intends to hold its secondworkshop on May 29-31 at Carnegie Mellon University and will also host two other workshops theweeks of July 15 and September 9 in locations that are still to be determined. NIST also recentlyreleased a Request for Information (RFI) requesting feedback from stakeholders regarding thedevelopment of the Cybersecurity Framework. Comments are due on Monday, April 8. Department of Commerce Notice of Inquiry. The Department of Commerce recently published anotice of inquiry that seeks industry comments on how best to incentivize companies to participate inthe voluntary cybersecurity program included in the EO. Comments on the notice of inquiry are dueon Monday, April 29. The Commerce Department intends to submit its recommendations to theWhite House by mid-June. Cyber Command Rules of Engagement. The Pentagon is in the process of finalizing rules ofengagement that will clarify authorities for military commanders if they have to respond to an enemycyber attack. As part of this process, General Keith Alexander, Commander of U.S. CyberCommand, also stated that he plans to deploy 13 cyber-related national mission forces teams bySeptember. These cyber warrior teams will be capable of striking adversary networks to defendagainst cyber attacks on U.S. private computers. Cyber Command intends to focus these resourceson guarding power grids, financial institutions and other vital commercial services.Contact InformationFor additional insights about likely policy developments, please feel free to contact the authors of thissection: Norma Krayem, 202-457-5206 or; or Amy Davenport, at 202-457-6528 or AND LEGISLATIVE BRANCH ACTIVITY Pentagon Budget. In his first major policy speech last week at the National Defense University,Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel said: "In many respects, the greatest long-term fiscal challengefacing the department is not the flat or declining topline budget, it is the growing imbalance in wherethat money is being spent internally." The Secretary expressed his intentions to reduce layers ofmanagement in the civilian and uniformed bureaucracies, trim the proliferation of three- and four-starcommand offices, and downsize the number of people working in support functions. PresidentObama is expected to release his proposed Fiscal Year FY 2014 Budget on April 10. Consequently,Secretary Hagel will testify this week before the Senate Armed Services Committee and the HouseArmed Services Committee on the Defense Authorization Request for FY 2014. At the time of
  6. 6. Patton Boggs Capital Thinking Weekly Update | April 8, 20135 of 15publication, the separate Senate and House Armed Services Committee hearings are slated foroverlapping timeslots this Thursday. This Week’s Hearings:o On Tuesday, April 9, the Senate Armed Services Committee will hold an oversight hearing on theU.S. Pacific Command and U.S. Forces Korea in review of the Defense Authorization Request forFiscal Year 2014.o On Wednesday, April 10, the House Armed Services Subcommittee on Military Personnel willhold a hearing on Mental Health Research.o On Thursday, April 11, the Senate Armed Services Committee and House Armed ServicesCommittee are both scheduled to hold separate hearings will hold a hearing on the DefenseAuthorization Request for Fiscal Year 2014. Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel and Joint Chiefsof Staff Chairman General Martin Dempsey will testify. Note: There is a scheduling conflict, withboth hearings currently slated to be held at overlapping times in the morning.o On Thursday, April 11, the House Armed Services Subcommittee on Tactical Air and LandForces will hold a hearing on Equipping the Individual Soldier and Marine: Current and FutureYear Acquisition and Modernization Strategies and the Fiscal Year 2014 Budget Request.o On Friday, April 12, the House Armed Services Committee will hold a hearing on the FY 2014National Defense Authorization Budget Request from the Department of the Air Force.REGULATORY ACTIVITY DOD, GSA, and NASA have issued a proposed rule that would revise the FAR to clarify contractorsand subcontractors responsibilities under Defense Base Act (DBA). The DBA extends the federalworkers compensation protections provided by the Longshore and Harbor Workers CompensationAct to workers performing under virtually any contract with an agency of the federal government forwork outside the U.S. The proposed rule would revise FAR § 52.228-3, Workers CompensationInsurance (Defense Base Act), to clarify the contractors responsibilities, including the requirement toinclude flow-down of this clause to all subcontractors to which the Defense Base Act applies. Thecomment period for the proposed rule, FAR Case 2012-016, Defense Base Act, ends on May 20.Contact InformationFor additional insights about likely policy developments, please feel free to contact the authors of thissection: Stacy Swanson, at 202-457-5627 or; and Mary Beth Bosco, at202-457-6420 or
  7. 7. Patton Boggs Capital Thinking Weekly Update | April 8, 20136 of 15EnergyLEGISLATIVE ACTIVITY Natural Gas. The Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee has scheduled three forums:“Infrastructure, Transportation, Research and Innovation,” specifically regarding pipeline infrastructureand increased natural gas use in the transportation sector, on May 16; “Domestic Supply andExports” on May 21; and “Shale Development: Best Practices and Environmental Concerns” on May23. Witnesses for the forums have not yet been announced. This Week’s Hearings:O On Tuesday, April 9, the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee will consider thenomination of Dr. Ernest Moniz to be the next Secretary of Energy.O On Wednesday, April 10, a House Energy and Commerce Subcommittee will hold a legislativehearing on H.R. 3, to approve construction of the Keystone XL pipeline.O On Thursday, April 11, House Appropriations Subcommittees will hold oversight hearings onnuclear waste programs and strategies, and on the Bureau of Land Management’s budgetrequest.O On Thursday, April 11, the House Ways and Means Committee will hold a hearing on thePresident’s Budget, which is again expected to eliminate all the tax preferences available to thedomestic oil and gas industry, as well as coal producers.REGULATORY ACTIVITY CFTC Public Power Exemption. The Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC)unanimously voted to exempt certain non-financial derivative transactions between and amongstpublic power utilities from most of the Commodity Exchange Act’s requirements. Vegetation Management. The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission has published a final rulerevising reliability standards for vegetation management near transmission lines. National Offshore Safety Advisory Committee. The Committee will meet on April 17-18 in NewOrleans, to discuss the Recommended Standards for Accommodation Service Vessels, among otherissues. The Coast Guard is also requesting applications for appointments to the Committee;nominations are due by May 28. Keystone XL. The State Department will host a public meeting in Grand Island, Nebraska on April18 as part of the public Draft Supplemental Environmental Impact Statement review process on theproposed pipeline.
  8. 8. Patton Boggs Capital Thinking Weekly Update | April 8, 20137 of 15 Smart Grid. The Smart Grid Advisory Committee will meet on April 19 to discuss the NationalInstitute of Standards and Technology’s Smart Grid Program Plan. Hydrogen and Fuel Cells. The Department of Energy’s Hydrogen and Fuel Cell Technical AdvisoryCommittee will meet on April 23-24. Nuclear. The Nuclear Regulatory Commission’s Advisory Committee on Reactor Safeguards willmeet on April 23-25 in Rockville, Maryland. Wireless Metering. The Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy has requestedcomments by April 26 on the draft Wireless Power Meter Challenge Specification, which will setenergy efficiency performance standards for commercial building electrical metering devices to helpspur development of new technologies. USEITI. The United States Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative Multi-Stakeholder GroupAdvisory Committee will hold a teleconference on Thursday, April 11 and a meeting on May 1-2 toreview and approve the Terms of Reference, nominate and approve co-chairs, and receive aprogress report and public comments. Hydraulic Fracturing. The Environmental Protection Agency’s Hydraulic Fracturing ResearchAdvisory panel will meet May 7-8 in Arlington, Virginia and hold a public teleconference on May 16 tosolicit additional public statements on EPA documents for consideration by the panel. Shale. The Bureau of Land Management has proposed a rule that would amend commercial oilshale management regulations issued under the Bush Administration in order to ensure a fair rate ofreturn to the American taxpayer while encouraging federal shale resource development andprotecting the environment. Public comments must be received by May 28. SEMS II Rule. The Interior Department has issued a revised final rule updating the Safety andEnvironmental Management Systems final rule to further improve offshore drilling safety. It willbecome effective on June 4.Contact InformationFor additional insights about likely policy developments, please feel free to contact the author of thissection: Tanya DeRivi, at 202-457-6504 or ACTIVITY Forests. On Thursday, April 11, the House Committee on Natural Resources, Subcommittee onPublic Lands and Environmental Regulation will hold a legislative hearing to mark up six bills, whichwill include:
  9. 9. Patton Boggs Capital Thinking Weekly Update | April 8, 20138 of 15o Restoring Healthy Forests for Healthy Communities Act and Self-Sufficient CommunityLands Act. These two pieces of legislation aim to improve the economic stability of countiescontaining National Forest System land by ensuring that counties have a source of revenue fromthose lands.o Healthy Forest Management and Wildfire Prevention Act. This legislation aims to addressbark beetle epidemic, drought and risk of wildfires in the National Forest System.o Catastrophic Wildfire Prevention Act of 2013. This legislation would address forest health,public safety and catastrophic wildfire on National Forest System lands and public landsmanaged by the Bureau of Land Management. The legislation would require the Secretary ofAgriculture and the Secretary of the Interior to expedite forest management projects relating tohazardous fuels reduction, forest health and economic development.o Oregon and California (O&C) Trust, Conservation and Jobs Act. This legislation wouldenable National Forest land to provide for funding for Oregon’s rural schools, roads and lawenforcement agencies.o Depleting Risk from Insect Infestation, Soil Erosion and Catastrophic Fire Act of 2013.This legislation aims to improve response to insect infestations and related diseases, changefunding sources for the Healthy Forests Reserve Program, codify end result contracting and goodneighbor authorities and amend emergency watershed protection programs to improve post firerehabilitation Water Resources. On Tuesday, April 16, the House Committee on Transportation and Infrastructurewill hold a hearing concerning a new Water Resources Development Act (WRDA).REGULATORY ACTIVITY Clean Fuels and Car Standards. The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has proposed fuelstandards that aim to reduce pollution and improve efficiency in cars and trucks. The proposedvehicle standards would aim to reduce both tailpipe and evaporative emissions from passenger cars,light-duty trucks, medium-duty passenger vehicles and some heavy-duty vehicles. According to EPA,the proposed standards will reduce gasoline sulfur levels by more than 60 percent by 2017 and willenable vehicle emission control technologies to perform more efficiently. EPA estimates that totalhealth-related benefits will be between $8 and $23 billion annually by 2030. The program is alsoexpected to reduce exposure to pollution near roads. More than 50 million people live, work or go toschool in proximity to high-traffic roadways. Comments are due 30 days from the date of publicationin the Federal Register which is anticipated shortly. Power Plants. EPA has issued updates to pollution limits for new power plants under the mercuryand air toxics standards, based on new information and analysis that became available to the agencyafter the rule was finalized. The updated standards only apply to future power plants and do notchange the types of pollution control technology that plants would install. EPA’s mercury and airtoxics standards are the first national standards in effort to protect the public from power plant
  10. 10. Patton Boggs Capital Thinking Weekly Update | April 8, 20139 of 15emissions of mercury and toxic air pollution including arsenic, acid gas, nickel, selenium and cyanide.Comments are due by May 17.Contact InformationFor additional insights about likely policy developments, please feel free to contact the author of thissection: Sarah Vilms, at 202-457-5248 or ServicesLEGISLATIVE ACTIVITY House Financial Services Subcommittee to Examine Federal Housing Administration Reform.On Wednesday, April 10, the House Financial Services Subcommittee on House and Insurance willhold a hearing titled, “Sustainable Housing Finance: Perspectives on Reforming the FHA.” House Financial Services Subcommittee to Discuss Regulatory Burdens on Credit Unions. OnWednesday, April 10, the House Financial Services Subcommittee on Financial Institutions andConsumer Credit will hold a hearing titled, “Examining Credit Union Regulatory Burdens.” Senate Banking Subcommittee to Address Independent Consultant Accountability Issues. OnThursday, April 11, the Senate Committee on Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs, Subcommittee onFinancial Institutions and Consumer Protection will hold a hearing titled, “Outsourcing Accountability?Examining the Role of Independent Consultants.” The hearing will be divided into two panels. Thefirst panel will include testimony from Mr. Daniel P. Stipano, Deputy Chief Counsel at the Office of theComptroller of the Currency and Mr. Richard M. Ashton, Deputy General Counsel of the Board ofGovernors of the Federal Reserve System. The second panel will consist of Mr. Konrad Alt,Managing Director of the Promontory Financial Group, LLC and Mr. James F. Flanagan, Leader ofthe U.S. Financial Services Practice at Pricewaterhouse Coopers LLP. Treasury Secretary Jack Lew to Testify on the President’s FY 2014 Budget. On Thursday, April11, Treasury Secretary Jack Lew will testify in front of the House Committee on Ways and Means andthe Senate Committee on Finance regarding the President’s Budget for FY2014. House Financial Services Subcommittee to Discuss Derivatives Proposals. On Thursday, April11, the House Committee on Financial Services, Subcommittee on Capital Markets and Government-Sponsored Enterprises will hold a hearing titled “Legislative Proposals Regarding Derivatives andSEC Economic Analysis.” House Appropriations Subcommittee to Consider Commodity Futures Trading CommissionBudget. On Friday, April 12, the House Committee on Appropriations, Subcommittee on Agriculture,Rural Development, Food and Drug Administration, and Related Agencies will hold hearing on theCommodity Futures Trading Commission’s (CFTC) budget. The witnesses testifying at the hearingwill be CFTC Chairman Gary Gensler and CFTC Commissioner Scott O’Malia.
  11. 11. Patton Boggs Capital Thinking Weekly Update | April 8, 201310 of 15REGULATORY ACTIVITY Securities and Exchange Commission to Host Compliance Outreach Program for Broker-Dealers. On Tuesday, April 9, the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) will host, along withthe Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA), a Compliance Outreach Program for broker-dealers. The all-day program will include panelists from the private sector and regulatory agenciesand will focus on the role that effective control functions play in ensuring compliance with ethicalprinciples and current regulation in sales and trading practices, net capital considerations, and riskgovernance. SEC to Explore Regulatory Authority Related to Risks of Identity Theft. On Wednesday, April10, the SEC will hold a meeting to consider whether to adopt new rules and guidelines, jointly with theCFTC, to require certain entities that are subject to the Commissions’ respective enforcementauthorities to establish programs to address risks of identity theft. SEC’s Investor Advisory Committee to Meet on Target Date Funds and Other Issues. OnThursday, April 11, the SEC’s Investor Advisory Committee will meet to consider the recommendationof the Investor as Purchaser Subcommittee on Target Date Funds. The Investor Advisory Committeewill also discuss subcommittee reports and other administrative matters.Contact InformationFor additional insights about likely policy developments, please feel free to contact the author of thissection: Mara Giorgio, at 202-457-6522 or CareLEGISLATIVE ACTIVITY House Committees Detail SGR Repeal. Leaders of the House Energy and Commerce Committeeand Ways and Means Committee today outlined additional details of a proposal to repeal the currentSustainable Growth Rate (SGR) system and replace it with a fair and stable system of physicianpayment in the Medicare program. The latest proposal provides further details and clarity on thethree phases outlined in an earlier proposal released on February 7. The current proposal specifies aprocess to reward providers for high-quality and efficient care in the fee for service (FFS) program.The proposal also includes processes to determine quality and efficiency measures that focus onevidence while being flexible and specialty-specific, recognizes the role that specialty-specificregistries play in facilitating quality improvement while minimizing provider participation burden, andaddresses the need for timely performance feedback to allow providers to identify improvementopportunities and optimize incentive payments. House Energy and Commerce Hearings. The House Committee on Energy and CommerceSubcommittee on Health has scheduled a hearing on Tuesday, April 9, on “Reauthorization of AnimalDrug User Fees: ADUFA and AGDUFA.” The Subcommittee will also meet on Thursday, April 11 for
  12. 12. Patton Boggs Capital Thinking Weekly Update | April 8, 201311 of 15a hearing on “Strengthening Medicare for Seniors: Understanding the Challenges of TraditionalMedicare’s Benefit Design.” Senate Finance Hearings. The Senate Committee on Finance has scheduled a nomination hearingon Tuesday, April 9 to consider the nomination of Marilyn B. Tavenner to be Administrator of theCenters for Medicare and Medicaid Services. The Committee will also hold a hearing on Thursday,April 11 on the President’s FY 2014 budget. Senate HELP Hearing. The Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor and Pensions will meetin Executive Session on Wednesday, April 10 to consider S.__, Mental Health Awareness andImprovement Act of 2013. Senate Budget Hearing. The Senate Budget Committee will hold a hearing on Thursday, April 11on the President’s FY 2014 Budget Proposal.REGULATORY ACTIVITY IRS Posts Charitable Hospitals Notice of Proposed Rulemaking. The Internal Revenue Service(IRS) released a notice of proposed rulemaking for community health needs assessments forcharitable hospitals. This document contains proposed regulations that provide guidance tocharitable hospital organizations on the community health needs assessment (CHNA) requirements,and related excise tax and reporting obligations, enacted as part of the Patient Protection andAffordable Care Act of 2010. These proposed regulations also clarify the consequences for failing tomeet these and other requirements for charitable hospital organizations. These regulations will affectcharitable hospital organizations. Comments and requests for a public hearing must be received byMay 3. CMS Releases Navigator Proposed Rule. The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS)released the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act; Exchange Functions: Standards forNavigators and Non-Navigator Assistance Personnel Proposed Rule. The proposed regulationswould create conflict-of-interest, training and certification, and meaningful access standardsapplicable to Navigators and non-Navigator assistance personnel in Federally-facilitated Exchanges,including State Partnership Exchanges, and to non-Navigator assistance personnel in State-basedExchanges that are funded through federal Exchange Establishment grants. These proposedstandards would help ensure that Navigators and non-Navigator assistance personnel will be fair andimpartial and will be appropriately trained, and that they will provide services and information in amanner that is accessible. Comments on the proposed rule are due by May 3. 2014 Meaningful Use Eligible Hospital Clinical Quality Measure Update. The Office of theNational Coordinator for Health IT (ONC Health IT) announced that beginning in 2014, the reportingof clinical quality measures (CQMs) will change for all providers. EHR technology that has beencertified to the 2014 Edition standards and certification criteria will have been tested for enhancedCQM-related capabilities, Eligible professionals (EPs), eligible hospitals, and critical access hospitals(CAHs) will be required to report using the new 2014 criteria regardless of whether they areparticipating in Stage 1 or Stage 2 of the Medicare and Medicaid Electronic Health Record (EHR)
  13. 13. Patton Boggs Capital Thinking Weekly Update | April 8, 201312 of 15Incentive Programs. Although clinical quality measure (CQM) reporting has been removed as a coreobjective for both Eligible Professionals (EPs) and eligible hospitals and CAHs, all providers arerequired to report on CQMs in order to demonstrate meaningful use. ONC Health IT states thateligible hospitals and CAHs must report on 16 of 29 approved CQMs. These CQMs must cover atleast 3 of the National Quality Strategy domains. Also beginning in 2014, all Medicare-eligibleproviders beyond their first year of demonstrating meaningful-use must electronically report theirCQM data to CMS. Medicaid eligible professionals and hospitals that are eligible only for theMedicaid EHR Incentive Program will electronically report their CQM data to their State.OTHER HEALTH NEWS IOM Meeting. The Institute of Medicine will hold the first workshop of the Roundtable on PopulationHealth Improvement on Tuesday, April 9. MACPAC Meeting. The Medicaid and CHIP Payment and Access Commission has scheduled apublic meeting on April 11-12. Agenda items include adult dental services under Medicaid, the draftJune report chapters on primary care payment increase, waivers, maternity care in Medicaid andCHIP, access for people with disabilities, program integrity and data. The Commission will also holdsessions on State enrollment policies for Medicaid managed care and care coordination for peopledually eligible for Medicare and Medicaid. RWJF Report on Medicaid Expansion. The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (RWJF) released areport entitled “Financial Burden of Medical Spending by State and the Implications of the 2014Medicaid Expansions.” This report offers a detailed look at medical spending nationwide, and showswhere Medicaid expansion could have the most impact on reducing financial burden. The report findssignificant differences amongst not just States, but also regions of the country. Residents of the Mid-Atlantic States have the lowest out-of-pocket spending burden. Those living in Mountain and EastSouth Central states, in contrast, spend a greater percentage of their incomes on out-of-pocket costsand therefore have a higher burden. Researchers also found that high medical spending for low-income populations vary more across States than for people with higher incomes. The report findsthat many factors may contribute to the considerable geographic variation, including the price of care,how frequently people access it, and the generosity of local safety-net programs.Contact InformationFor additional insights about likely policy developments, please feel free to contact the author of thissection: Eugenia Edwards, at 202-457-5622 or AND LEGISLATIVE BRANCH ACTIVITY Secretary of State Travel. Last weekend, Secretary of State John Kerry departed for Istanbul, tomeet with Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan and other senior Turkish leaders on a
  14. 14. Patton Boggs Capital Thinking Weekly Update | April 8, 201313 of 15variety of subjects, including Syria. The Secretary will be in Jerusalem and Ramallah on Monday andTuesday, April 8 and 9, respectively. In Jerusalem, he will meet with Israeli Prime MinisterNetanyahu; in Ramallah, he will meet with Palestinian Authority President Abbas. On April 10 and11, Secretary Kerry will participate in the G-8 Foreign Ministers Meetings in London. He is expectedto have bilateral meetings on the margins. On April 12-15, the Secretary travels to Northeast Asia,with planned stops in Seoul, Beijing and Tokyo. North Korea. Last Wednesday, North Korea (DPRK) again threatened a nuclear strike against theUnited States. In response, the State Department noted this is just the latest in a long line ofaggressive statements, which only serve to further isolate the DPRK. Moving up a 2015 timeline, theUnited States shifted an advanced missile defense system to Guam, with the White Houseacknowledging North Koreas "warlike" stance presented a "real and clear danger". South Koreanmedia is speculating the North may be planning to fire a medium-range Musudan missile on April 15,the anniversary of the birth of former DPRK leader Kim Il-sung. This week, House Foreign AffairsCommittee Chairman Ed Royce (R-California) is expected to introduce a bill that would attempt to cutoff Pyongyang’s access to hard currency. Syria. After a possible chemical weapon attack was reported in Syria last week, the United Statessaid it will provide technical assistance to a U.N. team that will investigate the allegation.This Week’s Hearings:o On Tuesday, April 9, the House Foreign Affairs Subcommittee on Human Rights will hold ahearing on Human Rights in China. The Administration is not scheduled to testify.o On Thursday, April 11, the House Foreign Affairs Subcommittee on Human Rights will hold ahearing on Vietnamese Government Human Rights Violations in Advance of the U.S.-VietnamDialogue. The Administration is not scheduled to testify.o On Thursday, April 11, the House Foreign Affairs Subcommittees on Asia and the Pacific and theMiddle East and North Africa will hold a joint hearing on Breaking the Iran, North Korea, and SyriaNexus. The Administration is not scheduled to testify.o On Thursday, April 11, the House Foreign Affairs Subcommittee on Western Hemisphere will holda hearing on Energy Opportunities in Latin America and the Caribbean. State DepartmentSpecial Envoy and Coordinator for International Energy Affairs Carlos Pascual and DeputyAssistant Secretary of State for Western Hemisphere Affairs Matthew Rooney are scheduled totestify.NOTE: At the time of publication, the Senate Foreign Relations Committee (SFRC) had yet topost its hearing schedule for this week. Please note President Obama is expected to release hisFY 2014 Budget on Wednesday, April 10. It is expected the SFRC and House Foreign AffairsCommittee will schedule hearings on the President’s proposed FY 2014 Budget. In light ofSecretary Kerry’s travel, the hearings likely will not be scheduled until he returns to Washingtonon April 15.
  15. 15. Patton Boggs Capital Thinking Weekly Update | April 8, 201314 of 15Contact InformationFor additional insights about likely policy developments, please feel free to contact the author of thissection: Stacy Swanson, at 202-457-5627 or and Infrastructure Implementing Sequestration. Congress will be grappling with the impacts of the sequester nextweek, with a group of Senators led by Senator Jerry Moran (R-KS) introducing legislation to preventthe Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) from closing the list of air traffic control towers slated to beclosed (or at least, to lose the FAA funding that had been keeping them open to this point) as a resultof sequestration. While the impacts on FAA and the nation’s airports and air traffic control systemhave been perhaps the highest profile impact of sequestration in the transportation space, otherDepartment of Transportation (DOT) modal administrations are also grappling with the automaticreductions. In particular, Peter Rogoff, Administrator of the Federal Transit Administration (FTA),announced before the Easter Recess that he would be working with Secretary LaHood to develop a“methodology” for allocating the reduced Capital Investment Grants appropriation among New Startsprojects with FTA funding commitments as well as Small Starts projects included in the President’sBudget. This process is continuing. Secretary of Transportation. While neither the White House nor DOT have given any newindications, there is an increasing sense in the stakeholder community that the announcement of anew USDOT Secretary is likely to happen very soon. As President Obama has rounded out most ofhis cabinet appointees, there is increasing sense that the time will be coming for the DOTannouncement. New speculation in recent weeks has focused on the Mayor of Charlotte, AnthonyFoxx. Charlotte hosted the most recent Democratic National Convention and the City has hadsuccessful light rail and streetcar expansions, in addition to being home to a major hub airport.Adding fuel to the fire, Mayor Foxx announced on the morning of Friday, April 5 that he would not beseeking re-election in Charlotte. Water Resources Development Act. Before the Easter Recess, the Senate Environment andPublic Works Committee (EPW) marked up and passed out of committee the Water ResourcesDevelopment Act (WRDA) of 2013 (S.601). The legislation passed on a unanimous vote after theadoption of a Manager’s Amendment and series of en banc amendments, all of which dealt largelywith narrow, technical issues. During the mark-up, Chairman Barbara Boxer (D-CA) indicated thatMajority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) was supportive of moving the bill to the floor as quickly aspossible, and that Minority Leader McConnell (R-KY) was also supportive of floor action on WRDA.There is no word yet on when floor consideration will be scheduled, and the Senate is slated to takeup other measures – including gun control legislation – immediately upon its return from recess. Inthe interim period before floor consideration, key Senators are continuing to work on additions to thebill, including with respect to the Inland Waterways Trust Fund. The House Transportation andInfrastructure (T&I) Subcommittee on Water Resources and Environment has scheduled a hearingtitled “The Foundations for a New Water Resources Development Act” for April 16that 10:00am.
  16. 16. Patton Boggs Capital Thinking Weekly Update | April 8, 201315 of 15 Implementing MAP-21: The House T&I Subcommittee on Highways and Transit has scheduled ahearing titled “Implementing MAP-21: The State and Local Perspective” for April 25that 10:00am. Nowitnesses had been identified as of the time of publication.Contact InformationFor additional insights about likely policy developments, please feel free to contact the authors of thissection: Jessica Monahan at 202-457-6302 or and Jared Fleisher at 202-457-6341 or