March 16, 2017

Today's News from the U.S. Chamber- 3/16/17

Thursday, March 16, 2017 

Proposal shifts air traffic control outside federal government, cuts funding for transit and Amtrak
The Washington Post 

The Washington Post reports, “President Trump is seeking to shift one of the federal government’s most vital safety functions — making sure airplanes reach their destinations safely — outside government hands, according to his new budget proposal. The president’s proposal calls for moving “the air traffic control function” of the Federal Aviation Administration and its 14,000 controllers ‘to an independent, non-governmental organization.’ The plan says, ‘This would benefit the flying public and the taxpayers overall.’ Airline executives, citing government inefficiencies and lagging technology efforts, have long pushed to privatize the nation’s air traffic control system, and they pressed their case in a White House meeting with Trump last month.”

Trump to repeal Obama fracking rule
The Hill  

The Hill reports, “The Trump administration is planning to repeal former President Barack Obama’s landmark 2015 rule setting standards for hydraulic fracturing on federal land. Justice Department lawyers revealed the decision late Wednesday in a filing with the Denver-based Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit, where the federal government under had been fighting against the oil and natural gas industry and conservative states to get the rule reinstated. It is the latest in a series of high-profile Obama environmental rules the Trump administration is repealing or working to change.”

Debt ceiling returns, creating new headache for GOP
The Hill 

The Hill reports, “The legal limit on how much the United States government can borrow returns on Thursday, potentially setting up an intense political battle in Congress. Lawmakers will have until sometime this autumn to raise the debt ceiling before the Treasury runs out of ways to make essential payments, putting the nation at risk of its first-ever debt default. The debt limit is a major test for the Trump administration and Republican congressional leaders who’ve sought major spending cuts before previous increases in the debt ceiling.”

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