This week: Highways, water rule top agenda

Congress will turn to debates on the nation's infrastructure this week as lawmakers consider long-term highway funding and a controversial water regulation.

Only one major item is expected on the House floor so far during the first full week of newly minted Speaker Paul RyanPaul Davis RyanMcConnell names Senate GOP tax conferees House Republican: 'I worry about both sides' of the aisle on DACA Overnight Health Care: 3.6M signed up for ObamaCare in first month | Ryan pledges 'entitlement reform' next year | Dems push for more money to fight opioids MORE's (R-Wis.) tenure. The House is expected to vote on a bill to spend up to $325 billion on transportation projects over the next six years - a departure from repeated last-minute temporary funding extensions.

Once it passes the House, negotiators will move toward reconciling differences with their Senate counterparts ahead of a Nov. 20 deadline.

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Congress has relatively little time to get a long-term highway bill done. The House is scheduled to be out on recess next week for the Veterans' Day holiday. And will face the Nov. 20 deadline the following week when they return.

Lawmakers sent a three-week funding patch to the president's desk last week, saying it will give the House and the Senate time to reach a deal on a long-term bill.

Senate Environment and Public Works Committee Chairman James InhofeJames (Jim) Mountain InhofeGOP senator on backing Moore: ‘It’s a numbers game’ Overnight Energy: Panel advances controversial Trump nominee | Ex-coal boss Blankenship to run for Senate | Dem commissioner joins energy regulator Senate panel advances controversial environmental nominee MORE (R-Okla.) said the two chambers should be able to quickly resolve their differences, saying: "I've talked to the likely conferees and they are in accord with the idea that we can do this in a matter of hours and not days."

The Senate passed a six-year bill earlier this year, but the measure only includes three years' worth of guaranteed funding. The House version, meanwhile, would require lawmakers to pass new legislation in order to access additional transportation funding after the first three years.

The House Rules Committee will meet Monday to set up general debate for the measure, and will meet the following day to decide which amendments get floor votes.

Water rule

The Senate will turn to a controversial water regulation from the Obama administration. 

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnellAddison (Mitch) Mitchell McConnellGOP strategist donates to Alabama Democrat McConnell names Senate GOP tax conferees Brent Budowsky: A plea to Alabama voters MORE (R-Ky.) teed up a procedural vote for Tuesday afternoon on ending debate and proceeding to legislation from Sen. John BarrassoJohn Anthony BarrassoScalise: House, Senate ‘pretty close’ on tax bill Top GOP senator: House and Senate 'not that far apart' on tax bill Sunday shows preview: Republicans take victory lap on taxes MORE (R-Wyo.). 

His bill would force the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to go back to the drawing board on a rule defining the federal governments oversight of minor waterways under the Clean Water Act. It would also give the agency specific instructions and a deadline for writing the new regulation. 

The EPA's Waters of the United States rule has gained pushback from Republicans and some Democrats, who argue that it's an overreach that would allow the agency to have oversight of ditches and puddles. 

While the legislation has gained 46 cosponsors—including three Democrats—it's still short of the 60 it will need to overcome Tuesday's procedural hurdle. 

The Senate is also expected to turn to legislation from Sen. Joni Ernst (R-Iowa) that would use the Congressional Review Act — a procedural tactic to streamline blocking regulations — to overturn the EPA regulation.

That legislation—which has 49 backers—would also need to pass the House and also require the president signature, something that is unlikely to happen. 

Keith Laing contributed.