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 RyanNew Dem ad uses Paterno, KKK, affair allegations to tar GOP leaders House Dem: Party's aging leaders is 'a problem' Rand Paul to ask Trump to lift sanctions on Russian leaders 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 InhofePence announces first steps in establishing 'Space Force' EPA chief: Obama car rule rollback would save consumers 0B EPA’s Wheeler gets warmer welcome at Senate hearing 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 McConnellSen. Warner to introduce amendment limiting Trump’s ability to revoke security clearances The Hill's 12:30 Report Rand Paul to ask Trump to lift sanctions on Russian leaders MORE (R-Ky.) teed up a procedural vote for Tuesday afternoon on ending debate and proceeding to legislation from Sen. John BarrassoJohn Anthony BarrassoOvernight Energy: Trump EPA to defend Obama smog rule | Wheeler gets warmer welcome before Senate | Animal rights groups sue Interior over pro-hunting council EPA’s Wheeler gets warmer welcome at Senate hearing Trump has no plans to endorse in Tennessee GOP governor's race: report 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.