Week ahead: Energy secretary takes budget hot seat

Administration officials face a busy week with multiple trips to Capitol Hill for hearings on President Obama's last budget request.

Energy Secretary Ernest MonizErnest MonizObama energy secretary criticizes Trump on oil reserve Obama energy secretary launches nonprofit Overnight Energy: Zinke, Perry take heat over Trump budget MORE will be on the hot seat before both the House and the Senate to defend the fiscal 2017 request for the Energy Department.

The administration is trying to focus attention on its plans to double clean energy research and development funding over five years. But Republican lawmakers are likely to devote much attention to Obama's plan to put a $10.25 tax on each barrel of oil.

Moniz's first budget hearing will be Tuesday, when he appears before the House Appropriations Committee's subpanel on energy and water, as the sole witness.

He'll be back on Capitol Hill Wednesday to pitch the budget to the energy and power subpanel of the House Energy and Commerce Committee.

Moniz then returns again Thursday, heading to the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee to talk again about the budget.

Congress is planning to dive into other parts of Obama's request as well.

Interior Secretary Sally JewellSally JewellOutdoor gear companies take on Trump Overnight Regulation: Trump administration lifts Obama freeze on federal coal mining Trump administration ends Obama's coal-leasing freeze MORE will present her department's budget to the House Appropriations Committee's panel on the Interior Department and the Environmental Protection Agency at a Wednesday hearing.

The same panel will meet Thursday with Joseph Pizarchik for a hearing on the Office of Surface Mining Reclamation and Enforcement, which is part of Interior.

Some of the Energy Department's specific programs will get a closer look Wednesday in the House Appropriations Committee, with hearings on the applied energy and science programs.

Elsewhere on Capitol Hill, the House will press forward on its efforts to reauthorize the pipeline safety programs of the Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration, with a Tuesday hearing before the House Energy and Commerce Committee's energy and power panel.

The House Science Committee will meet Thursday to discuss the Energy Department's loan programs.

The Senate Finance Committee is scheduled Tuesday to hold a hearing on multiemployer pension plans, including a massive one for coal miners managed by the United Mine Workers of America. Many coal-state senators say it needs to be shored up and possibly reformed following major coal bankruptcies. Cecil Roberts, the union's president, will testify.

Off Capitol Hill, the Energy Department's Advanced Research Projects Agency - Energy will hold its annual research summit. The event, from Monday to Wednesday, will feature speeches from Moniz, former Vice President Al GoreAl GoreOvernight Energy: Exxon sues feds over M fine | Deputy Interior pick advances | Oil concerns hold up Russia sanctions push Gore: Progressive ideas 'gaining ground' among Democrats Gore: Trump prompting 'biggest upsurge' of climate activism ever MORE, EPA Administrator Gina McCarthyGina McCarthyLiberal group files lobbying complaint against Pruitt Trump’s budget prioritizes polluters over people Trump pulls US out of Paris deal: What it would mean MORE, Sen. Lisa MurkowskiLisa MurkowskiTough road ahead for McConnell on ObamaCare Overnight Healthcare: Senate votes to begin ObamaCare repeal debate | McCain returns to vote | GOP floats scaled-down healthcare bill Webb: Repeal, replace, pass or fail MORE (R-Alaska) and others.


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