This week: Congress confronts Sandy funding as 113th settles in

Meanwhile, Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke is slated to speak Monday on the state of the nation’s monetary policy and the economy. His comments come as the Fed continues to take extreme steps to bolster the nation’s economy; Bernanke has said he continues to have underlying concerns about the recovery, which is only growing moderately. 

The Federal Reserve will release the latest version of its “beige book” on Wednesday. The beige book, released regularly by the central bank, provides an anecdotal take on the state of the economy across the country. Fed officials ask business contacts nationwide what they are seeing in terms of activity to paint a picture of where the economy stands.

That same day, Richard Fisher, president of the Dallas Federal Reserve Bank, will appear at the National Press Club to continue building his case for breaking up the nation’s largest financial institutions. One of the more conservative Fed officials, Fisher has been an outspoken advocate for breaking up “too big to fail” banks.

On Tuesday, the Brookings Institution will be discussing what can be done to bolster the private sector through government action, and will be tapping the expertise of a range of CEOs and business experts during the daylong event.

And from Wednesday to Friday, House Republicans will gather in Williamsburg for their annual conference meeting. With a number of fiscal fights just over the horizon, including battles over raising the debt limit, avoiding the sequester and keeping the government up and running, this early event in the 113th Congress will include plenty of talk about how Republicans will approach the ongoing debate.

On Monday, the House Ways and Means Committee will hold an organizational meeting. The panel is expected to have a busy 2013, as Chairman Dave Camp (R-Mich.) has been adamant that he wants to pursue comprehensive tax reform.