House panel advances $46 billion energy bill, defying Trump

House panel advances $46 billion energy bill, defying Trump
© Greg Nash
 
The bill was approved by the Democratic-led panel in a mostly party-line 31-21 vote.
 
“This bill rejects the President’s drastic and short-sighted proposed cuts to key energy and water programs, including a 12% decrease to the Department of Energy, a 31% decrease to the Army Corps of Engineers, and a 28% decrease to the Bureau of Reclamation,” said Rep. Marcy KapturMarcia (Marcy) Carolyn KapturOn The Money: Trump to meet China's vice premier during trade talks | Appeals court says Deutsche Bank doesn't have Trump's tax returns | House Appropriations Chair Nita Lowey to retire DeLauro enters race to succeed Lowey as Appropriations chief House Appropriations Chairwoman Nita Lowey to retire MORE (D-Ohio), who chairs the Subcommittee on Energy and Water.
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The bill, for example, upped spending on advanced energy research through ARPA-E, a program Trump wanted to eliminate completely, by $59 million.
 
It also included a $665.7 million increase for the National Nuclear Security Administration under the Department of Energy, which largely went toward nuclear weapons.
 
Republicans on the committee voiced concern that the bill did not spend enough on the nation's nuclear program, that it did not fund the nuclear repository at the Yucca Mountain site in Nevada, and that it was rushing ahead before final spending caps had been agreed upon.
 
“While the bill includes resources to strengthen our energy and water infrastructure, it does so at unsustainable funding levels, and we do not yet have agreement by Republicans and Democrats in the House, the Senate, and the White House on a budget framework," said Rep. Kay GrangerNorvell (Kay) Kay GrangerCongress hunts for offramp from looming shutdown fight House votes to avert shutdown, fund government through November Lobbying world MORE (R-Texas), the full committee's ranking member. 
 
Leaders from both parties and both chambers met on Tuesday to hammer out a budget caps deal, and said significant progress had been made, though they failed to agree on a final deal.