By S-3 Public Affairs

FACT OF THE WEEK

While NCAA upsets may have busted your bracket, it’s good news for some. Time reports, “By becoming the first No. 16 seed to beat a No. 1, the Retrievers made about $1.7 million for the America East Conference. Loyola-Chicago’s buzzer-beating run to the Sweet 16 will be worth double that to the Missouri Valley Conference. Nevada’s consecutive comebacks were also worth about $3.4 million for the Mountain West. The MVC and Mountain West will pocket at least as much from NCAA Tournament units as the Pac-12, which had three teams in the field, all bounced after one game each.

“Units are what the NCAA calls its revenue distributions from the basketball performance fund, which rewards teams for tournament performance. The NCAA Tournament generates more than $700 million in revenue for the association and its schools, the vast majority from its media rights deal with CBS and Turner.”

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IN THE MEDIA

Technology skills are not just something that are reported on – they’re also increasingly necessary within the newsroom. Columbia Journalism Review reports, “A new study from the Tow Center for Digital Journalism examines the career trajectories of New York City journalists to better understand how technical skills have developed in newsrooms since 2010. To do so, we collected the employment histories for 6,116 newsroom staffers and freelancers for newspaper, broadcast, and digital-first companies in the New York City metropolitan area. The 24,598 jobs worked by those individuals were manually aggregated from LinkedIn and verified using other sources, then coded for analysis.

“We find that data, analytic, and platform-based (DAP) jobs have grown substantially in newspaper and online media companies, now accounting for an estimated 9 percent of all jobs in those companies, while the share of traditional, non-DAP jobs decreased 8 percent in online media (9 percent in newspapers and 5 percent in broadcast). These skills have quickly become critical to the day-to-day functioning of newsrooms.”

IN THE ADMINISTRATION

Reuters reports, “U.S. President Donald Trump said on Friday that a comprehensive trade deal with South Korea was close to being done, and his Commerce Department chief said a deal could be formally announced next week.” Cleveland.com adds, “President Donald Trump will visit Richfield, Ohio on Thursday, March 29 to discuss his infrastructure initiatives, White House officials said Friday.”

ON THE HILL

The House and Senate are both out this week and next.

By S-3 Public Affairs

FACT OF THE WEEK

A recent Pew Research survey found, “26% of American adults now report that they go online “almost constantly,” up from 21% in 2015 …  Overall, 77% of Americans go online on a daily basis. … Among mobile internet users – the 83% of Americans who use the internet at least occasionally using a smartphone, tablet or other mobile device – 89% go online daily and 31% go online almost constantly. Among Americans who go online but not via a mobile device, by comparison, 54% go online daily and just 5% say they go online almost constantly.”

Not surprisingly, the numbers are higher for younger generations. “Younger adults are at the vanguard of the constantly connected: Roughly four-in-ten 18- to 29-year-olds (39%) now go online almost constantly and 49% go online multiple times per day. … Americans ages 30 to 49 are now about as likely as younger adults to use the internet almost constantly (36% versus 39%). The share of 30- to 49-year olds who say this has risen 12 percentage points since 2015.

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IN THE MEDIA

The newest way to reach a sophisticated audience: Branded Podcasts. FastCompany reports on a new trend in which companies, such as ZipRecruiter, are producing an entire podcast series that itself is the advertisement. The series, “amplify a brand’s story, and find an audience of like-minded folks delivered free to consumers.”

Why are companies making such a big investment? “Podcast advertising is on track to hit more than $220 million in 2017, up 85% from 2016. And now that Apple Podcasts is delivering analytics on listeners, advertisers can rest assured that listeners are paying attention. NPR says it’s found that 75% of listeners took action on a sponsored message.”

“Around 67 million people ages 12 and over listen to podcasts each month, according to findings that Edison Research published earlier this year. That’s 21% of Americans, or roughly the same number who use Twitter on a monthly basis. The audience tends to be affluent and educated, and really likes the shows that they click on—a whopping 85% of people who start a podcast listen to all or most of it.”

IN THE ADMINISTRATION

President Trump plans to travel to New Hampshire Monday. WMUR reports the president, “will hold an event at Manchester Community College and then stop at the Manchester Central Fire Station. Additional details have yet to be disclosed.” The president is expected to address the opioid epidemic.

“Next Thursday, three days after Trump’s visit, Vice President Mike Pence is scheduled to make a political appearance at a fundraiser for Gov. Chris Sununu.”

ON THE HILL

Primary focus this week is on an omnibus government funding package; the current government funding bill expires Friday. Administration officials also head to the Hill this week to continue hearings on FY2019 budget requests.

Monday (March 19): Senate votes on the nomination of Kevin McAleenan to be commissioner of U.S. Customs and Border Protection and on cloture on motion to proceed to the Allow States and Victims to Fight Online Sex Trafficking Act; House Rules Committee meeting to consider the Alleviating Stress Test Burdens to Help Investors Act;

Tuesday (March 20): House Appropriations Subcommittee hearings on the FY2019 budget requests of the Departments of Commerce (with testimony from Secretary Wilbur Ross), Housing of Urban Development (with testimony from Secretary Ben Carson), Education (with testimony from Secretary Betsy DeVos), and National Nuclear Security AdministrationHouse Armed Services Committee hearing on the FY2019 budget request and acquisition reform progress, with testimony from Army Secretary Mark Esper, Navy Secretary Richard Spencer, and Air Force Secretary Heather Wilson, and subcommittee hearings on Navy readiness posture and options for submarine industrial base constructionSenate Energy and Natural Resources Committee hearing on the FY2019 budget request for the Energy Department, with testimony from Secretary Rick Perry; Senate Armed Services Committee hearing on U.S. Strategic Command and subcommittee hearing on Marine Corps ground modernization in review of the FY2019 Defense Authorization request; Senate Judiciary Committee hearing on reauthorization of the Violence Against Women Act; Senate Finance Committee hearing on the nominations of John Bartrum (to be assistant secretary of Health and Human Services for financial resources) and Lynn Johnson (to be assistant secretary of Health and Human Services for family support); Senate Environment and Public Works Subcommittee hearing on the nomination of John Ryder to the board of directors of the Tennessee Valley Authority; Senate Foreign Relations Committee business meeting to consider 7 resolutions, 5 treaties, and 7 nominations; Senate Commerce Subcommittee hearing to examine NHTSA and automaker efforts to repair defective Takata airbag inflators; House Energy and Commerce Subcommittee hearings on the Drug Enforcement Administration’s role in combating the opioid epidemic, with testimony from Acting DEA Administrator Robert Patterson, and the FY2019 Nuclear Regulatory Commission budgetHouse Natural Resources Subcommittee oversight hearing on the administration’s policy priorities of the FY2019 budget for Indian Affairs and Insular Areas and legislative hearing on two National Park Restoration Fund bills; House Financial Services Subcommittee hearing on the financial nexus of terrorism, drug trafficking, and organized crime; House Judiciary Subcommittee hearings on law enforcement information sharing and preventable violence and the effectiveness of the transitional program for covered business method patentsHouse Small Business Subcommittee hearing on advancing apprenticeships for small business; House Veterans’ Affairs Committee legislative hearing on 4 bills and subcommittee legislative hearing on economic opportunity; House Oversight and Government Reform and Homeland Security Joint Subcommittee hearing to hear government perspectives on CDM security and modernization; House Education and Workforce Subcommittee hearing to examine the Labor Department’s proposed rule on association health plans; House Transportation and Infrastructure Subcommittee hearing on the impacts of the 2017 wildfires in the United States; Business Roundtable and Farmers for Free Trade discussion on trade and American competitiveness with Senate Finance Committee Chairman Orrin Hatch (R-UT) and former Sen. Max Baucus (R-MT); Washington Post Live event on artificial intelligence, featuring Sens. Maria Cantwell (D-WA) and Todd Young (R-IN);

Wednesday (March 21): House Ways and Means Committee hearing on U.S. trade policy agenda, with testimony from U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer, and subcommittee hearing on implementation of MACRA’s physician payment policies; Senate Budget Committee hearing on the economic report of the President, with testimony from Council of Economic Advisers Chairman Kevin Hassett; Senate Intelligence Committee open hearing on election security; Senate Judiciary Committee hearing on the nominations of Michael Scudder (to be Circuit Judge for the Seventh Circuit), Amy St. Eve (to be Circuit Judge for the Seventh Circuit), and Charles Williams (to be District Judge for the Northern District of Iowa); Senate Foreign Relations Committee hearing on the nominations of Kirsten Madison (to be assistant secretary of State for international narcotics and law enforcement affairs) and Thomas Hushek (to be ambassador to the Republic of South Sudan) and subcommittee hearing on Lebanon’s stability and security challenges; Senate Veterans’ Affairs Committee hearing on the FY2019 budget for veterans’ programs and FY2020 advance appropriations request; Senate Environment and Public Works Committee oversight hearing of the Nuclear Regulatory Commission; Senate Armed Services Subcommittee hearings on ballistic missile defense policies and programs and Navy shipbuilding programs in review of the FY2019 Defense Authorization request; House Appropriations Subcommittee hearings on the FY2019 budget requests of the Department of Agriculture (with testimony from Secretary Sonny Perdue), National Oceanic and Atmospheric AdministrationOpen World Leadership Trust Fund, and Energy, Installations, and EnvironmentHouse Foreign Affairs Committee hearing on the FY2019 foreign assistance budget, with testimony from USAID Administrator Mark Green and subcommittee hearings on U.S. responses to China’s foreign influence operations and implications of a U.S.-Saudi Arabia nuclear cooperation agreement for the Middle EastHouse Armed Services Subcommittee hearings to receive national security recommendations on state and non-state actor influence operations and on the FY2019 budget requests for ground force modernization and military personnel postureHouse Energy and Commerce Subcommittee hearing on 25 bills to combat the opioid crisis; House Financial Services Committee markup of 8 bills; House Natural Resources Committee markup of 4 bills and subcommittee oversight hearing of the proposed FY2019 spending, priorities and missions of the Bureau of Reclamation and the Power Marketing Administrations; House Oversight and Government Reform Subcommittee joint hearing on improper payments in state-administered Medicaid programs and hearing on bureaucratic challenges to hurricane recovery in Puerto Rico; House Science, Space & Technology Committee markup of the American Leadership in Space Technology and Advanced Rocketry Act, Commercial Space Support Vehicle Act, and Innovators to Entrepreneurs Act and subcommittee hearing on empowering U.S. veterans through technology; House Administration Committee hearing on the role of shared employees in the House; The Hill’s Newsmaker Series event with Sen. Lamar Alexander (R-TN) and Reps. Nanette Barragán (D-CA) and Joe Crowley (D-NY);

Thursday (March 22): Senate Finance Committee hearing on the President’s 2018 trade policy agenda, with testimony from U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer; Senate Banking Committee oversight hearing of the Department of Housing and Urban Development, with testimony from Secretary Ben Carson; Senate Armed Services Committee hearing on challenges in the Department of Energy’s atomic energy defense programs in review of the FY2019 Defense Authorization request, with testimony from Secretary Rick Perry; Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee hearing to examine the 2018 Western Supply Outlook and three water infrastructure and drought resilience bills; Senate Commerce Subcommittee hearing to examine enhancements to the Marine Mammal Protection Act; House Ways and Means Committee hearing on U.S. trade policy agenda, with testimony from Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross; House Intelligence Committee business meeting to adopt the Committee’s investigative report into Russia’s active measures during the 2016 election; House Appropriations Subcommittee hearing on the FY2019 budget request of the Energy Department’s applied energy programs; House Armed Services Subcommittee hearings on the FY2019 budget request for nuclear forces and atomic energy defense activities and the Defense Department’s strategy, policy and programs for countering weapons of mass destruction in FY2019House Energy and Commerce Subcommittee legislative hearing on four communications bills; 

Friday (March 23): Stopgap government funding bill expires; House Veterans’ Affairs Committee field hearing on VA community care in North Carolina.

By S-3 Public Affairs

FACT OF THE WEEK

Mashable reports on how Slack employees use Slack themselves, and its incredible growth since its start: “Slack officially launched in 2014 as a side-project from Flickr cofounder Stewart Butterfield. When Fast Company spoke with Butterfield the next year, the service had 500,000 daily users. Now, it has more than 6 million daily users with at least 3 million more using it every week.”

Techcrunch adds a note about a new feature that seeks to help you stay organized in Slack. “Over two years after leaving Aol (now known as Oath) back in September 2015 to build a new startup, serial entrepreneur Ryan Block, with co-founder Brian LeRoux, is finally taking the wraps off the new venture:Begin, an intelligent app designed to help you keep track of things that you have to do, and when you should do them, as they come up in the stream of a messaging app. By extension, Begin is also solving one of the more persistent problems of messaging apps: losing track of things you need to remember in the wider thread of the conversation. Begin is launching today as an integration on Slack — which also happens to be one of its backers, by way of the Slack Fund.”

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THE MEDIA

With Opening Day approach (March 29 – Nats home opener April 5), Bloomberg reports, “Facebook Inc. reached a deal with Major League Baseball for exclusive rights to stream 25 afternoon games on the social network in the U.S. It’s the first time a major U.S. league has agreed to show regular season games exclusively on Facebook, which has been building a portfolio of live sports. MLB owners unanimously approved the move, the league said. Neither MLB nor Facebook disclosed the financial terms, though people with knowledge of the matter put the price at $30 million to $35 million.”

IN THE ADMINISTRATION

The Hill reports, “President Trump will visit California next week to inspect border wall prototypes along the U.S. border with Mexico, the White House said Wednesday. While there, Trump is expected to travel to San Diego to view the eight prototypes for the president’s long-promised border wall.

ON THE HILL

Budget negotiations continue both for current year funding as well as looking ahead to 2019 appropriations, with several cabinet officials testifying this week. Additionally, the Senate will continue consideration of legislation that will roll back some Dodd-Frank provisions. The House will consider legislation aimed at improving school safety as well as a number of financial services bills. Also Tuesday, the special election in Pennsylvania to fill former Rep. Tim Murphy’s seat.

Monday (March 12): Senate cloture vote on the Economic Growth, Regulatory Relief, and Consumer Protection Act; House Oversight and Subcommittee field hearing on the impact of the 2017 hurricane on the U.S. Virgin Islands, to be held in St. Thomas; House Veterans’ Affairs Subcommittee field hearing on maximizing resources in Puerto Rico, to be held in San Juan; National League of Cities 2018 Congressional City Conference (through March 14)Federal Managers Association’s 80th National Convention (through March 14);

Tuesday (March 13): Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee hearing on the FY2019 budget request for the Interior Department, with testimony from Secretary Ryan Zinke; Senate Armed Services Committeehearing on U.S. Central Command and Africa Command and subcommittee hearing on the cyber posture of the Services in review of the FY2019 defense authorization request; Senate Judiciary Committee hearing on the Freedom of Information Act, including the administration’s progress on reforms; Senate Commerce Subcommittee hearings on investing in next generation broadband and state and local transportation needs; Senate Foreign Relations Committee hearing on state fragility, growth, and development, with testimony from Commission on State Fragility, Growth and Development Chairman David Cameron; House Rules Committee meeting to consider the TAILOR Act, Regulation At Improvement Act, and Financial Institutions Examination Fairness and Reform Act; American Enterprise Institute eventon the opioid crisis with Sen. Mike Lee (R-UT);

Wednesday (March 14): House Appropriations Subcommittee FY2019 budget hearings on the Air Force (with testimony from Air Force Secretary Heather Wilson and Chief of Staff Gen. David Goldfein) and U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and Bureau of Reclamation (with testimony from a panel including Secretary of the Army for Civil Works R.D. James and Bureau of Reclamation Commissioner Brenda Burman); House Transportation and Infrastructure Subcommittee hearing to review the FY2019 budget request for the Coast Guard and maritime transportation programs; House Armed Services Subcommittee hearings on space warfighting readinessthe Air Force’s FY2019 budget request for sea power and projection forces, and the FY2019 budget request for the Defense Department’s science and technology programs; House Homeland Security Subcommittee hearing on the FY2019 budget request for the Transportation Security Administration; Senate Commerce Committee hearing on administration perspectives for rebuilding infrastructure, with testimony from Transportation Secretary Elaine Chao and Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross; Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee hearing on the nominations of Theodore Garrish (to be assistant secretary of Energy for international affairs) and James Capos (to be director of the Energy Department’s Office of Minority Economic Impact); Senate Judiciary Committee hearing on legislative proposals to improve school safety and oversight of the Parkland shooting; Senate Small Business and Entrepreneurship Committee hearing on the nominations of David Tryon (to be chief counsel of the Small Business Administrator) and Hannibal Ware (to be SBA’s inspector general); Senate Environment and Public Works Committee hearing on the Agriculture Creates Rural Employment (ACRE) Act; Senate Armed Services Subcommittee hearing on the Department of Energy atomic energy defense activities and programs; Senate Veterans’ Affairs and House Veterans’ Affairs Committee joint legislative presentation of multiple veterans service organizationsSenate Foreign Relations Subcommittee hearings on Somalia’s current security and stability status and food securityHouse Foreign Affairs Committee hearing on protecting cutting-edge technology and national security through modernizing export controls; House Ways and Means Subcommittee hearing to examine recently expired tax provisions;House Oversight and Government Reform Committee hearing on the federal regulatory process and subcommittee hearing on the state of play for federal IT in 2018; House Financial Services Subcommittee hearing to examine cryptocurrencies and ICO markets; House Energy and Commerce Subcommittee hearings on legislation addressing cybersecurity and emergency response in Energy Department modernization and reauthorization of animal drug user fees ADUFA and AGDUFA; House Budget Committee oversight hearing of the Congressional Budget Office with testimony from former CBO Directors Alice Rivlin and Doug Holtz-Eakin, Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget President Maya MacGuineas, and Bipartisan Policy Center senior advisor Sandy Davis; House Rules Committee meetingto consider the Financial Stability Oversight Council Improvement Act and Stress Test Improvement Act; House Natural Resources Committee markupof 6 bills; American Council on Renewable Energy’s Policy Forumwith keynote speeches from Sens. Maria Cantwell (D-WA), Lisa Murkowski (R-AK), Ron Wyden (D-OR), and Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI); Congressional Hispanic Caucus Institute Energy Summit; Cato Institute event on the Base Realignment and Closure (BRAC) process, with House Armed Services Committee Ranking Member Adam Smith (D-WA);Center for American Progress event on the future of Asia, with keynote remarks from Rep. Joaquin Castro (D-TX);

Thursday (March 15): Congress hosts the annual Friends of Ireland luncheonhosted by House Speaker Paul Ryan (R-WI) with President Donald Trump and Irish Prime Minister Leo Varadkar scheduled to participate; House Appropriations Subcommittee FY2019 budget hearings for the Department of Health and Human Services (with testimony from HHS Secretary Alex Azar), Department of Transportation (with testimony from Transportation Secretary Elaine Chao), Department of Energy (with testimony from Energy Secretary Rick Perry), Department of Veterans Affairs (with testimony from VA Secretary David Shulkin), Army (with testimony from Army Secretary Mark Esper and Chief of Staff Gen. Mark Milley), and the Department of Agriculture’s Office of the Inspector GeneralHouse Natural Resources Committee oversight hearing of the Interior Department’s policy priorities and FY2019 budget proposal, with testimony from Secretary Ryan Zinke, and subcommittee oversight hearing on abandoned hardrock mines and the role of non-governmental entities; House Veterans’ Affairs Subcommittee hearings on the VA’s FY2019 budget requests for the Veterans Health Administration and Veterans Benefit Administration and Board of Veterans’ AppealsSenate Foreign Relations Committee hearing on the State Department’s FY2019 budget request and redesign plans, with testimony from Secretary of State Rex Tillerson; Senate Armed Services Committee hearing on U.S. Pacific Command in review of the FY2019 defense authorization request; Senate HELP Committee hearing on the 340B drug discount program; House Homeland Security Committee hearing on preparedness, response, and rebuilding lessons from last year’s natural disasters and subcommittee hearingon U.S. Customs and Border Protection; House Armed Services Committee hearing on security challenges in Europe and posture for interstate competition with Russia and subcommittee hearings on the FY2019 budget requests for the Air Force’s airborne intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance programsand national security space programs; House Science, Space & Technology Committee hearing on the FY2019 budget request for the National Science Foundation; House Financial Services Subcommittee hearings on the administration’s perspective of CFIUS and the monetization and illicit use of stolen data; House Transportation and Infrastructure Subcommittee hearing on water resources projects and policy; House Oversight and Government Reform Subcommittee hearing on the federal permitting process; House Foreign Affairs Committee markup of 2 bills and 2 resolutions; Heritage Foundation event on countering authoritarianism and advancing U.S. interests in Latin America, featuring keynote remarks from Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL); National Press Club Headliners luncheon with Sen. Jeff Flake (R-AZ); The Atlantic Council events on strategic oil product stockholding, with remarks from Rep. John Shimkus (R-IL), and the U.S.-Georgia partnership, featuring keynote remarks from Sen. Amy Klobuchar (D-MN) and Republic of Georgia President Giorgi Margvelashvili; 

Friday (March 16): House Financial Services Subcommittee oversight hearing of the SEC’s enforcement division; House Judiciary Subcommittee oversight hearing of the Federal Bureau of Prisons.

By S-3 Public Affairs

The natural food industry continues to grow, even attracting the attention of venture capitalists. The Wall Street Journal reports on the upcoming Natural Products Expo West, “the niche food sector’s version of the Consumer Electronics Show. … Sales of food made with less-processed ingredients have risen 15% since 2014, more than double the rate of conventional foods, according to Nielsen data. … Investors have also flocked to the event as venture capitalists and an increasing number of big banks look to food startups to try to drive returns. Venture-capital investors closed on more than $1.1 billion worth of food-product deals last year, more than five times the amount in 2012, according to an analysis by PitchBook Data Inc.” 

BONUS FACT: United Launch Alliance this week had its 126th successful launch.

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IN THE MEDIA

Digital Trends reports on a new report from Pew Research that finds, “Facebook and YouTube remain the leaders in terms of social media consumption. Pew reports that 68 percent of all Americans use Facebook, and three-quarters of those users access the site on a daily basis. Among those under the age of 65, Facebook appears to be a fairly universal platform, with a wide range of demographics represented on the site.

“While not a traditional social media site, YouTube does compete with similar sites for user screen time and advertiser dollars. We don’t know the details of YouTube’s financials, but Pew reports that it is doing a good job of capturing user attention. Roughly 74 percent of adults use YouTube (did that redesign help or hurt?), but that number gets even more impressive when looking at the 18-24 demographic. Among younger users, 94 percent of them say they visit YouTube on their computers or smartphones.”

IN THE ADMINISTRATION

President Trump is expected to sign new tariffs on steel and aluminum next week after he announced the move this past Thursday. The president is also reportedly meeting with video game makers this week in the wake of the Florida school shooting.

ON THE HILL

Negotiations continue toward a government funding bill this week, ahead of the March 23 deadline. Also this week the Senate will vote on a financial services bill – rolling back parts of Dodd-Frank. Reuters reports that the bill has strong bipartisan backing in the Senate and that the bill’s main sponsor, Senator Crapo is looking for policies to add to help accelerate passage in the House. Meanwhile, the House this week is expected to consider two bills aimed at easing EPA rules on air pollution.

Monday (March 5): Senate vote on the confirmation of three district court nominees; House Rules Committee meeting to consider the Satisfying Energy Needs and Saving the Environment Act and Blocking Regulatory Interference from Closing Kilns Act; International Association of Fire Fighters legislative conference (through March 6); America Israel Public Affairs Committee policy conference (through March 6);

Tuesday (March 6): Texas primaries; House Appropriations Subcommittee hearings on the FY2019 Treasury and Labor Department budgets, with testimony from Treasury and Labor Secretaries Steven Mnuchin and Alex Acosta; House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee hearing to examine the administration’s infrastructure proposal, with testimony from Transportation Secretary Elaine Chao; Senate Armed Services Committee hearing on worldwide threats, with testimony from Director of National Intelligence Dan Coats and Defense Intelligence Agency Director Lt. Gen. Robert Ashley Jr., and subcommittee hearing on Navy and Marine Corps aviation programsSenate Energy and Natural Resources Committee hearing on the nomination of James Reilly to be director of the U.S. Geological Survey; Senate Finance Committee hearing on protecting e-commerce consumers from counterfeits; Senate and House Veterans’ Affairs Committee joint legislative presentation of multiple veterans service organizations; House Armed Services Subcommittee hearings on the Navy’s FY2019 budget request for seapower and projection forcesnational security challenges and U.S. military activities in Africa, and Marine Corps readiness posture; House Financial Services Committee markup of FY2019 budget views and estimates; House Energy and Commerce Subcommittee oversight hearing of the National Telecommunications and Information Administration, with testimony from Assistant Commerce Secretary for Communications and Information David Redl; House Small Business Subcommittee hearing on rural broadband and the business case for small carriers; House Oversight and Government Reform Subcommittee hearing examining the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and roundtable discussion with Jerusalem Mayor Nir Barkat; House Judiciary Subcommittee hearing to examine class action lawsuits against intermediate care facilities for individuals with intellectual disabilities; House Natural Resources Subcommittee oversight hearing on solutions to reduce the Interior Department’s maintenance backlog; House Science, Space & Technology Subcommittee hearing on the future of U.S. fusion energy research; House Education and Workforce Subcommittee hearing on strengthening welfare to work with child care; Roll Call Live/CQ News event on healthcare, with speakers including Reps. Peter Roskam (R-IL) and Sandy Levin (D-MI);

Wednesday (March 7): Joint Economic Committee hearing to receive the Economic Report of the President, with testimony from Council of Economic Advisers Chairman Kevin Hassett; House Appropriations Subcommittee hearings on the Commodity Futures Trading Commission’s FY2019 budget, with testimony from Chairman Chris Giancarlo, and the Navy and Marine Corps’ FY2019 budget, with testimony from Navy Secretary Richard Spencer, Marine Corps Commandant Gen. Robert Neller, and Chief of Naval Operations Adm. John Richardson; House Science, Space & Technology Subcommittee hearing on the NASA budget for FY2019, with testimony from Acting Administrator Robert Lightfoot; Senate Budget Committee hearing on the Defense Department’s audit and business operations reform at the Pentagon; Senate Judiciary Committee hearing on the nominations of John Nalbandian (to be U.S. Circuit Judge for the Sixth Circuit), Kari Dooley (to be District Judge for the District of Connecticut), Dominic Lanza (to be District Judge for the District of Arizona), Jill Otake (to be District Judge for the District of Hawaii), and Joseph Hunt (to be Assistant Attorney General of the Civil Division), and subcommittee hearing on small business bankruptcy; Senate Foreign Relations Committee hearing on the nomination of Joseph Macmanus to be ambassador to Colombia; Senate and House Veterans’ Affairs Committee joint legislative presentation of Veterans of Foreign Wars; Senate HELP Committee executive session to vote on various nominations; Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee business meeting to consider the Department of Homeland Security Authorization Act and nomination of Michael Atkinson to be inspector general of the intelligence community; Senate Special Committee on Aging hearing on “stopping senior scams”; House Homeland Security Committee markup of 11 bills and subcommittee hearing on DHS’ efforts to strengthen its cybersecurity workforce following a recent GAO report; House Armed Services Committee hearing to assess military service acquisition reform and subcommittee hearings on U.S. strategic forces posture and the FY2019 budget request and the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter Lightning II programHouse Budget Committee hearing on CBO oversight with testimony from Members of the House; House Veterans’ Affairs Committee oversight and legislative hearing on two bills and two draft bills; House Financial Services Subcommittee hearings to review the State Insurance Regulation Preservation Act and two legislative proposals to reform the current data security and breach notification regulatory regimeHouse Energy and Commerce Subcommittee hearings on emerging tech’s impact on retail operations and logistics and the future of transportation fuels and vehiclesHouse Transportation and Infrastructure Subcommittee hearings on long-term funding for highways and transit programs and implementation of Coast Guard programsHouse Ways and Means Subcommittee hearing on challenges facing the Social Security Administration after over 5 years of acting commissioners; House Oversight and Government Reform Subcommittee hearing on artificial intelligence and the federal government; House Natural Resources Committee markup of the National Strategic and Critical Minerals Production Act, Federal Land Transaction Facilitation Act Reauthorization and a bill to extend retained use estate in in the Virgin Islands; House Foreign Affairs Subcommittee hearing on China’s role in Africa; House Administration Committee hearing on management of the Government Publishing Office; America’s Health Insurance Plans National Health Policy Conference (through March 8); Ripon Society event on “The New NAFTA” with Sen. Jerry Moran (R-KS) and Rep. Will Hurd (R-TX); The Latino Coalition legislative summit;

Thursday (March 8): Senate HELP Committee hearing on state leadership and innovation in the opioid crisis; Senate Armed Services Committee hearing on U.S. European Command; House Armed Services Subcommittee hearings on Mobility and Transportation Command posture and Arlington National CemeteryHouse Energy and Commerce Subcommittee hearing on U.S. public health preparedness for and response efforts to seasonal influenza; Democratic National Committee winter meeting (through March 10).

The Bipartisan Budget Act Congress passed last month provides funding through March 23. 

Senate is expected to consider: nominations; funding the federal government, gun control legislation, S.2155, the bipartisan Dodd/Frank reform legislation, and S.1693, the Stop Enabling Sex Traffickers Act. Also on the agenda is FAA extension/reauthorization and flood insurance.

House is expected to consider: funding the federal government; FAA extension/authorization.

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February 28-March 1: Rev. Billy Graham to lie in honor in the U.S. Capitol Rotunda
March 1: Federal Reserve Chairman Powell testifies before the Senate Banking Committee; Securities and Exchange Commission closed meeting; U.S. Chamber of Commerce 2018 Aviation Summit
March 4-6: America Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC) Policy Conference in Washington, DC
March 6: Texas primaries; House Appropriations Committee hearings on the FY19 budget for the Departments of Labor and Treasury; seventh round of NAFTA renegotiations in Mexico City conclude; Roll Call Live/CQ News event on healthcare.
March 7: House Appropriations Committee hearings on the FY19 budget for the Commodity Futures Trading Commission and Navy and Marine Corps; Council of Economic Advisers Chairman Kevin Hassett testifies before the Joint Economic Committee
March 7-8: America’s Health Insurance Plans (AHIP) National Health Policy Conference in Washington, DC
March 8: SEC Investor Advisory Committee quarterly meeting
March 9: Bureau of Labor Statistics releases monthly jobs report
March 9-18: South by Southwest (SXSW) Conference & Festivals in Austin, TX
March 13: Pennsylvania 18th Congressional District special election
March 14: House Ways and Means Tax Policy Subcommittee hearing to evaluate recently expired tax provisions; Federal Innovation Summit in Washington, DC
March 18: Russian presidential election
March 20-21: Federal Open Market Committee meeting
March 20: Illinois primaries
March 22: Federal Communications Commission’s monthly open meeting
March 23: Government funding expires
March 26-April 6: House and Senate in recess