Tax & Financial Services Week Ahead, March 21 | Brownstein Hyatt Farber Schreck – JDSupra – JD Supra

What to Watch

The military conflict between Russia and Ukraine remains front of mind for Congress. Shortly after hearing from Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy last week, the House passed with broad bipartisan support a bill that would rescind favored trade relations with Russia and Belarus. Despite passing the House by a comfortable margin, Senate Republicans are preparing to slow its progress by adding a ban on Russian oil imports. It is a priority for Senate Finance Committee Ranking Member Mike Crapo (R-ID). Discussions around that package are expected to progress this week.
The main activity, however, will concern the U.S. competitiveness package, which will be considered on the Senate floor. Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) filed cloture last week on the House-passed America COMPETES Act—a procedural step that will ultimately allow the Senate to pass an amended version of the House competitiveness package. The Senate will substitute the House-passed bill with language from its Senate counterpart, the U.S. Innovation and Competition Act. After the amended America COMPETES Act passes the Senate, which is expected this week, the House will then vote on the measure. When it fails in the House, which could occur next week, the two chambers will be in formal disagreement on the same package, allowing a formal conference process to commence. Once conferees are named, the House and Senate will begin negotiations to reach a compromise agreement—a potentially months-long process. This will be a main legislative focus for the next few months ahead of the midterm elections.
While the lower chamber is out this week, House Republicans will hold their retreat in Ponte Vedra Beach, Florida. The primary focus will reportedly be the various task forces established by House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) in 2021. The task forces are focused on jobs and the economy, big tech censorship, data, energy and climate and China accountability, among others. The discussion could lay the groundwork for the Republican legislative agenda, should the party retake control of the House next Congress.
On the Floor
The House has a district work period.
The Senate will resume consideration of the America COMPETES Act (H.R.4521).

In Committee
Senate Banking Committee
On Tuesday, the full committee will hold a hearing entitled “Building a Resilient Economy: Shoring Up Supply,” during which the following witnesses will testify:

  • William Spriggs (professor of economics, Howard University and chief economist, AFL-CIO)
  • Betsey Stevenson (professor of public policy and economics, University of Michigan)
  • Erica Fuchs (professor of engineering and public policy, Carnegie Mellon University)
  • Veronique de Rugy (George Gibbs chair in political economy at the Mercatus Center, George Mason University)
  • Phil Levy (chief economist, Flexport)

The disruption of global supply chains has caused shipment delays and higher prices across the U.S. A significant contributor has been the COVID-19 pandemic, but now the military conflict between Russia and Ukraine could create further disruptions. Lawmakers are expected to ask the witnesses how Congress and the Biden administration can improve supply chains amid these challenges.
On Thursday, the full committee will hold a hearing entitled “Strengthening Oversight and Equity in the Appraisal Process,” during which the following witnesses will testify:

  • Melody Taylor (executive director of Property Appraisal and Valuation Equity Interagency Task Force and regional director, Office of Fair Housing and Equal Opportunity, Region III, Department of Housing and Urban Development)
  • James Park (executive director, Appraisal Subcommittee of the Federal Financial Institutions Examination Council)

Because the home appraisal process is inherently subjective, lawmakers are expected to explore the extent of bias and discrimination, particularly as it relates to appraisals for racial minorities.
Other Committees
The Senate Finance Committee, the House Ways and Means Committee and the House Financial Services Committee do not have any events scheduled this week.

Tax and Finance Rewind

In case you missed it…

  • IRS Commissioner Charles Rettig testified before the House Ways and Means Committee to discuss the 2022 filing season. Contact a member of the Brownstein team for the readout.
  • House Foreign Affairs Ranking Member Michael McCaul (R-TX) and a bipartisan group of House lawmakers introduced the Facilitating American-Build Semiconductors (FABS) Act earlier this week. The FABS Act would establish a 25% investment tax credit for semiconductor companies to invest in manufacturing and research and design capabilities the U.S.
  • The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) announced on Wednesday it will seek to hire more than 200 new technologists to help the agency modernize its technology. The effort is part of the agency’s larger goal of hiring an additional 10,000 employees to address the processing backlog, improve taxpayer assistance and modernize IRS IT. The IRS will be aided by the direct hiring authority it received under the recent Continuing Appropriations Act, 2022 which President Biden signed into law last week.

Upcoming Activity

Below is a complete list of all tax and financial services events in Congress, the administration and private sector for the upcoming week. 
Wednesday, March 23

Internal Revenue Service
Electronic Tax Administration Advisory Committee Meeting

Private Sector
Tuesday, March 22

Hamilton Project
Tracking the Recovery from the COVID-19 Recession
Foreign Policy
Global Economic Outlook, How the War in Ukraine is Fueling Inflation and the World’s Post-Pandemic Recovery

Wednesday, March 23

Peterson Institute for International Economics
How Russia’s War in Ukraine Affects the Financial Sector

Thursday, March 24

Brookings Institution
Brookings Papers on Economic Activity: The Most Urgent Economic Challenges of the Day

Regulating the Digital Gold Rus


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