Congress heads into August Recess

The U.S. Senate passed a massive two-year budget deal yesterday to lift the debt ceiling for two years and raise spending $320 billion over current levels. The vote was 67-28, with a majority of Senate Republicans supporting the measure. The measure permits the government to resume borrowing to pay all its bills and sets an overall $1.37 trillion limit on agency budgets approved by Congress annually. It also removes the prospect of a government shutdown in October and automatic spending cuts.

Now Congressional members will head home to their districts for the 6-week August recess. However, work remains to be done. A vote on the U.S.-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA) is anticipated this fall, so members of the USMCA Coalition will be working with the U.S. Trade Representative and congressional leaders to address outstanding issues during the recess.

On Monday, the U.S. Senate Environment and Public Works Committee released America’s Transportation Infrastructure Act of 2019, the largest amount of funding provided for highway reauthorization legislation in history. The bill authorizes $287 billion from the Highway Trust Fund over five years in investments to maintain and repair America’s roads and bridges and to keep our economy moving, a 25% increase over current funding levels. The legislation includes provisions to improve road safety, accelerate project delivery, improve resiliency to disasters, reduce highway emissions, and grow the economy.  Click here for more information about the America’s Transportation Infrastructure Act of 2019.

Finally, news broke yesterday that Congressman Will Hurd will not be seeking a fourth term representing District 23, a district that stretches from San Antonio to the outskirts of El Paso and includes more than 800 miles of the U.S.-Mexico border. Hurd said he will not seek re-election because he “will pursue opportunities outside the halls of Congress to solve problems at the nexus between technology and national security.”

Your Chamber will be hosting some of the Bexar County Congressional members for roundtable discussions over the August recess. Count on us to keep you updated on the federal issue most important to our business members. For more information, contact Stephanie Reyes, VP of Public Policy at

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