Given tomorrow is the first day of spring.. it’s totally March Madness!!! Wow… Was that a great weekend of basketball? Some great games and some great surprises. While I never would have picked them, I certainly know where UMBC is since it is about 10 minutes from my house. In fact, on St Patrick’s Day, our friend – whose daughter plays lax there – was mobbed when he showed up at the Killarney House with a UMBC jacket. I know my bracket is in trouble, but I hope you’re doing better. At least my Nevada prediction has held strong. Not as many surprises on in the Women’s NCAA bracket with #1 UConn rolling to a 140-53 victory just after UMBC knocked out UVa. NCAA Frozen four brackets are out with first round action starting Friday and final round action set for Minnesota on April 5th and 7th. Top seeds are Cornell, St. Cloud St, Ohio St and Notre Dame. And the Masters just two weeks away.
This is a crazy week as Congress runs up to the Easter spring break recess. Expect most of the key action to surround the budget that has to be approved by the end of the week, but the House will also fast-track legislation to streamline regulations for ceiling fan manufacturers. There is also a full slate of hearings in both the House and Senate.
Rick Perry is the biggest highlight tomorrow at Senate Energy looking on his 2019 Budget. His program office heads go to House Approps on Thursday on the applied science budget. NRC Commissioners head to the Hill tomorrow and Wednesday. NOAA also on Wednesday.
Trade controversies continue to heat up. Friday was the deadline for solar companies to request exemptions from solar tariffs. And on Wednesday and Thursday, Trade Rep Bob Lighthizer and Commerce Sect Ross will testify on steel and aluminum tariffs as well as his budget. Expect a rough ride from both sides of the aisle. And the Commerce Department will start accepting requests today from companies seeking to have imported steel and aluminum products excluded from the planned tariffs. As you know, my colleague Paul Nathanson and Josh Zive are all over this issue should you have questions. Keep your eyes open for more coalitions forming this week.
Also this week, after an impressive interview on 60 Minutes yesterday, Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman or MBS will be in Washington for a visit. Expect a full Slate of energy issues to come up including oil, natgas and nuclear. Finally in the offshore space, Interior released some new safety rules today on inspections and is expect to announce the results of the most recent lease sales on Wednesday.
Tomorrow is Ag Day so the National Press Club hosts USDA Secretary Sonny Perdue at 1:15 p.m. for remarks in the Holeman Lounge. Perdue also testifies on the USDA budget before House Approps’ Ag subpanel on Wednesday at 1:30 p.m. before the ethanol folks have a fly–in later in the week. Action still rages on White House meetings regarding the RFS (likely tomorrow). We are on it, so don’t hesitate to call if you have questions.
Off the Hill, the Science Coalition hosts a panel on advanced techs today with ClearPath’s Jeremy Harrell, ACCF hosts a conversation with Sen. Wyden tomorrow, Atlantic Council talksSolar Wednesday, AEI hosts a Thursday infrastructure forum with DOT Official Derek Kan and Friday Berkeley’s Haas Energy Institute hosts a forum on energy research.
Finally, Congrats to our friend Tom Henry, enviro reporter at the Toledo Blade and great SEJ member, who celebrated his 25th anniversary late last week at the paper, which is kind of amazing if you think about the market. Way to go Tom!!!
Call with questions. Best,