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This week in Washington: June 20-24

Congress has full week ahead before July 4 recess.

Time is ticking for the Senate to reach a compromise on its GMO labeling bill as indicated by a please from the Coalition for Safe, Affordable Food. The House is scheduled to be in session for only four days this week before taking a weeklong recess leading up to the July 4 holiday. That makes June 24 the last day to get legislation to President Barack Obama's desk to beat Vermont.

A handful of hearings are also slated that may be of interest to agricultural watchers.

House Ag Committee on nutrition education programs - Wednesday at 10:00 a.m. ET, the House Committee on Agriculture will hold a hearing on "Past, Present, and Future of SNAP: Evaluating Effectiveness and Outcomes in Nutrition Education." This hearing will follow the series of previous hearings that focus on the different aspects and historical significance of USDA's nutrition programs. To watch the hearing live via webcast or archived afterwards, click here.

Sound science at EPA hearing: The Committee on Science, Space and Technology has scheduled a hearing on Wednesday at 10 a.m. to ensure sound science is used at EPA. EPA administrator Gina McCarthy is slated to testify. For more information, click here.

Senate Indian Affairs hearing on rural development – The Senate Indiana Affairs Committee has an oversight hearing scheduled for Wednesday at 2:15 p.m. to examine accessing Department of Agriculture rural development programs in native communities. For more information, click here.

Managing the wild horse & burro program: The Committee on Natural resources has scheduled a hearing Wednesday at 2:30 p.m. on the challenges and potential solutions for the Bureau of Land Management’s Wild Horse & Burro Program. For more information, click here. House Ag subcommittee hearing on "Big Data"- Thursday at 10:00 .m. ET the House Agriculture Committee's Subcommittee on General Farm Commodities and Risk Management will hold a public hearing titled "Big Data and Agriculture: Innovation in the Air". The hearing will focus on the use of unmanned aerial systems (or "drones") as a tool for collecting data to be used by producers, managers and policy makers. To watch the hearing live via webcast or archived afterwards, click here

This week secretary of agriculture Tom Vilsack will deliver the keynote address at the Select USA Investment Summit on Monday. On Thursday he will travel to Denver, Colo., tor a National Drought Resilience Partnership event with the Department of Interior to announce a Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) partnership expansion and highlight work being done in the Colorado River Basin.

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