Public Policy Network

Helping You and Your Organization Engage in Policy Debates

FHLBank Pittsburgh's Public Policy Network (PPN) is a coalition of housing, economic development and financial industry advocates. Membership is free and includes invitations to events with members of Congress, monthly policy updates and quarterly conference calls featuring industry experts.

Public Policy Updates

Stay up-to-date on issues facing housing, economic development and the FHLBanks with Peter Knight's monthly policy updates.

June 2019

If you think that Washington has a trade association for just about everything, you are correct. Consider this: as Americans enjoy fireworks this July 4 in backyards, neighborhoods, beaches and cities across the country, rest easy in knowing that the American Pyrotechnics Association (APA) works hard for its members every day. The APA is currently opposing tariffs on imported fireworks, fighting to address burdensome regulation and doing just about everything else a good trade association does. This type of work on behalf of an industry lies at the heart of American democracy, which, on the Fourth, is celebrated with fireworks. Well done, APA!

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May 2019

You can identify a real English soccer fan (from either side of the pond) by the fact that they get as much pleasure in a defeat suffered by their most bitter rival as they do in the victory of their favorite team. This condition, known as schadenfreude, has manifestations beyond sports. Schadenfreude is broadly defined as the pleasure derived from the misfortune of others. On this topic, Wikipedia notes (if it is in Wikipedia, it must be true): "This emotion is displayed more in children than adults; however, adults also experience schadenfreude, but they are just better at concealing their expressions."

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April 2019

In Peanuts, the cartoon featuring Charlie Brown and his neighborhood friend, Lucy van Pelt, there were regular episodes of Lucy holding a football for Charlie Brown to kick. Though Lucy had - on every occasion - pulled the football from Charlie's path and squashed his best efforts to kick it, Charlie always held out hope that the next time would be different. Still, he continued to miss the withdrawn ball and end up flat on his back. He could not help it. Good old Charlie Brown.

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March 2019

Cherry blossoms, opening day and the looming Stanley Cup playoffs are providing Washington with pleasant, much-needed diversions from the grim partisanship that usually dominates the town. While these diversions (in the case of baseball and hockey) can end as soul-crushing disappointments, at least there is some fleeting optimism. That optimism is harder to find in our government, but there are a number of significant policy developments quietly moving forward on several fronts.

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February 2019

The first month of 2019 was dominated in Washington by the longest federal shutdown in history. A temporary funding bill reopened government for three weeks, and then, on Feb. 15, government was funded until the end of FY 2019, which occurs on Sept. 30. The shutdown resulted from a dispute over funding for a U.S.-Mexico border wall.

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January 2019

On Dec.22, the government was shut down over a disagreement between congressional Democrats and the President over funding for a wall along the US-Mexico border. At that point, there were 49 Democrats in the Senate, enough to deny the 60 votes to pass a government funding bill that had cleared the Republican-controlled House. Less than two weeks later, in a new Congress, Democrats had 47 votes in the Senate, still enough to deny the requisite 60 votes. On the House side, more than 100 new members were sworn in, most of them Democrats, giving that party control of the House.

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Peter E. Knight, Director, Government Relations
peter.knight@fhlb-pgh.com

Peter Knight, who joined FHLBank Pittsburgh in 2002, is responsible for directing the Government Relations Department.
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Allison Karakis, Government Relations Manager
Office: 412-288-7302
allison.karakis@fhlb-pgh.com

Allison Karakis, who joined FHLBank Pittsburgh in 2015, manages FHLBank Pittsburgh in-district government relations program, the Public Policy Network.
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