Author

Ariana Figueroa

Ariana Figueroa

Ariana Figueroa is a reporter in the States Newsroom Washington, D.C, bureau. Her areas of coverage include politics and policy, lobbying, elections and campaign finance. Before joining States Newsroom, Ariana covered public health and chemical policy on Capitol Hill for E&E News. As a Florida native, she's worked for the Miami Herald and her hometown paper, the Tampa Bay Times. Her work has also appeared in the Chicago Tribune and NPR. She is a graduate of the University of Florida.

Wildfire smoke above a mostly empty highway out West

Agriculture section of reconciliation bill centers on fighting climate change, enhancing research

By: - September 13, 2021

WASHINGTON – The U.S. House Agriculture Committee on Monday finished marking up its section of the $3.5 trillion reconciliation package. The agriculture portion would provide funding for historically Black land grant colleges and investments in urban agriculture, along with boosting U.S. Department of Agriculture programs to address climate change threats in farming.  The $66 billion […]

President Joe Biden walks down a hallway

Biden to travel to New York, Pennsylvania, and Virginia for 9/11 observances

By: - September 10, 2021

WASHINGTON – To honor the nearly 3,000 Americans who died 20 years ago on 9/11, President Joe Biden will visit the sites of the terrorist attacks. Biden on Saturday will observe the anniversary in New York City, where hijackers crashed two passenger jets into the World Trade Center, killing ​​2,753 people.  He’ll also visit Shanksville, […]

People walking as the sun sets

House reconciliation package would provide path to citizenship

By: - September 6, 2021

A provision tucked in the $3.5 trillion reconciliation package would direct Congress to chart a path for citizenship for millions of undocumented people. If passed, the House provision would provide a pathway to citizenship for those in the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program, often referred to as Dreamers; farmworker workers; those who hold a […]

Chuck Schumer walks in the Capitol rotunda flanked by two men.

U.S. Senate to try again on voting rights in September

By: - August 11, 2021

WASHINGTON – U.S. Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer is planning to bring a comprehensive voting rights package to the Senate floor for a vote when the chamber returns from recess next month. Schumer, a New York Democrat, said Wednesday that the Senate will take up a compromise version of the voting and elections bill, S. […]

A crowd of graduating students

Biden extends freeze on student loan payments to Jan. 31

By: - August 6, 2021

WASHINGTON – The Biden administration announced Friday afternoon that it is extending the pause on federal student loan repayments until January of next year, as the Delta variant of the coronavirus surges across the country.   “As our nation’s economy continues to recover from a deep hole, this final extension will give students and borrowers the […]

John Lewis

House Dems document U.S. history of discrimination in shaping John Lewis voting rights bill

By: - August 6, 2021

WASHINGTON – A House panel released a new report on Friday that will help lawmakers craft legislation named after the late Georgia civil rights icon Rep. John Lewis that aims to protect voting rights across the United States. The 124-page report, put forth by the House subcommittee on elections, outlines the U.S. history of discrimination […]

The corner of a crumpled up dollar bill

Black women with children excluded from federal cash assistance program, report finds

By: - August 4, 2021

WASHINGTON — A new research paper reviewed how each state implemented a federal program that has provided cash assistance to low-income families over the last 25 years – and found that Black women with children repeatedly were excluded. On a call with reporters Wednesday, policy experts at the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities outlined […]

From left, U.S. Reps. Mondaire Jones and Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez of New York, Cori Bush of Missouri, and Jimmy Gomez of California sit on the steps of the Capitol

Feds order new eviction ban in counties with highest COVID-19 infection rates

By: and - August 4, 2021

WASHINGTON — Federal health officials on Tuesday announced a new, narrower moratorium on evictions through Oct. 3, which would protect struggling renters in areas of the U.S. that have been hit hardest by soaring COVID-19 infection rates. The targeted eviction ban comes days after a federal moratorium in place since September expired on Saturday. The […]

Steny Hoyer walks down a hallway in the Capitol

U.S. House passes PFAS bill regulating ‘forever chemicals’ in drinking water

By: - July 22, 2021

WASHINGTON – The U.S. House Wednesday passed bipartisan legislation that would regulate toxic chemicals found in drinking water, as well as designate two types of those toxic chemicals as hazardous substances that would spark federal cleanup standards.  The bill, H.R. 2467, also known as the PFAS Action Act of 2021, passed 241-183, with 23 Republicans […]

A girl gets a drink of water

U.S. House to vote next week on expanding PFAS regulation, backers say

By: - July 15, 2021

WASHINGTON – Members of Congress and Biden administration officials at a conference on Wednesday outlined how they’re attempting to regulate toxic chemicals found in drinking water – including an upcoming vote in the U.S. House. EPA Administrator Michael Regan, a former top environmental official in North Carolina, said the agency is in the process of […]

Rev. Dr. William Barber, co-chair of the Poor People’s Campaign, speaks during a news conference outside the U.S. Capitol on May 20.

Anti-poverty advocates urge Congress to act on voting rights, minimum wage, filibuster

By: - July 13, 2021

WASHINGTON – The Poor People’s Campaign announced on Monday the beginning of a weeks-long push calling on Congress to end the Senate filibuster and pass voting rights legislation. The anti-poverty campaign, “A Season of Nonviolent Moral Direct Action,” will run each Monday until Aug. 2. Advocates are urging Congress to enact the sweeping For the […]

White House says executive order coming on labeling beef as a ‘Product of USA’

By: - July 6, 2021

WASHINGTON – The White House will unveil an executive order in the coming days that directs the U.S. Department of Agriculture to clarify that meat can receive a “Product of USA” label only if that livestock is raised in the United States rather than abroad, press secretary Jen Psaki told reporters Tuesday afternoon.  “The EO […]