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tv   U.S. House Legislative Business  CSPAN  January 31, 2017 1:59pm-4:00pm EST

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the former administration. the c.r.a. was designed for this exact purpose and we now have a unique opportunity to pass this legislation through both chambers and see it signed into law. mr. speaker, this is a good, straightforward rule, allowing for consideration of an important resolution that will ensure mining communities and hard working families are not crushed by another crippling federal regulation. i believe this rule and the underlying legislation are strong measures that are important to our country's future. i urge my colleagues to support house resolution 70 and the underlying bill. mr. speaker, i yield back the balance of my time and move the previous question on the resolution. the speaker pro tempore: the question is on ordering the previous question on the resolution. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no.
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in the opinion of the chair, the ayes have it. mr. hastings: i ask for the yeas and nays. the speaker pro tempore: the yeas and nays are requested. those favoring a vote by the yeas and nays will rise. a sufficient number having risen, the yeas and nays are ordered. pursuant to clause 8 of rule 20, further proceedings on this question will be postponed.
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the speaker pro tempore: pursuant to clause 8 of rule 20, the chair will post opponent further proceedings today on motions to suspend the rules on which a recorded vote or the yeas and nays are ordered or on which the vote insecures objection under clause 6 of rule 20. record votes on postponed questions will be taken later. for what purpose does the gentleman from new jersey seek recognition? >> mr. speaker, i move to suspend the rules and pass h.r. 276, as amended. the speaker pro tempore: the clerk will report the title of the bill. the clerk: h.r. 276, a bill to amend title 49 united states code to ensure reliable air service in american samoa. the speaker pro tempore: pursuant to the rule, the gentleman from new jersey, mr. lobiondo, and the gentleman from
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washington, mr. larsen, each will control 20 minutes. the chair recognizes the gentleman from new jersey mr. lobiondo: thank you, mr. speaker. i i yield myself such time as i may consume. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. lobiondo: mr. speaker, i ask unanimous consent that all members may have five legislative days to revise and and include remarks extraneous material on h.r. 276. the speaker pro tempore: without objection. mr. lobiondo: thank you, mr. speaker. mr. speaker, i rise today in support of h.r. 276 as amended. this bill will improve transportation in america samoa by making air service between its islands more reliable and predictable. specifically the bill streamlines a burdensome federal regulatory process that artificially inhibits economic growth and jobs on the islands. the senate unanimously passed similar legislation in the last congress and i am hopeful they will join with us this year in addressing this issue. i want to thank the sponsor of the bill, the gentlewoman from
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american samoa, mrs. raddy wagen, for her tireless efforts on behalf of her constituents and for working with us to bring a bill that benefits so many of them to the floor. with that i urge my colleague to support h.r. 276 and i reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman reserves the balance of his time. the gentleman from washington is recognized. mr. larsen: thank you, mr. speaker. i yield myself such time as i may consume. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized for such time. mr. larsen: mr. speaker, i rise in support of h.r. 276, as amended, introduced by the gentlewoman from american samoa. for reliable air service into american samoa. american samoa is situated in the center of the south pacific, about 2,500 miles south of hawaii. this nearest neighboring islands are at least 500 miles away and the territory is more than 7,000 miles from where we stand today. this remote location already makes export and travel difficult and costly. complicating matters, more is the fact that the current laws
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prohibit foreign air carriers from carrying passengers between the islands except in certain emergency situations. the department of transportation has authority to issue waivers in such emergency cases, but the waivers are good for only 30 days. a foreign airline that is otherwise fit to provide service between the islands is therefore forced to apply monthly for waiver. h.r. 276 would remove this burden by permitting the d.o.t. to have the waiver for six months. this ensures the domestic air transportation is vowvided and sustained between the islands' benefiting both the people and economy. i urge my colleagues to join me in supporting 24 -- in supporting this bill and i reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman reserves the balance of his time. the gentleman from new jersey nng is recognized. mr. lobiondo: mr. speaker, i wish to yield such time as she may consume to the gentlewoman from american samoa, miss rad radewagen. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlelady from american samoa is recognized for such time she may son sume.
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miss r tafment dewagen: i would like to thank the ranking members defazio and lrsen and their staff for the effort and work they put in to quickly see this measure through this committee. they do and exlent job and it's always encouraging to work with such bright people. i also want to thank leader mccarthy and his staff for their assistance in getting this measure to the floor and look forward to working under their leadership to bring prosperity to the american people, including those in the territories. mr. speaker, the people of american samoa desperately need improvements to their access to reliable transportation between anua.lands of tutul a&m the islands are losing residents at an alarming pace, mostly due to the lack of reliable transportation and it's causing a great hardship on the families and businesses who reside in these islands which lie 60 miles
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from the main island. also, the lack of reliable transportation poses a severe health risk to those who need emergency medical care as the only hospital in american samoa is in tutuila. my bill, h.r. 276, will help alleviate this issue by easing some of the burdensome red tape caution the issue, and i look forward to seeing it signed into law by the president. thank you. i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlelady yields back. the gentleman from washington is recognized. mr. larsen: thank you, mr. speaker. i yield as much time as he may consume to the gentleman from northern marianas. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from northern marianas is recognized for such time as he may consume. mr. sablan: thank you very much. mr. speaker, i rise today in support of h.r. 276. a bill to provide more reliable air service to the people of
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american samoa for air travel within american samoa. the northern marianas is similar to american samoa in many ways. although the large majority of our population reresides on saipan, i have several thousand constituents residing on other islands. we're fortunate that air travel between these islands is possible with the presence of commercial air travel. unfortunately, in american samoa there are no u.s. carriers perating a route between tutilai so polynesian airlines is the only one operating that route. this bill introduced by my good friend rein colleague from american samoa present a commonsense approach to cut red tape and allow our regular flights to continue between these elands. it would help the people of american -- island t would help the people of american samoa to conduct business and access
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health care. it has my full support and i ask the house to pass this commonsense legislation. thank you. i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back. the gentleman from new jersey is recognized. mr. lobiondo: i reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from new jersey reserves the balance of his time. the gentleman from washington is recognized. mr. larsen: thank you, mr. speaker. i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from washington has yielded back the balance of his time. the gentleman from new jersey is recognized to close debate on this bill. mr. lobiondo: thank you, mr. speaker. i'd like to thank mr. larsen and the staff for their help on this. i urge all members to support h.r. 276 as amended, and i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. all time having expired on this bill. the question is will the house suspend the rules and pass the bill h.r. 276, as amended. so many as are in favor say aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair, 2/3 of those voting having responded in the affirmative, the rules are suspended, the bill is passed, and without objection
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the motion to reconsider sthravenlt -- is laid upon the table. does the gentleman from new jersey offer an amendment to the title of the bill? mr. lobiondo: i ask unanimous consent to amend the title of the bill. the speaker pro tempore: the clerk will report the amendment. the clerk: long title by striking a bill. the speaker pro tempore: without objection. the amendment is agreed . o -- for what purpose does the for what purpose does the
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gentleman from pennsylvania seek recognition? >> mr. speaker, i move to suspend the rules and pass h.r. 358, as amended. the speaker pro tempore: the clerk will report thele of the bill. the clerk: h.r. 358, a bill to require the secretary of homeland security to submit a study on the circumstances which may impact the effectiveness and availability of first responders before, during, and after a terrorist threat or event, and for other purposes. the speaker pro tempore: pursuant to the rule, the gentleman from pennsylvania, mr. barletta, and the gentleman from georgia, mr. johnson, each will control 20 minutes. the chair now recognizes the gentleman from pennsylvania. mr. barletta: thank you. mr. speaker, i ask unanimous consent that all members may have five legislative days to evise and extend their remarks and include extraneous material on h.r. 58, as amended. the speaker pro tempore: without objection, so ordered. mr. barletta: thank you, mr. speaker. i yield myself such time as i may consume. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized for such time. mr. barletta: thank you, mr.
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speaker. first i'd like to welcome mr. johnson from georgia to the committee. i look forward to working together to do good work for the american people. mr. speaker, firefighters, police, e.m.s., and other first responders are critical to our nation's emergency management system. first responders leave their own families, even during disasters, to protect you and me. as recently as this past august, we saw devastating flooding in baton rouge and in southeast louisiana. the flooding touched every home. including the homes of firefighters, police, and other first responders. they focused on rescuing flood victims while they knew their own homes were flooded and their own families were homeless this. legislation would require a report on the state and local programs and policies in place to prepare and protect first responders and their families in
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times of disaster. taking care of first responders and their families gives our firefighters, police, and other critical emergency personnel the peace of mind to focus on the task at hand rather than worrying whether their family is safe and taken care of. i urge my colleagues to support this bill. i reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from pennsylvania reserves the balance of his time. the gentleman from georgia is recognized. mr. johnson: thank you, mr. speaker. i rise in support of h.r. 58, the first responder identification of emergency needs and disaster situations, or the friends act. this bill requires the government accountability office, or g.a.o., to submit a report on how state and local programs affect the preparedness and protection of first responders. congress and the american people need to know whether these
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programs consider circumstances that may affect a first responder's ability to respond to an event. in particular, the bill requires g.a.o. to exam the degree to which state and local programs and policies consider the presence of a first responder's family in an area impacted by a terrorist attack. the availability of personal protective equipment for first responders, he and the availability of home kits for first responders and their families for biological incident response. while we're asking g.a.o. to examine state and local programs and polcy, some of these programs and policies may be funded with federal dollars. to that extent congress needs to know whether these federally funded programs and policies are as effective as possible to prepare and protect first responders. this month the state of georgia received two presidential
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disaster declarations from devastating tornadoes in districts neighboring my own. while these are not terrorist attacks, these tornadoes highlight the fact that first responders are often called upon to respond to events in their own communities where they and their loved ones live. our heroes immediately respond to the call of duty even though they themselves or their loved ones may be impacted. thus, it is important that state and local preparedness programs are designed to develop to consider all situations that may impact first responder preparedness. we must do everything we can to support our first responders who are often called upon to put their lives on the line to help others even when their own families need them. so i thank my colleague, the gentlewoman from texas, ms. jackson lee, for introducing this bill and for her diligent work on this issue.
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and in response to my chairman's welcome, i would have to respond by saying i'm just giddy about being a part of this subcommittee and i look forward to working with you and your staff to make things good for america and for our future. and with that i urge my colleagues to join my support in this bill, and i reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from georgia reserves the balance of his time. the gentleman from pennsylvania is recognized. . mr. barletta: mr. speaker, i reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from pennsylvania reserves. the gentleman from georgia is recognized to close debate for the minority. mr. johnson: thank you, mr. speaker. i would at this time call forward the gentlelady from texas, sheila jackson lee, also the sponsor of this legislation, and would yield to her for a period of five
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minutes. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlelady from texas is recognized for five minutes. ms. jackson lee: let me thank the gentleman from georgia and likewise congratulate him for his leadership on the transportation committee along with his chairman. i rise as a senior member of the homeland security committee who -- which the committee has had special emphasis on protecting and responding to our first responders. and so i'm excited about the fact of moving this bill forward and i thank the transportation committee and i thank my homeland security committee for moving this forward through an amendment process and now ultimately on the floor of the house. so i rise, mr. speaker, enthusiastically in support of h.r. 58, the first responder identification of emergency needs in disaster situations, or friends act, and yield myself the time allotted. i thank my chairman, mr. mccaul, and ranking member thompson, for the valuable assistance in bringing this important bill before the house for consideration during the
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114th congress. we are now in the 115th congress. i appreciate chairman shuster and ranking member peter defazio for allowing the friends act now to come forward which was referred to the committee on transportation and infrastructure be considered under today's suspensions. the fredgeds act reflects what we are all about. how many of us stop by fire , pat a police officer on the back and recognize that 911 number is a very special number to many of our constituents but more importantly when natural disasters or man-made disasters such as the heinous act of 9/11, who is among the first to come? it is the first responders and they go to farahway places. the friends act reflects stakeholder impact and collaboration with the majority. i thank the international association of fire chiefs and national association of state e.m.s. officials working with
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me and the national emergency management society for their input in the friends act. our two committees, transportation and homeland security, really respond in a bipartisan way. the homeland security committee will be facing many mounting of concerns dealing with intelligence issues, dealing with the issues with russia, dealing with the issues of executive orders but we do know we come together to honor our first responders that are our nation's heroes. they run into burning buildings, they rescue people trapped by dangerous floods and put themselves in harm's way to protect others. just last week in san bernardino we saw the brave first responders who pursued two individuals that fled from the scene of a deadly attack recently over the last year. to do their jobs, first responders must leave their homes and families while the rest of us cling to ours. whether it was to deal with the aftermath of a terrorist attack, as i indicated, or to the fires, hurricanes, tornadoes that we have seen
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across america, devastation of so many of our constituents, loss of life, first responders leave their homes to ensure that others are safe. unfortunately, today, first responders are asked to answer the call to action without knowing whether their families will be safe as they work to rescue others. our first responders deserve better. e friends act requires the government accountability office to -- by assessing among other things measures taken to ensure first responder families are safe, first of all, and the availability of personal protective equipment exists. so they can come home to their families. it was particularly noticed during 9/11, for those who were able to go to ground zero as they were still continuing the recovery, many of you know they continued to recover for months
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and months and months and you saw the kind of exposure those first responders had. during committee consideration of the friends act, my friend from new york, mr. higgins, offered an amendment to authorize g.a.o. to evaluate the availability of home med kits for first responders and their families. i was pleased to support the higgins amendment and it adds to this bill. h.r. 58 also directs g.a.o. to distinguish policies available in high-risk urban areas which may be better resourced and rural areas where efforts to ensure preparedness for first responders and their families may require creative leveraging of resources. this provision will ensure that the information included in the report will be applicable and adaptable by various communities across the country as they work to better protect their protectors. let us remember both the rural community as well as the urban community. additionally, the friends act directs the secretary of homeland security directed to review its findings and assess
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whether the policies identified could be applicable to federal first responders. the friends act has been endorsed by the international association of chiefs and a number of other organizations. before i conclude, let me again thank all of my colleagues, and let me ask unanimous consent to introduce into the record a letter from the international association of chiefs and as well the national association of state e.m.s. officials. the speaker pro tempore: without objection, so ordered. ms. jackson lee: thank you. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlelady's time has expired. ms. jackson lee: it's important to note -- mr. johnson: i yield to the gentlelady for an additional two minutes. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlelady is recognized for an additional two minutes. ms. jackson lee: it's important to note the important role of the international association of fire chiefs play in the lives of first responders and their advocacy for their fellow brothers and sisters and they call them their fellow brothers and sisters. i want to briefly read their words. dear representative jackson lee, on behalf of the approximately 12,000 fire and
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emergency ssh leaders of the international association of fire chiefs, i'd like to thank you for introducing h.r. 58, the first responder identification of emergency needs in disaster situations, friends act. we support this legislation because it will examine an important issue facing the nation's first responders during a major terrorist attack, adequate preparedness for the first responder families. things and o list recounts that their concern is what is happening to their family under these circumstances. in a letter from the national association of state e.m.s. officials of which i ask unanimous consent to submit into the record -- the speaker pro tempore: without objection, so ordered. ms. jackson lee: we are writing to express our support for the jackson lee amendment which was the bill the first responder identification of emergency , eds in disaster situations
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this bill would make an important report on the state of family support planning for the families of first responders. ladies and gentlemen, i am grateful of my colleagues and to my colleagues for nair assistance as we move the friends -- their assistance as we move the friends act forward but i'm more grateful of the first responders who unselfishly put themselves forward and in danger to help our constituents and to their families we owe them they are safe during the time of their loved ones being on the front lines of others. with that i ask my colleagues to support the friends act, h.r. 58, and i yield back my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlelady yields back. the gentleman from pennsylvania is recognized. mr. barletta: mr. speaker, i continue to reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from pennsylvania reserves. the gentleman from georgia is recognized. mr. johnson: mr. speaker, i yield the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from georgia yields the balance of his time. the gentleman from pennsylvania is recognized to close debate on this bill. barr br mr. speaker, i ask --
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mr. barletta: mr. speaker, i ask my colleagues support and i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: all time having expired on the bill, the question is will the house suspend the rules and pass the bill h.r. 58, as amended. those in favor will say aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair, 2/3 having responded in the affirmative, the rules are suspended, the bill is passed, and without objection the motion to reconsider is laid on the table. the speaker pro tempore: for what purpose does the gentleman from new york seek recognition?
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>> mr. speaker, i move the house suspend the rules and pass h.r. 666. the speaker pro tempore: the clerk will report the title of the bill. the clerk: h.r. 666, a bill to amend the homeland security act of 2002 to establish the insider threat program, and for other purposes. the speaker pro tempore: pursuant to the rule, the gentleman from new york, mr. king, and the gentleman from mississippi, mr. thompson, each will control 20 minutes. the chair now recognizes the gentleman from new york. mr. king: thank you, mr. speaker. i ask unanimous consent that all members may have five legislative days to revise and tend their remarks and include any extraneous material on the bill under consideration. the speaker pro tempore: without objection, so ordered. mr. king: mr. speaker, i yield myself such time as i may consume. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized for such time. mr. king: mr. speaker, i rise in strong support of the legislation. recent high profile cases of government employees leaking classified information have caused drastic damage to u.s. national security and diplomacy. the name snowden and manning are now synonymous with the
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term insider threat. unfortunately, snowden, manning and others were allowed to conduct their traitorous work undetected because the government granted them access to facilities and information systems. in response to these cases, it is vital that congress ensure federal agencies have the tools to detect and disrupt future insider threat situations before damage is done. h.r. 666, in contrast to its unholy numbering, has the important and respectable goal of authorizing have detection and mitigation efforts at the department of homeland security. d.h.s. has over 115,000 employees with access to classified information and many more with access to law enforcement sensitive data. unauthorized disclosures of classified information whether deliberate or unwitting represent a significant threat to national security. the very nature of modern communication systems as well as d.h.s.'s important information sharing role with state and local partners adds complexity to the challenge and
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requires thoughtful programs to educate employees and enhance d.h.s.-wide detection capabilities. the bill directs d.h.s. to develop a strategy for the department to identify, prevent, mitigate and respond to insider threats and requires d.h.s. to ensure that personnel understand what workplace behavior may be indicative of a potential insider threat and how their activity on d.h.s. networks will be monitored. the bill codifies a comprehensive insider threat program at d.h.s. that can be implemented through the department and its component agencies. and most importantly reinforces the importance of preventing future insider attacks. i want to thank homeland security chairman mccaul, ranking member thompson and congressman dan donovan and lou barletta for working with me to move this bill to the floor. this bill passed november, by oice vote. i am pleased the house is
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moving it through the process. i look forward to working with the senate to move this measure forward. i urge my colleagues to support this bill so we can establish a comprehensive, transparent d.h.s.-wide insider threat program. i urge support for the bill, and i reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from new york reserves the balance of the time. the gentleman from mississippi is recognized. mr. thompson: mr. speaker, i se in support of h.r. 666, the department of homeland security insider threat and mitigation act of 2017, and i yield myself such time as i may consume. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized for such time. mr. thompson: thank you, mr. speaker. mr. speaker, h.r. 666, the department of homeland security insider threat and mitigation act of 2017, authorizes the department of homeland security to address the homeland and national security risks posed by trusted insiders. typically, trusted insiders are
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given unrestricted access to mission-critical assets such as personnel, facilities and computer networks. while d.h.s., like other federal agencies, conduct extensive vetting and prospective employees, there's a risk that someone with insider status exploits their position to damage the united states through espionage, terrorism or the unauthorized disclosure of sensitive national security information. as the ranking member of the committee on homeland security, i am supportive of the department of homeland security's current insider threat program. it is targeted at preventing and detecting when a vetted federal employee or contractor with access to u.s. government resources, including personnel, facilities, information, equipment, networks and systems ploits such access for
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nefarious, terroristic or criminal purposes. though i support the d.h.s. program, i do have some concerns about d.h.s. and other federal agencies deploying continuous evaluation programs without transparency and congressional oversight. . i'm kerp federal agencies with an understandable urge to protect their i.t. systems and facilities are racing to aguirre the capability before knowing whether such costly systems are even effective. therefore i'd like to reiterate to this congress as i did last congress that prior to establishing any such program on which certain d.h.s. employees would be subjected to ongoing automated credit, criminal, and social media monitoring the department engaging congress about not only the potential cost and benefits of such program, but what protections would be in place for workers
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subject to such a program. with that, mr. speaker, i urge the passage of 666 and i reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from mississippi reserves the balance of his time. the gentleman from new york is recognized. mr. king: i reserve the balance of my time. i have no further speakers. the ranking member prepared to close. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from new york reserves the balance of his time. the gentleman from mississippi, if he has no other speakers, is recognized to close debate on this bill for the minority. mr. thompson: thank you very much, mr. speaker. i don't have any further speakers. i am prepared to close at this time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. thompson: thank you. mr. speaker, we live in a time when the threats to our nation are complex. when this bill was considered last congress, the prospect for a foreign intelligence agency would carry out an espionage campaign to influence the outcome of our presidential election was material for the
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motives -- movies of a good spy thriller. today in light of russian government actions in the 2016 elections, we have a greater appreciation of the importance of counterintelligence efforts. as such, this bill is particularly timely. none of us want to see someone exploit their access to d.h.s. network to carry out cybercrimes or other criminal activities. even as d.h.s. works to detect and prevent such threats, it is important that such activities be carried out in a transparent way so as not to compound the chronic morale challenges that exist within the work force. each time d.h.s. considers making an adjustment to its insider threat program, thoughtful consideration must be paid to whether the operational drawbacks and costs of such an adjustment outweigh the benefits of such change. that said, i commend general
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taylor, the previous undersecretary for intelligence and analysis at d.h.s., for the attention he gave to the insider threat challenge. i look forward to continuing to work with the department's success soar to boast security within the department. d also like to give mr. king particular credit for his interest in this effort. to make sure that problems don't come from the inside if we can help it. with that, mr. speaker, i urge passage of h.r. 666 and yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from mississippi yielded back the balance of his time of the the gentleman from new york is recognized to close debate on this bill. mr. ng: thank you, speaker. let me thank the ranking member for his support and kind words. let me fully agree with him on the outstanding job that general taylor did during his time at d.h.s. and throughout his career in public service.
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mr. speaker, on a daily basis adversaries are targeting d.h.s. and other federal agencies seeking to aguirre sensitive information. u.s. citizens would -- to acquire sensitive information. this bill provides the framework for d.h.s. to implement an insider threat program that identifies and disrupts malicious insiders who seek to do the department and its employees harm. it also seeks to protect the department's work force by conducting a transparent process to reinforce sishe hygiene, data security, and awareness of malicious activity to a robust training program. i urge my colleagues to vote for this bill and i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from new york yielded back. all time having exsired, the question is, will the house suspend the rules and pass the bill h.r. 666. so many as are in favor say aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair, 2/3 of those voting having responded in the affirmative, the rules
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are suspended, the bill is passed, and without objection the motion to reconsider is laid pon the table. for what purpose does the gentleman from new york seek recognition? mr. king: mr. speaker, morph that the house suspend the rules and pass h.r. 697. the speaker pro tempore: the clerk will report the title of the bill. the clerk: h.r. 697, a bill to amend the homeland security act of 2002 to improve the management and administration of the security clearance processes throughout the department of homeland security, and for other purposes. the speaker pro tempore: pursuant to the rule, the gentleman from new york, mr. king, and the gentleman from mississippi, mr. thompson, each will control 20 minutes. the chair now recognizes the gentleman from new york. mr. king: mr. speaker, i ask unanimous consent that all members may have five legislative days to revise and and include remarks any extraneous material on the bill under consideration. the speaker pro tempore: without objection, so ordered. mr. king: mr. speaker, i yield myself such time as i may consume. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized for such
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time. mr. king: i rise in support of h.r. 697, the department of homeland security clearance management and administration act, and i commend the gentleman from mississippi who is sponsoring t a security clearance is a privilege. granted to individuals who have pledged to protect the american people from threats domestically and abroad. d.h.s. has approximately 115,000 employees with varying access to classified materials. one important element from h.r. 697 is the requirement for the secretary of homeland security to conduct an inventory of the department's positions that require security clearances and assess what positions may be duplicative or are no longer necessary. it is just good government to ensure that individuals still have a need to know. in 2013, then director of national intelligence, james clapper, called the number of individuals with clearances, quote, too high, unquote. and a memo to government agencies director clapper expressed his concern with the growing number of individuals
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with classified information, particularly tsci clearances. security clearances are costly to investigate, adjudicate, and maintain this. bill will ensure that d.h.s. conducts a thorough accounting of its work force needs and reduces the number of positions if determined appropriate. the bill also includes requirements for additional transparency and our security clearances are adjudicated. including when there are reasons to suspend or deny a security clearance. h.r. 687 introduced by ranking member thompson is an example of the accounting at each federal department should be conducting today. and will lead to more effective and lean department of homeland security in the future. the bill is identical to the version the house passed last congress by voice vote. i urge support for the gentleman's bill and i reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from new york reserves the balance of his time. the gentleman from mississippi is recognized. mr. thompson: mr. speaker, i rise in support of h.r. 697, the department of homeland security clearance management administration act and i yield
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myself such time as i may consume. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized for such time. mr. thompson: thank you, mr. speaker. mr. speaker, i want to start off by thanking chairman of the counterterrorism subcommittee, mr. king, as well as chairman mccaul, for their support for my bill. i reintroduced h.r. 697, the department of homeland security clearance management and administration act, to reform how the department manages its security clearance processes. this measure, which the house approved by voice vote in november, 2015, specifically addresses how d.h.s. carries out the complex and extensive task of, number one, identifying positions that warrant security clearances. number two, investigating candidates for clearances. and number three, administering its clearance adjudications denials, suspensions, revocation, and appeal processes
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. since september 11, there has been a massive proliferation of classified materials across the federal government, along with the enormous growth in classified materials holding has come a sizable growth in the number of federal positions requiring security clearances. h.r. 697 reflects regulations issued by the office of personnel management and the office of the director of national intelligence to help ensure that national security positions are properly designed for federal agencies. by doing so, agencies can avoid the costly exercise of recruiting, investigating, and hiring individuals at clearance levels and salaries well above what is necessary. simply put, mr. speaker, h.r. 697 seeks to put d.h.s. on a path to right sizing the number of classified positions in its work force.
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specifically, my bill directs d.h.s. to ensure that the sensitivity levels of national security positions are designated appropriately across the department and its components. it also requires the department's chief security officer to admit national security positions periodically -- to audit national security positions periodically to ensure that such security designations are still appropriate. additionally, the bill directs d.h.s. to develop a plan to ensure that adjudications of eligibility for a security clearance are done accurately across the department. lastly, mr. speaker, in response to the growing security threats from data breaches, my bill also provides safeguards for the protection of the applicants' personnel information. with that, mr. speaker, i urge passage of h.r. 697, and i reserve the balance of my time.
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the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman reserves the balance of his time. the gentleman from new york is recognized. mr. king: mr. speaker, i have no more speakers. the gentleman from mississippi has no further speakers, i am prepared to close once the gentleman does. the speaker pro tempore: if the gentleman from mississippi has no additional speakers, he is recognized to close debate on this bill for the minority. mr. thompson: thank you, mr. speaker. i do not have any further speakers on the bill. i am prepared to close. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. thompson: thank you, mr. speaker. as i mentioned, passage of h.r. 697 will help ensure that the department of homeland security takes targeted steps to improve critical aspects of its security clearance program. if enacted, h.r. 697 would make d.h.s. a leader among federal agencies with respect to security clearance and position designation practices. with that, mr. speaker, i ask my colleagues' support and yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back the
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balance of his time. the gentleman from new york is recognized to close debate on the bill. mr. king: mr. speaker, i once again thank the gentleman and commend him for his leadership on this issue. i urge my colleagues to support h.r. 697. i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. all time having exspiferede on this bill, the question is, will the house suspend the rules and pass the bill h.r. 697. so many as are in favor say aye. so many as are in favor say aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair, 2/3 of those voting having responded in the affirmative, the rules are suspended, the bill is passed, and without objection the motion to reconsider is laid pon the table. for what purpose does the gentleman from new york seek recognition? mr. king: mr. speaker, i move the house suspend the rules and pass h.r. 642. the speaker pro tempore: the clerk will report the title of the bill. the clerk: h.r. 642, a bill to amend the homeland security act of 2002 to enhance the partnership between the department of homeland security
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and the national network of fusion centers, and for other purposes. the speaker pro tempore: pursuant to the rule, the gentleman from new york, mr. king, and the gentleman from mississippi, mr. thompson, each will control 20 minutes. the chair recognizes the gentleman from new york. mr. king: mr. speaker, i ask unanimous consent that all members may have five legislative days to revise and and include remarks any extraneous material on the bill under consideration. the speaker pro tempore: without objection, so ordered. mr. king: mr. speaker, i yield myself such time as i may consume. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized for such time. mr. king: mr. speaker, i rise in support of h.r. 642, the fusion certainty enhancement act of 2017, introduced by the gentleman from pennsylvania, my good friend, congressman barletta. the bill before us today, mr. speaker, is focused on improving the partnership between the department of homeland security and the national network of fusion centers. the bill amends section 210-a of the homeland security act to clarify and enhance the partnership between d.h.s. and fusion centers. as united states is facing the
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highest threat environments since 9/11, it is vital that state and local agencies are receiving real time threat information and have access to federal intelligence and support. this was a key lesson learned from the 9/11 terror attacks, unfortunately reinforced after the 2012 boston marathon bombing. d.h.s. is a legal mandate to assist fusion centers in this effort, and h.r. 642 helps move the ball forward. the threat of lone wolves inspired by isis and other radical islamist terrorist groups are not deteriorating, and it is critical there are strong partnerships between the federal government and state and local law enforcement agencies. this bill will help the department and the national network maintain and improve their current partnership. this bill passed the house last congress by voice vote and i am pleased the house is willing to move it again this year. i want to thank congressman barletta for leading the committee's efforts in developing this responsible and commonsense legislation. congressman barletta's background as a businessman,
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city councilman, mayor, and congressman left him with a strong commitment to public safety and security. it's been a pleasure to work with him on the homeland security committee where he is a vocal advocate for federal, state, and local coordination and information sharing. i urge my colleagues to support this bill to ensure that the partnership between d.h.s. and the national network is strong and agile to protect united states against the ever changing terrorism threat. i reserve the balance of my time. . the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from new york reserves the balance of his time. the gentleman from mississippi is recognized. mr. thompson: thank you, mr. speaker. i rise in support of h.r. 642, the fusion center enhancement act of 2017, and i yield myself such time as i may consume. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized for such time. thompson thank you, mr. speaker. mr. speaker, -- mr. thompson: thank you, mr. speaker. mr. speaker, last congress we updated the department of homeland security's national network of fusion centers. h.r. 642 clarifies that fusion centers are state and locally
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owned and operated and requires the department office of intelligence and analysis to provide support to centers in its network by deploying personnel and providing access to timely information. importantly, h.r. 642 also adds several new responsibilities to do d.h.s.'s undersecretary of intelligence and analysis with respect to the grant guidance, nationwide sprishes activity reports and fusion centers access to information. the bill makes several technical changes to existing law to help ensure more information sharing resources are made available to federal, state and local law enforcement officials at our national network of fusion centers. if enacted, h.r. 642 will go a long way to provide states and localities that have invested significant resources in
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standing up fusion centers with the support they need to keep their communities and ultimately the nation secured. with that, mr. speaker, i urge the passage of h.r. 642 and reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from mississippi reserves the balance of his time. the gentleman from new york is recognized. mr. king: mr. speaker, i yield as much time as he may consume to the distinguished gentleman from pennsylvania, the sponsor of this legislation, mr. barletta. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from pennsylvania is recognized for such time as he may consume. mr. barletta: mr. speaker, i thank mr. king for yielding and i rise in support of h.r. 642. i want to thank him and chairman mccaul for working with me to introduce this legislation. the purpose of my bill is to clarify and enhance the partnership between the department of homeland security and the national network of fusion centers. the bill amends the existing statute to update the department's responsibilities for sharing information with
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state and local law enforcement and other emergency personnel within the national network of fusion centers. after the 9/11 terrorist attacks, state and local governments created fusion centers as a way to communicate federal homeland security information to state and local law enforcement officials as well as few state and locally collected information with federal intelligence. congress supported this partnership by mandating that office of intelligence and analysis within the department of homeland security coordinate and share information with fusion centers. there are now 78 state and locally owned fusion centers across the country. i would especially like to recognize the work of the pennsylvania criminal intelligence center, pcic, which is run by the pennsylvania state police. in 2015 our fusion center received the fusion center of the year award from the
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national fusion center association. i want to congratulate the men and women working at pcic for their commitment, security and public safety. they share vital information with police departments that keep officers and our citizens safe. pcic provides intelligence and information products to over 1200 local, state and federal criminal justice agencies while also working with over 6,000 private and public center partners to also share information to help protect critical infrastructure and key resources. our center has been nationally recognized for their training and compliance with issues of privacy, civil rights and civil liberties. they produce documents that highlight threats and scams that target pennsylvanians and help make sure that local police departments have information on public events ranging from little league world series to the visit of pope francis. a significant amount of
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progress has been made by states and fusion centers within the national network to improve information sharing and analytic support. many centers, including pcic, provide all crime -- all-crime, all-hazard support. taint sharing specific activity support -- maintain sharing specific activity support. h.r. 642 will help support, share information and coordinate with fusion centers. this includes improving coordination with other federal departments to provide better operational intelligence, reduce inefficiencies and coordinationwide suspicious activity reporting. as a maybe of the homeland security committee and a former mayor, i have heard concerns raised by law enforcement in my
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district and elsewhere about the lack of information and coordination from several d.h.s. component agencies, including i.c.e. and c.b.p. to address this issue, i included language in this bill to direct the department to ensure that each component is providing information and personnel to work with fusion centers. to address the need for better accountability, language is included throughout the bill requiring d.h.s. to coordinate with fusion centers and state homeland security advisors in carrying out the assigned responsibilities. additionally, there is a requirement for the department to submit a report to congress on their efforts, including the components to support fusion centers and specifically report on how they are meeting the requirements that are set forth in this bill. i urge my colleagues to support this bipartisan bill so that we can add important requirements and accountability in how the
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department of homeland security interacts and shares information with key state and local stakeholders. i'll yield back my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from pennsylvania yields back. the gentleman from mississippi is recognized. mr. thompson: mr. speaker, i have no further speakers on my side, and i am prepared to close at this time. i reserve. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from mississippi reserves. the gentleman from new york is recognized. mr. king: mr. speaker, i yield one minute to the distinguished gentleman from kansas, mr. marshall. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from kansas is recognized for one minute. mr. marshall: mr. speaker, i rise today in support of h.r. 642, the fusion center enhancement act. i spent the last two years traveling across the state of kansas and was reminded time and time again that national security is a top three issue for my residents. why is this? after years of turmoil and the lack of strong american leadership, people in kansas no
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longer feel safe. this legislation that my colleague from pennsylvania has introduced will ensure that those on the front line of protecting our nation's citizens they have access to the critical information to protect our national center and security. fusion centers conduct analysis and facilitate information sharing which are necessary and fundamental actions that assist state and local law enforcement in preventing and responding to crime and terrorism. just this last week, i had the opportunity to go back to my staff and visit the kansas threat integration center in topeka, kansas, and i can assure you that the work they're doing is vital to the citizens and to the state. they focus on protecting our critical infrastructure. i encourage my colleagues to support h.r. 642 and yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the time of the gentleman has expired. the gentleman from mississippi is recognized. mr. thompson: mr. speaker, i am
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prepared to close if the gentleman from new york is prepared to close. mr. king: i have no further speakers. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from mississippi is recognized to close debate for the minority. mr. thompson: thank you very much, mr. speaker. i yield myself such time as i may consume. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized for such time. mr. thompson: thank you, mr. speaker. in closing, mr. speaker, i want to express my support for this bill. mr. speaker, i urge passage of h.r. 642, the fusion center enhancement act of 2017, which if enacted, would send a message that congress values the investment that states and localities have made to address the challenges of a post-9/11 world and stand with d.h.s. in supporting the national network of fusion centers. with that, mr. speaker, i urge passage of h.r. 642 and yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from mississippi yields back. the gentleman from new york is recognized to close debate. mr. king: thank you, mr. speaker.
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first, i ask unanimous consent to insert into the record a letter exchanged between the committee on homeland security and the committee on transportation and infrastructure. the speaker pro tempore: without objection, so ordered. mr. king: mr. speaker, i urge -- strongly urge support of the gentleman's bill. i urge my colleagues to vote for h.r. 642, to bolesering the relationship between the department of homeland security and the state and local stakeholders and yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back. all time having expired on this bill the question is will the house suspend the rules and pass the bill h.r. 642. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair, 2/3 having responded in the affirmative, the rules are suspended, the bill is passed, and without objection the motion to reconsider is laid on the table.
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the speaker pro tempore: for what purpose does the gentleman from new york seek recognition? >> mr. speaker, i move the house suspend the rules and pass h.r. 526 as amended. the speaker pro tempore: the clerk will report the title of the bill. the clerk: h.r. 526, a bill to amend the homeland security act of 2002 to establish in the department of homeland security a board to coordinate and integrate departmental intelligence, activities, and policy related to counterterrorism and for other purposes. the speaker pro tempore: pursuant to the rule, the gentleman from new york, mr. katko, and the gentleman from mississippi, mr. thompson, each will control 20 minutes. the chair now recognizes the gentleman from new york. mr. katko: mr. speaker, i ask unanimous consent that all members may have five legislative days to revise and extend their remarks and include any extraneous material on the bill under consideration. the speaker pro tempore: without objection, so ordered. mr. katko: mr. speaker, i yield myself such time as i may consume. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized for such time as he may consume. mr. katko: thank you, mr. speaker.
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nearly 16 years after september 11, our country continues to face the persistent threat of terrorism, from isis to al qaeda, radical groups continue to target the united states and our way of life. last year alone, we saw more than 131 plots by isis alone against the west. as terrorists continue to evolve, this body must ensure that the security measures in place to protect the united states and its citizens adapt to meet these threats. faced with the most dangerous threat environment since 9/11, the department of homeland security needs to continue to focus on its core mission of protecting americans from these threats in an increasingly expeditious manner. i am proud this body is working to continue to strengthen our national security by debating the bill before us today. h.r. 526, the counterterrorism advisory board authorization act, will help integrate intelligence, operations and policy decisions to ensure the department of homeland security
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remains adaptable by eliminating waste and duplication. this same bill was introduced last year and passed the house by an overwhelming majority. mr. speaker, with open investigations in all 50 states and more than 119 arrests, this body must continue to take action to protect our homeland. further, these threats will likely expand as foreign fighters flee places like raqqah and mostle. mr. speaker, the world is -- mosul. mr. speaker, the world is facing the worst threat. more fighters have traveled to the battlefields in syria and iraq. with this threat environment in mind, i've introduced h.r. 526. initially established at the end of 2010, the counterterrorism advisory board brings together the department of homeland security's top echelon counterterrorism decision erk makers.
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while we were combating the foreign fighter travel, we ound that the counterterrorism board did not keep pace with the threats. we need to pass this bill to make sure that d.h.s. has policy to better compile and understand threat information to successfully fight terrorism. this legislation formerly establishes the ctap in law and makes it the central coordination body for counterterrorism activities and updates the board's charter to effectively respond to tomorrow's challenges and requires the secretary to appoint a coordinator for counterterrorism to oversee the board's activities. additionally, this legislation requires the ctab to advise the secretary of homeland security on the issuance of terrorism alerts, ensuring that top counterterrorism officials provide these to the public. finally, this bill continues congressional oversight by
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requiring d.h.s. to report on the status and activities of the ctab so we can be sure it is meeting its mandate. i'd like to thank chairman mccaul from the homeland security committee for appointing me to lead the task force on foreign fighter travel last year. this task force produced 32 key findings and more than 50 recommendations, one of which serves as a basis for the legislation before us today. m proud to say we have now acted legislatively on the task force's findings thanks in large part to the task force and their willingness to work across the aisle in a bipartisan manner. i want to thank mr. thompson for working in a bipartisan manner on this and many other bills we have before us today. i will end by urging my colleagues to support this measure and i will reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman reserves. the chair recognizes the gentleman from mississippi. mr. thompson: thank you, mr. speaker. mr. thompson: i rise in support
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of h.r. 526, the counterterrorism advisory board act of 2017 and yield myself such time as may consume. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. thompson: h.r. 526 authorizes within the department of homeland security the counterterrorism advisory boar, or ctab, coordinate the department's intelligence policies and activities as related to counterterrorism. since 010, this internal body, comprised of top d.h.s. official, has helped to harr monoize counterterrorism programs and activities across d.h.s. h.r. 526 directs the board to meet on a regular basis to coordinate and integrate the department's counterterrorism efforts and set forth the leadership and composition of the board. h.r. 526 also requires d.h.s. to report to congress on the board's status and activities. to ensure that the board remains
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an integral part of counterterrorism policy recommendations and responses across the department, h.r. 526 would codify it in law. at this time, when homeland security challenges we face are in many ways more complex and diverse than ever before, it is essential that the new d.h.s. secretary and any successors have a mature, stable mechanism for counterterrorism decision making just as his predecessors had. with that, mr. speaker, i urge the passage of h.r. 526 and reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman reserves. the gentleman from new york. mr. king: i have no further speakers. if the gentleman from mississippi has none, i'm prepared to close once the gentleman does. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from mississippi. mr. thompson: i have no further speakers on my side and am prepared to close. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. thompson: i yield myself
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such time as i may consume. thank you, mr. speaker. again, h.r. 526 will authorize within the department of homeland security the counterterrorism advisory board to coordinate and integrate the department's intelligence activities and policies as related to counterterrorism. this board already plays a central and necessary role within d.h.s. enactment of h.r. 526 will ensure the counterterrorism advisory board will remain in place for years and decades to come. with that, mr. speaker, i urge passage of h.r. 526 and yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back. the gentleman from new york. mr. king: i urge support of the bill and yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the question is on the passage of
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the bill. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair, 2/3 being in the affirmative, the bill is passed and without objection the motion to reconsider is laid on the table. >> i move that the house suspend the rules and pass the bill h.r. 665, the airport perimeter and access control security act of 2017. the speaker pro tempore: the clerk will report the title of the bill. the clerk: h.r. 665, a bill to modify and enhance airport perimeter and access sess control security through the development of security strategies and for other purposes. the speaker pro tempore: pursuant to the rule, the gentleman from new york, mr. katko and the gentleman from massachusetts, mr. keating, each will control 20 minutes. the chair recognizes the gentleman from new york. mr. katko: i ask unanimous consent that all members have five legislative days to revise and extend their remarks and include any extraneous severals on the bill under consideration. the speaker pro tempore: without objection. mr. katko: i yield myself such
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time as i may consume. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. katko: i rise in strong support of h.r. 665, the airport perimeter and access control security act, sponsored by my good friend and colleague, congressman keating. over the course of the last year we have seen a disturbing number of attacks against airports and aircrafts overseas and around the world. in each case the security of the airport has been of utmost concern. it is important that we ensure the peculiar can have confidence that their travels will be safe and secure in a high threat environment. this requires that the t.s.a.'s comprehensive risk assessment of perimeter and access control security is more regularly updated and the t.s.a. conducts access vulnerabilities and mitigation efforts. something t.s.a. has not done across the board since 2012 despite multiple security
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breaches at airports across the country. we have cannot allow lapses in security around the perimeter and in the sterile area of airports. a dead bolt on the front door does no good if the back door slept wide open. congressman keating and i have seen firsthand the disturbing vulnerabilities at airports across the united states. tremendous efforts to help ep hance security for the american people. while there may be gridlock and partisan bickering at times, on the homeland security committee we hair an unshakeable commitment to ensuring the safety of the traveling public because we know the consequence of failure are too great. mr. speaker, i thank congressman ketoing for introducing this porn legislation. i urge my colleagues to support this bipartisan bill and i reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman reserves. the jlt from massachusetts. mr. keating: i rise today in support of h.r. 665, the airport
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perimeter and access control security act, and yield myself such time as i may consume. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. keating: thank you, mr. speaker. i'm proud to be joined by my colleague from new york, mr. katko, as well as my colleagues, ranking member thompson and rice, richmond and swalwell. since i first was elected to congress in 2010, i've worked to secure our nation's airports from porous perimeters and unsecured access control points. last year at my request, the government accountability office released an independent report of all airports within the transportation security administration's presence. while t.s.a. has made some progress in assessing risk at airport perimeter, the g.a.o. report revealed that the agency had not taken emerging threats or the unique makeup and design of individual airports into consideration. more and more we've seen that
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terrorists are targeting the soft areas in our airport perimeters and within the airport itself. terrorists looking for these soft targets, we have seen it in europe. we've seen these tragedies in brussels. we've seen it in istanbul and sadly, we've seen it here at home in fort lauderdale. updating the risk assessment of airport security with information that reflects the current threat ensures that t.s.a. bases its decision on the latest information, enabling it to focus limited resources on the heegest priority risks to airport security. e t.s.a.'s efforts to access really our entire airport security around the country has been frankly inadequate. the numbers are startling. from 2009 to 2015, t.s.a. conducted kmp rehencive risk assessments at only 81 of the
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437 commercial airports nationwide. or 19%. some years, this really represented only 3% of the airports that were assessed at all. the airport perimeter and access control security act will make law the recommendations from the independent report and increase safety at airports nationwide. further, this bill incorporates the input of major airport operators whose concerns for a lack of individualized security strategy we heard from firsthand. last year, the associateds prerevealed that there have been at least 268 perimeter security breaches at 31 major u.s. airports. from 2004 to 2015, their investigation found that intruders breached airport fences on average every 13 days. this figure includes a fatal
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incident a tragic incident, that i investigated before i came to congress as a district attorney when delvon tai tisdale a teenager from north carolina, snuck on the tar macat charlotte douglas international airport and stowed away undetected in a wheel well of a commercial 737 on a flight to boston. the figures i mention really dent act for many unreported instances of perimeter breaches, including things like trespassers or people that scale the fence around the perimeter. we're lucky that all these individuals do not harbor nefarious intentions. but that does not mitigate the risk posed by such behavior at airports and employees and others and the passengers and travelers who rely on t.s. ample officers in the airport -- and the airport operators were their security. as you may recall, this legislation passed the house of
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representatives with the support of my colleagues last year and it's been a long time coming. i urge my colleagues to support this bill and i reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman reserves. the gentleman from new york. mr. katko: before i close i want to commend my colleague for his unwavering dedication to issue. his passion shazz shown through committee hearings and in working with him. i urge my colleagues to support h.r. 665 and i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back. mr. keating: i am prepared to close if the gentleman is prepared to close. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman has yielded back. mr. keating: i want to thank everyone that worked so hard to make this bill a reality and to have the success it did last year and hopefully go all the way and be enacted into law this year. the recent tragedies demonstrated at airports remain
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a target for the nares actors. this legislation will close loops in airport security practices and bring us closer to ensuring the access control points and the perimeters of all the unique designs are secure as possible. passage of h.r. 665 is an important step in the safety of passengers, pilots, and airport employees. i'd like to thank the chairman of the transportation subcommittee again, mr. katko, the full committee ranking member, mr. thompson, and representatives rice and richmond as well for requesting this report and supporting this legislation. i urge my colleagues to support h.r. 665 an i yield the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back. the question is, will the house suspend the rules and pass the bill h.r. 665. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair, 2/3 being in the affirmative, the rules are suspended, the bill is passed, and without objection the motion to reconsider is laid n the table.
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for what purpose does the gentlelady from arizona seek recognition? >> i move that the house suspend the rules and pass h.r. 505 as amended. the speaker pro tempore: the clerk will report the title. the clerk: h.r. 505 to strengthen the homeland security act for border security technology at the department of homeland security and for other purposes. the speaker pro tempore: pursuant to the rule, the gentlelady from arizona, ms. mcsally, and the gentleman from massachusetts each will control 20 minutes. the chair recognizes the gentlelady from arizona. ms. mcsally: i ask unanimous that members have five legislative days to eth rhett their remarks. the speaker pro tempore: without objection.
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ms. mcsally: this bill seeks to improve the management of border security management prgts, safeguard taxpayer dollars and increase accountability for some of the department of homeland security's largest acquisition programs. as the committee chair with responsibility for the entire 2,000 mile southern border and as a member whose district represents 80 miles of the border, i've spent countless hours meeting with border residents, local law enforcement, ranchers and men and women who tirelessly patrol the border every day. i know firsthand when our border technology projects lack proper oversight and accountability, it is bad for taxpayers, those who defend our border and those who live along our border. that's why this bill is so important. the government accountability office has repeatedly included d.h.s. acquisition management activities on its high-risk list, demonstrating these program are highly susceptible to waste, fraud, abuse, or mismanagement. the secure border initiative is a prime example of acquisition
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mismanagement. initial plans developed in 2005 and 2006 call for it to extend across the entire u.s.-mexico land border. however deployment in arizona was fraught with mismanagement, including a failure to adequately set requirements so the system would meet the needs of its users, our border patrol agents. after spending nearly $1 billion of taxpayer money with minimal results, d.h.s. canceled s.b.i. net in 2011, showing the high cost of failing to properly oversee new border acquisitions. with a renewed focus from the administration and this congress on improving border security this bill helps ensure american dollar -- americans' dollars are used efficiently and effectively as possible. it requires that border security technology programs at the department have an acquisition program baseline. a critical document that lays out what a program will do, what it will cost, and when it would be completed. the bill also requires programs to adhere to internal control
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standards and have a plan for testing and evaluation as well as the use of independent verification and validation resources. being proper stewards of our limited resources requires that programs are on time, on budget, and follow sound management procedures. we cannot afford to waste another minute or another dollar. we must put into place strong, effective technology programs to secure our border. i urge all members to join me in supporting these basic, commonsense cost control mechanisms so that we can responsibly secure our border. i reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlelady reserves. the gentleman from massachusetts. . >> i'd like to thank the gentlelady from arizona for her work on this bill. and state that over the past several years, the government accountability office has examined various homeland security programs and concluded that the department has not followed standard best practices for acquisitions management.
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mr. keating: though d.h.s. has taken steps to improve its performance, there remains specific deficiencies in how it carries out major acquisitions. when a d.h.s. acquisition program falls short in terms of its effectiveness or efficiency, this not only risks undermining that program, but also risks wasting the limited homeland security dollars that are available to us. we owe it to the american public not to repeat our mistakes. this bill is intended to strengthen accountability for the acquisition and use of border security technology by the department of homeland security. this bill would require all major acquisitions for border security technology to have written documentation of costs, schedule and performance thresholds and demonstrates that the program is meeting these hresholds. the bill also requires coordination and submission to congress of a plan of testing, evaluation and the use of
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independent verification and validation of resources for border security technology. addressing border security technology acquisition s is an important step -- is an important -- acquisitions is an important step. we owe it to american taxpayers to make sure we're managing these investments wisely and preventing wasteful spending. with that, mr. speaker, i reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman reserves the balance of his time. the gentlelady from arizona. ms. mcsally: mr. speaker, i have no more speakers. if the gentleman from massachusetts has no further speak, -- speakers, i'm prepared do to close once the gentleman does. -- prepared to close once the gentleman does. mr. keating: i yield myself such time as i may consume. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. keating: mr. speaker, h.r. 505 aims to focus and improve the way we invest and manage border security technology by providing a specific framework for accountability and oversight on behalf of the american taxpayer. i urge my colleague to support this bill and yield back the balance of my time -- colleagues to support this bill and i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back the
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balance of his time. the gentlelady from arizona. ms. mcsally: mr. speaker, i once again urge my colleagues to support h.r. 505, to have transparency, accountability and efficiency of vital border security technology projects, and i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlelady yields back the balance of her time. the question is, will the house suspend the rules and pass the bill, h.r. 505, as amended. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair, 2/3 of those voting having responded in the affirmative, the rules are suspended, the bill is passed and, without objection, the motion to reconsider is laid on the table. for what purpose does the gentlelady from arizona seek recognition? ms. mcsally: mr. speaker, i move that the house suspend the rules and pass h.r. 677. the speaker pro tempore: the clerk will report the title of the bill. the clerk: h.r. 677. a bill to amend the homeland security act of 2002, to establish chemical, biological, radiological and nuclear intelligence and information sharing functions of the office of intelligence and analysis of the department of homeland security. and to require dissemination of information analyzed by the
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department to entities with responsibilities relating to homeland security and for other purposes. the speaker pro tempore: pursuant to the rule, the gentlelady from arizona, and the gentleman from massachusetts, will each control 20 minutes. the chair recognizes the gentlelady from arizona. ms. mcsally: i ask unanimous consent that all members have five legislative days within which to revise and extend their remarks and include extraneous material on the bill under consideration. the speaker pro tempore: without objection. ms. mcsally: mr. speaker, i yield myself such time as i may consume. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlelady is recognized. ms. mcsally: thank you, mr. speaker. i rise today in support of h.r. 677, the cbrn intelligence and information sharing act of 2017. we know that terrorist groups have long sought to employ chemical, biological, radiological and nuclear, or cbrn, materials in their attacks. in the 2016 worldwide threat assessment, the director of national intelligence noted that weapon of mass destruction continue to pose a threat to the united states. whether it's from north korea's nuclear test or the dual use nature of biological materials
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that make threats difficult to detect. in addition, last year the organization for the prohibition of chemical weapons completed a year-long investigation, found that both syria and cispa have used chemical weapon -- isis have used chemical weapons. isis' interest in using weapons of mass destruction material in attacks against the west is also well documented. h.r. 677 will enhance intelligence analysis and information sharing and will work to ensure that state and local officials get the actionable intelligence information necessary to stop or mitigate a cbrn attack. as the previous chairwoman of the emergency preparedness response and communications subcommittee, i held a number of hearings on the threat posed by terrorist attacks using cbrn agents. many national security experts, first responders and members of the law enforcement community have testified to the need of increased information sharing with appropriate state and local officials and emergency responders. this budget-neutral bill seeks to address those findings. it requires the office of intelligence and analysis at
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d.h.s. to support homeland security focus intelligence analysis of cbrn threats, including emerging infectious diseases. it directs the office of intelligence of analysis to share information with state, local, tribal and private entities, and get their feedback to improve two-way sharing of information. of -- finally this directs the secretary of d.h.s. to report annually for five years on the department's intelligence and information sharing activities and d.h.s.'s activities in accordance with relevant intelligence strategies. the house passed a nearly identical bill i introduced last congress by a vote of 420-2. i urge members to join me in supporting this bill and i reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlelady reserves the balance of her time. the gentleman from massachusetts. mr. keating: thank you, mr. speaker. i rise in support of h.r. 677, the cbrn intelligence and information sharing act of 2017. and i yield myself such time as i may consume. last congress the committee on homeland security held several
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hearings to evaluate federal, state and local capabilities to prevent, identify and respond to a chemical, biological and radiological or a nuclear attack . a cbrn threat. although the state and local stakeholders -- from them we heard that generally they were aware of an evolving cbrn threat. there was a consistent message from whonche testified. from public -- everyone who testified from public health professionals, emergency managers and first responders. improved information sharing would make our communities safer. h.r. 677 would facilitate improved cbrn information sharing by directing d.h.s. to analyze cbrn-related terrorist threats and share relevant threat information with federal, state and local stakeholders. these activities will both improve situational awareness at all levels of government and help d.h.s. grant recipients better, targeted and limited
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grant dollars to address this particular threat. the cbrn intelligence and information sharing act passed the house overwhelmingly last congress, and i urge my colleagues to support the measure once again. with that i reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman reserves the balance of his time. the gentlelady from arizona. ms. mcsally: mr. speaker, i have no more speakers. if the gentleman from massachusetts has no further speakers, i'm prepared to close once the gentleman does. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlelady reserves. the gentleman from massachusetts. mr. keating: i kwleeled myself such time as -- i yield myself such time as i may consume. information share something at the core of ob our ability to respond to threats posed by bad actors. h.r. 677 would facilitate information sharing in the cbrn space where the threats are constantly evolving. this commonsense legislation costs next to nothing, but will reap significant benefits. with that i urge my colleagues to support h.r. 677 and yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. the gentlelady from arizona. ms. mcsally: mr. speaker, i yield myself such time as i may consume. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlelady is recognized. ms. mcsally: mr. speaker, i once again urge my colleagues to support h.r. 677, this legislation that will enhance
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the sharing of cbrn-related threat information. and i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlelady yields back the balance of her time. the question is, will the house suspend the rules and pass the bill, h.r. 677. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair, 2/3 of those voting having responded in the affirmative, the rules are suspended, the bill is passed and, without objection, the motion to reconsider is laid on the table. for what purpose does the gentlelady from arizona seek recognition? ms. mcsally: mr. speaker, i move the house suspend the rules and pass h.r. 67. the speaker pro tempore: the clerk will report the title of the bill. the clerk: h.r. 678, a bill to require an assessment of fusion center personnel needs and for other purposes. the speaker pro tempore: pursuant to the rule, the gentlelady from arizona, ms. mcsally, and the gentleman from massachusetts, mr. keating, will each control 20 minutes. the chair recognizes the gentlelady from arizona. ms. mcsally: mr. speaker, i ask unanimous consent that all members have five legislative days within which to revise and extend their remarks and include any extraneous material on the bill under consideration. the speaker pro tempore: without objection. ms. mcsally: mr. speaker, i yield myself such time as i may consume. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlelady is recognized. ms. mcsally: thank you, mr.
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speaker. i rise today in support of h.r. department of homeland security support to fusion centers act of 2017. ensuring that the federal government is sharing intelligence and homeland security information with state and local officials is a vital component of u.s. national security and our counterterrorism efforts. i've seen firsthand the important work of fusion centers, which disseminate federal threat and intelligence information to local law enforcement and emergency responders. these centers also collect state and local information and fuse it with federal intelligence. there's no doubt that this effort enhances terrorist investigations and creates a more complete domestic threat picture. to help break down information sharing stoveg pipes, my state's fusion center, the arizona counterterrorism intelligence center, and the 77 other fusion centers across the country need greater access to information. particularly from the department of homeland security and its components. while personnel from d.h.s. office of intelligence and
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analysis have been deployed to most fusion centers, one remaining challenge, access to d.h.s. component personnel and information, particularly i.c.e., c.b.p. and t.s.a. to address this issue, this bill requires the g.a.o., the government accountability office, to conduct an assessment of the d.h.s. personnel detailed to fusion centers, and whether deploying additional personnel will enhance threat and homeland security information sharing. this third party assessment of d.h.s. personnel deployments will be valuable when making staffing decisions moving forward. additionally, this bill supports ongoing d.h.s. efforts to sponsor top secret clearances to appropriate state and local analysts in fusion centers. the committee has received countless testimony from state and local law enforcement about the value additional clearances will provide. the bill also directs d.h.s. to review current information technology systems used to share information with fusion centers and make enhancements to ensure systems such as the homeland security information network are
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user-friendly and meeting the needs of state and locals. lastly, the bill requires the undersecretary of the office of intelligence and aa nal sis to sign a -- and analysis to sign a memorandum. the purpose is to lay out what type of information will be shared. between d.h.s. and the fusion centers. and how that information will be protected. a critical element of the department's relationship with the thousands of state and local first responders working in fusion centers is trust. the process will help improve this important connection. our country is at its highest threat posture since 9/11. give the large number of foreign fighters -- given the large number of foreign fighters and isis-inspired thoughts. this bill will help ensure state and local law enforcement officers are getting access to the information needed to protect our communities. i urge all members to support this bill and i reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlewoman reserves the balance of her time. the gentleman from massachusetts. mr. keating: thank you, mr. speaker. i rise in support of h.r. 678 and yield myself such time as i may consume. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. keating: thank you, mr. speaker. i'd like to thank the gentlelady
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from arizona, ms. mcsally. i rise in strong support and as a co-sponsor of h.r. 678, the department of homeland security support for fusion centers act of 2017. since coming to congress, i've worked to enhance and secure intelligence information sharing among both domestic and international partners. a key mechanism to fostering such information sharing has been the development of a network of fusion centers across the nation. these centers allow federal intelligence and homeland security information to be shared with state and local law enforcement and other key stakeholders. for fusion centers to realize their full promise, it remains critical that personnel signed to fusion centers be able to access department of homeland security information data and personnel. in the course of conducting oversight of fusion centers, the committees learn that not enough state and local analysts and officials assigned to these centers have the clearances
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these type of top secret clearances necessary to foster the timely sharing of homeland security information and intelligence. h.r. 678 would authorize d.h.s. to sponsor such state and local analysts for security clearances. last congress this bill passed unanimously by our committee. . with that, i urge passage of h.r. 678 and reserve my time. ms. mcsally: i'm prepared to close once the gentleman does. mr. keating: i yield myself such time as i may consume. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. keating: i urge passage of h.r. 678, the department of homeland security support for fusion centers act of 2017. this will help ensure that key fusion center personnel have access to the security clearance they need to keep our country
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secure. i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back. the gentlelady is recognized. ms. mcsally: one of the core missions of the department of homeland security is to share information. as fusion centers mature into national assets, congress must ensure that department of homeland security is supporting fusion centers with reresources needed to keep our communities safe. i urge my colleagues to vote for h.r. 678 and yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlelady yield back. the question is will the house suspend the rules and pass the bill h.r. 678? those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair, 2/3 being in the affirmative, the rules are suspended, the bill is passed and without objection the motion to reconsider is laid on the table.
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for what purpose does the gentleman from pennsylvania seek recognition? >> thank you, mr. speaker, i move that the house suspend the rules and pass h.r. 366. the speaker pro tempore: the clerk will report the title of the bill. clip h.r. 366, a bill to amend the homeland security act of 2002 to direct the undersecretary for management of the department of homeland security to make certain improvements in managing the department's vehicle fleet and for other purposes. the speaker pro tempore: pursuant to the rule, the gentleman from pennsylvania, mr. perry, and the gentlelady from new jersey, mrs. watson coleman, will each control 20 minutes. the chair recognizes the gentleman from pennsylvania.
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mr. perry: thank you, mr. speaker. i ask unanimous consent that all members have five legislative days to revise and extend their remarks and include extraneous materials on the bill under consideration. the speaker pro tempore: without objection. mr. perry: i yield myself such time as i may consume. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. perry: thank you, mr. speaker. i stand today before you in support of h.r. 366, think d.h.s. stop asset and vehicle excess or d.h.s., department of homeland security, save act of 2016. in october of 2015, the d.h.s. inspector genre leased a scathe regular port of the federal protective services management of their vehicle fleet. a report that reads like a laundry list of poor management decisions. the i.g. found that the f.p.s. had more vehicles than officers and officers were thorsed to drive from home to work with government-owned vehicles and actually put more miles on the vehicle driving from home and back to work than they did on
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the job. among many other things. additionally the report stated it was not in compliance with federal and departmental compliance which is why i introduced the d.h.s. save act. this bill improves the management of the vehicle fleets by authorizing the undersecretary for management at the headquarters level to oversee the components fleet -- vehicle fleets, requires them to evaluate fleets on an ongoing basis, involves penalties for mismanagement of fleets, and requires them to identify alternative methods for flets -- fleets. the d.h.s. must have strictor controls in place at the headquarters level in order to rein in rogue components. as the new administration scrutinizes d.h.s.'s operations this bill will provide important authorities to root out waste, fraud, and abuse from the department. at this time, i urge all members to join me in supporting this
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bill and i reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman reserves. he gentlelady from new jersey. mrs. watson coleman: thank you, mr. speaker. i rise in support of h.r. 366 and yield myself such time as i may consume. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlelady is recognized. mrs. watson coleman: thank you, mr. speaker. h.r. 366 seeks to improve the department of homeland security's management acquisition and oversight of its fleet of roughly 53,000 vehicles. h.r. 366 requires the undersecretary for management to provide departmental components with a standardized vehicle allocation methodology for commonets to utilize to develop fleet management plans. this legislation was informed by oversight conducted by the department's inspector general. the inspector general found that in 2014 and 2015 d.h.s. did not adequately manage or have the enforcement authority over components to ensure that the
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composition of its motor vehicle fleet was right sized this lack of effective management led to the overuse of sports utility vehicles, unnecessary discretionary equipment packages and overpayments to g.s.a. further, the committee on homeland security received testimony from the director of the federal protective services that roughly half of the 1,100 vehicles in the fleet were underutilized or had fewer than 12,000 miles. h.r. 366 grants authority to d.h.s. headquarters over components with respect to managing vehicle fleets. specifically, h.r. 366, d.h.s. is directed to establish requirements for components to more rigorously evaluate their fleets on an ongoing basis. additionally this bill directs d.h.s. to identify alternative methods for managing component fleets, such as a shared motor
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pool. d.h.s. has the second largest civilian vehicle fleet in the federal government at an operating cost of about $462 million. there is a critical linkage between the department's operational effectiveness and national security missions and effective management of the resources and requirements by d.l.: -- by d.h.s. leadership. as such, enhancing oversight and management should help the department more effectively spend limited tax dollars on what the department actually needs to carry out its mission. with that, mr. speaker, i urge passage of h.r. 366 and reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlelady reserves. the gentleman from pennsylvania. mr. perry: i have no other speakers at this time. if the gentlelady has no other speakers, i'm prepared to close once the gentlelady does. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman reserves. the gentlelady from new jersey. mrs. watson coleman: i don't have any further speakers, i yield myself such time as i may consume.
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the speaker pro tempore: the gentlelady is recognized. mrs. watson coleman: thank you, mr. speaker. h.r. 366 looks to strengthen management of d.h.s.'s fleet, it is also worth noting that h.r. 366 includes language that i authored to ensure that the inspector general's oversight of d.h.s.'s management of its vehicle fleet continues. i commend the o.i.g. for tear robust an ongoing oversight of the department's vehicle fleet. i also commend my colleagues on the homeland security committee, mr. perry, for introducing this legislation and working in a bipartisan fashion to advance it. with that, mr. speaker, i urge passage of h.r. 366 and i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlelady yields back. the gentleman from pennsylvania. mr. perry: thank you, mr. speaker. i also commend my colleague for her hard work on this bill and her bipartisan spirit in getting it to the floor with me. i wubs again urge my colleagues to support h.r. 366 and yield back the balance of the time.
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the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back. the question is will the house suspend the rules and pass the bill h.r. 366. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair, 2/3 being in the affirmative, the rules are suspended, the bill is passed, and without objection the motion to reconsider is laid on the table. for what purpose does the gentleman from pennsylvania seek recognition? mr. perry: thank you, mr. speaker. i move that the house suspend the rules and pass h.r. 347. the speaker pro tempore: the clerk will report the tite to feel of the bill. the clerk: h.r. 347 to amend the homeland security act of 2002 to -- for requirements of documentation and for other purposes. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from pennsylvania, mr. perry and the gentlelady from new jersey, mrs. watson coleman, each will control 20 minutes. the chair recognizes the gentleman from pennsylvania. mr. perry: i ask unanimous consent that all members have five legislative days to revise and extend their remarks an include extraneous materials on the bill under consideration.
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the speaker pro tempore: without objection. mr. perry: i yield myself such time as i may consume. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. perry: i rise in support of h.r. 347, the department of homeland security acquisition documentation act. it requires the department of homeland security to improve management of major purposes of systems to secure the border, better screen travelers, protect our shores and other vital missions. too often, d.h.s. has failed to document what these programs will cost. when they will be complete. and what they actually will deliver. it is unacceptable to spend billions of taxpayer dollars and not document this basic but important information. h.r. 347 will help our committee and congressional watchdogs hold the department accountable and ensure taxpayer dollars are being spent in an efficient and effective manner. safeguarding america's hard-earned tax dollars is why our constituents sent us here in the first place. i commend ranking member watson-coleman for her
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leadership on this issue and i ask all members to join me in supporting this legislation and i reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman reserves. the gentlelady from new jersey. ms. watson coleman: thank you, mr. speaker. i rise in support of h.r. 347, the documentation integrity act of 2017 and yield myself such time as i may consume. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlelady is recognized. mrs. watson coleman: i reintroduced h.r. 347, a measure the house unanimously approved on february 23, 2016, to ensure that the progress at the department of homeland security has made with respect to how it manages acquisitions continues. h.r. 347 requires complete, accurate, timely, and valid documentation to be maintained for each of the departments major acquisition programs. which is defined as one with a life cycle cost estimated at $300 million or more. the required documentation includes information regarding
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operational requirements, a complete life cycle cost estimate, a cost benefit analysis, and a schedule. under this legislation, d.h.s. component heads would be required to submit certain documentation to the d.h.s. secretary for inclusion in an annual status report on the department's acquisition. while there have been improvements to acquisition management under the former secretary, jeh johnson, the department has struggled when it comes to deliver aing -- delivering a specific program on time at an established cost. most of the d.h.s.'s major acquisition programs can't to cost more than expected, take longer to deploy than planned, or deliver less capability than promised. for example, d.h.s.' efforts to deliver a department-wide human resources i.t. system, h.r.i.t., has spanned almost 14 years and cost millions of dollars with little to show for it. as can be seen with the case of
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h.r.i.t., anything less than up-to-date acquisition documentation increases the odds of cost and schedule overruns. risk december layed delivery of critical capabilities, and depletes resources needed to -- needed to address future requirements. as such, h.r. 347 codifies best practices already embodied in d.h.s. acquisition policy and necessary for this this -- for the success of the d.h.s. mission. with that, mr. speaker, i urge the passage of h.r. 347 and reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlelady reserves. the gentleman from pennsylvania. mr. perry: i have no other speakers. if the gentlelady from new jersey has no other speakers, i'm prepared to close once the gentlelady does. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman reserves. he gentlelady is recognized. mrs. watson coleman: i yield myself such time as i may consume. h.r. 347 requires the d.h.s. secretary, through the undersecretary of management, to require components to maintain
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specific types of acquisition documentation. representatives mccall and thompson, the chairman and ranking member of our committee, and representative perry, chairman of the subcommittee on oversight and management subcommittee -- committee authored this which bolsters the effectiveness of d.h.s.'s programs in a bipartisan fashion. i urge passage of h.r. 347 a bill that will help ensure that d.h.s. is a good steward of taxpayer dollars and can provide d.h.s. operators in the field with the tools they need to protect the american people and with that, i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlelady yields back. the gentleman from pennsylvania. mr. perry: i once again commend my good friend and colleague for her hard work in offering this viable and meaningful solution. with that, i urge my colleagues to support h.r. 347 and yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back. the question is will the house suspend the rules and pass the bill h.r. 347?
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those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair, 2/3 being in the affirmative, the rules are suspended, the bill is passed, and without objection the motion to reconsider is laid n the table. for what purpose does the gentleman from new york seek recognition? >> mr. speaker, i move that the house suspend the rules and pass h.r. 549. the speaker pro tempore: the clerk will report the title of the bill. the clerk: h.r. 549, a bill to amend the implementing recommendations of the 9/11 commission act of 2007 to clarify certain allowable uses of funds for public transportation security grants and establish periods of performance for such grants and for other purposes. the speaker pro tempore: pursuant to the rule, the gentleman from new york, mr. donovan, and the gentleman from new jersey, mr. payne, will each
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control 20 minutes. the chair recognizes the gentleman from new york. mr. donovan: thank you, mr. speaker. i ask unanimous consent that all members have five legislative days within which to revise and extend their remarks and include any extraneous material on the bill under consideration. the speaker pro tempore: without objection. mr. donovan: mr. speaker, i yield myself such time as i may consume. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. donovan: thank you, mr. speaker. mr. speaker, i rise today in support of h.r. 549, the transit security grant program flexibility act. with more than 10 billion riders using surface transportation annually, and limited security screening, it should not be surprising to us that terrorists have an interest in targeting mass transit. we saw it in london, madrid, and brussels. and when a terrorist left a backpack of i.e.d.'s at a transit station in elizabeth, new jersey, last fall. given the repeated calls from isis and other radical islamic
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terrorist groups for lone wolves and sympathizers to plan smaller attacks where larger crowds gather, we must ensure that the first responders and transit agencies have the tools they need to secure our transit systems. that is why last congress i introduced the transit security grant program flexibility act. this bill addresses concerns raised during a field hearing the subcommittee on emergency preparedness response and communications held last year in ranking member payne's district on preparedness for incidents impacting surface transportation. as chairman of that subcommittee, i introduced this legislation to ensure action follows our subcommittee's oversight. and that is why i reintroduced this commonsense legislation in the 115th congress. witnesses at last year's field hearing testified about the importance of the transit
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security grant program. but found that the period of performance was a challenging time frame to meet. especially for completing vital, large-scale, capital security projects. these projects are vital to transit agencies, to help enhance their security features, system-wide and hardened infrastructure. h.r. 549 addresses this challenge by codifying the period of performance for transit security grant program awards at 36 months, for the majority of eligible programs -- projects, and extending the period of ferre for -- performance for large scale projects to 55 months. additionally, transit security grant program awards can be used to provide personnel with effective security training. unfortunately recipients of these awards are not currently permitted to use transit security grant program funds to pay for back filling personnel atebleding such training --
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attending such training. in some cases, that extra cost at the transit agency has resulted in an inability to send staff for vital security training. my bill will permit transit security grant program funds to be used for this purpose, consistent with other homeland security grant programs. the current threat environment is evolving and complex. which makes it even more imperative that the transit security grant program provide flexible solutions for grant recipients. i am proud to sponsor this bipartisan legislation, which passed the house by voice vote last year. i urge all members to join me in supporting h.r. 549, and i reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman reserves the balance of his time. the gentleman from new jersey. mr. payne: mr. speaker a, i rise in support of h.r. -- mr. speaker, i rise in support of h.r. 549, the transit security grant program flexibility act, and yield myself as much time as i may consume. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. payne: thank you, mr.
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speaker. as the threats to our homeland continue to evolve, transit systems domestically and abroad have become a leading target for terrorists. last year the committee on homeland security subcommittee for emergency preparedness held a field hearing in new jersey to assess how transit owners and operators in local -- and local first responders were coordinating efforts to secure domestic mass transit. and to determine what federal -- what the federal government could do to assist those efforts. at the hearing, transit operators repeatedly praised the transit security grant program, although they raised serious concerns about funding, which has decreased dramatically since ts peak in 2009. witnesses also testified that
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the period of the performance for the transit safety grant program was too short to support infrastructure hardening projects. under h.r. 549, the period of performance for security hardening projects would be extended from 36 months to 55 months in order to make it possible for transit agencies to complete projects that they -- that may take longer than the time period allowed under current law. this is a bipartisan -- this bipartisan bill was passed in the house last congress and i urge my colleagues to again support this measure. with that, mr. speaker a, i reserve the balance of my time -- mr. speaker, i reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman reserves the balance of his time. the gentleman from new york. mr. donovan: mr. speaker, i have no further speakers. if the gentleman from new jersey has no further speakers, i'm prepared to close once the gentleman has closed. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman reserves the balance
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of his time. the gentleman from new jersey. mr. payne: mr. speaker, i yield myself as much time as i may consume. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. payne: thank you, mr. speaker. it's very important that we give transit professionals the flexibility that they need to keep our transit systems safe and secure. h.r. 549 will allow transit -- will allow transit security grant program grantees to use the funds designated for security hardening projects more efficiently and within a more reasonable time frame. with that, i urge my colleagues to support this important measure and i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. the gentleman from new york. mr. donovan: mr. speaker, i yield myself such time as i may consume. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. donovan: mr. speaker, i once again urge my colleagues to support h.r. 549 and i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. the question is, will the house suspend the rules and pass the bill, h.r. 549. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair, 2/3
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of those voting having responded in the affirmative, the rules are suspended, the bill is passed and, without objection, the motion to reconsider is laid on the table. for what purpose does the gentleman from new york seek recognition? mr. donovan: mr. speaker, i move that the house suspend the rules and pass h.r. 687. the speaker pro tempore: the clerk will report the title of the bill. the clerk: h.r. 687, a bill to amend the homeland security act of 2002, to establish a process to review applications for certain grants to purchase equipment or systems that do not meet or exceed any applicable national voluntary consensus standards, and for other purposes. the speaker pro tempore: pursuant to the rule, the gentleman from new york, mr. donovan, and the gentleman from new jersey, mr. payne, will each control 20 minutes. the chair recognizes the gentleman from new york. mr. donovan: mr. speaker, i ask unanimous consent that all members have five legislative days within which to revise and extend their remarks and include extraneous material on the bill under consideration. the speaker pro tempore: without objection. mr. donovan: mr. speaker, i yield myself such time as i may
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consume. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. donovan: thank you, mr. speaker. as chairman of the subcommittee on emergency preparedness response and communications, i rise today in support of h.r. 687. this legislation would establish a review rosess for grant applicants -- process for grant applicants seeking to purchase equipment or systems that do not meet or exceed national voluntary consensus standards. with threats consistently evolving, it is reassuring to see new technology emerge which will promote the safety of our communities and first responders. however, emerging technology is frequently developed faster than voluntary consensus standards can be implemented. recipients of grants under fema's state homeland security grant program and the urban area security initiative must procure equipment that meets these standards. unfortunately if emerging technology or equipment does not have a voluntary consensus
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standard, and a grant recipient would like to use those funds to purchase such technology, fema does not have a uniform review process to consider applications for that equipment. h.r. 687 requires fema to develop such a process for reviewing these requests. previously this bill was introduced in the 114th congress by the subcommittee's ranking member, mr. payne, and subsequently received bipartisan support by my subcommittee and the committee on homeland security, as well as the house, when it was passed under suspension of the rules in september of 2016. i want to thank my friend, mr. payne, for reintroducing this commonsense bill. i am proud to be an original co-sponsor of h.r. 687, because it will ensure first responders have the ability to purchase equipment and emerging technology needed to effectively adapt to the current threat
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landscape. earlier this month, the committee on homeland security released the january terror threat snapshot, which found that the united states remains a top target for terrorists. it is clear that the threat to our communities is not going away. congress has a responsibility to make america safer and stronger. we can do so by ensuring commonsense measures are in place to ensure first responders have the tools that they need to address these threats. i urge all members to join me in supporting h.r. 687, and i reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman reserves the balance of his time. the gentleman from new jersey is recognized. mr. payne: mr. speaker, i rise in support of h.r. 687, the first responders access to innovative technologies act, and i yield myself as much time as i may consume. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. payne: thank you, mr. speaker.
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i hate when this happens. mr. speaker, in my time serving as ranking member of the committee on homeland security's subcommittee on emergency preparedness response and communications, i've come to learn a great deal about the very important, very challenging job of first responders. these brave men and women run towards dange aer -- danger with our safety as their number one riority, not theirs, but ours. since september 11 -- since the september 11 attacks, the private sector has redoubled its efforts to develop innovative technologies for first responders to use and to carry out their vital missions. yet, though our subcommittee's oversight, we have seen where in some instances industry
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standards have failed to keep up -- keep the pace with breakthroughs in technology. as a result, we have found that first responders cannot always access the most up to date equipment because they cannot use homeland security grant funds to purchase equipment and technology that does not meet or exceed voluntary industry standards. h.r. 687 would require fema to develop a transparent process for reviewing requests to use grant dollars -- grant funds to purchase technology that do not meet or exceed voluntary industry standards -- and/or that are not on the authorized equipment list. the bill has the support of the securities industry association and unanimously passed the house
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last september. i urge my colleagues to again support this measure and i reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman reserves the balance of his time. the gentleman from new york is recognized. mr. donovan: mr. speaker, i have no more speakers. if the gentleman from new jersey has no further speakers, i am prepared to close once the gentleman has done so. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman reserves the balance of his time. the gentleman from new jersey is recognized. mr. payne: mr. speaker, i'd like to submit a letter from the security industry association to be submitted into the record. the speaker pro tempore: without objection. mr. payne: thank you. i have no more speakers. so i'm ready to close. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman reserves the balance of his time. the gentleman is recognized. mr. payne: oh, thank you. thank you, mr. speaker. our first responders are on the front lines of emergency response. in recognition of their bravery and

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