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tv   U.S. House of Representatives U.S. House of Representatives  CSPAN  June 25, 2018 3:16pm-5:16pm EDT

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i have a couple of heartland wisconsin-related questions. there is a group, i am thinking particularly with organized labor that went with trump in this past election. was that an anomaly? are some of the views shifted? >> we'll leave this conversation here as the u.s. house is back. [captions copyright national cable satellite corp. 2018] [captioning performed by the national captioning institute, which is responsible for its caption content and accuracy. visit ncicap.org] will resume proceedings on postponed questions at a later time. for what purpose does the gentleman from arkansas seek recognition? >> mr. speaker, i move to suspend the rules and pass h.r. 5783, the cooperation with law enforcement agencies and watch act of 2018, and amessed. -- amended. the speaker pro tempore: the clerk will report the title of the bill. the clerk: h.r. 5783, a bill to
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provide safe harbor for financial institutions that maintain a customer account at the request of a federal or state law enforcement agency. the speaker pro tempore: pursuant to the rule, the gentleman from arkansas, mr. hill tharninged egentleman from minnesota, mr. ellison, will each control 20 minutes. the chair recognizes the gentleman from arkansas. mr. hill: i ask unanimous consent that all members have five legislative days to revise and extend their remarks and include extraneous material on this bill. the speaker pro tempore: without objection. mr. hill: thanks, mr. speaker. i yield myself such time as i may consume. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. hill: as a former community banker i've dealt with the conflict of wanting to help law enforcement agencies when receiving what's called a keep open letter. while not being able to because the need also to comply with responsibilities in my regulatory responsibilities. the rules on setting out how banks have to open and close a suspected account by regulators. today the overall purpose of
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this bill is to support law enforcement and reduce money laundering and terrorist financing through our banking system. that's why along with my good friend from illinois, pl dr. foster, i was pleased to introduce this commonsense bill. it enables partnerships without repercussions between law enforcement agencies a local -- and local community financial institutions by allowing law enforcement to monitor the cash flows associated with criminal investigations at a financial institution. under the bank secrecy act and the anti-money laundering regulations, banks face strict rules for managing accounts so they cannot facilitate money laundering, terrorism financing, drug running or other illegal activities. sometimes banks receive notices from law enforcement agencies known as keep open letters. that requests a bank to keep open an account so that the law
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enforcement agency can track payments and better monitor criminals. such requests might come from the f.b.i., the drug ens forment administration, the department of homeland securities, the u.s. treasuries financial crimes enforcement network, known as fi ncsf. the local police or other law enforcement agency. if banks comply with keep open letter requests they in turn unfortunately risk being penalized by regulators for allowing an account to be open and continue to be open by someone suspected of a crime. this commonsense bill supports those efforts by law enforcement by allowing the financial institutions to comply with the keep open request, maintain a suspicious account without being penalized by regulators. financial institutions will no longer be liable for maintaining an account for law enforcement
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and -- enforcement investigative purposes. under this bill, no federal department or agency may take an adverse supervisory action with respect to that financial institution for keeping open such an account. this is a commonsense bill and i urge all my cloogs to support it. it will give law enforcement tools they need to prosecute bad oklahoma city arened -- actors and i think be better and more fair in its treatment for our financial institutions. with that, mr. speaker, i reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman reserves. mr. ellison: i yield myself such time as i may consume. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. ellison: this bill would strengthen cooperation between financial institutions and law enfons -- enforcement to better combat terrorism and financial crime by providing a narrow, a. -- rbor from v.s. vsaaml bank act, scrutiny to financial institutions that keep a customer account open at the
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written request of federal and state law enforcement. this cooperation will enable law enforcement agencies to follow the money in the bank accounts of terrorists, human traffickers, corrupt officials, and those involved in organized crime. we support this,s that commonsense, bipartisan bill. and i urge support. i reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman reserves. the gentleman from arkansas. mr. hill: thank you, mr. speaker. we do not other speakers on this bill. i ask my friend from the minority, do you have other speakers on this measure? mr. ellison: we have no further speakers on this issue, and yield back at this time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back. mr. hill: mr. speaker, i would like to urge my colleagues to recognize this was a strong group of bipartisan work by dr. foster and received a -- received solid support in the committee, it balances the law enforcement obligations to
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investigate criminals but also treats the leg raher to -- regulatory system our community institutions in a more fair manner. i hope my colleagues will support it and i 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. 5783 as amended? 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 gentleman from arkansas is recognized. mr. hill: i request the yeas and nays. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman requests the yeas and nays. those in favor of taking this vote by the yeas and nays will rise and remain standing until counted. a sufficient number having risen, the yeas and nays are ordered. pursuant to clause 8 of rule 20, further proceedings on this uestion will be postponed. for what purpose does the gentleman from arkansas seek recognition? mr. hill: i move to suspend the rules and pass the bill h.r.
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435, the credit access and inclues -- inclusion act of 2017 as amended. the speaker pro tempore: the clerk will report the title of the bill. the clerk: union calendar number 429. h.r. 435. a bill to amend the fair credit reporting act to clarify federal law with respect to reporting certain positive consumer credit information to consumer reporting agencies and for other purposes. the speaker pro tempore: pursuant to the rule, the gentleman from arkansas, mr. hill, and the gentleman from minnesota, mr. ellison, will each control 20 minutes. the tchare recognizes the gentleman from arkansas. mr. hill: i yield myself such time as i may consume. i ask unanimous consent that all members have five legislative days to revise and extend their remarks and include extraneous material on this bill. the speaker pro tempore: without objection. mr. hill: thank you, mr. speaker. h.r. 435 introduced by my good friend from minnesota, keith ellison, the credit access and inclusion act of 2017, would amend the fair credit reporting act to authorize the department of housing to furnish consumer credit reports to include
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individual's payment history from rental payments for a dwelling including h.u.d.-subsidized properties -- properties and payment history for utility and telecommunications contracts. i want to thank my friend for his work on making the credit more accessible, making it easier to get the data that consumers need to build a credit record. it's not all just credit card payments, mr. speaker. or payments to banks. this kind of work that my friend from minnesota has tackled improves consumers' ability to build that very, very important thing in our society, access to credit. with that, i reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman reserves. the gentleman from minnesota. mr. ellison: i yield myself such time as i may consume. i want to thank my friend from arkansas and the bipartisan group that came together that to the make this passage of the credit access and inclusion act possible. let me just ask you, or anyone,
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a question. if you could help millions of people get access to an apartment, get a lower cost loan, a lower phone or utility deposit, all without creating a new government program, without spend anything government money, without government mandate, and virtually no new tax dollar, would you take that deal? i think that's a good deal. this is what we're proposing here. i know i would take that deal. i'm urging all members to vote in favor of the passage of the credit access and inclusion act because that's what it would do. simply by saying, we're going to use all the data that consumers rely on now that is not necessarily credit related but does show that they pay their bills to be included in the construction of that credit score. that's why i'm proud to be here today.
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because passage of this bipartisan credit access inclusion act is going to help americans be more successful in this economy. it will reward people who pay their utility and their phone bills on time. it will -- because it's important to note when those bills are not paid on time, they're already reporting. people get credit for -- under this bill for the bill they pay on time and still are able and in a position to be able to get lower, perhaps lower interest rates. get lower deposits they have to put down. and be able to lead more prosperous economic lives. this bill is about bringing some basic fairness to the credit scoring system. credit -- credit is currently -- a currency in our society. it unlocks access to goods and services hardworking americans need to build economic security for themselves and their families. but there are currently, mr. speaker, 26 million, or at least
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one in 10 americans, do not have a credit record. they're what they call invisibles. another 19 million americans do not have enough information to score. low income individuals and racial and ethnic minorities are often in the worst shape. if we want to do something about closing the wealth gap between different peoples of different backgrounds and really bringing economic opportunity to all,s the right bill to take a step. about one in four latinos and african-americans either don't have a credit record or don't have enough of a record to score. and almost half of the residents of low income communities do not have a score. that doesn't mean they don't have needs, mr. speaker. that doesn't mean they don't get phones and dent pay bills and don't get pardon mes. it just means they tend to pay more for them. in fact, we've heard the old adage that the poor pay more, it's expensive to be poor.
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those things are true this bill can make that a little less true and bring a little bit more happiness and economic prosperity to people. this bill allows credit rating agencies to use on-time rent, phone and utility payments when determining credit scores. as a result, more than a third of previously unscoreable americans will now have access to prime credit and opportunities that come with it. this bill isn't just about act stose credit though. it's about a little bit more than that. it is also about saving hardworking americans real money. thousands of dollars, mr. speaker, on their car loans and on their mortgages. because if you're unscoreable, or if you have -- if your score is unnecessarily high because that nonloan data is not counted, you may get the loan ut you'll pay more for it. that's money that could be used to help build a family's wealth.
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create some savings, mr. speaker. so that when you get into an emergency you can use your own money as opposed to going to a payday lender. this is a good bill. that's why it has bipartisan support and that's why i'm glad -- that the an congressman and i were able to work together on it. i yield back my time and ask for a favorable vote. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields. the gentleman from arkansas is recognized. mr. hill: i thank my friend for this bill, i'm pleased to see this bill back on the floor today, i urge bipartisan support for helping all american consumers have a new and better way to help build their credit and get access to credit to preserve the american dream. we have no other speakers on this side and i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields. the question is, will the house suspend the rules and pass the bill h.r. 435 as amended. those in favor say aye.
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those opposed, no. in the ponch 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 arkansas seek recognition? mr. hill: i move to suspend the ules and pass h.r. 4294, the prevention of private information dissemination act of 2017, as amended. the speaker pro tempore: the clerk will report the title of the bill. the clerk: h.r. 4294 a bill to amend the financial stability act of 2010 to provide a criminal penalty for unauthorized disclosures of certain individually identifiable information by officers or employees of a federal department or agency. . the speaker pro tempore: pursuant to the rule, the gentleman from arkansas, mr. hill, and the gentleman from minnesota, mr. ellison, will each control 20 minutes. the chair recognizes the gentleman from arkansas. mr. hill: i thank the speaker. i ask unanimous consent that all members may have five legislative days to revise and extend their remarks and include extraneous material on
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this bill. the speaker pro tempore: without objection. mr. hill: mr. speaker, i also ask unanimous consent that an exchange of letters between the committees of jurisdiction be included in the record. the speaker pro tempore: without objection. mr. hill: thank you, mr. speaker. i yield mr. kustoff of tennessee, the author of this bill, such time as he may consume. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. kustoff: thank you, mr. speaker. i thank my colleague as well. i rise today in support of my bill, h.r. 4294, the venges venges -- the prevention of private information dissemination act of 2017. mr. speaker, this legislation will establish criminal penalties for the unauthorized disclosure of living will and stress test determinations and other individually identifiable information by federal officials. with recent data breaches and leaks of sensitive information, it is essential that we ensure this information is safely guarded and people are punished for their illicit actions. since the enactment of
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dodd-frank in 2010, bank holding and certain nonbank -- sifis designated a areequired to submit annual reports to the federal reserve and the federal deposit insurance corporation, the fdic. the purpose of these reports is to outline the company's strategy for a potential bankruptcy in times of market stress. through the living will and the stress test process, banks submit detailed financial reports about their businesses, such as assets, trade secrets, and other classified information to the federal reserve and to the fdic. unfortunately, mr. speaker, the information has the potential to be leaked by employees, and unfortunately in april of 2016, this did occur.
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in fact, on april 12, 2016, it s discovered that nonpublic, confidential, supervisory information related to the living will results was leaked to the press directly. "the wall street journal" ticle from that day cited, quote, people familiar with the matter, closed quote, indicated that the agency's plan to reject the revised living wills of at least half of the u.s. banks that resubmitted proposals before formal decisions were sent to the institutions. in this instance, the leak was extremely harmful. if financial institutions were preparing their quarterly investor reports, as a result, regulators were forced to formally release their findings the next day. in addition, this private
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information has market moving implications and can result in insider trading and illegal sharing of iformation. mr. speaker, prior to dodd-frank, the fdic did not have market-moving information on high-profile industries. stress test requirements, therefore, meant that the fdic had to create new policies and new procedures to help protect the information. according to the fdic's principal duty inspector general in 2016, the agency is, quote, not there yet, closed quote, and it may not be prepared to safeguard the information. sadly, between 2015 and 2016, the fdic experienced many data breaches that involved employees leaving the company. one such incident occurred in 2015 in which a departing
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employee downloaded sensitive stress test data onto a thumb drive. these leaks are deeply troubling, and overall they're unacceptable. this information could be obtained by individuals to either invest or to divest in particular stocks which obviously can be quite damaging to bank investors and to the capital markets. the unauthorized disclosure of information that can significantly alter the stock market is an extremely punishable offense. by increasing penalties on employees of these agencies, it proves, frankly, that they're not above the law. that's why i introduced this bill to ensure that sensitive market information is properly protected and that people who improperly disclose nonpublic, confident information are in
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fact punished -- confidential information are in fact punished. mr. speaker, ultimately, this is commonsense legislation that will het mitigate future leaks of -- will help mitigate future leaks of sensitive information. i want to thank chairman hensarling and the entire financial servicesmmittee for their continued hard work. i urge my colleagues to support this extremely important legislation. thank you, mr. speaker, and i do yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back. the gentleman from minnesota is recognized. mr. ellison: mr. speaker, the bill makes -- mr. speaker, yumeds. -- i yield myself such time as i may consume. it makes clear that those who willfully disclose agency records that contain personally identifiable information pursuant to section 165 of the dodd-frank act, and these acts are already illegal and this bill is a clarification to make sure that these penalties apply. this is a commonsense
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bipartisan bill, and i urge support and i reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman reserves. the e question is -- gentleman from arkansas. mr. hill: mr. speaker, i don't believe we have other speakers. so we are ready to close and yield back the balance of our time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields. mr. ellison: i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the question is will the house suspend the rules and pass h.r. 4294, as amended. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair -- mr. hill: mr. speaker, i request the yeas and nays. the speaker pro tempore: in the opinion of the chair, 2/3 having responded in the affirmative -- the gentleman from arkansas. mr. hill: mr. speaker, i request the yeas and nays. the speaker pro tempore: the yeas and nays are requested. all those in favor of taking this vote by the yeas and nays will rise and remain standing until counted. a sufficient number having arisen, the yeas and nays are ordered. pursuant to clause 8 of rule 20, further proceedings on this
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question will be postponed. for what purpose does the gentleman from arkansas seek recognition? mr. hill: mr. speaker, i move to suspend the rules and pass h.r. 6069, the find trafficking act, as amended. the speaker pro tempore: the clerk will report the title of the bill. the clerk: union calendar umber 607, h.r. 6069, a bill to require the comptroller general of the united states to carry out a study on how virtual currencies and online marketplaces are used to buy, sell, or facilitate the financing of goods or services associated with sex trafficking , and for fficking ther purposes. the speaker pro tempore: pursuant to the rule, the gentleman from arkansas, mr. hill, and the gentleman from minnesota, mr. ellison, each will control 20 minutes. the chair recognizes the gentleman from arkansas. mr. hill: mr. speaker, i ask unanimous consent that all members may have five legislative days to revise and and their remarks include extraneous material on the bill. the speaker pro tempore: without objection. mr. hill: mr. speaker, i yield myself such time as i may
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consume. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. hill: well, i want to thank my good friend from california, juan vargas, and my colleague from pennsylvania, keith rothfus, for their work together to co-sponsor h.r. 6069, the fight illicit networks and detect trafficking act. this is extremely important and it's in keeping with the work we've been doing in our subcommittee on terror finance, illicit financing, and also the work we've done on this house floor about stopping human trafficking that we see ithis country and also the intensive work in the last two weeks on opioid work and trying to stop these kinds of drugs coming into our country. this legislation would require the government accounting office, the g.a.o., to study and report to congress on how online marketplaces, including those on the dark web, are used as platforms to facilitate the
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financing of goods associated with drug trafficking or sex trafficking. they would study payment methods, including virtual currencies, peer-to-peer payment services that are also being used in drug and sex trafficking online. illicit funds have been transmitted online and how virtual currencies are reintegrated into the u.s. financial system. finally, mr. speaker, the study would have the participants of sex trafficking or drug trafficking trade online that benefit from the trade. although virtual currencies can be used for legal purchases, they have become a common financial payment for method for criminals. online marketplaces, including the dark web, have become prominent platform to buy, sell, advertise for illicit goods and services associated with sex trafficking and drug trafficking. according to the international labor organization in 2016, 4.8 million people in the world
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were victims of forced sexual exploitation, and in 2014, the global profit from commercial sexual exploitation was $99 billion. according to the u.s. treasury's 2015 national money laundering risk assessment, an estimated $64 billion is generated from u.s. drug trafficking operations. illegal fentanyl in the united states originally -- originates primarily from china and is readily available to purchase through online marketplaces. and certainly all of my colleagues have heard extensively over the last two weeks the stunning horrors of how fentanyl has entered our marketplace with one estimate that just last year alone enough came across our borders in this country to kill half the u.s. population. according to the d.e.a. in
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2017, the national drug threat assessment transnational criminal organizations are increasiny using virtual currencies. this bill will allow congress to fully understand the extent to how virtual currencies are being used to facilitate drug and sex trafficking. the bill will also study how virtual currencies can be used to detect and deter illicit activities and propose legislative solutions to fight these crimes. i reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman reserves. the gentleman from minnesota is recognized. mr. ellison: mr. speaker, i yield myself such time as i may consume, and i yield time to mr. vargas, who is a respected, active member of the financial services committee, such time as he wants. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. vargas: thank you very much, mr. speaker. thank you for those kind words. congressman ellison, i appreciate it. mr. speaker, i rise today to
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urge my colleagues to support finde, find. i want to thank chairman hensarling for his leadership and ranking member waters for their leadership -- her leadership and also for their support of this legislation. i'd also like to thank my good friend, mr. french hill, thank you for your kind words and thank you for your support of this bill. especially, i'd like to thank mr. rothfus for his leadership on the terrorism and illicit finance subcommittee and for generously agreeing to co-lead this commonsense, narrowly tailored legislation. as you may know, a virtual currency is a digital representation of value that can be digitally traded. since the creation of bitcoin, the first and most widely known example of cryptocurrency, thousands of crypto currencies have emerged and are designed to serve a variety of purchases. some forms of virtual currency provide a digital alternative
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to cash that lacks the oversight of a government or central bank and potentially offers greater anonymity than conventional payment systems. just as virtual currencies have been grown in the use of legitimate commerce, they have also become an increasingly popular financial payment method for criminals. virtual currencies have been and continue to be exploited to pay for goods and services associated with illicit, illegal sex and drug trafficking. these are two of the most detrimental and troubling illegal activities sold online. according to the d.e.a.'s 2017 national drug assessment, transnational criminal organizations are increasingly using virtual currencies due to their ease of use and anonymity they provide. while evidence points to the growth of virtual currencies, the true scope of the problem and potential solutions have not been fully established.
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according to the international abor organization in 2016, 4.8 million people in the world were victims of forced sexual exploitation and in 2014, the global profit from commercial 99 ual exploitation was $ billion. they are being used as a payment method for transnational drug trafficeers. as you may know all too well, the united states is struggling to combat the rising number of lives cut short by the tragic opioid use. as was stated earlier, in 2016 alone, the c.d.c. estimated there were 64,000 deaths in the u.s. related to drug overdose and the most severe increase in drug overdose were those associated with fentanyl and fentanyl analog. fentanyl is an extremely deadly opioid that is 50 to 100 times
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more potent than morphine. fentanyl is being ill listly manufactured in china and mexico, where most of the illegal fentanyl in the united states originating from china and it's readily available to purchase through the online marketplaces. if we were to craft effective leg raher to and legislative solutions to combat these transnational criminal organizations, we need to fully study and analyze thousand virtual currencies and online marketplaces are used to facilitate sex and drug trafficing to determine how best to eliminate their use. h.r. 6069, the fine trafficking act requires the -- find trafficking act requires the comp troll ore they have united states to, one, carry out a study of how virtual currencies and online marketplaces are used to facilitate sex and drug trafficking and two, make recommendations to congress on actions that would impede the
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use of viffer -- virtual currencies and online marketplaces in facilitating drugs and sex trafficking. it is my sincere hope that this is the first step in eliminating the use of virtual currencies by transnational organizations that facilitate drug and sex trafficking. i urge my colleagues to support the bill and again i thank both my colleagues for the kind words about the bill and the bipartisanship that we've had on this bill and i thank you and yield back, mr. speaker. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back. the gentleman from minnesota. mr. ellison: i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from arkansas. mr. hill: i thank the speaker. i want to thank the bipartisan work on the bill by mr. rothfus and my good friend, mr. vargas. he has the jesuit of a -- heart of a jesuit and the mind of ha a harvard lawyer. we are prepared to close and i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back.
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the question is will the house suspend the rules and pass the bill h.r. 6069 as amended. 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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the speaker pro tempore: for what purpose does the gentleman from alaska seek recognition? >> i move to suspend the rules nd pass h.r. 221 as amended? the speaker pro tempore: the clerk will report the title of the bill. the clerk: union calendar number 571, h.r. 221, a bill to re-authorize hydrographic services improvement act of 1998 and for other purposes. the speaker pro tempore: pursuant to the rule, the gentleman from alaska, mr. young, and the gentleman from maryland, mr. brown each will control 20 minutes. the chair recognizes the gentleman from alaska. mr. young: i ask unanimous consent that all members have five legislative days to revise and extend their remarks and include extraneous materials for the bill under consideration. the speaker pro tempore: without objection. mr. young: mr. speaker, i yield myself such time as i may consume. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. young: mr. chairman, mr. speaker, i rise today in support
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of my bill h.r. 221, hydrographic services improvement amendments act. i was the original co-sponsor with the chairman of the house natural resources committee when representative jim sexton of new jersey introduced the hydrographic service improvement acts of 1998. my legislation will re-authorize he acts through 2022 and allow ola -- noaa to conduct studies around the u.s. including around the arctic. alaska is what makes the united states an arctic nation my state has more coastline than any state in the country and don't know what's under the surface. we're seeing a significant increase in vessel traffic, resource development in arctic waters. hydrographic surveys are a critical part of the maritime safety and environmental efforts nationwide, they're especially important in the arctic.
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mr. speaker, there's 550,000 square nautical miles in the u.s. arctic exclusive economic zone, otherwise a 200 mile limit. it would take decades to survey even half of that space. noaa designated 35,000 miles as survey priority areas and estimates a range up to 25 years to survey those areas if resources remain at their current level. alaska waters are under survey. they were last surveyed in 1899. the river is the most effective route to deliver food and goods to coastal and inland villages in western alaska and the last on-the-ground surveys were completed the same year gold was discovered in noem. other areas around the nation have the same problem. this is an important piece of legislation if we're going to continue to utilize the ocean on shore and offshore. i urge the passage of legislation and reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the
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gentleman reserves. the gentleman from maryland. mr. broun: thank you, mr. speaker. i yield myself such time as i may consume. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. brun: this bill re-authorized the hydrographic services improvement act which funds navigation and safety services of noaa's office of coast survey which maintains over 1,000 charts and publications used by federal and state agencies, private organizations and the public. mr. broun: it is no small feat to do this for our nation's 95,000 miles of shoreline and 3.4 million square nautical miles of water. mr. brown: it is critical we ensure resources for graphing an charting. noaa vessels and data support a wide range of activities with significant environmental and economic safety impacts. as we face rapidly changing conditions, hydrographic services will become more important. this is particularly true in the arctic where we will even
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tchally see almost entirely ice-free summers. it is not a matter of if, but when and how soon. with that comes an entirely new sea scape for maritime commerce and transport, defense, and natural resources. i want to commend my colleague, mr. young, for his hard work and i encourage adoption of this bill. with that, i reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman reserves. the gentleman from alaska. mr. young: mr. speaker, i have no further speakers at this time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields. the gentleman from maryland. mr. brown: i yield. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back. mr. young: i yield back. i have no further speakers and i 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. 221 as amended. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. in the opinioner of the chair, 2/3 being in the affirmative, the rules are suspended, the bill is passed, and without
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objection the motion to reconsider is laid on the table. for what purpose does the gentleman from utah seek recognition? mr. bishop: i move to suspend the rules and pass h.r. 5751 as amended sproism the clerk will report the title. the clerk: h.r. 5751, a bill to redesignate the golden spike national historic site and to eestablish the transcontinental railroad network. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from utah, mr. bishop, and the gentleman from maryland, mr. brown, each will control 20 minutes. mr. bishop: i ask unanimous consent that all members have five legislative days to revise and extend their remarks and include extraneous thornlse bill under consideration. the speaker pro tempore: without objection. mr. bishop: and i yield myself such time as i may consume. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized.
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mr. bishop: thank you. i don't object to it either. may 10, 1869 is one of the most significant date we was in american history because that's the day when a congressionally andated provision to unite the two continents on this ocean together came into being and the final nail that was the last spike that was put into this effort that was originated by congress and actually oddly enough congress had to get them to stop going at different directions and come together at one point took place in prom oner to summit in my state of utah , in my district, about 30 miles from where i live. s that prominent symbol of the most significant achievement we did in the 19th century and it is for transportation as significant as landing a man on the moon would be in the 20th century. the ability of having the rail system there meant some of my ancestors who had to walk every step across the plains, taking months to get to utah, could now
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do it in seven days on the new train that was going through there. so this is one of those things that has the support of the national park service who wants to make sure that some of the more -- less visual parks are given the quality attention that they deserve to make them something that is important for the future history of this country. so it's not just going to be a park. this is going to be a historic park. and it's going to be part of the transcontinental railroad network that will take all sorts of other activities that deal with transportation within the area, allow them to make them more public, and allow people to expand -- to spend several days visiting different areas and it is also important since ironically within a few miles of this location is also the site where most of the motors made for out every space travel were also built at the same time. so this can also be a hub of truly educational value about
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transportation in both the 19th century as well as the 20th century. it can also be the opportunity of showing the -- of thing the store roif the thousands, literally thousands of immigrants who helped build the system going both ways in both directions. and it establishes a process so that challenge that was been long standing with neighboring land owners have been resolved in an easy, simple way not only now but in the future. so with that i urge my colleagues to support this bill which will be -- which will make the golden spike in national -- a national historic park in time for the 150th birthday which will be next may 10 of 2019. with that, i reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman reserves. the gentleman from maryland. mr. brown: thank you, mr. speaker. i yield myself such time as i may consume. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. brown: h.r. 5751
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redesignated the golden spike national historic site as the golden spike national historical park and directs the secretary of the interior to establish a program known as the transcontinental railroad network within the national park service. on may 10, 1869, a historically very, very significant day in the history of our country, the atlantic and pacific coasts were linked for the first time now nation's history when the 1,912 system of hand built tracks was completed in promonitory, utah. this national historic park designation is a fitting tribute that acknowledges the significance of this event. the bill will also help the national park service educate the public about the history, construction, and legacy of the transcontinental railroad without additional funds. i would like to thank the chairman for h efforts to preserve an important part of our history. this is a good bill. i urge my colleagues to support
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its passage. with that, mr. speaker, i yield back and reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields. reserves. the gentleman is recognized. mr. bishop: i reserve, i'm ready to quit. mr. brown: i yield back all my time. mr. bishop: in conclusion, i vine -- i invite all of you out next may 10 to this site, it'll be a party you won't forget. with that, i urge adoption and yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the question is, will the house suspend the rules and pass the bill h.r. 5751 as amended? those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair, 2/3 having responded in the affirmative, the rules are the bill is passed, and without objection the motion to reconsider is laid on the table. for what purpose does the gentleman from utah seek recognition? mr. bishop: i move to suspend the rules and pass h.r. 805.
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the speaker pro tempore: the clerk will report the title of the bill. the clerk: union calendar number 440, h.r. 805, a bill to authorize the conveyance of and remove the reversionary interests of the united states in certain lands in the city of tulare, california. the speaker pro tempore: pursuant to the rule, the gentleman from utah, mr. bishop, and the gentleman from maryland, mr. brown, will each control 20 minutes. the chair recognizes the gentleman from utah. mr. bishop: i ask unanimous consent that all members may 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. bishop: mr. speaker, i yield as much time as he may consume to the sponsor of this bill, the gentleman from california, mr. nunes. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from california is recognized. mr. nunes: i want to thank the chair and the ranking member for allowing this bill to come up today. i rise in support of h.r. 805, the tulare youth recreation and women's history enhancement act. it removes a revisionary interest of two parcels of interest in tulare, california.
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this would allow the city to purchase this land from the union pacific railroad which received the land from the federal government by right of way in the 19th century. one parcel has long been home to a historic women's clubhouse which has served as an important community center for more than 100 years. the clubhouse is in need of critical repairs but the city of tulare has been reluctant to make repairs without clear title to the land. if the bill was enacted the city would make needed repairs to this historical landmark, preserving it for generations to come. the second is home to the rotary skate park which is a recreational park used by young and old residents alike. both of these community locations are extremely important to people of the san joaquin valley and this bill will ensure the continued use for many years to come. i want to thank the chair and ranking member for their support and urge my colleagues to support this bill. i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman reserves. the gentleman from maryland is recognized. mr. brown: thank you, mr.
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speaker. i yield myself such time as i may consume. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. brown: h.r. 805 releases -- revisionaryary reversionary lands in tulare, california. it is a skate park and women's clubhouse owned by the city. they want to make improvements but unable to secure financing without clean and free titles to the property. in the 19th century, congress granted the land to southern pacific railroad. the predecessor of union pacific, for use as a railroad right of way. congress subsequently authorized the railroad to lease the land to tulare for other public purposes. however, the land remains encunbered with a reversionary interest. congress passed the law in 1998 to released the interest on 12 parcels in tulare.
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h.r. 805 deals with two additional parcels, allowing union pacific to sell the land to tulare and clear the way for land improvements. the 1998 law was the first time congress authorized the release of a reversionary interest for redevelopment purposes. at the time, the railroad had already sold the land to tulare even though it belonged to taxpayers and congress had to intervene to remedy the situation. unlike the situation in 1998, the two parcels affected by this bill have not been sold and under normal circumstances the federal government, not union pacific, should receive payment for the parcels if they are no longer used as originally intended by congress. however, the history of congressional involvement in tulare justifies an exception to this standard. due to these circumstances, i am happy to support this bill, and i urge my colleagues to support its adoption. with that, mr. speaker, i reserve the balance of my time.
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the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman reserves. the gentleman from utah. i bishop: yeah, i wish to yield myself such time as i may consume. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. bishop: this have a significant bill -- it's not a significant bill. we are talking about a couple of acres of property that used to be owned by the federal government, had no purpose and use for it. so they gave it up. instead, congress decided to include a reversionary clause with this stuff so if they wanted to do something with these two acres of property they would have to come crawling back to us asking for our permission to do it which is silly. it is ridiculous we go through this process time after time after time. the federal government didn't need this land originally. they still don't need it. but they still have that particular clause attached to it. this land needs to be given over to the city who uses it so they can make improvements on the facilities that have been used since the 1800's. we have to go through an actual
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law to do this is a silly practice we maintain here in congress. it should not be done. this is the perfect example of why the reversionary clauses are not needed. if you really care about people, put a clause in there that says, if they want to change the practice, it has to be for the public interest and public good. that would be logical. what we have to do now is illogical. it has to be done for the people who live there and for these properties, but it is silly we have to go through this process. i'll reserve. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman reserves. the gentleman from maryland. mr. brown: thank you, mr. chairman. mr. speaker, i think i agree. nobody -- i think no member in congress enjoys an unnecessary crawlback, but i think the majority of members of congress recognize our duty to protect the public interest. and with that, again, we resoundly support what is a very, very good bill. i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields. the gentleman from utah. mr. bishop: i urge my colleagues to adopt this bill
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-- not as amended -- this bill, and i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields. the question is will the house suspend the rules and pass the bill h.r. 805. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair, 2/3 having responded in the firmative, 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 utah seek recognition? mr. bishop: i move to suspend the rules and pass h.r. 857 as amended. the speaker pro tempore: the clerk will report the title of the bill. the clerk: h.r. 857, a bill to provide for conservation and enhanced recreation activities in the california desert conservation area, and for other purposes. the speaker pro tempore: pursuant to the rule, the gentleman from utah, mr. bishop, and the gentleman from maryland, mr. brown, each will control 20 minutes. the chair recognizes the gentleman from utah. mr. bishop: i ask unanimous
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consent that all members may 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. bishop: and with that i wish to yield to the chairman -- not to the chairman -- to the member from california whose bill we are discussing -- i am the chairman -- the bill we are discussing who came up with the process of involving his community to do this transfer the right of way. i yield to mr. cook of california. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from california is recognized. mr. cook: thank you, mr. speaker. and thank you, chairman bishop, for yielding your time. i would like to take a few minutes to talk about my bill, h.r. 857, the california off-road he recreational and con-- recreational and conservation act. california has been a land of many uses. the local economies depend on a combination of revenue from recreational offhighway vehicle use, known at o.h.v., mining and tourism to our stunning
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desert parts and wilderness areas. balancing these economic drivers is key to aligning federal land use policies. this bill is the product of years of outreach to local governments, tribes, offhighway vehicles users, conservation groups, chambers of commerce, miners, and other stakeholders. h.r. 857 will establish five offhighway vehicle recreational areas in the california desert. as well as expand an existing o.h.v. area. three of these o.h.v. areas would include expansion study areas. in total, these six o.h.v. areas cover roughly 300,000 acres. this bill creates additional protections for o.h.v. users and ensures that these areas cannot be closed administratively. by creating the nation's first
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system of offhighway vehicle recreation areas will ensure that o.h.v. activity is conducted in appropriate locations, protecting other parts of the desert. the desert protection act of 1994 left the mohave desert with hundreds of thousands of acres of wilderness study areas. in the decades since then, these areas have been reviewed extensively for their suitability as wilderness. my bill would designate some of these areas as wilderness. primarily within these wilderness study areas and death valley national park, while releasing other areas were wilderness studies that were found to be unsuitable for wilderness designation. additionally, my bill would designate approximately 18,000 acres of existing federal land as the alabama hills national
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scenic area. this would restrict large-scale projects such as renewable energy generation while preserving all existing recreational and commercial use of alabama hills, activities such as filming, hiking, mountain biking, rock climbing, hunting, fishing, and authorized motor vehicle use will be unaffected. additionally, recreational mineral prospecting, i.e., rock climbing -- excuse me -- rock hounding would continue. this portion of h.r. 857 passed the house as a stand-alone bill in the last congress. with unanimous support before stalling in the senate. the california off-road recreation and conservation act has the support of san bernardino and the metropolitan water district of southern
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california, local cities, virtually every major off-road vehicle group, environmental groups such as california wilderness coalition and the pew charitable trust, local chambers of commerce, and the lone pine she showny reservation. -- sheshoni reservation. this bill is a product of use yeers of grassroots work and represents a consensus on how to manage our public lands in the california desert. thank you and i strongly encourage my colleagues to support this. i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from maryland is recognized. mr. brown: thank you, mr. speaker. i yield myself such time as i may consume. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. brown: h.r. 857 is a comprehensive package of land designations designed to increase conservation efforts and recreation access throughout the california
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desert. the bill adds approximately 329,370 acres to the national wilderness preservation system, expands three units of the national park system, creates new areas set aside for offhighway recreation and establishes the alabama hills national scenic area. representative cook's bill builds upon the success of the california desert protection act and the recent monument designations by president obama to provide lasting protections and ensure ongoing recreational access throughout the region. this bill closely mirrors the senate companion introduced by senator feinstein that's moving its way through the legislative process in the senate. hopefully that means we can deliver a version of this bill to the president's desk to provide a lasting conservation solution for a substantial portion of the california desert. mr. speaker, i urge adoption of this bill and reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman reserves. the gentleman from utah is recognized. mr. bishop: mr. speaker, before
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i yield myself such time as i may consume, i ask unanimous consent to insert background material for this particular bill into the record. e eaker pro tempore: without objection. mr. bishop: thank you. mr. bishop: what representative cook has done is taking an important issue and doing it the right way by collaboration and outreach with local people who live in those areas on what they want to do with the public land of the public land does not necessarily mean only federal land. public land can also be state, it can be county, all sorts of entities' land, but the value of that land, whether it's federal, state or county or municipality is does it help the people in that particular area. that's what mr. cook has done in this particular piece of legislation, is talk to to them and find a way in which the land can be used to help people. yes, he released some wilderness
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study areas that were designated unsuitable for a wilderness designation but then created three times that number of acreage in new wilderness designations as well as scenic refer designations and because land is needed for recreational purposes, he puts protections for people who are using this land, h.o.v. users that ensures these areas will not be closed administratively. and if that opportunity will not be taken away at a whim. so what he has dorn is work very hard with the local people to find local people's needs and desires for their local land and provides them an opportunity that will provide not only economic benefits for a few, but also recreational benefits for many as well as creating new wilderness designations at the same time. this is a win-win for everyone involved.
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and i commend him for his hard work in coming up with this. this is the way land designations should be used. with that, i reserve. but i have no more speakers. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman reserves the balance of his time. the gentleman from maryland. mr. brown: i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. the gentleman from utah. mr. bishop: i urge my colleagues to adopt this bill. the speaker pro tempore: the question is will the house suspend the rules and pass the bill h.r. 587 as amended. 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 utah seek recognition? mr. bishop: i move to suspend the rules and pass h.r. 3392 as amended. the speaker pro tempore: the clerk will report the title of the bill. the clerk: union calendar number 597, h.r. 3392, a bill to provide for stability of title to certain land in the state of
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louisiana and for other purposes. the speaker pro tempore: pursuant to the rule, squasm utah, mr. bishop, and the gentleman from maryland, mr. brown, each will control 20 minutes. the chair recognizes the gentleman from utah. mr. bishop: i ask unanimous consent that all members may 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. bishop: i yield such time as he may consume to the sponsor of this piece of legislation, the gentleman from louisiana, mr. johnson. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from louisiana. mr. johnson: i want to thank chairman bishop for his continued support for the land title stability act. this rights a decades' wrong. there was a resurvey around lake bistineau, when the federal government did it, it preempted the rights of legal owners. it is hard to imagine when we
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wake up and told that the land our families opened is no longer ours. to learn that the federal government has staked claim to our homes, the place where we are raising our own families and the land we worked for decades. all of it gone without an opportunity to contest it. that's what happened here. the government's failure to notify land owners and its claim to the land for nearly 50 years is shameful. this error has led to unness uncertainty regarding who owns the land and we believe the answer is very clear. the property rightfully belongs to the people of louisiana who have owned these lands. my bill provides certainty and claste by directing the secretary of the interior to issue a disclaimer of interest on the disputed acres and restore land title ownership to the families who have worked and owned these lands. i hope my colleagues on both
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sides of the aisle will support this bill and support the folks in my district who had their land taken from them without due process. i urge passage of the bill. nd i yield back. mr. brown: i yield myself such time as i may consume. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. brown: h.r. 33 2 requires the bureau of land management to disclaim interest in 230 acres of land in northern louisiana. the land at issue was originally surveyed in 1842, transferred to the levy district in 1892 and conveyed to private owners in 1904. b.l.m. conducted a resurvey a in 1967 realizing that certain lands were omitted from previous federal surveys. the resurvey puts more than 200 acres of land previously thought to have belonged to louisiana.
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until recently, the results of this resurvey were ignored or forgotten and there are several homeowners with clouded titles and some confusion concerning the ownership of mineral rights. they are working to authorize conveyance under the appropriate of color of title act. it authorizes the b.l.m. to convey public land that have been acquired by peaceful adverse possession often caused by historical surveying anomalies. however, the color of title act is not authorized to transfer of mineral rights owned by the united states, which is why this bill is necessary. to be clear, under most circumstances, we would not support legislation to transfer federal mineral rights without fair compensation to the american taxpayer, but this is a very unusual and special case. over 40 years have passed since
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b.l.m. attempted to enforce federal ownership of this land. this lack of clarity and communication is unacceptable. for that reason, i support this bill and urge its adoption. thank you. i yield back and reserve. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman reserves the balance of his time. the gentleman from utah. mr. bishop: let me yield myself time as well. this particular bill is not the first time we have talked about this on the floor. it is long overdue. it is about 100 years long overdue with only a handful of homeowners having their title for which they have lived, bought and sold and lived for decades, questioning whether they actually have the title to it or not. it's unfair, and it was wrong. it was wrong of b.l.m. and right for congress to step in and solve this problem to bring certainty to an issue that never should have been an issue in the very first place. and this harms the status quo
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and harms people. that is not our position and not what we should be doing. i appreciate the minority working with us on this particular bill very well because it is an important one to try and solve this particular issue so we don't come back again. i would urge my colleagues to support this. i reserve. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman reserves the balance of his time. the gentleman from maryland. mr. brown: i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. the gentleman from utah. mr. bishop: thank you, mr. johnson, for this particular bill that is solving a problem that never should have been there in his district. i urge my colleagues to adopt this bill and i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. the question is will the house suspend the rules and pass bill h.r. 3392 as amended. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair, 2/3 being in the affirmative -- -- the rules are suspended and the bill is passed and without
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objection, the motion to reconsider is laid on the table. for what purpose does the gentleman from utah seek recognition? mr. bishop: i move to suspend the rules and pass h.r. 1791 as amended. the speaker pro tempore: the clerk will report the title of the bill. the clerk: h.r. 1791, a bill to establish the mountains of the green way heritage area in the state of washington and for other purposes. the speaker pro tempore: pursuant to the rule, the gentleman from utah, mr. bishop and the gentleman from maryland, mr. brown each will control 20 minutes. mr. bishop: i ask unanimous consent that all members may have five legislative days to include their remarks on the bill under consideration. i'm pleased to the sponsor of this piece of legislation, who is establishing a herltage area but doing it the right way, mr. reichert of washington. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from washington is recognized. mr. reichert: i want to thank the chairman and ranking member
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and the entire committee for their support of this legislation that is so critical and important for the state of washington, especially those people that live in the 8th district of washington state and i am especially thankful for mr. bishop's cooperation and for his advice on language to be added to the bill to make it that much better, especially as it relates to protecting property rights of individuals within the designated heritage area. so, mr. speaker, i am proud to speak today in support of h.r. 1791, mountains to sound greenway national heritage. is is a bipartisan bill that as may have been stated was favorably out of the house natural resources committee earlier this month. this legislation will designate
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the mountains to sound greenway in washington state as a national heritage area. his greenway spans 1.5 million acres traveling interstate 90 which crosses the country and crosses the cascade mountains to ellinsburg washington. it is a spectacular landscape which has small towns, working farms, lush forests and rugged mountains along side one of the largest and fastest growing metro areas in the county and in the state, for that matter. efforts to protect this area -- and it's amazing views, have made this a popular, local, and international tourist destination where people hunt, fish, camp, hike, bike and camp. the mountains to sound greenway trust and its public-private membership have maintained a
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vibrant and diverse economic economy while conserving the environment and protecting private property. the trust conducts extensive public meetings. there were 145 meetings held with comments from over 1,000 individuals. in those discussions, the conclusion was reached that the green way was a special place deserving of national recognition. my bill does that. national recognition of this landscape's unique historical and natural value will promote coordination and encourage local engagement and draw visitors to small towns supporting economic growth. based on the feedback we have received over the years, i have strengthened my legislation to include the important protections needed to protect individual rights, property rights of private owners, tribal communities, also concerned about their rights.
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they were also involved in this process in protecting the rights of their indian nation. and this is what my bill does not do. it does not force private property owners to participe in any activity or provide public access. it does not affect land use planning. it does not alter, modify or extinctish treaty rights or limit the authority of the state to manage fish and wildlife including hunting and fishing regulations. the result is a balanced bill that enjoys broad public support and i'm proud to say this support continues to grow. ver 6,000 and counting businesses, agencies and organizations support the mountains to sound greenway national heritage. i tharpg my colleague from washington state, mr. smith, who i have worked with over the years to get this bill to where it is today and it has been years.
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i would like to thank former senator gordon and councilman raymond dunn who have been long time supporters for their tireless efforts to make this a reality. in addition, i thank again, chairman bishop and ranking member grijalva and their committee staff in bringing this important legislation to the committee and to the floor. i urge my colleagues to join me in supporting this legislation. i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman reserves the balance of his time. the gentleman from maryland. mr. brown: i'm happy to support this bill and i urge my colleagues to urge its adoption. and i yield to mr. smith from washington state. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. smith: i'm pleased to rise in the mountains to sound greenway national heritage designation. this is a project that has been completely collaborative throughout the region and it is a great example of how to get
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things done. various government officials working with the private sector all with the same goal and that is to preserve open spaces in the pugeet sound area. and this is a very difficult thing to do. businesses are popping up all over the place. and the other thing is the ability to get outdoors, to fish, hunt and hike and basically enjoy the beauty of the pacific northwest and this group came together. and it wasn't done by government fiat but working with private land owners and tribes to say we have a mutual interest in preserving open spaces for the better enjoyment of all of us and that's how this was born. and this a successful collaborative effort and i'm pleased to have the federal government put its stamp on it as a national heritage area.
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it will help the process moving forward they continue to make sure that they preserve these open spaces for the people of the puget sound. congressman reichert has been working on this for a number of years and true bipartisan effort and people ask me all the time, don't you guys work together on anything? referring to democrats and republicans. and i have been pleased to work with dave for 14 years. i worked with him before when he was the king county sheriff. but a great working ship. whenever people ask me that relationship, i'm pleased to know i have congressman reichert. dave and i work on a whole bunch of different things and have over the years and this is one of the most important in his final year in congress. i think it's very appropriate we get this to the finish line and passed into law and signed by the president. this is a fine example when we
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work together with all interested parties coming together for mutual benefit. maintaining open spaces in the region is incredibly important. not easy. this project is a reflection of how you can get it done and i support this legislation. and i thank congressman reichert for his leadership and partnership. great working together with him in the interests of our community. with that, i yield back. . the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back. the gentleman from utah. mr. bishop: i yield myself such time as i may consume. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. bishop: thank you, mr. speaker. it's often the situation where heritage areas which were originally established to have some mechanism local people can get together to actually advertise their particular area usually for tourism interest or historical preservation interests. and it deevolved in time through an issue which people found a way using the federal
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government as a deep pocket to keep getting more money all the time back to those particular areas even though it's supposed to be a one-time situation. we found other heritage areas found a way which special interest groups got control of these areas and were starting to dictate local government entities. each of those problems that's been a significant problem in other heritage areas was eliminated by mr. reichert in his particular piece of legislation. that's why i said he did it the right way, with the right instincts, the right purposes, the right illustrations especially protecting private property rights and native american rights. this is one of the few heritage areas which i am happy to support because it's organized the proper way to solve problems, not just find a cheap and easy way to get money back in the area. so he's commended for his integrity and the way he's orchestrated that. with that, mr. speaker, i yield
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back the balance of my time. -- reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman reserves. the gentleman from maryland. mr. brown: i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from maryland -- the gentleman from utah, excuse me. mr. bishop: we are a much bigger state than maryland. with that, mr. speaker, i urge adoption of the piece of this legislation and i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields. the question is will the house suspend the rules and pass the bill h.r. 1791, as amended. 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. for what purpose does the gentleman from utah seek recognition? mr. bishop: i ask unanimous consent to suspend the rules and pass h.r. 4257, as amended. the clerk: toorptilt -- the speaker pro tempore: the clerk will report the title of
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the bill. , a bill to .r. 4257 maximize land management efficiencies, promote land conservation, generate education funding, and for other purposes. the speaker pro tempore: pursuant to the rule, the gentleman from bishop, and the gentleman from maryland, mr. brown, will each control 20 minutes. the chair recognizes the gentleman from utah. mr. bishop: thank you, mr. speaker. i yield to mr. stewart for as much time as he may consume. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. stewart: i want to thank the chairman. i think everyone knows this, much land in the western states is controlled by, who? the federal government. my own home state of utah, about 2/3 of the land is owned and controlled by the federal government. and because states can't tax federal land, it means 2/3 of
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the land in utah cannot be tacksd. this, as you can imagine, presents challenges for western states. when they are trying to raise funds for things like public education. but recognizing this channeling, congress made sizeable land grants to the western states but it was based on the condition that granted lands be held in trust and used to generate revenue for education and other worthy causes. sings the time land grants were made, -- since the time land grants were made, much were protected. this is them being encapsulated in federally protected land, creating conflict that's enormous, just difficult to overcome. once again, the end result you have reduced revenues to our children in utah and the challenge we have in finding sufficient revenue to educate them. and it's clearly in the best interest of states and the federal government to transfer ownership to some of these trust lands to the federal
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government in exchange for less than revenue generating lands transferred to the states. this truly is bipartisan, a win-win, not difficult to see that everyone's better off by this. land exchanges between state and the federal government have become very expensive and time consuming. that is why my bill, advancing conservation in education, creates a streamlined mechanism of the land transfer between the states and the federal government. again, this bill is a win-win and proves to people on all sides we can come together and we can solve some these very complex land issues. so again, i want to thank my colleague from colorado, mr. polis, for working with me on this piece of legislation. i want to thank the wilderness society and others that worked so hard to make this bill possible. if you are a conservationist, if you are an educator, if you're a legislator on both sides of the aisle, this is something that most of us agree this is helpful and positive
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for the federal government and also for the children in utah. thank you, then, mr. speaker. with that i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman reserves. the gentleman from maryland. mr. brown: thank you, mr. speaker. i yield myself such time as i may consume. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. brown: mr. speaker, h.r. 4257 creates a process to expedite land exchanges between the federal government and state land grant agencies. currently, the primary method of eliminating state trust lands from conservation areas has been through legislative land exchanges which can be time consuming and complicated. this bipartisan bill, introduced by representatives stewart and polis, offers a new way to speed up the process of removing state lands from federal conservation areas. h.r. 4257 could incentivize state land agencies to be good partners and supporters of additional conservation legislation by removing an important barrier to new conservation designations and
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improving the management of existing conservation areas. i support passage of this bill and reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman reserves. the gentleman from utah. mr. bishop: mr. speaker, i ask unanimous consent to add some additional background that is necessary for this particular bill into the record. the speaker pro tempore: without objection. mr. bishop: let me also say, as a former teacher and a future teacher, i appreciate mr. stewart actually working on this piece of legislation that goes to help education in the state of utah. no one else is doing that. i will reserve but we have no further speakers. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman reserves. the gentleman from maryland. mr. brown: i yield back the balance of my time, mr. speaker. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields. the gentleman from utah. mr. bishop: i urge yes and yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields. the question is will the house suspend the rules and pass the bill h.r. 4257, as amended. the speaker pro tempore: those in favor say aye.
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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. for what purpose does the gentleman from tennessee seek recognition? mr. roe: mr. speaker, i move to suspend the rules and pass h.r. 299, as amended. the speaker pro tempore: the clerk will report the title of the bill. the clerk: h.r. 299, a bill to amend title 38, united states code, to clarify presumptions relating to the exposure of certain veterans who served in the vicinity of the republic of vietnam and for other purposes. the speaker pro tempore:
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pursuant to the rule, the gentleman from tennessee, mr. roe, and the gentleman from california, mr. takano, each will control 20 minutes. the chair recognizes the gentleman from tennessee. mr. roe: thank you, mr. speaker. i ask unanimous consent that all members may have five legislative days to revise and insert heir remarks and extraneous material. the speaker pro tempore: without objection. mr. roe: mr. speaker, i yield myself such time as i may consume. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. roe: thank you, mr. speaker. i rise today in support of h.r. 299, the blue water navy vietnam veterans act of 2018, which was introduced by representative valadao of california. h.r. 299, as amended, would finally extend the presumption of exposure to agent orange to blue water navy veterans. i'm grateful for mr. valadao for introducing this long overdue bill. i'd also like to thank my colleagues on the house committee on veterans' affairs for working with us on a bipartisan manner to find an acceptable way to pay for this bill. as many of you know, agent orange was used in vietnam to
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defoaliate areas in the jungle where they would ambush our troops. unfortunately, many vietnam veterans developed diseases as a result of their exposure to agent orange. currently, v.a. only extends the presumption of exposure to agent orange to vietnam veterans who actually set foot in vietnam or served in the inland waterways of the brown water navy, we call it. blue water navy veterans who served off-shore of vietnam precks clueded from the presumption -- were excluded from the presumption. v.a. denies these benefits because they claim there is not enough scientific information where blue water navy veterans came in contact with herbicides to cause disease. mr. speaker, i read the science and unfortunately we will never be able to prove whether blue water navy veterans were harmed by herbicides but i said this before and i'll say it again, too many years have passed, over four decades in this case, to meaningfully determine the science, the presumption should be heavily in favor of the
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veteran. moreover, i am pleased that the bill would help veterans who may have been harmed by exposure to herbicides while serving in areas outside the republic of vietnam. h.r. 299, as amended, encorporates a proposal authored by representative tom macarthur, which would extend the presumption of veterans who served in or near the demillerized zone beginning september 1, 1967, which is the month when the military began testing herbicides in that area. the end day presumption period would remain the same, august 31, 1971. this legislation would also require v.a. to identify u.s. military bases located in thailand where agent orange was used -- when it was used. additionally, this bill includes a proposal authoreded by representative westerman of arkansas which would require v.a. to provide benefits to children who are born with spina bifida if one or more
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parents were exposed to agent orange while serving in thailand just as v.a. does with spina bifida if they served in vietnam or the d.m.z. the manager's amendment makes technical changes to make sure all naval veterans who served within 12 miles off-shore of vietnam during the war are eligible for the presumption. the manager's amendment also makes technical changes to clarify the intent of this bill, including ensuring surviving spouses are eligible for retroactive benefits and authorizing v.a. to start paying benefits before the final regulations are issued. h.r. 299, as amended, would include several amendments to e v.a. home loan program including the changes of home appraisals. expansion of the conforming loan limit which would allow veterans to use their earned v.a. loan benefits in more
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expensive areas if they qualify. this provision was introduced by representative zeldin. extension of the waiver of home loan funding fees to recipients of the purple heart who are still serving on active duty, this provision was introduced by representative herrera beutler, and increasing in home loan funding fees for nondisabled veterans to offset the cost of this bill. i want to thank all of our v.s.o. partners for their support and helping us craft a bill that finally addresses the plight of blue water navy veterans. specifically, i want to thank the veterans of foreign wars of the united states, the disabled american veterans, the american legion, the vietnam veterans of america, the fleet reserve association, the military order of the purple heart, the paralyzed veterans of america, the blue water navy vietnam association, military veterans advocacy and the military officers association of america. i urge my colleagues to support h.r. 299, as amended, and i
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reserve the balance of my time. . the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from california. mr. takano: i yield myself such time as i may consume. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. takano: i rise in supports of h.r. 299 as amended, the blue water navy vietnam veterans act. it has taken years of dedicated advocacy and bipartisan to get us here today. and i would like to recognize ranking member walz, who could not be here today, but was a driving force behind this legislation. h.r. 299 is an important step toward recktive eying a long standing injustice to veterans who were made sick by exposure to agent orange in vietnam. passage of this legislation will extend eligibility to 90,000 veterans who served in vietnam
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and may have been exposed to this dangerous chemical. some thought this day would never come for the blue water navy veterans. finding over a billion in the federal budget is not an easy task, but many people even said it was impossible. i thank the chairman for sitting down with the veteran service organizations, working with staff and agreeing to find an alternative funding source to right this wrong. i'm proud this committee was able to once again reach a bipartisan agreement to move forward with legislation that does what's right for our nation's veterans. while there was disagreement about the pay-for in the past, the solution in this bill is fair. it does not cut benefits for one group of veterans to pay for the benefits of others. it requires all veterans whether they served on active duty in
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the reserves or as guards men and women to pay for the same v.a. home loan funding fee. with the move to an operational reserve, reservists, guards men and women are deploying with active duty service members. it is fair for v.a. to charge the same way across the board. it allows the v.a. to guarantee home loans to current and future service members and veterans. disabled veterans are exempt from paying the fee. we were able to do this by working together. and i thank chairman roe for identifying the solution. a special measure of credit must go to the vietnam veterans of america for their advocacy for blue water veterans. because of these efforts, it is my hope that never again will another group of veterans face
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the same problems that they did. i would also like to add before we take this historic vote, we must remember toxic exposures continue to occur. since 9/11, service members have een exposed to burn pits and chemicals, which are causing serious health serious implications and our service members have been exposed to atomic radiation and those struggling with gulf war illnesses. the risks should be tracked, understood and mitigated. the service member must receive timely health care and disbuilt compensation if exposure causes adverse health conditions and disease. we must build a system that proactively identifies and investigates diagnosis, treats and heals toxic exposures.
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and one that also holds the department of defense accountable. but my feeling is that if we are using presumptions, it means that we are already losing the battle. it means we haven't documented who was exposed to what? so we are just going to assume that everyone was exposed. h.r. 299 makes other important reforms including adjusting the in of the presumption and the korean d.m.z. so that those become eligible. it directs the secretary to reach out to veterans who have been previously been denied to inform them of the new law and how to file a new claim. the bill requires that v.a. use language that is easily understood. h.r. 299 also expands the esumption for agent orange
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exposure to children born in thailand. lastly, the bill mandates that v.a. report to congress after 180 days on the enactment of the study conducted on gulf war veterans who are suffering from gulf war illness. qum proud that we are fixing this broken promise to the blue water veterans today but there are many others in the making and we need to address them as soon as possible. i reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman reserves the balance of his time. the gentleman from tennessee is recognized. mr. roe: i appreciate the kind words from my friend. i would now like to yield three minutes to congressman valadao who has pursued this and this issue has been a problem for decades and finally tonight on the house side, we are going to come to a conclusion.
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i yield three minutes to the lead sponsor of this bill. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized for three minutes. mr. valadao: thank you, chairman roe. i rise today to support my legislation, the blue water navy veterans act. the united states deployed troops to vietnam to protect our national security interests abroad. over the course of 20 years, american troops fought side by side with vietnamese forces. 58,000 american soldiers lost their lives during the conflict. in the aftermath of the war, the united states government linchinged chemicals in agent orange to many harmful medical conditions affecting those who served in or around vietnam. while the federal government has provided for those who served on vietnam soil, those who served in the seas of the republic of vietnam lack the compensation and treatment they deserve.
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despite unden ible evidence that agent orange contaminated ship board systems and countless studies show the connection of agent orange to disease among ship board veterans, the death of veteran affairs denies claims from blue water navy vietnam veterans. they were willing to pay the ultimate price for their country. providing adequate medical care to those who survived is the least we can do. my bill, h.r. 299 plus water navy veterans act would restore the presumption of service connection to the blue water navy veterans to ensure they receive the proper treatment. since i was elected, i have fought to ensure our veterans have proper med will care -- medical care. however passage of this bill
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would not be possible without susey who raised awareness. chairman phil roe and the veteran comm staittee for their support and dedication of thousands of americans who called their representatives urging they co-sponsor this legislation. every day, thousands of brave veterans who served in vietnam fight the health effects of agent orange. many are in pain and suffering. it is far past time we give them the comfort and care they deserve. i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman reserves the balance of his time. the gentleman from california. mr. takano: mr. speaker, i would like to yield three minutes to my good friend and colleague, the gentleman from connecticut, who has been with this issue sings four congresses ago. he is one of the original first democratic co-sponsor on the current bill before us. i yield to him three minutes of
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time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized for three minutes. >> i want to thank mr. takano for yielding to bring this important milestone for vietnam veterans to the floor today. mr. courtney: and to the chairman in the markup process and the negotiations with the different members and your colleague, mr. walz, was a partner through that process. mr. valadao is the lead sponsor as well. this is a real team effort. there were 330 co-sponsors to this bill, which there is not a lot of those you can say that about. but obviously, there were impediments we had to work our way through. this is real hard work and legislating that brought this mere to the floor. back in 2001, the v.a. ruled against a navy veteran, mr. jonathan haas who served off the
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coast of vietnam in his attempt to get agent orange benefits using the presumption that extended to folks who served on the ground forces. the foot on the ground rule was because used by the v.a. to deny his claim and it has acted as an obstacle ever since. in the 112th congress a blue water veterans act was introduced and didn't pass. in the 113th congress, similar bill was introduced in 2013 and it didn't pass. and again in the last congress, 114th, we had another measure but it didn't pass. but today we are here for the use a me ever to technical rule that defies common sense that will open a path for folks who served in the u.s. navy to make sure they get equal treatment in terms of getting the care they need and frankly they earned.
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so again, if you look at some of the other countries that have dealt with this issue, like the royal navy of australia, they of our and they were one great allies have a higher insidens of cancer. it is high time we move forward with this measure with the grassroots support across the country and a retired petty officer who served in the u.s. navy is watching like a hawk with this measure. also s colleagues are watching. this can give some measure of confidence that the system listened to the he can ternl pressure that has built up since 2001 to restore justice in the v.a. system to make sure that those who served on the seas are treated the same way who served on the ground. . urge passage of this
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and i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman reserves the balance of his time. the gentleman from tennessee. mr. roe: i would like to yield one minute to the vice chair of the committee and one of the most ardent supporters, mr. bilirakis of florida. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. bilirakis: i rise today in strong support of h.r. 299, the blue water navy vietnam veterans act and this is really a great day in the united states congress, mr. speaker, and a great day for our heroes blue water navy veterans. this important piece of legislation will enable navy blue water veterans to get the benefits they earned and deserved. in 2002, the v.a. removed the disability eligibility to almost 100,000 veterans who served in the territorial seas of vietnam during the vietnam war.
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this restores the presumption of service connection for those suffering from diseases that have been linked to agent orange. our nation's heroes have answered the call to protect the liberties we enjoy on a daily basis. today it's our turn to answer the call and assist our veterans in return. i urge my colleagues to support this very important bill. i thank chairman roe and representative valadao for leading the charge and not giving up. i know we didn't agree on the pay-for initially. chairman roe did not give up and worked tirelessly on behalf of our veterans. i'm so proud to serve on this committee. let's pass this good bill and get it to the senate. i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman reserves the balance of his time. the gentleman from california. mr. takano: i continue to reserve. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman reserves the balance of his time. the gentleman from tennessee. mr. roe: general bacon, i appreciate the opportunity to
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yield one minute to one of the senior members of our veterans committee and incredible support . our nation's heroes mrs. radewagen: mr. speaker, i rise today in support of h.r. 299. american samoa is home to a great many veterans as our people enlist in high rates in the u.s. armed forces. on their behalf, i'm pleased to support the blue water vietnam veterans act recognizing the relate of those who served on the nation's water. my older brother served in the u.s. navy in the gulf of tonchingin and other area waters during vietnam. this rk nices the nature of their service. this bill honors their mission and helps the commitments we owe our vet advance. thank you, i yield.
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. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from california is recognized. mr. takano: i continue to reserve. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from tennessee is recognized. . roe: i yield 1 1/2 minutes to a vietnam veteran. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized for 1 1/2 minutes. >> i rise in support of h.r. 299, the blue water navy vietnam veterans act. i witnessed firsthand the scope of agent orange exposure while in vietnam. mr. bergman: i am one of that group of veterans. congress recognized the dangerous health consequences of exposures by passing the agent orange act of 1991. which extended disability compensation to veterans that served in vietnam or its inland waterways between the years 1962 and 1975. while the agent orange act provided benefits for tens of thousands of vietnam mainland
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veterans, it overlooked the blue water navy veterans who served on the ships off the coast. those dedicated veterans served our country honorably and are now dealing with health problems due to agent orange exposure. this is why i am a proud co-sponsor of h.r. 299, which extends the disability benefits to veterans who served in the blue water navy in vietnam. mr. speaker, veterans in michigan's first district have greatly sacrificed and earned these benefits and i look forward to ensuring their service is honored. i urge all my colleagues to support this bill, and i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back. the gentleman from california. mr. takano: i continue to reserve, mr. speaker. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman reserves. the gentleman from tennessee is recognized. mr. roe: thk you, mr. speaker. at this time i'd like to yield one minute to mr. lee zeldin, former member of our committee, 1 1/2 minutes. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized for 1 1/2 minutes. mr. zeldin: mr. speaker, i rise in support of h.r. 299, the blue water navy vietnam veterans act, which i am a
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proud co-sponsor. i thank the great congressman from california, david valadao, r his incredible leadership introducing this important legislation. this bill expands treatment coverage for those affected by agent orange from not only those who served on the ground but to those service members who are known as blue water navy vets who were affected while serving our nation at sea. in my home county of suffolk which has the highest concentration of veterans in the state of new york city, hundreds of vietnam veterans and their family will receive the benefits they have earned. they have put their lives on the line for our great nation and they have earned nothing less than the highest quality of care. this legislation includes my bill, the flexible v.a. loan guarantee act, which expands veterans opportunity for homeownership by eliminating the loan limit the v.a. can guarantee this is especially critical in districts like mine where the median home prices are higher. i thank chairman roe for bringing this bill to the floor and i urge all of my colleagues
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to support our nation's veterans by voting in favor of this commonsense legislation. thank you and i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back. the gentleman from california reserves. the gentleman from tennessee. mr. roe: thank you, mr. speaker. i now yield one minute to my good friend, bruce westerman of arkansas. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized for one minute. mr. westerman: thank you, chairman roe, and representative valadao for your strong leadership on this issue. mr. speaker, i rise today in support of h.r. 299, the blue water navy act. our nation's war fighters are told they will receive benefits and coverage through the v.a. because of their service, but reality shows this has not always been the case, as with agent orange. this legislation would correct the issue by providing rightly earned benefits to men and women who are exposed to the herbicide agent orange during their time of service. also included in the blue water navy act is language from my bipartisan bill, h.r. 4843, that provides coverage for children with spina bifida due
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to a parent's exposure to agent orange. i want to thank a veteran in my district who worked tirelessly for veterans. if you were exposed to agent orange, our grateful country should cover the medical expenses. our veterans made great sacrifice and they deserve the best benefits and care possible. the blue water navy act is a great stint toward providing these benefits and i want to thank chairman roe and the veterans' affairs committee for making this a reality. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman's time has expired. the gentleman from california reserves. the gentleman from tennessee is recognized. mr. roe: thank you. at this time i'm pleased to yield 1 1/2 minutes to general don bacon, air force career officer. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized for 1 1/2 minutes. mr. bacon: i am a co-sponsor of this bill and i urge support for h.r. 299. our sailors, when they were off the coast of vietnam, thought
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they were safe from agent orange. but that water was sucked in the ships. they were used for shower water, used to wash their clothes and our sailors were impacted by it and now we know not only them but their children and grandchildren have alsen impacted at times. it's far time that we pass this bill, provide protections to our veterans who are now suffering the consequences of agent orange. i want to thank the leadership of the chairman and mr. valadao for what you're doing. this is the right thing to do. i talked to so many sailors who have been impacted by this and i know they will be relieved to have this bill passed. thank you to you both and thanks to the minority side as well. i yield. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back. the gentleman from california is recognized. mr. takano: mr. speaker, i yield myself such time as i may consume. how much time is remaining for my side? the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from california has 11 1/2 minutes remaining. mr. takano: mr. speaker, i just reflections on
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the persistence of both the chairman and my ranking member, mr. walz. i think it's a great injustice that mr. walz could not be here today because i know how hard he worked with the chairman to find a pay-for. let me say that also for the folks back in my own district, in riverside county, riverside county has the eighth or ninth largest population, absolute population of veterans in the nation, depending what year you're counting, but every year we have an event known as west coast thunder, mostly harley-davidson riders who ride from the harley-davidson shop to riverside national cemetery. and most of those riders are vietnam veterans. i novak home in my district that the veterans' support committee will be thrilled that
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on ress came together on -- this legislation. i'd like at this moment, mr. speaker, to yield three -- two minutes to my good friend and fellow member of the h committee on veterans' affairs, the former chairman of the california legislature's committee, veterans' affairs committee, i think in the state assembly, my good friend, mr. correa. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized for two minutes. mr. correa: mr. speaker, thank you very much. mr. takano, i want to thank you and i want to thank ranking member walz, valadao and our chairman, mr. roe, for h.r. 299, the blue water navy veterans act. this is a great example how democrats and republicans come together to do what's right for our country as well as our veterans. since the vietnam war, veterans have reported numerous health complications, including different forms of cancer related to exposure to agent
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orange. while the department of v.a. has currently presumed veterans who served on the ground in vietnam on the vietnamese river system was exposed to agent orange, that benefit has not gun to the blue water navy veterans that served off the coast. this bill, thank god, corrects that mistake, that decades' long mistake and expands that presumption to those who served in the blue water navy off the vietnam coast and ensures equal treatment for all our veterans. additionally, the bill expands the dates of the presumption to those who served along the korean d.m.z. and authorizes benefits to children born with spina bifida due to the parent's exposure to agent orange. this bill, mr. speaker, is long overdue, and the benefits will possibly change the lives of
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those veterans who served in defense of our country and in defense of freedom of those around the world. mr. speaker, i urge passage of h.r. 299 and yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back. the gentleman from tennessee is recognized. mr. roe: mr. speaker, i'm prepared to close. i have no other speakers. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is prepared to close. the gentleman from california is recognized. mr. takano: mr. speaker, i have no further speakers and i am prepared to close. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. takano: mr. speaker, i, again, want to thank chairman roe for bringing forth this very important legislation. i also want to acknowledge, again, my ranking member, tim walz, for working so hard to bring this legislation to the floor. it was a long time coming. it was introduced four congresses ago, but i believe that this is a shining moment for the veterans' affairs committee and a shining moment for this congress to -- for the people of this country to see us come together and do
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something that's been long overdufort our vietnam veterans , often who were not welcomed home in the way they should have and let us say this is a small gesture what we can do to make amends for that lack of a proper welcoming home. and i am very proud -- this is a very proud moment for me, mr. speaker, and, again, congratulations to chairman roe. i urge my colleagues to join me in passing h.r. 299, as amended, and i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back. the gentleman from tennessee is recognized. mr. roe: thank you, mr. speaker. i ask unanimous consent to include in the record the letters of support for h.r. 299 from the 10 veteran service organizations i mentioned earlier. the speaker pro tempore: the speaker pro tempore: without objection. . roe: there are six million living vietnam veterans. there will be about 4.4 million
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remaining in just 10 short years. that means we'll lose 2.2 million vietnam era veterans in the next 10 years which is an average of about 523 vietnam-era veterans per day. we must now act because if we don't blue water navy veterans may not be around to receive the benefits they and their loved ones have been waiting on for so long. we owe it to the brave men and women who served and veterans who served off-shore during the vietnam era to receive compensation benefits for conditions they may have developed because of exposure to agent orange. i am not the only one wh believes this. .r. 299 has broad bipartisan support. 2 -- 330 co-sponsors. i think i can speak for all of us when i say h.r. 299, as amended, does the right thing for our blue water navy veterans. mr. speaker, this is personal
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for vietnam-era veterans like myself. i served and walked the territory not long after in korea over 40 years ago. and, you know, we've done great work on the committee. we passed an accountability bill this year, a way to speed up disability claims for every g.i. bill funded the choice program, just passed the v.a. mission act. just a few of the things that our committee in a bipartisan way has done. but there is a little inconvenience out there, truth, we have 90,000 blue water navy veterans who are being left behind. not after today. and i want to thank the other side of the aisle. we worked hand in hand. i want to thank the staff. they don't get credit for the hard work the staff does behind the scenes when we seem to find a blind alley and can't get to a conclusion. they continue to work in a bipartisan way to find a way to get to yes. i also want to thank all of the outside groups who kept this
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issue in front of us for decades. when i talked to chairman schiff a year and a half ago i said one of the things i will base my chairmanship on is if we can get this solved and do the right thing for our blue water navy veterans. and today we're going to do the right thing in this house and send it to the senate where they will do the right thing. once again again i encourage members to support h.r. 299, as amended. mr. speaker, i 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. 299, as amended. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. mr. roe: mr. speaker, i request the yeas and nays. the speaker pro tempore: those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair, 2/3 having responded in the affirmative -- mr. roe: i now request the yeas and nays. the speaker pro tempore: the yeas and nays are requested. all those in favor of taking this vote by the yeas and nays
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will rise and remain standing until counted. a sufficient number having arisen, the yeas and nays are ordered. pursuant to clause 8 of rule 20, further proceedings on this question will be postponed. . pursuant to clause 12-a of luol 1 -- of rule 1, the chair declares the
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see the president's comments live at 7:00 p.m. eastern on c-span. and if the senate is out for the night by that time, we'll bring that rally to you live on c-span2. >> this week on the communicators. f.c.c. commissioner on the elimination of net neutrality and the expected surge in corporate mergers after the tatis time warner merger -- at&t-time warner merger. >> the last administration under obama, both chairman wheeler and the head of the anti-trust division, felt that it should not be changed and go to three. so at that time they did not try to merge. should there be four nationwide carriers -- [inaudible] -- >> i

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