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tv   U.S. House of Representatives U.S. House of Representatives  CSPAN  April 1, 2019 4:05pm-4:41pm EDT

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we are waiting for the house to return. and that is an approximate time and when they come back to the floor, they are set to work on four homeland security suspension bills. so we are standing by. the senate live coverage now on c-span 2. for what purpose does the
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gentleman from mississippi seek recognition? >> i move that the house suspend the rules and pass h r. 14 3, as amended. the speaker pro tempore: the clerk will report the title of he bill. the clerk: a bill to amend the homeland security act to improve morale within the department of homeland security work force by conferring new responsibilities to the chief human capital officer, establishing and employee engagement subcommittee and authorizing an annual employee award program and for other purposes. the speaker pro tempore: pursuant to the rule, the gentleman from mississippi, mr. thompson thearninged jess from mississippi, mr. guest, each will control 20 mr. thompson: i ask unanimous consent that all members may have five legislative days to revise and extend their remarks and to include extraneous
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aterial on this measure. thank you very much, mr. speaker. mr. speaker, i rise in support f h.r. 1433, the d.h.s. morale act, and yield myself such time as i may consume. thank you, mr. speaker. mr. speaker, every day, the department of homeland security work force carries out dozens of critical missions which are as diverse as preventing terrorism, securing cyber space, transportation security and disaster recovery. these 240,000 men and women deserve to have their contributions to keep the nation secured valid by not only the american people but also by d.h.s. itself. yet even before the president's 35-day partial government
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shutdown earlier this year, morale within d.h.s. was a persistent problem. in fact, for the past seven years, d.h.s. has ranked dead last among all fellow agencies for public services annual best places to work in the federal government survey. this is unacceptable. senior d.h.s. leadership, most especially the secretary of homeland security need to prioritize improving morale within the d.h.s. work force. in the obama administration, then d.h.s. secretary johnson began to address this operational imperative to a range of programs under the unity of ethics umbrellas. unfortunately, the current administration abandoned those efforts. i have long been committed to improving conditions for the d.h.s. work force. o that end i re-introduce h.r.
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1433, t.h.s. morale act, a bill that passed the house unanimously and received tremendous support from the labor organizations representing the d.h.s. labor force. the d.h.s. morale act requires d.h.s. to develop and implement policies related to leadership development, employee engagement, career progress gregs and employee recommendations. this congress, two new provisions were added to the bill. the first directs the d.h.s. chief human capital officer to analyze government-wide work force satisfaction or morale surveys to improve morale. the second provision requires a report to congress of the impact of the recent government shutdown on d.h.s. human resource and morale.
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both of these measures would be a step towards fixing the long standing morale problems at d.h.s. with that, mr. speaker, i urge the passage of h.r. 1433 and reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman reserves the balance of his time. the gentleman from mississippi is recognized. guest: i yield myself such time as i may consume. today i rise in support of h.r. 1433, d.h.s. morale act. it seeks to address an issue that has plagued the department of homeland security, low employee morale. d.h.s. has reported low employee morale on the survey and remains dead last out of large agencies employee satisfaction. these numbers are troubling. d.h.s. must find ways to improve employee morale. the department has two other
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issues. h.r. 1433 will address the moral e problem at d.h.s. by improving leadership development, work force planning and employee engagement programs. i urge my colleagues to support h.r. 1433 to improve morale throughout d.h.s. and its components and i resevere the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman reserves the balance of his time. the gentleman from mississippi is recognized. r. thompson: i have no further eakers and i'm prepared to close. mr. guest: i would urge adoption of the bill and i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. the gentleman from mississippi is recognized. mr. thompson: h.r. 1433 would help improve morale along the department's 240,000 employees by creating and cataloging
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leadership development opportunities, identifying and addressing factors that impact employee engagement and recognize employee contributions. the d.h.s. morale act continues to have support of the national border patrol council, national employees union and american federation of government employees. enactment of the bill will help d.h.s. examine the root cause of the long standing morale concerns and determine the best strategy to move the department forward in a positive direction. with that, mr. speaker, i ask for my colleagues' support 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 the bill h.r. 1433 as amended. those in favor say aye. . those opposed, no.
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in the opinion of the chair, 2/3 being in the affirmative, the rules are suspended, the bill is passed and without objection, the motion to reconsider is laid n the table. for what purpose does the gentleman from mississippi seek recognition? mr. thompson: mr. speaker, i move the house suspend the rules and pass h.r. 1593 as amended. the speaker pro tempore: the clerk will report the title of the bill. the clerk: h.r. 1593 a bill to amend the homeland security act of 2002 to establish a school security coordinating council and for other purposes. the speaker pro tempore: pursuant to the rule, the gentleman from mississippi, mr. thompson and the gentleman from mississippi, mr. guest, each will control 20 minutes. the chair recognizes mr. thompson. mr. thompson: i ask unanimous consent that members may have five legislative days to revise
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and extend their remarks and include extraneous material on this. the speaker pro tempore: without objection. mr. thompson: i rise in support of h.r. 1593 the coordination and leveraging activity of schools security act and yield myself such time as i may consume. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. thompson: thank you, mr. speaker. mr. speaker, school violence continues to devastate communities and take the lives of so many young people. in 2018, we saw a record number of school shootings across the country. in response, congressman donald payne junior introduced h.r. 1593, the coordination and leveraging activities for school s security act known as the class act. h.r. 1593 seeks to ensure that the department of homeland security organizes itself to help bolster school security.
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specifically, the class act establishes a standing body within d.h.s. to coordinate the department's school initiatives, plans and policies. additionally, to help ensure that d.h.s. gives school security adequate attention, h.r. 1593 requires the department to report to congress on the work of the council. mr. speaker, this is an important bill. and i urge my colleagues to support h.r. 1593. and i reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman reserves the balance of his time. the gentleman from mississippi is recognized. mr. guest: i rise in support of h.r. 1593rk the class act. codifying this into law will ensure important channels for information sharing and
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coordination are maintained in changes in administration. currently, d.h.s. utilizes the number of tools to assist in the protection of our nation's children. for example the united states secret service's national threat assessment center has created an operational guide to provide actionable steps that schools can take to develop specific violence prevention plans for their students. additionally d.h.s.'s office of academic engagement, o. eamplet, improves and leverages relationships with the academic community. o.a.e.'s work focuses on outreach, engagement and resiliency by supporting institutions of higher learning and the k-12 community in preparing for, responding to, an recovering from threats and hazards that pose the greatest risk. o.a.e. offers a campus
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resiliency program resource library which provides the academic community with access to guidelines, strategies, and resources to address the risk and vulnerabilities of their campus. the library's organized into categories according to a specific threat or hazard as outlined in the federal emergency management agency's national preparedness goal. while numerous d.h.s. components and agencies provide resources and recommendations with regard to school security, it is imperative that work be done in unison and that there is coordination across all relevant agencies within d.h.s. i urge all members to join me in supporting this bill and i reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman reserves. the gentleman from mississippi, mr. thompson, is recognized. mr. thompson: thank you, mr. speaker. at this point, i yield as much time as he may consume to the
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author of this legislation, the gentleman from new jersey, mr. donald payne jr. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. payne: thank you, mr. speaker. i want to thank the gentleman or yielding. mr. speaker, school shootings are a dreadful atrocity plaguing our nation. nearly 20 years have passed since the horrendous shooting in -- shoolings in columbine high school where 13 people last their lives. yet schools and universities continue to be soft targets for deadly attacks. last year, between the months of january and may, 2018, there was the margery stoneman douglas shooting that claimed the lives of 17 individuals, but there were also shootings nearly every week at our nation's schools. as history as shown us there is
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school likely to be targeted. this tragedy can happen at any school. in 2012, after the horrific shooting at sandy hook elementary in newtown, connecticut, the department of homeland security conducted an nternal review of actions that if components were taken to help improve school security. today i understand that multiple d.h.s. components currently have programs under way to address school security but the degree to which there is coordination s unclear. coordinating leveling act for school security or class act will establish a department within homeland security to coordinate school security activities, plan, and policies.
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the coordinating council will include all key players in school security at the department. they uncollide -- they include the d.h.s. undersecretary of strategy policy and plan the director of cyber security and infrastructure protection, the fema administrator, the secret service director, and the heads of d.h.s. offices of academic engagement and public affairs. this legislation was not developed in a vacuum. inspiration nor legislation came directly from experiences of those impacted by school violence and from input of new jerseyans. last julying, my subcommittee held a school security field hearing in newark. at the hear, the subcommittee heard from the new jersey state police, the new jersey department of education, and the new jersey association of school
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resource officers and the new jersey office of homeland security about the risk the schools case and how congress can provide support. at the hearing and subsequently through our outreach and oversight, we came to understand that there is a need to be better coordinated, coordination of school securities activities within d.h.s. to bolster coordination and minimize fragmentation. as a leader in developing a school security best practices and policies, it is important for d.h.s. to have a formal school security body so that it can provide an example to those n the state and local level on thousand coordinate to protect schools.
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with that, mr. speaker, i urge my colleagues to support this legislation and yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from mississippi reserves. the gentleman from mississippi is recognized. mr. guest: thank you, mr. speaker. i would like to make the congressman from mississippi aware i have no further speakers and i am prepared to close. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. payne: thank you, mr. speaker, i have no further speakers on my side and i am prepared to close after the gentleman from mississippi closes. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from mississippi, mr. guest is recognized. mr. guest: thank you, mr. speaker. mr. speaker, i urge adoption of this bill and i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from mississippi, mr. thompson is recognized. mr. thompson: thank you, mr. speaker. mr. speaker, school shootings have claimed the lives of too many young people. passage of the class act would ensure that the department of
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homeland security is positioned to be impactful in its efforts to address the escalating risk to school security. i commend the gentleman from new jersey, mr. payne, for his leadership on this issue. with that, mr. speaker, i ask my colleagues -- for my colleagues support and yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back. the question is will the house suspend the rules and pass the bill h.r. 1593 as amended. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair, 2/3 being in the affirmative. the gentleman is recognized. mr. thompson: mr. speaker, on that i ask for a recorded vote. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman requests the yeas and nays? mr. thompson: yes. the speaker pro tempore: the yeas and nays are requested. those in favor of taking this vote by the yeas and nays will
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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 mississippi rise? mr. thompson: i move that the house suspend the rules and pass h.r. 1590. the speaker pro tempore: does the gentleman wish to call up the bill as amended? mr. thompson: yes. the speaker pro tempore: the clerk will report the title of the bill. the clerk: h.r. 1590, a bill to require an exercise related to terrorist and foreign fighter travel and for ore purposes. the speaker pro tempore: pursuant to the rule, the gentleman from mississippi, mr. thompson, and the gentleman from mississippi, mr. guest, will each control 20 minutes. the chair recognizes the gentleman from mississippi, mr. thompson. mr. thompson: thank you, mr. speaker. i ask unanimous consent that all
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members have five legislative days to revise and extend their remarks and include extraneous materials on this measure. the speaker pro tempore: without objection. mr. thompson: i rise in support of h.r. 159, 0 the terrorist and foreign fight -- h.r. 1590, the terrorist and foreign fighter travel act of 2019 and yield myself such time as i may consume. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. thompson: thank you. in the almost 18 years since the september 11 terrorist attacks, threats to the american public have become increasingly flex and today include threats posed by foreign fighters. in 2015, a committee on homeland security task force on combating terrorists and foreign fighters travel issued a bipartisan report that included a number of recommendations. h.r. 1590 requires the department of homeland security to develop and conduct the
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foreign fighter exercise that could be built into existing d.h.s. domestic preparedness exercises. importantly, after the exercise, d.h.s. is required to submit an after-action report to congress detailing the initial findings, plans for incorporating lessons learned, and any legislative changes informed by this exercise. a very similar version of this legislation passed the foul house last congress. i'm pleased that through this markup process, modest modifications were made to improve the measure. with that, mr. speaker, i urge passage of h.r. 1590 and i reserve the plns of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman reserves. the gentleman from mississippi is recognized. mr. guest: thank you, mr. speaker. i yield myself such time as may -- as i may consume. i rise today in strong support of my bill h.r. 159, 0 the terrorist and foreign fighter
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travel exercise act of 2019. the legislation speaks to better position the united states government and relevant state, local, and private sector agencies to detect and prevent terrorists and foreign fighter travel in 2015, the committee on home lan security developed a bipartisan task force to investigate the threat from individuals leaving the united states to join terrorist groups abroad. the task force reported that nearly 4,500 individuals from western countries with over 250 from the united states, traveled to join islamic terrorist groups. it goes on to detail 32 findings and over 50 recommendations to address this national security issue. during both the 114th congress and the 115th congress, former representative and now senator martha mcsally introduced this
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legislation. and both times the bill passed unanimously in the house. senator mcsally previously stated, the abilities of these hardened fighters to return to the united states is a legitimate security concern to the homeland. catching individuals who were looking to join the ranks and train with isis and other terrorist organizations prior to their initial departure is equally important and should be a goal for law enforcement as well. mr. speaker, these words still ring true today. just last year, an ohio man was arrested at the john glenn international airport trying to fly to kazakhstan. his intent was stob smug intooled afghanistan to train with isis with the possibility of conducting terrorist projects in the united states. according to an f.b.i. release on this matter, when the terrorist was asked what sort of
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training he wished to receive, he allegedly state head wanted to receive, and i quote, weapons expert training. planning. executing. hit and run. capturing high value targets. ways to break into homes and avoid security. the ability of these hardened fighters to return to the united states is a legitimate security concern. eventing their initial departure should be a priority as well. furthermore, the white house released a strategy to combat terrorist travel travel that expands how the government will expand coordination and maximize the federal departments and agencies to identify, detect, and deter terrorists from crossing international borders. one of the goals is to identify
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and deter terrorists before they travel. to enhance intelligence gathering and analysis. and improve the sharing of terrorist-related identity data. h.r. 1550 complements and supports these -- 1590 complements and supports these efforts. it requires the secretary of homeland security in coordination with appropriate federal, state, local and tribal territorial agency, foreign governments and appropriate private sector entities to develop and conduct an exercise related to the detection and prevention of terrorists and foreign fighter travel. secretary requires to present the findings of the exercise and quickly incorporate those lessons learned into future operations of the department. finally, it requires that the national exercise program be designated to include emerging
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threats. and i cannot stress enough the importance of h.r. 1590. this bill represents continued action in combatting terrorism and ensuring the safety of our nation. as the threat of terrorism continues to evolve, we must remain vidgelant and resolved to combat our enemies. our nation's law enforcement of all jurisdictions, whether it be federal or local, need to have access to the valuable information and resources that this bill would provide so that our communities can be protected from terrorist activity. i urge all members to join me in supporting this bipartisan and commonsense bill. thank you, mr. speaker. i resevere the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman reserves the balance of his time. the gentleman from mississippi is recognized. mr. thompson: thank you, mr. speaker. mr. speaker, i have no further speakers and am prepared to close after the gentleman from
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mississippi closes. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from mississippi reserves. the gentleman from mississippi is recognized. mr. guest: i urge the adoption of this bill and i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back. the gentleman from mississippi is recognized. mr. thompson: thank you, mr. speaker. mr. speaker, before i close, let me compliment the gentleman on the passage of this bill. this is, i believe, his maiden bill before the house of representatives. and as one mississippiian to another, i congratulate him for that. because terrorists are seeking new ways to cause harm and spread fear, we must continuously work to keep pace with the evolving threat landscape. h.r. 1590 seeks to strengthen the nation's abilities to close the gaps in how we identify and assess threats for terrorists
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foreign fighters. i support it and i ask my colleagues to support it as well. with that, 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 the amended. 190 as -- 1590 as amended. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair, 2/3 being in the affirmative -- mr. thompson: mr. speaker the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from mississippi is recognized. mr. thompson: i ask for 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, rule 20, further proceedings on this uestion will be postponed.
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for what purpose does the gentleman from mississippi seek recognition? mr. thompson: mr. speaker, i move that the house suspend the rules and pass h.r. 1589 as amended. the speaker pro tempore: the clerk will report the title of the bill. the clerk: h.r. 1589 a bill to amend the homeland security act of 2002 to establish chemical, biological, radiological and nuclear intelligence and information-sharing functions of the office of intelligence and analysis of the department of homeland security and to require dissemination of information analyzed by the department to entities with responsibilities relating to homeland security and for other purposes. the speaker pro tempore: pursuant to the rule, the gentleman from mississippi, mr. thompson, and the gentleman from mississippi, mr. guess, each will control 20 minutes. the chair recognizes the gentleman from mississippi, mr. thompson. mr. thompson: i ask unanimous consent that all members may have five legislative days to revise and extend their remarks
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and include extraneous material on this measure. the speaker pro tempore: without objection. mr. thompson: thank you very much. mr. speaker, i rise in support of h.r. 1589, the chemical biological, radiological and nuclear intelligence and information act of 2019 and yield myself such time as i may consume. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. thompson: thank you, mr. speaker. in the last two congresses, the committee on homeland security held federal, state and local capabilities to prevent, identify and respond to a chemical, biological, radiological or nuclear attack. at those hearings, state and local stakeholders, including public health professionals, emergency managers and first responders, expressed general awareness of evolving cbrn threats, but expressed
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frustration with the level of information sharing about such threats. h.r. 1589 seeks to facilitate, improve cbrn information sharing directing d.h.s. to analyze cbrn-related terrorist threats and share related information with federal, state and local stakeholders. these activities could help improve situational awareness in all levels of government and grant them their targeted resources. five versions of this passed the house overwhelmingly in the last two congresses. i urge my colleagues to support this measure once again and i reserve. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman reserves the balance of his time. the gentleman from mississippi is recognized. mr. guest: i yield myself such time as i may consume. 1589. in support of h.r.
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we know that terrorists want to attack our nation with chemical, biological, radiological and nuclear materials. this would require the office of intelligence and analysis within the department of homeland security to conduct analysis of trirlt capabilities relating to chemical, biological, radiological and nuclear materials as well as threats to the homeland. to improve coordination with local law enforcement, h.r. 1589 requires the office of intelligence and analysis to share threat information not only with federal entities, but also state, local, tribal and territorial agencies. i commend my colleague, mr. walker, for introducing this important legislation. and i urge all members to support it. i reserve the balance of my
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time. the speaker pro tempore: the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from mississippi reserves. the gentleman from mississippi is recognized. mr. thompson: i have no more speakers and am prepared to close after the gentleman from mississippi closes. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. guest: i urge adoption and i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. the gentleman from mississippi is recognized. mr. thompson: this is essential to prevent and respond to threats posed by bad actors. h.r. 1589 will facilitate information sharing where new threats are constantly emerging. i urge my colleagues to support h.r. 1589. 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 the amended. 1589 as those in favor say aye. those opposed, no.
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in the opinion of the chair, 2/3 being in the affirmative, the rules are suspended, the bill is assed and without objection the motion to reconsider is laid on the table. pursuant to 12-a, rule 1, the chair declares the house in recess until approximately 6:30 p.m. today. .
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