Sunday, May 13, 2012

Congressional Hearings – Week of 5-14-12

Only three hearings this week that will be of potential interest to the chemical or cybersecurity communities; all of them deal with spending issues.

DOD Authorization Bill

On Tuesday afternoon the House Rules Committee will meet to formulate the rule for the consideration of HR 4310, the National Defense Authorization Act. As I noted in an earlier blog there is no specific cybersecurity language in the original bill, but we might expect some cybersecurity amendments offered on the floor later this week. Additionally, the House Armed Services Committee Report was submitted on Friday, but it has yet to be posted on the GPO web site; I’ll take a look at it when it becomes available and comment on any cybersecurity related issues raised in that in a later post.

DHS Appropriations Bills

Work continues on both the House and Senate versions of the DHS FY 2013 spending bill this week. As I noted last week the CFATS program is facing serious budget cuts and perhaps (remote possibility to be sure) a failure to extend its authorization. The ISCD problems have changed a previously untouchable program to one under the gun.

The full House Appropriations Committee will meet on Wednesday to complete the markup of the House bill. The Appropriations Committee is usually very quick about introducing their bills and filing their reports (usually on the same day) so I expect that we will see the publication of the bill to be considered by the House sometime early next week.

The Homeland Security Subcommittee of the Senate Appropriations Committee will meet for their markup of the Senate version of this bill on Tuesday. It will be interesting to see if the Senate (which still hasn’t held any hearings on the ISCD problems) bill treats the CFATS program as harshly as the House bill appears to be going to do.

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