The Senate Appropriations Committee published the text of the amendment that will be offered as a substitute for the recently passed HR 933, the Department of Defense, Military Construction and Veterans Affairs, and Full-Year Continuing Appropriations Act, 2013. Among other things this substitute language would change the title of the bill to Consolidated and Further Continuing Appropriations Act, 2013. The reason for the change is that three additional full spending bills have been added to the bill, including Homeland Security.
As you might expect this is a large documents, 587 pages, so I haven’t had a chance to look at it too closely yet, but I did note that §537 of Division D would extend the current CFATS authorization until, October 4, 2013 [Typo corrected 0710 CST, 3-13-13].
I have spent a little more time looking at the ‘Homeland Security Explanatory Remarks’ document that was also published on the Committee web site. This provides detailed guidance to federal agencies that is not quite a full legal requirement. Remembering that those agencies have to come back to the Committee next year for funds (actually later this year, hopefully) agencies have to be extremely careful in their failure to comply with these unofficial requirements.
At this point, I’ll just provide a list of the ‘remarks’ that I think reader’s might find interesting. Full comment on these may come in a later post.
TWIC Reader Rule: The Department, and in particular the Coast Guard and the Transportation Security Administration (TSA), is directed to take all necessary action to expedite the completion and publication of a final rule governing the Transportation Worker Identification Credential (TWIC) reader requirement.
Chemical Security: Congress directed the Coast Guard and the National Protection and Programs Directorate to complete a planned Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) to harmonize chemical security responsibilities established by the Chemical Facilities Anti-Terrorism Standards (CFATS) regulations and Maritime Transportation Security Act (MTSA) regulatory programs no later than March 30, 2012, but the agreement has not been finalized. The MOU is to be completed expeditiously. The Deputy Secretary is also directed to continue semiannual reporting to the Committees on these matters as outlined in Senate Report 112-74.
A report over at TheHill.com notes that the debate on the substitute language for HR 933 will begin today and that it appears that an agreement is in place to allow floor amendments to the bill. This could get interesting over the next week or so.