Sunday, October 11, 2009

Congressional Hearing Schedule 10-12-09

So far there is only one hearing scheduled for the coming week that should be of interest to the chemical security community. It is, however, a potentially important hearing for the CFATS program, the first markup hearing in the House Energy and Commerce Committee. On Wednesday, October 14th, the Energy and Environment Subcommittee will hold the first markup for HR 2868 since the Administration finalized their approach to chemical facility security regulations and the first markup for HR 3258, the water facility security legislation. DHS ISCD has been working closely with the Committee staff in developing the changes necessary to implement the Administration’s approach to chemical security. We can expect to see changes proposed that will include: Moving waste water treatment facilities from HR 2868 to HR 3258 coverage; Adding language authorizing some sort of staggered IST implementation; and Adding language requiring DHS to develop expertise in IST implementation. It will be interesting to see if Chairman Markey makes even a proforma attempt to get Republican buy-in on either bill. In the Homeland Security Committee there was a concerted effort to find and support at least a few Republican amendments to give the sense of a bipartisan effort.

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