Friday, March 1, 2013

Bills Introduced – 2-28-13

Yesterday there were 37 bills introduced in the Senate and 54 bills introduced in the House, a virtual flurry of bills before Congress left for the weekend. Two of the House bills may be of interest to the cybersecurity and chemical safety/security communities; HR 888 and HR 900.

HR 888 Latest Title: To amend section 112(r) of the Clean Air Act (relating to prevention of accidental releases). Sponsor: Rep Pompeo, Mike (R-KS)

HR 900 Latest Title: To eliminate the sequestration under section 251A of the Balanced Budget and Emergency Deficit Control Act of 1985, and for other purposes. Sponsor: Rep Conyers, John, Jr. (D,MI)

General Duty Clause

HR 888 is almost certainly the same as HR 6345 introduced last session. It would address the use of the General Duty Clause of the Clean Air Act {42 USC § 7412r(1)} in general and the proposed use of that clause to require high-risk chemical facilities to implement inherently safer technology as a security measure to protect against terrorist attack.

This will be a fairly high-profile piece of legislation in the House. A letter of support from 26 organizations representing a wide variety of chemical manufacturers has already been sent to the authors of this bill and the Chairman of the House Energy and Commerce Committee that will take the lead in moving this bill forward.


HR 900 introduced by Conyers will join the list of pro forma bills introduced on the sequestration issues that will never see action in the House. If passed it would undoubtedly (even though I haven’t seen the actual language) affect spending on cybersecurity and chemical safety/security activities in the federal government, so it deserves mention here, but this will be the last we hear of this bill.

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