Wednesday, July 20, 2022

Review - Senate Considering HR 4346 – CHIPS Act

Yesterday, the Senate took up the House amendment, to the Senate Amendment to HR 4346, the FY 2022 Legislative Branch Appropriations Act, as the vehicle for the CHIPS Act. The Senate action will start with the SA 5135 as substitute language. It looks like Schumer is trying to limit the amendment process, filling the ‘amendment tree’ with inconsequential amendments. Action on the bill is continuing today.

This is a new try at passing a technology spending bill to break the impasse between the Senate and House on S 1260 and HR 4521. The new attempt is slightly more focused on chip manufacturing, with lots of extraneous (but not nearly all) matter stripped out. It does include some cybersecurity language, but not as much as was in either of the earlier bills. The cybersecurity provisions include:

Sec. 10223. NIST authority for cybersecurity and privacy activities.

Sec. 10228. Protecting research from cybersecurity theft.

Sec. 10235. Dr. David Satcher Cybersecurity Education Grant Program.  [S 2305]

Sec. 10315. Cyber workforce development research and development.

Sec. 10316. Federal cyber scholarship-for service program.

Sec. 10317. Cybersecurity workforce data initiative.

Moving Forward

There has not yet been a cloture vote on this revised bill, so it is hard to assess if there will be enough Republican support for the bill to move it forward in the House. We are starting to get into that period in the calendar where election considerations play an even higher than normal role in legislative actions. To me, however, the bigger question is has Schumer finally worked out language on a technology bill that will pass in the Democratically controlled House? The Democrats need a legislative win in a measure that will have a visible impact on improving the economy without looking like it is throwing money at people.

For a more detailed look at the cybersecurity provisions of the substitute language, see my article at CFSN Detailed Analysis - - subscription required.

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