More on Homeland Security
WASHINGTON, DC – President Bush’s FY08 budget proposal, delivered to Congress yesterday, includes an $800 million cut in local homeland security grants. Included in those cuts is a 64% cut in the State Homeland Security Grant Program (from $525 million to $187.5 million), as well as a 22% cut in the Urban Area Security Initiative (from $770 million to $600 million). These cuts could disproportionately affect New York, which has the highest threat level and receives more homeland grant money than any other state.
Washington, DC – House Financial Services Committee Chairman Barney Frank (D-MA), and the likely-Chairman of the Subcommittee on Domestic & International Monetary Policy, Trade and Technology, Rep. Luis V. Gutierrez (D-IL), announced today a full committee hearing to examine the Committee on Foreign Investments in the United States (CFIUS) and H.R. 556, the “National Security Foreign Investment Reform and Strengthened Transparency Act of 2007, sponsored by Rep. Carolyn Maloney (D-NY).
WASHINGTON, DC – Leading members of the House Financial Services Committee today introduced legislation (H.R. 556) to reform the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States, which is responsible for vetting foreign direct investment in this country (text of legislation). Rep. Carolyn Maloney (D-NY), Rep. Deborah Pryce (R-OH), Rep. Joseph Crowley (D-NY) and Minority Whip Roy Blunt (R-MO), who last year jointly sponsored a bipartisan CFIUS reform bill that unanimously passed the House, have joined together again to introduce the new legislation, which mirrors last year’s version. Financial Services Committee Chairman Barney Frank (D-MA) and Ranking Member Spencer Bachus (R-AL) support the legislation and have joined as original co-sponsors.
WASHINGTON, DC – Included in legislation to implement the 9/11 Commission’s recommendations before the House of Representatives today are provisions to give the Privacy and Civil Liberties Oversight Board more power and independence.
WASHINGTON, DC – As the House of Representatives considered comprehensive legislation to implement the 9/11 Commission’s recommendations, leading bipartisan Members of Congress joined with 9/11 family members today to reiterate the importance of the legislation for America’s national security. H.R. 1 is part of the Democrats’ First 100 Hours agenda, which addresses a number of core issues for all Americans, from national security to education to health care.
WASHINGTON, DC – Voting machine firm Smartmatic has announced that it plans to sell major voting machine maker Sequoia Voting Systems. With this pending sale, Smartmatic is withdrawing from the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States investigation into its 2005 purchase of Sequoia.
Sponsor of 9/11 Commission Implementation Legislation Hails Speaker-Elect’s Plan for Intel Oversight
WASHINGTON, DC – Today, House Speaker-elect Nancy Pelosi announced that, as part of the Democrats’ pledge to implement all of the 9/11 Commission’s recommendations, she will create a Select Intelligence Oversight Panel to control the intelligence budget. This falls in line with one of the commission’s key recommendations: that Congress should reorganize for better oversight of intelligence spending.
As Dubai Company Finally Sells U.S. Ports, Lead Democrat on CFIUS Bill Says Reform Still Badly Needed
WASHINGTON, DC – Dubai Ports World (DPW) has reached an agreement to sell commercial management of several of the busiest ports in the United States to American International Group’s (AIG) Global Investment Group, according to news reports today. The divestiture of these ports was the result of public and Congressional outrage after the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States (CFIUS) had given DPW the green light to purchase the ports from a British firm. DPW is owned by the government of Dubai.
As Civil Liberties Board Makes First Public Appearance, Author of Legislation Says Board Needs Real Power
WASHINGTON, DC – The Privacy and Civil Liberties Oversight Board, created in 2004, participated in its first public meeting today at Georgetown University. Rep. Carolyn Maloney (NY-14), co-chair of the 9/11 Commission Caucus and sponsor of legislation to increase the board’s power (H.R. 1310), said today that without a level of power in line with what the 9/11 Commission has advocated, the board will be unable to truly protect civil liberties.
WASHINGTON, DC – The Member of Congress who first highlighted the need for an investigation of a deal involving voting machine manufacturer Smartmatic is urging the Department of Treasury to make the results of the investigation public when they are finalized (letter to Treasury). Smartmatic, a company with Venezuelan roots, announced shortly before November’s elections that it was indeed undergoing a Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States investigation related to its purchase of Sequoia Voting Systems in 2005.