December 8, 2006 - Issue: Vol. 152, No. 135 — Daily Edition109th Congress (2005 - 2006) - 2nd Session
CALL HOME ACT OF 2006; Congressional Record Vol. 152, No. 135
(House of Representatives - December 08, 2006)
Text available as:
Formatting necessary for an accurate reading of this text may be shown by tags (e.g., <DELETED> or <BOLD>) or may be missing from this TXT display. For complete and accurate display of this text, see the PDF.
[Page H9256] From the Congressional Record Online through the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov] CALL HOME ACT OF 2006 Mr. BARTON of Texas. Mr. Speaker, I ask unanimous consent to take from the Speaker's table the Senate bill (S. 2653) to direct the Federal Communications Commission to make efforts to reduce telephone rates for Armed Forces personnel deployed overseas, and ask for its immediate consideration in the House. The Clerk read the title of the Senate bill. The SPEAKER pro tempore. Is there objection to the request of the gentleman from Texas? There was no objection. The Clerk read the Senate bill, as follows: S. 2653 Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled, SECTION 1. SHORT TITLE. This Act may be cited as the ``Call Home Act of 2006''. SEC. 2. TELEPHONE RATES FOR MEMBERS OF ARMED FORCES DEPLOYED ABROAD. (a) In General.--The Federal Communications Commission shall take such action as may be necessary to reduce the cost of calling home for Armed Forces personnel who are stationed outside the United States under official military orders or deployed outside the United States in support of military operations, training exercises, or other purposes as approved by the Secretary of Defense, including the reduction of such costs through the waiver of government fees, assessments, or other charges for such calls. The Commission may not regulate rates in order to carry out this section. (b) Factors To Consider.--In taking the action described in subsection (a), the Commission, in coordination with the Department of Defense and the Department of State, shall-- (1) evaluate and analyze the costs to Armed Forces personnel of such telephone calls to and from American military bases abroad; (2) evaluate methods of reducing the rates imposed on such calls, including deployment of new technology such as voice over internet protocol or other Internet protocol technology; (3) encourage telecommunications carriers (as defined in section 3(44) of the Communications Act of 1934 (47 U.S.C. 153(44))) to adopt flexible billing procedures and policies for Armed Forces personnel and their dependents for telephone calls to and from such Armed Forces personnel; and (4) seek agreements with foreign governments to reduce international surcharges on such telephone calls. (c) Definitions.--In this section: (1) Armed forces.--The term ``Armed Forces'' has the meaning given that term by section 2101(2) of title 5, United States Code. (2) Military base.--The term ``military base'' includes official duty stations to include vessels, whether such vessels are in port or underway outside of the United States. SEC. 3. REPEAL OF EXISTING AUTHORIZATION. Section 213 of the Telecommunications Authorization Act of 1992 (47 U.S.C. 201 note) is repealed. SEC. 4. PUBLIC SAFETY INTEROPERABLE COMMUNICATIONS GRANTS. Pursuant to section 3006 of Public Law 109-171 (47 U.S.C. 309 note), the Assistant Secretary for Communications and Information of the Department of Commerce, in consultation with the Secretary of the Department of Homeland Security, shall award no less than $1,000,000,000 for public safety interoperable communications grants no later than September 30, 2007 subject to the receipt of qualified applications as determined by the Assistant Secretary. The Senate bill was ordered to be read a third time, was read the third time, and passed, and a motion to reconsider was laid on the table. ____________________