H. Rept. 105-846 - 105th Congress (1997-1998)
January 02, 1999, As Reported by the Commerce Committee

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House Report 105-846 - REPORT ON THE ACTIVITY OF THE COMMITTEE ON COMMERCE FOR THE ONE HUNDRED FIFTH CONGRESS




[House Report 105-846]
[From the U.S. Government Printing Office]




                                                 Union Calendar No. 487
-----------------------------------------------------------------------
105th Congress                                                   Report
  2d Session            HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES                105-846
_______________________________________________________________________

                                     


                        REPORT ON THE ACTIVITY

                                 OF THE

                         COMMITTEE ON COMMERCE

                                FOR THE

                       ONE HUNDRED FIFTH CONGRESS

                                     
<GRAPHIC(S) NOT AVAILABLE IN TIFF FORMAT>


January 2, 1999.--Committed to the Committee of the Whole House on the 
              State of the Union and ordered to be printed

                               --------

                    U.S. GOVERNMENT PRINTING OFFICE                    
53-218                     WASHINGTON : 1999





                         COMMITTEE ON COMMERCE

                       One Hundred Fifth Congress

                     TOM BLILEY, Virginia, Chairman

W.J. ``BILLY'' TAUZIN, Louisiana     JOHN D. DINGELL, Michigan
MICHAEL G. OXLEY, Ohio               HENRY A. WAXMAN, California
MICHAEL BILIRAKIS, Florida           EDWARD J. MARKEY, Massachusetts
DAN SCHAEFER, Colorado               RALPH M. HALL, Texas
JOE BARTON, Texas                    RICK BOUCHER, Virginia
J. DENNIS HASTERT, Illinois          THOMAS J. MANTON, New York
FRED UPTON, Michigan                 EDOLPHUS TOWNS, New York
CLIFF STEARNS, Florida               FRANK PALLONE, Jr., New Jersey
BILL PAXON, New York                 SHERROD BROWN, Ohio
PAUL E. GILLMOR, Ohio                BART GORDON, Tennessee
  Vice Chairman                      ELIZABETH FURSE, Oregon
JAMES C. GREENWOOD, Pennsylvania     PETER DEUTSCH, Florida
MICHAEL D. CRAPO, Idaho              BOBBY L. RUSH, Illinois
CHRISTOPHER COX, California          ANNA G. ESHOO, California
NATHAN DEAL, Georgia                 RON KLINK, Pennsylvania
STEVE LARGENT, Oklahoma              BART STUPAK, Michigan
RICHARD BURR, North Carolina         ELIOT L. ENGEL, New York
BRIAN P. BILBRAY, California         THOMAS C. SAWYER, Ohio
ED WHITFIELD, Kentucky               ALBERT R. WYNN, Maryland
GREG GANSKE, Iowa                    GENE GREEN, Texas
CHARLIE NORWOOD, Georgia             KAREN McCARTHY, Missouri
RICK WHITE, Washington               TED STRICKLAND, Ohio
TOM COBURN, Oklahoma                 DIANA DeGETTE, Colorado
RICK LAZIO, New York
BARBARA CUBIN, Wyoming
JAMES E. ROGAN, California
JOHN SHIMKUS, Illinois
HEATHER WILSON, New Mexico

                                  (ii)

  
                         LETTER OF TRANSMITTAL

                              ----------                              


                     U.S. House of Representatives,
                                     Committee on Commerce,
                                   Washington, DC, January 2, 1999.
Hon. Jeff Trandahl
Clerk,
House of Representatives
H-154 The Capitol
Washington, D.C. 20515

    Dear Mr. Trandahl: I present herewith a report on the 
activity of the Committee on Commerce for the 105th Congress, 
including the Committee's review and study of legislation 
within its jurisdiction and the oversight activities undertaken 
by the Committee.
            Sincerely,
                                              Tom Bliley, Chairman,

                                 (iii)



                            C O N T E N T S

                               __________
                                                                   Page

    Jurisdiction.................................................     1
    Rules for the Committee......................................     2
    Members and Organization.....................................    23
    Legislative and Oversight Activity...........................    29
    Full Committee...............................................    31
    Subcommittee on Telecommunications, Trade, and Consumer 
      Protection.................................................    37
    Subcommittee on Finance and Hazardous Materials..............   103
    Subcommittee on Health and Environment.......................   133
    Subcommittee on Energy and Power.............................   211
    Subcommittee on Oversight and Investigations.................   261
    Oversight Plan for the 105th Congress........................   315
    Appendix I--Legislative Summary..............................   385
    Appendix II--Full Committee Membershp Changes................   387
    Appendix III--Subcommittee Membership Changes................   391
    Appendix IV--Public Laws.....................................   399
    Appendix V--Publications of the Committee....................   403

                                  (v)



                                                 Union Calendar No. 487

105th Congress                                                   Report
  2d Session            HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES                105-846

=======================================================================



 
   REPORT ON THE ACTIVITY OF THE COMMITTEE ON COMMERCE FOR THE 105TH 
                                CONGRESS

                                _______
                                

January 2, 1999.--Committed to the Committee of the Whole House on the 
              State of the Union and ordered to be printed

                                _______


  Mr. Bliley, from the Committee on Commerce, submitted the following

                              R E P O R T

    The jurisdiction of the Committee on Commerce, as 
prescribed by Clause 1(e) of Rule X of the Rules of the House, 
is as follows:
(1) Biomedical research and development.
(2) Consumer affairs and consumer protection.
(3) Health and health facilities, except health care supported 
        by payroll deductions.
(4) Interstate energy compacts.
(5) Interstate and foreign commerce generally.
(6) Measures relating to the exploration, production, storage, 
        supply, marketing, pricing, and regulation of energy 
        resources, including all fossil fuels, solar energy, 
        and other unconventional or renewable energy resources.
(7) Measures relating to the conservation of energy resources.
(8) Measures relating to energy information generally.
(9) Measures relating to (A) the generation and marketing of 
        power (except by federally chartered or Federal 
        regional power marketing authorities), (B) the 
        reliability and interstate transmission of, and 
        ratemaking for, all power, and (C) the siting of 
        generation facilities; except the installation of 
        interconnections between Government waterpower 
        projects.
(10) Measures relating to general management of the Department 
        of Energy, and the management and all functions of the 
        Federal Energy Regulatory Commission.
(11) National energy policy generally.
(12) Public health and quarantine.
(13) Regulation of the domestic nuclear energy industry, 
        including regulation of research and development 
        reactors and nuclear regulatory research.
(14) Regulation of interstate and foreign communications.
(15) Securities and exchanges.
(16) Travel and tourism.

    The Committee shall have the same jurisdiction with respect 
to regulation of nuclear facilities and of use of nuclear 
energy as it has with respect to regulation of nonnuclear 
facilities and of use of nonnuclear energy. In addition to its 
legislative jurisdiction under the preceding provisions of this 
paragraph (and its general oversight functions under clause 
2(b)(1)), such committee shall have the special oversight 
functions provided for in clause (3)(h) with respect to all 
laws, programs, and Government activities affecting nuclear and 
other energy, and nonmilitary nuclear energy and research and 
development including the disposal of nuclear waste.
    In addition, pursuant to clause 3(h) of Rule X of the Rules 
of the House, the Committee on Commerce shall have the function 
of reviewing and studying, on a continuing basis, all laws, 
programs and government activities relating to nuclear and 
other energy, and nonmilitary nuclear energy and research and 
development including the disposal of nuclear waste.

  Rules for the Committee on Commerce, U.S. House of Representatives, 
                             105th Congress

Rule 1. General Provisions.
    (a) Rules of the Committee. The Rules of the House are the 
rules of the Committee on Commerce (hereinafter ``the 
Committee'') and its subcommittees so far as is applicable, 
except that a motion to recess from day to day, and a motion to 
dispense with the first reading (in full) of a bill or 
resolution, if printed copies are available, are nondebatable 
motions of high privilege in the Committee and its 
subcommittees.
    (b) Rules of the Subcommittees. Each subcommittee of the 
Committee is part of the Committee and is subject to the 
authority and direction of the Committee and to its rules so 
far as applicable. Written rules adopted by the Committee, not 
inconsistent with the Rules of the House, shall be binding on 
each subcommittee of the Committee.
Rule 2. Time and Place of Meetings.
    (a) Regular Meeting Days. The Committee shall meet on the 
fourth Tuesday of each month at 10 a.m., for the consideration 
of bills, resolutions, and other business, if the House is in 
session on that day. If the House is not in session on that day 
and the Committee has not met during such month, the Committee 
shall meet at the earliest practicable opportunity when the 
House is again in session. The chairman of the Committee may, 
at his discretion, cancel, delay, or defer any meeting required 
under this section, after consultation with the ranking 
minority member.
    (b)(1) Additional Meetings. The chairman may call and 
convene, as he considers necessary, additional meetings of the 
Committee for the consideration of any bill or resolution 
pending before the Committee or for the conduct of other 
Committee business. The Committee shall meet for such purposes 
pursuant to that call of the chairman.
    (2) Special Meetings. Special meetings shall be called and 
convened as provided in clause 2(c)(2) of Rule XI of the Rules 
of the House.
    (c) Vice Chairmen; Presiding Member. The chairman shall 
designate a member of the majority party to serve as vice 
chairman of the Committee, and shall designate a majority 
member of each subcommittee to serve as vice chairman of each 
subcommittee. The vice chairman of the Committee or 
subcommittee, as the case may be, shall preside at any meeting 
or hearing during the temporary absence of the chairman. If the 
chairman and vice chairman of the Committee or subcommittee are 
not present at any meeting or hearing, the ranking member of 
the majority party who is present shall preside at the meeting 
or hearing.
    (d) Open Meetings and Hearings. Each meeting of the 
Committee or any of its subcommittees for the transaction of 
business, including the markup of legislation, and each 
hearing, shall be open to the public including to radio, 
television and still photography coverage, consistent with the 
provisions of Rule XI of the Rules of the House. This paragraph 
does not apply to those special cases provided in the Rules of 
the House where closed sessions are otherwise provided.
Rule 3. Agenda.
    The agenda for each Committee or subcommittee meeting 
(other than a hearing), setting out the date, time, place, and 
all items of business to be considered, shall be provided to 
each member of the Committee at least 36 hours in advance of 
such meeting.
Rule 4. Procedure.
    (a)(1) Hearings. The date, time, place, and subject matter 
of any hearing of the Committee or any of its subcommittees 
shall be announced at least one week in advance of the 
commencement of such hearing, unless the Committee or 
subcommittee determines in accordance with clause 2(g)(3) of 
Rule XI of the Rules of the House that there is good cause to 
begin the hearing sooner.
    (2)(A) Meetings. The date, time, place, and subject matter 
of any meeting (other than a hearing) scheduled on a Tuesday, 
Wednesday, or Thursday when the House will be in session, shall 
be announced at least 36 hours (exclusive of Saturdays, 
Sundays, and legal holidays except when the House is in session 
on such days) in advance of the commencement of such meeting.
    (B) Other Meetings. The date, time, place, and subject 
matter of a meeting (other than a hearing or a meeting to which 
subparagraph (A) applies) shall be announced at least 72 hours 
in advance of the commencement of such meeting.
    (b)(1) Requirements for Testimony. Each witness who is to 
appear before the Committee or a subcommittee shall file with 
the clerk of the Committee, at least two working days in 
advance of his or her appearance, sufficient copies, as 
determined by the chairman of the Committee or a subcommittee, 
of a written statement of his or her proposed testimony to 
provide to members and staff of the Committee or subcommittee, 
the news media, and the general public. Each witness shall, to 
the greatest extent practicable, also provide a copy of such 
written testimony in an electronic format prescribed by the 
chairman. Each witness shall limit his or her oral presentation 
to a brief summary of the argument. The chairman of the 
Committee or of a subcommittee, or the presiding member, may 
waive the requirements of this paragraph or any part thereof.
    (2) Additional Requirements for Testimony. To the greatest 
extent practicable, for each witness appearing in a non-
governmental capacity, such written testimony required under 
paragraph (1) shall include a curriculum vitae and a disclosure 
of the amount and source (by agency and program) of any federal 
grant (or subgrant thereof) or contract (or subcontract 
thereof) received during the current fiscal year or either of 
the two preceding fiscal years by the witness or by an entity 
represented by the witness.
    (c) Questioning Witnesses. The right to interrogate the 
witnesses before the Committee or any of its subcommittees 
shall alternate between majority and minority members. Each 
member shall be limited to 5 minutes in the interrogation of 
witnesses until such time as each member who so desires has had 
an opportunity to question witnesses. No member shall be 
recognized for a second period of 5 minutes to interrogate a 
witness until each member of the Committee present has been 
recognized once for that purpose. While the Committee or 
subcommittee is operating under the 5-minute rule for the 
interrogation of witnesses, the chairman shall recognize in 
order of appearance members who were not present when the 
meeting was called to order after all members who were present 
when the meeting was called to order have been recognized in 
the order of seniority on the Committee or subcommittee, as the 
case may be.
    (d) Explanation of Subcommittee Action. No bill, 
recommendation, or other matter reported by a subcommittee 
shall be considered by the full Committee unless the text of 
the matter reported, together with an explanation, has been 
available to members of the Committee for at least 36 hours. 
Such explanation shall include a summary of the major 
provisions of the legislation, an explanation of the 
relationship of the matter to present law, and a summary of the 
need for the legislation. All subcommittee actions shall be 
reported promptly by the clerk of the Committee to all members 
of the Committee.
    (e) Opening Statements. Opening statements by members at 
the beginning of any hearing or markup of the Committee or any 
of its subcommittees shall be limited to 5 minutes each for the 
chairman and ranking minority member (or their respective 
designee) of the Committee or subcommittee, as applicable, and 
3 minutes each for all other members.
Rule 5. Waiver of Agenda, Notice, and Layover Requirements.
    Requirements of rules 3, 4(a)(2), and 4(d) may be waived by 
a majority of those present and voting (a majority being 
present) of the Committee or subcommittee, as the case may be.
Rule 6. Quorum.
    Testimony may be taken and evidence received at any hearing 
at which there are present not fewer than two members of the 
Committee or subcommittee in question. A majority of the 
members of the Committee shall constitute a quorum for the 
purposes of reporting any measure or matter, of authorizing a 
subpoena, or of closing a meeting or hearing pursuant to clause 
2(g) of Rule XI of the Rules of the House (except as provided 
in clause 2(g)(2)(A) and (B)). For the purposes of taking any 
action other than those specified in the preceding sentence, 
one-third of the members of the Committee or subcommittee shall 
constitute a quorum.
Rule 7. Prohibition Against Proxy Voting.
    No vote by any member of the Committee or a subcommittee 
with respect to any measure or matter may be cast by proxy.
Rule 8. Official Committee Records.
    (a)(1) Journal. The proceedings of the Committee shall be 
recorded in a journal which shall, among other things, show 
those present at each meeting, and include a record of the vote 
on any question on which a record vote is demanded and a 
description of the amendment, motion, order, or other 
proposition voted. A copy of the journal shall be furnished to 
the ranking minority member.
    (2) Rollcalls. A record vote may be demanded by one-fifth 
of the members present or, in the apparent absence of a quorum, 
by any one member. No demand for a rollcall shall be made or 
obtained except for the purpose of procuring a record vote or 
in the apparent absence of a quorum. The result of each 
rollcall vote in any meeting of the Committee shall be made 
available in the Committee office for inspection by the public, 
as provided in Rule XI, clause 2(e) of the Rules of the House.
    (b) Archived Records. The records of the Committee at the 
National Archives and Records Administration shall be made 
available for public use in accordance with Rule XXXVI of the 
Rules of the House. The chairman shall notify the ranking 
minority member of any decision, pursuant to clause 3 (b)(3) or 
clause 4 (b) of the Rule, to withhold a record otherwise 
available, and the matter shall be presented to the Committee 
for a determination on the written request of any member of the 
Committee. The chairman shall consult with the ranking minority 
member on any communication from the Archivist of the United 
States or the Clerk of the House concerning the disposition of 
noncurrent records pursuant to clause 3(b) of the Rule.
Rule 9. Committee Reports.
    (a) Supplemental, Minority, and Additional Views. If, at 
the time of approval of any measure or matter by the Committee, 
any member or members of the Committee should give notice of an 
intention to file supplemental, minority, or additional views, 
that member shall be entitled to not less than two subsequent 
calendar days (exclusive of Saturdays, Sundays, and legal 
holidays except when the House is in session on such days) in 
which to file such views in writing and signed by that member 
or members with the Committee. All such views so filed shall be 
included within and shall be part of the report filed by the 
Committee with respect to that measure or matter.
    (b) Investigative and Oversight Reports. A proposed 
investigative or oversight report shall be considered as read 
if it has been available to the members of the Committee for at 
least 24 hours (excluding Saturdays, Sundays, and legal 
holidays except when the House is in session on such days).
    (c) Filing of Investigative and Oversight Reports. After 
the adjournment of the last regular session of a Congress sine 
die, an investigative or oversight report may be filed with the 
Clerk of the House at any time, provided that if a member gives 
timely notice of intention to file supplemental, minority, or 
additional views, that member shall be entitled to not less 
than seven calendar days in which to submit such views for 
inclusion with the report.
    (d) Activity Reports. After an adjournment of the last 
regular session of a Congress sine die, the chairman of the 
Committee may file at any time with the Clerk of the House the 
Committee's activity report for that Congress pursuant to 
clause 1(d)(1) of Rule XI of the Rules of the House without the 
approval of the Committee, provided that a copy of the report 
has been available to each member of the Committee for at least 
seven calendar days and the report includes any supplemental, 
minority, or additional views submitted by a member of the 
Committee.
Rule 10. Subcommittees.
    There shall be such standing subcommittees with such 
jurisdiction and size as determined by the majority party 
caucus of the Committee. The jurisdiction, number, and size of 
the subcommittees shall be determined by the majority party 
caucus prior to the start of the process for establishing 
subcommittee chairmanships and assignments.
Rule 11. Powers and Duties of Subcommittees.
    Each subcommittee is authorized to meet, hold hearings, 
receive testimony, mark up legislation, and report to the 
Committee on all matters referred to it. Subcommittee chairmen 
shall set hearing and meeting dates only with the approval of 
the chairman of the Committee with a view toward assuring the 
availability of meeting rooms and avoiding simultaneous 
scheduling of Committee and subcommittee meetings or hearings 
wherever possible.
Rule 12. Reference of Legislation and Other Matters.
    All legislation and other matters referred to the Committee 
shall be referred to the subcommittee of appropriate 
jurisdiction within two weeks of the date of receipt by the 
Committee unless, by majority vote of the members of the 
Committee, consideration is to be by the full Committee. In the 
case of legislation or other matter within the jurisdiction of 
more than one subcommittee, the chairman of the Committee may, 
in his discretion, refer the matter simultaneously to two or 
more subcommittees for concurrent consideration, or may 
designate a subcommittee of primary jurisdiction and also refer 
the matter to one or more additional subcommittees for 
consideration in sequence (subject to appropriate time 
limitations), either on its initial referral or after the 
matter has been reported by the subcommittee of primary 
jurisdiction. Such authority shall include the authority to 
refer such legislation or matter to an ad hoc subcommittee 
appointed by the chairman, with the approval of the Committee, 
from the members of the subcommittee having legislative or 
oversight jurisdiction.
Rule 13. Ratio of Subcommittees.
    The majority caucus of the Committee shall determine an 
appropriate ratio of majority to minority party members for 
each subcommittee and the chairman shall negotiate that ratio 
with the minority party, provided that the ratio of party 
members on each subcommittee shall be no less favorable to the 
majority than that of the full Committee, nor shall such ratio 
provide for a majority of less than two majority members.
Rule 14. Subcommittee Membership.
    (a) Majority Party Membership. The majority party members 
of the standing subcommittees shall be selected by a process 
determined by the majority party members. The selection of 
majority party members of the standing subcommittees shall be 
conducted at a meeting of the majority party caucus of the 
Committee held prior to any organizational meeting of the 
Committee.
    (b) Minority Party Membership. The minority party members 
of the standing subcommittees shall be selected by a process 
determined by the minority party members. The selection of 
minority party members of the standing subcommittees shall be 
conducted prior to any organizational meeting of the Committee.
    (c) Ex Officio Members. The chairman and ranking minority 
member of the Committee shall be ex officio members with voting 
privileges of each subcommittee of which they are not assigned 
as members and may be counted for purposes of establishing a 
quorum in such subcommittees.
Rule 15. Subcommittee Chairmen.
    (a) Chairman's Nominations. The chairman shall nominate a 
slate of chairmen for the standing subcommittees. The 
chairman's slate shall be subject to approval by a majority of 
the majority party caucus of the Committee. If the chairman's 
initial slate is not approved by a majority, the chairman shall 
present an alternative slate of nominations until a slate is 
approved by a majority of the majority party caucus.
    (b) Managing Legislation on the House Floor. The chairman, 
in his discretion, shall designate which member shall manage 
legislation reported by the Committee to the House.
Rule 16. Committee Professional and Clerical Staff Appointments.
    (a) Delegation of Staff. Whenever the chairman of the 
Committee determines that any professional staff member 
appointed pursuant to the provisions of clause 6 of Rule XI of 
the House of Representatives, who is assigned to such chairman 
and not to the ranking minority member, by reason of such 
professional staff member's expertise or qualifications will be 
of assistance to one or more subcommittees in carrying out 
their assigned responsibilities, he may delegate such member to 
such subcommittees for such purpose. A delegation of a member 
of the professional staff pursuant to this subsection shall be 
made after consultation with subcommittee chairmen and with the 
approval of the subcommittee chairman or chairmen involved.
    (b) Minority Professional Staff. Professional staff members 
appointed pursuant to clause 6 of Rule XI of the House of 
Representatives, who are assigned to the ranking minority 
member of the Committee and not to the chairman of the 
Committee, shall be assigned to such Committee business as the 
minority party members of the Committee consider advisable.
    (c) Additional Staff Appointments. In addition to the 
professional staff appointed pursuant to clause 6 of Rule XI of 
the House of Representatives, the chairman of the Committee 
shall be entitled to make such appointments to the professional 
and clerical staff of the Committee as may be provided within 
the budget approved for such purposes by the Committee. Such 
appointee shall be assigned to such business of the full 
Committee as the chairman of the Committee considers advisable.
    (d) Sufficient Staff. The chairman shall ensure that 
sufficient staff is made available to each subcommittee to 
carry out its responsibilities under the rules of the 
Committee.
    (e) Fair Treatment of Minority Members in Appointment of 
Committee Staff. The chairman shall ensure that the minority 
members of the Committee are treated fairly in appointment of 
Committee staff.
    (f) Contracts for Temporary or Intermittent Services. Any 
contract for the temporary services or intermittent service of 
individual consultants or organizations to make studies or 
advise the Committee or its subcommittees with respect to any 
matter within their jurisdiction shall be deemed to have been 
approved by a majority of the members of the Committee if 
approved by the chairman and ranking minority member of the 
Committee. Such approval shall not be deemed to have been given 
if at least one-third of the members of the Committee request 
in writing that the Committee formally act on such a contract, 
if the request is made within 10 days after the latest date on 
which such chairman or chairmen, and such ranking minority 
member or members, approve such contract.
Rule 17. Supervision, Duties of Staff.
    (a) Supervision of Majority Staff. The professional and 
clerical staff of the Committee not delegated to the minority 
shall be under the supervision and direction of the chairman 
who, in consultation with the chairmen of the subcommittees, 
shall establish and assign the duties and responsibilities of 
such staff members and delegate such authority as he determines 
appropriate.
    (b) Supervision of Minority Staff. The professional and 
clerical staff assigned to the minority shall be under the 
supervision and direction of the minority members of the 
Committee, who may delegate such authority as they determine 
appropriate.
Rule 18. Committee Budget.
    (a) Preparation of Committee Budget. The chairman of the 
Committee, after consultation with the ranking minority member 
of the Committee and the chairmen of the subcommittees, shall 
for the 105th Congress prepare a preliminary budget for the 
Committee, with such budget including necessary amounts for 
professional and clerical staff, travel, investigations, 
equipment and miscellaneous expenses of the Committee and the 
subcommittees, and which shall be adequate to fully discharge 
the Committee's responsibilities for legislation and oversight. 
Such budget shall be presented by the chairman to the majority 
party caucus of the Committee and thereafter to the full 
Committee for its approval.
    (b) Approval of the Committee Budget. The chairman shall 
take whatever action is necessary to have the budget as finally 
approved by the Committee duly authorized by the House. No 
proposed Committee budget may be submitted to the Committee on 
House Oversight unless it has been presented to and approved by 
the majority party caucus and thereafter by the full Committee. 
The chairman of the Committee may authorize all necessary 
expenses in accordance with these rules and within the limits 
of the Committee's budget as approved by the House.
    (c) Monthly Expenditures Report. Committee members shall be 
furnished a copy of each monthly report, prepared by the 
chairman for the Committee on House Oversight, which shows 
expenditures made during the reporting period and cumulative 
for the year by the Committee and subcommittees, anticipated 
expenditures for the projected Committee program, and detailed 
information on travel.
Rule 19. Broadcasting of Committee Hearings.
    Any meeting or hearing that is open to the public may be 
covered in whole or in part by radio or television or still 
photography, subject to the requirements of Rule XI, clause 3, 
of the Rules of the House. The coverage of any hearing or other 
proceeding of the Committee or any subcommittee thereof by 
television, radio, or still photography shall be under the 
direct supervision of the chairman of the Committee, the 
subcommittee chairman, or other member of the Committee 
presiding at such hearing or other proceeding and may be 
terminated by such member in accordance with the Rules of the 
House.
Rule 20. Comptroller General Audits.
    The chairman of the Committee is authorized to request 
verification examinations by the Comptroller General of the 
United States pursuant to Title V, Part A of the Energy Policy 
and Conservation Act (Public Law 94-163), after consultation 
with the members of the Committee.
Rule 21. Subpoenas.
    The Committee, or any subcommittee, may authorize and issue 
a subpoena under clause 2(m)(2)(A) of Rule XI of the House, if 
authorized by a majority of the members voting of the Committee 
or subcommittee (as the case may be), a quorum being present. 
Authorized subpoenas may be issued over the signature of the 
chairman of the Committee or any member designated by the 
Committee, and may be served by any person designated by such 
chairman or member. The chairman of the Committee may authorize 
and issue subpoenas under such clause during any period for 
which the House has adjourned for a period in excess of 3 days 
when, in the opinion of the chairman, authorization and 
issuance of the subpoena is necessary to obtain the material 
set forth in the subpoena. The chairman shall report to the 
members of the Committee on the authorization and issuance of a 
subpoena during the recess period as soon as practicable but in 
no event later than one week after service of such subpoena.
Rule 22. Travel of Members and Staff.
    (a) Approval of Travel. Consistent with the primary expense 
resolution and the additional expense resolutions as may have 
been approved, the provisions of this rule shall govern travel 
of Committee members and staff. Travel to be reimbursed from 
funds set aside for the Committee for any member or any staff 
member shall be paid only upon the prior authorization of the 
chairman. Travel may be authorized by the chairman for any 
member and any staff member in connection with the attendance 
of hearings conducted by the Committee or any subcommittee 
thereof and meetings, conferences, and investigations which 
involve activities or subject matter under the general 
jurisdiction of the Committee. Before such authorization is 
given there shall be submitted to the chairman in writing the 
following: (1) the purpose of the travel; (2) the dates during 
which the travel is to be made and the date or dates of the 
event for which the travel is being made; (3) the location of 
the event for which the travel is to be made; and (4) the names 
of members and staff seeking authorization.
    (b) Approval of Travel by Minority Members and Staff. In 
the case of travel by minority party members and minority party 
professional staff for the purpose set out in (a), the prior 
approval, not only of the chairman but also of the ranking 
minority member, shall be required. Such prior authorization 
shall be given by the chairman only upon the representation by 
the ranking minority member in writing setting forth those 
items enumerated in (1), (2), (3), and (4) of paragraph (a).

 Rule XI, Clauses 2 and 3 of the Rules of the House of Representatives 
                         for the 105th Congress

                            january 1, 1998

               RULE XI: RULES OF PROCEDURE FOR COMMITTEES

                       Clause 2: Committee Rules

Adoption of written rules
    2. (a) Each standing committee of the House shall adopt 
written rules governing its procedure. Such rules--

(1) shall be adopted in a meeting which is open to the public 
        unless the committee, in open session and with a quorum 
        present, determined by rollcall vote that all or part 
        of the meeting on that day is to be closed to the 
        public;
(2) shall be not inconsistent with the Rules of the House or 
        with those provisions of law having the force and 
        effect of Rules of the House; and
(3) shall in any event incorporate all of the succeeding 
        provisions of this clause to the extent applicable.
Each committee's rules specifying its regular meeting days, and 
any other rules of a committee which are in addition to the 
provisions of this clause, shall be published in the 
Congressional Record not later than thirty days after the 
committee is elected in each odd-numbered year. Each select or 
joint committee shall comply with the provisions of this 
paragraph unless specifically prohibited by law.
Regular meeting days
    (b) Each standing committee of the House shall adopt 
regular meeting days, which shall be not less frequent than 
monthly, for the conduct of its business. Each such committee 
shall meet, for the consideration of any bill or resolution 
pending before the committee or for the transaction of other 
committee business, on all regular meeting days fixed by the 
committee, unless otherwise provided by written rule adopted by 
the committee.
Additional and special meetings
    (c)(1) The Chairman of each standing committee may call and 
convene, as he or she considers necessary, additional meetings 
of the committee for the consideration of any bill or 
resolution pending before the committee or for the conduct of 
other committee business. The committee shall meet for such 
purpose pursuant to that call of the chairman.
    (2) If at least three members of any standing committee 
desire that a special meeting of the committee be called by the 
chairman, those members may file in the offices of the 
committee their written request to the chairman for that 
special meeting. Such request shall specify the measure or 
matter to be considered. Immediately upon the filing of the 
request, the clerk of the committee shall notify the chairman 
of the filing of the request. If, within three calendar days 
after the filing of the request, the chairman does not call the 
requested special meeting, to be held within seven calendar 
days after the filing of the request, a majority of the members 
of the committee may file in the offices of the committee their 
written notice that a special meeting of the committee will be 
held, specifying the date and hour of, and the measure or 
matter to be considered at, that special meeting. The committee 
shall meet on that date and hour. Immediately upon the filing 
of the notice, the clerk of the committee shall notify all 
members of the committee that such special meeting will be held 
and inform them of its date and hour and the measure or matter 
to be considered; and only the measure or matter specified in 
that notice may be considered at that special meeting.
Vice chairman or ranking majority member to preside in absence of 
        chairman
    (d) A member of the majority party on any standing 
committee or subcommittee thereof designated by the chairman of 
the full committee shall be vice chairman of the committee or 
subcommittee, as the case may be, and shall preside at any 
meeting during the temporary absence of the chairman. If the 
chairman and vice chairman of the committee or subcommittee are 
not present at any meeting of the committee or subcommittee, 
the ranking member of the majority party who is present shall 
preside at that meeting.
Committee records
    (e)(1) Each committee shall keep a complete record of all 
committee action which shall include--

(A) in the case of any meeting or hearing transcript, a 
        substantially verbatim account of remarks actually made 
        during the proceedings, subject only to technical, 
        grammatical, and typographical corrections authorized 
        by the person making the remarks involved; and
(B) a record of the votes on any question on which a rollcall 
        vote is demanded. The result of each such rollcall vote 
        shall be made available by the committee for inspection 
        by the public at reasonable times in the offices of the 
        committee. Information so available for public 
        inspection shall include a description of the 
        amendment, motion, order, or other proposition and the 
        name of each Member voting for and each Member voting 
        against such amendment, motion, order, or proposition, 
        and the names of those Members present but not voting.
    (2) All committee hearings, records, data, charts, and 
files shall be kept separate and distinct from the 
congressional office records of the Member serving as chairman 
of the committee; and such records shall be the property of the 
House and all Members of the House shall have access thereto, 
except that in the case of records in the Committee on 
Standards of Official Conduct respecting the conduct of any 
Member, officer, or employee of the House, no Member of the 
House (other than a member of such committee) shall have access 
thereto without the specific, prior approval of the committee.
    (3) Each committee shall include in its rules standards for 
availability of records of the committee delivered to the 
Archivist of the United States under rule XXXVI. Such standards 
shall specify procedures for orders of the committee under 
clause 3(b)(3) and clause 4(b) of rule XXXVI, including a 
requirement that nonavailability of a record for a period 
longer than the period otherwise applicable under that rule 
shall be approved by vote of the committee.
    (4) Each committee shall, to the maximum extent feasible, 
make its publications available in electronic form.
Prohibition against proxy voting
    (f) No vote by any member of any committee or subcommittee 
with respect to any measure or matter may be cast by proxy. 
Open meetings and hearings
    (g)(1) Each meeting for the transaction of business, 
including the markup of legislation, of each standing committee 
or subcommittee thereof (except the Committee on Standards of 
Official Conduct) shall be open to the public, including to 
radio, television, and still photography coverage, except as 
provided by clause 3(f)(2), except when the committee or 
subcommittee, in open session and with a majority present, 
determines by rollcall vote that all or part of the remainder 
of the meeting on that day shall be closed to the public 
because disclosure of matters to be considered would endanger 
national security, would compromise sensitive law enforcement 
information, would tend to defame, degrade or incriminate any 
person, or otherwise would violate any law or rule of the 
House: Provided, however, That no person other than members of 
the committee and such congressional staff and such 
departmental representatives as they may authorize shall be 
present at any business or markup session which has been closed 
to the public. This paragraph does not apply to open committee 
hearings which are provided for by clause 4(a)(1) of rule X or 
by subparagraph (2) of this paragraph.
    (2) Each hearing conducted by each committee or 
subcommittee thereof (except the Committee on Standards of 
Official Conduct) shall be open to the public, including to 
radio, television, and still photography coverage, except when 
the committee or subcommittee, in open session and with a 
majority present, determines by rollcall vote that all or part 
of the remainder of that hearing on that day shall be closed to 
the public because disclosure of testimony, evidence, or other 
matters to be considered would endanger the national security, 
would compromise sensitive law enforcement information, or 
would violate any law or rule of the House of Representatives. 
Notwithstanding the requirements of the preceding sentence, a 
majority of those present, there being in attendance the 
requisite number required under the rules of the committee to 
be present for the purpose of taking testimony,
        (A) may vote to close the hearing for the sole purpose 
        of discussing whether testimony or evidence to be 
        received would endanger the national security, would 
        compromise sensitive law enforcement information, or 
        violate clause 2(k)(5) of rule XI; or
        (B) may vote to close the hearing, as provided in 
        clause 2(k)(5) of rule XI.
No Member may be excluded from nonparticipatory attendance at 
any hearing of any committee or subcommittee, with the 
exception of the Committee on Standards of Official Conduct, 
unless the House of Representatives shall by majority vote 
authorize a particular committee or subcommittee, for purposes 
of a particular series of hearings on a particular article of 
legislation or on a particular subject of investigation, to 
close its hearings to Members by the same procedures designated 
in this subparagraph for closing hearings to the public: 
Provided, however, That the committee or subcommittee may by 
the same procedure vote to close one subsequent day of hearing 
except that the Committee on Appropriations, the Committee on 
National Security, and the Permanent Select Committee on 
Intelligence and the subcommittees therein may, by the same 
procedure, vote to close up to five additional consecutive days 
of hearings.
    (3) The chairman of each committee of the House (except the 
Committee on Rules) shall make public announcement of the date, 
place, and subject matter of any committee hearing at least one 
week before the commencement of the hearing. If the chairman of 
the committee, with the concurrence of the ranking minority 
member, determines there is good cause to begin the hearing 
sooner, or if the committee so determines by majority vote, a 
quorum being present for the transaction of business, the 
chairman shall make the announcement at the earliest possible 
date. Any announcement made under this subparagraph shall be 
promptly published in the Daily Digest and promptly entered 
into the committee scheduling service of House Information 
Resources.
    (4) Each committee shall, to the greatest extent 
practicable, require witnesses who appear before it to submit 
in advance written statements of proposed testimony and to 
limit their initial oral presentations to the committee to 
brief summaries thereof. In the case of a witness appearing in 
a nongovernmental capacity, a written statement of proposed 
testimony shall include a curriculum vitae and a disclosure of 
the amount and source (by agency and program) of any Federal 
grant (or subgrant thereof) or contract (or subcontract 
thereof) received during the current fiscal year or either of 
the two previous fiscal years by the witness or by an entity 
represented by the witness.
    (5) No point of order shall lie with respect to any measure 
reported by any committee on the ground that hearings on such 
measure were not conducted in accordance with the provisions of 
this clause; except that a point of order on that ground may be 
made by any member of the committee which reported the measure 
if, in the committee, such point of order was (A) timely made 
and (B) improperly overruled or not properly considered.
    (6) The preceding provisions of this paragraph do not apply 
to the committee hearings which are provided for by clause 
4(a)(1) of rule X.
Quorum for taking testimony and certain other action
    (h)(1) Each committee may fix the number of its members to 
constitute a quorum for taking testimony and receiving evidence 
which shall be not less than two.
    (2) Each committee (except the Committee on Appropriations, 
the Committee on the Budget, and the Committee on Ways and 
Means) may fix the number of its members to constitute a quorum 
for taking any action other than the reporting of a measure or 
recommendation which shall be not less than one-third of the 
members.
Limitation on committees' sittings
    (i) No committee of the House may sit during a joint 
session of the House and Senate or during a recess when a joint 
meeting of the House and Senate is in progress.
Calling and interrogation of witnesses
    (j)(1) Whenever any hearing is conducted by any committee 
upon any measure or matter, the minority party members on the 
committee shall be entitled, upon request to the chairman by a 
majority of them before the completion of the hearing, to call 
witnesses selected by the minority to testify with respect to 
that measure or matter during at least one day of hearing 
thereon.
    (2) (A) Subject to subdivisions (B) and (C), each committee 
shall apply the five-minute rule in the interrogation of 
witnesses in any hearing until such time as each member of the 
committee who so desires has had an opportunity to question 
each witness.
    (B) A committee may adopt a rule or motion permitting an 
equal number of its majority and minority party members each to 
question a witness for a specified period not longer than 30 
minutes.
    (C) A committee may adopt a rule or motion permitting 
committee staff for its majority and minority party members to 
question a witness for equal specified periods.
Investigative hearing procedures
    (k)(1) The chairman at an investigative hearing shall 
announce in an opening statement the subject of the 
investigation.
    (2) A copy of the committee rules and this clause shall be 
made available to each witness.
    (3) Witnesses at investigative hearings may be accompanied 
by their own counsel for the purpose of advising them 
concerning their constitutional rights.
    (4) The chairman may punish breaches of order and decorum, 
and of professional ethics on the part of counsel, by censure 
and exclusion from the hearings; and the committee may cite the 
offender to the House for contempt.
    (5) Whenever it is asserted that the evidence or testimony 
at an investigatory hearing may tend to defame, degrade, or 
incriminate any person,
          (A) such testimony or evidence shall be presented in 
        executive session, notwithstanding the provisions of 
        clause 2(g)(2) of this rule, if by a majority of those 
        present, there being in attendance the requisite number 
        required under the rules of the committee to be present 
        for the purpose of taking testimony, the committee 
        determines that such evidence or testimony may tend to 
        defame, degrade, or incriminate any person; and
          (B) the committee shall proceed to receive such 
        testimony in open session only if the committee, a 
        majority being present, determines that such evidence 
        or testimony will not tend to defame, degrade, or 
        incriminate any person.
In either case the committee shall afford such person an 
opportunity voluntarily to appear as a witness, and receive and 
dispose of requests from such person to subpoena additional 
witnesses.
    (6) Except as provided in subparagraph (5), the chairman 
shall receive and the committee shall dispose of requests to 
subpoena additional witnesses.
    (7) No evidence or testimony taken in executive session may 
be released or used in public sessions without the consent of 
the committee.
    (8) In the discretion of the committee, witnesses may 
submit brief and pertinent sworn statements in writing for 
inclusion in the record. The committee is the sole judge of the 
pertinency of testimony and evidence adduced at its hearing.
    (9) A witness may obtain a transcript copy of his testimony 
given at a public session or, if given at an executive session, 
when authorized by the committee.
Committee procedures for reporting bills and resolutions
    (l)(1)(A) It shall be the duty of the chairman of each 
committee to report or cause to be reported promptly to the 
House any measure approved by the committee and to take or 
cause to be taken necessary steps to bring a matter to a vote.
    (B) In any event, the report of any committee on a measure 
which has been approved by the committee shall be filed within 
seven calendar days (exclusive of days on which the House is 
not in session) after the day on which there has been filed 
with the clerk of the committee a written request, signed by a 
majority of the members of the committee, for the reporting of 
that measure. Upon the filing of any such request, the clerk of 
the committee shall transmit immediately to the chairman of the 
committee notice of the filing of that request. This 
subdivision does not apply to a report of the Committee on 
Rules with respect to the rules, joint rules, or order of 
business of the House or to the reporting of a resolution of 
inquiry addressed to the head of an executive department.
    (2)(A) No measure or recommendation shall be reported from 
any committee unless a majority of the committee was actually 
present.
    (B) With respect to each rollcall vote on a motion to 
report any measure or matter of a public character, and on any 
amendment offered to the measure or matter, the total number of 
votes cast for and against, and the names of those members 
voting for and against, shall be included in the committee 
report on the measure or matter. The preceding sentence shall 
not apply to votes taken in executive session by the Committee 
on Standards of Official Conduct.
    (3) The report of any committee on a measure which has been 
approved by the committee shall include (A) the oversight 
findings and recommendations required pursuant to clause 
2(b)(1) of rule X separately set out and clearly identified; 
(B) the statement required by section 308(a)(1) of the 
Congressional Budget Act of l974, separately set out and 
clearly identified, if the measure provides new budget 
authority (other than continuing appropriations), new 
entitlement authority as defined in section 3(9) of such Act, 
new credit authority, or an increase or decrease in revenues or 
tax expenditures, except that the estimates with respect to new 
budget authority shall include, when practicable, a comparison 
of the total estimated funding level for the relevant program 
(or programs) to the appropriate levels under current law; (C) 
the estimate and comparison prepared by the Director of the 
Congressional Budget Office under section 402 of such Act, 
separately set out and clearly identified, whenever the 
Director (if timely submitted prior to the filing of the 
report) has submitted such estimate and comparison to the 
committee; and (D) a summary of the oversight findings and 
recommendations made by the Committee on Government Reform and 
Oversight under clause 4(c)(2) of rule X separately set out and 
clearly identified whenever such findings and recommendations 
have been submitted to the legislative committee in a timely 
fashion to allow an opportunity to consider such findings and 
recommendations during the committee's deliberations on the 
measure.
    (4) Each report of a committee on a bill or joint 
resolution of a public character shall include a statement 
citing the specific powers granted to the Congress in the 
Constitution to enact the law proposed by the bill or joint 
resolution.
    (5) If, at the time of approval of any measure or matter by 
any committee, other than the Committee on Rules, any member of 
the committee gives notice of intention to file supplemental, 
minority, or additional views, that member shall be entitled to 
not less than two additional calendar days after the day of 
such notice (excluding Saturdays, Sundays, or legal holidays 
except when the House is in session on such a day) in which to 
file such views, in writing and signed by that member, with the 
clerk of the committee. All such views so filed by one or more 
members of the committee shall be included within, and shall be 
a part of, the report filed by the committee with respect to 
that measure or matter. When time guaranteed by this 
subparagraph has expired (or, if sooner, when all separate 
views have been received), the committee may arrange to file 
its report with the Clerk not later than one hour after the 
expiration of such time. The report of the committee upon that 
measure or matter shall be printed in a single volume which--
          (A) shall include all supplemental, minority, or 
        additional views which have been submitted by the time 
        of the filing of the report, and
          (B) shall bear upon its cover a recital that any such 
        supplemental, minority, or additional views (and any 
        material submitted under subdivisions (C) and (D) of 
        subparagraph (3)) are included as part of the report.
    This subparagraph does not preclude--
          (i) the immediate filing or printing of a committee 
        report unless timely request for the opportunity to 
        file supplemental, minority, or additional views has 
        been made as provided by this subparagraph; or
          (ii) the filing by any such committee of any 
        supplemental report upon any measure or matter which 
        may be required for the correction of any technical 
        error in a previous report made by that committee upon 
        that measure or matter.
    (6) A measure or matter reported by any committee (except 
the Committee on Rules in the case of a resolution making in 
order the consideration of a bill, resolution, or other order 
of business), shall not be considered in the House until the 
third calendar day (excluding Saturdays, Sundays, or legal 
holidays except when the House is in session on such a day) on 
which the report of that committee upon that measure or matter 
has been available to the Members of the House, Provided, 
however, That it shall always be in order to call up for 
consideration, notwithstanding the provisions of clause 4(b) of 
rule XI, a report from the Committee on Rules specifically 
providing for the consideration of a reported measure or matter 
notwithstanding this restriction. If hearings have been held on 
any such measure or matter so reported, the committee reporting 
the measure or matter shall make every reasonable effort to 
have such hearings printed and available for distribution to 
the Members of the House prior to the consideration of such 
measure or matter in the House. This subparagraph shall not 
apply to--
          (A) any measure for the declaration of war, or the 
        declaration of a national emergency, by the Congress; 
        or
          (B) any decision, determination, or action by a 
        Government agency which would become or continue to be, 
        effective unless disapproved or otherwise invalidated 
        by one or both Houses of Congress.
For the purposes of the preceding sentence, a Government agency 
includes any department, agency, establishment, wholly owned 
Government corporation, or instrumentality of the Federal 
Government or the government of the District of Columbia.
    (7) If, within seven calendar days after a measure has, by 
resolution, been made in order for consideration by the House, 
no motion has been offered that the House consider that 
measure, any member of the committee which reported that 
measure may be recognized in the discretion of the Speaker to 
offer a motion that the House shall consider that measure, if 
that committee has duly authorized that member to offer that 
motion.
Power to sit and act; subpoena power
    (m)(1) For the purpose of carrying out any of its functions 
and duties under this rule and rule X (including any matters 
referred to it under clause 5 of rule X), any committee, or any 
subcommittee thereof, is authorized (subject to subparagraph 
(2)(A) of this paragraph)--
          (A) to sit and act at such times and places within 
        the United States, whether the House is in session, has 
        recessed, or has adjourned, and to hold such hearings, 
        and
          (B) to require, by subpoena or otherwise, the 
        attendance and testimony of such witnesses and the 
        production of such books, records, correspondence, 
        memorandums, papers, and documents as it deems 
        necessary.
The chairman of the committee, or any member designated by such 
chairman, may administer oaths to any witness.
    (2)(A) A subpoena may be authorized and issued by a 
committee or subcommittee under subparagraph (1)(B) in the 
conduct of any investigation or series of investigations or 
activities, only when authorized by a majority of the members 
voting, a majority being present. The power to authorize and 
issue subpoenas under subparagraph (1)(B) may be delegated to 
the chairman of the committee pursuant to such rules and under 
such limitations as the committee may prescribe. Authorized 
subpoenas shall be signed by the chairman of the committee or 
by any member designated by the committee.
    (B) Compliance with any subpoena issued by a committee or 
subcommittee under subparagraph (1)(B) may be enforced only as 
authorized or directed by the House.
Use of committee funds for travel
    (n)(1) Funds authorized for a committee under clause 5 are 
for expenses incurred in the committee's activities; however, 
local currencies owned by the United States shall be made 
available to the committee and its employees engaged in 
carrying out their official duties outside the United States, 
its territories or possessions. No appropriated funds, 
including those authorized under clause 5, shall be expended 
for the purpose of defraying expenses of members of the 
committee or its employees in any country where local 
currencies are available for this purpose; and the following 
conditions shall apply with respect to travel outside the 
United States or its territories or possessions:
          (A) No member or employee of the committee shall 
        receive or expend local currencies for subsistence in 
        any country for any day at a rate in excess of the 
        maximum per diem set forth in applicable Federal law, 
        or if the Member or employee is reimbursed for any 
        expenses for such day, then the lesser of the per diem 
        or the actual, unreimbursed expenses (other than for 
        transportation) incurred by the Member or employee 
        during that day.
          (B) Each member or employee of the committee shall 
        make to the chairman of the committee an itemized 
        report showing the dates each country was visited, the 
        amount of per diem furnished, the cost of 
        transportation furnished, any funds expended for any 
        other official purpose and shall summarize in these 
        categories the total foreign currencies and/or 
        appropriated funds expended. All such individual 
        reports shall be filed no later than sixty days 
        following the completion of travel with the chairman of 
        the committee for use in complying with reporting 
        requirements in applicable Federal law and shall be 
        open for public inspection.
    (2) In carrying out the committee's activities outside of 
the United States in any country where local currencies are 
unavailable, a member or employee of the committee may not 
receive reimbursement for expenses (other than for 
transportation) in excess of the maximum per diem set forth in 
applicable Federal law, or if the member or employee is 
reimbursed for any expenses for such day, then the lesser of 
the per diem or the actual unreimbursed expenses (other than 
for transportation) incurred, by the member or employee during 
any day.
    (3) A member or employee of a committee may not receive 
reimbursement for the cost of any transportation in connection 
with travel outside of the United States unless the member or 
employee has actually paid for the transportation.
    (4) The restrictions respecting travel outside of the 
United States set forth in subparagraphs (2) and (3) shall also 
apply to travel outside of the United States by Members, 
officers, and employees of the House authorized under clause 8 
of rule I, clause 1(b) of this rule, or any other provision of 
these Rules of the House of Representatives.
    (5) No local currencies owned by the United States may be 
made available under this paragraph for the use outside of the 
United States for defraying the expenses of a member of any 
committee after--
          (A) the date of the general election of Members in 
        which the Member has not been elected to the succeeding 
        Congress; or
          (B) in the case of a Member who is not a candidate in 
        such general election, the earlier of the date of such 
        general election or the adjournment sine die of the 
        last regular session of the Congress.

       Clause 3: Broadcasting of Committee Hearings and Meetings

    3. (a) It is the purpose of this clause to provide a means, 
in conformity with acceptable standards of dignity, propriety, 
and decorum, by which committee hearings, or committee 
meetings, which are open to the public may be covered, by 
television broadcast, radio broadcast, and still photography, 
or by any of such methods of coverage--
          (1) for the education, enlightenment, and information 
        of the general public, on the basis of accurate and 
        impartial news coverage, regarding the operations, 
        procedures, and practices of the House as a legislative 
        and representative body and regarding the measures, 
        public issues, and other matters before the House and 
        its committees, the consideration thereof, and the 
        action taken thereon; and
          (2) for the development of the perspective and 
        understanding of the general public with respect to the 
        role and function of the House under the Constitution 
        of the United States as an organ of the Federal 
        Government.
    (b) In addition, it is the intent of this clause that radio 
and television tapes and television film of any coverage under 
this clause shall not be used, or made available for use, as 
partisan political campaign material to promote or oppose the 
candidacy of any person for elective public office.
    (c) It is, further, the intent of this clause that the 
general conduct of each meeting (whether of a hearing or 
otherwise) covered, under authority of this clause, by 
television broadcast, radio broadcast, and still photography, 
or by any of such methods of coverage, and the personal 
behavior of the committee members and staff, other Government 
officials and personnel, witnesses, television, radio, and 
press media personnel, and the general public at the hearing or 
other meeting shall be in strict conformity with and observance 
of the acceptable standards of dignity, propriety, courtesy, 
and decorum traditionally observed by the House in its 
operations and shall not be such as to--
          (1) distort the objects and purposes of the hearing 
        or other meeting or the activities of committee members 
        in connection with that hearing or meeting or in 
        connection with the general work of the committee or of 
        the House; or
          (2) cast discredit or dishonor on the House, the 
        committee, or any Member or bring the House, the 
        committee, or any Member into disrepute.
    (d) The coverage of committee hearings and meetings by 
television broadcast, radio broadcast, or still photography 
shall be permitted and conducted only in strict conformity with 
the purposes, provisions, and requirements of this clause.
    (e) Whenever a hearing or meeting conducted by any 
committee or subcommittee of the House is open to the public, 
those proceedings shall be open to coverage by television, 
radio, and still photography, except as provided in paragraph 
(f)(2). A committee or subcommittee chairman may not limit the 
number of television or still cameras to fewer than two 
representatives from each medium (except for legitimate space 
or safety considerations, in which case pool coverage shall be 
authorized).
    (f) Each committee of the House shall adopt written rules 
to govern its implementation of this clause. Such rules shall 
include provisions to the following effect:
          (1) If the television or radio coverage of the 
        hearing or meeting is to be presented to the public as 
        live coverage, that coverage shall be conducted and 
        presented without commercial sponsorship.
          (2) The allocation among the television media of the 
        positions of the number of television cameras permitted 
        by a committee or subcommittee chairman in a hearing or 
        meeting room shall be in accordance with fair and 
        equitable procedures devised by the Executive Committee 
        of the Radio and Television Correspondents' Galleries.
          (3) Television cameras shall be placed so as not to 
        obstruct in any way the space between any witness 
        giving evidence or testimony and any member of the 
        committee or the visibility of that witness and that 
        member to each other.
          (4) Television cameras shall operate from fixed 
        positions but shall not be placed in positions which 
        obstruct unnecessarily the coverage of the hearing or 
        meeting by the other media.
          (5) Equipment necessary for coverage by the 
        television and radio media shall not be installed in, 
        or removed from, the hearing or meeting room while the 
        committee is in session.
          (6) Floodlights, spotlights, strobelights, and 
        flashguns shall not be used in providing any method of 
        coverage of the hearing or meeting, except that the 
        television media may install additional lighting in the 
        hearing or meeting room, without cost to the 
        Government, in order to raise the ambient lighting 
        level in the hearing or meeting room to the lowest 
        level necessary to provide adequate television coverage 
        of the hearing or meeting at the then current state of 
        the art of television coverage.
          (7) In the allocation of the number of still 
        photographers permitted by a committee or subcommittee 
        chairman in a hearing or meeting room, preference shall 
        be given to photographers from Associated Press Photos 
        and United Press International Newspictures. If 
        requests are made by more of the media than will be 
        permitted by a committee or subcommittee chairman for 
        coverage of the hearing or meeting by still 
        photography, that coverage shall be made on the basis 
        of a fair and equitable pool arrangement devised by the 
        Standing Committee of Press Photographers.
          (8) Photographers shall not position themselves, at 
        any time during the course of the hearing or meeting, 
        between the witness table and the members of the 
        committee.
          (9) Photographers shall not place themselves in 
        positions which obstruct unnecessarily the coverage of 
        the hearing by the other media.
          (10) Personnel providing coverage by the television 
        and radio media shall be then currently accredited to 
        the Radio and Television Correspondents' Galleries.
          (11) Personnel providing coverage by still 
        photography shall be then currently accredited to the 
        Press Photographers' Gallery.
          (12) Personnel providing coverage by the television 
        and radio media and by still photography shall conduct 
        themselves and their coverage activities in an orderly 
        and unobtrusive manner.

        MEMBERSHIP AND ORGANIZATION OF THE COMMITTEE ON COMMERCE

                       ONE HUNDRED FIFTH CONGRESS

                             (Ratio: 28-23)

                     TOM BLILEY, Virginia, Chairman

W.J. ``BILLY'' TAUZIN, Louisiana     JOHN D. DiNGELL, Michigan
MICHAEL G. OXLEY, Ohio               HENRY A. WAXMAN, California
MICHAEL BILIRAKIS, Florida           EDWARD J. MARKEY, Massachusetts
DAN SCHAEFER, Colorado               RALPH M. HALL, Texas
JOE BARTON, Texas                    RICK BOUCHER, Virginia
J. DENNIS HASTERT, Illinois          THOMAS J. MANTON, New York
FRED UPTON, Michigan                 EDOLPHUS TOWNS, New York
CLIFF STEARNS, Florida               FRANK PALLONE, Jr., New Jersey \1\
BILL PAXON, New York                 SHERROD BROWN, Ohio
PAUL E. GILLMOR, Ohio                BART GORDON, Tennessee
  Vice Chairman                      ELIZABETH FURSE, Oregon
JAMES C. GREENWOOD, Pennsylvania     PETER DEUTSCH, Florida
MICHAEL D. CRAPO, Idaho              BOBBY L. RUSH, Illinois
CHRISTOPHER COX, California          ANNA G. ESHOO, California
NATHAN DEAL, Georgia                 RON KLINK, Pennsylvania
STEVE LARGENT, Oklahoma              BART STUPAK, Michigan
RICHARD BURR, North Carolina         ELIOT L. ENGEL, New York
BRIAN P. BILBRAY, California         THOMAS C. SAWYER, Ohio
ED WHITFIELD, Kentucky               ALBERT R. WYNN, Maryland
GREG GANSKE, Iowa                    GENE GREEN, Texas
CHARLIE NORWOOD, Georgia             KAREN McCARTHY, Missouri
RICK WHITE, Washington               TED STRICKLAND, Ohio
TOM COBURN, Oklahoma                 DIANA DeGETTE, Colorado
RICK LAZIO, New York
BARBARA CUBIN, Wyoming
JAMES E. ROGAN, California
JOHN SHIMKUS, Illinois
HEATHER WILSON, New Mexico \2\
                               __________
*Representative Bill Richardson (D-NM) resigned as a Member of the 
House of Representatives on February 13, 1997; he was subsequently 
sworn in as the United States Ambassador to the United Nations on that 
same date.
\1\ Representative Frank Pallone, Jr. (D-NJ) was elected to the 
Committee on Commerce for the 105th Congress on February 13, 1997, 
pursuant to H. Res. 58, which passed the House on February 13, 1997. 
Previously, Mr. Pallone had been on sabbatical leave from the Committee 
since the beginning of the 105th Congress.
**Representative Scott L. Klug (R-WI) resigned as a Member of the 
Committee on Commerce on August 3, 1998.
\2\ Representative Heather Wilson (R-NM) was elected to the Committee 
on Commerce for the 105th Congress on August 3, 1998, pursuant to H. 
Res. 515, which passed the House on August 3, 1998.

               SUBCOMMITTEE MEMBERSHIPS AND JURISDICTION

   Subcommittee on Telecommunications, Trade, and Consumer Protection

                             (Ratio: 16-13)

               W.J. ``BILLY'' TAUZIN, Louisiana, Chairman

MICHAEL G. OXLEY, Ohio               EDWARD J. MARKEY, Massachusetts
  Vice Chairman                      RICK BOUCHER, Virginia
DAN SCHAEFER, Colorado               BART GORDON, Tennessee
JOE BARTON, Texas                    ELIOT L. ENGEL, New York
J. DENNIS HASTERT, Illinois          THOMAS C. SAWYER, Ohio
FRED UPTON, Michigan                 THOMAS J. MANTON, New York
CLIFF STEARNS, Florida               BOBBY L. RUSH, Illinois
PAUL E. GILLMOR, Ohio                ANNA G. ESHOO, California
CHRISTOPHER COX, California          RON KLINK, Pennsylvania
NATHAN DEAL, Georgia                 ALBERT R. WYNN, Maryland
STEVE LARGENT, Oklahoma              GENE GREEN, Texas
RICK WHITE, Washington               KAREN McCARTHY, Missouri
JAMES E. ROGAN, California           JOHN D. DINGELL, Michigan
JOHN SHIMKUS, Illinois                 (Ex Officio)
HEATHER WILSON, New Mexico
TOM BLILEY, Virginia
  (Ex Officio)

Jurisdiction: Interstate and foreign telecommunications including, but 
not limited to all telecommunication and information transmission by 
broadcast, radio, wire, microwave, satellite, or other mode; interstate 
and foreign commerce, including trade matters within the jurisdiction 
of the full committee; regulation of commercial practices (the FTC); 
consumer affairs and consumer protection in general; consumer product 
safety (the CPSC); product liability; and motor vehicle safety.

            Subcommittee on Finance and Hazardous Materials

                             (Ratio: 15-12)

                    MICHAEL G. OXLEY, Ohio, Chairman

W.J. ``BILLY'' TAUZIN, Louisiana     THOMAS J. MANTON, New York
  Vice Chairman                      BART STUPAK, Michigan
BILL PAXON, New York                 ELIOT L. ENGEL, New York
PAUL E. GILLMOR, Ohio                THOMAS C. SAWYER, Ohio
JAMES C. GREENWOOD, Pennsylvania     TED STRICKLAND, Ohio
MICHAEL D. CRAPO, Idaho              DIANA DeGETTE, Colorado
NATHAN DEAL, Georgia                 EDWARD J. MARKEY, Massachusetts
STEVE LARGENT, Oklahoma              RALPH M. HALL, Texas
BRIAN P. BILBRAY, California         EDOLPHUS TOWNS, New York
GREG GANSKE, Iowa                    FRANK PALLONE, Jr., New Jersey
RICK WHITE, Washington               ELIZABETH FURSE, Oregon
RICK LAZIO, New York                 JOHN D. DINGELL, Michigan
BARBARA CUBIN, Wyoming                 (Ex Officio)
HEATHER WILSON, New Mexico
TOM BLILEY, Virginia
  (Ex Officio)

Jurisdiction: Securities, exchanges, and finance; solid waste, 
hazardous waste and toxic substances, including Superfund and RCRA 
(excluding mining, oil, gas, and coal combustion wastes); noise 
pollution control; insurance, except health insurance; and regulation 
of travel, tourism, and time.

                 Subcommittee on Health and Environment

                             (Ratio: 16-13)

                  MICHAEL BILIRAKIS, Florida, Chairman

J. DENNIS HASTERT, Illinois          SHERROD BROWN, Ohio
  Vice Chairman                      HENRY A. WAXMAN, California
JOE BARTON, Texas                    EDOLPHUS TOWNS, New York
FRED UPTON, Michigan                 FRANK PALLONE, Jr., New Jersey
JAMES C. GREENWOOD, Pennsylvania     PETER DEUTSCH, Florida
CLIFF STEARNS, Florida               ANNA G. ESHOO, California
NATHAN DEAL, Georgia                 BART STUPAK, Michigan
RICHARD BURR, North Carolina         GENE GREEN, Texas
BRIAN P. BILBRAY, California         TED STRICKLAND, Ohio
ED WHITFIELD, Kentucky               DIANA DeGETTE, Colorado
GREG GANSKE, Iowa                    RALPH M. HALL, Texas
CHARLIE NORWOOD, Georgia             ELIZABETH FURSE, Oregon
TOM COBURN, Oklahoma                 JOHN D. DINGELL, Michigan
RICK LAZIO, New York                   (Ex Officio)
BARBARA CUBIN, Wyoming
TOM BLILEY, Virginia
  (Ex Officio)

Jurisdiction: Public health and quarantine; hospital construction; 
mental health and research; biomedical programs and health protection 
in general, including Medicaid and national health insurance; food and 
drugs; drug abuse; and Clean Air Act and environmental protection in 
general, including the Safe Drinking Water Act.

                    Subcommittee on Energy and Power

                             (Ratio: 16-13)

                    DAN SCHAEFER, Colorado, Chairman

MICHAEL D. CRAPO, Idaho              RALPH M. HALL, Texas
  Vice Chairman                      ELIZABETH FURSE, Oregon
MICHAEL BILIRAKIS, Florida           BOBBY L. RUSH, Illinois
J. DENNIS HASTERT, Illinois          KAREN McCARTHY, Missouri
FRED UPTON, Michigan                 ALBERT R. WYNN, Maryland
CLIFF STEARNS, Florida               EDWARD J. MARKEY, Massachusetts
BILL PAXON, New York                 RICK BOUCHER, Virginia
STEVE LARGENT, Oklahoma              EDOLPHUS TOWNS, New York
RICHARD BURR, North Carolina         FRANK PALLONE, Jr., New Jersey
ED WHITFIELD, Kentucky               SHERROD BROWN, Ohio
CHARLIE NORWOOD, Georgia             BART GORDON, Tennessee
RICK WHITE, Washington               PETER DEUTSCH, Florida
TOM COBURN, Oklahoma                 JOHN D. DINGELL, Michigan
JAMES E. ROGAN, California             (Ex Officio)
JOHN SHIMKUS, Illinois
TOM BLILEY, Virginia
  (Ex Officio)

Jurisdiction: National energy policy generally; fossil energy, 
renewable energy resources, and synthetic fuels; energy conservation; 
energy information; energy regulation and utilization; utility issues 
and regulation of nuclear facilities; interstate energy compacts; 
nuclear energy and waste; mining, oil, gas, and coal combustion wastes; 
and all laws, programs, and government activities affecting such 
matters.

              Subcommittee on Oversight and Investigations

                              (Ratio: 9-7)

                      JOE BARTON, Texas, Chairman

CHRISTOPHER COX, California          RON KLINK, Pennsylvania
  Vice Chairman                      HENRY A. WAXMAN, California
JAMES C. GREENWOOD, Pennsylvania     PETER DEUTSCH, Florida
MICHAEL D. CRAPO, Idaho              BART STUPAK, Michigan
RICHARD BURR, North Carolina         ELIOT L. ENGEL, New York
BRIAN P. BILBRAY, California         THOMAS C. SAWYER, Ohio
GREG GANSKE, Iowa                    JOHN D. DINGELL, Michigan
TOM COBURN, Oklahoma                   (Ex Officio)
TOM BLILEY, Virginia
  (Ex Officio)

Jurisdiction: Responsibility for oversight of agencies, departments, 
and programs within the jurisdiction of the full committee, and for 
conducting investigations within such jurisdiction.

                            Committee Staff

                   James E. Derderian, Chief of Staff

                Curry Ann Hagerty, Deputy Chief of Staff

                   James D. Barnette, General Counsel

                    Hugh N. Halpern, Parliamentarian

          Ramsen Vincent Betfarhad, Counsel, Economic Advisor

                    Nicole Billman, Staff Assistant

             Daniel Tyler Boston, Professional Staff Member

               Elizabeth (Betsy) Brennan, Staff Assistant

                Marie Burns, Administrative Coordinator

                       Dwight Cates, Investigator

                       David L. Cavicke, Counsel

                 John C. Clocker, Systems Administrator

                     Kevin V. Cook, Science Advisor

                 John Penn Crawford, Legislative Clerk

                        Thomas DiLenge, Counsel

               A. Elizabeth Eichberger, Legislative Clerk

                 David M. Fish, Communications Director

                Michael P. Flood, Jr., Legislative Clerk

                    Jason C. Foster, Staff Assistant

                Gabriele A. Glynn, Personnel Specialist

                       Robert M. Gordon, Counsel

          Christina K. Gungoll, Deputy Communications Director

                  Anthony B. Habib, Legislative Clerk

                       Edward D. Hearst, Counsel

                       Andre Dale Hollis, Counsel

                      Joseph T. Kelliher, Counsel

                      Nandan Kenkeremath, Counsel

                     Andrew Parker Leyden, Counsel

                     Justin Weaver Lilley, Counsel

                        Eric Rowen Link, Counsel

                      David Luca, Staff Assistant

                        John R. Manthei, Counsel

                 Brian McCullough, Legislative Analyst

              Darlene G. McMullen, Chief Legislative Clerk

                       Robert J. Meyers, Counsel

              Michael O'Rielly, Professional Staff Member

    Mark A. Paoletta, Chief Counsel for Oversight and Investigations

                     Patricia J. Paoletta, Counsel

                   Joseph P. Patterson, Jr., Printer

               Clifford M. Riccio, Jr., Legislative Clerk

                       Linda Dallas Rich, Counsel

                  Amit Sachdev, Environmental Counsel

                   Donn J. Salvosa, Legislative Clerk

                      Jason Scism, Staff Assistant

               Paul G. Scolese, Professional Staff Member

               Peter V. Sheffield, Media Relations Clerk

                  Robert E. Simison, Legislative Clerk

            Alan Michael Slobodin, Senior Oversight Counsel

                     Joseph C. Stanko, Jr., Counsel

                    Anthony M. Sullivan, Comptroller

                 Jennifer Leigh Taylor, Staff Assistant

               Troy D. Timmons, Professional Staff Member

                 Michael S. Twinchek, Legislative Clerk

                     Catherine G. Van Way, Counsel

              Mark Joseph Washko, Counsel/Special Projects

                        John Marc Wheat, Counsel

             Eric John Wohlschlegel, Deputy Press Secretary

                Christopher R. Wolf, Research Assistant

      William Duncan Wood, Professional Investigative Staff Member

                             Minority Staff

      Reid P.F. Stuntz, Minority Staff Director and Chief Counsel

         Dennis B. Fitzgibbons, Deputy Minority Staff Director

              David R. Schooler, Minority General Counsel

                 Sharon E. Davis, Chief Minority Clerk

                  Howard P. Bauleke, Minority Counsel

                   Alison T. Berkes, Minority Counsel

     Candace E. Butler, Minority Assistant Clerk/LAN Administrator

           Amy Droskoski, Minority Professional Staff Member

                     John P. Ford, Minority Counsel

                 Richard A. Frandsen, Minority Counsel

           M. Bruce Gwinn, Minority Professional Staff Member

                    Edith Holleman, Minority Counsel

 Carla Hultberg, Minority Senior Secretary/Assistant LAN Administrator

             Brendan C. Kelsay, Minority Research Assistant

              Raymond R. Kent, Minority Finance Assistant

               Christopher Knauer, Minority Investigator

                   Andrew W. Levin, Minority Counsel

              D. Elaine Sheets, Minority Senior Secretary

                   Sue D. Sheridan, Minority Counsel

         Bridgett E. Taylor, Minority Professional Staff Member

                Consuela M. Washington, Minority Counsel
          Legislative and Oversight Activity of the Committee

    During the 105th Congress, 898 bills were referred to the 
Committee on Commerce. The Full Committee reported 51 measures 
to the House (not including conference reports). The Committee 
also approved and transmitted to the Committee on the Budget 
seven Committee Prints for inclusion in H.R. 2015, the Balanced 
Budget Act of 1997, dealing with telecommunications issues, 
energy issues, and health issues. Fifty-seven measures 
regarding issues within the Committee's jurisdiction were 
enacted into law.
    In areas as diverse as health, telecommunications, 
securities, and the environment, the Committee made great 
strides toward the goal of creating a more effective, less 
expensive, and more accountable government that better serves 
all Americans.
    The enactment of the Balanced Budget Act of 1997 was not 
only an historic achievement in that it balanced the Federal 
budget for the first time in decades, but also because it 
included major legislative initiatives to: (1) reform the 
Medicare Program and thus avert bankruptcy of the program while 
assuring benefits for seniors continue to rise; (2) restructure 
the Medicaid Program by removing bureaucratic obstacles to 
responsive, effective delivery of services and giving States 
more control over their own programs; and (3) establish the 
State Children's Health Insurance Program to provide that more 
children get the health care they need.
    The 105th Congress also marked the passage of the Food and 
Drug Administration Modernization Act of 1997, a comprehensive 
reform of the operations of the Food and Drug Administration to 
streamline and improve the regulation of new prescription 
drugs, medical devices, and food additives.
    With respect to telecommunications, the Committee addressed 
issues as diverse as overseeing the implementation of the 
Telecommunications Act of 1996 to major initiatives to address 
the impact of electronic commerce. Legislation was enacted into 
law to address the question of Internet taxes, to protect 
children from sexually explicit material on the Internet, and 
to protect the privacy of children online.
    In the securities area, Committee action resulted in 
enactment of the Securities Litigation Uniform Standards Act of 
1998, which builds on legislation enacted in the 104th Congress 
to protect American companies, investors, and workers from the 
high cost of frivolous lawsuits. The Committee also played a 
major role in the development of the Financial Services Act to 
modernize the regulatory structure for the securities, 
insurance, and banking industries.
    With respect to the environment, the Committee monitored 
the implementation of the Safe Drinking Water Act Amendments of 
1996, the Environmental Protection Agency's proposed revisions 
of the National Ambient Air Quality Standards (NAAQS) for Ozone 
and Particulate Matter, and the international negotiations on 
global climate change and the Kyoto Protocol.
    The Committee also focused significant time and effort in 
several areas which will continue to be the focus for 
legislative activity in the 106th Congress, including the 
enhancement of competition in the electric utility industry, 
the reform of the Superfund program, and the need to open up 
electronic commerce, the marketplace of the 21st Century.
    The following is a summary of the legislative and oversight 
activities of the Committee on Commerce during the 105th 
Congress, including a summary of the activities taken by the 
Committee to implement its Oversight Plan for the 105th 
Congress.
                         Committee on Commerce

                             full committee

                             (Ratio: 28-23)

                     TOM BLILEY, Virginia, Chairman

W.J. ``BILLY'' TAUZIN, Louisiana     JOHN D. DINGELL, Michigan
MICHAEL G. OXLEY, Ohio               HENRY A. WAXMAN, California
MICHAEL BILIRAKIS, Florida           EDWARD J. MARKEY, Massachusetts
DAN SCHAEFER, Colorado               RALPH M. HALL, Texas
JOE BARTON, Texas                    RICK BOUCHER, Virginia
J. DENNIS HASTERT, Illinois          THOMAS J. MANTON, New York
FRED UPTON, Michigan                 EDOLPHUS TOWNS, New York
CLIFF STEARNS, Florida               FRANK PALLONE, Jr., New Jersey
BILL PAXON, New York                 SHERROD BROWN, Ohio
PAUL E. GILLMOR, Ohio                BART GORDON, Tennessee
  Vice Chairman                      ELIZABETH FURSE, Oregon
JAMES C. GREENWOOD, Pennsylvania     PETER DEUTSCH, Florida
MICHAEL D. CRAPO, Idaho              BOBBY L. RUSH, Illinois
CHRISTOPHER COX, California          ANNA G. ESHOO, California
NATHAN DEAL, Georgia                 RON KLINK, Pennsylvania
STEVE LARGENT, Oklahoma              BART STUPAK, Michigan
RICHARD BURR, North Carolina         ELIOT L. ENGEL, New York
BRIAN P. BILBRAY, California         THOMAS C. SAWYER, Ohio
ED WHITFIELD, Kentucky               ALBERT R. WYNN, Maryland
GREG GANSKE, Iowa                    GENE GREEN, Texas
CHARLIE NORWOOD, Georgia             KAREN McCARTHY, Missouri
RICK WHITE, Washington               TED STRICKLAND, Ohio
TOM COBURN, Oklahoma                 DIANA DeGETTE, Colorado
RICK LAZIO, New York
BARBARA CUBIN, Wyoming
JAMES E. ROGAN, California
JOHN SHIMKUS, Illinois
HEATHER WILSON, New Mexico

                           Oversight Hearings

                         the tobacco settlement

    On June 20, 1997, the Nation's largest tobacco product 
manufacturers and several State Attorneys General agreed to a 
proposal to settle approximately 40 lawsuits brought by States 
against the tobacco companies. Certain provisions of the 
settlement agreement required statutory changes to existing 
law, as well as the enactment of new statutes. In the Fall of 
1997, the Committee and its subcommittees began an effort to 
review the terms of the proposed settlement, and their impact 
on national tobacco policy, as well as any alternatives.
    As part of this effort, the Full Committee held two 
hearings. The first hearing, held on November 13, 1997, 
solicited the views of the Administration and the State 
Attorneys General. The Committee heard testimony from the 
Honorable Donna Shalala, Secretary, Department of Health and 
Human Services, the Honorable Christine Gregoire, Attorney 
General for the State of Washington, and the Honorable Gale A. 
Norton, Attorney General for the State of Colorado.
    At that hearing, the Chairman announced his intention to 
obtain certain tobacco industry documents which a Minnesota 
court official had identified as not protected by the attorney-
client privilege because they may contain evidence of crime or 
fraud (State of Minnesota, et al. v. Philip Morris, Inc., et 
al. No. C1-94-8563 (2nd Judicial Dist., MN)), as well as any 
other documents found to be exempt from attorney-client 
protection in the future. When the tobacco companies failed to 
comply voluntarily with that request, the Chairman of the Full 
Committee, in consultation with the Ranking Minority Member, 
issued subpoenas on December 4, 1997. The companies were given 
24 hours to comply with the subpoenas or face enforcement 
proceedings in the form of a contempt resolution. The Committee 
received the documents on the following day. Following a 
bipartisan staff review of those documents and consultation 
with the Ranking Minority Member, the documents were ordered 
released to Committee Members and the public. The documents 
were made available in electronic form on CD-ROM (Committee 
Print 105-P) and on the Committee's site on the World Wide Web 
(http://www.house.gov/commerce).
    On January 29, 1998, the Full Committee held its second 
hearing which solicited the views of the chief executive 
officers of the nation's five largest tobacco companies. At 
that hearing, the Committee heard from the chief executive 
officers of Brown & Williamson Tobacco Corporation; Loews 
Corporation; Philip Morris Companies, Inc.; RJR Nabisco; and 
UST, Inc.
    On February 10, 1998, approximately 39,000 additional 
documents were recommended to the Minnesota court for denial of 
privilege. On February 19, 1998, the Chairman consulted with 
the Ranking Minority Member and issued subpoenas to individuals 
representing Brown & Williamson Tobacco Corporation; Philip 
Morris Companies, Inc.; RJR Nabisco; Loews Corporation; The 
Tobacco Institute; and The Council for Tobacco Research--
U.S.A., Inc. ordering production of the approximately 39,000 
documents to the Committee. Enforcement of the subpoenas was 
delayed until the United States Supreme Court had completed its 
review of the tobacco industry's appeal on claims of privilege. 
After the Supreme Court declined to hear their appeal, the 
Chairman informed the companies that the Committee had denied 
their claims of privilege in a letter dated April 6, 1998. The 
companies were also notified that unless the documents were 
produced immediately a contempt resolution would be brought 
before the Committee seeking enforcement of the subpoenas. The 
documents were produced to the Committee on that same day.
    After an initial bipartisan assessment of all documents 
submitted to the Committee on April 6, 1998, the Chairman 
consulted with the Ranking Minority Member and ordered the 
public release of subpoenaed documents on the Committee's site 
on the World Wide Web on April 22, 1998. It was decided that 
424 documents should be withheld for further review. The 
Committee staff continued its bipartisan review of the 
remaining documents, and eventually recommended that 39 
documents (excluding duplicate documents) remain confidential 
either because they were prepared for ongoing litigation, 
contained trade secret information, or affected the privacy 
rights of named plaintiffs. The Chairman then ordered all 
remaining documents, with the exception of the 39 documents 
(and duplicates) released both in electronic form on CD-ROMs 
(Committee Print 105-U), and on the Committee's site on the 
World Wide Web (http://www.house.gov/commerce).

                     electronic commerce initiative

    In early 1998, Chairman Bliley announced that the Committee 
would be undertaking a long-term initiative on electronic 
commerce. The goals of this initiative were to familiarize 
members of the Committee on Commerce about electronic commerce 
and its growing importance, help Congress better understand the 
multitude of electronic commerce issues, and lay the groundwork 
for the Committee's future legislative agenda.
    As part of the Committee's electronic commerce initiative, 
the Committee held eleven hearings exploring a variety of 
electronic commerce issues. Two of the electronic commerce 
hearings were held in the Full Committee, five in the 
Subcommittee on Telecommunications, Trade, and Consumer 
Protection, two in the Subcommittee on Finance and Hazardous 
Materials, and one each in the Subcommittee on Health and the 
Environment and the Subcommittee on Energy and Power. Please 
refer to the sections of this report describing each 
Subcommittee's activities for further information on the 
electronic commerce hearings held in the Subcommittees.
    The Full Committee's first electronic commerce hearing, 
held on April 30, 1998, focused on the rise and growing 
importance of electronic commerce to our nation's economy. The 
Committee examined the economic impact of electronic commerce 
on consumers and the economy, consumer acceptance of electronic 
commerce, the role of government in electronic commerce, and 
the future direction of electronic commerce. Witnesses included 
executives from companies currently conducting electronic 
commerce and observers of electronic commerce from academia, 
the media, and the financial community.
    The Full Committee's second electronic commerce hearing, on 
July 30, 1998, focused on global electronic commerce issues. 
The hearing examined the current status of international talks 
on electronic commerce, the role of electronic commerce in 
international trade, the impending European Union data 
protection directive, and the role of electronic commerce in 
promoting democracy and free market philosophy around the 
world. Witnesses included the Honorable William Daley, 
Secretary of Commerce, and representatives from the public 
policy community and from businesses engaged in electronic 
commerce both in the United States and abroad.

                  education and technology initiatives

    Over the past decade, schools and libraries have become 
more dependent on telecommunications technologies as 
educational tools and resources. In general, telecommunications 
technologies include the traditional forms of communications 
such as computers, telephones, and cable television and also 
include a vast array of new technologies such as access to the 
Internet, ISDN, Ethernets, and interactive software. The 
Federal government has been a strong supporter of providing 
technology in the classrooms. Today, there are a number of 
programs either funded directly by or created pursuant to 
Federal legislation that provide funding for telecommunications 
technology. Some of these programs provide funding exclusively 
for technology, while other programs provide funding for an 
entire host of uses, of which, advanced technologies may be 
included. In May 1998, the General Accounting Office (GAO) 
identified 40 programs in nine Federal departments and agencies 
that provide funding assistance for uses that could include 
telecommunications technologies and related services for 
schools and libraries. Together, these programs provided an 
estimated $10 billion in funding assistance in Fiscal Year 
1997, although GAO could not specify with any certainty the 
actual amount spent on technologies. GAO's estimates also did 
not include a discussion of the Federal Communications 
Commission's e-rate program which is expected to distribute 
approximately $2 billion annually in subsidies to schools and 
libraries.
    On July 14, 1998, Commerce Committee Chairman Bliley and 
Education and the Workforce Committee Chairman Goodling 
requested that the GAO update its prior May findings and 
conduct an in-depth study of all Federal programs that provide 
assistance to schools or libraries for education and technology 
uses. In addition, the request required the GAO to determine 
which programs may overlap with one another and to determine 
where administrative efficiencies can be gained.
    In addition to Federal governmental programs, the private 
sector has made, and continues to make, valuable contributions 
to schools and libraries in the form of telecommunications 
equipment, telecommunications services, internal connections, 
and access to the Internet. Many communities and States also 
are involved in efforts to provide technology to their schools 
and classrooms.
    On September 16, 1998, the Full Committee held a joint 
hearing with the Committee on Education and the Workforce on 
Education and Technology Initiatives. The hearing focused on 
both Federal and private sector efforts that help schools and/
or libraries with access to telecommunications technologies. 
Testimony was received from representatives of the Department 
of Education, telecommunications companies, the General 
Accounting Office, and local libraries and school districts.

implementation of the food and drug administration modernization act of 
                                  1997

    On October 7, 1998, the Full Committee held a hearing on 
the Implementation of the Food and Drug Administration 
Modernization Act of 1997 (Modernization Act) (Public Law 105-
115). The Modernization Act represents a historic achievement 
of substantive Food and Drug Administration (FDA) reforms, and 
among other things, streamlines the approval process for 
pharmaceutical and medical device products, and eliminates 
several unnecessary regulatory burdens.
    This hearing was held to mark the one year anniversary of 
the House passage of the Modernization Act, and primarily 
considered the following questions: (1) what impact the 
Modernization Act has had on the pharmaceutical, medical 
device, and biotechnology industries; (2) whether FDA has 
implemented the Modernization Act's mandates consistent with 
Congress' intent; and (3) what impact the Modernization Act has 
had on the way FDA is able to face the challenges of rapid 
product innovation to ensure the safety and quality of the 
medicines we take and the medical devices we use. The Full 
Committee received testimony from representatives of the Food 
and Drug Administration, including Acting FDA Commissioner 
Michael A. Friedman. Testimony was also received from 
representatives of the pharmaceutical, biotechnology, and 
medical device industries, as well as from individual patients 
who have received beneficial drugs and devices as a result of 
procedures established by the Modernization Act.

                             Hearings Held

    The Tobacco Settlement: Views of the Administration and the 
State Attorneys General.--Oversight Hearing on the Tobacco 
Settlement: Views of the Administration and the State Attorneys 
General. Hearing held on November 13, 1997. PRINTED, Serial 
Number 105-56.
    The Tobacco Settlement: Views of Tobacco Industry 
Executives.--Oversight Hearing on the Tobacco Settlement: Views 
of Tobacco Industry Executives. Hearing held on January 29, 
1998. PRINTED, Serial Number 105-68.
    Electronic Commerce--Part 1.--Oversight Hearing on 
Electronic Commerce: The Marketplace of the 21st Century. 
Hearing held on April 30, 1998. PRINTED, Serial Number 105-111.
    Electronic Commerce--Part 1.--Oversight Hearing on 
Electronic Commerce: The Global Electronic Marketplace. Hearing 
held on July 30, 1998. PRINTED, Serial Number 105-111.
    Education and Technology Initiatives.--Joint Oversight 
Hearing with the Committee on Education and the Workforce on 
Education and Technology Initiatives. Hearing held on September 
16, 1998. PRINTED, Serial Number 105-118.
    Implementation of the Food and Drug Administration 
Modernization Act of 1997.--Oversight Hearing on the 
Implementation of the Food and Drug Administration 
Modernization Act of 1997. Hearing held on October 7, 1998. 
PRINTED, Serial Number 105-136.

   Subcommittee on Telecommunications, Trade and Consumer Protection

                             (Ratio 16-13)

               W.J. ``BILLY'' TAUZIN, Louisiana, Chairman

MICHAEL G. OXLEY, Ohio               EDWARD J. MARKEY, Massachusetts
  Vice Chairman                      RICK BOUCHER, Virginia
DAN SCHAEFER, Colorado               BART GORDON, Tennessee
JOE BARTON, Texas                    ELIOT L. ENGEL, New York
J. DENNIS HASTERT, Illinois          THOMAS C. SAWYER, Ohio
FRED UPTON, Michigan                 THOMAS J. MANTON, New York
CLIFF STEARNS, Florida               BOBBY L. RUSH, Illinois
PAUL E. GILLMOR, Ohio                ANNA G. ESHOO, California
CHRISTOPHER COX, California          RON KLINK, Pennsylvania
NATHAN DEAL, Georgia                 ALBERT R. WYNN, Maryland
STEVE LARGENT, Oklahoma              GENE GREEN, Texas
RICK WHITE, Washington               KAREN McCARTHY, Missouri
JAMES E. ROGAN, California           JOHN D. DINGELL, Michigan
JOHN SHIMKUS, Illinois                 (Ex Officio)
HEATHER WILSON, New Mexico
TOM BLILEY, Virginia
  (Ex Officio)

Jurisdiction: Interstate and foreign telecommunications including, but 
not limited to all telecommunication and information transmission by 
broadcast, radio, wire, microwave, satellite, or other mode; interstate 
and foreign commerce, including trade matters within the jurisdiction 
of the full committee; regulation of commercial practices (the FTC); 
consumer affairs and consumer protection in general; consumer product 
safety (the CPSC); product liability; and motor vehicle safety.

                         Legislative Activities

                      balanced budget act of 1997

                  Public Law 105-33 (H.R. 2015, S. 947)

   (Title III--Telecommunications and Spectrum Allocation Provisions)

    To provide for reconciliation pursuant to subsections 
(b)(1) and (c) of section 105 of the concurrent resolution on 
the budget for fiscal year 1998.

Summary

    Title III of Public Law 105-33, the Balanced Budget Act of 
1997, contains three main provisions which fall within the 
jurisdiction of the Committee on Commerce. First, it extends 
the Federal Communications Commission's (FCC's) auction 
authority through the end of Fiscal Year 2007. It also broadens 
the FCC's auction authority by requiring all radio-based 
licenses for which mutually exclusive applications are filed 
with the FCC to be assigned by means of competitive bidding, 
unless the license is intended for a service which is exempted 
from the FCC's auction authority. It also directs the FCC and 
the National Telecommunications and Information Administration 
(NTIA) collectively to reallocate 120 megahertz (MHz) of 
spectrum located below 3 gigahertz (GHz) for commercial use, 
and to assign through competitive bidding the licenses to use 
the newly allocated spectrum. The FCC is further charged with 
ensuring that the public recovers a minimum level of receipts.
    Second, Title III establishes a statutory framework for 
both auctioning and recapturing the 78 MHz of spectrum that 
current television broadcast licensees formerly transmitted in 
analog format. It precludes the FCC from renewing any analog 
license beyond December 31, 2006, unless certain conditions are 
shown to exist, including evidence that a material number of 
households in a given market continue to rely exclusively on 
over-the-air analog signals. The licenses to use the recaptured 
78 MHz of spectrum will be assigned through competitive bidding 
beginning in 2001. The FCC must ensure that the public recovers 
a minimum level of receipts.
    Finally, Title III allocates and assigns the 60 MHz of 
spectrum located between television broadcast channels 60 
through 69 to public safety services and for general commercial 
use. The FCC is directed to set aside up to 24 MHz of the 60 
MHz total for public safety, and the remaining 36 MHz for 
general commercial use is to be assigned by means of 
competitive bidding. With regard to the 36 MHz slated for 
auction, the FCC must ensure that the public recovers a minimum 
level of receipts.

Legislative History

    The Subcommittee on Telecommunications, Trade, and Consumer 
Protection held an oversight hearing on February 12, 1997, 
which addressed a number of issues relating to spectrum 
management policy, including proposals to expand the FCC's 
auction authority and the transition to digital television.
    On June 5, 1997 and June 10, 1997, the Subcommittee on 
Telecommunications, Trade, and Consumer Protection met in open 
markup session to consider a Committee Print entitled ``Title 
III, Subtitle D--Communications''. On June 10, 1997, the 
Committee Print was approved for Full Committee consideration, 
amended, by a roll call vote of 13 yeas to 12 nays.
    The Full Committee met in open markup session to consider 
the Committee Print on June 11, 1997. The Committee approved 
the Committee Print entitled ``Title III, Subtitle D--
Communications'' for transmittal to the Committee on the 
Budget, amended, for inclusion in the Balanced Budget Act of 
1997, by a voice vote, a quorum being present.
    On June 17, 1997, the Chairman of the Committee on Commerce 
sent a letter to the Chairman of the Committee on the Budget 
transmitting the Committee Print for inclusion in the Balanced 
Budget Act of 1997. The provisions of the Committee Print were 
included in the text of Title III of H.R. 2015 as reported to 
the House by the Committee on the Budget on June 24, 1997 (H. 
Rpt. 105-149).
    The Committee on Rules met on June 24, 1997, and granted a 
rule providing for the consideration of H.R. 2015. The rule was 
filed in the House as H. Res. 174. On June 25, 1997, the House 
passed H. Res. 174 by a roll call vote of 228 yeas to 200 nays.
    The House considered H.R. 2015 on June 25, 1997, and passed 
the bill, amended, by a roll call vote of 270 yeas to 162 nays. 
On June 25, 1997, H.R. 2015 was received in the Senate and read 
twice.
    On June 20, 1997, the Senate Committee on the Budget 
reported a companion bill to the Senate, which was introduced 
in the Senate as S. 947 (No Written Report). Pursuant to a 
unanimous consent request agreed to on June 20, 1997, the 
Senate began consideration of S. 947 on June 23, 1997. The 
Senate considered S. 947 on June 23, June 24, and June 25, 
1997; and on June 25, 1997, passed S. 947 by a roll call vote 
of 73 yeas to 27 nays. Pursuant to a unanimous consent request 
agreed to on June 24, 1997, the Senate, on June 25, 1997, then 
proceeded to the immediate consideration of H.R. 2015, struck 
all after the enacting clause and inserted in lieu thereof the 
text of S. 947 as passed by the Senate, and passed H.R. 2015. 
By unanimous consent, the Senate postponed further 
consideration of S. 947.
    On June 27, 1997, the Senate insisted on its amendment to 
H.R. 2015, requested a conference with the House, and appointed 
conferees. On July 10, 1997, the House disagreed to the Senate 
amendment to H.R. 2015, agreed to a conference with the Senate, 
and appointed conferees. A motion to instruct the conferees was 
agreed to by a roll call vote of 414 yeas to 14 nays. Members 
of the Committee on Commerce were appointed as conferees. On 
July 30, 1997, the conference report on H.R. 2015 was filed in 
the House (H. Rpt. 105-347).
    On July 29, 1997, the Committee on Rules met and granted a 
rule waiving clause 4(b) of Rule XI (requiring a 2/3 vote to 
consider a rule on the same day it is reported by the Committee 
on Rules) with respect to the rule on H.R. 2015, or amendments 
in disagreement reported before August 3, 1997, and the rule on 
H.R. 2014 or amendments in disagreement reported before August 
3, 1997. The rule was filed in the House as H. Res. 201. On 
July 30, 1997, the Committee on Rules met and granted a rule 
providing for the consideration of the conference report on 
H.R. 2015. The rule was filed in the House as H. Res. 202. On 
July 30, 1997, the House passed H. Res. 201 by a roll call vote 
of 237 yeas to 187 nays. The House then passed H. Res. 202 by a 
voice vote. Finally, on July 30, 1997, the House agreed to the 
conference report on H.R. 2015 by a roll call vote of 346 yeas 
to 85 nays.
    The Senate considered the conference report on H.R. 2015 on 
July 30, and July 31, 1997; and on July 31, 1997, passed the 
conference report by a roll call vote of 85 yeas to 15 nays, 
clearing the measure for the President.
    H.R. 2015 was presented to the President on August 1, 1997. 
On August 5, 1997, the President signed H.R. 2015 into law 
(Public Law 105-33).

             international dolphin conservation program act

                  Public Law 105-42 (H.R. 408, S. 39)

    To amend the Marine Mammal Protection Act of 1972 to 
support the International Dolphin Conservation Program in the 
eastern tropical Pacific Ocean, and for other purposes.

Summary

    H.R. 408 provides for the implementation of the Declaration 
of Panama, a treaty signed by the United States and 11 other 
nations in 1995. It is similar to legislation considered in the 
104th Congress, H.R. 2823.
    Section 5 of H.R. 408 amends the Dolphin Protection 
Consumer Information Act (16 U.S.C. Sec. 1385) regarding the 
circumstances in which tuna products may be labeled ``dolphin 
safe,'' including requiring certain statements by a vessel's 
captain, or in certain instances, a vessel's captain and an 
observer. The legislation also directs the Secretary of 
Commerce (the Secretary) to develop an official mark to label 
tuna products as dolphin safe and specifies the circumstances 
in which the mark may be used. The provisions mandate 
implementing regulations, including regulations establishing a 
domestic tracking and verification program. It also directs the 
Secretary to make findings regarding whether the intentional 
deployment on, or encirclement of, dolphins with purse seine 
nets is having a significant adverse impact on any depleted 
dolphin stock in the eastern tropical Pacific Ocean. Finally, 
it sets forth circumstances in which the captain's and 
observer's statements must be that no dolphins were killed or 
seriously injured during the sets in which the tuna were 
caught.

Legislative History

    H.R. 408 was introduced in the House by Mr. Gilchrest and 
six cosponsors on January 9, 1997. The bill was referred solely 
to the Committee on Resources.
    On April 16, 1997, the Committee on Resources ordered H.R. 
408 reported to the House, amended, by a voice vote. On April 
23, 1997, the Chairman of the Committee on Commerce sent a 
letter to the Chairman of the Committee on Resources indicating 
that H.R. 408 included several provisions within the 
jurisdiction of the Committee on Commerce. The Chairman stated, 
however, that the Committee on Commerce had reviewed the action 
taken by the Committee on Resources and, in order to expedite 
consideration of this measure by the House, the Committee on 
Commerce would not seek a sequential referral of H.R. 408, 
provided such action would not prejudice the Commerce 
Committee's future jurisdictional interests in the legislation.
    On April 24, 1997, the Chairman of the Committee on 
Resources sent a letter to the Chairman of the Committee on 
Commerce acknowledging the Commerce Committee's jurisdictional 
prerogatives with respect to H.R. 408. The Committee on 
Resources reported H.R. 408 to the House on April 24, 1997 (H. 
Rpt. 105-74, Part 1.)
    On April 24, 1997, H.R. 408 was referred, sequentially, to 
the Committee on Ways and Means for a period ending not later 
than May 5, 1997. On April 30, 1997, the Committee on Ways and 
Means ordered H.R. 408 reported to the House, without 
amendment, by a roll call vote of 28 yeas to 9 nays. The 
Committee on Ways and Means reported H.R. 408 to the House on 
May 1, 1997 (H. Rpt. 105-74, Part 2).
    The Committee on Rules met on May 20, 1997, and granted a 
rule providing for the consideration of H.R. 408. The rule was 
filed in the House as H. Res. 153. The House passed H. Res. 153 
on May 21, 1997, by a voice vote.
    The House considered H.R. 408 on May 21, 1997 and passed 
the bill, amended, by a roll call vote of 262 yeas to 166 nays. 
On May 22, 1997, H.R. 408 was received in the Senate, read 
twice, and referred to the Senate Committee on Commerce, 
Science, and Transportation.
    On January 21, 1997, Mr. Stevens and three cosponsors 
introduced S. 39, a companion bill, in the Senate. The bill was 
read twice and referred to the Senate Committee on Commerce, 
Science, and Transportation. On June 26, 1997 the Senate 
Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation ordered S. 
39 reported to the Senate, amended. The Senate Committee on 
Commerce, Science, and Transportation reported S. 39 to the 
Senate on July 14, 1997 (No Written Report).
    On July 30, 1997, the Senate considered S. 39, and passed 
the bill by a roll call vote of 99 yeas to 0 nays. By unanimous 
consent, the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and 
Transportation was then discharged from further consideration 
of H.R. 408. On July 30, 1997, by unanimous consent, the Senate 
proceeded to the immediate consideration of H.R. 408, struck 
all after the enacting clause, and inserted in lieu thereof the 
text of S. 39, as passed by the Senate. On September 2, 1997, 
the Senate vitiated passage of S. 39 and indefinitely postponed 
further consideration of the bill.
    On July 31, 1997, by unanimous consent, the House agreed to 
the Senate amendment to H.R. 408, clearing the measure for the 
President.
    On August 4, 1997, H.R. 408 was presented to the President. 
The President signed H.R. 408 into law on August 15, 1997 
(Public Law 105-42).

         national defense authorization act for fiscal year 1998

     Public Law 105-85 (H.R. 1119, S. 936, S. 924, S. Con. Res. 64)

                    (Telecommunications Provisions)

    To authorize appropriations for fiscal year 1998 for 
military activities of the Department of Defense, for military 
construction, and for defense activities of the Department of 
Energy, to prescribe personnel strengths for such fiscal year 
for the Armed Forces, and for other purposes.

Summary

    Public Law 105-85 includes a number of provisions which 
fall within the jurisdiction of the Committee on Commerce, 
including one provision dealing with a telecommunications 
related issue. Members of the Committee on Commerce were 
appointed as conferees on this provision and participated in 
the conference negotiations which led to the agreement 
contained in H.R. 1119.
    Section 1074 endorses and enacts into law the presidential 
policy on the sustainment and operation of the Global 
Positioning System (GPS) issued in March 1996. The section also 
directs the Secretary of Defense not to accept any restriction 
on the GPS system proposed by the head of any other department 
or agency in the exercise of that official's regulatory 
authority that would adversely affect the military potential of 
GPS.

Legislative History

    H.R. 1119 was introduced in the House by Representatives 
Spence and Dellums on March 19, 1997, and referred solely to 
the Committee on National Security. The Committee on National 
Security met to consider H.R. 1119 on June 11, 1997, and 
ordered the bill reported to the House, amended, by a roll call 
vote of 51 yeas to 3 nays. On June 16, 1997, the Committee on 
National Security reported H.R. 1119 to the House (H. Rpt. 105-
132).
    The Committee on Rules met on June 18, 1997, and granted a 
rule providing for the consideration of H.R. 1119. The rule was 
filed in the House as H. Res. 169. On June 19, 1997, the House 
passed H. Res. 169, amended, by a roll call vote of 322 yeas to 
101 nays.
    The House considered H.R. 1119 on June 19, June 20, June 
23, June 24, and June 25, 1997; and on June 25, 1997, passed 
the bill, as amended by a roll call vote of 304 yeas to 120 
nays. On July 7, 1997, H.R. 1119 was received in the Senate, 
read twice, and placed on the Senate Calendar.
    On June 17, 1997, the Senate Committee on Armed Services 
reported an original measure to the Senate, which was 
introduced in the Senate by Mr. Thurmond as S. 924 and placed 
on the Senate Calendar (S. Rpt. 105-29). On June 18, 1997, the 
Senate Committee on Armed Services reported an original measure 
to the Senate, which was introduced in the Senate by Mr. 
Thurmond as S. 936 and placed on the Senate Calendar (No 
Written Report).
    The Senate considered S. 936 on June 19, June 20, July 7, 
July 8, July 9, July 10, and July 11, 1997. On July 11, 1997, 
the Senate passed S. 936, amended, by a roll call vote of 94 
yeas to 4 nays. On July 11, 1997, by unanimous consent, the 
Senate agreed to a request that S. Rpt. 105-29, the report to 
accompany S. 924, be deemed to be the report to accompany S. 
936. The Senate then, by unanimous consent, took H.R. 1119 from 
the Senate Calendar and passed the bill, amended with the text 
of S. 936 as passed by the Senate. The Senate insisted on its 
amendment to H.R. 1119, requested a conference with the House, 
and appointed conferees.
    On July 25, 1997, the House disagreed to the Senate 
amendment to H.R. 1119, agreed to a conference with the Senate, 
and appointed conferees. Members of the Committee on Commerce 
were appointed as conferees. The House, on July 25, 1997, also 
agreed by a roll call vote of 414 yeas to 0 nays to a motion to 
instruct the conferees and, by a roll call vote of 409 yeas to 
1 nay, agreed to a motion to close portions of the conference.
    On September 5, 1997, the House agreed to a second motion 
to instruct the conferees by a roll call vote of 261 yeas to 
150 nays. The conference report on H.R. 1119 was filed in the 
House on October 23, 1997 (H. Rpt. 105-340).
    On October 23, 1997, the Committee on Rules met and granted 
a rule providing for the consideration of the conference report 
on H.R. 1119. The rule was filed in the House as H. Res. 278. 
On October 28, 1997, the House passed H. Res. 278 by a roll 
call vote of 353 yeas to 59 nays.
    The House agreed to the conference report by a roll call 
vote of 286 yeas to 123 nays on October 28, 1997. The Senate 
agreed to the conference report by a roll call vote of 90 yeas 
to 10 nays on November 6, 1997.
    On November 6, 1997, the Senate also agreed to S. Con. Res. 
64, a resolution to provide for corrections in the enrollment 
of H.R. 1119, pursuant to a unanimous consent request agreed to 
on October 31, 1997. S. Con. Res. 64 was received in the House 
on November 6, 1997, and held at the desk. No further action 
was taken on S. Con. Res. 64.
    H.R. 1119 was presented to the President on November 6, 
1997. The President signed H.R. 1119 into law on November 18, 
1997 (Public Law 105-85).

           designation of common carriers not subject to the

             jurisdiction of a state commission as eligible

                      telecommunications carriers

                      Public Law 105-125 (S. 1354)

    To amend the Communications Act of 1934 to provide for the 
designation of common carriers not subject to the jurisdiction 
of a State commission as eligible telecommunications carriers.

Summary

    The bill amends the Communications Act of 1934 to direct 
the Federal Communications Commission (FCC), upon request, to 
designate a common carrier providing telephone exchange service 
and exchange access that is not subject to the jurisdiction of 
a State commission as an eligible telecommunications carrier 
(eligible to receive universal service support) for a telephone 
service area designated by the FCC. Under the bill, the FCC is 
required to find that such designation is in the public 
interest.

Legislative History

    On October 31, 1997, Mr. McCain and four cosponsors 
introduced S. 1354 in the Senate. The bill was read twice and 
referred to the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science and 
Transportation. On November 4, 1997, the Senate Committee on 
Commerce, Science and Transportation ordered S. 1354 reported 
to the Senate, without amendment. The Senate Committee on 
Commerce, Science and Transportation reported S. 1354 to the 
Senate on November 8, 1997 (No Written Report).
    On November 9, 1997, by unanimous consent, the Senate 
proceeded to the immediate consideration of S. 1354, and passed 
the bill.
    S. 1354 was received in the House on November 12, 1997, and 
referred solely to the Committee on Commerce. On November 13, 
1997, the House considered S. 1354 under Suspension of the 
Rules, thereby discharging the Committee from further 
consideration of S. 1354. The House passed the bill by a voice 
vote, clearing the measure for the President.
    On November 19, 1997, S. 1354 was presented to the 
President. The President signed S. 1354 into law on December 1, 
1997 (Public Law 105-125).

             transportation equity act for the 21st century

                Public Law 105-178 (H.R. 2400, S. 1173)

                   (Motor Vehicle Safety Provisions)

    To authorize funds for Federal-aid highways, highway safety 
programs, and transit programs, and for other purposes.

Summary

    Public Law 105-178 includes a number of provisions which 
fall within the jurisdiction of the Committee on Commerce, 
including several dealing with motor vehicle safety related 
issues. Members of the Committee on Commerce were appointed as 
conferees on these provisions and participated in the 
conference negotiations which led to the agreements contained 
in H.R. 2400.
    Subtitle (A) of Title VII of Public law 105-178 (TEA 21) 
includes much of the legislative language of H.R. 2691, the 
National Highway Traffic Safety Administration Reauthorization 
Act of 1998, as passed the House. The provisions include 
language requiring the Secretary of Transportation to issue a 
final rule to improve occupant protection for occupants of 
different sizes, belted and unbelted, under Federal Motor 
Vehicle Safety Standard (FMVSS) No. 208 while minimizing the 
risk to infants, children, and other occupants from any risks 
associated with air bags, by means that include advanced air 
bags. That rule is to be promulgated according to a specified 
timetable, beginning with the advance notice of proposed 
rulemaking issued no later than September 1, 1998, and a final 
rule issued no later than September 1, 1999.
    The Act also: (1) authorizes appropriations for National 
Highway Traffic Safety Administration's (NHTSA's) automobile 
and safety programs in the total amount of $87.4 million in 
each Fiscal Year 1999 through 2001; (2) prohibits the use of 
those funds for the ``lobbying'' of State legislators or 
officials; (3) amends the American Automobile Labeling Act (49 
U.S.C. Sec. 30204) to make certain changes in the labeling 
requirement and the domestic content calculations; (4) makes 
certain changes to the Odometer Disclosure Act to clarify the 
odometer disclosure requirements for certain transactions 
involving rental car companies and the sale of certain 
vehicles, such as heavy trucks; and (5) makes numerous other 
minor changes to NHTSA's authorizing statutes in response to 
requests from the Administration.
    The subtitle reinstates NHTSA's authority to exempt certain 
motor vehicles imported for show or display from certain 
applicable motor vehicle safety standards, and directs NHTSA to 
conduct a study of the potential benefit of requiring the 
installation of a safety device in the trunk compartment to 
release the trunk lid from the inside.

Legislative History

    H.R. 2400 was introduced in the House on September 4, 1997, 
by Mr. Shuster and three cosponsors. The bill was referred to 
the Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure, and in 
addition to the Committee on the Budget.
    On March 24, 1998, the Committee on Transportation and 
Infrastructure met to consider H.R. 2400, and ordered the bill 
reported to the House, amended, by a roll call vote of 69 yes 
to 0 nays. On March 25, 1998, the Committee on Transportation 
and Infrastructure reported H.R. 2400 to the House (H. Rpt. 
105-467, Part 1). On March 25, 1998, the referral of H.R. 2400 
to the Committee on the Budget was extended for a period ending 
not later than March 27, 1998. On March 25, 1998, H.R. 2400 was 
also referred, sequentially, to the Committee on Ways and Means 
for a period ending not later than March 27, 1998.
    On March 25, 1998, the Chairman of the Committee on 
Commerce sent a letter to the Chairman of the Committee on 
Transportation and Infrastructure indicating that H.R. 2400, as 
ordered reported, included provisions within the jurisdiction 
of the Commerce Committee. The Chairman further stated that, in 
order to expedite consideration of this measure by the House, 
the Committee on Commerce would not seek a sequential referral 
of H.R. 2400, provided such action would not prejudice the 
Commerce Committee's future jurisdictional interests in the 
legislation. On March 25, 1998, the Chairman of the Committee 
on Transportation and Infrastructure sent a letter to the 
Chairman of the Committee on Commerce acknowledging the 
Commerce Committee's jurisdictional concerns and prerogatives 
with respect to H.R. 2400.
    On March 26, 1998, the Committee on Ways and Means 
considered H.R. 2400, and ordered the bill reported to the 
House, amended, by a voice vote.
    On March 27, 1998, the Committee on Transportation and 
Infrastructure filed a supplemental report on H.R. 2400 in the 
House (H. Rpt. 105-467, Part 2). On March 27, 1998, the 
Committee on Ways and Means reported H.R. 2400 to the House (H. 
Rpt. 105-467, Part 3). On March 27, 1998, the Committee on the 
Budget was discharged from further consideration of H.R. 2400.
    On March 31, 1998, the Committee on Rules met and granted a 
rule providing for the consideration of H.R. 2400. The rule was 
filed in the House as H. Res. 405. The House passed H. Res. 405 
on April 1, 1998, by a roll call vote of 357 yeas to 61 nays. 
The House considered H.R. 2400 on April 1, 1998, and passed the 
bill, amended, by a roll call vote of 337 yeas to 80 nays.
    On April 1, 1998, the House also agreed to a unanimous 
consent request if a message arrived from the Senate indicating 
that the Senate had passed H.R. 2400, with an amendment, 
insisted on its amendment, and requested a conference with the 
House, that the House be deemed to have disagreed to the Senate 
amendment, agreed to the conference with the Senate, and that 
the Speaker appointed conferees without any intervening motion. 
The unanimous consent request also provided for a motion to 
instruct conferees to be offered on the House Floor during the 
week of April 21, 1998, and provided that the managers could 
not file a conference report prior to April 22, 1998. H.R. 2400 
was received in the Senate on April 2, 1998, and read twice.
    On September 12, 1997, S. 1173, a companion bill, was 
introduced in the Senate by Mr. Warner and fourteen cosponsors. 
The bill was read twice and referred to the Senate Committee on 
Environment and Public Works. On September 17, 1997, the Senate 
Committee on Environment and Public Works considered S. 1173 
and ordered the bill reported to the Senate, amended. On 
October 1, 1997, the Senate Committee on Environment and Public 
Works reported S. 1173 to the Senate (S. Rpt. 105-95). The 
Senate considered S. 1173 on October 8, October 20, October 21, 
October 22, October 23, October 24, October 28, and October 29, 
1997. On October 29, 1997, S. 1173 was returned to the Senate 
Calendar.
    On February 26, 1998, the Senate began consideration of S. 
1173 again, and considered the bill on February 26, February 
27, March 2, March 3, March 4, March 5, March 6, March 9, March 
10, March 11, and March 12, 1998. On March 12, 1998, the Senate 
adopted an modified committee amendment in the nature of a 
substitute. S. 1173 was then read for the third time and again 
returned to the Senate Calendar. On April 2, 1998, pursuant to 
a unanimous consent request agreed to on March 12, 1998, the 
Senate proceeded to the immediate consideration of H.R. 2400, 
struck all after the enacting clause and inserted in lieu 
thereof the text of S. 1173 as amended by the Senate, and 
passed H.R. 2400. By unanimous consent, the Senate indefinitely 
postponed S. 1173.
    On April 2, 1998, the Senate insisted on its amendment to 
H.R. 2400, requested a conference with the House, and appointed 
conferees. On April 3, 1998, pursuant to the unanimous consent 
agreement of April 1, 1998, the House disagreed to the Senate 
amendment to H.R. 2400, agreed to a conference with the Senate, 
and appointed conferees. On April 22, 1998, the Speaker 
appointed additional conferees from the Committee on Commerce. 
On April 23, 1998, the Speaker appointed additional conferees 
from the Committee on Science. On May 6, 1998, the Speaker 
appointed additional conferees from the Committee on Ways and 
Means and the Committee on the Budget. On May 20, 1998, a 
motion to instruct conferees passed by a roll call vote of 422 
yeas to 0 nays. On May 21, 1998, a motion to instruct conferees 
was defeated by a roll call vote of 77 yeas to 332 nays, with 1 
voting present. On May 21, 1998, a second motion to instruct 
conferees also was defeated by a roll call vote of 156 yeas to 
251 nays, with 2 voting present. On May 22, 1998, the 
conference report on H.R. 2400 was filed in the House (H. Rpt. 
104-550).
    During discussion of the provisions on which Members of the 
Committee on Commerce were appointed the managers on the part 
of both the House and the Senate agreed to accept Senate 
language addressing air bags, with some modifications, and also 
to include many of the provisions reauthorizing NHTSA that were 
contained in H.R. 2691, the National Highway Traffic Safety 
Administration Reauthorization Act of 1998, as passed by the 
House. These provisions were included in subtitle (A) of title 
VII of the conference report.
    On May 22, 1998, the Committee on Rules met and granted a 
rule providing for the consideration of the conference report 
on H.R. 2400. The rule was filed in the House as H. Res. 449. 
On May 22, 1998, the House passed H. Res. 449 by a roll call 
vote of 359 yeas to 29 nays. On May 22, 1998, the House also 
agreed to the conference report on H.R. 2400 by a roll call 
vote of 397 yeas to 86 nays.
    The Senate agreed to the conference report on H.R. 2400 on 
May 22, 1998 by a roll call vote of 85 yeas to 15 nays, 
clearing the measure for the President.
    H.R. 2400 was presented to the President on May 28, 1998. 
On June 9, 1998, the President signed H.R. 2400 into law 
(Public Law 105-178).

               internal revenue service restructuring and

                           reform act of 1998

                     Public Law 105-206 (H.R. 2676)

 (Title IX--Technical Corrections to the Transportation Equity Act for 
                           the 21st Century)

    To amend the Internal Revenue Code of 1986 to restructure 
and reform the Internal Revenue Service, and for other 
purposes.

Summary

    After the passage of the Transportation Equity Act for the 
21st Century (TEA 21, Public Law 105-178), a number of 
technical errors were discovered in the text, including an 
error in the section addressing the ability of the National 
Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) to lobby State 
legislators. The conference report inadvertently left out 
language limiting the lobbying restriction to NHTSA, therefore 
applying the restriction to the entire Department of 
Transportation. Title IX of Public Law 105-206 restores the 
language to that intended by the conferees.

Legislative History

    H.R. 2676 was introduced in the House by Mr. Archer and two 
cosponsors on October 21, 1997. The bill was referred to the 
Committee on Ways and Means, and in addition to the Committee 
on Government Reform and Oversight, and the Committee on Rules.
    The Committee on Ways and Means met to consider H.R. 2676 
on October 22, 1997, and ordered the bill reported to the 
House, amended, by a roll call vote of 33 yeas to 4 nays. On 
October 31, 1997, the Committee on Ways and Means reported H.R. 
2676 to the House (H. Rpt. 105-364, Part 1). On October 31, 
1997, the Committee on Government Reform and Oversight and the 
Committee on Rules were discharged from further consideration 
of H.R. 2676.
    The Committee on Rules met on November 4, 1997, and granted 
a rule providing for the consideration of H.R. 2676. The rule 
was filed in the House as H. Res. 303. The House passed H. Res. 
303 on November 5, 1997, by a voice vote.
    The House considered H.R. 2676 on November 5, 1997, and 
passed the bill by a roll call vote of 426 yeas to 4 nays. On 
November 6, 1997, H.R. 2676 was received in the Senate, read 
twice, and referred to the Senate Committee on Finance.
    On March 31, 1998, the Senate Committee on Finance met to 
consider H.R. 2676, and ordered the bill reported to the 
Senate, amended. On April 22, 1998, the Senate Committee on 
Finance reported H.R. 2676 to the Senate (S. Rpt. 105-174). The 
Senate considered H.R. 2676 on May 5, May 6, and May 7, 1998. 
On May 7, 1998, the Senate passed H.R. 2676, amended, by a roll 
call vote of 97 yeas to 0 yeas. The Senate insisted on its 
amendments to H.R. 2676 and requested a conference with the 
House. On May 13, 1998, the Senate appointed conferees.
    On May 22, 1998, the House disagreed to the Senate 
amendments to H.R. 2676, agreed to a conference with the 
Senate, and appointed conferees. The House, on May 22, 1998, 
also agreed, by a roll call vote of 388 yeas to 1 nay, to a 
motion to instruct conferees.
    The conference report on H.R. 2676 was filed in the House 
on June 24, 1998 (H. Rpt. 105-599). On June 25, 1998, a motion 
to recommit the conference report to the conference failed in 
the House by a roll call vote of 116 yeas to 292 nays. The 
House agreed to the conference report by a roll call vote of 
402 yeas to 8 nays on June 25, 1998. On July 7, July 8, and 
July 9, 1998, the Senate considered the conference report on 
H.R. 2676. On July 9, 1998 the Senate agreed to the conference 
report by a roll call vote of 96 yeas to 2 nays.
    H.R. 2676 was presented to the President on July 21, 1998. 
The President signed H.R. 2676 into law on July 22, 1998 
(Public Law 105-206).

                biomaterials access assurance act of 1998

                  Public Law 105-230 (H.R. 872, S. 648)

    To establish rules governing product liability actions 
against raw materials and bulk component suppliers to medical 
device manufacturers, and for other purposes.

Summary

    H.R. 872 excludes a biomaterials supplier from liability 
for harm to a claimant from an implant unless such supplier is 
a manufacturer of the implant, a seller of the implant, or 
failed to meet applicable contract requirements or 
specifications in providing its biomaterials. A defendant can 
move to dismiss itself from an action on the grounds that it is 
a biomaterials supplier and it is not liable (1) as a 
manufacturer, (2) as a supplier, (3) for furnishing raw 
materials or component parts that failed to meet applicable 
contractual requirements or specifications, or (4) because the 
claimant did not name the manufacturer as a party to the 
action. No discovery is allowed in the case after such a motion 
to dismiss is filed, except for discovery related to 
jurisdictional issues and limited discovery relevant to a claim 
that the biomaterials supplier failed to furnish materials or 
parts for the implant that met applicable contractual 
requirements or specifications.
    The court is required to rule on the motion to dismiss 
solely on the basis of the pleadings and any relevant 
affidavits submitted, granting such motion unless the claimant 
demonstrates that the defendant is not a biomaterials supplier, 
or the court determines that the defendant may be liable as a 
manufacturer, seller, or for failure to meet applicable 
contractual requirements or specifications, or because the 
claimant failed to name the manufacturer as a party to the 
action.
    A manufacturer or claimant may, within 90 days after entry 
of a judgment, file a motion to implead back into the case a 
biomaterials supplier who had earlier been dismissed pursuant 
to this Act. A biomaterials supplier impleaded after dismissal 
may supplement the records of the proceeding, and may only be 
found liable to the extent required and permitted under 
applicable law.

Legislative History

    On February 27, 1997, Mr. Gekas and 27 cosponsors 
introduced H.R. 872 in the House. The bill was referred to the 
Committee on the Judiciary, and in addition to the Committee on 
Commerce.
    The Subcommittee on Telecommunications, Trade, and Consumer 
Protection held a hearing on April 30, 1997 on Product 
Liability Reform: How the Legal Fee Structure Affects Consumer 
Compensation, specifically focusing on biomaterials issues. 
Testimony was received from injured persons with medical 
implants relying on biomaterials supplies, an author of a study 
on biomaterials supplies availability, a medical device 
manufacturer, and patient advocates.
    The Committee on the Judiciary met to consider H.R. 872 on 
April 1, 1998, and ordered the bill reported to the House, 
amended, by a voice vote. On May 22, 1998, the Committee on the 
Judiciary reported H.R. 872 to the House (H. Rpt. 105-549, Part 
1). On May 22, 1998, the referral of H.R. 872 to the Committee 
on Commerce was extended for a period ending not later than 
July 14, 1998.
    On June 17, 1998, the Subcommittee on Telecommunications, 
Trade, and Consumer Protection considered H.R. 872, and 
approved the bill for Full Committee consideration, amended, by 
a voice vote. The Full Committee met in open markup session to 
consider H.R. 872 on June 24, 1998, and ordered the bill 
reported to the House, as amended, by a voice vote, a quorum 
being present. On July 14, 1998, the Committee on Commerce 
reported H.R. 872 to the House (H. Rpt. 105-549, Part 2).
    On April 24, 1997, Mr. Gorton and four cosponsors 
introduced companion legislation, S. 648, in the Senate. S. 648 
was read twice, and referred to the Senate Committee on 
Commerce, Science, and Transportation. On May 1, 1997, the 
Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation 
ordered S. 648 reported to the Senate, without amendment. The 
Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation 
reported S. 648 to the Senate on June 19, 1997 (S. Rpt. 105-
32). The Senate began consideration of S. 648 on July 7, 1998, 
but did not complete consideration and returned S. 648 to the 
Senate Calendar.
    On July 30, 1998, the House considered H.R. 872 under 
Suspension of the Rules and passed the bill, amended, by a 
voice vote. On July 30, 1998, H.R. 872 was received in the 
Senate, read twice, read a third time, and passed by unanimous 
consent.
    H.R. 872 was presented to the President on August 4, 1998. 
The President signed H.R. 872 into law on August 13, 1998 
(Public Law 105-230).

                    fastener quality act amendments

                     Public Law 105-234 (H.R. 3824)

    Amending the Fastener Quality Act to exempt from its 
coverage certain fasteners approved by the Federal Aviation 
Administration for use in aircraft.

Summary

    Public Law 105-234 amends the Fastener Quality Act (15 
U.S.C. Sec. 5401) to exempt fasteners specifically manufactured 
or altered for use on an aircraft from certain testing and 
certification requirements if the quality and suitability of 
those fasteners for that use has been approved by the Federal 
Aviation Administration (FAA). The bill declares that such an 
exemption shall not apply to fasteners represented by the 
fastener manufacturer as having been manufactured in 
conformance with standards or specifications established by a 
consensus standards organization or a Federal agency other than 
the FAA.
    The legislation also delays the implementation of 
regulations issued under the Fastener Quality Act by the 
National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) on April 
14, 1998, as well as any other regulations issued relating to 
the subject of fasteners, until after June 1, 1999, or 120 days 
after the Secretary of Commerce reports to the Committee on 
Commerce and the Committee on Science of the House of 
Representatives on: (1) changes in fastener manufacturing 
processes that have occurred since enactment of the Act; (2) a 
comparison of the Act to other regulatory programs that 
regulate the various categories of fasteners, and an analysis 
of any duplication that exists among programs; and (3) any 
further revisions to the Act that may be warranted because of 
such reported changes.

Legislative History

    H.R. 3824 was introduced in the House by Mr. Sensenbrenner 
and two cosponsors on May 11, 1998. The bill was referred to 
the Committee on Science, and in addition to the Committee on 
Commerce.
    The Committee on Science met to consider H.R. 3824 on May 
13, 1998, and ordered the bill reported to the House, amended, 
by a voice vote. On June 3, 1998, the Chairman of the Committee 
on Commerce sent a letter to the Chairman of the Committee on 
Science indicating that, based on an agreement reached between 
the two Committees, and in order to expedite consideration of 
this measure by the House, the Committee on Commerce would not 
seek an extension of its referral of H.R. 3824, provided such 
action would not prejudice the Commerce Committee's future 
jurisdictional interests in the legislation, with the 
understanding that the Science Committee would make certain 
amendments to the measure when it was brought to the House 
floor.
    On June 4, 1998, the Chairman of the Committee on Science 
sent a letter to the Chairman of the Committee on Commerce 
confirming the agreement reached between the two Committees on 
H.R. 3824 and acknowledging the Commerce Committee's 
jurisdictional concerns and prerogatives with respect to this 
bill, and agreeing to make specified changes in the bill before 
it was brought to the House floor.
    On June 9, 1998, the Committee on Science reported H.R. 
3824 to the House (H. Rpt. 105-574, Part 1). On June 9, 1998, 
the referral of H.R. 3824 to the Committee on Commerce was 
extended for a period ending not later than June 9, 1998. On 
June 9, 1998, the Committee on Commerce was discharged from 
further consideration of H.R. 3824.
    On June 16, 1998, the House considered H.R. 3824 under 
Suspension of the Rules and passed the bill, amended, by a 
voice vote. H.R. 3824 was received in the Senate on June 18, 
1998, read twice, and referred to the Senate Committee on 
Commerce, Science, and Transportation.
    On July 9, 1998, the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, 
and Transportation met to consider H.R. 3824 and ordered the 
bill reported to the Senate, amended. On July 27, 1998, the 
Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation 
reported H.R. 3824 to the Senate (S. Rpt. 105-267).
    On July 31, 1998, by unanimous consent, the Senate 
proceeded to the immediate consideration of H.R. 3824 and 
passed the bill, amended. On August 6, 1998, by unanimous 
consent, the House agreed to the Senate amendment to H.R. 3824, 
clearing the measure for the President.
    H.R. 3824 was presented to the President on August 10, 
1998. The President signed H.R. 3824 into law on August 14, 
1998 (Public Law 105-234).

 strom thurmond national defense authorization act for fiscal year 1999

            Public Law 105-261 (H.R. 3616, S. 2057, S. 2060)

               (Telecommunications and Trade Provisions)

    To authorize appropriations for fiscal year 1999 for 
military activities of the Department of Defense, for military 
construction, and for defense activities of the Department of 
Energy, to prescribe personnel strengths for such fiscal year 
for the Armed Forces, and for other purposes.

Summary

    Public Law 105-261 includes a number of provisions which 
fall within the jurisdiction of the Committee on Commerce, 
including provisions dealing with telecommunications and trade 
related issues. Members of the Committee on Commerce were 
appointed as conferees on these provisions and participated in 
the conference negotiations which led to the agreements 
contained in H.R. 3616.
    Section 1064 of Public Law 105-261 requires the Secretary 
of Defense to report to the defense authorizing committees the 
costs to the Department of Defense (DOD) resulting from 
reallocations of the radio frequency spectrum authorized by 
DOD. The section requires that any entity that purchases any 
portion of the radio frequency spectrum previously reserved for 
use by any Federal agency, including DOD, and that the Federal 
agency has relinquished for sale or lease, shall reimburse the 
Federal agency for the cost incurred by the Federal government 
to make that portion of the frequency spectrum available. The 
section further requires a report in the annual budget request 
for each Federal department or agency that incurs costs for 
such frequency reallocations. Finally, the section exempts from 
the reimbursement requirement those portions of the Federal 
radio frequency spectrum identified for reallocation in the 
first reallocation report submitted to the President and 
Congress, except for reallocations of certain portions of that 
spectrum.
    Title XXXVIII of Public Law 105-261, entitled ``Fair Trade 
in Automotive Parts,'' sets forth the provisions of the Fair 
Trade in Automotive Parts Act of 1998. This title directs the 
Secretary of Commerce (the Secretary) to re-establish an 
initiative to increase the sale of United States made 
automotive parts and accessories to Japanese markets. It also 
directs the Secretary to establish a Special Advisory Committee 
on automotive parts sales in Japanese and other Asian markets 
in order to carry out this title. Functions of this committee 
are to include, with respect to sales of United States 
automotive parts in Japanese and other Asian markets, reporting 
to the Secretary on barriers to sales of such automotive parts, 
to review data on such sales, to advise the Secretary on issues 
relating to such sales, and to assist the Secretary in 
reporting to Congress by submitting an annual report to the 
Secretary regarding such sales. The authority for this title 
expires on December 31, 2003.

Legislative History

    H.R. 3616 was introduced in the House by Representatives 
Spence and Skelton on April 1, 1998, and referred solely to the 
Committee on National Security. The Committee on National 
Security met to consider H.R. 3616 on May 6, 1998, and ordered 
the bill reported to the House, amended, by a voice vote. On 
May 12, 1998, the Committee on National Security reported H.R. 
3616 to the House (H. Rpt. 105-532).
    The Committee on Rules met on May 14, 1998, and granted a 
rule providing for the consideration of H.R. 3616. The rule was 
filed in the House as H. Res. 435. On May 19, 1998, the House 
passed H. Res. 435 by a voice vote. On May 19, 1998, the 
Committee on Rules met and granted a second rule providing for 
the further consideration of H.R. 3616. The rule was filed in 
House as H. Res. 441. On May 20, 1998, the House passed H. Res. 
441 by a roll call vote of 304 yeas to 108 nays.
    The House considered H.R. 3616 on May 19, May 20, and May 
21, 1998; and on May 21, 1998, passed the bill, amended, by a 
roll call vote of 357 yeas to 60 nays. On May 22, 1998, H.R. 
3616 was received in the Senate, read twice, and placed on the 
Senate Calendar.
    On May 11, 1998, the Senate Committee on Armed Services 
reported an original measure to the Senate, which was 
introduced in the Senate by Mr. Thurmond as S. 2060 and placed 
on the Senate Calendar (S. Rpt. 105-189). On May 11, 1998, the 
Senate Committee on Armed Services reported an original measure 
to the Senate, which was introduced in the Senate by Mr. 
Thurmond as S. 2057 and placed on the Senate Calendar (No 
Written Report).
    The Senate considered S. 2057 on May 13, May 14, June 18, 
June 19, June 22, June 23, June 24, and June 25, 1998. On June 
25, 1998, the Senate passed S. 2057, amended, by a roll call 
vote of 88 yeas to 4 nays. S. 2057 was received in the House on 
July 20, 1998, and held at the desk. On October 21, 1998, S. 
2057 was referred to the House Committee on National Security. 
No further action was taken on S. 2057 in the 105th Congress.
    On June 25, 1998, the Senate, by unanimous consent, took 
H.R. 3616 from the Senate Calendar and passed the bill, amended 
with the text of S. 2057 as passed by the Senate. The Senate 
insisted on its amendment to H.R. 3616, requested a conference 
with the House, and appointed conferees.
    On July 22, 1998, the House disagreed to the Senate 
amendment to H.R. 3616, agreed to a conference with the Senate, 
and appointed conferees. Members of the Committee on Commerce 
were appointed as conferees. On July 22, and July 23, 1998, the 
House considered a motion to instruct the conferees. On July 
23, 1998, the House agreed to a motion to instruct the 
conferees by a roll call vote of 424 yeas to 0 nays, with 1 
voting present. The House also agreed to a motion to close 
portions of the conference by a roll call vote of 412 yeas to 5 
nays.
    The conference report on H.R. 3616 was filed in the House 
on September 22, 1998 (H. Rpt. 105-736).
    The Committee on Rules met on September 23, 1998, and 
granted a rule providing for the consideration of the 
conference report on H.R. 3616. The rule was filed in the House 
as H. Res. 549. On September 24, 1998, the House passed H. Res. 
549 by a voice vote.
    The House agreed to the conference report by a roll call 
vote of 373 yeas to 50 nays on September 24, 1998. The Senate 
considered the conference report on September 30, and October 
1, 1998; and on October 1, 1998, the Senate agreed to the 
conference report by a roll call vote of 96 yeas to 2 nays.
    H.R. 3616 was presented to the President on October 6, 
1998. The President signed H.R. 3616 into law on October 17, 
1998 (Public Law 105-261).

           year 2000 information and readiness disclosure act

                Public Law 105-271 (S. 2392, H.R. 4455)

    To encourage the disclosure and exchange of information 
about computer processing problems, test practices and test 
results, and related matters in connection with the transition 
to the year 2000.

Summary

    S. 2392 provides that no Year 2000 Readiness Disclosure 
shall be admissible in any civil action unless the proponent of 
admissibility establishes that the Disclosure was knowingly 
false or misleading or that the Disclosure was republished from 
a third party without disclosure of republication and that no 
attempt was made to verify the original statement. S. 2392 
prohibits a Year 2000 Disclosure Statement from being 
interpreted or construed as an amendment to or alteration of a 
written contract or warranty. In addition, S. 2392 authorizes 
Federal agencies to request the voluntary provision of 
information relating to Year 2000 and to protect such 
information from (1) disclosure to any third party, including 
disclosure under the Freedom of Information Act, and (2) use in 
any civil action.
    S. 2392 provides that antitrust laws shall not apply to 
conduct, including making and implementing agreements solely 
for the purpose of: (1) facilitating responses intended to 
correct or avoid a failure of Year 2000 processing in a 
computer system, including computer components and computer 
hardware and software; and (2) communicating or disclosing 
information to help correct or avoid the effects of Year 2000 
processing failure. This antitrust exemption only applies to 
conduct that occurs, or an agreement that is made and 
implemented, after the date of enactment of this Act and before 
July 14, 2001. In addition, this exemption does not apply with 
respect to conduct that involves or results in agreements to 
boycott any person, allocate a market, or fix prices or output.
    S. 2392 applies to Year 2000 statements made beginning on 
July 14, 1998, and ending on July 14, 2001, and to Year 2000 
readiness disclosures made beginning on the date of enactment 
of this Act and ending on July 14, 2001. A person or entity 
that published a Year 2000 statement between January 1, 1996, 
and the date of enactment of this Act may designate that Year 
2000 statement as a Year 2000 readiness disclosure if: (1) the 
Year 2000 statement complied with the requirements of section 
3(9) of this Act when made; and (2) within 45 days of enactment 
of this Act, the person or entity seeking the designation 
provides individual notice that the Year 2000 statement is 
being designated as a Year 2000 readiness disclosure and 
prominently posts notice on its Year 2000 website.
    In addition, S. 2392 provides that the President's Year 
2000 Council may establish and terminate working groups 
composed of Federal employees who will engage outside 
organizations in discussions to address Year 2000 problems and 
share information related to Year 2000 readiness.
    Finally, S. 2392 directs the Administrator of General 
Services, in consultation with other Federal agencies, State 
and local governments, and other interested parties, to create 
and maintain until July 14, 2001, a national Year 2000 Website 
designed to assist consumers, small businesses and local 
governments in obtaining information from other governmental 
websites, hotlines or information clearinghouses about Year 
2000 processing.

Legislative History

    S. 2392 was introduced in the Senate by Mr. Bennett and 
four cosponsors on June 30, 1998. The bill was read twice and 
referred to the Senate Committee on the Judiciary. H.R. 4455, a 
companion bill, was introduced in the House by Mr. Dreier and 
eleven original cosponsors on August 6, 1998, and referred 
solely to the Committee on the Judiciary. On September 29, 
1998, the Chairman of the Committee on Commerce sent a letter 
to the Speaker of the House indicating that H.R. 4455 included 
provisions within the jurisdiction of the House Committee on 
Commerce.
    The Senate Committee on the Judiciary met to consider S. 
2392 on September 17, 1998, and ordered the bill reported to 
the Senate, amended. On the same day, the Senate Committee on 
the Judiciary reported S. 2392 to the Senate (No Written 
Report).
    On September 28, 1998, by unanimous consent, the Senate 
proceeded to the immediate consideration of S. 2392, and passed 
the bill, amended. S. 2393 was received in the House on 
September 29, 1998, and held at the desk.
    On October 1, 1998, the House considered S. 2392 under 
Suspension of the Rules, and passed the bill by a voice vote, 
clearing the measure for the President.
    S. 2392 was presented to the President on October 8, 1998. 
The President signed S. 2392 into law on October 19, 1998 
(Public Law 105-271).

         departments of veterans affairs and housing and urban

          development, and independent agencies appropriations

                               act, 1999

                 Public Law 105-276 (H.R. 4194, S. 2168)

                    (Consumer Protection Provisions)

    Making appropriations for the Departments of Veterans 
Affairs and Housing and Urban Development, and for sundry 
independent agencies, boards, commissions, corporations, and 
offices for the fiscal year ending September 30, 1999, and for 
other purposes.

Summary

    Public Law 105-276 provides appropriations for Fiscal Year 
1999 for the Departments of Veterans Affairs and Housing and 
Urban Development, and for sundry independent agencies, boards, 
commissions, corporations, and offices. Additionally, the Act 
includes a number of provisions falling with the jurisdiction 
of the Committee on Commerce, including several provisions 
dealing with consumer protection issues.
    Section 423 requires the Consumer Product Safety Commission 
(CPSC) to contract with the Committee on Toxicology of the 
National Academy of Sciences (NAS) to conduct an independent 
study of the potential toxicologic risks of all flame-retardant 
chemicals identified by the NAS and CPSC as likely candidates 
for use in residential upholstered furniture for the purpose of 
meeting regulations proposed by CPSC for flame resistance of 
residential upholstered furniture. The CPSC is required to 
consider the results of this study before promulgating any 
notice of proposed rulemaking or final rulemaking setting 
flammability standards for residential upholstered furniture.
    Section 429 requires CPSC to propose for comment a 
revocation of the amendments to the standards for the 
flammability of children's sleepwear, and to issue a final rule 
not later than July 1, 1999. Section 429(b) directs the General 
Accounting Office to study children's burn incident data 
resulting from the ignition of children's sleepwear from small 
open flame sources. The United States Fire Administration is 
required to conduct a 12-month pilot project to promote the 
installation and maintenance of smoke detectors in the 
localities of highest risk for residential fires, and then to 
transmit the results of its pilot project to CPSC and the 
Congress.
    The Chairman worked with the Members of the House and 
Senate Appropriations Committees to develop both of these 
provisions.

Legislative History

    H.R. 4194 was introduced in the House on July 8, 1998, by 
Mr. Lewis, as an original measure, and reported to the House on 
the same day by the Committee on Appropriations (H. Rpt. 105-
610). The House considered H.R. 4194 on July 17, July 23, and 
July 29, 1998. On July 29, 1998, the House passed H.R. 4194, 
amended, by a roll call vote of 259 yeas to 164 nays.
    On June 12, 1998, the Senate Committee on Appropriations 
reported S. 2168, a companion bill, to the Senate (S. Rpt. 105-
216). The Senate considered S. 2168 on July 6, July 7, July 16, 
and July 17, 1998. On July 17, 1998, the Senate passed S. 2168, 
amended, by a voice vote.
    On July 30, 1998, H.R. 4194 was received in the Senate. 
Pursuant to a unanimous consent agreement reached on July 16, 
1998, the Senate proceeded to the immediate consideration of 
H.R. 4194; passed the bill amended with the text of S. 2168, as 
passed by the Senate on July 17, 1998; insisted on the Senate 
amendment to H.R. 4194; requested a conference with the House; 
and appointed conferees. Passage of S. 2168 was then vitiated 
and the bill was indefinitely postponed.
    On September 15, 1998, the House disagreed to the Senate 
amendment to H.R. 4194, agreed to a conference with the Senate, 
and appointed conferees. The House, on September 15, 1998, also 
agreed by a roll call vote of 405 yeas to 0 nays to a motion to 
instruct the conferees. The conference report on H.R. 4194 was 
filed in the House on October 5, 1998 (H. Rpt. 105-769). On 
October 6, 1998, the House agreed to the conference report on 
H.R. 4194 by a roll call vote of 409 yeas to 14 nays. The 
Senate agreed to the conference report on H.R. 4194 on October 
8, 1998, by a roll call vote of 96 yeas to 1 nay.
    On October 10, 1998, H.R. 4194 was presented to the 
President. On October 21, 1998, the President signed H.R. 4194 
into law (Public Law 105-276).

  omnibus consolidated and emergency supplemental appropriations act, 
                                  1999

                 Public Law 105-277 (H.R. 4328, S. 2307)

        (Telecommunications and Motor Vehicle Safety Provisions)

    To make omnibus consolidated and emergency appropriations 
for the fiscal year ending September 30, 1999, and for other 
purposes.

Summary

    Public law 105-277 served as an omnibus continuing 
appropriations measure for those Federal agencies that did not 
have individual Fiscal Year 1999 appropriations measures 
enacted into law. Affected agencies and entities included the 
Departments of Agriculture, Justice, Commerce, State, Interior, 
Labor, Health and Human Services, Education, Transportation, 
and the Treasury. The bill also contained other Federal 
appropriations for the District of Columbia, foreign 
operations, military readiness, anti-terrorism, Year 2000 
conversion of Federal information technology systems, counter-
drug activities and interdiction, and other emergencies. 
Additionally, a number of legislative provisions, some within 
the jurisdiction of the Committee on Commerce, were included in 
Public Law 105-277.

                        Telecommunications Issues

    Public Law 105-277 includes, in Division C-Other Matters, 
five titles affecting interstate and foreign communications. 
Title XI, entitled ``Moratorium on Certain Taxes,'' provides 
that, for a period of three years, no State or political 
subdivision shall impose a tax on Internet access, unless such 
tax was generally imposed and actually enforced prior to 
October 1, 1998. The three year moratorium also applies to a 
State's or political subdivision's ability to impose multiple 
or discriminatory taxes on electronic commerce. Notwithstanding 
the ``generally imposed and actually enforced'' exception to 
the three year moratorium, the title adds two additional 
exceptions. The first exception states that the moratorium is 
not applicable to any entity that knowingly makes a 
communication for commercial purposes on the World Wide Web 
that is available to minors and contains any material that is 
harmful to minors, unless such entity restricts access to 
minors. An entity may restrict access to minors by requiring 
the use of a credit card, debit account, adult access code, 
adult personal identification number, digital certificate, or 
any other reasonable measure. The second exception states that 
the moratorium is not applicable to an Internet access 
provider, unless, at the time of entering into an agreement 
with a customer for the provision of Internet access services, 
such provider offers the customer screening software that is 
designed to permit the customer to limit access to material on 
the Internet that is harmful to minors.
    Title XI also provides that during the course of the 
moratorium, a 19-member advisory commission shall be assembled 
to conduct a thorough study of Federal, State, local, and 
international taxation of transactions using the Internet and 
Internet access, and other comparable intrastate, interstate 
and international sales activities. The commission is required 
to report its findings to Congress within 18 months.
    Title XII, entitled ``Other Provisions,'' provides a number 
of miscellaneous provisions relating to taxation of the 
Internet. For example, this title contains several declarations 
that the Internet should be free of new Federal taxes and that 
it should be free of foreign tariffs, trade barriers, and other 
restrictions. This title also provides that the United States 
Trade Representative is required to consider the policies and 
practices of each foreign country that constitute significant 
barriers to United States electronic commerce.
    Title XIII, entitled ``Children's Online Privacy 
Protection,'' prohibits an operator of a website or online 
service directed to children, or any operator with actual 
knowledge, to collect personal information from a child. Under 
this title, the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) is given the 
authority to adopt regulations regarding the collection of 
certain information from children and to determine when parents 
are required to consent to the disclosure of personal 
information from children. Also, industry is given the 
opportunity to develop self-regulations that would govern the 
collection of personal information from children in lieu of the 
regulations developed by the FTC. With respect to enforcement, 
this title permits the attorney general of each State to bring 
a civil action on behalf of the residents of the State for 
violations of the FTC regulations. Finally, this title requires 
the FTC to review its regulations not later than five years 
after the effective date of its initial regulations.
    Title XIV, entitled ``Child Online Protection,'' prohibits 
any person from making a communication on the World Wide Web 
for commercial purposes to any minor that includes material 
that is harmful to minors. Persons violating this title may be 
subject to criminal and civil penalties. The title specifically 
excludes telecommunications carriers, Internet service 
providers, and other entities not involved in the selection or 
alteration of the content of the communication from being 
subject to the general prohibition. The title also states that 
it is an affirmative defense to prosecution if the defendant, 
in good faith, has restricted access by minors to material that 
is harmful to minors by requiring the use of a credit card, 
debit account, adult access code, adult personal identification 
code, digital certificate, or any other reasonable measure that 
is feasible under available technology. In addition, this title 
requires providers of interactive computer service to notify 
its customers that parental control protections (such as 
computer hardware, software, and filtering services) are 
commercially available to assist consumers with limiting access 
to material that is harmful to minors. To address other matters 
affecting a minor's access to material harmful to minors on the 
Internet, Title XIV establishes a temporary commission on 
online child protection. The commission is required to study 
technological solutions that will help reduce access by minors 
to material that is harmful to minors on the Internet. These 
technological solutions may also be used to meet the 
requirements for use as affirmative defenses under the general 
prohibition identified in the title.
    Title XVII, entitled ``Government Paperwork Elimination 
Act,'' gives the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) the 
authority to provide for the acquisition and use of information 
technologies for electronic submission of information to 
executive agencies. This authority also includes the ability to 
require executive agencies to accept electronic signatures as 
part of any electronic submission. The Director of OMB is 
required to develop procedures for implementation of this 
authority to ensure that executive agencies use and accept 
electronic signatures. The Director of OMB, in consultation 
with the National Telecommunications and Information 
Administration, is also required to conduct an ongoing study on 
the use of electronic signatures. The study must consider 
paperwork reduction and electronic commerce, individual 
privacy, and security and authenticity of transactions. 
Periodic reports to Congress on the results of the study are 
also required.

                      Motor Vehicle Safety Issues

    Public Law 105-277 includes, in Division A-Omnibus 
Consolidated Appropriations, Department of Transportation and 
Related Agencies Appropriations Act, 1999, Title III-General 
Provisions, Section 351, an amendment to section 30113 of title 
49, U.S. Code, to harmonize current safety statutes by bringing 
bumper standards within the scope of the National Highway 
Traffic Safety Administration's exemption discretion for case-
by-case determinations. This authority was necessary because 
several small-volume manufacturers of specialty automobiles 
needed the temporary exemptions to remain competitive during 
the initial years of vehicle production. The provision does not 
grant the Secretary of Transportation (the Secretary) authority 
to issue a permanent exemption from the bumper safety 
standards, but allows the Secretary to issue temporary waivers, 
similar to waivers that may be issued for other motor vehicle 
safety standards.

Legislative History

    On July 22, 1998, the Committee on Appropriations ordered 
reported an original measure to the House, which was introduced 
in the House on July 24, 1998, as H.R. 4328. On July 24, 1998, 
the Committee on Appropriations reported H.R. 4328 to the House 
(H. Rpt. 105-648).
    The Committee on Rules met on July 28, 1998, and granted a 
rule providing for the consideration of H.R. 4328. The rule was 
filed in the House as H. Res. 510. On July 29, 1998, the House 
passed H. Res. 510 by a voice vote.
    The House considered H.R. 4328 on July 29 and July 30, 
1998; and on July 30, 1998, passed the bill, amended, by a roll 
call vote of 391 yeas to 25 nays. H.R. 4328 was received in the 
Senate on July 30, 1998.
    On July 14, 1998, the Senate Committee on Appropriations 
ordered reported an original measure to the Senate as the 
Senate companion bill, which was introduced in the Senate by 
Mr. Shelby on July 15, 1998 as S. 2307. The Senate Committee on 
Appropriations reported S. 2307 to the Senate on July 15, 1998 
(S. Rpt. 105-249). The Senate considered S. 2307 on July 23 and 
July 24, 1998. On July 24, 1998, by a roll call vote of 90 yeas 
to 1 nay, the Senate passed S. 3207, amended.
    On July 30, 1998, pursuant to a unanimous consent request 
agreed to on July 23, 1998, the Senate proceeded to the 
immediate consideration of H.R. 4328, struck all after the 
enacting clause and inserted in lieu thereof the text of S. 
2307, as passed by the Senate, and passed H.R. 4328, as 
amended. The Senate then insisted on its amendment to H.R. 
4328, requested a conference with the House, and appointed 
conferees. Finally, on July 30, 1998, the Senate vitiated 
passage of S. 2307 and indefinitely postponed further 
consideration of that bill.
    On September 15, 1998, the House disagreed to the Senate 
amendment to H.R. 4328, agreed to a conference with the Senate, 
and appointed conferees. The House, on September 15, 1998, also 
agreed to a motion to instruct conferees by a roll call vote of 
249 yeas to 161 nays. The conference report on H.R. 4328 was 
filed in the House on October 19, 1998 (H. Rpt. 105-825).
    The Committee on Rules met on October 20, 1998, and granted 
a rule providing for the consideration of the conference report 
on H.R. 4328. The rule was filed in the House as H. Res. 605. 
On October 20, 1998, the House passed H. Res. 605 by a roll 
call vote of 333 yeas to 88 nays.
    The House agreed to the conference report on H.R. 4328 by a 
roll call vote of 333 yeas to 95 nays on October 20, 1998. The 
Senate agreed to the conference report by a roll call vote of 
65 yeas to 29 nays on October 21, 1998.
    H.R. 4328 was presented to the President on October 21, 
1998. The President signed H.R. 4328 into law on October 21, 
1998 (Public Law 105-277).

               armored car reciprocity amendments of 1998

                      Public Law 105-287 (H.R. 624)

    To amend the Armored Car Industry Reciprocity Act of 1993 
to clarify certain requirements and to improve the flow of 
interstate commerce.

Summary

    Public Law 105-287 amends section 3 of the Armored Car 
Industry Reciprocity Act of 1993 (15 U.S.C. Sec. 5902) to 
provide that if an armored car crew member employed by an 
armored car company: (1) has a weapons permit issued by an 
appropriate State agency in the State in which the crew member 
is primarily employed to carry a weapon or weapons while in the 
service of such company and the State meets the statute's 
minimum criteria; and (2) has met all other applicable 
requirements in the State in which the crew member is employed, 
then that crew member shall be entitled to lawfully carry any 
weapon authorized by the license and function as an armored car 
crew member in any State.
    Further, it clarifies the minimum requirements for States' 
licenses to be granted reciprocity. When issuing an initial 
license to an armored car crew member, the State must determine 
to its satisfaction that (1) the crew member has received both 
classroom and range training in weapons safety and marksmanship 
during the current year, and (2) that receipt or possession of 
a weapon by the crew member would not violate Federal law, as 
determined on the basis of a criminal records background check 
conducted during the current year. When issuing renewal 
licenses, the State must determine to its satisfaction that the 
crew member (1) received continuing training in weapons safety 
and marksmanship from a qualified instructor for each weapon 
that the crew member is licensed to carry, and (2) the receipt 
or possession of a weapon by the crew member would not violate 
Federal law, as determined by the agency.

Legislative History

    H.R. 624 was introduced in the House by Representatives 
Whitfield, Oxley, and Manton on February 6, 1997. The bill was 
referred solely to the Committee on Commerce.
    On February 11, 1997, the Subcommittee on 
Telecommunications, Trade, and Consumer Protection held a 
hearing on H.R. 624, at which the Subcommittee received 
testimony from a representative of an industry association and 
a State regulator. Immediately following the hearing on 
February 11, 1997, the Subcommittee met in open markup session 
and approved H.R. 624 for Full Committee consideration, without 
amendment, by a voice vote.
    The Full Committee met in open markup session to consider 
H.R. 624 on February 13, 1997, and ordered the bill reported to 
the House, without amendment, by a voice vote, a quorum being 
present. On February 25, 1997, the Committee on Commerce 
reported H.R. 624 to the House (H. Rpt. 105-6).
    The House considered H.R. 624 on February 25, 1997, under 
Suspension of the Rules, and passed the bill by a roll call 
vote of 416 yeas to 0 nays. On February 27, 1997, H.R. 624 was 
received in the Senate, read twice, and referred to the Senate 
Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation.
    The Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and 
Transportation met to consider H.R. 624, on November 4, 1997, 
and ordered the bill reported to the Senate, without amendment. 
On September 1, 1998, the Senate Committee on Commerce, 
Science, and Transportation reported H.R. 624 to the Senate (S. 
Rpt. 105-297). On October 9, 1998, by unanimous consent, the 
Senate proceeded to the immediate consideration of H.R. 624, 
and passed the bill without amendment, clearing the measure for 
the President.
    H.R. 624 was presented to the President on October 20, 
1998. The President signed H.R. 624 into law on October 27, 
1998 (Public Law 105-287).

                    digital millennium copyright act

                 Public Law 105-304 (H.R. 2281, S. 2037)

    To amend title 17, United States Code, to implement the 
World Intellectual Property Organization Copyright Treaty and 
Performances and Phonograms Treaty, and for other purposes.

Summary

    The Committee on Commerce is in the midst of a wide-ranging 
review of all issues relating to electronic commerce, including 
the issues raised by this legislation. The growth of electronic 
commerce is having a profound impact on the nation's economy. 
Over the past decade, the information technology sector of our 
economy has grown rapidly and is seen by many as playing a 
leading role in the current economic expansion.
    Exercising its jurisdiction under the Commerce Clause of 
the Constitution and under the applicable precedents of the 
House, the Committee on Commerce has a long and well-
established role in assessing the impact of possible changes in 
law on the use and the availability of the products and 
services that have made our information technology industry the 
envy of the world. The Committee therefore paid particular 
attention to the impacts on electronic commerce of the bill 
produced by the Senate and the House Judiciary Committees.
    Much like the agricultural and industrial revolutions that 
preceded it, the digital revolution has unleashed a wave of 
economic prosperity and job growth. Today, the U.S. information 
technology industry is developing exciting new products to 
enhance the lives of individuals throughout the world, and our 
telecommunications industry is developing new means of 
distributing information to these consumers in every part of 
the globe. In this environment, the development of new laws and 
regulations could well have a profound impact on the growth of 
electronic commerce.
    Article 1, section 8, clause 8 of the United States 
Constitution authorizes the Congress to promulgate laws 
governing the scope of proprietary rights in, and use 
privileges with respect to, intangible ``works of authorship.'' 
As set forth in the Constitution, the fundamental goal is 
``[t]o promote the Progress of Science and useful Arts . . .'' 
In the more than 200 years since enactment of the first Federal 
copyright law in 1790, the maintenance of this balance has 
contributed significantly to the growth of markets for works of 
the imagination as well as the industries that enable the 
public to have access to and enjoy such works.
    Congress has historically advanced this constitutional 
objective by regulating the use of information--not the devices 
or means by which the information is delivered or used by 
information consumers--and by ensuring an appropriate balance 
between the interests of copyright owners and information 
users. Section 106 of the Copyright Act of 1976, 17 U.S.C. 106, 
for example, establishes certain rights copyright owners have 
in their works, including limitations on the use of these works 
without their authorization. Sections 107 through 121 of the 
Copyright Act, 17 U.S.C. 107-121, set forth the circumstances 
in which such uses will be deemed permissible or otherwise 
lawful even though unauthorized. In general, all of these 
provisions are technology neutral. They do not regulate 
commerce in information technology. Instead, they prohibit 
certain actions and create exceptions to permit certain conduct 
deemed to be in the greater public interest, all in a way that 
balances the interests of copyright owners and users of 
copyrighted works.
    As proposed by the Clinton Administration, however, the 
anti-circumvention provisions to implement the World 
Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) treaties would have 
represented a radical departure from this tradition. In the 
view of the Committee, there was no need to create such risks, 
including the risk that enactment of the bill could establish 
the legal framework that would inexorably create a ``pay-per-
use'' society. Thus, the Committee on Commerce endeavored to 
specify, with as much clarity as possible, how the anti-
circumvention right, established in title 17 but outside of the 
Copyright Act, would be qualified to maintain balance between 
the interests of content creators and information users. The 
Committee considered it particularly important to ensure that 
the concept of fair use remain firmly established in the law, 
and that consumer electronics, telecommunications, computer, 
and other legitimate device manufacturers have the freedom to 
design new products without being subjected to the threat of 
litigation for making design decisions.
    Title I of H.R. 2281, as enacted, in lieu of a new 
statutory prohibition against the act of circumvention, creates 
a rulemaking proceeding intended to ensure that persons 
(including institutions) will continue to be able to get access 
to copyrighted works in the future. Given the overall concern 
of the Committee that the Administration's original proposal 
created the potential for the development of a ``pay-per-use'' 
society, the Committee on Commerce felt strongly about the need 
to establish a mechanism that would ensure that libraries, 
universities, and consumers generally would continue to be able 
to exercise their fair use rights and the other exceptions that 
have ensured access to works. Under section 1201(a)(1)(C), the 
Librarian of Congress must make certain determinations based on 
the recommendation of the Register of Copyrights, who must 
consult with the Assistant Secretary of Commerce for 
Communications and Information before making any such 
recommendations, which must be made on the record. The 
Committee ensured that the Assistant Secretary would have a 
substantial and meaningful role in making fair use and related 
decisions, and that his or her views would be made a part of 
the record.
    Title I also makes it illegal to manufacture, import, offer 
to the public, provide, or otherwise traffic in so-called 
``black boxes''--devices with no substantial non-infringing 
uses that are expressly intended to facilitate circumvention of 
technological measures for purposes of gaining access to or 
making a copy of a work. Section 1201(a)(3) defines 
``circumvent a technological protection measure,'' and when a 
technological protection measure ``effectively controls access 
to a work.''
    Title I similarly defines ``circumvent protection afforded 
by a technological measure,'' and when a technological measure 
``effectively protects a right of a copyright owner under title 
17, United States Code.'' Section 1201(c)(3) provides that 
nothing in section 1201 requires that the design of, or design 
and selection of parts and components for, a consumer 
electronics, telecommunications, or computer product provide 
for a response to any particular technological measure, so long 
as the device does not otherwise violate section 1201.
    Finally, Title I requires that certain analog recording 
devices respond to two forms of copy control technology that 
are in wide use in the market today. Neither employs encryption 
or scrambling of the content being protected, but they have 
been subject to extensive multi-industry consultations, 
testing, and analysis.
    Title II of H.R. 2281, as enacted, exempts on-line service 
providers (OSPs) (e.g., Bell Atlantic, AT&T, America OnLine) 
from copyright liability to the extent that an OSP could 
qualify for one of two ``safe harbors.'' The first safe harbor 
covers fact situations where the OSP is serving as a mere 
conduit for copyrighted material. Specifically, an OSP would 
not be liable for infringement where it could demonstrate (1) 
that it merely transmitted copyrighted material over its own 
network at the request of a third party, (2) that the 
transmission, and any storage (or ``copying'') of material 
along the way, occurs through an indiscriminate technological 
process (i.e., the OSP takes no part in the selection of the 
copyrighted material), and (3) the material is stored for a 
period no longer than necessary to carry out the transmission.
    The second safe harbor covers instances where the OSP 
stores copyrighted material on its network at the direction of 
another user. In particular, an OSP would not be liable for 
infringement where it could demonstrate (1) that it did not 
have actual or constructive knowledge that the material stored 
on its network is infringing material, and (2) it is not 
receiving a financial benefit that is directly attributable to 
infringing activity.

Legislative History

    H.R. 2281 was introduced in the House by Representatives 
Coble Hyde, Conyers, and Frank of Massachusetts on July 29, 
1997. The bill was referred solely to the Committee on the 
Judiciary.
    The Committee on the Judiciary met to consider H.R. 2281 on 
April 1, 1998, and ordered the bill reported to the House, 
amended, by a voice vote. On May 22, 1998, the Committee on the 
Judiciary reported H.R. 2281 to the House (H. Rpt. 105-551, 
Part 1). On May 22, 1998, the bill was referred to the 
Committee on Commerce and the Committee on Ways and Means, 
sequentially, for a period ending not later than June 19, 1998.
    On June 5, 1998, the Subcommittee on Telecommunications, 
Trade, and Consumer Protection held a legislative hearing on 
H.R. 2281. On June 17 and June 18, 1998, the Subcommittee on 
Telecommunications, Trade, and Consumer Protection met in open 
markup session to consider H.R. 2281. On June 18, 1998, the 
Subcommittee approved H.R. 2281 for Full Committee 
consideration, amended, by a voice vote.
    In light of the serious concerns raised at the hearing, and 
in recognition of the complexity of the issues posed by the 
legislation, the Chairman of the Committee on Commerce 
requested that the Committee's referral be further extended. On 
June 19, 1998, the referral of H.R. 2281 to the Committee on 
Commerce and the Committee on Ways and Means was extended for a 
period ending not later than June 26, 1998. On June 26, 1998, 
the referral of H.R. 2281 to the Committee on Commerce and the 
Committee on Ways and Means was extended for a period ending 
not later than July 21, 1998. On July 21, 1998, the referral of 
H.R. 2281 to the Committee on Commerce and the Committee on 
Ways and Means was extended for a period ending not later than 
July 22, 1998.
    On July 17, 1998, the Full Committee met in open markup 
session and ordered H.R. 2281 reported to the House, amended, 
by a roll call vote of 41 yeas to 0 nays. The Committee on 
Commerce reported H.R. 2281 to the House on July 22, 1998 (H. 
Rpt. 105-551, Part 2). The Committee on Ways and Means was 
discharged from further consideration of H.R. 2281 on July 22, 
1998.
    The House considered H.R. 2281 under Suspension of the 
Rules on August 4, 1998, and passed the bill by a voice vote. 
On August 31, 1998, H.R. 2281 was received in the Senate, read 
twice, and placed on the Senate calendar.
    Previously, on May 6, 1998, the Senate Committee on the 
Judiciary reported an original measure to the Senate as 
companion legislation, which was introduced in the Senate by 
Mr. Hatch as S. 2037. On May 11, 1998, the Senate Committee on 
the Judiciary filed a report in the Senate (S. Rpt. 105-190). 
The Senate considered S. 2037 on May 14, 1998, and passed the 
bill, amended, by a roll call vote of 99 yeas to 0 nays.
    On September 17, 1998, the Senate, by unanimous consent, 
took H.R. 2281 from the Senate calendar and passed the bill, 
amended with the text of S. 2037 as passed by the Senate. The 
Senate then insisted on its amendment to H.R. 2281, requested a 
conference with the House, and appointed conferees. On 
September 17, 1998, the Senate vitiated passage of S. 2037 and 
indefinitely postponed further consideration of the bill.
    On September 23, 1998, the House disagreed to the Senate 
amendment to H.R. 2281, agreed to a conference with the Senate, 
and appointed conferees. Members of the Committee on Commerce 
were appointed as conferees. The conference report on H.R. 2281 
was filed in the House on October 8, 1998 (H. Rpt. 105-796).
    On October 8, 1998, the Senate, by unanimous consent, 
proceeded to the immediate consideration of the conference 
report on H.R. 2281 and agreed to the conference report. The 
House considered the conference report under Suspension of the 
Rules on October 12, 1998, and agreed to the conference report 
by a voice vote.
    H.R. 2281 was presented to the President on October 20, 
1998. The President signed H.R. 2281 into law on October 28, 
1998 (Public Law 105-304).

              next generation internet research act of 1998

                 Public Law 105-305 (H.R. 3332, S. 1609)

    To amend the High-Performance Computing Act of 1991 to 
authorize appropriations for fiscal years 1999 and 2000 for the 
Next Generation Internet program, to require the President's 
Information Technology Advisory Committee to monitor and give 
advice concerning the development and implementation of the 
Next Generation Internet program and report to the President 
and the Congress on its activities, and for other purposes.

Summary

    Public Law 105-305 authorizes appropriations to the 
Department of Defense, the Department of Energy, the National 
Aeronautics and Space Administration, the National Institutes 
of Health, the National Institute of Standards and Technology 
and the National Science Foundation for the Next Generation 
Internet initiative. The purpose of this initiative is to 
foster the development and deployment of advanced Internet 
technologies, networks, and applications.

Legislative History

    S. 1609 was introduced in the Senate by Mr. Frist on 
February 4, 1998. The bill was read twice and referred to the 
Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation. On 
March 12, 1998, the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and 
Transportation met to consider S. 1609, and ordered the bill 
reported to the Senate, without amendment, by a voice vote. On 
April 2, 1998, the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and 
Transportation reported S. 1609 to the Senate (S. Rpt. 105-
173).
    By unanimous consent, on June 26, 1998, the Senate 
proceeded to the immediate consideration of S. 1609, and passed 
the bill, amended. S. 1609 was received in the House on July 
14, 1998, and held at the desk. On October 21, 1998, S. 1609 
was referred solely to the House Committee on Science. No 
further action was taken on S. 1609 in the 105th Congress.
    H.R. 3332, a companion bill, was introduced in the House by 
Representatives Sensenbrenner and Brown of California on March 
4, 1998. The bill was referred solely to the Committee on 
Science. On May 13, 1998, the Committee on Science met to 
consider H.R. 3332 and ordered the bill reported to the House, 
amended, by a voice vote.
    On September 11, 1998, the Chairman of the Committee on 
Commerce sent a letter to the Chairman of the Committee on 
Science, indicating that H.R. 3332 included provisions within 
the jurisdiction of the Commerce Committee. The Chairman 
further stated that the Commerce Committee had reviewed the 
action taken by the Science Committee and, in order to expedite 
consideration of this measure, the Commerce Committee would not 
insist on its right to a sequential referral of H.R. 3332, 
provided that the waiver of its right to a sequential referral 
would not prejudice the Commerce Committee's future 
jurisdictional interests in the legislation. The Commerce 
Committee also reserved its authority to seek conferees on the 
provisions of the bill that are within the Commerce Committee's 
jurisdiction during any House-Senate conference that would be 
convened on the legislation. On September 11, 1998, the 
Chairman of the Committee on Science sent a letter to the 
Chairman of the Commerce Committee acknowledging the Commerce 
Committee's jurisdictional concerns with regards to H.R. 3332 
and the Commerce Committee's prerogatives with respect to this 
bill.
    The House considered H.R. 3332 under Suspension of the 
Rules on September 14, 1998, thereby discharging the Committee 
on Science from further consideration of the bill. H.R. 3332 
passed the House by a voice vote. On September 15, 1998, H.R. 
3332 was received in the Senate, read twice, and referred to 
the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation. 
On October 8, 1998, by unanimous consent, the Senate Committee 
on Commerce, Science, and Transportation was discharged from 
further consideration of H.R. 3332. By unanimous consent, the 
Senate then proceeded to the immediate consideration of H.R. 
3332, and passed the bill without amendment, clearing the 
measure for the President.
    H.R. 3332 was presented to the President on October 20, 
1998. The President signed H.R. 3332 into law on October 28, 
1998 (Public Law 105-305).

        protection of children from sexual predators act of 1998

                     Public Law 105-314 (H.R. 3494)

    To amend title 18, United States Code, to protect children 
from sexual abuse and exploitation, and for other purposes.

Summary

    The purpose of H.R. 3494 is to strengthen existing law to 
prevent children from exploitation and criminal activity. As 
enacted into law, H.R. 3494 contains several provisions which 
fall within the jurisdiction of the Committee on Commerce. 
These provisions were specifically identified in a statement 
inserted in the Congressional Record on October 21, 1998, by 
the Chairman of the Committee on Commerce expressing support 
for the passage of H.R. 3494 and observing the Commerce 
Committee's jurisdiction over sections 401 and 901. Section 401 
prohibits the transfer of obscene material to minors (those 
under the age of 16). Section 901 provides for the Attorney 
General to contract with the National Academy of Sciences to 
conduct a study of computer-based technologies and other 
methods to address the problem of access to pornography by 
children.

Legislative History

    H.R. 3494 was introduced in the House by Mr. McCollum and 
fifteen cosponsors on March 18, 1998. The bill was referred 
solely to the Committee on the Judiciary.
    The Committee on the Judiciary met to consider H.R. 3494 on 
May 6, 1998, and ordered the bill reported to the House, 
amended, by a voice vote. On June 3, 1998, the Committee on the 
Judiciary reported H.R. 3494 to the House (H. Rpt. 105-557).
    The Committee on Rules met on June 10, 1998, and granted a 
rule providing for the consideration of H.R. 3494. The rule was 
filed in the House as H. Res. 465. On June 11, 1998, the House 
passed H. Res. 465 by a voice vote.
    The House considered H.R. 3494 on June 11, 1998, and passed 
the bill, amended, by a roll call vote of 416 yeas to 0 nays, 
with 1 voting present. On June 16, 1998, H.R. 3494 was received 
in the Senate, read twice, and referred to the Senate Committee 
on the Judiciary.
    The Senate Committee on the Judiciary met on September 17, 
1998, to consider H.R. 3494 and ordered the bill reported to 
the Senate, amended, by a voice vote. On September 17, 1998, 
the Senate Committee on the Judiciary reported H.R. 3494 to the 
Senate (No Written Report).
    On October 9, 1998, the Senate, by unanimous consent, 
proceeded to the immediate consideration of H.R. 3494 and 
passed the bill, amended. On October 12, 1998, the House 
considered H.R. 3494 under Suspension of the Rules and agreed 
to the Senate amendment to H.R. 3494 by a roll call vote of 400 
yeas to 0 nays, with 2 voting present, clearing the measure for 
the President.
    H.R. 3494 was presented to the President on October 20, 
1998. The President signed H.R. 3494 into law on October 30, 
1998 (Public Law 105-314).

           national salvage motor vehicle consumer protection

                              act of 1997

                           (H.R. 1839, S. 852)

    To establish nationally uniform requirements regarding the 
titling and registration of salvage, nonrepairable, and rebuilt 
vehicles.

Summary

    H.R. 1839 is intended to reduce motor vehicle titling fraud 
and improve consumer protection by establishing nationally 
uniform definitions and procedures for the titling, 
registration, and transfer of salvage, rebuilt salvage, and 
nonrepairable vehicles. H.R. 1839 conditions a State's 
participation in the National Motor Vehicle Title Information 
System (NMVTIS), a Federal computer system designed to assist 
States in locating information about automobile titling 
documents issued by other States, on a State's adoption of 
uniform definitions and procedures for the titling and 
registration of salvage, nonrepairable, and rebuilt 
automobiles. By participating in the NMVTIS, the State adopts 
the uniform definitions of salvage vehicle, nonrepairable 
vehicle, rebuilt salvage vehicle, and other terms, as well as 
procedures for issuing those titling documents.

Legislative History

    H.R. 1839 was introduced in the House by Mr. White and four 
cosponsors on June 10, 1997. The bill was referred to the 
Committee on Commerce, and in addition to the Committee on the 
Judiciary.
    On June 26, 1997, the Subcommittee on Telecommunications, 
Trade, and Consumer Protection held a hearing on H.R. 1839. The 
Subcommittee received testimony from representatives of the 
National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, insurance 
companies, national associations, and a State attorneys 
association.
    On July 16, 1997, the Subcommittee on Telecommunications, 
Trade, and Consumer Protection met in open markup session and 
approved H.R. 1839, amended, for Full Committee consideration, 
by a voice vote. On July 23, 1997, the Full Committee met in 
open markup session and ordered H.R. 1839 reported to the 
House, amended, by a voice vote, a quorum being present. The 
Committee on Commerce reported H.R. 1839 to the House on 
September 30, 1997 (H. Rpt. 105-285, Part 1). The referral of 
H.R. 1839 to the Committee on the Judiciary was extended for a 
period ending not later than September 30, 1997. On September 
30, 1997, the Committee on the Judiciary was discharged from 
further consideration of H.R. 1839.
    The House considered H.R. 1839 under Suspension of the 
Rules on November 4, 1997, and passed the bill by a roll call 
vote of 336 yeas to 72 nays. On November 5, 1997, H.R. 1839 was 
received in the Senate. On November 13, 1997, H.R. 1839 was 
read twice and referred to the Senate Committee on Commerce, 
Science, and Transportation. No further action was taken by the 
Senate on H.R. 1839 in the 105th Congress.
    S. 852, a companion bill, was introduced in the Senate by 
Senators Lott and Ford on June 9, 1997, read twice, and 
referred to the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and 
Transportation. On November 4, 1997, the Senate Committee on 
Commerce, Science, and Transportation ordered S. 852 reported 
to the Senate, amended. The Senate Committee on Commerce, 
Science, and Transportation reported S. 852 to the Senate on 
July 27, 1998 (S. Rpt. 105-265).
    On October 2, 1998, by unanimous consent, the Senate 
proceeded to the immediate consideration of S. 852 and passed 
the bill, amended. On October 5, 1998, S. 852 was received in 
the House and held at the desk.
    The House considered S. 852 under Suspension of the Rules 
on October 9 and October 10, 1998. On October 10, 1998, the 
House passed S. 852, amended, by a roll call vote of 271 yeas 
to 133 nays, with 2 voting present.
    On October 12, 1998, S. 852 was returned to the Senate and 
held it at the desk. No further action was taken by the Senate 
on S. 852 in the 105th Congress.

   telecommunications competition and consumer protection act of 1998

                          (H.R. 3888, S. 1618)

    To amend the Communications Act of 1934 to improve the 
protection of consumers against ``slamming'' by 
telecommunications carriers, and for other purposes.

Summary

    H.R. 3888, as passed by the House, has two key provisions. 
First, the legislation enacts a non-regulatory solution to the 
problem of ``slamming,'' which is the unauthorized changing of 
a consumer's provider of telephone exchange service or 
telephone toll service. The bill directs the Federal 
Communications Commission (FCC), in consultation with the 
Federal Trade Commission (FTC), industry and consumer groups, 
to establish a voluntary code of subscriber practices to combat 
slamming. The code established strong incentives for carriers 
to regulate their own solicitation practices and to provide 
consumers with adequate recourse in the event that their 
carrier selection is switched without their consent. To the 
extent carriers either choose not to comply with the code, or 
otherwise violate its terms, the bill requires the FCC to 
impose more stringent rules and penalties on those carriers.
    Second, the bill resolves outstanding rural cellular 
license disputes that have limited competitive wireless 
providers in three markets. In 1986, having assigned licenses 
in the nation's largest markets, the FCC established geographic 
boundaries for over 400 rural service areas (RSAs). The 
Commission created two frequency allocations for each of these 
RSAs: the B-block frequencies for incumbent wireline carriers 
(i.e., the local telephone providers), and A-block frequencies 
for other applicants. The Commission employed a lottery system 
in these markets in order to award licenses as quickly as 
possible. In 1992, the FCC disqualified the 1988 applications 
submitted by three lottery-winning partnerships in three RSAs 
located in parts of Minnesota, Florida, and Pennsylvania. The 
FCC concluded that the partnerships had not complied with 
foreign ownership restrictions under its interpretation of the 
Communications Act of 1934. The FCC did not allow the companies 
to amend their applications and bring themselves into 
compliance, in contrast to similarly situated applicants who 
had also participated in the same lotteries but were permitted 
to correct foreign ownership interests. Today, twelve years 
after it first established RSAs, the FCC still has not awarded 
permanent cellular licenses in the three RSAs. H.R. 3888 
requires the FCC to reinstate the disqualified applicants and 
assign the applicants as the tentative selectees in those 
markets. It also requires the Commission to allow the 
applicants to amend their original applications. Further, the 
bill requires the FCC to award permanent licenses for those 
markets within 90 days of enactment, with the selected licensee 
paying a fee established by the bill.

Legislative History

    S.1618 was introduced in the Senate by Mr. McCain and five 
cosponsors on February 9, 1998, read twice, and referred to the 
Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation. On 
March 12, 1998, the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and 
Transportation ordered S. 1618 reported to the Senate, amended. 
The Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation 
reported S. 1618 to the Senate on May 5, 1998 (S. Rpt. 105-
183).
    On May 12, 1998, by unanimous consent, the Senate proceeded 
to the immediate consideration of S. 1618 and passed the bill, 
amended, by a roll call vote of 99 yeas to 0 nays. S. 1618 was 
received in the House and held at the desk on May 13, 1998. On 
October 21, 1998, S. 1618 was referred to the Committee on 
Commerce. No further action was taken on S. 1618 in the 105th 
Congress.
    H.R. 3888, the House companion bill, was introduced in the 
House by Mr. Tauzin and seven cosponsors on May 14, 1998. The 
bill was referred solely to the Committee on Commerce.
    On June 23, 1998 and September 18, 1998, the Subcommittee 
on Telecommunications, Trade, and Consumer Protection held a 
legislative and an oversight hearing on the bill, respectively. 
Testimony was received from Members of Congress, Federal 
regulators, and representatives of industry trade groups, 
telecommunications companies, and consumer groups.
    On August 6, 1998, the Subcommittee on Telecommunications, 
Trade, and Consumer Protection met in open markup session to 
consider H.R. 3888 and approved the bill for Full Committee 
consideration, amended, by a voice vote, a quorum being 
present. On September 24, 1998, the Full Committee met in open 
markup session and ordered H.R. 3888 reported to the House, 
amended, by a voice vote. The Committee on Commerce reported 
H.R. 3888 to the House on October 8, 1998 (H. Rpt. 105-801).
    The House considered H.R. 3888 under Suspension of the 
Rules on October 12, 1998, and passed the bill, amended, by a 
voice vote. H.R. 3888 was received in the Senate on October 13, 
1998, and held at the desk. No further action was taken by the 
Senate on H.R. 3888 in the 105th Congress.

                wireless privacy enhancement act of 1998

                               (H.R. 2369)

    To amend the Communications Act of 1934 to strengthen and 
clarify prohibitions on electronic eavesdropping, and for other 
purposes.

Summary

    The purpose of H.R. 2369 is to enhance the privacy of users 
of cellular and other mobile communications services. This 
legislation is necessary to prohibit modification of currently 
available scanners and to prevent the development of a market 
for new digital scanners capable of intercepting digital 
communications.
    First, the bill extends current scanning receiver 
manufacturing restrictions to prevent the manufacture of 
scanners that are capable of intercepting communications in 
frequencies allocated to new wireless communications, namely 
personal communications services and protected paging and 
specialized mobile radio services. Second, the bill adds a 
prohibition on the modification of scanners and requires the 
Federal Communications Commission (FCC) to strengthen its rules 
to prevent the modification of scanning receivers, including 
through adopting additional requirements to prevent the 
tampering of scanning receivers. Third, the bill makes it 
unacceptable to intentionally intercept or divulge the content 
of private radio communications. Lastly, the bill improves the 
enforcement of privacy law by increasing the penalties 
available for violators and requiring the FCC to move 
expeditiously on investigations of potential violations.

Legislative History

    H.R. 2369 was introduced in the House by Mr. Tauzin and 
five cosponsors on July 31, 1997. The bill was referred solely 
to the Committee on Commerce.
    The Subcommittee held an oversight hearing on cellular 
privacy on February 5, 1997. Testimony was received from 
representatives of Federal agencies, equipment manufacturers, 
industry trade groups, privacy advocates, and law enforcement 
officials.
    On October 29, 1997, the Subcommittee met in open markup 
session to consider H.R. 2369, and approved the bill, amended, 
for Full Committee consideration, by a voice vote. On February 
26, 1998, the Full Committee met in open markup session to 
consider H.R. 2369 and ordered the bill reported to the House, 
as amended, by a voice vote, a quorum being present. The 
Committee reported H.R. 2369 to the House on March 3, 1998 (H. 
Rpt. 105-425).
    The Committee on Rules met on March 4, 1998, and granted a 
rule providing for the consideration of H.R. 2369. The rule was 
filed in the House as H. Res. 377. On March 5, 1998, the House 
passed H. Res. 377 by a voice vote.
    The House considered H.R. 2369 on March 5, 1998 and passed 
the bill, amended, by a roll call vote of 414 yeas to 1 nay.
    H.R. 2369 was received in the Senate on March 5, 1998, read 
twice, and referred to the Senate Committee on Commerce, 
Science, and Transportation. No further action was taken by the 
Senate on H.R. 2369 in the 105th Congress.

 national highway traffic safety administration reauthorization act of 
                                  1998

                               (H.R. 2691)

    To reauthorize and improve the operations of the National 
Highway Traffic Safety Administration.

Summary

    H.R. 2691 authorizes appropriations, places a restriction 
on the ability of the National Highway Traffic Safety 
Administration (NHTSA) to lobby State and local legislators, 
directs NHTSA to publicize information regarding the risks and 
benefits of safety equipment, provides decision criteria for 
occupant protection standards, authorizes certain activities to 
harmonize domestic and international motor vehicle safety 
standards, amends the American Automobile Labeling Act (49 
U.S.C. Sec. 32304), and also makes other miscellaneous and 
technical amendments to NHTSA's authorizing statutes.
    The legislation also reinstates NHTSA's authority to exempt 
certain motor vehicles imported for show or display from 
certain applicable motor vehicle safety standards, and directs 
NHTSA to conduct a study of the potential benefit of requiring 
the installation of a safety device in the trunk compartment to 
release the trunk lid from the inside.

Legislative History

    H.R. 2691 was introduced in the House by Mr. Tauzin on 
October 22, 1997. The bill was referred solely to the Committee 
on Commerce.
    The Subcommittee on Telecommunications, Trade, and Consumer 
Protection held a legislative hearing on H.R. 2691 on October 
29, 1997. The Subcommittee heard testimony from representatives 
of the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, the 
automobile industry, and public safety groups. Immediately 
following the hearing on October 29, 1997, the Subcommittee on 
Telecommunications, Trade, and Consumer Protection met in open 
markup session to consider H.R. 2691 and approved the bill for 
Full Committee consideration, amended, by a voice vote.
    The Full Committee met in open markup session to consider 
H.R. 2691 on March 25, 1998, and ordered the bill reported to 
the House, amended, by a voice vote, a quorum being present. 
The Committee on Commerce reported H.R. 2691 to the House on 
April 1, 1998 (H. Rpt. 105-447).
    The House considered H.R. 2691 under Suspension of the 
Rules on April 21, 1998, and passed the bill, amended, by a 
voice vote. H.R. 2691 was received in the Senate on April 22, 
1998, read twice, and referred to the Senate Committee on 
Commerce, Science, and Transportation.
    No further action was taken on H.R. 2691 in the 105th 
Congress. However, many of the legislative provisions of H.R. 
2691 were included in H.R. 2400, as passed by the House and 
Senate, and enacted into law as Public Law 105-178. For the 
legislative history of H.R. 2400, see the discussion of the 
Transportation Equity Act for the 21st Century in this section. 
Additionally, a technical correction to Public Law 105-178 
relating to the restriction on NHTSA's ability to lobby State 
and local legislators was included in both H.R. 3978, the TEA 
21 Restoration Act, as passed by the House, and H.R. 2676, the 
Internal Revenue Service Restructuring and Reform Act of 1998, 
as enacted into law (Public Law 105-206). For the legislative 
history of H.R. 3978 and H.R. 2676, see the discussion of those 
bills in this section.

   communications satellite competition and privatization act of 1998

                          (H.R. 1872, S. 2365)

    To amend the Communications Satellite Act of 1962 to 
promote competition and privatization in satellite 
communications, and for other purposes.

Summary

    The fundamental purposes of the bill are to encourage 
privatization of the intergovernmental satellite organizations 
(IGOs) that dominate international satellite communications and 
to promote a robustly competitive satellite communications 
marketplace. The bill eliminates the provision of commercial 
satellite communications by intergovernmental organizations. 
The bill also ensures that the privatized entities be 
independent of the IGO ``signatories.'' By privatizing INTELSAT 
and Inmarsat as outlined in H.R. 1872, the unfair advantages 
now enjoyed by these organizations would be eliminated, in 
favor of a level playing field for all competitors. This in 
turn would bring consumers lower prices, higher service 
quality, improved efficiency, innovative new products, and more 
choice.
    The bill promotes the privatization of INTELSAT and 
Inmarsat by using the incentive of access to the U.S. 
marketplace if the IGOs privatize in an expeditious and pro-
competitive manner. The bill is also designed to eliminate any 
unfair advantages of IGOs or their spin-offs or successors over 
their competitors gained through their intergovernmental 
status. Pro-competitive privatizations are sought by requiring 
the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) to determine that 
the IGOs and their privatized ``successor'' or ``separated'' 
follow-ons have been privatized in a manner that would not harm 
competition in the U.S., prior to authorizing the provision of 
advanced services in the U.S. market.
    The primary incentive in the bill for INTELSAT and Inmarsat 
to privatize is to limit their access to the U.S. market if 
they do not privatize in a pro-competitive manner by a date 
certain. In order to provide these organizations with a 
reasonable transition period in which to accomplish a full 
privatization, the bill provides INTELSAT until January 1, 
2002, and Inmarsat until January 1, 2001. If privatization does 
not occur by the dates provided, the bill requires the FCC to 
limit, deny, or revoke authority for the provision of ``non-
core services'' to the U.S. market. Furthermore, the bill 
prohibits separated entities from being authorized to provide 
services in the United States if they are not structured in a 
pro-competitive manner.
    Another key part of the bill is the possibility of 
restrictions on additional services during the pendency of 
privatization. This lever provides that INTELSAT and Inmarsat 
cannot provide additional services under new contracts unless 
the FCC annually determines that: (1) substantial and material 
progress is being made towards privatization; and (2) INTELSAT 
and Inmarsat are not hindering competitors' access to foreign 
markets.
    The bill explicitly eliminates COMSAT's monopoly for the 
provision of IGO services in the United States by permitting 
other service providers direct access to the IGOs' satellites. 
The bill also allows COMSAT's customers a one-time opportunity 
to renegotiate their contracts with the previous monopoly 
provider after January 1, 2000.
    Lastly, the bill includes a number of additional 
deregulatory measures designed to ensure that all U.S. 
satellite service providers can compete as efficiently as 
possible within the U.S. satellite marketplace. The bill also 
prohibits the FCC from auctioning orbital slots or spectrum 
assignments for global satellite systems and requires the 
Administration to oppose such spectrum auctions in 
international fora.

Legislative History

    H.R. 1872 was introduced in the House by Representatives 
Bliley and Markey on June 12, 1997. The bill was referred 
solely to the Committee on Commerce.
    The Subcommittee on Telecommunications, Trade, and Consumer 
Protection held a legislative hearing on H.R. 1872 on September 
30, 1997. The Subcommittee heard testimony from representatives 
of Federal agencies and telecommunications companies. On March 
4 and March 18, 1998, the Subcommittee met in open markup 
session to consider H.R. 1872. On March 18, 1998, the 
Subcommittee approved the bill, amended, for Full Committee 
consideration by a voice vote.
    On March 25, 1998, the Full Committee met in open markup 
session to consider H.R. 1872 and ordered the bill reported to 
the House, amended, by a voice vote, a quorum being present. 
The Committee reported H.R. 1872 to the House on April 27, 1998 
(H. Rpt. 105-494).
    The Committee on Rules met on May 5, 1998, and granted a 
rule providing for the consideration of H.R. 1872. The rule was 
filed in the House as H. Res. 419. On May 6, 1998, the House 
passed H. Res. 419 by a voice vote.
    The House considered H.R. 1872, on May 6, 1998, and passed 
the bill, amended, by a roll call vote of 403 yeas to 16 nays, 
with 2 voting present. H.R. 1872 was received in the Senate on 
May 7, 1998, read twice, and referred to the Senate Committee 
on Commerce, Science, and Transportation.
    No further action was taken on H.R. 1872 in the 105th 
Congress, however, provisions of H.R. 1872 relating to 
privileges and immunities afforded intergovernmental 
organizations were incorporated, as amended, into H.R. 4353 and 
S. 2375. For the legislative history of those bills, see the 
discussion of the International Anti-Bribery and Fair 
Competition Act of 1998 (Public Law 105-366) in the 
Subcommittee on Finance and Hazardous Materials section.

                         tea 21 restoration act

                               (H.R. 3978)

    To restore provisions agreed to by the conferees to H.R. 
2400, entitled the ``Transportation Equity Act for the 21st 
Century'', but not included in the conference report to H.R. 
2400, and for other purposes.

Summary

    After the passage of the Transportation Equity Act for the 
21st Century (TEA 21, Public Law 105-178), a number of 
technical errors were discovered in the text, including an 
error in the section addressing the ability of the National 
Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) to lobby State 
legislators. The conference report inadvertently left out 
language limiting the lobbying restriction to NHTSA, therefore 
applying the restriction to the entire Department of 
Transportation. Section 12 of H.R. 3978 restores the language 
to that intended by the conferees.

Legislative History

    H.R. 3978 was introduced by Mr. Shuster and three 
cosponsors on June 3, 1998. On the same day, by unanimous 
consent, the House proceeded to the immediate consideration of 
H.R. 3978 and passed the bill. H.R. 3978 was received in the 
Senate on June 4, 1998. On June 11, 1998, H.R. 3978 was read 
for the first time and placed on the Senate Calendar. On June 
12, 1998, it was read a second time and placed on the Senate 
calendar.
    No further action was taken by the Senate on H.R. 3978 in 
the 105th Congress. However, legislative language identical to 
the text of H.R. 3978 was included in H.R. 2676 and enacted 
into law as Title IX of Public Law 105-206. For the legislative 
history of that bill, see the discussion of the Internal 
Revenue Service Restructuring and Reform Act of 1998 in this 
section.

  department of justice appropriations authorization act, fiscal years 
                          1999, 2000, and 2001

                               (H.R. 3303)

    To authorize appropriations for the Department of Justice 
for fiscal years 1999, 2000, and 2001; to authorize 
appropriations for fiscal years 1999 and 2000 to carry out 
certain programs administered by the Department of Justice; to 
amend title 28, United States Code, with respect to the use of 
funds available to the Department of Justice; and for other 
purposes.

Summary

    The purpose of H.R. 3303 is to provide authorizations for 
the Department of Justice and to extend authorizations for 
various programs and other law enforcement activities. While 
the bill is primarily within the jurisdiction of the Committee 
on the Judiciary, section 204 implements a number of changes to 
the Communications Assistance for Law Enforcement Act (CALEA). 
These changes extend the period during which telecommunications 
companies must be in compliance with certain provisions of 
CALEA and extend the date by which the Department of Justice is 
authorized to provide reimbursement to telecommunications 
companies for purchasing certain new equipment necessary to 
comply with CALEA.

Legislative History

    H.R. 3303 was introduced in the House by Representatives 
Hyde and Conyers on March 3, 1998. The bill was referred solely 
to the Committee on the Judiciary.
    The Committee on the Judiciary met to consider H.R. 3303 on 
April 29, 1998, and ordered the bill reported to the House, 
amended, by a voice vote. On May 12, 1998, the Committee on the 
Judiciary reported H.R. 3303 to the House (H. Rpt. 105-526).
    The House considered H.R. 3303 under Suspension of the 
Rules on June 22, 1998. During the debate, the Chairman of the 
Committee on Commerce inserted a statement in the Congressional 
Record stating that while portions of H.R. 3303 were within the 
jurisdiction of the Commerce Committee, the Committee would 
waive jurisdiction in order to expedite consideration of the 
bill. H.R. 3303 passed the House by a voice vote on June 22, 
1998.
    On June 23, 1998, H.R. 3303 was received in the Senate, 
read twice, and referred to the Senate Committee on the 
Judiciary. The Senate Committee on the Judiciary met on 
September 17, 1998, to consider H.R. 3303 and ordered the bill 
reported to the Senate, amended. On September 17, 1998, the 
Senate Committee on the Judiciary reported H.R. 3303 to the 
Senate (No Written Report).
    No further action was taken by the Senate on H.R. 3303 in 
the 105th Congress.

                        internet tax freedom act

          (H.R. 4105, H.R. 3849, H.R. 3529, H.R. 1054, S. 442)

    To establish a national policy against State and local 
interference with interstate commerce on the Internet, to 
exercise congressional jurisdiction over interstate commerce by 
establishing a moratorium on the imposition of exactions that 
would interfere with the free flow of commerce via the 
Internet, to establish a national policy against federal and 
state regulation of Internet access and online services, and 
for other purposes.

Summary

    H.R. 4105, as passed by the House, incorporates provisions 
of H.R. 3849 (as reported by the Committee on Commerce), H.R. 
3529 (as reported by the Committee on the Judiciary), and H.R. 
1054 (the original Internet Tax Freedom Act). The purpose of 
H.R. 4105 is to prohibit, for a period of three years, a State 
or political subdivision thereof from imposing, assessing, or 
collecting taxes on Internet access, bit taxes, or multiple or 
discriminatory taxes on electronic commerce. Eight States were 
granted an exception from the general three-year moratorium if 
they enacted a law stating their intention to be excepted. 
During the course of the moratorium, a 31-member advisory 
commission shall be assembled to conduct a thorough study of 
State and local taxation of transactions using the Internet and 
Internet access, and other comparable intrastate and interstate 
sales activities. The commission is required to report its 
findings to Congress within 2 years.
    H.R. 4105 addresses a number of other matters. First, it 
prohibits the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) and State 
public utility commissions from regulating the prices or 
charges paid by subscribers for Internet access or online 
services. The bill also prohibits the FCC from collecting 
Federal regulatory fees from providers of Internet access or 
online services. Second, the bill requires the Secretary of 
Commerce to study barriers imposed in foreign markets on 
electronic commerce and report to Congress its findings. 
Finally, H.R. 4105 declares that the Internet should be free of 
foreign tariffs, trade barriers, and other restrictions.

Legislative History

H.R. 1054

    H.R. 1054 was introduced in the House on March 13, 1997, by 
Representatives Cox and White. The bill was referred to the 
Committee on Commerce, and in addition to the Committee on the 
Judiciary. Within the Committee on Commerce, the bill was 
referred to the Subcommittee on Telecommunications, Trade, and 
Consumer Protection.
    On July 11, 1997, the Subcommittee on Telecommunications, 
Trade, and Consumer Protection held a legislative hearing on 
H.R. 1054. Witnesses at the hearing included Members of 
Congress and representatives of private industry. On October 9, 
1997, the Subcommittee on Telecommunications, Trade, and 
Consumer Protection met in open markup session and approved 
H.R. 1054 for Full Committee consideration, amended, by a voice 
vote. No further action was taken on H.R. 1054.

H.R. 3849

    On May 12, 1998, a new Internet Tax Freedom Act was 
introduced in the House by Representatives Cox and White as 
H.R. 3849. The bill was referred to the Committee on Commerce, 
and in addition to the Committee on the Judiciary, the 
Committee on Ways and Means, and the Committee on Rules.
    On May 14, 1998, the Full Committee met in open markup 
session and considered H.R. 3849 in lieu of H.R. 1054, which 
had been previously approved by the Subcommittee on 
Telecommunications, Trade, and Consumer Protection. The Full 
Committee ordered H.R. 3849 reported to the House, amended, by 
a roll call vote of 41 yeas and 0 nays. The Committee on 
Commerce reported H.R. 3849 to the House on June 5, 1998 (H. 
Rpt. 105-570, Part 1). On June 5, 1998, the referral of H.R. 
3849 to the Committee on the Judiciary, the Committee on Ways 
and Means, and the Committee on Rules was extended for a period 
ending not later than June 19, 1998.
    On June 17, 1998, the Committee on the Judiciary considered 
H.R. 3849 and ordered the bill reported to the House, amended, 
by a voice vote. On June 19, 1998, the Committee on the 
Judiciary reported H.R. 3849 to the House (H. Rpt. 105-570, 
Part 2). On June 19, 1998, the referral of H.R. 3849 to the 
Committee on Ways and Means and the Committee on Rules was 
extended for a period ending not later than June 26, 1998. On 
June 25, 1998, the Committee on Ways and Means and the 
Committee on Rules were discharged from further consideration 
of H.R. 3849. No further action was taken on H.R. 3849.

H.R. 3529

    On March 23, 1998, Mr. Chabot introduced H.R. 3529, a 
similar bill, in the House. The bill was referred to the 
Committee on the Judiciary, and in addition to the Committee on 
Ways and Means and the Committee on Rules.
    On June 17, 1998, the Committee on the Judiciary considered 
H.R. 3529 and ordered the bill reported to the House, amended, 
by a voice vote. On October 10, 1998, the Committee on the 
Judiciary reported H.R. 3529 to the House (H. Rpt. 105-808, 
Part 1). On October 10, 1998, the referral of H.R. 3539 to the 
Committee on Ways and Means and the Committee on Rules was 
extended for a period ending not later than October 10, 1998. 
On October 10, 1998, the Committee on Ways and Means and the 
Committee on Rules were discharged from further consideration 
of H.R. 3529. No further action was taken on H.R. 3529.

H.R. 4105

    On June 22, 1998, H.R. 4105 was introduced in the House by 
Mr. Cox. As introduced, H.R. 4105 represented a consensus bill 
which incorporated provisions of H.R. 3849 (as reported by the 
Committee on Commerce), H.R. 3529 (as reported by the Committee 
on the Judiciary), and H.R. 1054 (the original Internet Tax 
Freedom Act). H.R. 4105 was referred to the Committee on the 
Judiciary, and in addition to the Committee on Commerce and the 
Committee on Ways and Means.
    On June 23, 1998, the House considered H.R. 4105 under 
Suspension of the Rules, thereby discharging the three 
Committees of referral from further consideration of the bill. 
H.R. 4105 passed the House by a voice vote.
    On June 24, 1998, H.R. 4105 was received in the Senate, 
read twice, and placed on the Senate Calendar. No further 
action was taken on H.R. 4105.

S. 442

    S. 442, the Senate companion bill, was introduced in the 
Senate on March 13, 1997, by Senators Wyden and Kerry. The bill 
was referred solely to the Senate Committee on Commerce, 
Science, and Transportation.
    The Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and 
Transportation considered S. 442 on June 26, 1997 and November 
4, 1997, and on November 4, 1997, ordered S. 442 reported to 
the Senate, amended. The Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, 
and Transportation reported S. 442 to the Senate on May 5, 1998 
(S. Rpt. 105-184).
    On July 21, 1998, by unanimous consent, S. 442 was referred 
to the Senate Committee on Finance for a period not to exceed 
beyond July 30, 1998. On July 28, 1998, the Senate Committee on 
Finance considered S. 442 and ordered the bill reported to the 
Senate, amended. The Senate Committee on Finance reported S. 
442 to the Senate on July 30, 1998 (S. Rpt 105-276.) On August 
5, 1998, a star print version of S. Rpt. 105-276 was ordered.
    The Senate considered S. 442 on October 1, October 2, 
October 6, October 7, and October 8, 1998. On October 8, 1998, 
the Senate passed S. 442 by a roll call vote of 96 yeas to 2 
nays. As passed by the Senate, S. 442 included major provisions 
of H.R. 4105.
    S. 442 was received in the House on October 8, 1998, and 
held at the desk. On October 21, 1998, S. 442 was referred to 
the Committee on the Judiciary, and in addition to the 
Committee on Education and the Workforce, the Committee on 
Commerce, the Committee on Government Reform and Oversight, and 
the Committee on Ways and Means.
    No further action was taken on S. 442. However, the text of 
S. 442, as passed by the Senate, and with a modification to one 
section, was incorporated into H.R. 4328, the Omnibus 
Consolidated and Emergency Supplemental Appropriations Act, 
1999, and enacted into law as Public Law 105-277. For the 
legislative history of H.R. 4328, see the discussion of the 
Omnibus Consolidated and Emergency Supplemental Appropriations 
Act, 1999 in this section.

                    made in america toll free number

                           (H.R. 563, S. 2631)

    To establish a toll free number in the Department of 
Commerce to assist consumers in determining if products are 
American-made.

Summary

    H.R. 563 provides for the establishment and operation of a 
three-year, toll free number pilot program to assist consumers 
in determining what products are ``Made in America.'' The bill 
provides that all costs of the program be paid with fees 
collected from manufacturers who voluntarily choose to register 
their products under this program.
    The legislation requires the Secretary of Commerce (the 
Secretary) to issue regulations establishing the program, as 
well as procedures for manufacturers to register products that 
are made in America. If there is sufficient interest in 
providing private sector funding, the Secretary is directed to 
enter into a contract for the establishment and operation of 
the program. In defining ``Made in America,'' H.R. 563 relies 
upon the definitions used by the Federal Trade Commission for 
unqualified ``Made in America'' or ``Made in U.S.A.'' claims.

Legislative History

    H.R. 563 was introduced in the House by Mr. Traficant on 
February 4, 1998, and referred solely to the Committee on 
Commerce. It is substantially similar to legislation passed by 
the House in the 103rd and 104th Congresses, H.R. 3342 and H.R. 
447, respectively.
    In the 104th Congress, the Subcommittee on Commerce, Trade, 
and Hazardous Materials held a hearing on virtually identical 
legislation, H.R. 447, a bill to establish a toll-free number 
in the Department of Commerce to assist consumers in 
determining if products are American-made, on July 11, 1996. 
The Subcommittee received testimony from Representative 
Traficant who testified in favor of the legislation. The 
Committee held no additional hearings during the 105th 
Congress.
    On September 24, 1998, the Full Committee met in open 
markup session and ordered H.R. 563 reported to the House, 
amended, by a voice vote, a quorum being present. On October 1, 
1998, the Committee on Commerce reported H.R. 563 to the House 
(H. Rpt. 105-759).
    The House considered H.R. 563 under Suspension of the Rules 
on October 5, 1998, and passed the bill by a voice vote. On 
October 6, 1998, H.R. 563 was received in the Senate and held 
at the desk.
    No further action was taken by the Senate on H.R. 563 in 
the 105th Congress.

                       child online protection act

                               (H.R. 3783)

    To amend the Communications Act of 1934 to require persons 
who are engaged in the business of distributing, by means of 
the World Wide Web, material that is harmful to minors, to 
restrict access to such material by minors, and for other 
purposes.

Summary

    The purpose of H.R. 3783 is to protect children from 
obtaining access to pornography on the World Wide Web and to 
ensure that online businesses do not collect personally 
identifiable information from children. Specifically, Title I 
of the bill prohibits a person from making a communication on 
the World Wide Web for commercial purposes available to any 
minor that includes material that is harmful to minors. Persons 
violating this general prohibition may be subject to criminal 
and civil penalties. Title I excludes telecommunications 
carriers, Internet service providers, and other entities not 
involved in the selection or alteration of the content of the 
communication from the general prohibition. Title I also states 
that it is an affirmative defense to prosecution if the 
defendant, in good faith, has restricted access by minors to 
material that is harmful to minors by requiring the use of a 
credit card, debit account, adult access code, adult personal 
identification code, digital certificate, or any other 
reasonable measure that is feasible under available technology. 
In addition, Title I requires providers of interactive computer 
service to notify their customers that parental control 
protections (such as computer hardware, software, and filtering 
services) are commercially available to assist consumers with 
limiting access to material that is harmful to minors. To 
address other matters affecting a minor's access to material 
harmful to minors on the Internet, Title I establishes a 
temporary commission on online child protection. The commission 
will be composed of key industry members and is required to 
study technological solutions that will help reduce access by 
minors to material that is harmful to minors on the Internet. 
These technological solutions may also be used to meet the 
requirements for use as affirmative defenses under the general 
prohibition identified in the title.
    Title II of H.R. 3783 prohibits an operator of a website or 
online service directed to children, or any operator with 
actual knowledge, to collect personal information from a child. 
Under this title, the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) is given 
the authority to adopt regulations regarding the collection of 
certain information from children and to determine when parents 
are required to consent to the disclosure of personal 
information from children. Also, industry is given the 
opportunity to develop self-regulations that would govern the 
collection of personal information from children in lieu of the 
regulations developed by the FTC. With respect to enforcement, 
this title permits the attorney general of each State to bring 
a civil action on behalf of the residents of the State for 
violations of the FTC regulations. Finally, Title II requires 
the FTC to review its regulations not later than five years 
after the effective date of its initial regulations.

Legislative History

    H.R. 3783 was introduced in the House by Mr. Oxley and nine 
cosponsors on April 30, 1998. The bill was referred solely to 
the Committee on Commerce.
    On September 11, 1998, the Subcommittee on 
Telecommunications, Trade, and Consumer Protection held a 
legislative hearing on methods to prevent the distribution of 
material that is harmful to minors over the Internet. At the 
hearing, the Subcommittee considered H.R. 3783, H.R. 774, H.R. 
1180, H.R. 1964, H.R. 3177, H.R. 3442, as well as other 
proposals on ways to restrict a minor's access to material that 
is harmful to minors. The Subcommittee heard testimony from 
Members of Congress, representatives of private industry, 
professors, and a representative from the Federal Bureau of 
Investigation.
    On September 17, 1998, the Subcommittee on 
Telecommunications, Trade, and Consumer Protection met in open 
markup session and approved H.R. 3783 for Full Committee 
consideration, amended, by a voice vote. On September 24, 1998, 
the Full Committee met in open markup session and ordered H.R. 
3783 reported to the House, amended, by a voice vote, a quorum 
being present. The Committee on Commerce reported H.R. 3783 to 
the House on October 5, 1998 (H. Rpt. 105-775).
    On October 7, 1998, the House considered H.R. 3783 under 
Suspension of the Rules, and passed the bill by a voice vote. 
H.R. 3783 was received in the Senate on October 8, 1998, and 
held at the desk.
    No further action was taken on H.R. 3783 in the 105th 
Congress. However, Title I of H.R. 3783 was included in H.R. 
4328, the Omnibus Consolidated and Emergency Supplemental 
Appropriations Act, 1999, as passed by the House and Senate, 
and enacted into law as Public Law 105-277. Also, Title II of 
H.R. 3783 was amended and included in H.R. 4328, the Omnibus 
Consolidated and Emergency Supplemental Appropriations Act, 
1999, as passed by the House and Senate, and enacted into law 
as Public Law 105-277. For the legislative history of H.R. 
4328, see the discussion of the Omnibus Consolidated and 
Emergency Supplemental Appropriations Act, 1999 in this 
section.

   multichannel video competition and consumer protection act of 1998

                               (H.R. 2921)

    To promote the competitive viability of direct-to-home 
satellite television service.

Summary

    The purpose of H.R. 2921 is to promote the competitive 
viability of satellite broadcast services, such as direct 
broadcast satellite (DBS) service and other direct-to-home 
(DTH) satellite services, (e.g., traditional ``C-band'' 
service) to promote competition in the market for multichannel 
video programming distribution.
    The bill has two components. First it stays enforcement of 
the ``differential fee decision'' until December 31, 1999. The 
``differential fee decision'' was the decision by the Librarian 
of Congress on October 27, 1997, to increase the per 
subscriber, per month royalty fee paid by satellite 
broadcasters for the retransmission of superstation and distant 
network signals. Further, the bill clarifies satellite 
broadcasters' legal standing to sue those who pirate satellite 
broadcast signals.

Legislative History

    H.R. 2921 was introduced in the House on November 7, 1997, 
by Mr. Tauzin and two cosponsors. The bill was referred to the 
Committee on Commerce, and in addition to the Committee on the 
Judiciary.
    The Subcommittee on Telecommunications, Trade, and Consumer 
Protection held a hearing on April 1, 1998, on Video 
Competition: Multichannel Programming. The Subcommittee 
received testimony from representatives of the Federal 
Communications Commission, the Register of Copyright, and the 
private sector. The Subcommittee on Telecommunications, Trade, 
and Consumer Protection met in open markup session to consider 
H.R. 2921 on June 17, 1998, and approved the bill for Full 
Committee consideration, amended, by a voice vote.
    The Full Committee met in open markup session to consider 
H.R. 2921 on June 24, 1998, and ordered the bill reported to 
the House, amended, by a voice vote, a quorum being present. 
The Committee on Commerce reported H.R. 2921 to the House on 
July 30, 1998 (H. Rpt. 105-661, Part 1). On July 30, 1998, the 
referral of H.R. 2921 to the Committee on the Judiciary was 
extended for a period ending not later than September 11, 1998.
    The Committee on the Judiciary met to consider H.R. 2921 on 
August 4, 1998, and ordered the bill reported to the House, 
amended, by a voice vote. The Committee on the Judiciary 
reported H.R. 2921 to the House on September 10, 1998 (H. Rpt. 
105-661, Part 2).
    The House considered H.R. 2921 under Suspension of the 
Rules on October 7, 1998, and passed the bill, amended, by a 
voice vote. On October 8, 1998, H.R. 2921 was received in the 
Senate, read twice, and referred to the Senate Committee on the 
Judiciary.
    No further action was taken by the Senate on H.R. 2921 in 
the 105th Congress.

           security and freedom through encryption (safe) act

                               (H.R. 695)

    To amend title 18, United States Code, to affirm the rights 
of United States persons to use and sell encryption and to 
relax export controls on encryption.

Summary

    The purpose of H.R. 695 is to affirm the rights of United 
States persons to use and sell encryption products domestically 
and to relax export controls on encryption products. In 
general, H.R. 695, as reported by the Committee on Commerce, 
makes it lawful for any person to sell encryption products in 
interstate commerce regardless of the encryption algorithm 
selected, key length chosen, or implementation technique or 
medium used. On the other hand, the bill makes it illegal to 
knowingly encrypt incriminating communications or information 
relating to a felony.
    As encryption products become more widespread, the efforts 
of law enforcement to fight crime may be obstructed. 
Consequently, H.R. 695 creates a National Electronic 
Technologies Center (NET Center) that is designed to serve as a 
center for Federal, State, and local law enforcement 
authorities to gather information regarding decryption 
capabilities. H.R. 695 also amends section 17 of the Export 
Administration Act of 1979 by stating that a valid license is 
not required, except pursuant to the Trading with the Enemy Act 
or the International Emergency Economic Powers Act, for the 
export or re-export of encryption hardware and software that is 
generally available and in the public domain.

Legislative History

    H.R. 695 was introduced in the House by Mr. Goodlatte and 
54 cosponsors on February 12, 1997. The bill was referred to 
the Committee on the Judiciary, and in addition to the 
Committee on International Relations.
    The Committee on the Judiciary met on May 14, 1997, to 
consider H.R. 695 and ordered the bill reported to the House, 
amended, by a voice vote. On May 22, 1997, the Committee on the 
Judiciary reported H.R. 695 to the House (H. Rpt. 105-108, Part 
1). On May 22, 1997, the referral of H.R. 695 to the Committee 
on International Relations was extended for a period ending not 
later than July 11, 1997. On June 26, 1997, the referral of 
H.R. 695 to the Committee on International Relations was 
extended for a period ending not later than July 25, 1997. On 
June 26, 1997, H.R. 695 was referred, sequentially, to the 
Committee on Commerce, the Committee on National Security, and 
the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence for a 
period ending not later than September 5, 1997.
    The Committee on International Relations met on July 22, 
1997, to consider H.R. 695, and ordered the bill reported to 
the House, amended, by a voice vote. On July 25, 1997, the 
Committee on International Relations reported H.R. 695 to the 
House (H. Rpt. 105-108, Part 2).
    On July 30, 1997, the referral of H.R. 695 to the House 
Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence was extended for a 
period ending not later than September 12, 1997. On July 31, 
1997, the referral of the bill to the Committee on National 
Security was extended for a period ending not later than 
September 12, 1997. On September 5, 1998, the referral of H.R. 
695 to the Committee on Commerce was extended for a period 
ending not later than September 12, 1998.
    The Committee on National Security met on September 9, 
1997, and ordered H.R. 695 reported to the House, amended, by 
voice vote. On September 12, 1997, the Committee on National 
Security reported H.R. 695 to the House (H. Rpt. 105-108, Part 
3).
    The Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence met in an 
open session on September 11, 1997, and ordered H.R. 695 
reported to the House, amended, by voice vote. On September 11, 
1998, the referral of H.R. 695 to the Permanent Select 
Committee on Intelligence was extended for a period ending not 
later than September 16, 1997. On September 11, 1998, the 
referral of H.R. 695 to the Committee on Commerce was extended 
for a period ending not later than September 26, 1997. On 
September 16, 1997, the Permanent Select Committee on 
Intelligence reported H.R. 695 to the House (H. Rpt. 105-108, 
Part 4).
    The Subcommittee on Telecommunications, Trade, and Consumer 
Protection held a legislative hearing on H.R. 695 on September 
4, 1997. The Subcommittee received testimony from Members of 
Congress, government experts, and representatives of private 
industry.
    On September 24, 1997, the Full Committee on Commerce met 
in open markup session to consider H.R. 695; having agreed to a 
unanimous consent request to discharge the Subcommittee on 
Telecommunications, Trade, and Consumer Protection from further 
consideration and to proceed to the immediate consideration of 
H.R. 695. The Full Committee ordered H.R. 695 reported to the 
House, amended, by a roll call vote of 44 yeas to 6 nays. On 
September 25, 1998, the referral of H.R. 695 to the Committee 
on Commerce was extended for a period ending not later than 
September 29, 1997. On September 29, 1997, the Full Committee 
reported H.R. 695 to the House (H. Rpt. 105-108, Part 5).
    No further action was taken on H.R. 695 in the 105th 
Congress.

          wireless communications and public safety act of 1998

                          (H.R. 3844, S. 2519)

    To promote and enhance public safety through use of 9-1-1 
as the universal emergency assistance number, further 
deployment of wireless 9-1-1 service, support of States in 
upgrading 9-1-1 capabilities and related functions, 
encouragement of construction and operation of seamless, 
ubiquitous and reliable networks for personal wireless 
services, and ensuring access to Federal Government property 
for such networks, and for other purposes.

Summary

    The purpose of H.R. 3844 is to promote and enhance public 
safety through the use of 911 as the universal emergency 
assistance number; further the deployment of wireless 911 
service; support States in upgrading 911 capabilities and 
related functions; encourage construction and operation of 
seamless, ubiquitous and reliable networks for personal 
wireless services; and ensure access to Federal government 
property for such networks. The bill accomplishes this by 
requiring that the Federal Communications Commission designate 
``911'' as the universal emergency telephone number for both 
wireline and wireless telephone calls. The bill also enhances 
the provision of wireless telephone emergency services by 
establishing a fund, administered by the Department of the 
Treasury and allocated in State grants by the Department of 
Transportation, to (1) upgrade the equipment of ``public safety 
answering points'' to enable them to receive number and 
location information with wireless emergency telephone calls 
and (2) fund emergency educational programs.
    The fund would come from both an annual appropriation to 
the Department of Transportation and the profit portion of 
lease fees, credited by Federal agencies, for siting cellular 
antennas and other facilities of personal wireless services 
providers on Federal property. In order to maximize such fund 
resources, and speed the deployment of personal wireless 
services, including wireless 911, the bill provides for a 
streamlined process for Federal property managers to respond to 
a siting request by a personal wireless provider. Finally, to 
encourage the provision of wireless telephone emergency 
services, the bill provides the same degree of protection from 
liability for emergency telephone and other services to 
wireless carriers in each State as provided in that State to a 
wireline carrier.

Legislative History

    H.R. 3844 was introduced in the House by Mr. Tauzin and 13 
cosponsors on May 12, 1998. The bill was referred solely to the 
Committee on Commerce.
    The Subcommittee on Telecommunications, Trade, and Consumer 
Protection held a legislative hearing on H.R. 3844 on June 9, 
1998. The Subcommittee heard testimony from representatives of 
the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, the General 
Services Administration, and private industry.
    On July 22, 1998, the Subcommittee on Telecommunications, 
Trade, and Consumer Protection met in open markup session and 
approved H.R. 3844 for Full Committee consideration, amended, 
by a voice vote. The Full Committee met in open markup session 
on August 5, 1998, and ordered H.R. 3844 reported to the House, 
amended, by a voice vote, a quorum being present.
    On September 17, 1998, the Chairman of the Committee on 
Science sent a letter to the Chairman of the Committee on 
Commerce indicating that the Committee on Science would not 
seek a sequential referral of H.R. 3844. The Chairman of the 
Committee on Commerce replied on September 18, 1998, 
acknowledging the Science Committee's jurisdictional interest. 
On September 28, 1998, the Chairman of the Committee on 
Resources sent a letter to the Chairman of the Committee on 
Commerce indicating that the Committee on Resources would not 
seek a sequential referral of H.R. 3844. The Chairman of the 
Committee on Commerce acknowledged the Committee on Resources' 
jurisdictional interest in H.R. 3844.
    On October 2, 1998, the Committee on Commerce reported H.R. 
3844 to the House (H. Rpt. 105-768, Part 1). On October 2, 
1998, H.R. 3844 was referred, sequentially, to the Committee on 
Transportation and Infrastructure for a period ending not later 
than October 9, 1998. On October 9, 1998, the referral of H.R. 
3844 to the Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure was 
extended for a period ending not later than October 16, 1998. 
On October 16, 1998, the referral of H.R. 3844 to the Committee 
on Transportation and Infrastructure was extended for a period 
ending not later than October 20, 1998. On October 20, 1998, 
the referral of H.R. 3844 to the Committee on Transportation 
and Infrastructure was extended for a period ending not later 
than October 21, 1998.
    No further action was taken on H.R. 3844 in the 105th 
Congress.

              copyright compulsory license improvement act

                              (H.R. 3210)

    To amend title 17, United States Code, to reform the 
copyright law with respect to satellite retransmissions of 
broadcast signals, and for other purposes.

Summary

    H.R. 3210 rewrites Federal copyright law to effectively 
provide satellite companies with a compulsory license to permit 
the retransmission of local television broadcast station 
signals in the local television market of such station subject 
to certain conditions. The bill requires satellite carriers 
providing direct-to-home service of a television broadcast 
station to subscribers located within the local market of such 
station to carry all such stations located within that local 
market, so-called ``must-carry requirements.'' The bill also 
directs the Federal Communications Commission to establish 
regulations that apply network nonduplication protection, 
syndicated exclusivity protection, and sports blackout 
protection to the retransmission of broadcast signals by 
satellite carriers to subscribers for private home viewing.

Legislative History

    H.R. 3210 was introduced in the House by Mr. Coble on 
February 12, 1998. The bill was referred to the Committee on 
the Judiciary, and in addition to the Committee on Commerce.
    On March 18, 1998, the Committee on the Judiciary met in 
open markup session and ordered H.R. 3210 reported to the 
House, amended, by a voice vote.
    The Subcommittee on Telecommunications, Trade, and Consumer 
Protection held a legislative hearing on H.R. 3210 on April 1, 
1998. Testimony was received from representatives of the 
Federal Communications Commission and private industry.
    No further action was taken on H.R. 3210 in the 105th 
Congress.

         slamming prevention and consumer protection act of 1997

                               (H.R. 3050)

    To establish procedures and remedies for the prevention of 
fraudulent and deceptive practices in the solicitation of 
telephone service subscribers, and for other purposes.

Summary

    H.R. 3050 requires both the Federal Communications 
Commission (FCC) and the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) to 
reduce the practice of ``slamming,'' the unauthorized switch of 
a consumer's telephone carrier of choice. In particular, the 
bill directs the FTC to regulate the Primary Interexchange 
Carrier (PIC) verifications, and directs the FCC to prohibit 
the use of so-called ``negative options,'' whereby a consumer's 
PIC may be changed merely because the consumer fails to respond 
to an advertisement or solicitation. The bill also requires 
slamming carriers to refund to slammed subscribers, or 
altogether discharge them from liability for, charges imposed 
during the three-month period following an unauthorized PIC 
change. The bill reserves the rights of States to impose and 
enforce their own methods to reduce the practice of slamming.

Legislative History

    H.R. 3050 was introduced in the House by Mr. Dingell on 
November 13, 1997. The bill was referred solely to the 
Committee on Commerce.
    The Subcommittee on Telecommunications, Trade, and Consumer 
Protection held a legislative hearing on June 23, 1998. The 
Subcommittee received testimony from Members of Congress, 
Federal regulators, and representatives of industry trade 
groups, telecommunications companies, and consumer groups.
    On August 6, 1998, the Subcommittee on Telecommunications, 
Trade, and Consumer Protection met in open markup session and 
approved H.R. 3888, amended, for Full Committee consideration, 
in lieu of H.R. 3050.
    No further action occurred on H.R. 3050 in the 105th 
Congress. For the legislative history of H.R. 3888, see the 
discussion of the Telecommunications Competition and Consumer 
Protection Act of 1998 in this section.

                        data privacy act of 1997

                               (H.R. 2368)

    To promote the privacy of interactive computer service 
users through self-regulation by the providers of such 
services, and for other purposes.

Summary

    H.R. 2368 builds on industry efforts to enhance the privacy 
of users of Internet services and other interactive computer 
services. The bill relies on voluntary, industry-developed 
privacy guidelines, and establishes certain privacy guidelines. 
The bill provides for the establishment of a computer 
interactive services industry working group which is intended 
to establish voluntary guidelines: (1) limiting the collection 
and use, for commercial marketing, of personal information 
obtained from individuals via electronic mediums; (2) relating 
to the distribution of unsolicited commercial electronic mail; 
and (3) providing incentives for following such guidelines.
    H.R. 2368 prohibits: (1) the commercial marketing use of 
certain government information regarding an individual that is 
obtained through the use of any interactive computer service 
without the individual's prior consent; and (2) the display of 
any individual's Social Security number through the use of any 
interactive computer service, with specified exceptions. 
Further the bill prohibits the commercial marketing use of any 
personal health and medical information obtained through an 
interactive computer service unless the person has obtained 
prior consent of the individual to whom such information 
relates for such use or such use is otherwise authorized by 
law.

Legislative History

    H.R. 2368 was introduced in the House by Representatives 
Tauzin and Gillmor on July 31, 1997. The bill was referred 
solely to the Committee on Commerce.
    The Subcommittee on Telecommunications, Trade, and Consumer 
Protection held an oversight hearing on Electronic Commerce: 
Privacy in Cyberspace on July 21, 1998. The hearing also 
focused on H.R. 2368. The Subcommittee received testimony from 
the Chairman and three of the Commissioners of the Federal 
Trade Commission (FTC), a privacy advocate, and representatives 
of industry trade groups and a consumer group.
    No further action was taken on H.R. 2368 in the 105th 
Congress.

                    safe schools internet act of 1998

                              (H.R. 3177)

    To require the installation of a system for filtering or 
blocking matter on the Internet on computers in schools and 
libraries with Internet access, and for other purposes.

Summary

    H.R. 3177 amends the Communications Act of 1934, as 
amended, and requires elementary and secondary schools to 
certify that they have filtering software in place that will 
block access to inappropriate material prior to the school 
receiving universal service assistance. Libraries are required 
to make a similar certification. The bill also provides that 
the local school, school board, or library make the 
determination regarding what matter is inappropriate for 
minors.

Legislative History

    H.R. 3177 was introduced in the House on February 11, 1998 
by Mr. Franks of New Jersey. The bill was referred solely to 
the Committee on Commerce.
    On September 11, 1998, the Subcommittee on 
Telecommunications, Trade, and Consumer Protection held a 
legislative hearing on Legislative Proposals to Protect 
Children from Inappropriate Materials on the Internet. At the 
hearing, the Subcommittee considered H.R. 3177, along with H.R. 
3783, H.R. 774, H.R. 1964, H.R. 3442, and H.R. 1180. Witnesses 
at the hearing included Members of Congress, representatives of 
private industry, professors, and a representative from the 
Federal Bureau of Investigation.
    On September 17, 1998, the Subcommittee on 
Telecommunications, Trade, and Consumer Protection met in open 
markup session and approved H.R. 3783, amended, for Full 
Committee consideration, in lieu of H.R. 3177.
    No further action was taken on H.R. 3177 in the 105th 
Congress. For the legislative history of H.R. 3783, see the 
discussion of the Child Online Protection Act in this section.

               family-friendly internet access act of 1997

                               (H.R. 1180)

    To amend the Communications Act of 1934 to require Internet 
access providers to provide screening software to permit 
parents to control Internet access by their children.

Summary

    H.R. 1180 amends section 230 of the Communications Act of 
1934, as amended, to require Internet access providers to offer 
customers screening software that is designed to permit a 
customer to limit access to material that is unsuitable for 
children. The software must be offered to the customer either 
at no charge or for a fee that does not exceed the cost of the 
software.

Legislative History

    On March 20, 1997, Mr. McDade introduced H.R. 1180 in the 
House. The bill was referred solely to the Committee on 
Commerce.
    On September 11, 1998, the Subcommittee on 
Telecommunications, Trade, and Consumer Protection held a 
legislative hearing on Legislative Proposals to Protect 
Children from Inappropriate Materials on the Internet. At the 
hearing, the Subcommittee considered H.R. 1180, along with H.R. 
3783, H.R. 774, H.R. 1964, H.R. 3177, and H.R. 3442. Witnesses 
at the hearing included Members of Congress, representatives of 
private industry, professors, and a representative from the 
Federal Bureau of Investigation.
    On September 17, 1998, the Subcommittee on 
Telecommunications, Trade, and Consumer Protection met in open 
markup session and approved H.R. 3783, amended, for Full 
Committee consideration, in lieu of H.R. 1180.
    No further action was taken on H.R. 1180 in the 105th 
Congress. However, portions of the bill, as amended, were 
included in H.R. 3783, the Child Online Protection Act, as 
passed by the House. Portions of H.R. 1180, as amended, were 
also included in H.R. 4328, the Omnibus Consolidated and 
Emergency Supplemental Appropriations Act, 1999, as passed by 
the House and Senate, and enacted into law as Public Law 105-
277. For the legislative history of H.R. 3783, see the 
discussion of the Child Online Protection Act in this section. 
For the legislative history of H.R. 4328, see the discussion of 
the Omnibus Consolidated and Emergency Supplemental 
Appropriations Act, 1999 in this section.

            internet freedom and child protection act of 1997

                               (H.R. 774)

    To amend the Communications Act of 1934 to restore freedom 
of speech to the Internet and to protect children from 
unsuitable online material.

Summary

    H.R. 774 amends section 223 of the Communications Act of 
1934, as amended, to require Internet access providers to offer 
each customer screening software that is designed to permit a 
customer to limit access to material that is unsuitable for 
children. The software must be offered to the customer either 
for a fee or at no charge.

Legislative History

    On February 13, 1997, Ms. Lofgren introduced H.R. 774 in 
the House. The bill was referred solely to the Committee on 
Commerce.
    On September 11, 1998, the Subcommittee on 
Telecommunications, Trade, and Consumer Protection held a 
legislative hearing on Legislative Proposals to Protect 
Children from Inappropriate Materials on the Internet. At the 
hearing, the Subcommittee considered H.R. 774, along with H.R. 
3783, H.R. 1964, H.R. 1180, H.R. 3177 and H.R. 3442. Witnesses 
at the hearing included Members of Congress, representatives of 
private industry, professors, and a representative from the 
Federal Bureau of Investigation.
    On September 17, 1998, the Subcommittee on 
Telecommunications, Trade, and Consumer Protection met in open 
markup session and approved H.R. 3783, amended, for Full 
Committee consideration, in lieu of H.R. 774.
    No further action was taken on H.R. 774 in the 105th 
Congress. However, portions of the bill, as amended, were 
included in H.R. 3783, the Child Online Protection Act, as 
passed by the House. Portions of H.R. 774, as amended, were 
also included in H.R. 4328, the Omnibus Consolidated and 
Emergency Supplemental Appropriations Act, 1999, as passed by 
the House and Senate, and enacted into law as Public Law 105-
277. For the legislative history of H.R. 3783, see the 
discussion of the Child Online Protection Act in this section. 
For the legislative history of H.R. 4328, see the discussion of 
the Omnibus Consolidated and Emergency Supplemental 
Appropriations Act, 1999 in this section.

             e-rate policy and child protection act of 1998

                               (H.R. 3442)

    To amend the Communications Act of 1934 to require schools 
and libraries that receive universal service support for 
discounted telecommunications services to establish policies 
governing access to material that is inappropriate for 
children.

Summary

    H.R. 3442 amends section 254 of the Communications Act of 
1934, as amended (the Act), to require an elementary or 
secondary school or library that obtains preferential rates 
under the Act to establish a policy with respect to access to 
material that is inappropriate for children. H.R. 3442 also 
provides that after January 1, 1999, an elementary or secondary 
school or library may not continue to be eligible to obtain 
services or preferential rates under the Act unless such school 
or library has filed with the Federal Communications Commission 
a statement describing its policy to restrict access.

Legislative History

    On March 11, 1998, Representatives Markey and Manton 
introduced H.R. 3442 in the House. The bill was referred solely 
to the Committee on Commerce.
    On September 11, 1998, the Subcommittee on 
Telecommunications, Trade, and Consumer Protection held a 
legislative hearing on Legislative Proposals to Protect 
Children from Inappropriate Materials on the Internet. At the 
hearing, the Subcommittee considered H.R. 3442, along with H.R. 
3783, H.R. 774, H.R. 1964, H.R. 3177, and H.R. 1180. Witnesses 
at the hearing included Members of Congress, representatives of 
private industry, professors, and a representative from the 
Federal Bureau of Investigation.
    On September 17, 1998, the Subcommittee on 
Telecommunications, Trade, and Consumer Protection met in open 
markup session and approved H.R. 3783, amended, for Full 
Committee consideration, in lieu of H.R. 3442.
    No further action was taken on H.R. 3422 in the 105th 
Congress. For the legislative history of H.R. 3783, see the 
discussion of the Child Online Protection Act in this section.

           communications privacy and consumer empowerment act

                               (H.R. 1964)

    To protect consumer privacy, empower parents, enhance the 
telecommunications infrastructure for efficient electronic 
commerce, and safeguard data security.

Summary

    H.R. 1964 addresses a number of communications issues 
involving consumer privacy, online pornography, 
telecommunications infrastructure, and data security. Title I 
of the bill requires the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) and 
Federal Communications Commission (FCC) to adopt regulations 
that will prevent the unauthorized collection and disclosure of 
personal information when such information is gathered through 
the use of telecommunications facilities and services. In 
addition, both the FTC and FCC are required to make legislative 
recommendations to Congress, if any, on ways to protect the 
privacy rights of consumers. Title I of the bill also requires 
Internet access providers to offer their customers screening 
software that is designed to permit the customer to limit 
access to material that is inappropriate for children. In 
addition, Title I extends the current scanner equipment 
manufacturing prohibitions contained in the Communications Act 
of 1934 to digital mobile radio services.
    Title II of H.R. 1964 amends the Communications Act of 1934 
to allow information service providers to interconnect their 
facilities with the facilities of incumbent local exchange 
carriers and the information service provider would be entitled 
to certain rights for purposes of negotiation, mediation, 
arbitration, and approval of interconnection agreements. Title 
II also requires the FCC to consider the needs of information 
service providers when it considers adopting procedures 
regarding network planning and interconnectivity. Finally, 
Title II requires the National Telecommunications and 
Information Administration to study network reliability and 
data security issues and also prohibits the Federal and State 
governments from regulating the sale of encryption products.

Legislative History

    On June 19, 1997, Mr. Markey introduced H.R. 1964 in the 
House. The bill was referred solely to the Committee on 
Commerce.
    On September 11, 1998, the Subcommittee on 
Telecommunications, Trade, and Consumer Protection held a 
legislative hearing on Legislative Proposals to Protect 
Children from Inappropriate Materials on the Internet. At the 
hearing, the Subcommittee considered H.R. 1964, along with H.R. 
3783, H.R. 774, H.R. 1180, H.R. 3177, and H.R. 3442. Witnesses 
at the hearing included Members of Congress, representatives of 
private industry, professors, and a representative from the 
Federal Bureau of Investigation.
    On September 17, 1998, the Subcommittee on 
Telecommunications, Trade, and Consumer Protection met in open 
markup session and approved H.R. 3783, amended, for Full 
Committee consideration, in lieu of H.R. 1964.
    No further action was taken on H.R. 1964 in the 105th 
Congress. However, portions of the bill, as amended, were 
included in H.R. 3783, the Child Online Protection Act, as 
passed by the House. Portions of H.R. 1964, as amended, were 
also included in H.R. 4328, the Omnibus Consolidated and 
Emergency Supplemental Appropriations Act, 1999, as passed by 
the House and Senate, and enacted into law as Public Law 105-
277. For the legislative history of H.R. 3783, see the 
discussion of the Child Online Protection Act in this section. 
For the legislative history of H.R. 4328, see the discussion of 
the Omnibus Consolidated and Emergency Supplemental 
Appropriations Act, 1999 in this section.

                 public broadcasting reform act of 1998

                               (H.R. 4067)

    To establish the Commission for the Future of Public 
Broadcasting and authorize appropriations for the Corporation 
for Public Broadcasting, and for other purposes.

Summary

    H.R. 4067 establishes a commission to conduct a study to 
identify and analyze various options for: (1) providing 
financial support to public broadcast stations for the 
provision of public telecommunications services, the 
utilization of new technologies, and converting such stations 
to such new technologies; (2) providing a funding mechanism for 
the Corporation for Public Broadcasting (CPB) that replaces 
Federal appropriations; (3) reducing Federal spending for 
public broadcasting; (4) establishing a fee for exemption from 
certain public interest broadcasting requirements; and (5) 
carrying out the goals of public broadcasting.
    The bill places limitations on the underwriting practices 
for public broadcasting programming and provides incentives to 
encourage the consideration of public broadcasting stations in 
markets where there is more than one. The bill also 
reauthorizes CPB and the Public Telecommunications Facilities 
Program within the National Telecommunications and Information 
Administration of the Department of Commerce, and provides new 
authorization for conversion funds for the transition from 
analog to digital transmission.

Legislative History

    H.R. 4067 was introduced in the House by Representatives 
Tauzin and Markey on June 16, 1998. The bill was referred 
solely to the Committee on Commerce.
    On October 5, 1998, the Subcommittee on Telecommunications, 
Trade, and Consumer Protection held a legislative hearing on 
H.R. 4067. The hearing also focused on public broadcasting 
issues in general, including the CPB. The purpose of the 
hearing was to hear the public broadcasting community's 
perspective on legislative efforts to reauthorize the CPB and 
provide funding for the transition from analog to digital 
television transmission. Testimony was received from 
representatives of the public broadcasting community.

                 Oversight or Investigative Activities

         cellular privacy: ``is anyone listening? you betcha!''

    On February 5, 1997, the Subcommittee on 
Telecommunications, Trade, and Consumer Protection held an 
oversight hearing entitled ``Cellular Privacy: Is Anyone 
Listening? You Betcha!.'' Testimony was received from 
representatives of the Federal Communications Commission, law 
enforcement officials, industry trade groups, an equipment 
provider, and a privacy advocate. The purpose of the hearing 
was to examine current laws affording privacy protections for 
cellular and other wireless telephone users and to expose any 
weaknesses with the law. The hearing also examined barriers 
that prevent law enforcement officials from effectively 
enforcing privacy laws.

                       spectrum management policy

    On February 12, 1997, and September 18, 1998, the 
Subcommittee on Telecommunications, Trade, and Consumer 
Protection held oversight hearings on the use of the Federal 
electromagnetic spectrum and the Federal Communications 
Commission's (FCC's) spectrum allocation policy. Testimony on 
February 12, 1997, was received from the Chairman of the FCC, a 
Department of Commerce representative, representatives of 
telecommunications companies, and a public safety official from 
a local police department. Testimony on September 18, 1998, was 
received from representatives of the FCC, a private 
telecommunications company, and wireless telecommunications 
companies. The purpose of the hearings was to determine: (1) 
whether the spectrum was being allocated properly and if the 
FCC effectively conducted its allocation process; and (2) the 
impact of the FCC's decisions on private telecommunications 
companies.

                          wto telecom agreement

    On March 19, 1997, the Subcommittee on Telecommunications, 
Trade, and Consumer Protection held an oversight hearing on the 
WTO Telecom Agreement: Results and Next Steps. Witnesses 
included the United States Trade Representative and the 
Chairman of the Federal Communications Commission, as well as 
telecommunications industry representatives. The hearing 
provided Members of the Subcommittee with information on the 
nature of the World Trade Organization's Basic 
Telecommunications Agreement and the implementation of that 
agreement.

                        product liability reform

    The Subcommittee on Telecommunications, Trade, and Consumer 
Protection held two oversight hearings on product liability 
reform. On April 8, 1997, the Subcommittee held an oversight 
hearing on product liability and whether our legal system is 
jeopardizing consumers' access to life-saving products. 
Testimony was received from injured persons with medical 
implants relying on biomaterials supplies, an author of a study 
on biomaterials supplies availability, a representative of a 
medical device manufacturer, and patient advocates.
    On April 30, 1997, the Subcommittee held an oversight 
hearing on product liability reform and how the legal fee 
structure affects consumer compensation. Testimony was received 
from consumer advocates, law professors, consumer lawyers, a 
consumer class action victim, and representatives of the 
American Bar Association.

   reauthorization of the national telecommunications and information 
                             administration

    On April 24, 1997, the Subcommittee on Telecommunications, 
Trade, and Consumer Protection held an oversight hearing on the 
National Telecommunications and Information Administration 
(NTIA) of the Department of Commerce. Testimony was received 
from the head of NTIA, an academic expert, grant recipients, 
and private parties competing against grant recipients. The 
purpose of the hearing was to consider issues relevant to 
legislative efforts to reauthorize NTIA.

                  air bags, car seats, and child safety

    On April 28, 1997, the Subcommittee on Telecommunications, 
Trade, and Consumer Protection held an oversight hearing on Air 
Bags, Car Seats, and Child Safety. The hearing was intended to 
educate Members and the public about the potential for injury 
to children and adults from air bags and improperly installed 
child safety seats. The Subcommittee received testimony from 
representatives of the Administration, domestic and 
international automobile manufacturers, automobile dealers, and 
consumer safety organizations.

         the new tv ratings system: how is it playing in peoria?

    On May 19, 1997, the Subcommittee on Telecommunications, 
Trade, and Consumer Protection held an oversight field hearing 
in Peoria, Illinois, to examine the television ratings 
guidelines developed by the television and media industries. 
Testimony was received from representatives of industry groups 
and private citizens of the Peoria community. The purpose of 
the hearing was to help determine whether the industry 
guidelines were being widely accepted by the general public and 
what changes parents and children thought should be made.

  reauthorization of the national highway traffic safety administration

    On May 22, 1997, the Subcommittee on Telecommunications, 
Trade, and Consumer Protection held a hearing on the 
Reauthorization of the National Highway Traffic Safety 
Administration. The purpose of the hearing was to evaluate the 
operations of the National Highway Traffic Safety 
Administration since it was last reauthorized in 1991. The 
Subcommittee received testimony from representatives of 
domestic and international automobile manufacturers, insurers, 
consumer advocacy groups, think tanks, and the Administration.

                            video competition

    On July 29, 1997, and October 30, 1997, the Subcommittee on 
Telecommunications, Trade, and Consumer Protection held 
oversight hearings on the status of, and barriers to, 
competition in the video marketplace. Testimony was received 
from representatives of industry trade groups, Federal 
regulators, telecommunications companies, and consumer groups. 
The purpose of the hearings was to explore what barriers 
existed to the development of long-standing vibrant competition 
to incumbent cable providers and to consider the effectiveness 
of existing law intended to provide access to programming for 
video programming distributors. These same issues were also 
addressed at a Subcommittee legislative hearing on April 1, 
1998, on H.R. 2921 and H.R. 3210.

        reauthorization of the consumer product safety commission

    In mid-1996, the Chairmen of the House Committee on 
Commerce and the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and 
Transportation jointly requested that the General Accounting 
Office (GAO) review the Consumer Product Safety Commission's 
(CPSC's) project selection, use of risk assessment and cost-
benefit analysis, as well as the agency's information release 
procedures.
    On October 23, 1997, the Subcommittee on 
Telecommunications, Trade, and Consumer Protection held a 
hearing on the reauthorization of the CPSC, focusing on a 
General Accounting Office Report, prepared in the response to 
the joint request, entitled Consumer Product Safety Commission: 
Better Data Needed to Help Identify and Analyze Potential 
Hazards. Testimony was received from representatives of the GAO 
and CPSC Commissioners.

   tobacco settlement: views of businesses excluded from the tobacco 
                        settlement negotiations

    On February 25, 1998, the Subcommittee on 
Telecommunications, Trade, and Consumer Protection held a 
hearing as part of a larger series of hearings held by the 
Committee and its subcommittees on the ramifications of the 
proposed settlement between the nation's largest tobacco 
product manufacturers and several State attorneys general. This 
hearing focused on the concerns of businesses excluded from 
that settlement agreement. The Subcommittee heard testimony 
from representatives of large and small retailers, small 
cigarette and smokeless tobacco product manufacturers, cigar 
manufacturers, and large and small vending machine operators.

                     wireless enhanced 911 services

    On March 24, 1998, the Subcommittee on Telecommunications, 
Trade, and Consumer Protection held an oversight hearing on 
wireless enhanced 911 issues. Testimony was received from a 
Member of Congress, public safety representatives, a local 
mayor, and representatives of Federal agencies, industry trade 
groups, and a telecommunications company. The purpose of the 
hearing was to explore issues relating to the advancement of 
enhanced 911 (E911) wireless technologies and recent Federal 
Communications Commissions rules intended to promote E911, 
including facilities siting on Federal land, local zoning 
authority, a national 911 telephone number, State and local 
funding, crash information systems, and liability protections.

        reauthorization of the federal communications commission

    On March 31, 1998, the Subcommittee on Telecommunications, 
Trade, and Consumer Protection held an oversight hearing on the 
Federal Communications Commission (FCC). Testimony was received 
from the Chairman of the FCC and the four Commissioners. The 
purpose of the hearing was to consider issues relevant to 
legislative efforts to reauthorize the FCC.

 digital high definition television: coming soon to a home theater near 
                                  you

    On April 23, 1998, the Subcommittee on Telecommunications, 
Trade, and Consumer Protection held an oversight hearing on the 
status and development of digital television. Testimony was 
received from representatives of industry trade groups, 
equipment manufacturers, and telecommunications companies. The 
purpose of the hearing was to examine the different 
technologies and transmission standards available to 
broadcasters to provide digital television, including high 
definition television. The hearing also examined how well 
consumers would convert to digital from analog television.

                           electronic commerce

    The Subcommittee on Telecommunications, Trade and Consumer 
Protection held five hearings as part of the Committee's 
electronic commerce initiative. On May 7, 1998, the 
Subcommittee on Telecommunications, Trade and Consumer 
Protection held a hearing which focused on the next generation 
of high-speed data networks for access to the Internet and 
related computer networks. The hearing explored the development 
and deployment of high-speed and high-bandwidth networks 
designed to provide access to the Internet and other online 
services for residential and small business customers. A 
variety of new technologies were discussed, including cable 
modems, Digital Subscriber Lines (DSL) and satellite 
broadcasting. In addition, the current state of the Internet 
backbone was discussed. Witnesses included representatives of 
industries that provide, or plan to provide, high-speed access 
to the Internet or other computer networks.
    On May 21, 1998, the Subcommittee held a hearing which 
focused on online commercial activities. The hearing explored 
how electronic commerce is changing the way business is 
conducted, barriers to the growth and development of electronic 
commerce, consumer concerns over electronic commerce, and the 
importance of electronic authentication in electronic commerce. 
Witnesses included representatives from companies currently 
engaged in electronic commerce.
    On June 10, 1998, the Subcommittee held a hearing which 
focused on the future of the Internet Domain Name System. The 
hearing explored the Administration's plan to transfer 
management of the Domain Name System to the private sector, the 
possible addition of new generic Top Level Domains, the 
interplay between trademarks and domain names, and future 
developments affecting the Domain Name System. Witnesses 
included representatives of the National Science Foundation, 
the National Telecommunications and Information Administration, 
companies currently providing, or intending to provide, domain 
name registration services, trademark holders, and Internet 
users.
    On June 25, 1998, the Subcommittee held a hearing which 
focused on the protection of consumers in Cyberspace. The 
hearing examined the migration of traditional fraudulent 
business practices to the Internet, actions taken by Federal 
and State law enforcement authorities and efforts by the 
business community to promote consumer confidence online. 
Witnesses included representatives from the Federal Trade 
Commission, the New York State Attorney General's office, 
business-consumer groups, and the academic community.
    On July 21, 1998, the Subcommittee held a hearing which 
focused on the issue of privacy online. The hearing examined 
the Federal Trade Commission's June 1998 study of privacy 
practices of commercial website operators, current efforts by 
the private sector to establish a self-regulatory system to 
protect the privacy of both adults and children while online, 
and the European Union's impending data protection directive. 
The hearing also focused on H.R. 2368, the Data Privacy Act of 
1997. Witnesses included the Chairman of the Federal Trade 
Commission, Commissioners of the Federal Trade Commission, 
representatives of the civil liberties and public policy 
communities, industry observers, and representatives of 
companies involved in the establishment of a privacy self-
regulatory model.

                           china trade policy

    On May 14, 1998, the Subcommittee on Telecommunications, 
Trade, and Consumer Protection held an oversight hearing on 
China Trade Policy. Witnesses included an Under Secretary from 
the Department of Commerce, representatives from private 
industry, including the textile and semiconductor industries, 
and other experts. The hearing provided information on the 
status of U.S. trade policy with China as well as 
considerations to be taken into account in dealing with the 
People's Republic of China in the future.

           protecting consumers against cramming and spamming

    On September 28, 1998, the Subcommittee on 
Telecommunications, Trade, and Consumer Protection held an 
oversight hearing to examine the anti-consumer 
telecommunications practices known as ``cramming,'' the 
unauthorized addition of service-related charges to consumers' 
bills, and ``spamming,'' the sending of unsolicited commercial 
electronic mail. Testimony was received from State officials, 
Federal regulators, and representatives of industry trade 
groups and telecommunications companies. The purpose of the 
hearing was to explore the number and scope of consumer 
complaints regarding cramming and spamming. The hearing also 
examined collective efforts by industry and State and Federal 
regulators to prevent the occurrence of cramming and spamming.

                           domain name system

    By letter, dated October 22, 1998, to the Secretary of 
Commerce and the Senior Advisor to the President, the Committee 
on Commerce initiated an inquiry and document request 
concerning the Administration's plan to transfer management of 
the Internet Domain Name System (DNS) from the Federal 
government to the private sector. The Committee was concerned 
about: (1) the legal authority of the Department of Commerce to 
assume management of the DNS from the National Science 
Foundation and to transfer this authority to the private 
sector; (2) the openness of the process of creating a non-
profit corporation to assume management of the DNS; (3) the 
short public comment period provided by the Department of 
Commerce to comment on the structure and bylaws of the proposed 
non-profit corporation; and (4) the consideration and 
nomination of individuals to the interim board of directors to 
the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers, the 
proposed non-profit corporation.
    The Committee on Commerce will continue to monitor the 
formation of the non-profit corporation and the transfer of 
management of the Domain Name System from the Department of 
Commerce to this new corporation in the 106th Congress.

                              Hearings Held

    Cellular Privacy: ``Is Anyone Listening? You Betcha!.--
Oversight Hearing on Cellular Privacy: ``Is Anyone Listening? 
You Betcha!'' Hearing held on February 5, 1997. PRINTED, Serial 
Number 105-22.
     The Armored Car Reciprocity Amendments of 1997.--Hearing 
on H.R. 624, the Armored Car Reciprocity Amendments of 1997. 
Hearing held on February 11, 1997. PRINTED, Serial Number 105-
1.
     Spectrum Management Policy.--Oversight Hearing on Spectrum 
Management Policy. Hearing held February 12, 1997. PRINTED, 
Serial Number 105-10.
     The World Trade Organization Telecom Agreement: Results 
and Next Steps.--Oversight Hearing on the World Trade 
Organization (WTO) Telecom Agreement: Results and Next Steps. 
Hearing held on March 19, 1997. PRINTED, Serial Number 105-11.
     Product Liability Reform.--Oversight Hearing on Product 
Liability Reform and Consumer Access to Life-Saving Products. 
Hearing held on April 8, 1997. PRINTED, Serial Number 105-31.
     Reauthorization of the National Telecommunications and 
Information Administration.--Oversight Hearing on 
Reauthorization of the National Telecommunications and 
Information Administration. Hearing held on April 24, 1997. 
PRINTED, Serial Number 105-13.
     Air Bags, Car Seats and Child Safety.--Oversight Hearing 
on Air Bags, Car Seats and Child Safety. Hearing held on April 
28, 1997. PRINTED, Serial Number 105-16.
     Product Liability Reform.--Oversight Hearing on Product 
Liability Reform and How the Legal Fee Structure Affects 
Consumer Compensation. Hearing held on April 30, 1997. PRINTED, 
Serial Number 105-31.
     The New TV Ratings System: How Is It Playing in Peoria?--
Oversight Field Hearing in Peoria, Illinois on the New TV 
Ratings System: How Is It Playing in Peoria? Hearing held on 
May 19, 1997. PRINTED, Serial Number 105-23.
     Reauthorization of the National Highway Traffic Safety 
Administration.--Oversight Hearing on Reauthorization of the 
National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. Hearing held on 
May 22, 1997. PRINTED, Serial Number 105-30.
     The National Salvage Motor Vehicle Consumer Protection Act 
of 1997.--Hearing on H.R. 1839, the National Salvage Motor 
Vehicle Consumer Protection Act of 1997. Hearing held on June 
26, 1997. PRINTED, Serial Number 105-35.
     The Internet Tax Freedom Act.--Hearing on H.R. 1054, the 
Internet Tax Freedom Act. Hearing held on July 11, 1997. 
PRINTED, Serial Number 105-33.
     Video Competition.--Oversight Hearing on Video 
Competition: The Status of Competition Among Video Delivery 
Systems. Hearing held on July 29, 1997. PRINTED, Serial Number 
105-47.
     The Security and Freedom Through Encryption (SAFE) Act.--
Hearing on H.R. 695, the Security and Freedom Through 
Encryption (SAFE) Act of 1997. Hearing held on September 4, 
1997. PRINTED, Serial Number 105-39.
     The Communications Satellite Competition and Privatization 
Act of 1997.--Hearing on H.R. 1872, the Communications 
Satellite Competition and Privatization Act of 1997. Hearing 
held on September 30, 1997. PRINTED, Serial Number 105-61.
     Reauthorization of the Consumer Product Safety 
Commission.--Oversight Hearing on Reauthorization of the 
Consumer Product Safety Commission. Hearing held on October 23, 
1997. PRINTED, Serial Number 105-54.
     The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration 
Reauthorization Act of 1997.--Hearing on H.R. 2691, the 
National Highway Traffic Safety Administration Reauthorization 
Act of 1997. Hearing held on October 29, 1997. PRINTED, Serial 
Number 105-52.
     Video Competition.--Oversight Hearing on Video 
Competition: Access to Programming. Hearing held on October 30, 
1997. PRINTED, Serial Number 105-47.
     The Tobacco Settlement--Part 2.--Oversight Hearing on The 
Tobacco Settlement: Views of Businesses Excluded from the 
Tobacco Settlement. Hearing held on February 25, 1998. PRINTED, 
Serial Number 105-72.
     Wireless Enhanced 911 Services.--Oversight Hearing on 
Wireless Enhanced 911 Services. Hearing held on March 24, 1998. 
PRINTED, Serial Number 105-74.
     Reauthorization of the Federal Communications 
Commission.--Oversight Hearing on Reauthorization of the 
Federal Communications Commission. Hearing held on March 31, 
1998. PRINTED, Serial Number 105-91.
     Video Competition: Multichannel Programming.--Hearing on 
H.R. 2921, the Multichannel Video Competition and Consumer 
Protection Act of 1997; and H.R. 3210, the Copyright Compulsory 
License Improvement Act. Hearing held on April 1, 1998. 
PRINTED, Serial Number 105-80.
     High Definition Television: Coming to a Home Theater Near 
You.--Oversight Hearing on High Definition Television: Coming 
Soon to a Home Theater Near You. Hearing held on April 23, 
1998. PRINTED, Serial Number 105-89.
     Electronic Commerce--Part 3.--Oversight Hearing on 
Electronic Commerce: Building Tomorrow's Information 
Infrastructure. Hearing held on May 7, 1998. PRINTED, Serial 
Number 105-113.
     China Trade Policy.--Oversight Hearing on China Trade 
Policy. Hearing held on May 14, 1998. PRINTED, Serial Number 
105-93.
     Electronic Commerce--Part 3.--Oversight Hearing on 
Electronic Commerce: Doing Business On-line. Hearing held on 
May 21, 1998. PRINTED, Serial Number 105-113.
     The World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) 
Treaties Implementation Act.--Hearing on H.R. 2281, the World 
Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) Treaties 
Implementation Act. Hearing held on June 5, 1998. PRINTED, 
Serial Number 105-102.
     Wireless Communications and Public Safety Act of 1998.--
Hearing on H.R. 3844, the Wireless Communications and Public 
Safety Act of 1998. Hearing held on June 9, 1998. PRINTED, 
Serial Number 105-116.
     Electronic Commerce--Part 3.--Oversight Hearing on 
Electronic Commerce: The Future of the Domain Name System. 
Hearing held on June 10, 1998. PRINTED, Serial Number 105-113.
     Protecting Consumers Against Slamming.--Hearing on H.R. 
3050, Slamming Prevention and Consumer Protection Act of 1997; 
and H.R. 3888, Anti-Slamming Amendments Act. Hearing held on 
June 23, 1998. PRINTED, Serial Number 105-101.
     Electronic Commerce--Part 3.--Oversight Hearing on 
Electronic Commerce: Consumer Protection in Cyberspace. Hearing 
held on June 25, 1998. PRINTED, Serial Number 105-113.
     Electronic Commerce--Part 3.--Oversight Hearing on 
Electronic Commerce: Privacy in Cyberspace. This hearing also 
focused on H.R. 2368, the Data Privacy Act of 1997. Hearing 
held on July 21, 1998. PRINTED, Serial Number 105-113.
     Legislative Proposals to Protect Children from 
Inappropriate Materials on the Internet.--Hearing on H.R. 3783, 
the Child Online Protection Act; H.R. 1180, the Family Friendly 
Internet Access Act of 1997; H.R. 1964, the Communications 
Privacy and Consumer Empowerment Act; H.R. 3177, the Safe 
Schools Internet Act of 1998; H.R. 3442, the E-Rate Policy and 
Child Protection Act of 1998; and H.R. 774, the Internet 
Freedom and Child Protection Act of 1997. Hearing held on 
September 11, 1998. PRINTED, Serial Number 105-119.
     Spectrum Management Oversight.--Oversight Hearing on 
Spectrum Management Oversight. Hearing held on September 18, 
1998. PRINTED, Serial Number 105-134.
     Protecting Consumers Against Cramming and Spamming.--
Oversight Hearing on Protecting Consumers Against Cramming and 
Spamming. Hearing held on September 28, 1998. PRINTED, Serial 
Number 105-126.
     Public Broadcasting Reform Act of 1998.--Hearing on H.R. 
4067, the Public Broadcasting Reform Act of 1998. Hearing held 
on October 5, 1998. PRINTED, Serial Number 105-132.

            Subcommittee on Finance and Hazardous Materials

                             (Ratio: 15-12)

                    MICHAEL G. OXLEY, Ohio, Chairman

W.J. ``BILLY'' TAUZIN, Louisiana     THOMAS J. MANTON, New York
  Vice Chairman                      BART STUPAK, Michigan
BILL PAXON, New York                 ELIOT L. ENGEL, New York
PAUL E. GILLMOR, Ohio                THOMAS C. SAWYER, Ohio
JAMES C. GREENWOOD, Pennsylvania     TED STRICKLAND, Ohio
MICHAEL D. CRAPO, Idaho              DIANA DeGETTE, Colorado
NATHAN DEAL, Georgia                 EDWARD J. MARKEY, Massachusetts
STEVE LARGENT, Oklahoma              RALPH M. HALL, Texas
BRIAN P. BILBRAY, California         EDOLPHUS TOWNS, New York
GREG GANSKE, Iowa                    FRANK PALLONE, Jr., New Jersey
RICK WHITE, Washington               ELIZABETH FURSE, Oregon
RICK LAZIO, New York                 JOHN D. DINGELL, Michigan
BARBARA CUBIN, Wyoming                 (Ex Officio)
HEATHER WILSON, New Mexico
TOM BLILEY, Virginia
  (Ex Officio)

Jurisdiction: Securities, exchanges, and finance; solid waste, 
hazardous waste and toxic substances, including Superfund and RCRA 
(excluding mining, oil, gas, and coal combustion wastes); noise 
pollution control; insurance, except health insurance; and regulation 
of travel, tourism, and time.

                         Legislative Activities

   extension of the investment advisers supervision coordination act 
                             effective date

                        Public Law 105-8 (S. 410)

    To extend the effective date of the Investment Advisers 
Supervision Coordination Act.

Summary

    S. 410 extends the effective date of the Investment 
Advisers Supervision Coordination Act by 90 days. The 
implementation of that Act was required to be completed within 
180 days of enactment of the Public Law 104-290, the National 
Securities Markets Improvement Act of 1996.
    The Securities and Exchange Commission was in the process 
of effecting changes required by Public Law 104-290 when it 
determined that an extension of the effective date would be 
necessary to avoid regulatory gaps that might otherwise occur. 
S. 410 provides the requested extension in order to facilitate 
effective implementation of the law and to prevent regulatory 
uncertainty.

Legslative History

    Senators D'Amato, Gramm, Sarbanes, and Dodd introduced S. 
410 in the Senate on March 6, 1997. The legislation was 
referred to the Senate Committee on Banking, Housing, and Urban 
Affairs.
    On March 12, 1997, by unanimous consent, the Senate 
Committee on Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs was discharged 
from further consideration of S. 410. By unanimous consent, the 
Senate then proceeded to the immediate consideration of S. 410 
and passed the bill, without amendment.
    S. 410 was received in the House and held at the desk on 
March 13, 1997. Because of the time constraints and need to act 
swiftly because of the approaching deadline in Public Law 104-
290, the Committee on Commerce did not seek referral of the 
bill, agreeing instead to expedite the legislative process by 
taking S. 410 directly from the desk. On March 18, 1997, by 
unanimous consent, the House took S. 410 from the desk, 
considered the bill, and passed it without amendment, clearing 
the measure for the President.
    On March 21, 1997, S. 410 was presented to the President. 
The President signed S. 410 into law on March 31, 1997 (Public 
Law 105-8).

        national defense authorization act for fiscal year 1998

     Public Law 105-85 (H.R. 1119, S. 936, S. 924, S. Con. Res. 64)

                (Hazardous Materials Related Provisions)

    To authorize appropriations for fiscal year 1998 for 
military activities of the Department of Defense, for military 
construction, and for defense activities of the Department of 
Energy, to prescribe personnel strengths for such fiscal year 
for the Armed Forces, and for other purposes.

Summary

    Public Law 105-85 includes a number of provisions which 
fall within the jurisdiction of the Committee on Commerce, 
including several dealing with hazardous materials related 
issues. Members of the Committee on Commerce were appointed as 
conferees on these provisions and participated in the 
conference negotiations which led to the agreements contained 
in H.R. 1119.
    Section 343 of the Public Law provides the armed services 
with greater flexibility with respect to waste storage and 
disposal. Because the provisions did not in any way weaken 
existing environmental laws, the Committee on Commerce 
conferees supported the inclusion of the language.
    Section 1026 of the Public Law requires that the Secretary 
of the Navy, the Administrator of the Maritime Administration, 
and the Administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency 
submit to Congress a report on the implementation of the 
agreement between the Department of the Navy and the 
Environmental Protection Agency that became effective August 6, 
1997, and that is titled ``Export of Naval Vessels that May 
Contain Polychlorinated Biphenyls [PCBs] for Scrapping Outside 
the United States.'' The downsizing of the military, including 
the U.S. Navy, in the post-Cold War period has necessitated the 
``scrapping'' of unnecessary ships. Some of these ships contain 
PCBs, which are suspected carcinogens. In order to ensure 
protection of human health and the environment, the Committee 
conferees supported requiring this report, which will ensure 
that Congress will be kept apprised of the handling of PCBs 
from scrapped ships.
    Section 2835 of the Public Law provides for a simple land 
conveyance dealing with Fort Bragg, North Carolina. Conferees 
from the Committee on Commerce negotiated compromise language 
for this section to ensure that it had no effect on the 
operation of existing environmental laws.

Legslative History

    H.R. 1119 was introduced in the House by Representatives 
Spence and Dellums on March 19, 1997, and referred solely to 
the Committee on National Security. The Committee on National 
Security met to consider H.R. 1119 on June 11, 1997, and 
ordered the bill reported to the House, amended, by a roll call 
vote of 51 yeas to 3 nays. On June 16, 1997, the Committee on 
National Security reported H.R. 1119 to the House (H. Rpt. 105-
132).
    The Committee on Rules met on June 18, 1997, and granted a 
rule providing for the consideration of H.R. 1119. The rule was 
filed in the House as H. Res. 169. On June 19, 1997, the House 
passed H. Res. 169, amended, by a roll call vote of 322 yeas to 
101 nays.
    The House considered H.R. 1119 on June 19, June 20, June 
23, June 24, and June 25, 1997; and on June 25, 1997, passed 
the bill, amended, by a roll call vote of 304 yeas to 120 nays. 
On July 7, 1997, H.R. 1119 was received in the Senate, read 
twice, and placed on the Senate Calendar.
    On June 17, 1997, the Senate Committee on Armed Services 
reported an original measure to the Senate, which was 
introduced in the Senate by Mr. Thurmond as S. 924 and placed 
on the Senate Calendar (S. Rpt. 105-29). On June 18, 1997, the 
Senate Committee on Armed Services reported an original measure 
to the Senate, which was introduced in the Senate by Mr. 
Thurmond as S. 936 and placed on the Senate Calendar (No 
Written Report).
    The Senate considered S. 936 on June 19, June 20, July 7, 
July 8, July 9, July 10, and July 11, 1997. On July 11, 1997, 
the Senate passed S. 936, amended, by a roll call vote of 94 
yeas to 4 nays. On July 11, 1997, by unanimous consent, the 
Senate agreed to a request that S. Rpt. 105-29, the report to 
accompany S. 924, be deemed to be the report to accompany S. 
936. The Senate then, by unanimous consent, took H.R. 1119 from 
the Senate Calendar and passed the bill, amended with the text 
of S. 936 as passed by the Senate. The Senate insisted on its 
amendment to H.R. 1119, requested a conference with the House, 
and appointed conferees.
    On July 25, 1997, the House disagreed to the Senate 
amendment to H.R. 1119, agreed to a conference with the Senate, 
and appointed conferees. Members of the Committee on Commerce 
were appointed as conferees. The House, on July 25, 1997, also 
agreed by a roll call vote of 414 yeas to 0 nays to a motion to 
instruct the conferees and, by a roll call vote of 409 yeas to 
1 nay, agreed to a motion to close portions of the conference.
    On September 5, 1997, the House agreed to a second motion 
to instruct the conferees by a roll call vote of 261 yeas to 
150 nays. The conference report on H.R. 1119 was filed in the 
House on October 23, 1997 (H. Rpt. 105-340).
    On October 23, 1997, the Committee on Rules met and granted 
a rule providing for the consideration of the conference report 
on H.R. 1119. The rule was filed in the House as H. Res. 278. 
On October 28, 1997, the House passed H. Res. 278 by a roll 
call vote of 353 yeas to 59 nays.
    The House agreed to the conference report by a roll call 
vote of 286 yeas to 123 nays on October 28, 1997. The Senate 
agreed to the conference report by a roll call vote of 90 yeas 
to 10 nays on November 6, 1997.
    On November 6, 1997, the Senate also agreed to S. Con. Res. 
64, a resolution to provide for corrections in the enrollment 
of H.R. 1119, pursuant to a unanimous consent request agreed to 
on October 31, 1997. S. Con. Res. 64 was received in the House 
on November 6, 1997, and held at the desk. No further action 
was taken on S. Con. Res. 64.
    H.R. 1119 was presented to the President on November 6, 
1997. The President signed H.R. 1119 into law on November 18, 
1997 (Public Law 105-85).

 strom thurmond national defense authorization act for fiscal year 1999

            Public Law 105-261 (H.R. 3616, S. 2057, S. 2060)

                (Hazardous Materials Related Provisions)

    To authorize appropriations for fiscal year 1999 for 
military activities of the Department of Defense, for military 
construction, and for defense activities of the Department of 
Energy, to prescribe personnel strengths for such fiscal year 
for the Armed Forces, and for other purposes.

Summary

    Public Law 105-261 includes a number of provisions which 
fall within the jurisdiction of the Committee on Commerce, 
including one provision dealing with hazardous materials 
related issues. Members of the Committee on Commerce were 
appointed as conferees on this provision and participated in 
the conference negotiations which led to the agreements 
contained in H.R. 3636.
    Section 324 of the Public Law requires that the Secretary 
of Defense, in consultation with the Administrator of the 
Environmental Protection Agency and the Secretary of State, 
submit a report to Congress concerning the status of foreign-
manufactured polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) at foreign U.S. 
military installations. Provisions in the Senate-passed bill 
would have permitted the Department of Defense to import such 
PCBs for disposal or treatment. The Senate-passed provisions 
would have represented a significant change to current law, 
particularly the Toxic Substances Control Act. Conferees from 
the Committee on Commerce were responsible for changing the 
Senate-passed language into a study. The study, due on March 1, 
1999, will provide information on whether any changes to 
existing environmental laws are necessary or appropriate.

Legslative History

    H.R. 3616 was introduced in the House by Representatives 
Spence and Skelton on April 1, 1998, and referred solely to the 
Committee on National Security. The Committee on National 
Security met to consider H.R. 3616 on May 6, 1998, and ordered 
the bill reported to the House, amended, by a voice vote. On 
May 12, 1998, the Committee on National Security reported H.R. 
3616 to the House (H. Rpt. 105-532).
    The Committee on Rules met on May 14, 1998, and granted a 
rule providing for the consideration of H.R. 3616. The rule was 
filed in the House as H. Res. 435. On May 19, 1998, the House 
passed H. Res. 435 by a voice vote. On May 19, 1998, the 
Committee on Rules met and granted a second rule providing for 
the further consideration of H.R. 3616. The rule was filed in 
the House as H. Res. 441. On May 20, 1998, the House passed H. 
Res. 441 by a roll call vote of 304 yeas to 108 nays.
    The House considered H.R. 3616 on May 19, May 20, and May 
21, 1998; and on May 21, 1998, passed the bill, amended, by a 
roll call vote of 357 yeas to 60 nays. On May 22, 1998, H.R. 
3616 was received in the Senate, read twice, and placed on the 
Senate Calendar.
    On May 11, 1998, the Senate Committee on Armed Services 
reported an original measure to the Senate, which was 
introduced in the Senate by Mr. Thurmond as S. 2060 and placed 
on the Senate Calendar (S. Rpt. 105-189). On May 11, 1998, the 
Senate Committee on Armed Services reported an original measure 
to the Senate, which was introduced in the Senate by Mr. 
Thurmond as S. 2057 and placed on the Senate Calendar (No 
Written Report).
    The Senate considered S. 2057 on May 13, May 14, June 18, 
June 19, June 22, June 23, June 24, and June 25, 1998. On June 
25, 1998, the Senate passed S. 2057, amended, by a roll call 
vote of 88 yeas to 4 nays. S. 2057 was received in the House on 
July 20, 1998, and held at the desk. On October 21, 1998, S. 
2057 was referred to the House Committee on National Security. 
No further action was taken on S. 2057 in the 105th Congress.
    On June 25, 1998, the Senate, by unanimous consent, took 
H.R. 3616 from the Senate Calendar and passed the bill, amended 
with the text of S. 2057 as passed by the Senate. The Senate 
insisted on its amendment to H.R. 3616, requested a conference 
with the House, and appointed conferees.
    On July 22, 1998, the House disagreed to the Senate 
amendment to H.R. 3616, agreed to a conference with the Senate, 
and appointed conferees. Members of the Committee on Commerce 
were appointed as conferees. On July 22, and July 23, 1998, the 
House considered a motion to instruct the conferees. On July 
23, 1998, the House agreed to a motion to instruct the 
conferees by a roll call vote of 424 yeas to 0 nays, with 1 
voting present. The House also agreed to a motion to close 
portions of the conference by a roll call vote of 412 yeas to 5 
nays.
    The conference report on H.R. 3616 was filed in the House 
on September 22, 1998 (H. Rpt. 105-736).
    The Committee on Rules met on September 23, 1998, and 
granted a rule providing for the consideration of the 
conference report on H.R. 3616. The rule was filed in the House 
as H. Res. 549. On September 24, 1998, the House passed H. Res. 
549 by a voice vote.
    The House agreed to the conference report by a roll call 
vote of 373 yeas to 50 nays on September 24, 1998. The Senate 
considered the conference report on September 30, and October 
1, 1998; and on October 1, 1998, the Senate agreed to the 
conference report by a roll call vote of 96 yeas to 2 nays.
    H.R. 3616 was presented to the President on October 6, 
1998. The President signed H.R. 3616 into law on October 17, 
1998 (Public Law 105-261).

departments of veterans affairs and housing and urban development, and 
             independent agencies appropriations act, 1999

                Public Law 105-276 (H.R. 4194, S. 2168)

    Making appropriations for the Departments of Veterans 
Affairs and Housing and Urban Development, and for sundry 
independent agencies, boards, commissions, corporations, and 
offices for the fiscal year ending September 30, 1999, and for 
other purposes.

Summary

    Public Law 105-276 provides appropriations for Fiscal Year 
1999 for the Departments of Veterans Affairs and Housing and 
Urban Development, and for sundry independent agencies, boards, 
commissions, corporations, and offices. Additionally, the Act 
contains a number of provisions falling with the jurisdiction 
of the Committee on Commerce, including provisions which amend 
the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation and 
Liability Act (CERCLA) with respect to sureties. The provisions 
expand the time periods in which sureties are afforded certain 
protections from CERCLA liabilities. Similar provisions were 
contained in comprehensive Superfund reform legislation 
introduced by Members of the Committee on Commerce.

Legslative History

    H.R. 4194 was introduced in the House on July 8, 1998, by 
Mr. Lewis, as an original measure, and reported to the House on 
the same day by the Committee on Appropriations (H. Rpt. 105-
610). The House considered H.R. 4194 on July 17, July 23, and 
July 29, 1998. On July 29, 1998, the House passed H.R. 4194, 
amended, by a roll call vote of 259 yeas to 164 nays.
    On June 12, 1998, the Senate Committee on Appropriations 
reported S. 2168, a companion bill, to the Senate (S. Rpt. 105-
216). The Senate considered S. 2168 on July 6, July 7, July 16, 
and July 17, 1998. On July 17, 1998, the Senate passed S. 2168, 
amended, by a voice vote.
    On July 30, 1998, H.R. 4194 was received in the Senate. 
Pursuant to a unanimous consent agreement reached on July 16, 
1998, the Senate proceeded to the immediate consideration of 
H.R. 4194; passed the bill amended with the text of S. 2168, as 
passed by the Senate on July 17, 1998; insisted on the Senate 
amendment to H.R. 4194; requested a conference with the House; 
and appointed conferees. Passage of S. 2168 was then vitiated 
and the bill was indefinitely postponed.
    On September 15, 1998, the House disagreed to the Senate 
amendment to H.R. 4194, agreed to a conference with the Senate, 
and appointed conferees. The House, on September 15, 1998, also 
agreed by a roll call vote of 405 yeas to 0 nays to a motion to 
instruct the conferees. The conference report on H.R. 4194 was 
filed in the House on October 5, 1998 (H. Rpt. 105-769). On 
October 6, 1998, the House agreed to the conference report on 
H.R. 4194 by a roll call vote of 409 yeas to 14 nays. The 
Senate agreed to the conference report on H.R. 4194 on October 
8, 1998, by a roll call vote of 96 yeas to 1 nay.
    On October 10, 1998, H.R. 4194 was presented to the 
President. On October 21, 1998, the President signed H.R. 4194 
into law (Public Law 105-276).

          securities litigation uniform standards act of 1998

                (Public Law 105-353 (S. 1260, H.R. 1689)

Summary

    The Securities Litigation Uniform Standards Act of 1998 
amends the Securities Act of 1933 and the Securities and 
Exchange Act of 1934 to limit the conduct of securities class 
action under State law.
    Consistent with the determination that Congress made in the 
National Securities Markets Improvement Act (NSMIA) (Public Law 
104-290), this legislation establishes uniform national rules 
for securities class action litigation involving our national 
capital markets. Under the legislation, class actions relating 
to a ``covered security'' (as defined by section 18(b)(1) of 
the Securities Act of 1933 which was added to that Act by 
NSMIA) alleging fraud or manipulation must be maintained 
pursuant to the provisions of Federal securities law, in 
Federal court (subject to certain exceptions).
    ``Class actions'' that the legislation bars from State 
court include actions brought on behalf of more than 50 
persons; actions brought on behalf of one or more unnamed 
parties; and so-called ``mass actions,'' in which a group of 
lawsuits filed in the same court are joined or otherwise 
proceed as a single action.
    The legislation provides for certain exceptions for 
specific types of actions. The legislation preserves State 
jurisdiction over: (1) certain actions that are based upon the 
law of the State in which the issuer of the security in 
question is incorporated; (2) actions brought by States and 
political subdivisions and State pension plans, so long as the 
plaintiffs are named and have authorized participation in the 
action; and (3) actions by a party to a contractual agreement 
(such as an indenture trustee) seeking to enforce provisions of 
the indenture.
    The legislation also provides for an exception from the 
definition of ``class action'' for certain shareholder 
derivative actions.
    Additionally, the bill authorizes funding for the 
Securities and Exchange Commission for Fiscal Year 1999 at the 
level of $351.28 million and includes limitations on funding 
levels for certain miscellaneous expenses. Finally, the bill 
makes a number of clerical and technical amendments to various 
securities laws.

Legslative History

    H.R. 1689 was introduced in the House on May 21, 1997, by 
Mr. White and 24 cosponsors. The bill was referred solely to 
the Committee on Commerce.
    S. 1260, a companion bill, was introduced in the Senate on 
October 7, 1997, by Mr. Gramm and twelve cosponsors and was 
referred to the Senate Committee on Banking, Housing, and Urban 
Affairs. On May 4, 1998, the Senate Committee on Banking House 
and Urban Affairs reported S. 1260 to the Senate (S. Rpt. 105-
182). On May 13, 1998, the Senate considered S. 1260 and passed 
the bill, amended, by a roll call vote of 79 yeas to 21 nays. 
S. 1260 was received in the House on May 14, 1998, and held at 
the desk.
    On May 19, 1998, the Subcommittee on Finance and Hazardous 
Materials held a legislative hearing on H.R. 1689. The 
Subcommittee received testimony from Federal and State 
regulators, academic experts, a representative of a consumer 
group, and attorneys representing plaintiffs and defendants.
    On June 10, 1998, the Subcommittee on Finance and Hazardous 
Materials met in open markup session and approved H.R. 1689 for 
Full Committee consideration, amended, by a roll call vote of 
21 yeas to 4 nays. On June 24, 1998, the Full Committee met in 
open markup session and ordered H.R. 1689 reported to the 
House, amended, by a voice vote, a quorum being present. As 
amended by the Full Committee and ordered reported to the 
House, two new titles were added to H.R. 1689. Title II 
authorized funding for the Securities and Exchange Commission 
for Fiscal Year 1999 at the level of $351.28 million and 
included the limitations placed on funding levels for certain 
miscellaneous expenses contained in H.R. 1262 as passed by the 
House. Title III made a number of clerical and technical 
amendments to various securities laws. The Committee on 
Commerce reported H.R. 1689 to the House on July 21, 1998 (H. 
Rpt. 105-640).
    The House considered H.R. 1689 under Suspension of the 
Rules on July 21, and July 22, 1998. On July 22, 1998, the 
House passed H.R. 1689, amended, by a roll call vote of 340 
yeas to 83 nays, with 1 voting present. On July 22, 1998, by 
unanimous consent, the House took S. 1260 from the desk and 
passed the bill after striking all after the enacting clause 
and inserting the text of H.R. 1689, as passed by the House. 
H.R. 1689 was then laid on the table.
    On July 29, 1998, the Senate disagreed to the House 
amendment, requested a conference with the House, and appointed 
conferees. On September 16, 1998, the House insisted on its 
amendment, agreed to a conference with the Senate, and 
appointed conferees. The conference report on S. 1260 was filed 
in the House on October 9, 1998 (H. Rpt. 105-803). On October 
13, 1998, by unanimous consent, the Senate proceeded to the 
immediate consideration of the conference report and agreed to 
the conference report. On October 13, 1998, the House 
considered the conference report under Suspension of the Rules, 
and agreed to the conference report by a roll call vote of 319 
yeas to 82 nays.
    S. 1260 was presented to the President on October 22, 1998. 
The President signed S. 1260 into law on November 3, 1998 
(Public Law 105-353).

      international anti-bribery and fair competition act of 1998

                Public Law 105-366 (S. 2375, H.R. 4353)

    To amend the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 and the 
Foreign Corrupt Practices Act of 1977 to improve the 
competitiveness of American business and promote foreign 
commerce, and other purposes.

Summary

    The International Anti-Bribery and Fair Competition Act of 
1998 amends the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 and the Foreign 
Corrupt Practices Act of 1977 (FCPA) to improve the 
competitiveness of American business and promote foreign 
commerce. It accomplishes this by including implementing 
language for the Organization for Economic Cooperation and 
Development (OECD) Convention on Combating Bribery of Foreign 
Public Officials in International Business Transactions (the 
OECD Convention). The bill also includes reporting requirements 
to monitor the implementation and enforcement of other nations' 
commitments under the OECD Convention. It also includes a 
section to promote the reduction of privileges and immunities 
for international organizations providing commercial 
communications services (e.g., INTELSAT and Inmarsat). The 
legislation's overall objective is to level the playing field 
for business worldwide by seeking to reduce foreign bribery 
generally as well as special privileges and immunities from law 
in the satellite industry.
    The legislation contains a number of changes to the FCPA to 
implement the OECD Convention which include the following: 
first, the FCPA criminalized payments made to influence any 
decision of a foreign official to obtain business. S. 2375 
amends the FCPA prohibitions to include payments made to secure 
``any improper advantage.'' Second, the FCPA covered only 
``issuers'' and ``domestic concerns.'' S. 2375 amends the FCPA 
to cover acts by foreign natural and legal persons (i.e., 
corporations) committed within the territory of the United 
States. Third, the legislation amends the FCPA's definition of 
``foreign public official'' to include officials of public 
international organizations. Fourth, the legislation amends the 
FCPA to provide for jurisdiction over the acts of U.S. 
businesses and nationals outside the United States. Fifth, the 
legislation amends the FCPA's penalty sections relating to 
issuers and domestic concerns so that penalties for non-U.S. 
citizens are equivalent to those for U.S. citizens. Prior to 
enactment of S. 2375, under the FCPA, non-U.S. citizen 
employees and agents were subject only to civil, rather than 
criminal, penalties. S. 2375 eliminates this restriction and 
subjects all employees or agents of U.S. businesses to both 
civil and criminal penalties.
    The legislation also requires the Secretary of Commerce to 
report to the Congress on other nations' progress in 
implementing the OECD Convention and other matters. It contains 
a provision dealing with two international public organizations 
covered by the FCPA. This provision states that the 
international organizations providing commercial communications 
services (INTELSAT and Inmarsat, the intergovernmental 
satellite organizations) will not be provided immunity from 
suit or legal process in connection with such organization's 
capacity as a provider of commercial communications services, 
directly or indirectly, except as required by U.S. 
international obligations. It also directs the President, in a 
manner consistent with international agreements, to take all 
appropriate actions necessary to eliminate or reduce 
substantially any remaining privileges and immunities of such 
organizations.

Legslative History

    On June 25, 1998, the Senate Committee on Banking, Housing 
and Urban Affairs ordered reported to the Senate an original 
bill, entitled the International Anti-Bribery Act, which 
contained the Senate's version of implementing language for the 
OECD Convention. On July 31, 1998, the Senate Committee on 
Banking, Housing and Urban Affairs reported an original measure 
to the Senate, which was introduced in the Senate by Mr. 
D'Amato as S. 2375 and placed on the Senate Calendar (S. Rpt. 
105-277). On July 31, 1998, by unanimous consent, the Senate 
proceeded to the immediate consideration of S. 2375 and passed 
the bill without amendment. S. 2375 was received in the House 
on August 3, 1998, and held at the desk.
    H.R. 4353, a companion bill, was introduced in the House on 
July 30, 1998, by Representatives Bliley and Oxley. The bill 
was referred solely to the Committee on Commerce.
    The Subcommittee on Finance and Hazardous Materials held a 
legislative hearing on H.R. 4353 on September 10, 1998. 
Testimony was received from a representative of the 
Administration and a representative of the Securities and 
Exchange Commission. On September 16, 1998, the Subcommittee on 
Finance and Hazardous Materials met in open markup session and 
approved H.R. 4353, for Full Committee consideration, amended, 
by a voice vote. On September 24, 1998, the Full Committee met 
in open markup session and ordered H.R. 4353 reported to the 
House, amended, by a voice vote, a quorum being present. The 
Committee on Commerce reported H.R. 4353 to the House on 
October 8, 1998 (H. Rpt. 105-802).
    The House considered H.R. 4353 under Suspension of the 
Rules on October 9, 1998, and passed the bill, amended, by a 
voice vote. On October 9, 1998, by unanimous consent, the House 
took S. 2375 from the desk and passed the bill after striking 
all after the enacting clause and inserting the text of H.R. 
4353, as passed by the House. The House also amended the title 
of the Senate bill. H.R. 4353 was then laid on the table.
    S. 2375 was returned to the Senate on October 10, 1998. On 
October 14, 1998, by unanimous consent, the Senate concurred in 
the House amendments to S. 2375 with a further amendment. On 
October 20, 1998, by unanimous consent, the House disagreed to 
Senate amendments numbered 2 through 6 to the House amendments 
to S. 2375 and concurred in Senate amendment numbered 1 with an 
amendment. On October 21, 1998, by unanimous consent, the 
Senate receded from its amendments numbered 2 through 6 to the 
House amendments to S. 2375 and concurred in the House 
amendment to the Senate amendment numbered 1, clearing the 
measure for the President.
    S. 2375 was presented to the President on November 2, 1998. 
The President signed S. 2375 into law on November 10, 1998 
(Public Law 105-366).

   leaking underground storage tank trust fund amendments act of 1997

                           (H.R. 688, S. 555)

    To amend the Solid Waste Disposal Act to require at least 
85 percent of funds appropriated to the Environmental 
Protection Agency from the Leaking Underground Storage Tank 
Trust Fund to be distributed to States for cooperative 
agreements for undertaking corrective action and for 
enforcement of subtitle I of such Act.

Summary

    H.R. 688 expands the purposes of the Leaking Underground 
Storage Tank Trust Fund and requires that the Environmental 
Protection Agency give at least 85 percent of its annual 
appropriation from the trust fund to States for administration 
of the program.
    Under H.R. 688, the expanded purposes of the trust fund 
allow States to use the trust funds to cover necessary 
administrative expenses directly related to the operation of 
State financial assurance programs under 9004(c)(1) of the 
Solid Waste Disposal Act. States may also use the funds to 
enforce Federal, State or local tank leak detection, prevention 
and other requirements through State and local programs. 
Finally, States may use the funds to take corrective actions 
and compensate parties for cleanups of releases through 
9004(c)(1) programs in cases where the State determines that 
the financial resources of an owner or operator, excluding 
resources provided by programs under 9004(c)(1), are not 
adequate to pay for the corrective action without significantly 
impairing the ability of an owner or operator to continue in 
business.

Legslative History

    On February 11, 1997, H.R. 688 was introduced in the House 
by Mr. Dan Schaefer and forty cosponsors. The bill was referred 
to the Committee on Commerce, and in addition, to the Committee 
on Ways and Means.
    The Subcommittee on Finance and Hazardous Materials held a 
legislative hearing on H.R. 688 on March 20, 1997. The 
Subcommittee heard testimony from the representatives of the 
Environmental Protection Agency, State governments, and 
industry. Immediately following the hearing on March 20, 1997, 
the Subcommittee on Finance and Hazardous Materials met in open 
markup session to consider H.R. 688 and approved the bill for 
Full Committee consideration, without amendment, by a voice 
vote.
    The Full Committee met in open markup session to consider 
H.R. 688 on April 16, 1997, and ordered the bill reported to 
the House, without amendment, by a voice vote, a quorum being 
present. The Committee on Commerce reported H.R. 688 to the 
House on April 17, 1997 (H. Rpt. 105-58, Part 1). On April 17, 
1997, referral of the bill to the Committee on Ways and Means 
was extended for a period ending not later than April 17, 1997. 
On April 17, 1997, the Committee on Ways and Means was 
discharged from further consideration of H.R. 688.
    The House considered H.R. 688 under Suspension of the Rules 
on April 23, 1997, and passed the bill, amended, by a voice 
vote.
    H.R. 688 was received in the Senate on April 24, 1997, read 
twice, and referred to the Senate Committee on Environment and 
Public Works. No further action was taken on H.R. 688 in the 
Senate in the 105th Congress.
    S. 555, a companion bill, was introduced in the Senate on 
April 10, 1997, by Mr. Allard and referred to the Senate 
Committee on Environment and Public Works. On September 23, 
1998, the Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works 
ordered S. 555, reported to the Senate, amended, by a voice 
vote. The Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works 
reported S. 555 to the Senate on October 1, 1998 (S. Rpt. 105-
360). No further action was taken on S. 555 in the Senate in 
the 105th Congress.

      securities and exchange commission authorization act of 1997

                              (H.R. 1262)

    To authorize appropriations for the Securities and Exchange 
Commission for fiscal years 1998 and 1999, and for other 
purposes.

Summary

    H.R. 1262 authorizes funding for the Securities and 
Exchange Commission for Fiscal Years 1998 and 1999 at the 
following levels: $320 million for Fiscal Year 1998 and $342.7 
million for Fiscal Year 1999.

Legslative History

    On March 6, 1997, the Subcommittee on Finance and Hazardous 
Materials held a hearing on reauthorization of the Securities 
and Exchange Commission. Testimony was received from the 
Honorable Arthur Levitt, Chairman of the Securities and 
Exchange Commission, and Commissioner Steven M.H. Wallman, 
Commissioner Isaac Hunt, and Commissioner Norman Johnson.
    H.R. 1262 was introduced in the House on April 9, 1997, by 
Mr. Oxley and four cosponsors. The bill was referred solely to 
the Committee on Commerce.
    On May 21, 1997, the Subcommittee on Finance and Hazardous 
Materials met in open markup session to consider H.R. 1262 and 
approved the bill for Full Committee consideration, without 
amendment, by a voice vote. On July 23, 1997, the Full 
Committee met in open markup session and ordered H.R. 1262 
reported to the House, without amendment, by a voice vote, a 
quorum being present. The Committee on Commerce reported H.R. 
1262 to the House on September 26, 1997 (H. Rpt. 105-274).
    The House considered H.R. 1262 under Suspension of the 
Rules on September 29, and October 1, 1997. On October 1, 1997, 
the House failed to suspend the Rules and pass H.R. 1262 by a 
roll call vote of 230 yeas to 170 nays. On November 13, 1997, 
by unanimous consent, the House adopted a motion to suspend the 
Rules and pass H.R. 1262 in the form considered by the House on 
September 29, 1997.
    H.R. 1262 was received in the Senate on January 27, 1998, 
read twice, and referred to the Senate Committee on Banking, 
Housing, and Urban Affairs. No further action was taken on H.R. 
1262 in the 105th Congress. However, legislative language 
reauthorizing the Securities and Exchange Commission for Fiscal 
Year 1999 and some of the provisions of H.R. 1262 were included 
in Title II of H.R. 1689 as passed by the House and 
subsequently included in S. 1260, and enacted into law as 
Public Law 105-353. For the legislative history of H.R. 1689 
and S. 1260, see the discussion of the Securities Litigation 
Uniform Standards Act of 1998 in this section.

                     financial services act of 1998

                  (H.R. 10, H. Res. 403, H. Res. 428)

    To enhance competition in the financial services industry 
by providing a prudential framework for the affiliation of 
banks, securities firms, and other financial service providers, 
and for other purposes.

Summary

    The purpose of H.R. 10, the Financial Services Act of 1998 
(FSA), is to enhance competition in the financial services 
industry by providing a prudential framework for the 
affiliation of banks, securities firms, and other financial 
service providers, and for other purposes. The primary 
objective of allowing such affiliations is to enhance consumer 
choice in the financial services marketplace, eliminate anti-
competitive regulatory disparities among financial services 
providers, and increase competition among providers of 
financial services. This legislation seeks to help participants 
in the financial services marketplace to realize the cost 
savings, efficiency, and other benefits resulting from 
increased competition. The FSA is also designed to improve the 
international competitiveness of U.S. companies, which may have 
been constrained by the barriers to affiliation that exist 
pursuant to certain sections of the Banking Act of 1933, 
commonly referred to as the Glass-Steagall Act. (Sections 16, 
20, 21, and 32 of the Banking Act of 1933 are referred to as 
the Glass-Steagall Act.)
    The FSA provides for a number of prudential safeguards 
designed to protect investors, avoid risk to the Federal 
deposit insurance funds, protect the safety and soundness of 
insured depository institutions and the Federal payments 
system, and protect consumers. The most significant provisions 
of the legislation are as follows:

                                Title I

    Title I repeals the anti-affiliation provision of the 
Glass-Steagall Act (Section 20 and Section 32 of the Banking 
Act of 1933). It also sets up a new structure, different from 
that in the Bank Holding Company Act of 1956, permitting 
affiliation among securities firms, insurance companies, and 
banks. The Federal Reserve will be the primary umbrella 
regulator of the new holding company structure.

                                Title II

    Title II defines the activities that will be regulated by 
the different Federal and State regulatory agencies. Bank 
exemptions from regulation under the definition of broker and 
dealer are eliminated, but limited exceptions are provided for 
banks in cases where investor protection concerns are minimal 
(relative to trust and fiduciary activities and employee and 
shareholder benefit plans). Finally, Title II permits the 
Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) to determine if new 
banking products meet the definition of a security and to 
regulate as such if the definition is met.

                               Title III

    Title III provides for the regulation of insurance. State 
functional insurance regulation is preserved for insurance 
sales and underwriting, subject to the ``significant 
interference'' standard set forth by the Supreme Court in the 
Barnett cases. The legislation sets forth a definition of 
insurance relative to allowable bank underwriting and removes 
the restrictions limiting bank insurance agencies to towns of 
5,000. A uniform licensing system is created for insurance 
brokerage, and a new standard for redomestication and 
demutualization is provided for States which do not have 
comparative laws.

                                Title IV

    Title IV prohibits future unitary thrift holding companies, 
while grandfathering current thrifts and thrift charters and 
their activities and powers.
      
    The legislation does not permit any Federally insured 
depository to affiliate with commercial entities.

Legslative History

    H.R. 10 was introduced in the House on January 7, 1997, by 
Mr. Leach and three cosponsors. The bill was referred to the 
Committee on Banking and Financial Services, and in addition to 
the Committee on Commerce. Within the Committee on Commerce, 
the bill was referred to the Subcommittee on Finance and 
Hazardous Materials.
    On June 20, 1997, the Committee on Banking and Financial 
Services considered H.R. 10, and ordered the bill reported to 
the House, amended, by a roll call vote of 28 yeas to 26 nays. 
The Committee on Banking and Financial Services reported H.R. 
10 to the House on July 3, 1997 (H. Rpt. 105-164, Part 1). On 
July 3, 1997, the referral of H.R. 10 to the Committee on 
Commerce was extended for a period ending not later than 
September 15, 1997.
    The Subcommittee on Finance and Hazardous Materials held 
three legislative hearings on H.R. 10 on July 17, July 25, and 
July 30, 1997. Witnesses giving testimony included: Federal 
banking, Federal trade, and Federal securities regulators; 
State insurance, State securities, and State banking 
regulators; securities and investment firm representatives; 
insurance company representatives; representatives from State 
charted banks, nationally charted banks, community banks, and 
thrifts; and representatives of consumer groups.
    On September 5, 1997, the referral of H.R. 10 to the 
Committee on Commerce was extended for a period ending not 
later than September 30, 1997. On September 17, 1997, the 
Committee on Banking and Financial Services filed a 
supplemental report on H.R. 10 in the House (H. Rpt. 105-164, 
Part 2). On September 30, 1997, the referral of H.R. 10 to the 
Committee on Commerce was extended for a period ending not 
later than October 31, 1997.
    The Subcommittee on Finance and Hazardous Materials met in 
open markup session on October 24, 1997, and approved H.R. 10 
for Full Committee consideration, amended, by a roll call vote 
of 23 yeas to 2 nays. On October 30, the Full Committee met in 
open markup session and ordered H.R. 10 reported to the House, 
amended, by a roll call vote of 33 yeas to 11 nays, with 2 
voting present. On October 30, 1997, the referral of H.R. 10 to 
the Committee on Commerce was extended for a period ending not 
later than November 3, 1997. The Committee on Commerce reported 
H.R. 10 to the House on November 3, 1997 (H. Rpt. 105-164, Part 
3). On January 28, 1998, the Committee on Commerce filed a 
supplemental report on H.R. 10 in the House (H. Rpt. 105-164, 
Part 4).
    On March 31, 1998 (legislative day of March 30, 1998), the 
Rules Committee met and granted a rule providing for the 
consideration of H.R. 10 (H. Res. 403). On March 31, 1998, the 
House began consideration of H. Res. 403, but did not complete 
action thereon. Subsequently the resolution was withdrawn from 
further consideration. On April 1, 1998, by unanimous consent, 
H. Res. 403 was laid on the table.
    On May 12, 1998, the Rules Committee met and granted a 
second rule providing for the consideration of H.R. 10 (H. Res. 
428). On May 13, 1998, the House passed H. Res. 428 by a roll 
call vote of 311 yeas to 105 nays. The House then considered 
H.R. 10 on May 13, 1998, and passed the bill, amended, by a 
roll call vote of 214 yeas to 213 nays.
    H.R. 10 was received in the Senate on May 14, 1998, and 
referred to the Senate Committee on Banking, Housing, and Urban 
Affairs. On September 11, 1998, the Senate Committee on 
Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs considered H.R. 10 and 
ordered the bill reported to the Senate, amended. On September 
18, 1998, the Senate Committee on Banking, Housing, and Urban 
Affairs reported H.R. 10 to the Senate (S. Rpt. 105-336). After 
invoking cloture on October 5, 1998, and agreeing, on October 
7, 1998, to a motion to proceed to the consideration of H.R. 
10, the Senate considered H.R. 10 on October 8, and October 9, 
1998, but did not complete action thereon. No further action 
was taken by the Senate on H.R. 10 in the 105th Congress.

               collections of information antipiracy act

                         (H.R. 2652, H.R. 2281)

    To amend title 17, United States Code, to prevent the 
misappropriation of collections of information.

Summary

    H.R. 2652 provides new protections for collections of 
information against misappropriation. The bill prohibits the 
misappropriation of commercially valuable collections of 
information by those who pirate data collected by others and 
use it in a way that causes market injury to the producer of 
the original collection.
    The bill extends its protections to information collected 
by stock exchanges and contract markets, notwithstanding an 
exclusion in the bill that prevented the bill from applying to 
information gathered, organized, or maintained by or for a 
government entity.
    However, the bill explicitly preserves the authority 
currently held by the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) 
to regulate the gathering and dissemination of stock market 
information by stock markets, including the SEC's authority 
over the fee structure used by stock markets in disseminating 
that information to the public. H.R. 2652 provides a similar 
preservation of authority for the Commodity Futures Trading 
Commission (CFTC) over the gathering and dissemination of 
information about contract markets under its jurisdiction.
    Accordingly, the bill preserves the ability of the SEC and 
the CFTC to alter the mechanism or payment structure by which 
market data is disseminated to the public.

Legslative History

    H.R. 2652 was introduced in the House by Mr. Coble on 
October 9, 1997. The bill was referred solely to the Committee 
on the Judiciary.
    On March 24, 1998, the Committee on the Judiciary ordered 
H.R. 2652 reported to the House, amended, by a voice vote. The 
Committee on the Judiciary reported H.R. 2652 to the House on 
May 12, 1998 (H. Rpt. 105-525).
    On May 19, 1998, the Chairman of the Committee on Commerce 
sent a letter to the Chairman of the Committee on the Judiciary 
indicating that Section 1204(a) and Section 1205(f) included 
provisions within the jurisdiction of the Commerce Committee. 
The Chairman further stated that the Committee on Commerce had 
reviewed the action taken by the Judiciary Committee and, in 
order to expedite consideration of this measure by the House, 
the Committee on Commerce would not seek a sequential referral 
of H.R. 2652, provided such action would not prejudice the 
Commerce Committee's future jurisdictional interests in the 
legislation.
    The House considered H.R. 2652 under Suspension of the 
Rules on May 19, 1998, and passed the bill by a voice vote. 
H.R. 2652 was received in the Senate on May 20, 1998, read 
twice, and referred to the Senate Committee on the Judiciary. 
No further action was taken on H.R. 2652 in the 105th Congress 
by the Senate.
    On August 4, 1998, during the House consideration of H.R. 
2281, the Digital Millennium Copyright Act of 1998, under 
Suspension of the Rules, a Manager's Amendment was offered 
which added a new Title V to the bill which included provisions 
of H.R. 2652 as passed by the House. H.R. 2281 subsequently 
passed the House, as amended, by a voice vote. During the 
House-Senate conference on H.R. 2281, the conferees deleted 
Title V from the bill. For the legislative history of H.R. 
2281, see the discussion of the Digital Millennium Copyright 
Act of 1998 under the Telecommunications, Trade, and Consumer 
Protection Subcommittee section.

           financial contract netting improvement act of 1998

                              (H.R. 4393)

    To revise the banking and bankruptcy insolvency laws with 
respect to the termination and netting of financial contracts, 
and for other purposes.

Summary

    H.R. 4393, the Financial Contract Netting Improvement Act 
of 1998, amends the Bankruptcy Code, banking statutes, and 
securities laws to clarify the treatment of financial contracts 
upon the insolvency of one of the parties to the transaction. 
In the event of the bankruptcy of a party to a swap or other 
financial contract, parties can enforce their rights to 
terminate the contract or to offset, or ``net'', their various 
contractual obligations.

Legslative History

    H.R. 4393 was introduced in the House by Representatives 
Leach and LaFalce on August 4, 1998. The bill was referred to 
the Committee on Banking and Financial Services, and in 
addition to the Committee on Commerce and the Committee on the 
Judiciary.
    On August 5, 1998, the Committee on Banking and Financial 
Services considered H.R. 4393 and ordered the bill reported to 
the House by a voice vote. On August 21, 1998, the Committee on 
Banking and Financial Services reported H.R. 4393 to the House 
(H. Rpt. 105-688). On August 21, 1998, the referral of the bill 
to the Committee on the Judiciary was extended for a period 
ending not later than September 25, 1998.
    In the interest of allowing the legislation to move 
forward, the Chairman of the Committee on Commerce sent a 
letter to the Speaker of the House agreeing to have the 
Commerce Committee discharged from further consideration of 
H.R. 4393. The letter further stated that, while the Committee 
on Commerce had no substantive problems with the legislation, 
the Committee on Commerce was not waiving its jurisdictional 
interest in the H.R. 4393 or any similar legislation. 
Subsequently, on August 21, 1998, the Committee on Commerce was 
discharged from further consideration of H.R. 4393.
    On September 25, 1998, the Committee on the Judiciary also 
was discharged from further consideration of H.R. 4393. No 
further action was taken on this legislation during the 105th 
Congress.

               financial information privacy act of 1998

                              (H.R. 4321)

    To protect consumers and financial institutions by 
preventing personal financial information from being obtained 
from financial institutions under false pretenses.

Summary

    The purpose of H.R. 4321 is to protect consumers and 
financial institutions by preventing personal confidential 
information from being obtained from financial institutions 
under false pretenses. H.R. 4321 achieves this goal by 
increasing the penalties for fraudulent information gathering, 
enhancing the ability of Federal and State enforcement agencies 
to prosecute such fraudulent activities, and expanding the 
ability of injured consumers and financial institutions to 
obtain restitution for their losses.
    As reported by the Committee on Commerce, H.R. 4321 makes 
it a violation of Federal law to attempt to obtain, or cause to 
be disclosed, customer information of a financial institution 
by making fraudulent representations or by using documents that 
are forged or improperly obtained or that contain false 
statements. H.R. 4321 also makes it a violation to request that 
another person obtain a consumer's confidential financial 
information knowing that the attempt to obtain such information 
would be done in a fraudulent manner. These prohibitions are 
intended to prevent companies and individuals from deceiving 
financial institutions into providing confidential customer 
information.

Legslative History

    H.R. 4321 was introduced in the House on July 23, 1998, by 
Mr. Leach and five cosponsors. The bill was referred solely to 
the Committee on Banking and Financial Services.
    On August 5, 1998, the Committee on Banking and Financial 
Services considered H.R. 4321 and ordered the bill reported to 
the House, amended, by a voice vote. On August 21, 1998, the 
Committee on Banking and Financial Services reported H.R. 4321 
to the House (H. Rpt. 105-701, Part 1). On August 21, 1998, 
H.R. 4321 was referred to the Committee on the Judiciary, 
sequentially, for a period ending not later than September 25, 
1998. On September 14, 1998, H.R. 4321 was referred to the 
Committee on Commerce, sequentially, for a period ending not 
later than September 25, 1998.
    Because of the severe time constraints of the Committee on 
Commerce's sequential referral, there were no hearings held on 
this legislation by the Committee on Commerce or its 
subcommittees. On September 24, 1998, the Full Committee met in 
an open mark up session to consider H.R. 4321 and ordered the 
bill reported to the House, amended, by a voice vote, a quorum 
being present. On September 25, 1998, the Committee on Commerce 
reported H.R. 4321 to the House (H. Rpt. 105-701, Part 2). On 
September 25, 1998, the Committee on the Judiciary was 
discharged from further consideration of H.R. 4321.
    No further action occurred on H.R. 4321 in the 105th 
Congress.

                 common cents stock pricing act of 1997

                              (H.R. 1053)

    To amend the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 to eliminate 
legal impediments to quotation in decimals for securities 
transactions in order to protect investors and to promote 
efficiency, competition, and capital formation.

Summary

    H.R. 1053 directs the Securities and Exchange Commission 
(SEC) to use its authority to direct U.S. equity exchanges to 
eliminate the existing government-sanctioned system of 
mandatory trading in fractions and replace it with trading in 
decimals. The bill leaves questions such as the timing, 
implementation and applicable spread to be determined by the 
SEC in the rulemaking process. This process includes the 
release of a draft rule and opportunity for affected entities 
to participate through the comment process.

Legslative History

    H.R. 1053 was introduced in the House by Mr. Oxley and 
eight cosponsors on March 13, 1997. The bill was referred 
solely to the Committee on Commerce.
    The Subcommittee on Finance and Hazardous Materials held 
two hearings on the legislation on April 10, 1997, and April 
16, 1997. Twenty-seven witnesses testified at the hearings. 
Witnesses included representatives of American and Canadian 
stock exchanges, mutual funds, State and municipal pensions, 
State securities regulators, an SEC Commissioner, industry 
participants, representatives of the trade unions, and academic 
experts.
    On May 21, 1997, the Subcommittee on Finance and Hazardous 
Materials met in open markup session and approved H.R. 1053 for 
Full Committee consideration, without amendment, by a voice 
vote.
    Following the Subcommittee's approval of H.R. 1053, the New 
York Stock Exchange and NASDAQ publicly announced their 
intention to move voluntarily to a decimal-based pricing system 
for stocks. As a result of the voluntary action to switch to a 
decimal-based pricing system, no further legislative action was 
taken on H.R. 1053 by the Committee on Commerce in the 105th 
Congress. However, the Subcommittee on Finance and Hazardous 
Materials did hold an oversight hearing on the industry's 
implementation of decimal pricing on May 8, 1998. For further 
information, see the discussion of Industry Implementation of 
Decimal Pricing under Oversight or Investigative Activities in 
this section.

                      superfund reform act of 1997

                              (H.R. 3000)

    To amend the Comprehensive Environmental Response, 
Compensation, and Liability Act of 1980.

Summary

    This legislation reauthorizes the Comprehensive 
Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act of 1980 
(CERCLA, or Superfund) for a period of five years. The bill 
also makes a number of significant changes in the Superfund 
program for cleanups and restorations, which are intended by 
its sponsors to do the following: speed their pace and quality; 
reduce their transaction and cleanup costs; increase fairness 
in Superfund liability; provide for program delegation to the 
States; expand public participation in the cleanup process; and 
protect human health and the environment.

              Remedy Selection and Community Participation

    Title I of H.R. 3000 establishes risk assessment 
principles; makes a number of changes to the manner in which 
the President selects remedial alternatives and final remedies 
at Superfund sites; provides for the establishment of Community 
Assistance Groups; addresses the information to be maintained 
by the Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry 
(ATSDR); provides for the distribution of information on 
hazardous substances to health professionals and medical 
centers; changes provisions related to cooperative agreements 
between the ATSDR and the States; increases dollar limits and 
time limits for removal actions; authorizes the President to 
acquire hazardous substance easements; amends provisions 
regarding judicial review of remedies; and provides transition 
rules and establishes the effective date of the title as the 
date of enactment.

                               Liability

    This title clarifies liability for, provides exemptions 
from, and provides for reimbursements for costs relating to 
Superfund liability for various parties; sets forth procedures 
for allocating liability among parties; places limitations on 
contribution actions; modifies settlement authorities and the 
President's authority to provide final covenants; and sets 
forth confidentiality requirements.

                   Brownfields and Voluntary Cleanups

    The title makes findings with respect to State voluntary 
response programs and provides for technical and other 
assistance to States for voluntary response programs; clarifies 
liability for bona fide prospective purchasers and innocent 
landowners; and addresses Federal enforcement at sites cleaned 
up under State programs.

                        Natural Resource Damages

    This title makes various changes to liability for, 
determination of, and litigation of natural resource damages.

                               State Role

    This title authorizes the Environmental Protection Agency 
(EPA) to delegate various Superfund authorities to the States 
for actions at facilities listed on the National Priorities 
List (NPL); alters the provisions for State cost share; and 
requires a Governor's concurrence with respect to new NPL 
listings.

                           Federal Facilities

    This title amends provisions with respect to the role of 
States at Federal facilities.

                             Miscellaneous

    This title makes various definitional changes; amends 
response claim procedures; requires the EPA to establish a 
small business Superfund assistance office within the small 
business ombudsman office; requires the EPA to give higher 
priority to remedial actions for which State and local 
governments have made demonstrations of public benefit; 
requires that EPA report annually to Governors on the progress 
of the program; and amends the authority of the President to 
dispose of real property acquired under subsection 104(j).

                                Funding

    Title X reauthorizes the dedicated taxes, the Superfund 
Trust Fund, and appropriations from general revenues for Fiscal 
Years 1996 through 2000. It requires that funds collected from 
the dedicated Superfund taxes be used only for cleanup and 
remediation expenses.

Legslative History

    The Subcommittee on Finance and Hazardous Materials held 
four days of oversight hearings related to the reauthorization 
of the Superfund program addressing major concerns with the 
program.
    The Subcommittee on Finance and Hazardous Materials held 
two oversight hearings on Federal barriers to the cleanup of 
contaminated sites on February 14, 1997, in Columbus, Ohio, and 
on March 7, 1997, in New York City, New York. Testimony was 
received from representatives of the Environmental Protection 
Agency, as well as representatives of the States of Ohio and 
New York, local officials from Columbus, Ohio, and New York 
City, and representatives of community groups, businesses, and 
the environmental community. The Subcommittee on Finance and 
Hazardous Materials held an oversight hearing on the operation 
of the Superfund program on September 4, 1997, receiving 
testimony from 23 Members of Congress, and receiving material 
for the record from an additional nine Members of Congress. The 
Subcommittee on Finance and Hazardous Materials held an 
oversight hearing on the Status of the Superfund program on 
February 4, 1998. Testimony was received from representatives 
of the Environmental Protection Agency and the General 
Accounting Office, as well as other witnesses.
    On November 9, 1997, Mr. Oxley and thirty-four cosponsors 
introduced H.R. 3000, the Superfund Reform Act of 1997. The 
bill was referred to the Committee on Commerce, and in addition 
to the Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure and the 
Committee on Ways and Means. Within the Committee on Commerce, 
the bill was referred to the Subcommittee on Finance and 
Hazardous Materials.
    The Subcommittee on Finance and Hazardous Materials held 
two legislative hearings on H.R. 3000 on March 5, 1998, and 
March 26, 1998, receiving testimony from representatives of the 
Administration, States, local governments, citizens groups, 
industry, small businesses, the environmental community, and 
others.
    Despite bipartisan negotiations with the Administration 
during the 105th Congress, no agreement was reached and no 
further action was taken on H.R. 3000.

                     auto choice reform act of 1997

                              (H.R. 2021)

    To provide for competition between forms of motor vehicle 
insurance, to permit an owner of a motor vehicle to choose the 
most appropriate form of insurance for that person, to 
guarantee affordable premiums, to provide for more adequate and 
timely compensation for accident victims, and for other 
purposes.

Summary

    H.R. 2021 allows consumers to choose between their current 
coverage options in their States and a new ``Personal 
Protection Insurance'' (PPI) Federal option. A consumer who 
chooses PPI would not be compensated for non-economic losses 
(``pain and suffering'' damages). A consumer who chooses to 
keep his traditional auto insurance coverage could still sue 
for non-economic damages as allowed under current law, but only 
if the accident is with another non-PPI driver. If a PPI-
insured driver hits a traditional-coverage driver, then the 
traditional-coverage driver could still recover non-economic 
damages, but only from his or her own insurer. Fault based 
recovery is retained in drunk driving and intentional 
misconduct cases, and States are allowed to opt-out of the new 
regime, either by statute or by determining that auto personal 
injury premiums would not decline by at least 30 percent for 
PPI customers.

Legslative History

    On June 24, 1997, Mr. Armey and four cosponsors introduced 
H.R. 2021, the Auto Choice Reform Act of 1997, in the House. 
The bill was referred solely to the Committee on Commerce.
    The Subcommittee on Finance and Hazardous Materials held a 
legislative hearing on H.R. 2021 on May 20, 1998. Testimony was 
received from two of the bill's sponsors, Representatives Armey 
and Moran, as well as from a law professor, a prosecutor, a 
convicted automobile insurance scam artist, and various 
consumer experts on no-fault automobile insurance.
    No further action was taken on H.R. 2021 in the 105th 
Congress.

                 Oversight or Investigative Activities

               federal barriers to common sense cleanups

    The Subcommittee on Finance and Hazardous Materials held 
two field hearings on Federal Barriers to Common Sense 
Cleanups. These hearings provided Members of the Subcommittee 
information regarding the under-used industrial and commercial 
facilities (brownfields) where expansion or redevelopment is 
complicated by real or perceived environmental contamination.
    The first Subcommittee field hearing was held on February 
14, 1997, in Columbus, Ohio. Witnesses included representatives 
of the Ohio Environmental Protection Agency, the Mayor of the 
City of Columbus, industry representatives, and academic 
experts.
    On March 7, 1997, the Subcommittee on Finance and Hazardous 
Materials held a second field hearing on Federal Barriers to 
Common Sense Cleanups in New York City, New York. Witnesses 
included the Mayor of New York City, representatives of the 
United States Environmental Protection Agency, the N.Y. 
Department of Environmental Conservation, and the environmental 
community, and industry representatives.

                       financial services reform

    On May 1, May 14, and June 24, 1997, the Subcommittee on 
Finance and Hazardous Materials held oversight hearings on the 
financial services industry modernization. The Subcommittee 
received testimony from former SEC commissioners, former 
banking regulators, State insurance regulators, academic 
experts, and representatives of private business interests. The 
hearings focused on the current regulatory structure for the 
securities, insurance, and banking industries; the need for 
modernization; the barriers to increased competition; and the 
impact of modernization on consumers and taxpayers.
    On May 1, 1997, the Subcommittee received testimony that 
addressed the ``two way street''--the ability of financial 
entities to compete with each other without disparity. The 
Subcommittee examined the ability of different financial 
service providers to offer the same services without disparate 
regulatory treatment. The testimony received focused on the 
impact of any disparate treatment on competition and on 
consumer and investor protections.
    On May 14, 1997, the Subcommittee on Finance and Hazardous 
Materials examined the impact of mergers and acquisitions 
within the financial services industry. Testimony focused on 
the efficiencies of consolidation and affiliations, competitive 
disparity and advantages gained by entities able to merge over 
financial service firms unable or prohibited from certain 
mergers, and the impact of recent mergers on legislative 
efforts to modernize the financial services industry.
    The Subcommittee received testimony on insurance regulation 
at the June 24, 1997, hearing. Specifically, the hearing 
focused on the impact of bank insurance sales regulation on 
consumer protections and the implications of bank insurance 
sales powers on competition in the insurance industry. 
Testimony also addressed issues of uniform State licensing for 
insurance brokers, State demutualization laws, and State 
redomestication laws.

                   operation of the superfund program

    On September 4, 1997, the Subcommittee on Finance and 
Hazardous Materials held a hearing on the Operation of the 
Superfund Program. Twenty-three Members of Congress testified 
before the Subcommittee on how the Superfund Program is 
working, or not working, as the case may be, in their 
Districts. An additional nine Members of Congress submitted 
material for the record on the operation of the Superfund 
Program.

implementation of the private securities litigation reform act of 1995 
                          (public law 104-67)

    The Subcommittee on Finance and Hazardous Materials held an 
oversight hearing on October 21, 1997, on the Implementation of 
the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act (Public Law 104-
67). The Subcommittee received testimony from the Chairman of 
the Securities and Exchange Commission and representatives of a 
municipal finance association, academics, and private business 
groups.
    Public Law 104-67 was enacted in the 104th Congress on 
December 22, 1995. The purpose of the hearing was to determine 
whether or not the law was working as intended by the Congress. 
Specifically, the hearing focused on the effect the law was 
having on the number of class action ``strike'' suits being 
filed and whether the protections provided by the law were 
being used. Testimony received by the Subcommittee was 
universal regarding the lack of use of the safe harbor provided 
by the Reform Act. Testimony varied on the effectiveness of the 
law with respect to curbing strike suits. Arguments were made 
that not enough time had passed to determine the whether State 
courts were being used to circumvent the Federal law.
    For additional information on securities litigation reform, 
see the discussion of H.R. 1689, the Securities Litigation 
Uniform Standards Act, under Legislative Activities in this 
section.

                    status of the superfund program

    On February 4, 1998, the Subcommittee on Finance and 
Hazardous Materials held an oversight hearing on the Status of 
the Superfund Program. Testimony was received from 
representatives of the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) 
and the General Accounting Office (GAO), as well as outside 
experts. The hearing focused on the pace of cleanup at National 
Priorities List (NPL) sites. According to a March 1997 GAO 
study (Times to Complete the Assessment and Cleanup of 
Hazardous Waste Sites, United States General Accounting Office, 
March, 1997, GAO/RCED-97-20) and a September 1997 follow-up 
report, it takes an average of 9.4 years from the time a ``non-
federal'' site (generally, a site not owned or operated by the 
Federal government) is discovered until the time it is listed 
on the NPL. The study also determined that the cleanup time for 
non-Federal projects completed in 1996 was 10.6 years. A 
witness representing the EPA sharply disagreed with the 
methodology and conclusions of the GAO. The EPA testified that 
the agency has cut more than two years off the time it takes to 
clean up a Superfund site and identified more than 85 sites 
that were listed on the Superfund NPL in the 1990s where 
construction was completed in less than five years.

               industry implementation of decimal pricing

    During the First Session of the 105th Congress, the 
Subcommittee on Finance and Hazardous Materials considered H.R. 
1053, the Common Cents Stock Pricing Act of 1997, a bill 
directing the Securities and Exchange Commission to use its 
authority to direct U.S. equity exchanges to eliminate the 
existing government-sanctioned system of mandatory trading in 
fractions and replace it with trading in decimals. The 
Subcommittee held a legislative hearing on the bill, marked it 
up, and approved H.R. 1053 for Full Committee consideration. 
After the Subcommittee markup occurred, the New York Stock 
Exchange and NASDAQ publicly announced their intention to 
voluntarily move to a decimal-based pricing system for stocks. 
As a result of the voluntary action to switch to a decimal-
based pricing system, no further legislative action was taken 
on H.R. 1053 by the Committee on Commerce in the 105th 
Congress. For further information on H.R. 1053, see the 
discussion of Common Cents Stock Pricing Act of 1997 under 
Legislative Activities in this section.
    Following the announcement by the New York Stock Exchange 
and NASDAQ, others in the securities industry complained that 
they were not ready to convert to decimal pricing. The 
Subcommittee requested the General Accounting Office (GAO) to 
conduct a study on the progress and readiness of the securities 
industry to convert to decimal pricing for equities in order to 
determine what barriers were causing delay to a timely 
conversion.
    On May 8, 1998, the Subcommittee on Finance and Hazardous 
Materials held an oversight hearing on the implementation of 
decimal pricing conversion on the U.S. equity exchanges. The 
hearing focused specifically on the findings of the GAO and 
representatives of the GAO were the only witnesses. The 
Subcommittee received testimony that the pending Year 2000 
conversions the securities industry is undergoing was cited by 
industry as the reason for delay of implementation until after 
the Year 2000 problem is resolved.
    The Subcommittee will continue to monitor the schedule for 
successful implementation of decimal pricing conversion and 
fully expects the conversion to occur by the middle of the year 
2000.

                     electronic commerce initiative

    The Subcommittee on Finance and Hazardous Materials held 
two hearings as part of the Committee's electronic commerce 
initiative. On June 4, 1998, the Subcommittee on Finance and 
Hazardous Materials held a hearing on Electronic Commerce: New 
Methods for Making Electronic Purchases, which focused on 
methods of electronic payments. The hearing examined 
technologies to allow payment to be accepted over the Internet, 
ensuring security and authenticity in electronic payments and 
the role of electronic payments in promoting electronic 
commerce. Additionally, testimony focused on impediments to the 
development and acceptance of alternative payment systems. 
Witnesses included the Honorable Roger Ferguson, Jr., Member of 
the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System, and 
representatives of companies that provide computer software to 
enable electronic payments and companies that accept electronic 
payments on-line.
    On June 18, 1998, the Subcommittee on Finance and Hazardous 
Materials held a hearing on Electronic Commerce: Investing On-
Line, which focused on the growing on-line securities trading 
industry. The hearing examined the growth of on-line security 
trading, its impact on the market structure, and investor 
protection issues associated with new mediums used to conduct 
securities transactions. The hearing also included an on-line 
demonstration of stock trading, the first electronic commerce 
demonstration to occur before a Congressional committee. 
Witnesses included representatives of the brokerage and 
securities trading industry and industry observers.
    The Subcommittee plans work with the Full Committee in the 
106th Congress to develop a coordinated effort to determine 
what actions Congress can take to improve the progress and 
development of electronic commerce.

  enhancing retirement security through individual investment choices

    The Subcommittee on Finance and Hazardous Materials held an 
oversight hearing on Enhancing Retirement Security Through 
Individual Investment Choices on July 24, 1998. Testimony was 
received from academic experts and representatives of private 
business groups.
    Specifically, the hearing focused on increasing the rate of 
return of Social Security taxes through private investment 
vehicles such as mutual funds. The funding problems the current 
Social Security structure will face in the near future have 
generated great interest in making changes to the system. Many 
of the proposals have included various degrees of privatization 
similar to the models that have been implemented in other 
countries during the past decade.
    The Subcommittee received testimony on the ability of 
individual investors to make personal investment choices. 
Arguments were made that the increasing proportion of American 
workers that invest through IRAs and employee sponsored 
retirement plans, such as 401(k) plans, is an indication that 
Americans are able and willing to acquire the knowledge 
necessary to invest in our capital markets. Other testimony 
demonstrated the greater historical rate of return of the stock 
market compared to the lower, and in some cases negative, rate 
of return for Social Security. Concerns were also raised about 
the need to ensure adequate consumer protections in the event 
of any privitization.
    Because most privatization models contemplate investing in 
the capital markets, the Subcommittee plans to closely monitor 
and, if necessary, assert jurisdiction with respect to 
legislation that would affect the capital markets or Federal 
securities regulation.

    the impact and effectiveness of the small order execution system

    On August 3, 1998, the Subcommittee on Finance and 
Hazardous Materials held an oversight hearing on The Impact and 
Effectiveness of the Small Order Execution System (SOES). The 
hearing focused on how the system impacts market liquidity and 
addressed the need for any changes to the system. The 
Subcommittee received testimony from academic experts, market 
makers, and representatives of SOES firms.
    Specifically, testimony addressed whether the ability of 
investors to get automatic execution of their stock orders, as 
originally intended, is being fulfilled, or if the current use 
of the system is an abuse that negatively affects liquidity. 
SOES is currently utilized primarily by individuals who use 
their own capital in an attempt to profit from quick trades. 
Arguments were made, both pro and con, over the impact on 
liquidity of these trades.
    The Securities and Exchange Commission implemented several 
rule changes in 1998 to address many of these concerns. The 
Subcommittee will monitor the impact of the rule changes in the 
106th Congress to determine if further action is required.

         improving price competition for mutual funds and bonds

    On September 29, 1998, the Subcommittee held a hearing on 
Improving Price Competition for Mutual Funds and Bonds. 
Specifically, the hearing examined: (1) the ability of 
investors to assess the costs accurately, and their effect on 
the rate of return, of mutual funds as an investment; and (2) 
the ability of investors to get accurate and fair price 
information for the purchase and sale of bonds. The witnesses 
represented Federal securities regulators, academia, mutual 
fund companies, investment advisers, bond traders, municipal 
bond issuers, and industry trade groups.
    The mutual fund industry is a highly regulated industry 
that assesses fees on investors to cover operational expenses 
and to make a profit. Fees typically cover expenses such as 
marketing and advertising, professional management, and 
transaction fees for trading shares in its portfolio. While the 
mutual fund industry is capped on the fee level it can charge 
as a percentage of assets under management, the fee rates run 
the gamut. The Subcommittee sought to determine whether 
improved disclosure would increase the competition among fund 
providers to the benefit of investors. The Subcommittee 
received testimony that indicates that investor education is 
the largest barrier to creating a more competitive environment 
for mutual funds based on fees. Evidence suggests that educated 
investors do use cost as a determinant in their investment 
selection process and have migrated to fund companies that 
offer the lowest fees.
    The bond markets are an important means by which private 
companies and State and local governments can raise money on 
terms and with interest rates more favorable than those offered 
by banks. The level of oversight and transparency in the bond 
market, particularly the corporate and municipal market, is 
substantially less than that in the U.S. equity markets. In the 
corporate and municipal market, dealers do not report the 
prices at which they sell bonds. This lack of ``last sale 
reporting'' makes it difficult for investors to determine if 
they are paying the best price for a bond. It also makes it 
difficult for them to value their portfolios with precision. 
The Subcommittee received testimony that indicates progress has 
been made in the price reporting for government bonds, but 
trails for the corporate and municipal bond market. Industry 
participants presented testimony that last sale price reporting 
is not cost effective or as accurate for current pricing as are 
yield, term, interest rate, and other economic factors.
    The Subcommittee will continue to pursue this issue in the 
106th Congress with a goal of increasing price transparency.

                             Hearings Held

    Federal Barriers to Common Sense Cleanups.--Oversight Field 
Hearing in Columbus, Ohio, on Federal Barriers to Common Sense 
Cleanups. Hearing held on February 14, 1997. PRINTED, Serial 
Number 105-6.
    The Securities and Exchange Commission Authorization Act of 
1997.--Hearing on H.R. ---- (an unintroduced bill), the 
Securities and Exchange Commission Authorization Act of 1997. 
Hearing held on March 6, 1997. PRINTED, Serial Number 105-12.
    Federal Barriers to Common Sense Cleanups.--Oversight Field 
Hearing in New York City, New York, on Federal Barriers to 
Common Sense Cleanups. Hearing held on March 7, 1997. PRINTED, 
Serial Number 105-6.
    Leaking Underground Storage Tank Trust Fund Amendments Act 
of 1997.--Hearing on H.R. 688, the Leaking Underground Storage 
Tank Trust Fund Amendments Act of 1997. Hearing held on March 
20, 1997. PRINTED, Serial Number 105-9.
    The Common Cents Stock Pricing Act of 1997.--Hearing on 
H.R. 1053, the Common Cents Stock Pricing Act of 1997. Hearing 
held on April 10, 1997. PRINTED, Serial Number 105-18.
    The Common Cents Stock Pricing Act of 1997.--Hearing on 
H.R. 1053, the Common Cents Stock Pricing Act of 1997. Hearing 
held on April 16, 1997. PRINTED, Serial Number 105-18.
    Financial Services Reform.--Oversight Hearing on ``A Two 
Way Street'' and Functional Regulation. Hearing held on May 1, 
1997. PRINTED, Serial Number 105-34.
    Financial Services Reform.--Oversight Hearing on 
Consolidation in the Brokerage Industry. Hearing held on May 
14, 1997. PRINTED, Serial Number 105-34.
    Financial Services Reform.--Oversight Hearing on Insurance 
Regulation. Hearing held on June 24, 1997. PRINTED, Serial 
Number 105-34.
    The Financial Services Competitiveness Act of 1997.--
Hearing on H.R. 10, the Financial Services Competitiveness Act 
of 1997. Hearing held on July 17, 1997. PRINTED, Serial Number 
105-38.
    The Financial Services Competitiveness Act of 1997.--
Hearing on H.R. 10, the Financial Services Competitiveness Act 
of 1997. Hearing held on July 25, 1997. PRINTED, Serial Number 
105-38.
    The Financial Services Competitiveness Act of 1997.--
Hearing on H.R. 10, the Financial Services Competitiveness Act 
of 1997. Hearing held on July 30, 1997. PRINTED, Serial Number 
105-38.
    Operation of the Superfund Program.--Oversight Hearing on 
the Operation of the Superfund Program. Hearing held on 
September 4, 1997. PRINTED, Serial Number 105-41.
    Implementation of the Private Securities Litigation Reform 
Act of 1995.--Oversight Hearing on the Implementation of the 
Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995 (Public Law 104-67). 
Hearing held on October 21, 1997. PRINTED, Serial Number 105-
59.
    Status of the Superfund Program.--Oversight Hearing on the 
Status of the Superfund Program. Hearing held on February 4, 
1998. PRINTED, Serial Number 105-92.
    The Superfund Reform Act.--Hearing on H.R. 3000, the 
Superfund Reform Act. Hearing held on March 5, 1998. PRINTED, 
Serial Number 105-78.
    The Superfund Reform Act--Addendum.--Hearing on H.R. 3000, 
the Superfund Reform Act. Hearing held on March 5, 1998. 
PRINTED, Serial Number 105-78.
    The Superfund Reform Act.--Hearing on H.R. 3000, the 
Superfund Reform Act. Hearing held on March 26, 1998. PRINTED, 
Serial Number 105-78.
    The Superfund Reform Act--Addendum.--Hearing on H.R. 3000, 
the Superfund Reform Act. Hearing held on March 26, 1998. 
PRINTED, Serial Number 105-78.
    Industry Implementation of Decimal Pricing.--Oversight 
Hearing on Industry Implementation of Decimal Pricing. Hearing 
held on May 8, 1998. PRINTED, Serial Number 105-84.
    The Securities Litigation Uniform Standards Act of 1997.--
Hearing on H.R. 1689, the Securities Litigation Uniform 
Standards Act of 1997. Hearing held on May 19, 1998. PRINTED, 
Serial Number 105-85.
    The Auto Choice Reform Act of 1997.--Hearing on H.R. 2021, 
the Auto Choice Reform Act of 1997. Hearing held on May 20, 
1998. PRINTED, Serial Number 105-86.
    Electronic Commerce--Part 2.--Oversight Hearing on 
Electronic Commerce: New Methods for Making Electronic 
Purchases. Hearing held on June 4, 1998. PRINTED, Serial Number 
105-112.
    Electronic Commerce--Part 2.--Oversight Hearing on 
Electronic Commerce: Investing Online. Hearing held on June 18, 
1998. PRINTED, Serial Number 105-112.
    Enhancing Retirement Through Individual Investment 
Choices.--Oversight Hearing on Enhancing Retirement Security 
Through Individual Investment Choices. Hearing held on July 24, 
1998. PRINTED, Serial Number 105-105.
    The Impact and Effectiveness of the Small Order Execution 
System.--Oversight Hearing on The Impact and Effectiveness of 
the Small Order Execution System. Hearing held on August 3, 
1998. PRINTED, Serial Number 105-103.
    International Anti-Bribery and Fair Competition Act of 
1998.--Hearing on H.R. 4353, the International Anti-Bribery and 
Fair Competition Act of 1998. Hearing held on September 10, 
1998. PRINTED, Serial Number 105-141.
    Improving Price Competition for Mutual Funds and Bonds.--
Oversight Hearing on Improving Price Competition for Mutual 
Funds and Bonds. Hearing held on September 29, 1998. PRINTED, 
Serial Number 105-130.


                 Subcommittee on Health and Environment

                             (Ratio 16-13)

                  MICHAEL BILIRAKIS, Florida, Chairman

J. DENNIS HASTERT, Illinois          SHERROD BROWN, Ohio
  Vice Chairman                      HENRY A. WAXMAN, California
JOE BARTON, Texas                    EDOLPHUS TOWNS, New York
FRED UPTON, Michigan                 FRANK PALLONE, Jr., New Jersey
JAMES C. GREENWOOD, Pennsylvania     PETER DEUTSCH, Florida
CLIFF STEARNS, Florida               ANNA G. ESHOO, California
NATHAN DEAL, Georgia                 BART STUPAK, Michigan
RICHARD BURR, North Carolina         GENE GREEN, Texas
BRIAN P. BILBRAY, California         TED STRICKLAND, Ohio
ED WHITFIELD, Kentucky               DIANA DeGETTE, Colorado
GREG GANSKE, Iowa                    RALPH M. HALL, Texas
CHARLIE NORWOOD, Georgia             ELIZABETH FURSE, Oregon
TOM COBURN, Oklahoma                 JOHN D. DINGELL, Michigan
RICK LAZIO, New York                   (Ex Officio)
BARBARA CUBIN, Wyoming
TOM BLILEY, Virginia
  (Ex Officio)

Jurisdiction: Public health and quarantine; hospital construction; 
mental health and research; biomedical programs and health protection 
in general, including Medicaid and national health insurance; food and 
drugs; drug abuse; and Clean Air Act and environmental protection in 
general, including the Safe Drinking Water Act.

                         Legislative Activities

            assisted suicide funding restriction act of 1997

                     Public Law 105-12 (H.R. 1003)

    To clarify Federal law with respect to restricting the use 
of Federal funds in support of assisted suicide

Summary

    H.R. 1003, the Assisted Suicide Funding Restriction Act of 
1997, prohibits the use of appropriated funds to provide or pay 
for any health care item or service or health benefit coverage 
for the purpose of causing, or assisting to cause, the death of 
any individual. The bill sets forth a nonexclusive list of 
programs, facilities, and personnel to which the prohibition 
applies, including: (1) the Social Security Act, Title V 
(Maternal and Child Health Services), Title XVIII (Medicare), 
Title XIX (Medicaid), and Title XX (Block Grants to States for 
Social Services); (2) the Public Health Service Act; (3) the 
Indian Health Care Improvement Act; and (4) provisions of 
Federal law relating to Federal employees, the military health 
care system, veterans medical care, Peace Corps volunteers, and 
Federal prisoners.

Legislative History

    On March 6, 1997, the Subcommittee on Health and 
Environment held a hearing on Assisted Suicide: Legal, Medical, 
Ethical, and Social Issues. Witnesses included religious 
leaders, medical practitioners, medical ethicists, and 
representatives of the community of individuals with 
disabilities.
    H.R. 1003 was introduced in the House by Mr. Hall of Texas 
and 103 cosponsors on March 11, 1997. The bill was referred to 
the Committee on Commerce, and in addition to the Committee on 
Ways and Means, the Committee on the Judiciary, the Committee 
on Education and the Workforce, the Committee on Government 
Reform and Oversight, the Committee on Resources, and the 
Committee on International Relations, for a period ending not 
later than 30 calendar days after the Committee on Commerce 
reports to the House. Within the Committee on Commerce, the 
bill was referred to the Subcommittee on Health and 
Environment.
    On March 13, 1997, the Subcommittee on health and 
Environment met in open markup session and approved H.R. 1003, 
amended, for Full Committee consideration by a voice vote.
    The Full Committee met in open markup session on March 20, 
1997, to consider H.R. 1003 and ordered the bill reported to 
the House, as amended, by a roll call vote of 45 yeas to 2 
nays. The Committee on Commerce reported H.R. 1003 to the House 
on April 8, 1997 (H. Rpt. 105-46, Part 1).
    On April 8, 1997, the referral of H.R. 1003 to the 
Committee on Ways and Means, the Committee on the Judiciary, 
the Committee on Education and the Workforce, the Committee on 
Government Reform and Oversight, the Committee on Resources, 
and the Committee on International Relations was extended for a 
period ending not later than April 8, 1997. Subsequently, on 
April 8, 1997, the Committee on Ways and Means, the Committee 
on the Judiciary, the Committee on Education and the Workforce, 
the Committee on Government Reform and Oversight, the Committee 
on Resources, and the Committee on International Relations were 
discharged from further consideration of H.R. 1003.
    The House considered H.R. 1003 under Suspension of the 
Rules on April 10, 1997, and passed the bill, amended, by a 
roll call vote of 398 yeas to 16 nays.
    On April 10, 1997, H.R. 1003 was received in the Senate and 
read twice. On April 16, 1997, by unanimous consent, the Senate 
proceeded to the immediate consideration of H.R. 1003 and 
passed the bill, without amendment, by a roll call vote of 99 
yeas to 0 nays, clearing the measure for the President.
    H.R. 1003 was presented to the President on April 18, 1997. 
The President signed H.R. 1003 into law on April 30, 1997 
(Public Law 105-12).

                            propac extension

                     Public Law 105-13 (H.R. 1001)

    To extend the term of appointment of certain members of the 
Prospective Payment Assessment Commission and the Physician 
Payment Review Commission.

Summary

    H.R. 1001 extends until May 1, 1998, the term of 
appointment of a member of the Prospective Payment Assessment 
Commission or the Physician Payment Review Commission which 
would otherwise expire during 1997.

Legislative History

    H.R. 1001 was introduced in the House by Representatives 
Thomas and Bilirakis on March 10, 1997. The bill was referred 
to the Committee on Ways and Means, and in addition to the 
Committee on Commerce. Within the Committee on Commerce, the 
bill was referred to the Subcommittee on Health and 
Environment.
    The Committee on Ways and Means met in open markup session 
on April 9, 1997, to consider H.R. 1001 and ordered the bill 
reported to the House, without amendment, by a voice vote. The 
Committee on Ways and Means reported H.R. 1001 to the House on 
April 10, 1997 (H. Rpt. 105-49, Part 1). On April 10, 1997, the 
referral of H.R. 1001 to the Committee on Commerce was extended 
for a period ending not later than April 15, 1997.
    On March 12, 1997, the Subcommittee on Health and 
Environment met in open markup session and approved H.R. 1001, 
without amendment, for Full Committee consideration, by 
unanimous consent, a quorum being present.
    The Full Committee met in open markup session on March 13, 
1997, to consider H.R. 1001 and ordered the bill reported to 
the House, without amendment, by a voice vote, a quorum being 
present. The Committee on Commerce reported H.R. 1001 to the 
House on April 14, 1997 (H. Rpt. 105-49, Part 2).
    The House considered H.R. 1001 under Suspension of the 
Rules on April 15, 1997, and passed the bill, by a voice vote.
    On April 16, 1997, H.R. 1001 was received in the Senate and 
read twice. On April 30, 1997, by unanimous consent, the Senate 
proceeded to the immediate consideration of H.R. 1001 and 
passed the bill, without amendment, clearing the measure for 
the President.
    H.R. 1001 was presented to the President on May 2, 1997. 
The President signed H.R. 1001 into law on May 14, 1997 (Public 
Law 105-13).

   medicare and medicaid waiver for nurse aide training programs in 
                           certain facilities

                      Public Law 105-15 (H.R. 968)

    To amend title XVIII and XIX of the Social Security Act to 
permit a waiver of the prohibition of offering nurse aide 
training and competency evaluation programs in certain nursing 
facilities.

Summary

    H.R. 968 amends Title XVIII (Medicare) and Title XIX 
(Medicaid) of the Social Security Act to permit a waiver of the 
prohibition against offering nurse aide training and competency 
evaluation programs in certain facilities (including, for 
Medicare purposes, a skilled nursing facility). This measure 
permits a State to waive the current prohibition if the State: 
(1) determines that there is no other such program offered 
within a reasonable distance of the facility; (2) assures that 
an adequate environment exists for operating the program in the 
facility; and (3) provides notice of such determination to the 
State long-term care ombudsman.

Legislative History

    H.R. 968 was introduced in the House by Mr. Ehrlich and two 
cosponsors on March 6, 1997. The bill was referred to the 
Committee on Ways and Means, and in addition to the Committee 
on Commerce. Within the Committee on Commerce, the bill was 
referred to the Subcommittee on Health and Environment.
    The Committee on Ways and Means met on March 12, 1997, to 
consider H.R. 968 and ordered the bill reported to the House, 
amended, by a voice vote. The Committee on Ways and Means 
reported H.R. 968 to the House on March 13, 1997 (H. Rpt. 105-
23, Part 1). On March 13, 1997, the referral of H.R. 968 to the 
Committee on Commerce was extended for a period ending not 
later than March 18, 1997.
    On March 12, 1997, the Subcommittee on Health and 
Environment met in open markup session and approved H.R. 968, 
without amendment, for Full Committee consideration, by 
unanimous consent, a quorum being present.
    The Full Committee met in open markup session on March 13, 
1997, to consider H.R. 968 and ordered the bill reported to the 
House, without amendment, by a voice vote. The Committee on 
Commerce reported H.R. 968 to the House on March 18, 1997 (H. 
Rpt. 105-23, Part 2).
    The House considered H.R. 968 on the Corrections Calendar 
on April 8, 1997, and passed the bill, amended, by a voice 
vote.
    On April 9, 1997, H.R. 968 was received in the Senate, read 
twice, and referred to the Senate Committee on Finance. On 
April 30, 1997, by unanimous consent, the Senate Committee on 
Finance was discharged from further consideration of H.R. 968. 
By unanimous consent, the Senate then proceeded to the 
immediate consideration of H.R. 968 and passed the bill, 
without amendment, on April 30, 1997, clearing the measure for 
the President.
    H.R. 968 was presented to the President on May 6, 1997. The 
President signed H.R. 968 into law on May 15, 1997 (Public Law 
105-15).

                   drug-free communities act of 1997

                      Public Law 105-20 (H.R. 956)

    To amend the National Narcotics Leadership Act of 1988 to 
establish a program to support and encourage local communities 
that first demonstrate a comprehensive, long-term commitment to 
reduce substance abuse among youth, and for other purposes.

Summary

    H.R. 956 amends the National Narcotics Leadership Act of 
1988 to authorize the Director of the Office of National Drug 
Control Policy (the Director) to establish a program to support 
communities in the development and implementation of 
comprehensive, long-term plans and programs to prevent and 
treat substance abuse among youth. The Act requires grants to 
be made to coalitions including representatives of youth, 
parents, businesses, the media, schools, youth organizations, 
law enforcement, religious or fraternal organizations, civic 
groups, health care professionals, State, local, or tribal 
governmental agencies, and other organizations.
    H.R. 956 requires the Director, in carrying out the 
program, to: (1) make and track grants to recipients; (2) 
provide for technical assistance and training, data collection 
and dissemination of information on state-of-the-art practices 
that the Director determines to be effective in reducing 
substance abuse; and (3) provide for the general administration 
of the program. The Director is authorized to enter into 
contracts with national drug control agencies, including 
interagency agreements to delegate authority for the execution 
of grants to carry out this Act. In addition, H.R. 956 
authorizes appropriations for Fiscal Year 1998 through Fiscal 
Year 2002.
    Specified criteria that a coalition must meet to be 
eligible to receive an initial or renewal grant is set forth by 
the Drug-Free Communities Act of 1997. Limitations are 
prescribed concerning: (1) grant amounts; (2) coalition awards; 
and (3) rural coalition grants.
    The Act grants the Program Administrator general auditing 
and data collection authority, and requires the minimization of 
reporting requirements by grant recipients. H.R. 956 also 
authorizes the Program Administrator, with respect to any grant 
recipient or other organization, to: (1) offer technical 
assistance and training and enter into contracts and 
cooperative agreements; and (2) facilitate the coordination of 
programs between a grant recipient and other organizations, and 
entities. In addition, the Program Administrator is authorized 
to provide training to any representative designated by a grant 
recipient in: (1) coalition building; (2) task force 
development; (3) mediation and facilitation, direct service, 
assessment and evaluation; or (4) any other activity related to 
the purposes of the program.
    Finally, H.R. 956 establishes the Advisory Commission on 
Drug-Free Communities to advise, consult with, and make 
recommendations to the Director concerning activities carried 
out under the program, and provides that the Advisory 
Commission will be terminated at the end of Fiscal Year 2002.

Legislative History

    H.R. 956 was introduced in the House by Mr. Portman and 
three cosponsors on March 5, 1997. The bill was referred to the 
Committee on Government Reform and Oversight, and in addition 
to the Committee on Commerce. Within the Committee on Commerce, 
the bill was referred to the Subcommittee on Health and 
Environment.
    On May 16, 1997, the Committee on Government Reform and 
Oversight met to consider H.R. 956 and ordered the bill 
reported to the House, amended, by a voice vote. On May 19, 
1997, the Chairman of the Committee on Commerce sent a letter 
to the Chairman of the Committee on Government Reform and 
Oversight setting forth the Commerce Committee's interpretation 
of the legislative provisions contained in H.R. 956. The 
Chairman further indicated that, in order to expedite 
consideration, the Commerce Committee would agree to be 
discharged from further consideration of H.R. 956, without 
prejudicing its jurisdiction. On May 19, 1997, the Chairman of 
the Committee on Government Reform and Oversight sent a letter 
to the Chairman of the Committee on Commerce acknowledging the 
Committee on Commerce's jurisdictional concerns and 
prerogatives with respect to H.R. 956.
    The Committee on Government Reform and Oversight reported 
H.R. 956 to the House on May 20, 1997 (H. Rpt. 105-105, Part 
1). On May 20, 1997, the referral of H.R. 956 to the Committee 
on Commerce was extended for a period ending not later than May 
20, 1997. Subsequently, on May 20, 1997, the Committee on 
Commerce was discharged from further consideration of H.R. 956.
    The House considered H.R. 956 under Suspension of the Rules 
on May 22, 1997, and passed the bill, amended, by a roll call 
vote of 420 yeas to 1 nay.
    On June 2, 1997, H.R. 956 was received in the Senate, read 
twice, and placed on the Senate Calendar. On June 18, 1997, by 
unanimous consent, the Senate proceeded to the immediate 
consideration of H.R. 956 and passed the bill, without 
amendment, clearing the measure for the President.
    H.R. 956 was presented to the President on June 20, 1997. 
The President signed H.R. 956 into law on June 27, 1997 (Public 
Law 105-20).

    better health plan, inc. medicaid enrollment composition waiver

                     Public Law 105-31 (H.R. 2018)

    To waive temporarily the Medicaid enrollment composition 
rule for the Better Health Plan of Amherst, New York.

Summary

    Section 1903 (m)(2)(a)(ii) of the Social Security Act 
requires that Medicaid beneficiaries constitute less than 75 
percent of the membership of any prepaid health maintenance 
organization.
    Better Health Plan, Inc. is a Medicaid Prepaid Health 
Services Plan approved by the New York State Department of 
Health which operates in the five boroughs of New York City, as 
well as eleven counties. It serves over 41,500 individuals, of 
which 36,700 are Medicaid recipients.
    H.R. 2018 extends a previous waiver of Section 
1903(m)(2)(A)(ii) granted to Better Health Plan, Inc., which 
would have expired on June 30, 1997, through December 31, 1998.

Legislative History

    H.R. 2018 was introduced in the House by Mr. Paxon and four 
cosponsors on June 24, 1997. The bill was referred solely to 
the Committee on Commerce.
    The Full Committee met in open markup session on June 25, 
1997, to consider H.R. 2018 and ordered the bill reported to 
the House, amended, by a voice vote, a quorum being present. 
The Committee on Commerce reported H.R. 2018 to the House on 
July 8, 1997 (H. Rpt. 105-165).
    The House considered H.R. 2018 under Suspension of the 
Rules on July 8, 1997, and passed the bill by a voice vote.
    On July 9, 1997, H.R. 2018 was received in the Senate and 
read twice. On July 11, 1997, by unanimous consent, the Senate 
proceeded to the immediate consideration of H.R. 2018 and 
passed the bill, without amendment, clearing the measure for 
the President.
    H.R. 2018 was presented to the President on July 16, 1997. 
The President signed H.R. 2018 into law on July 25, 1997 
(Public Law 105-31).

                      balanced budget act of 1997

                 Public Law 105-33 (H.R. 2015, S. 947)

    (Title IV--Medicare, Medicaid, and Children's Health Provisions)

    To provide for reconciliation pursuant to subsections 
(b)(1) and (c) of section 105 of the concurrent resolution on 
the budget for fiscal year 1998.

Summary

    Title IV of Public Law 105-33, the Balanced Budget Act of 
1997, contains provisions dealing with reforming the Medicare 
Program, restructuring the Medicaid Program, and establishing 
the State Children's Health Insurance Program, all of which 
fall within the jurisdiction of the Committee on Commerce.

                                Medicare

Medicare+Choice

    Title IV of Public Law 105-33 establishes a new 
Medicare+Choice program, which allows beneficiaries to receive 
Medicare benefits through private health plans. The plans must 
provide at least the same benefits that traditional Medicare 
fee-for service (FFS) provides. A Medicare+Choice plan can be: 
(a) a coordinated care plan; (b) a private fee-for-service 
plan: or (c) on a limited demonstration basis, a combination of 
a medical savings account (MSA) and a Medicare+Choice insurance 
plan.
    Coordinated care plans may be offered by a health 
maintenance organization (HMO) (with or without a point-of-
service option), a Preferred Provider organization (PPO), or a 
Provider Sponsored Organization (PSO). PPOs are groups of 
providers who contract with an insurer to serve a group of 
enrollees on a negotiated fee-for-service basis (i.e., the 
physicians and hospitals agree to accept discounted rates for 
services, generally related to volume). A Provider Sponsored 
Organization (PSO) is a cooperative venture of a group of 
providers who control the delivery of services.
    Title IV of Public Law 105-33 defines an MSA plan as one 
that reimburses Medicare-covered services after a specified 
deductible (up to $6,000) is met. The difference between the 
premium for the high-deductible plan and the applicable 
capitation payment would be placed into an account for the 
beneficiary to use in meeting expenses below the deductible. 
Because beneficiaries get amounts annually, regardless of 
actual usage of health services, they may accumulate a 
substantial amount of money in their accounts. Beneficiaries 
that return to traditional Medicare may keep money accumulated 
in their accounts, The MSA option is a demonstration which can 
enroll up to 390,000 individuals.
    Under Title IV, a county's payment rate is the highest of 
three different rates: (1) a floor, or minimum payment rate; 
(2) a minimum update rate; or (3) a blended rate. Once each 
county's payment rate is calculated, the total projected 
spending for Medicare+Choice plans is compared to a budget 
neutral amount. If the projected spending is greater than the 
budget neutral amount, payment rates will be reduced until 
budget neutrality is met. This is accomplished by lowering 
payment rates in the blended counties. No county receives less 
than the floor rate or the minimum update.
    Under Title IV, the floor for 1998 is $367 per month. There 
were 1,213 counties with 1997 adjusted average per capita cost 
(AAPCC) payments below $367. If a county's 1997 AAPCC payment 
rate is greater than $367, plans in these counties will be 
guaranteed an increase of at least 2 percent in 1998 payment 
rates. In other words, the minimum update (or hold harmless 
rate) will be equal to the 1997 AAPCC times 102 percent. In 
1999, payment rates for the AAPCC will be at least 2 percent 
higher than the 1998 rates.
    In part, the AAPCCs were criticized for their wide 
variation across counties in the U.S. To reduce variation in 
costs across the nation, Title IV blends national and local 
rates. Blending reduces payments in counties with AAPCCs that 
have been historically higher than the national rates, and 
increases payments in counties with AAPCCs that have 
traditionally been lower than the national rate. Both the 
national and local rates used to compute the blended rate are 
adjusted rates. To compute the area-specific rate, graduate 
medical education (GME) payments will be phased out of the 
capitation rate over 5 years. National rates will be input-
priced adjusted to reflect differences in the costs of 
providing medical care across counties. In 1998, input price 
adjustments were made to the national average rate using 
hospital wage index and geographic adjustment factors, which 
are factors used to adjust payments to FFS Medicare providers.

Medicare Savings

    Title IV of Public Law 105-33 achieves Medicare savings by 
slowing the rate of growth in payments to hospitals, 
physicians, and other providers. The law creates a single 
conversion factor beginning in 1998 for physician fees. The 
1998 amount will be the 1997 primary care conversion factor, 
updated to 1998 by the average of three separate updates. 
Beginning in Fiscal Year 1998, this factor is replaced with a 
cumulative sustainable growth rate factor based on real gross 
domestic product growth.
    The law requires a new implementation of resource-based 
practice expenses. Starting in 1998, there will be a 
reallocation of no more than $390 million in practice expense 
relative value units. The new practice expense methodology will 
be phased-in over the 1999-2002 period. In 1999, 25 percent of 
the practice payment will be based on the new methodology. The 
percentage will increase to 50 percent in 2000, 75 percent in 
2001, and 100 percent in 2002.
    Under this law, Medicare's payment for hospital outpatient 
services is modified. First, this Act requires that beneficiary 
coinsurance amounts be deducted later in the reimbursement 
calculation for hospital outpatient services, so that Medicare 
payments for covered services are lower. Second, this Act 
extends the 5.8 percent reduction for those services paid on a 
cost-related basis. Finally, the Act requires the Secretary of 
Health and Human Services (the Secretary) to establish a 
Prospective Payment System for covered services beginning in 
1999.
    Title IV also reduces the annual update for ambulatory 
surgical center fees by the Consumer Price Index minus 2 
percentage points for each year between Fiscal Years 1998 and 
2002. For the payment for laboratory diagnostic tests, the law 
freezes the fee schedule update for the Fiscal Year 1998-2002 
period. Payment for ambulance services is modified by requiring 
that the reasonable costs and charge limits apply through 1999, 
with annual increases equal to the Consumer Price Index minus 
one percentage point. A fee schedule will be implemented by 
January 1, 2000.
    Finally, Title IV makes major changes in payment methods 
for home health. The Secretary is required to establish a 
prospective payment system (PPS) for home health and to 
implement the system beginning in October 1999. Prior to the 
PPS system, a series of interim payment changes are made for 
home health services. Home health agencies, for cost reporting 
periods beginning on or after October 1, 1997, and through 
September 1999, will be paid the lesser of: (1) their actual 
costs; (2) the per visit limit, reduced to 105 percent of the 
national median; or (3) a new blended agency-specific per 
beneficiary annual limit applied to the home health agency's 
census count of patients. The blended rate will be based on 75 
percent of an agency's own cost and 25 percent of the average 
cost per beneficiary for agencies in the same census region.

Medicare New Benefits

    Title IV of Public Law 105-33 provides for a series of new 
prevention initiatives. First, it authorizes coverage for 
annual mammograms for all women ages 40 and over and waives the 
deductible for screening mammograms. Second, it authorizes 
coverage, every 3 years, for a screening pelvic exam which 
includes a clinical beast examination. Third, it authorizes an 
annual prostate cancer screening test for men over age 50. 
Fourth, it authorizes coverage of, and establishes frequency 
limits for, colorectal cancer screening tests. Fifth, it 
authorizes coverage for diabetes outpatient self-management 
training services. Sixth, it authorizes coverage for bone mass 
measurement for high risk persons. Finally, it extends coverage 
of influenza and pneumonia vaccines.
    Title IV also authorizes coverage for acute oral anti-
nausea drugs used as part of an anticancer chemotherapeutic 
regimen. The drug would have to be administered by a physician 
for use immediately before, at, or within 48 hours of the time 
of the administration of the chemotherapeutic agent.

Medigap

    Title IV of Public Law 105-33 enacts a new set of 
provisions regarding Medigap. The law guarantees issuance of 
specified Medigap policies without a pre-existing condition 
exclusion for certain continuously enrolled individuals. 
Insurers are prohibited from discriminating in the pricing of 
such policies on the basis of health status, claims experience, 
or medical condition. The guaranteed issuance is extended to a 
series of statutorily specified situations which involve 
termination of Medicare+Choice plans.

                                Medicaid

Medicaid Savings

    The Medicaid provisions of Title IV of Public Law 105-33 
save $17 billion over a 5-year period. These savings come from 
three main sources: (1) limits on Federal matching payments to 
States for payments to disproportionate share (DSH) hospitals; 
(2) authorization for States to pay the Medicaid rates of low-
income Medicare beneficiaries; and (3) the repeal of minimum 
payment standards for hospitals, nursing homes, and community 
health centers.
    In 1991, Congress enacted State-specific limits on the 
amount of Federal Medicaid matching funds States may draw for 
payments to DSH hospitals. Title IV lowers these State-specific 
limits to achieve $10.4 billion in Federal savings over the 
next 5 years. The law also limits the amount of a State's 
Federal Medicaid matching fund allotments for DSH that the 
State can use for payments to State-operated mental hospitals.
    Prior to the enactment of this Act, States had the option 
of Medicaid paying the cost of Medicare deductibles and 
coinsurance required of certain low-income Medicare 
beneficiaries. These included beneficiaries who were eligible 
for full Medicaid benefits (dual eligibles) as well as Medicare 
beneficiaries known as Qualified Medicare Beneficiaries (QMBs). 
Title IV allows States not to pay these deductibles and 
coinsurance amounts to the extent that the payment made to a 
physician or other provider by Medicare exceeds the Medicaid 
rate for the service.
    Title IV repeals the Boren Amendment requirement that 
States pay for nursing facility services and hospital services 
covered under Medicaid using rates that are reasonable and 
adequate. States are required to provide for a public process 
for determination of rates of payment for covered services 
under which the proposed rates and final rates are published 
along with their underlying methodologies and justification. 
The process must give providers and beneficiaries a reasonable 
opportunity for review and comment on the proposed rates and 
payment methodologies.
    Finally, Title IV maintains the requirement that States 
include Federally-qualified health centers (FQHCs) in their 
Medicaid package, but phases out the 100 percent cost 
reimbursement requirement. The phase-out begins in Fiscal Year 
2000, when States are allowed to pay 95 percent of costs; 
continues through Fiscal Year 2003, when States are allowed to 
pay only 70 percent of costs; and ends with the repeal of the 
requirement on October 1, 2003.

Medicaid Coverage Changes

    Title IV of Public Law 105-33 reinstates Medicaid 
eligibility for all low-income immigrants legally in the 
country as of August 22, 1996, who were elderly or disabled and 
receiving Supplemental Security Income (SSI) benefits as of 
that date or who subsequently become disabled and qualify for 
SSI. The law also requires States to extend Medicaid coverage 
to all disabled children who were receiving SSI benefits as of 
August 22, 1996 (the date of enactment of the welfare law), and 
who would continue to be eligible for SSI were it not for the 
more restrictive disability definition.
    Title IV gives States the option to extend Medicaid 
coverage to children under age 19 for up to 12 months after a 
determination of eligibility regardless of any intervening 
change in circumstances. The law likewise gives States the 
option of extending Medicaid coverage to children from the time 
they are found to be presumptively eligible for Medicaid until 
the State agency makes a final determination of eligibility.
    Title IV permanently raises the Federal Medicaid matching 
rate for the District of Columbia from the current 50 percent 
to 70 percent, and also raises the matching rate for Alaska 
from 50 percent to 59.8 percent for the next three years.
    Title IV also establishes a block grant to the States with 
$1.5 billion in funding over the next five years. The funds are 
to be used to pay the costs of Part B premiums for Medicare 
beneficiaries between 120 and 135 percent of the poverty line. 
Funds also are to be used for the payment of additional Part B 
premiums due to the transfer of payment for the Medicare home 
health benefit from Part A to Part B of Medicare for 
beneficiaries between 135 percent and 175 percent of the 
poverty line. No individual Medicare beneficiary in this block 
grant is entitled to premium assistance. States must limit the 
number of beneficiaries to whom they extend premium assistance 
on a first come, first served basis.
    Finally, Title IV of PL 105-33 contains a significant 
expansion in State authority with respect to the use of managed 
care. It enables the States to mandatorily enroll Medicaid 
beneficiaries in managed care organizations (MCO's) without a 
waiver from the Secretary. States are explicitly prohibited, 
however, from mandatorily enrolling children with special needs 
in managed care. It allows States to contract with managed care 
organizations that serve only Medicaid beneficiaries, whereas 
previously a MCO could have no more than 75 percent of its 
enrollees who were Medicaid eligibles. Beneficiaries must have 
a choice of at least two managed care entities, however, 
special exceptions may be made in rural areas. The Act also 
included a number of important beneficiary and program 
integrity protections. It applied the prudent layperson 
standard for emergency care, required plans to have quality 
assurance and internal grievance programs, and banned ``gag-
clauses'' in physician contracts. It also applied a number of 
marketing and enrollment protections (like prohibitions against 
cold-call marketing and marketing fraud) in managed care as 
well as conflict of interest safeguards for plans and 
providers.

               State Children's Health Insurance Program

    Title IV of Public law 105-33 establishes a child health 
block gant that offers States $20.3 billion in new Federal 
funding over the next five years to provide child health 
assistance to uninsured, low-income children. The law allows 
States to use these funds to expand coverage for children by 
creating separate child health insurance programs or by 
expanding coverage under the Medicaid program.
    States can begin to receive their block grant funds 
beginning in Fiscal Year 1998, after they submit to the 
Secretary of Health and Human Services a child health plan 
describing how they intend to spend block grant monies. The law 
gives States four options for meeting minimum Federal benefit 
standards for insurance coverage under a separate State 
program. One, they may offer health benefits coverage 
equivalent to the benefits offered under the standard Blue 
Cross/Blue Shield preferred provider option service plan 
offered to Federal employees. Two, a State may offer health 
benefits coverage equivalent to the benefits provided under a 
health plan that is offered and generally available to a 
State's public employees. Three, a State may offer health 
benefits coverage equivalent to the benefits offered by the HMO 
within the State that has the highest commercial enrollment. 
Four, a State can choose one of the three above plans to serve 
as a benchmark for an alternative package of benefits. The 
alternative must meet three criteria: (1) it must have an 
aggregate actuarial value equivalent to the benchmark plan 
selected by the State; (2) it must offer hospital, physician, 
lab and x-ray, and well-baby and well-child care; and (3) if 
the State's benchmark offers coverage for prescription drugs, 
mental health, vision, or hearing benefits, the children's 
benefit package must offer some coverage in each of these areas 
(the coverage must have an actuarial value that is equal to at 
least 75 percent of the benchmark package).
    Title IV limits the extent to which States can impose 
premiums or cost-sharing on children enrolled in separate 
programs. States cannot adopt cost-sharing or premium policies 
that favor higher-income families over lower-income families. 
The law offers special protections from premium and cost-
sharing for families with income below 150 percent of the 
poverty line.
    Finally, Title IV allows States to use child health funds 
to implement an expansion of Medicaid at an enhanced matching 
rate. If a State opts to expand coverage under Medicaid, it 
would do so by increasing its income eligibility standards to 
cover children who did not qualify for Medicaid under State 
rules in effect as of April 15, 1997. If a State uses some, or 
all, of its grant funds to cover more children under Medicaid, 
Medicaid rules relating to entitlement, benefits, cost-sharing, 
and delivery of services would apply to the newly covered group 
of children.

Legislative History

    On June 12, 1997, the Full Committee considered and 
approved three Committee Prints pertaining to health issues for 
transmittal to the Committee on the Budget for inclusion in the 
Balanced Budget Act of 1997 as follows.
    A Committee Print entitled ``Title IV--Committee on 
Commerce--Medicare'', was approved by a roll call vote of 30 
yeas to 17 nays. Prior to this action, on June 10, 1997, the 
Subcommittee on Health and Environment approved the Committee 
Print for Full Committee consideration, amended, by a roll call 
vote of 15 yeas to 11 nays.
    A Committee Print entitled ``Title III, Subtitle E--
Medicaid'', was approved by a roll call vote of 28 yeas to 18 
nays. Prior to this action, on June 10, 1997, the Subcommittee 
on Health and Environment approved the Committee Print for Full 
Committee consideration, amended, by a roll call vote of 16 
yeas to 12 nays.
    A Committee Print entitled ``Title III, Subtitle F--Child 
Health Assistance Program'', was approved by a roll call vote 
of 39 yeas to 7 nays. Prior to this action, on June 10, 1997, 
the Subcommittee on Health and Environment approved the 
Committee Print for Full Committee consideration, amended, by a 
voice vote.
    On June 17, 1997, the Chairman of the Committee on Commerce 
sent a letter to the Chairman of the Committee on the Budget 
transmitting these three Committee Prints for inclusion in the 
Balanced Budget Act of 1997.
    The provisions of two of these Committee Prints were 
included in the text of Title III of H.R. 2015, as reported to 
the House by the Committee on the Budget on June 24, 1997, as 
Subtitle E--Medicaid and Subtitle F--Child Health Assistance 
Program (CHAP) (H. Rpt. 105-149). The provisions of the 
Committee Print dealing with the Medicare Program were included 
in the text of Title IV of H.R. 2015, as reported to the House 
by the Committee on the Budget on June 24, 1997 (H. Rpt. 105-
149).
    The Committee on Rules met on June 24, 1997, and granted a 
rule providing for the consideration of H.R. 2015. The rule was 
filed in the House as H. Res. 174. On June 25, 1997, the House 
passed H. Res. 174 by a roll call vote of 228 yeas to 200 nays.
    The House considered H.R. 2015 on June 25, 1997, and passed 
the bill, amended, by a roll call vote of 270 yeas to 162 nays. 
On June 25, 1997, H.R. 2015 was received in the Senate and read 
twice.
    On June 20, 1997, the Senate Committee on the Budget 
reported a companion bill to the Senate, which was introduced 
in the Senate as S. 947 (No Written Report). Pursuant to a 
unanimous consent request agreed to on June 20, 1997, the 
Senate began consideration of S. 947 on June 23, 1997. The 
Senate considered S. 947 on June 23, June 24, and June 25, 
1997; and on June 25, 1997, passed S. 947 by a roll call vote 
of 73 yeas to 27 nays. Pursuant to a unanimous consent request 
agreed to on June 24, 1997, the Senate, on June 25, 1997, then 
proceeded to the immediate consideration of H.R. 2015, struck 
all after the enacting clause and inserted in lieu thereof the 
text of S. 947 as passed by the Senate, and passed H.R. 2015. 
By unanimous consent, the Senate postponed further 
consideration of S. 947.
    On June 27, 1997, the Senate insisted on its amendment to 
H.R. 2015, requested a conference with the House, and appointed 
conferees. On July 10, 1997, the House disagreed to the Senate 
amendment to H.R. 2015, agreed to a conference with the Senate, 
and appointed conferees. A motion to instruct the conferees was 
agreed to by a roll call vote of 414 yeas to 14 nays. Members 
of the Committee on Commerce were appointed as conferees. On 
July 30, 1997, the conference report on H.R. 2015 was filed in 
the House (H. Rpt. 105-347).
    On July 29, 1997, the Committee on Rules met and granted a 
rule waiving clause 4(b) of Rule XI (requiring a 2/3 vote to 
consider a rule on the same day it is reported by the Committee 
on Rules) with respect to the rule on H.R. 2015, or amendments 
in disagreement reported before August 3, 1997, and the rule on 
H.R. 2014 or amendments in disagreement reported before August 
3, 1997. The rule was filed in the House as H. Res. 201. On 
July 30, 1997, the Committee on Rules met and granted a rule 
providing for the consideration of the conference report on 
H.R. 2015. The rule was filed in the House as H. Res. 202. On 
July 30, 1997, the House passed H. Res. 201 by a roll call vote 
of 237 yeas to 187 nays. The House then passed H. Res. 202 by a 
voice vote. Finally, on July 30, 1997, the House agreed to the 
conference report on H.R. 2015 by a roll call vote of 346 yeas 
to 85 nays.
    The Senate considered the conference report on H.R. 2015 on 
July 30, and July 31, 1997; and on July 31, 1997, passed the 
conference report by a roll call vote of 85 yeas to 15 nays, 
clearing the measure for the President.
    H.R. 2015 was presented to the President on August 1, 1997. 
On August 5, 1997, the President signed H.R. 2015 into law 
(Public Law 105-33).
    (NOTE: Public Law 104-130, the Line Item Veto Act, amended 
the Budget Control and Impoundment Act of 1974, as amended, and 
gave the President additional rescission authority. The Act 
provided that, whenever the President signs a bill or 
resolution, the President may cancel in whole (1) any dollar 
amount of discretionary budget authority, (2) any item of new 
direct spending, or (3) certain limited tax benefits. In making 
such cancellations, the President must determine that the 
cancellation will (1) reduce the Federal budget deficit, (2) 
not impair any essential government functions, and (3) not harm 
the national interest. Public Law 104-130 also provides that 
these cancellations (line item vetoes) shall be effective upon 
receipt in the House and the Senate of a special message from 
the President containing the notification of cancellation 
unless a disapproval bill for such special message is enacted 
into law.
    On August 11, 1997, pursuant to the provisions of Public 
Law 104-130, the President cancelled an item of new direct 
spending, Section 4722(c) of Public Law 105-33, in its entirety 
(Cancellation No. 97-3). Subsection (c) of Section 4722 deals 
with a Waiver of Certain Provider Tax Provisions with respect 
to the Treatment of State Taxes Imposed on Certain Hospitals in 
the State of New York.
    On September 3, 1997, a Message from the President 
transmitting A Cancellation of One Item of New Direct Spending 
contained in the Balanced Budget Act of 1997 was received in 
the House and referred to the Committee on the Budget (H. Doc. 
105-115).
    On September 3, 1997, S. 1144, a bill disapproving the 
cancellation transmitted by the President on August 11, 1997, 
regarding Public Law 105-33, was introduced in the Senate by 
Senators Moynihan and D'Amato. The bill was referred to the 
Senate Committee on Finance. On September 15, 1997, pursuant to 
the provisions of section 1023 of Public Law 93-344, the 
Congressional Budget and Impoundment Control Act of 1974, the 
Senate Committee on Finance was discharged from further 
consideration of S. 1144 and the bill was placed on the Senate 
Calendar. No further action was taken on S. 1144.
    On September 9, 1997, H.R. 2436, a bill disapproving the 
cancellation transmitted by the President on August 11, 1997, 
regarding Public Law 105-33, was introduced in the House by 
Representatives Gilman and Rangel. The bill was referred solely 
to the Committee on Commerce. No further action was taken on 
H.R. 2436.
    On June 25, 1998, the United States Supreme Court, in 
Clinton, et al. v. City of New York, et al., held that the Line 
Item Veto Act (Public Law 104-130) violated the Presentment 
Clause of the Constitution. That Clause requires every bill 
which has passed the House and Senate before becoming law must 
be presented to the President for approval or veto, but is 
silent on whether the President may amend or repeal provisions 
of bills that have passed the House and Senate in identical 
form. The Court interpreted silence on this issue as equivalent 
to an express prohibition.
    The Court concluded that the Line Item Veto Act 
unconstitutionally empowered the President unilaterally to 
repeal or amend provisions of duly enacted bills. Nonvetoed 
items that emerged as law were truncated versions of bills 
passed by both Houses of Congress, but not the product of the 
finely wrought procedure for lawmaking designed by the framers 
of the Constitution.
    After reviewing the Court's decision, the Department of 
Justice determined that the ruling invalidated each of the 
cancellations made pursuant to the Line Item Veto Act, 
including those not subject to the suit. Acting on this 
determination, the Office of Management and Budget made 
available to the affected agencies all funds that had been 
canceled pursuant to the Act with one exception pertaining to 
mineral rights which was subject to a rescission proposal 
submitted to Congress.)

                      taxpayer relief act of 1997

        Public Law 105-34 (H.R. 2014, H. Con. Res. 138, S. 949)

    To provide for reconciliation pursuant to subsections 
(b)(2) and (d) of section 105 of the concurrent resolution on 
the budget for fiscal year 1998.

Summary

    Section 1604 of Title XVI of Public Law 105-34 amends the 
Balanced Budget Act of 1997 (Public Law 105-33) to direct the 
Secretary of Health and Human Services to provide, either 
directly or through grants, for research into the prevention 
and cure of Type I diabetes.

Legislative History

    H.R. 2014 was introduced in the House on June 24, 1997, by 
Mr. Kasich as an original measure, and was reported to the 
House on the same day by the Committee on the Budget (H. Rpt. 
105-148).
    The Committee on Rules met on June 24, 1997, and granted a 
rule providing for the consideration of H.R. 2014. The rule was 
filed in the House as H. Res. 174. On June 25, 1997, the House 
passed H. Res. 174 by a roll call vote of 228 yeas to 200 nays 
and 1 voting present.
    The House considered H.R. 2014 on June 26, 1997, and passed 
the bill, amended, by a roll call vote of 253 yeas to 179 nays. 
On June 26, 1997, H.R. 2015 was received in the Senate.
    On June 20, 1997, the Senate Committee on Finance reported 
a companion bill to the Senate, which was introduced in the 
Senate as S. 949 (S. Rpt. 105-33). The Senate considered S. 949 
on June 25, June 26, and June 27, 1997. On June 27, 1997, by 
unanimous consent, the Senate proceeded to the immediate 
consideration of H.R. 2014, struck all after the enacting 
clause and inserted in lieu thereof the text of S. 949, as 
amended by the Senate, and passed H.R. 2014 by a roll call vote 
of 80 yeas to 18 nays. On June 27, 1997, the Senate insisted on 
its amendment to H.R. 2014, requested a conference with the 
House, and appointed conferees. Subsequently, on June 27, 1997, 
by unanimous consent, S. 949 was returned to the Senate 
Calendar.
    On July 8, 1997, H.R. 2014 was returned to the House. On 
July 10, 1997, the House disagreed to the Senate amendment to 
H.R. 2014, agreed to a conference with the Senate, and 
appointed conferees. A motion to instruct the conferees failed 
by a roll call vote of 199 yeas to 233 nays. Although not 
appointed as conferees, Members of the Committee on Commerce 
worked with the House and Senate Conferees on H.R. 2014 with 
respect to the issue under the Committee's jurisdiction.
    On July 29, 1997, the Committee on Rules met and granted a 
rule waiving clause 4(b) of Rule XI (requiring a 2/3 vote to 
consider a rule on the same day it is reported by the Committee 
on Rules) with respect to the rule on H.R. 2015, or amendments 
in disagreement reported before August 3, 1997, and the rule on 
H.R. 2014 or amendments in disagreement reported before August 
3, 1997. The rule was filed in the House as H. Res. 201. On 
July 30, 1997, the House passed H. Res. 201 by a roll call vote 
of 237 yeas to 187 nays.
    The conference report on H.R. 2014 was filed in the House 
on July 30, 1997 (H. Rpt. 105-220). On July 30, 1997, the 
Committee on Rules met and granted a rule providing for the 
consideration of the conference report on H.R. 2014. The rule 
was filed in the House as H. Res. 206. The House passed H. Res. 
206, amended, by a voice vote on July 31, 1997. On July 30, 
1997, the House agreed to the conference report on H.R. 2014 by 
a roll call vote of 389 yeas to 43 nays. Finally, on July 31, 
1997, by unanimous consent, the House proceeded to the 
immediate consideration of H. Con. Res. 138, a resolution to 
correct technical errors in the enrollment of H.R. 2014, and 
agreed to the concurrent resolution.
    On July 31, 1997, by unanimous consent, the Senate 
proceeded to the immediate consideration of the conference 
report on H.R. 2014 and agreed to the conference report by a 
roll call vote of 92 yeas to 8 nays, clearing the measure for 
the President. By unanimous consent, the Senate then proceeded 
to the immediate consideration of H. Con. Res. 138, a 
resolution to correct technical errors in the enrollment of 
H.R. 2014, and agreed to the concurrent resolution on July 31, 
1997.
    H.R. 2014 was presented to the President on August 1, 1997. 
On August 5, 1997, the President signed H.R. 2014 into law 
(Public Law 105-34).
    (NOTE: Public Law 104-130, the Line Item Veto Act, amended 
the Budget Control and Impoundment Act of 1974, as amended, and 
gave the President additional rescission authority. The Act 
provided that, whenever the President signs a bill or 
resolution, the President may cancel in whole (1) any dollar 
amount of discretionary budget authority, (2) any item of new 
direct spending, or (3) certain limited tax benefits. In making 
such cancellations, the President must determine that the 
cancellation will (1) reduce the Federal budget deficit, (2) 
not impair any essential government functions, and (3) not harm 
the national interest. Public Law 104-130 also provides that 
these cancellations (line item vetoes) shall be effective upon 
receipt in the House and the Senate of a special message from 
the President containing the notification of cancellation 
unless a disapproval bill for such special message is enacted 
into law.
    On August 11, 1997, pursuant to the provisions of Public 
Law 104-130, the President cancelled two limited tax benefits 
(Cancellation No. 97-1 and Cancellation No. 97-2). Cancellation 
No. 97-1 cancels Section 1175, ``Exemption for Active Financing 
Income'', in its entirety. Cancellation No. 97-2 cancels 
Section 968, ``Nonrecognition of Gain on Sale of Stock to 
Certain Farmers' Cooperatives'', in its entirety.
    On September 3, 1997, a Message from the President 
transmitting Cancellations of Two Limited Tax Benefits 
contained in the Taxpayer Relief Act of 1997 was received in 
the House and referred to the Committee on the Budget and the 
Committee on Ways and Means. (H. Doc. 105-116.)
    On June 25, 1998, the United States Supreme Court, in 
Clinton, et al. v. City of New York, et al., held that the Line 
Item Veto Act (Public Law 104-130) violated the Presentment 
Clause of the Constitution. That Clause requires every bill 
which has passed the House and Senate before becoming law must 
be presented to the President for approval or veto, but is 
silent on whether the President may amend or repeal provisions 
of bills that have passed the House and Senate in identical 
form. The Court interpreted silence on this issue as equivalent 
to an express prohibition.
    The Court concluded that the Line Item Veto Act 
unconstitutionally empowered the President unilaterally to 
repeal or amend provisions of duly enacted bills. Nonvetoed 
items that emerged as law were truncated versions of bills 
passed by both Houses of Congress, but not the product of the 
finely wrought procedure for lawmaking designed by the framers 
of the Constitution.
    After reviewing the Court's decision, the Department of 
Justice determined that the ruling invalidated each of the 
cancellations made pursuant to the Line Item Veto Act, 
including those not subject to the suit. Acting on this 
determination, the Office of Management and Budget made 
available to the affected agencies all funds that had been 
canceled pursuant to the Act with one exception pertaining to 
mineral rights which was subject to a rescission proposal 
submitted to Congress.)

                      stamp out breast cancer act

                     Public Law 105-41 (H.R. 1585)

    To allow postal patrons to contribute to funding for breast 
cancer research through the voluntary purchase of certain 
specially issued United States postage stamps, and for other 
purposes.

Summary

    H.R. 1585 requires the U.S. Postal Service to establish a 
special rate of postage for first-class mail that is equal to 
the regular rate plus a differential of not to exceed 25 
percent to be offered as an alternative that patrons may use 
voluntarily to contribute to funding for breast cancer 
research.
    H.R. 1585 requires the U.S. Postal Service to pay 70 
percent of the amounts attributable (additional revenues minus 
costs) to such differential to the National Institutes of 
Health and the remainder to the Department of Defense under 
arrangements as mutually agreed, provided payments are made at 
least twice a year.
    In addition, the Postmaster General is required to include 
in each annual report to the Board of Governors information 
concerning the operation of this Act.
    Finally, the provisions of this Act will be terminated at 
the end of the two-year period beginning on the date on which 
such postage stamps are first made available to the public. The 
Comptroller General is required to report to the Congress, no 
later than three months (but not earlier than six months) 
before the end of the two-year period, on the operation of this 
Act.

Legislative History

    H.R. 1585 was introduced in the House by Ms. Molinari and 
two cosponsors on May 13, 1997. The bill was referred to the 
Committee on Government Reform and Oversight, and in addition 
to the Committee on Commerce and the Committee on National 
Security. Within the Committee on Commerce, the bill was 
referred to the Subcommittee on Health and Environment.
    On July 22, 1997, the House considered H.R. 1585 under 
Suspension of the Rules, thereby discharging the Committees of 
referral from further consideration of H.R. 1585. The House 
passed H.R. 1585, amended, by a roll call vote of 422 yeas to 3 
nays.
    On July 23, 1997, H.R. 1585 was received in the Senate and 
read twice. On July 24, 1997, by unanimous consent, the Senate 
proceeded to the immediate consideration of H.R. 1585, and 
passed the bill, clearing the measure for the President.
    H.R. 1585 was presented to the President on August 1, 1997. 
The President signed H.R. 1585 into law on August 13, 1997 
(Public Law 105-41).

  departments of labor, health and human services, and education, and 
               related agencies appropriations act, 1998

                 Public Law 105-78 (H.R. 2264, S. 1061)

                          (Health Provisions)

    Making appropriations for the Departments of Labor, Health 
and Human Services, and Education, and related agencies for the 
fiscal year ending September 30, 1998, and for other purposes.

Summary

    Public Law 105-78 provides appropriations for Fiscal Year 
1998 for the Departments of Labor, Health and Human Services, 
and Education, and related agencies. Additionally, the Act 
includes several provisions falling with the jurisdiction of 
the Committee on Commerce dealing with health issues.
    Section 211 of Public Law 105-78 includes provisions 
dealing with the relocation of the Gillis W. Long Hansen's 
Disease Center, which reflect an amended version of the text of 
H.R. 1588, the Hansen's Disease Program Amendments Act of 1997, 
which was introduced in the House on May 8, 1997, by Mr. Baker 
and five cosponsors and referred solely to the Committee on 
Commerce.
    Section 211 sets forth procedures to be used for the 
relocation of the Gillis W. Long Hansen's Disease Center and 
the transfer to the State of Louisiana of the property at the 
current site of such Center, including administrative 
procedures for the relocation of patients and separation of 
employees.
    Section 603 of Public Law 105-78 includes provisions 
dealing with Parkinson's Disease research, which reflect an 
amended version of the text of H.R. 1260, the Morris K. Udall 
Parkinson's Disease Research Act of 1997, which was introduced 
in the House on April 9, 1997, by Mr. Upton and 110 cosponsors 
and referred solely to the Committee on Commerce.
    Section 603 amends the Public Health Service Act to require 
the Director of National Institutes of Health to establish a 
program for research and training with respect to Parkinson's 
disease. Specifically, it authorizes the Director to award up 
to ten Core Center Grants to encourage the development of 
innovative multidisciplinary research and provide training 
concerning Parkinson's. This section also establishes a grant 
program to support investigators who have proven records of 
excellence and innovation in Parkinson's research. Finally, for 
the purposes of carrying out this section and section 301 and 
Title IV of the Public Health Service Act with respect to 
Parkinson's Disease research, $100 million is authorized for 
Fiscal Year 1998 and such sums as may be necessary for each of 
Fiscal Years 1999 and 2000.
    Members of the Committee on Commerce worked with the 
Members of the House and Senate Appropriations Committees to 
develop both of these provisions.

Legislative History

    H.R. 2264 was introduced in the House on July 25, 1997, by 
Mr. Porter, as an original measure, and reported to the House 
on the same day by the Committee on Appropriations (H. Rpt. 
105-205).
    The Committee on Rules met on July 28, 1997, and granted a 
rule providing for the consideration of H.R. 2264. The rule was 
filed in the House as H. Res. 199. On July 31, 1997, the House 
agreed to a unanimous consent request providing for the 
consideration of H.R. 2264 and amendments thereto. 
Subsequently, on July 31, 1997, H. Res. 199 was laid on the 
table.
    The House considered H.R. 2264 on September 4, September 5, 
September 8, September 9, September 10, September 11, September 
16, and September 17, 1997. On September 17, 1997, the House 
passed H.R. 2264, amended, by a roll call vote of 346 yeas to 
80 nays.
    On July 24, 1997, the Senate Committee on Appropriations 
reported S. 1061, a companion bill, to the Senate (S. Rpt. 105-
58). The Senate considered S. 1061 on September 2, September 3, 
September 4, September 5, September 8, September 9, September 
10, and September 11, 1997. On September 11, 1997, the Senate 
passed S. 1061, amended, by roll call vote of 92 yeas to 8 
nays.
    On September 17, 1997, H.R. 2264 was received in the Senate 
and read twice. Pursuant to a unanimous consent request agreed 
to on September 4, 1997, the Senate, on September 17, 1997, 
proceeded to the immediate consideration of H.R. 2264, struck 
all after the enacting clause and inserted in lieu thereof the 
text of S. 1061, as passed by the Senate, and passed H.R. 2264 
amended. On September 17, 1997, the Senate insisted on its 
amendment to H.R. 2264, requested a conference with the House, 
and appointed conferees. Finally on September 17, 1997, by 
unanimous consent, the Senate vitiated passage of S. 1061 and 
indefinitely postponed further consideration of the bill.
    On September 23, 1997, the House disagreed to the Senate 
amendment to H.R. 2264, agreed to a conference with the Senate, 
and appointed conferees. A motion to instruct the conferees was 
agreed to by a voice vote.
    On November 7, 1997, the conference report on H.R. 2264 was 
filed in the House (H. Rpt. 105-390). On November 7, 1997, the 
House agreed to the conference report on H.R. 2264 by a roll 
call vote of 352 yeas to 65 nays.
    On November 8, 1997, the Senate proceeded to the immediate 
consideration of the conference report on H.R. 2264, and agreed 
to the conference by a roll call vote of 91 yeas to 4 nays, 
clearing the measure for the President.
    H.R. 2264 was presented to the President on November 8, 
1997. The President signed H.R. 2264 into law on November 13, 
1997 (Public law 105-78).

        national defense authorization act for fiscal year 1998

     Public Law 105-85 (H.R. 1119, S. 936, S. 924, S. Con. Res. 64)

                  (Environment and Health Provisions)

    To authorize appropriations for fiscal year 1998 for 
military activities of the Department of Defense, for military 
construction, and for defense activities of the Department of 
Energy, to prescribe personnel strengths for such fiscal year 
for the Armed Forces, and for other purposes.

Summary

    Public Law 105-85 includes a number of provisions which 
fall within the jurisdiction of the Committee on Commerce, 
including provisions dealing with environment and health 
issues. Members of the Committee on Commerce were appointed as 
conferees on these provisions and participated in the 
conference negotiations which led to the agreements contained 
in H.R. 1119.
    Section 351 of Title III of Division A contains a provision 
establishing a policy for the sale of Clean Air Act emission 
reduction credits by military facilities. This section 
authorizes the Secretary of Defense to establish a two-year 
pilot program to assess the feasibility and advisability for 
the sale of economic incentives for the reduction of air 
pollutants. The section also allows the proceeds of the sale of 
such economic incentives to be credited to the funds available 
to the military facility for the costs of identifying, 
quantifying, or valuing the economic incentives that are sold. 
If, after the proceeds are credited for the above-specified 
activities, there remains a balance attributable to the sale, 
this balance may be made available to the Secretary of Defense 
for allocation to programs, projects and activities necessary 
for compliance with Federal environmental laws and, to the 
extent practicable, allocated to the facilities which generated 
the economic incentives. The total amount allocated from all 
sales in a fiscal year, however, may not exceed $500,000, with 
any balance above this amount turned over to the U.S. Treasury 
as miscellaneous receipts.
    With respect to health issues, Public Law 105-85 contains 
the following provisions which fall within the jurisdiction of 
the Committee on Commerce: (1) Section 601, dealing with an 
increase in basic pay for Fiscal Year 1998; (2) Section 653, 
dealing with the eligibility of Public Health Service (PHS) 
officers and National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration 
(NOAA) Commissioned Corps officers for reimbursement of 
adoption expenses; (3) Section 734, dealing with dental 
insurance plan coverage for retirees of the PHS and NOAA; and 
(4) Section 737, dealing with portability of State licenses for 
Department of Defense health care professionals.

Legislative History

    H.R. 1119 was introduced in the House by Representatives 
Spence and Dellums on March 19, 1997, and referred solely to 
the Committee on National Security. The Committee on National 
Security met to consider H.R. 1119 on June 11, 1997, and 
ordered the bill reported to the House, amended, by a roll call 
vote of 51 yeas to 3 nays. On June 16, 1997, the Committee on 
National Security reported H.R. 1119 to the House (H. Rpt. 105-
132).
    The Committee on Rules met on June 18, 1997, and granted a 
rule providing for the consideration of H.R. 1119. The rule was 
filed in the House as H. Res. 169. On June 19, 1997, the House 
passed H. Res. 169, amended, by a roll call vote of 322 yeas to 
101 nays.
    The House considered H.R. 1119 on June 19, June 20, June 
23, June 24, and June 25, 1997; and on June 25, 1997, passed 
the bill, as amended by a roll call vote of 304 yeas to 120 
nays. On July 7, 1997, H.R. 1119 was received in the Senate, 
read twice, and placed on the Senate Calendar.
    On June 17, 1997, the Senate Committee on Armed Services 
reported an original measure to the Senate, which was 
introduced in the Senate by Mr. Thurmond as S. 924 and placed 
on the Senate Calendar (S. Rpt. 105-29). On June 18, 1997, the 
Senate Committee on Armed Services reported an original measure 
to the Senate, which was introduced in the Senate by Mr. 
Thurmond as S. 936 and placed on the Senate Calendar (No 
Written Report).
    The Senate considered S. 936 on June 19, June 20, July 7, 
July 8, July 9, July 10, and July 11, 1997. On July 11, 1997, 
the Senate passed S. 936, amended, by a roll call vote of 94 
yeas to 4 nays. On July 11, 1997, by unanimous consent, the 
Senate agreed to a request that S. Rpt. 105-29, the report to 
accompany S. 924, be deemed to be the report to accompany S. 
936. The Senate then, by unanimous consent, took H.R. 1119 from 
the Senate Calendar and passed the bill, amended with the text 
of S. 936 as passed by the Senate. The Senate insisted on its 
amendment to H.R. 1119, requested a conference with the House, 
and appointed conferees.
    On July 25, 1997, the House disagreed to the Senate 
amendment to H.R. 1119, agreed to a conference with the Senate, 
and appointed conferees. Members of the Committee on Commerce 
were appointed as conferees. The House, on July 25, 1997, also 
agreed by a roll call vote of 414 yeas to 0 nays to a motion to 
instruct the conferees and, by a roll call vote of 409 yeas to 
1 nay, agreed to a motion to close portions of the conference.
    On September 5, 1997, the House agreed to a second motion 
to instruct the conferees by a roll call vote of 261 yeas to 
150 nays. The conference report on H.R. 1119 was filed in the 
House on October 23, 1997 (H. Rpt. 105-340).
    On October 23, 1997, the Committee on Rules met and granted 
a rule providing for the consideration of the conference report 
on H.R. 1119. The rule was filed in the House as H. Res. 278. 
On October 28, 1997, the House passed H. Res. 278 by a roll 
call vote of 353 yeas to 59 nays.
    The House agreed to the conference report by a roll call 
vote of 286 yeas to 123 nays on October 28, 1997. The Senate 
agreed to the conference report by a roll call vote of 90 yeas 
to 10 nays on November 6, 1997.
    On November 6, 1997, the Senate also agreed to S. Con. Res. 
64, a resolution to provide for corrections in the enrollment 
of H.R. 1119, pursuant to a unanimous consent request agreed to 
on October 31, 1997. S. Con. Res. 64 was received in the House 
on November 6, 1997, and held at the desk. No further action 
was taken on S. Con. Res. 64.
    H.R. 1119 was presented to the President on November 6, 
1997. The President signed H.R. 1119 into law on November 18, 
1997 (Public Law 105-85).

                 adoption and safe families act of 1997

                      Public Law 105-89 (H.R. 867)

    To promote the adoption of children in foster care.

Summary

    Section 306 of Title III of Public Law 105-89 mandates that 
State plans for foster care and adoption assistance provide 
health insurance coverage for children with special needs. 
Additionally, Title III also prohibits the Secretary of Health 
and Human Services from authorizing a State demonstration 
project if it fails to provide health insurance coverage for 
certain children with special needs.

Legislative History

    H.R. 867 was introduced in the House by Mr. Camp and two 
cosponsors on February 27, 1997. The bill was referred solely 
to the Committee on Ways and Means.
    The Committee on Ways and Means considered H.R. 867 on 
April 23, 1997, and ordered the bill reported to the House, 
amended, by a voice vote. The Committee reported H.R. 867 to 
the House on April 28, 1997 (H. Rpt. 105-77).
    The Committee on Rules met on April 29, 1997, and granted a 
rule providing for the consideration of H.R. 867. The rule was 
filed in the House as H. Res. 134. On April 30, 1997, the House 
passed H. Res. 134 by a voice vote.
    The House considered H.R. 867 on April 30, 1997, and passed 
the bill, amended, by a roll call vote of 416 yeas to 5 nays. 
On May 1, 1997, H.R. 867 was received in the Senate. On June 2, 
1997, H.R. 867 was read a first time. On June, 3, 1997, H.R. 
867 was read for the second time and placed on the Senate 
Calendar.
    On November 8, 1997, by unanimous consent, the Senate 
proceeded to the immediate consideration of H.R. 867 and passed 
the bill, amended.
    On November 13, 1997, the House considered H. Res. 327 
under Suspension of the Rules, and passed the resolution by a 
roll call vote of 406 yeas to 7 nays. H. Res. 327 provided for 
the agreement of the House to the Senate amendment to H.R. 867, 
with an amendment.
    On November 13, 1997, H. R. 867 was laid before the Senate 
and, by unanimous consent, the Senate concurred in the House 
amendment to the Senate amendment to H.R. 867, clearing the 
measure for the President.
    H.R. 867 was presented to the President on November 17, 
1997. The President signed H.R. 867 into law on November 19, 
1997 (Public Law 105-89).

         food and drug administration modernization act of 1997

 Public Law 105-115 (S. 830, H.R. 1411, H.R. 1710, H.R. 2469, H. Con. 
                       Res. 196, S. Con. Res. 69)

    To amend the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act and the 
Public Health Service Act to improve the regulation of food, 
drugs, devices, and biological products, and for other 
purposes.

Summary

    The Food and Drug Administration Modernization Act of 1997 
(Modernization Act) addresses, among other things, approval of 
prescription drugs, medical devices, and food additives.
    With respect to product approvals for drugs, the 
Modernization Act, reauthorizes the Prescription Drug User Fee 
Act of 1992, which, during its first five years, resulted in 
over $325 million being submitted to the FDA which paid for 600 
new reviewers at the FDA, which reduced FDA's average drug 
approval time by more than 13 months. The Modernization Act 
also establishes a formal mechanism for identifying cutting-
edge, breakthrough drugs early in the research and development 
process, and provides manufacturers with the opportunity for 
early interaction with the FDA to help streamline approval. In 
addition, the Modernization Act clarifies that data from an 
adequate and well-controlled study, under certain 
circumstances, may constitute substantial evidence of 
effectiveness; establishes time lines for FDA action on IND 
submissions and clinical holds; allows, under certain 
circumstances, abbreviated reports to be submitted in place of 
full reports on clinical and nonclinical studies for inclusion 
in NDAs or biologics license applications; establishes 
requirements regarding agency actions in reviewing 
applications; and, requires the agency to establish independent 
Scientific Advisory Panels to provide advice and 
recommendations on drug and biological product clinical 
investigations and marketing approvals.
    With respect to medical devices, the Modernization Act 
streamlines product approvals by establishing procedures for 
the accreditation of third-party reviewers to review certain 
510(k) premarket notification submissions and to make 
recommendations regarding the initial classification of 
devices. This allows FDA to redirect its resources to priority, 
high-risk devices, while maintaining the critical review of 
products before they enter the marketplace. The Modernization 
Act also eliminates several unnecessary regulatory burdens 
including, among others: allowing investigational device and 
protocol modifications without prior FDA clearance; developing 
specific procedures for investigational plans for FDA's review; 
creating special review procedures for Premarket Approval (PMA) 
applications for devices representing breakthrough 
technologies; establishing accredited third party reviews; 
creating additional 510(k) exemptions; allowing for certain 
new, low risk products to be initially classified according to 
risk, rather than receiving an automatic class III designation; 
establishing certainty of review time frames for 510(k)s and 
PMAs; and providing clarification on the number of required 
clinical investigations required for PMA approval.
    With respect to food products, the Modernization Act 
improves the regulation of food through such reforms, among 
others, as those pertaining to the timetable and regulatory 
authority of the Secretary of Health and Human Services in 
processing health and nutrient content claims, and food contact 
substance notifications.

Legislative History

    In preparation for legislative action on the modernization 
of the Food and Drug Administration, the Subcommittee on Health 
and Environment held two oversight hearings. On April 23, 1997, 
the Subcommittee held a hearing on the Reauthorization of the 
Prescription Drug User Fee Act and FDA Reform. Witnesses 
included representatives of the Food and Drug Administration, 
the pharmaceutical industry, the National Multiple Sclerosis 
Society, the Children's Brain Tumor Foundation and the American 
Academy of Pediatrics, academic experts, and patients.
    On April 30, 1997, the Subcommittee on Health and 
Environment held an oversight hearing on Medical Devices: 
Technological Innovation and Patient/Provider Perspectives. The 
Subcommittee received testimony from representatives of the 
Food and Drug Administration and State and university 
hospitals.
    In connection with these hearings, three bills were 
introduced in the House to amend the Federal Food, Drug and 
Cosmetic Act with respect to the regulation of food, drugs, and 
medical devices.
    On April 23, 1997, H.R. 1411, the Drug and Biological 
Products Modernization Act of 1997, was introduced in the House 
by Mr. Burr and five cosponsors. The bill was referred solely 
to the Committee on Commerce. The purpose of this bill was to 
facilitate the development and approval of new drugs and 
biological products.
    On May 22, 1997, H.R. 1710, the Medical Device Regulatory 
Modernization Act of 1997, was introduced in the House by Mr. 
Barton and 39 cosponsors. The bill was referred solely to the 
Committee on Commerce. The purpose of this bill was to 
facilitate the development, clearance, and use of devices to 
maintain and improve the public health and quality of life of 
the citizens of the United States.
    On September 11, 1997, H.R. 2469, the Food and Nutrition 
Information Reform Act, was introduced in the House by Mr. 
Whitfield and 14 cosponsors. The bill was referred solely to 
the Committee on Commerce. The purpose of this bill was to 
provide for improvements in the regulation of food ingredients, 
nutrient content claims, and health claims.
    S. 830, a companion bill dealing with modernization of the 
Food and Drug Administration, was introduced in the Senate on 
June 5, 1997, by Mr. Jeffords and seven cosponsors. The bill 
was referred to the Senate Committee on Labor and Human 
Resources. On June 18, 1997, the Senate Committee on Labor and 
Human Resources considered S. 830 and ordered the bill reported 
to the Senate, amended. On July 1, 1997, pursuant to the 
unanimous consent agreement reached on June 27, 1997, for 
filing reports during the Senate recess, the Senate Committee 
on Labor and Human Resources reported S. 830 to the Senate (S. 
Rpt. 105-43).
    The Senate considered S. 830 on September 11, September 16, 
September 18, September 19, September 23, and September 24, 
1997. On September 24, 1997, the Senate passed S. 830, amended, 
by a roll call vote of 98 yeas to 2 nays. On September 25, 
1997, S. 830 was received in the House and held at the desk.
    On September 17, 1997, the Subcommittee on Health and 
Environment met in open markup session and approved for Full 
Committee consideration, the following three bills: (1) H.R. 
1411, the Prescription Drug User Fee Reauthorization and Drug 
Regulatory Modernization Act of 1997, amended, by a voice vote; 
(2) H.R. 2469, the Food and Nutrition Information Reform Act of 
1997, amended, by a voice vote; and (3) H.R. 1710, the Medical 
Device Regulatory Modernization Act of 1997, amended, by a 
voice vote.
    On September 25, 1997, the Full Committee met in open 
markup session and ordered H.R. 1411 reported to the House, 
amended, by a roll call vote of 43 yeas to 0 nays. On that same 
day, the Full Committee also ordered H.R. 2469 reported to the 
House, amended, by a roll call vote of 43 yeas to 0 nays. On 
September 26, 1997, the Full Committee met in open markup 
session and ordered H.R. 1710 reported to the House, amended, 
by a voice vote, a quorum being present.
    On October 6, 1997, the Committee on Commerce reported H.R. 
2469 to the House (H. Rpt. 105-306). On October 6, 1997, the 
Committee on Commerce also reported H.R. 1710 to the House (H. 
Rpt. 105-307). On October 7, 1997, the Committee on Commerce 
reported H.R. 1411 to the House (H. Rpt. 105-310).
    On October 7, 1997, the House considered H.R. 1411 under 
Suspension of the Rules and passed the bill, amended, by a 
voice vote. As passed by the House, H.R. 1411 included the 
provisions of three separate bills reported by the Committee on 
Commerce: (1) H.R. 1411, the Prescription Drug User Fee 
Reauthorization and Drug Regulatory Modernization Act of 1997; 
(2) H.R. 2469, the Food and Nutrition Information Reform Act of 
1997; and (3) H.R. 1710, the Medical Device Regulatory 
Modernization Act of 1997.
    On October 7, 1997, the House, by unanimous consent, took 
S. 830 from the desk and passed the bill after striking all 
after the enacting clause and inserting in lieu thereof the 
text of H.R. 1411, as passed by the House. Subsequently, on 
October 7, 1997, H.R. 1411 was laid on the table.
    On October 22, 1997, by unanimous consent, the House 
insisted on its amendment to S. 830, requested a conference 
with the Senate, and appointed conferees. On October 23, 1997, 
the Senate disagreed to the House amendment to S. 830, agreed 
to a conference with the House, and appointed conferees. On 
November 9, 1997, the conference report on S. 830 was filed in 
the House (H. Rpt. 105-399).
    The Senate agreed to the conference report on S. 830 on 
November 9, 1997, by a voice vote. On November 9, 1997, the 
House considered the conference report on S. 830 under 
Suspension of the Rules, and agreed to the conference report by 
a voice vote, clearing the measure for the President.
    On November 13, 1997, by unanimous consent, the Senate 
proceeded to the immediate consideration of S. Con. Res. 69, a 
resolution to correct the enrollment of S. 830, and passed the 
concurrent resolution. S. Con. Res. 69 was received in the 
House on November 13, 1997, and held at the desk. No further 
action was taken on S. Con. Res. 69.
    On November 13, 1997, the House considered H. Con. Res. 
196, a resolution to correct the enrollment of S. 830, under 
Suspension of the Rules, and passed the concurrent resolution 
by a voice vote. H. Con. Res. 196 was received in the Senate on 
November 13, 1997, and referred to the Senate Committee on 
Labor and Human Resources. No further action was taken on H. 
Con. Res. 196.
    S. 830 was presented to the President on November 19, 1997. 
The President signed S. 830 into law on November 21, 1997 
(Public Law 105-115).

                  birth defects prevention act of 1998

                      Public Law 105-168 (S. 419)

    To provide surveillance, research, and services aimed at 
prevention of birth defects, and for other purposes.

Summary

    S. 419 amends the Public Health Service Act to direct the 
Secretary of Health and Human Services (the Secretary), acting 
through the Director of the Centers for Disease Control and 
Prevention, to carry out programs to: (1) collect and analyze, 
and make available data on birth defects in a manner that 
facilitates compliance with this Act, including data on the 
causes of such defects and on the incidence and prevalence of 
such defects; (2) operate regional centers for the conduct of 
applied epidemiological research on the prevention of such 
defects; and (3) provide information and education to the 
public on the prevention of such defects.
    The bill also requires the Secretary, in collecting, 
analyzing, and making available data on birth defects, to: (1) 
collect and analyze data by gender and by racial and ethnic 
group; (2) collect such data from birth and death certificates, 
hospital records, and such other sources as the Secretary 
determines to be appropriate; and (3) encourage States to 
establish or improve programs for the collection and analysis 
of epidemiological data on birth defects and to make the data 
available.
    S. 419 requires the Secretary to report biennially to the 
House Committee on Commerce and the Senate Committee on Labor 
and Human Resources on birth defects, and authorizes 
appropriations for carrying out this program in the following 
amounts: $30 million for Fiscal Year 1999, $40 million for 
Fiscal Year 2000, and such sums as may be necessary for each of 
Fiscal Years 2001 and 2002.

Legislative History

    S. 419 was introduced in the Senate by Mr. Bond and 17 
cosponsors on March 11, 1997. The bill was referred to the 
Senate Committee on Labor and Human Resources.
    On June 12, 1997, by unanimous consent, the Senate 
Committee on Labor and Human Resources was discharged from 
further consideration of S. 419. The Senate then, by unanimous 
consent, proceeded to the immediate consideration of S. 419 and 
passed the bill, amended, on June 12, 1997, by a voice vote.
    On June 16, 1997, S. 419 was received in the House. On June 
17, 1997, S. 419 was referred solely to the Committee on 
Commerce.
    On March 5, 1998, the Chairman of the Committee on Commerce 
sent a letter to the Speaker asking that, in order to expedite 
consideration, the Committee be discharged from further 
consideration of S. 419 and that the bill be scheduled for 
floor consideration under Suspension of the Rules, provided 
that such action would not prejudice the Commerce Committee's 
jurisdictional prerogatives with respect to the legislation.
    On March 10, 1998, the House considered S. 419 under 
Suspension of the Rules, thereby discharging the Committee on 
Commerce from further consideration of S. 419, and passed by 
bill, by a roll call vote of 405 yeas to 2 nays, clearing the 
measure for the President.
    S. 419 was presented to the President on April 17, 1998. 
The President signed S. 419 into law on April 21, 1998 (Public 
Law 105-168).

             transportation equity act for the 21st century

                Public Law 105-178 (H.R. 2400, S. 1173)

                        (Environment Provisions)

    To authorize funds for Federal-aid highways, highway safety 
programs, and transit programs, and for other purposes.

Summary

    Public Law 105-178 includes a number of provisions which 
fall within the jurisdiction of the Committee on Commerce, 
including several dealing with environment related issues. 
Members of the Committee on Commerce were appointed as 
conferees on these provisions and participated in the 
conference negotiations which led to the agreements contained 
in H.R. 2400.
    Title I of Public Law 105-178 contains provisions 
reauthorizing the Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA's) 
Congestion Mitigation and Air Quality program (CMAQ). The CMAQ 
program funds certain State transportation projects designed to 
reduce the emissions of pollutants and thereby increase air 
quality. Title I also contains certain provisions concerning 
planning and management of transportation projects.
    Title VI of Public Law 105-178 contains provisions 
concerning EPA's implementation of the revised ozone and 
particulate matter air quality standards and the regional haze 
program. These provisions ensure that EPA will implement the 
revised standards and the regional haze program in accordance 
with the schedule and principles set forth in the President's 
July 16, 1997, Memorandum.

Legislative History

    On June 18, 1997, the Subcommittee on Health and 
Environment held an oversight hearing on Reauthorization of 
Transportation-Related Air Quality Improvement Programs. At 
that hearing, testimony on CMAQ and other air quality programs 
was received from Federal agencies, associations, and industry.
    H.R. 2400 was introduced in the House on September 4, 1997, 
by Mr. Shuster and three cosponsors. The bill was referred to 
the Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure, and in 
addition to the Committee on the Budget.
    On March 24, 1998, the Committee on Transportation and 
Infrastructure met to consider H.R. 2400, and ordered the bill 
reported to the House, amended, by a roll call vote of 69 yes 
to 0 nays. On March 25, 1998, the Committee on Transportation 
and Infrastructure reported H.R. 2400 to the House (H. Rpt. 
105-467, Part 1). On March 25, 1998, the referral of H.R. 2400 
to the Committee on the Budget was extended for a period ending 
not later than March 27, 1998. On March 25, 1998, H.R. 2400 was 
also referred, sequentially, to the Committee on Ways and Means 
for a period ending not later than March 27, 1998.
    On March 25, 1998, the Chairman of the Committee on 
Commerce sent a letter to the Chairman of the Committee on 
Transportation and Infrastructure indicating that H.R. 2400, as 
ordered reported, included provisions within the jurisdiction 
of the Commerce Committee. The Chairman further stated that, in 
order to expedite consideration of this measure by the House, 
the Committee on Commerce would not seek a sequential referral 
of H.R. 2400, provided such action would not prejudice the 
Commerce Committee's future jurisdictional interests in the 
legislation. On March 25, 1998, the Chairman of the Committee 
on Transportation and Infrastructure sent a letter to the 
Chairman of the Committee on Commerce acknowledging the 
Commerce Committee's jurisdictional concerns and prerogatives 
with respect to H.R. 2400.
    On March 26, 1998, the Committee on Ways and Means 
considered H.R. 2400, and ordered the bill reported to the 
House, amended, by a voice vote.
    On March 27, 1998, the Committee on Transportation and 
Infrastructure filed a supplemental report on H.R. 2400 in the 
House (H. Rpt. 105-467, Part 2). On March 27, 1998, the 
Committee on Ways and Means reported H.R. 2400 to the House (H. 
Rpt. 105-467, Part 3). On March 27, 1998, the Committee on the 
Budget was discharged from further consideration of H.R. 2400.
    On March 31, 1998, the Committee on Rules met and granted a 
rule providing for the consideration of H.R. 2400. The rule was 
filed in the House as H. Res. 405. The House passed H. Res. 405 
on April 1, 1998, by a roll call vote of 357 yeas to 61 nays. 
The House considered H.R. 2400 on April 1, 1998, and passed the 
bill, amended, by a roll call vote of 337 yeas to 80 nays.
    On April 1, 1998, the House also agreed to a unanimous 
consent request if a message arrived from the Senate indicating 
that the Senate had passed H.R. 2400, with an amendment, 
insisted on its amendment, and requested a conference with the 
House, that the House be deemed to have disagreed to the Senate 
amendment, agreed to the conference with the Senate, and that 
the Speaker appointed conferees without any intervening motion. 
The unanimous consent request also provided for a motion to 
instruct conferees to be offered on the House Floor during the 
week of April 21, 1998, and provided that the managers could 
not file a conference report prior to April 22, 1998. H.R. 2400 
was received in the Senate on April 2, 1998, and read twice.
    On September 12, 1997, S. 1173, a companion bill, was 
introduced in the Senate by Mr. Warner and fourteen cosponsors. 
The bill was read twice and referred to the Senate Committee on 
Environment and Public Works. On September 17, 1997, the Senate 
Committee on Environment and Public Works considered S. 1173 
and ordered the bill reported to the Senate, amended. On 
October 1, 1997, the Senate Committee on Environment and Public 
Works reported S. 1173 to the Senate (S. Rpt. 105-95). The 
Senate considered S. 1173 on October 8, October 20, October 21, 
October 22, October 23, October 24, October 28, and October 29, 
1997. On October 29, 1997, S. 1173 was returned to the Senate 
Calendar.
    On February 26, 1998, the Senate began consideration of S. 
1173 again, and considered the bill on February 26, February 
27, March 2, March 3, March 4, March 5, March 6, March 9, March 
10, March 11, and March 12, 1998. On March 12, 1998, the Senate 
adopted an modified committee amendment in the nature of a 
substitute. S. 1173 was then read for the third time and again 
returned to the Senate Calendar. On April 2, 1998, pursuant to 
a unanimous consent request agreed to on March 12, 1998, the 
Senate proceeded to the immediate consideration of H.R. 2400, 
struck all after the enacting clause and inserted in lieu 
thereof the text of S. 1173 as amended by the Senate, and 
passed H.R. 2400. By unanimous consent, the Senate indefinitely 
postponed S. 1173.
    On April 2, 1998, the Senate insisted on its amendment to 
H.R. 2400, requested a conference with the House, and appointed 
conferees. On April 3, 1998, pursuant to the unanimous consent 
agreement of April 1, 1998, the House disagreed to the Senate 
amendment to H.R. 2400, agreed to a conference with the Senate, 
and appointed conferees. On April 22, 1998, the Speaker 
appointed additional conferees from the Committee on Commerce. 
On April 23, 1998, the Speaker appointed additional conferees 
from the Committee on Science. On May 6, 1998, the Speaker 
appointed additional conferees from the Committee on Ways and 
Means and the Committee on the Budget. On May 20, 1998, a 
motion to instruct conferees passed by a roll call vote of 422 
yeas to 0 nays. On May 21, 1998, a motion to instruct conferees 
was defeated by a roll call vote of 77 yeas to 332 nays, with 1 
voting present. On May 21, 1998, a second motion to instruct 
conferees also was defeated by a roll call vote of 156 yeas to 
251 nays, with 2 voting present. On May 22, 1998, the 
conference report on H.R. 2400 was filed in the House (H. Rpt. 
104-550).
    On May 22, 1998, the Committee on Rules met and granted a 
rule providing for the consideration of the conference report 
on H.R. 2400. The rule was filed in the House as H. Res. 449. 
On May 22, 1998, the House passed H. Res. 449 by a roll call 
vote of 359 yeas to 29 nays. On May 22, 1998, the House also 
agreed to the conference report on H.R. 2400 by a roll call 
vote of 397 yeas to 86 nays.
    The Senate agreed to the conference report on H.R. 2400 on 
May 22, 1998 by a roll call vote of 85 yeas to 15 nays, 
clearing the measure for the President.
    H.R. 2400 was presented to the President on May 28, 1998. 
On June 9, 1998, the President signed H.R. 2400 into law 
(Public Law 105-178).

       national bone marrow registry reauthorization act of 1998

                     Public Law 105-196 (H.R. 2202)

    To amend the Public Health Service Act to revise and extend 
the bone marrow donor program, and for other purposes.

Summary

    More than 30,000 children and adults in the U.S. are 
diagnosed each year with leukemia, aplastic anemia, or other 
life-threatening diseases. For many, the only hope for survival 
is a marrow transplant. The National Marrow Donor Program was 
designed to coordinate the national matching of allogeneic 
unrelated donors and recipients. Under the Public Health 
Service Act, the program is charged with establishing a 
national registry of voluntary bone marrow donors. To date, the 
registry contains nearly 3 million volunteers willing to become 
marrow donors if matched, and has facilitated more than 6,000 
bone marrow transplants.
    H.R. 2202 amends Section 379 of the Public Health Service 
Act (42 U.S.C. 274k) to reauthorize the National Bone Marrow 
Donor Registry through Fiscal Year 2003. The bill also includes 
provisions to: (1) reform of the composition and terms of 
office for the Board of Directors; and (2) increase recruitment 
of potential donors. Finally, H.R. 2202 formally establishes an 
Office of Patient Advocacy and Case Management within the 
program to provide individualized services for patients 
requesting assistance. The office will provide information and 
coordinate all aspects of the search and transplantation 
process to ensure the needs of the patient are being met.

Legislative History

    On July 17, 1997, Mr. Young of Florida and 64 cosponsors 
introduced H.R. 2202 in the House. The bill was referred solely 
to the Committee on Commerce.
    On April 23, 1998, the Subcommittee on Health and 
Environment held a joint hearing with the Senate Committee on 
Labor and Human Resources Subcommittee on Public Health and 
Safety on ``The Gift of Life'': Increasing Bone Marrow Donation 
and Transplantation. Testimony was received from a Member of 
Congress, representatives of the Department of Health and Human 
Services, the National Institutes of Health, the National 
Marrow Donor Program, and the American Association of Blood 
Banks, and patients.
    On May 12, 1998, the Subcommittee on Health and Environment 
met in open markup session to consider H.R. 2202, and approved 
the bill for Full Committee consideration, amended, by a voice 
vote.
    The Full Committee met in open markup session on May 14, 
1998, to consider H.R. 2202 and ordered the bill reported to 
the House, as amended, by a voice vote, a quorum being present. 
The Committee on Commerce reported H.R. 2202 to the House on 
May 18, 1998 (H. Rpt. 105-538).
    The House considered H.R. 2202 under Suspension of the 
Rules on May 19, 1998, and passed the bill, by a voice vote.
    On May 20, 1998, H.R. 2202 was received in the Senate, read 
twice, and referred to the Senate Committee on Labor and Human 
Resources. On June 24, 1998, by unanimous consent, the Senate 
Committee on Labor and Human Resources was discharged from 
further consideration of H.R. 2202. By unanimous consent, the 
Senate then proceeded to the immediate consideration of H.R. 
2202 and passed the bill, without amendment, clearing the 
measure for the President.
    H.R. 2202 was presented to the President on July 8, 1998. 
The President signed H.R. 2202 into law on July 16, 1998 
(Public Law 105-196).

       mammography quality standards reauthorization act of 1998

                 Public Law 105-248 (H.R. 4382, S. 537)

    To amend the Public Health Service Act to revise and extend 
the program for mammography quality standards.

Summary

    H.R. 4382 reauthorizes programs for inspection and 
certification of mammography facilities. It also provides for 
direct patient notification of all mammography examinations, 
requiring that ``a summary of the written report shall be 
provided to every patient in terms easily understood by a lay 
person;'' and permits the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to 
conduct a limited demonstration project to determine the 
feasibility of inspecting high-performing mammography 
facilities on a less than annual basis.
    In addition, H.R. 4382 contains provisions to: (1) clarify 
the responsibility of the mammography facility to retain 
mammogram records so that women have the ability to obtain the 
original of their mammograms; (2) clarify that both State and 
local government agencies have inspection authority; and (3) 
ensure that patients and referring physicians will be advised 
of any mammogram facility deficiencies.

Legislative History

    S. 537, the Mammography Quality Standards Reauthorization 
Act, was introduced in the Senate on April 9, 1997, by Ms. 
Mikulski and 42 cosponsors. The bill was referred to the Senate 
Committee on Labor and Human Resources. On November 9, 1997, by 
unanimous consent, the Senate Committee on Labor and Human 
Resources was discharged from further consideration of S. 537. 
By unanimous consent, the Senate then proceeded to the 
immediate consideration of S. 537 and passed the bill on 
November 9, 1997. On November 12, 1997, S. 537 was received in 
the House and referred solely to the Committee on Commerce. No 
further action was taken on S. 537.
    The Subcommittee on Health and Environment held a hearing 
on May 8, 1998, on the Reauthorization of the Mammography 
Quality Standards Act. Witnesses included representatives of 
the Food and Drug Administration, the General Accounting 
Office, cancer awareness organizations, and the American 
College of Radiology.
    On August 3, 1998, the Subcommittee on Health and 
Environment met in open markup session to consider a Committee 
Print entitled the ``Mammography Quality Standards 
Reauthorization Act of 1998'', and approved the introduction of 
a clean bill to reflect the Committee Print, as amended by the 
Subcommittee, for Full Committee consideration, by a voice 
vote. On August 3, 1998, Mr. Bliley and 23 cosponsors 
introduced the clean bill in the House as H.R. 4382. The bill 
was referred solely to the Committee on Commerce.
    On August 5, 1998, the Full Committee met in open markup 
session to consider H.R. 4382, and ordered the bill reported to 
the House, amended, by a voice vote, a quorum being present. 
The Committee reported H.R. 4382 to the House on September 14, 
1998 (H. Rpt. 105-713).
    The House considered H.R. 4382 under Suspension of the 
Rules on September 15, 1998, and passed the bill by a roll call 
vote of 401 yeas to 1 nay.
    On September 16, 1998, H.R. 4382 was received in the 
Senate, read twice, and placed on the Senate Calendar. On 
September 25, 1998, by unanimous consent, the Senate proceeded 
to the immediate consideration of H.R. 4382 and passed the 
bill, clearing the measure for the President.
    H.R. 4382 was presented to the President on October 1, 
1998. The President signed H.R. 4382 into law on October 9, 
1998 (Public Law 105-248).

 strom thurmond national defense authorization act for fiscal year 1999

            Public Law 105-261 (H.R. 3616, S. 2057, S. 2060)

                          (Health Provisions)

    To authorize appropriations for fiscal year 1999 for 
military activities of the Department of Defense, for military 
construction, and for defense activities of the Department of 
Energy, to prescribe personnel strengths for such fiscal year 
for the Armed Forces, and for other purposes.

Summary

    Public Law 105-261 includes a number of provisions which 
fall within the jurisdiction of the Committee on Commerce, 
including a number of provisions dealing with health related 
issues. These provisions include: (1) the expansion of 
dependent eligibility retiree dental programs: (2) the 
provision of health care for military retirees and their 
dependents comparable to health care provided under the TRICARE 
program; (3) a plan for the redesign of the military pharmacy 
system; (4) transitional authority to provide continued health 
care coverage for certain persons unaware of loss of CHAMPUS 
eligibility; (5) payment of claims for provision of health care 
under the TRICARE program for which a third party may be 
liable; (6) inflation adjustments of premium amounts for the 
dependents dental program; and (7) a report on the 
implementation of enrollment-based capitation for funding for 
military medical treatment facilities. Members of the Committee 
on Commerce were appointed as conferees on these provisions and 
participated in the conference negotiations which led to the 
agreements contained in H.R. 3616.

Legislative History

    H.R. 3616 was introduced in the House by Representatives 
Spence and Skelton on April 1, 1998, and referred solely to the 
Committee on National Security. The Committee on National 
Security met to consider H.R. 3616 on May 6, 1998, and ordered 
the bill reported to the House, amended, by a voice vote. On 
May 12, 1998, the Committee on National Security reported H.R. 
3616 to the House (H. Rpt. 105-532).
    The Committee on Rules met on May 14, 1998, and granted a 
rule providing for the consideration of H.R. 3616. The rule was 
filed in the House as H. Res. 435. On May 19, 1998, the House 
passed H. Res. 435 by a voice vote. On May 19, 1998, the 
Committee on Rules met and granted a second rule providing for 
the further consideration of H.R. 3616. The rule was filed in 
House as H. Res. 441. On May 20, 1998, the House passed H. Res. 
441 by a roll call vote of 304 yeas to 108 nays.
    The House considered H.R. 3616 on May 19, May 20, and May 
21, 1998; and on May 21, 1998, passed the bill, amended, by a 
roll call vote of 357 yeas to 60 nays. On May 22, 1998, H.R. 
3616 was received in the Senate, read twice, and placed on the 
Senate Calendar.
    On May 11, 1998, the Senate Committee on Armed Services 
reported an original measure to the Senate, which was 
introduced in the Senate by Mr. Thurmond as S. 2060 and placed 
on the Senate Calendar (S. Rpt. 105-189). On May 11, 1998, the 
Senate Committee on Armed Services reported an original measure 
to the Senate, which was introduced in the Senate by Mr. 
Thurmond as S. 2057 and placed on the Senate Calendar (No 
Written Report).
    The Senate considered S. 2057 on May 13, May 14, June 18, 
June 19, June 22, June 23, June 24, and June 25, 1998. On June 
25, 1998, the Senate passed S. 2057, amended, by a roll call 
vote of 88 yeas to 4 nays. S. 2057 was received in the House on 
July 20, 1998, and held at the desk. On October 21, 1998, S. 
2057 was referred to the House Committee on National Security. 
No further action was taken on S. 2057 in the 105th Congress.
    On June 25, 1998, the Senate, by unanimous consent, took 
H.R. 3616 from the Senate Calendar and passed the bill, amended 
with the text of S. 2057 as passed by the Senate. The Senate 
insisted on its amendment to H.R. 3616, requested a conference 
with the House, and appointed conferees.
    On July 22, 1998, the House disagreed to the Senate 
amendment to H.R. 3616, agreed to a conference with the Senate, 
and appointed conferees. Members of the Committee on Commerce 
were appointed as conferees. On July 22, and July 23, 1998, the 
House considered a motion to instruct the conferees. On July 
23, 1998, the House agreed to a motion to instruct the 
conferees by a roll call vote of 424 yeas to 0 nays, with 1 
voting present. The House also agreed to a motion to close 
portions of the conference by a roll call vote of 412 yeas to 5 
nays.
    The conference report on H.R. 3616 was filed in the House 
on September 22, 1998 (H. Rpt. 105-736).
    The Committee on Rules met on September 23, 1998, and 
granted a rule providing for the consideration of the 
conference report on H.R. 3616. The rule was filed in the House 
as H. Res. 549.
    On September 24, 1998, the House passed H. Res. 549 by a 
voice vote. The House agreed to the conference report by a roll 
call vote of 373 yeas to 50 nays on September 24, 1998. The 
Senate considered the conference report on September 30, and 
October 1, 1998; and on October 1, 1998, the Senate agreed to 
the conference report by a roll call vote of 96 yeas to 2 nays.
    H.R. 3616 was presented to the President on October 6, 
1998. The President signed H.R. 3616 into law on October 17, 
1998 (Public Law 105-261).

         departments of veterans affairs and housing and urban

          development, and independent agencies appropriations

                               act, 1999

                Public Law 105-276 (H.R. 4194, S. 2168)

                        (Environment Provisions)

    Making appropriations for the Departments of Veterans 
Affairs and Housing and Urban Development, and for sundry 
independent agencies, boards, commissions, corporations, and 
offices for the fiscal year ending September 30, 1999, and for 
other purposes.

Summary

    Public Law 105-276 provides appropriations for Fiscal Year 
1999 for the Departments of Veterans Affairs and Housing and 
Urban Development, and for sundry independent agencies, boards, 
commissions, corporations, and offices. Additionally, the Act 
includes a number of provisions falling with the jurisdiction 
of the Committee on Commerce, including several provisions 
dealing with environment related issues.
    Public Law 105-276 contains a provision regarding the 
Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA's) ability to regulate 
so-called ``greenhouse'' gasses. The Clean Air Act does not 
currently authorize EPA to regulate emissions based on climate 
change concerns. Title VI of the Clean Air Act contains limited 
authority to publish the global warming potential of substances 
listed on the basis of their ozone-depletion potential, but 
such authority is specifically limited and cannot be construed 
to form the basis of additional regulation. Otherwise, Subtitle 
B of Appendix A of the Clean Air Act requires the study, but 
not regulation of, carbon dioxide.
    Public Law 105-276 also prohibits EPA from using any 
appropriated funds to implement the Kyoto Protocol, adopted on 
December 11, 1997, in Kyoto, Japan at the Third Conference of 
Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate 
Change, until that treaty is ratified by the Senate pursuant to 
Article II, section 2, clause 2, of the United States 
Constitution. The President has not submitted the Kyoto 
Protocol to the Senate for ratification. Accordingly, this 
provision simply reflects the historical system of 
Constitutional checks and balances between the Executive and 
Legislative branches regarding treaties with foreign nations. 
The funding limitation contained in Public Law 105-276 does not 
apply to the conduct of education activities and seminars by 
EPA.
    Members of the Committee on Commerce worked with the 
Members of the House and Senate Appropriations Committees to 
develop these provisions.

Legislative History

    H.R. 4194 was introduced in the House on July 8, 1998, by 
Mr. Lewis, as an original measure, and reported to the House on 
the same day by the Committee on Appropriations (H. Rpt. 105-
610). The House considered H.R. 4194 on July 17, July 23, and 
July 29, 1998. On July 29, 1998, the House passed H.R. 4194, 
amended, by a roll call vote of 259 yeas to 164 nays.
    On June 12, 1998, the Senate Committee on Appropriations 
reported S. 2168, a companion bill, to the Senate (S. Rpt. 105-
216). The Senate considered S. 2168 on July 6, July 7, July 16, 
and July 17, 1998. On July 17, 1998, the Senate passed S. 2168, 
amended, by a voice vote.
    On July 30, 1998, H.R. 4194 was received in the Senate. 
Pursuant to an unanimous consent agreement reached on July 16, 
1998, the Senate proceeded to the immediate consideration of 
H.R. 4194; passed the bill amended with the text of S. 2168, as 
passed by the Senate on July 17, 1998; insisted on the Senate 
amendment to H.R. 4194; requested a conference with the House; 
and appointed conferees. Passage of S. 2168 was then vitiated 
and the bill was indefinitely postponed.
    On September 15, 1998, the House disagreed to the Senate 
amendment to H.R. 4194, agreed to a conference with the Senate, 
and appointed conferees. The House, on September 15, 1998, also 
agreed by a roll call vote of 405 yeas to 0 nays to a motion to 
instruct the conferees. The conference report on H.R. 4194 was 
filed in the House on October 5, 1998 (H. Rpt. 105-769). On 
October 6, 1998, the House agreed to the conference report on 
H.R. 4194 by a roll call vote of 409 yeas to 14 nays. The 
Senate agreed to the conference report on H.R. 4194 on October 
8, 1998, by a roll call vote of 96 yeas to 1 nay.
    On October 10, 1998, H.R. 4194 was presented to the 
President. On October 21, 1998, the President signed H.R. 4194 
into law (Public Law 105-276).

  omnibus consolidated and emergency supplemental appropriations act, 
                                  1999

                Public Law 105-277 (H.R. 4328, S. 2307)

                  (Environment and Health Provisions)

    To make omnibus consolidated and emergency appropriations 
for the fiscal year ending September 30, 1999, and for other 
purposes.

Summary

    H.R. 4328 served as an omnibus continuing appropriations 
measure for those Federal agencies that did not have individual 
Fiscal Year 1999 appropriations measures enacted into law. 
Affected agencies and entities included the Departments of 
Agriculture, Justice, Commerce, State, Interior, Labor, Health 
and Human Services, Education, Transportation, and the 
Treasury. The bill also contained other Federal appropriations 
for the District of Columbia, foreign operations, military 
readiness, anti-terrorism, Year 2000 conversion of Federal 
information technology systems, counter-drug activities and 
interdiction, and other emergencies. Additionally, a number of 
legislative provisions, some within the jurisdiction of the 
Committee on Commerce, were included in H.R. 4328.

                           Environment Issues

    Public Law 105-277 includes, in Division A-Omnibus 
Consolidated Appropriations, Agriculture, Rural Development, 
Food and Drug Administration, and Related Agencies 
Appropriations Act, 1999, Title VII-General Provisions, Section 
764, provisions which amend Section 604 of the Clean Air Act 
(42 U.S.C. 7401 et seq). Section 764 adds a new subsection (h) 
to section 604 of the Clean Air Act and new subsections (5) and 
(6) to section 604(d) and new subsection (3) to section 604(e) 
of the Clean Air Act. These provisions address the phaseout of 
methyl bromide under Title VI of the Clean Air Act and the 
Montreal Protocol, the international treaty addressing ozone-
depleting substances.
    Under section 764, notwithstanding subsection (d) and 
section 604(b) of the Clean Air Act, the Administrator of the 
Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) shall not terminate the 
production of methyl bromide prior to January 1, 2005. The EPA 
Administrator is also required to promulgate rules for 
reductions in, and termination of the production, importation, 
and consumption of methyl bromide under a schedule that is not 
more stringent than the phaseout schedule in effect under the 
Montreal Protocol as of the date of enactment of section 
604(h).
    In addition, section 764 provides that, to the extent 
consistent with the Montreal Protocol, the EPA Administrator 
shall exempt the production, importation, and consumption of 
methyl bromide for the fumigation of certain commodities and 
for purposes of compliance with any international, Federal, 
State, or local sanitation or food protection standard. Section 
764 also provides that, to the extent consistent with the 
Montreal Protocol and after specified consultations, the EPA 
Administrator may exempt the production, importation, or 
consumption of methyl bromide for critical uses.
    Finally, section 764 provides that, notwithstanding 
phaseout dates established by section 604(h) and consistent 
with the Montreal Protocol, the EPA Administrator may authorize 
the production of limited quantities of methyl bromide, solely 
for use in certain developing countries that are Parties to the 
Copenhagen Amendments to the Montreal Protocol.
    Members of the Committee on Commerce reviewed these changes 
to the Clean Air Act and recommended certain changes to the 
statutory language prior to its adoption as part of the 
conference report on H.R. 4368 (H. Rpt. 105-825).

                             Health Issues

Transplant Organ Allocation

    Public Law 105-277 includes, in Division A-Omnibus 
Consolidated Appropriations, Departments of Labor, Health and 
Human Services, and Education, and Related Agencies 
Appropriations Act, 1999, Title II-Department of Health and 
Human Services, Section 213, provisions which would delay the 
Administration's regulations that would radically alter the way 
cadaveric organs are allocated to those needing transplants. 
Under section 213, the Institute of Medicine is tasked with 
reviewing the complex issues surrounding organ allocation and 
issuing a report to Congress by not later than May 1, 1999.

Substance Abuse and Mental Health Block Grants

    Public Law 105-277 includes, in Division A-Omnibus 
Consolidated Appropriations, Departments of Labor, Health and 
Human Services, and Education, and Related Agencies 
Appropriations Act, 1999, Title II-Department of Health and 
Human Services, Section 218, provisions that allow funds 
allocated to the States for the Substance Abuse Block Grant and 
the Mental Health Block Grant to be allocated according to 
current law which would incorporate the Secretary of Health and 
Human Services' decision to change the wage proxy to the use of 
nonmanufacturing wages. This section also contains a small 
State minimum and hold harmless provision for States that would 
have experienced reductions due to the change in formula.

Child Abuse Notification under Title X of Public Health Service Act

    Public Law 105-277 includes, in Division A-Omnibus 
Consolidated Appropriations, Departments of Labor, Health and 
Human Services, and Education, and Related Agencies 
Appropriations Act, 1999, Title II-Department of Health and 
Human Services, Section 219, provisions which state that, 
notwithstanding any other provision of law, no provider of 
service under Title X of the Public Health Service Act shall be 
exempt from any State law requiring notification or the 
reporting of child abuse, child molestation, sexual abuse, 
rape, or incest.

National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine

    Public Law 105-277 includes, in Division A-Omnibus 
Consolidated Appropriations, Departments of Labor, Health and 
Human Services, and Education, and Related Agencies 
Appropriations Act, 1999, Title VI-National Center for 
Complementary and Alternative Medicine, legislative language to 
establish the National Center for Complementary and Alternative 
Medicine. The Center's primary purpose is to conduct and 
support basic and applied research to examine the safety and 
efficacy of alternative treatments. The Center shall conduct or 
support the following activities: (1) outcomes research and 
investigations; (2) epidemiological studies; (3) health 
services research; (4) basic science research; (5) clinical 
trials; and (6) other appropriate research and investigational 
activities.

State Children's Health Insurance Program

    Public Law 105-277 includes, in Division A-Omnibus 
Consolidated Appropriations, Departments of Labor, Health and 
Human Services, and Education, and Related Agencies 
Appropriations Act, 1999, Title VII-Miscellaneous Provisions, 
Section 707, provisions which require that the Health Care 
Financing Administration (HCFA) use the census count and cost 
factors published on September 12, 1997, in the Federal 
Register for the calculation of block grant funds in the State 
Children's Health Insurance Program (S-CHIP).

Mastectomy Coverage

    Public Law 105-277 includes, in Division A-Omnibus 
Consolidated Appropriations, Departments of Labor, Health and 
Human Services, and Education, and Related Agencies 
Appropriations Act, 1999, Title IX-Women's Health and Cancer 
Rights, provisions which mandate that group health plans, and 
health insurance issuers providing mastectomy coverage shall 
provide, in a case of a participant or beneficiary who is 
receiving benefits in connection with a mastectomy and who 
elects breast reconstruction in connection with such 
mastectomy, coverage for: (1) all stages of reconstruction of 
the breast on which the mastectomy has been performed; (2) 
surgery and reconstruction of the other breast to produce a 
symmetrical appearance; and (3) prostheses and physical 
complications of mastectomy, including lymphedemas; in a manner 
determined in consultation with the attending physician and the 
patient. Additionally, this coverage may be subject to annual 
deductibles and coinsurance provisions as deemed appropriate 
and consistent with those established for other benefits under 
the plan or coverage.

Vaccine Injury Compensation Program

    Title XV, Division C-Other Matters, of Public Law 105-277 
makes several modifications in the Vaccine Injury Compensation 
Program. Section 1502 strikes the provision under current law 
that required that a plaintiff must incur unreimbursable 
expenses due in whole or in part to an illness, disability, or 
injury caused by the administration of a vaccine in an amount 
greater than $1,000. Section 1503 includes the Rotavirus 
Gastroenteritis as a taxable vaccine for purposes of the 
vaccine compensation fund. Section 1504 makes technical changes 
in the structure of the vaccine injury compensation trust fund.

Drug Demand Reduction Act

    Public Law 105-277 includes, in Division D-Drug Demand 
Reduction Act, a modified version of text of H.R. 4550, which 
passed the House on September 16, 1998, by a roll call vote of 
396 yeas to 9 nays. Division D establishes programs to 
significantly reduce the incidence of substance abuse through 
restricting the demand for illegal drugs and the improper use 
of legal drugs. The legislation also provides grants to support 
the efforts of parent organizations to develop and promote 
efforts to reduce illegal drug use among children in their 
communities, incentives for the approval of anti-addiction 
drugs, and medical education through health professionals to 
prevent, diagnose, and treat substance abuse cases.

Methamphetamine Trafficking Penalties

    Public Law 105-277 includes, in Division F-Methamphetamine 
Trafficking Penalty Enhancement Act of 1998, provisions to 
increase penalties for the possession, distribution, and import 
of methamphetamines.

Medicare Home Health

    Public Law 105-277 includes, in Division J-Revenues and 
Medicare, Title V-Medicare-Related Provisions, Subtitle A-Home 
Health, changes to the payment system for Medicare's home 
health care benefit as defined in the Balanced Budget Act of 
1997 (P.L. 105-33). Subtitle A delays the implementation of the 
prospective payment system until October 1, 2000, and delays an 
across-the-board 15 percent reduction in payments to home 
health agencies until that date.
    Subtitle A also allows for periodic interim payments until 
implementation of the prospective payment system. This action 
is expected to provide equity to those agencies which have low-
cost, low-utilization practices relative to other agencies, by 
increasing the per beneficiary limits. Those agencies below the 
national median per beneficiary limit will have their limit 
increased by \1/3\ of the difference between their limit and 
the national median.
    In addition, Subtitle A increases payments to ``new'' 
agencies whose first full year cost report began after October 
1, 1993, by two percent, and establishes that agencies opening 
after October 1, 1998, will have per beneficiary limits equal 
to 75 percent of the wage adjusted national median (calculated 
with a two percent reduction).
    Subtitle A also reduces the home health market basket 
update for Fiscal Years 2000, 2001, 2002, and 2003, by 1.1 
percentage points. Despite the increase in Medicare Part B 
expenditures, Subtitle A excludes these costs from the 
calculation of the beneficiary monthly premium until the 
prospective payment system is implemented.
    Finally, Subtitle A requires several reports on the 
prospective payment system summarizing research conducted by 
the Secretary of Health and Human Services to be submitted to 
the Congress so that implementation of the new payment system 
is not further delayed. The policies contained in the Act were 
carefully designed to meet administrative restrictions relating 
to the Year 2000.

Medicare Fraud and Abuse

    Public Law 105-277 includes, in Division J-Revenues and 
Medicare, Title V-Medicare-Related Provisions, Subtitle B-Other 
Medicare-Related Provisions, Section 5201, authority for the 
Department of Health and Human Services Office of the Inspector 
General to promulgate a rule authorizing exceptions to the 
fraud and abuse provisions. It places limits on the Inspector 
General's safe harbor authority relating to providers or health 
care facilities providing Medicare supplemental coverage to 
end-stage renal disease beneficiaries. The duration of the safe 
harbor authority for this particular issue will be limited to a 
two year period which commences on the date that the rule is 
promulgated, stipulating that the Comptroller General shall 
conduct a study that compares any disproportionate impact on 
specific issuers of the purchase of Medicare supplemental 
policies for end stage renal disease patients. Section 5201 
also requires the Comptroller General to submit recommendations 
on whether the Inspector General's authority to issue such 
exceptions should be extended.

Medicare Payment Advisory Commission

    Public Law 105-277 includes, in Division J-Revenues and 
Medicare, Title V-Medicare-Related Provisions, Subtitle B-Other 
Medicare-Related Provisions, Section 5202, provisions to 
increase the number of commissioners appointed to Medicare 
Payment Advisory Commission to seventeen. The addition of two 
members will enable the Commission to reflect more fully the 
diversity of backgrounds and interests in the health policy 
community.

Legislative History

    On July 22, 1998, the Committee on Appropriations ordered 
reported an original measure to the House, which was introduced 
in the House on July 24, 1998, as H.R. 4328. On July 24, 1998, 
the Committee on Appropriations reported H.R. 4328 to the House 
(H. Rpt. 105-648).
    The Committee on Rules met on July 28, 1998, and granted a 
rule providing for the consideration of H.R. 4328. The rule was 
filed in the House as H. Res. 510. On July 29, 1998, the House 
passed H. Res. 510 by a voice vote.
    The House considered H.R. 4328 on July 29 and July 30, 
1998; and on July 30, 1998, passed the bill, amended, by a roll 
call vote of 391 yeas to 25 nays. H.R. 4328 was received in the 
Senate on July 30, 1998.
    On July 14, 1998, the Senate Committee on Appropriations 
ordered reported an original measure to the Senate as the 
Senate companion bill, which was introduced in the Senate by 
Mr. Shelby on July 15, 1998 as S. 2307. The Senate Committee on 
Appropriations reported S. 2307 to the Senate on July 15, 1998 
(S. Rpt. 105-249). The Senate considered S. 2307 on July 23 and 
July 24, 1998. On July 24, 1998, by a roll call vote of 90 yeas 
to 1 nay, the Senate passed S. 3207, amended.
    On July 30, 1998, pursuant to a unanimous consent request 
agreed to on July 23, 1998, the Senate proceeded to the 
immediate consideration of H.R. 4328, struck all after the 
enacting clause and inserted in lieu thereof the text of S. 
2307, as passed by the Senate, and passed H.R. 4328, as 
amended. The Senate then insisted on its amendment to H.R. 
4328, requested a conference with the House, and appointed 
conferees. Finally, on July 30, 1998, the Senate vitiated 
passage of S. 2307 and indefinitely postponed further 
consideration of that bill.
    On September 15, 1998, the House disagreed to the Senate 
amendment to H.R. 4328, agreed to a conference with the Senate, 
and appointed conferees. The House, on September 15, 1998, also 
agreed to a motion to instruct conferees by a roll call vote of 
249 yeas to 161 nays. The conference report on H.R. 4328 was 
filed in the House on October 19, 1998 (H. Rpt. 105-825).
    The Committee on Rules met on October 20, 1998, and granted 
a rule providing for the consideration of the conference report 
on H.R. 4328. The rule was filed in the House as H. Res. 605. 
On October 20, 1998, the House passed H. Res. 605 by a roll 
call vote of 333 yeas to 88 nays.
    The House agreed to the conference report on H.R. 4328 by a 
roll call vote of 333 yeas to 95 nays on October 20, 1998. The 
Senate agreed to the conference report by a roll call vote of 
65 yeas to 29 nays on October 21, 1998.
    H.R. 4328 was presented to the President on October 21, 
1998. The President signed H.R. 4328 into law on October 21, 
1998 (Public Law 105-277).

                   border smog reduction act of 1998

                      Public Law 105-286 (H.R. 8)

    To amend the Clean Air Act to deny entry into the United 
States of certain foreign motor vehicles that do not comply 
with State laws governing motor vehicle emissions, and for 
other purposes.

Summary

    Public Law 105-286 amends the Clean Air Act to add a new 
subsection (h) to section 183 (42 U.S.C. 7511b). Under 
subsection (h), certain noncommercial vehicles registered in a 
foreign country will be denied entry into covered ozone 
nonattainment areas, if State law requires the inspection and 
maintenance of such vehicles and such vehicles attempt to enter 
the covered ozone nonattainment area more than twice in a 
single calendar-month period without complying with applicable 
inspection and maintenance laws. Subsection (h) further 
provides for monetary sanctions for repeated violations or 
attempted violations and allows a State to design an 
alternative approach to the prohibitions contained in the 
subsection, if such an alternative approach is approved by the 
President. Subsection (h) additionally requires a study by the 
General Accounting Office of the potential impact of the new 
subsection (h) compared with the increase in commercial vehicle 
traffic resulting from the implementation of the North American 
Free Trade Agreement.

Legislative History

    H.R. 8 was introduced in the House by Mr. Bilbray and seven 
cosponsors on January 7, 1997. The bill was referred solely to 
the Committee on Commerce.
    On November 18, 1997, the Subcommittee on Health and 
Environment held an oversight field hearing in San Diego, 
California, on transborder air pollution and the impact of 
commuter vehicles in border regions. The Subcommittee received 
testimony from Federal, State and local officials and citizen 
organizations with respect to H.R. 8, and conducted a site 
visit to the San Ysidro border crossing between Southern 
California and Mexico.
    On June 19, 1998, the Subcommittee on Health and 
Environment met in open markup session and approved H.R. 8, 
amended, for Full Committee consideration by a voice vote.
    On June 24, 1998, the Full Committee met in open markup 
session to consider H.R. 8 and ordered the bill reported to the 
House, amended, by a voice vote, a quorum being present. The 
Committee on Commerce reported H.R. 8 to the House on July 20, 
1998 (H. Rpt. 105-634).
    The House considered H.R. 8 under Suspension of the Rules 
on July 20, 1998, and passed the bill by a voice vote.
    On July 21, 1998, H.R. 8 was received in the Senate, read 
twice, and referred to the Senate Committee on Environment and 
Public Works. On September 23, 1998, the Senate Committee on 
Environment and Public Works ordered H.R. 8 reported to the 
Senate. The Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works 
reported H.R. 8 to the Senate on September 28, 1998 (S. Rpt. 
105-355).
    On October 5, 1998, by unanimous consent, the Senate 
proceeded to the immediate consideration of H.R. 8 and passed 
the bill, amended.
    On October 7, 1998, H.R. 8 was returned to the House. The 
House considered H.R. 8 under Suspension of the Rules on 
October 7, 1998, and agreed to the Senate amendment to H.R. 8 
by a voice vote, clearing the measure for the President.
    H.R. 8 was presented to the President on October 15, 1998. 
The President signed H.R. 8 into law on October 27, 1998 
(Public Law 105-286).

noncitizen benefit clarification and other technical amendments act of 
                                  1998

                     Public Law 105-306 (H.R. 4558)

    To make technical amendments to clarify the provision of 
benefits for noncitizens, and to improve the provision of 
unemployment insurance, child support, and supplemental 
security income benefits.

Summary

    Public Law 105-306 amends the Personal Responsibility and 
Work Opportunity Reconciliation Act of 1996 (PRAWORA). The Act 
provides that the new restrictions imposed on alien eligibility 
for Supplemental Security Income under Title XVI of the Social 
Security Act (SSA) (and thus Medicaid under SSA Title XIX) 
shall not apply to a nonqualified alien who was receiving such 
benefits on August 22, 1996 (the date of enactment of PRAWORA).

Legislative History

    H.R. 4558 was introduced in the House by Representatives 
Shaw and Levin on September 14, 1998. The bill was referred to 
the Committee on Ways and Means, and in addition to the 
Committee on Commerce.
    The Committee on Ways and Means considered H.R. 4558 on 
September 18, 1998, and ordered the bill reported to the House, 
amended, by a voice vote. The Committee on Ways and Means 
reported H.R. 4558 to the House on September 22, 1998 (H. Rpt. 
105-735, Part 1). On September 22, 1998, the referral of H.R. 
4558 to the Committee on Commerce was extended for a period 
ending not later than September 23, 1998.
    On September 22, 1998, the Chairman of the Committee on 
Commerce sent a letter to the Chairman of the Committee on Ways 
and Means indicating that, in order to expedite consideration 
of H.R. 4558, the Committee on Commerce would agree to waive 
consideration of the bill, provided such action would not 
prejudice the Commerce Committee's future jurisdictional 
concerns and prerogatives with respect to H.R. 4558.
    On September 22, 1998, the Chairman of the Committee on 
Ways and Means sent a letter to the Chairman of the Committee 
on Commerce acknowledging the Commerce Committee's 
jurisdictional concerns and prerogatives with respect to H.R. 
4558 and stating that a Manager's Amendment would be offered on 
the House floor to clarify the treatment of Medicaid benefits.
    The House considered H.R. 4558 under Suspension of the 
Rules on September 23, 1998, thereby discharging the Committee 
on Commerce from further consideration of the bill. The House 
passed H.R. 4558, amended, by a voice vote.
    On September 24, 1998, H.R. 4558 was received in the Senate 
and read twice. On October 8, 1998, by unanimous consent, the 
Senate proceeded to the immediate consideration of H.R. 4558 
and passed the bill, without amendment, clearing the measure 
for the President.
    H.R. 4558 was presented to the President on October 20, 
1998. The President signed H.R. 4558 into law on October 28, 
1998 (Public Law 105-306).

                   torture victims relief act of 1998

                     Public Law 105-320 (H.R. 4309)

    To provide a comprehensive program of support for victims 
of torture.

Summary

    H.R. 4309 amends the Foreign Assistance Act of 1961 to 
authorize the President to provide assistance in the form of 
grants to treatment centers and programs in foreign countries 
that are carrying out projects or activities specifically 
designed to treat victims of torture for the physical and 
psychological effects of such torture.

Legislative History

    H.R. 4309 was introduced in the House by Mr. Smith of New 
Jersey and 15 cosponsors on July 22, 1998. The bill was 
referred to the Committee on International Relations, and in 
addition to the Committee on Commerce. Within the Committee on 
Commerce, the bill was referred to the Subcommittee on Health 
and Environment.
    The Committee on International Relations met to consider 
H.R. 4309 on August 6, 1998 and ordered the bill reported to 
the House, amended, by voice vote.
    On September 10, 1998, the Chairman of the Committee on 
Commerce sent a letter to the Chairman of the Committee on 
International Relations indicating that, based on an agreement 
reached between the two Committees, and in order to expedite 
consideration of this measure by the House, the Committee on 
Commerce would not seek an extension of its referral of H.R. 
4309, provided such action would not prejudice the Commerce 
Committee's future jurisdictional interests in the legislation, 
with the understanding that the International Relations 
Committee would make certain amendments to the measure when it 
was brought to the House floor.
    On September 10, 1998, the Chairman of the Committee on 
International Relations sent a letter to the Chairman of the 
Committee on Commerce confirming the agreement reached between 
the two Committees on H.R. 4309 and acknowledging the Commerce 
Committee's jurisdictional concerns and prerogatives with 
respect to this bill, and stating that a Manager's Amendment 
would be offered on the House floor to address the Commerce 
Committee's concerns.
    The Committee on International Relations reported H. R. 
4309 to the House on September 14, 1998 (H. Rpt. 105-709, Part 
I). On September 14, 1998, the referral of H.R. 4309 to the 
Committee on Commerce was extended for a period ending not 
later than September 14, 1998. Subsequently, on September 14, 
1998, the Committee on Commerce was discharged from further 
consideration of H.R. 4309.
    The House considered H.R. 4309 under Suspension of the 
Rules on September 14, 1998, and passed the bill, amended, by a 
voice vote.
    On September 15, 1998, H.R. 4309 was received in the 
Senate. On October 8, 1998, by unanimous consent, the Senate 
proceeded to the immediate consideration of H.R. 4309 and 
passed the bill, amended.
    H.R. 4309 was returned to the House on October 8, 1998. The 
House considered H.R. 4309 under Suspension of the Rules on 
October 10, 1998, and agreed to the Senate amendment to H.R. 
4309 by a voice vote, clearing the measure for the President.
    H.R. 4309 was presented to the President on October 20, 
1998. The President signed H.R. 4309 into law on October 30, 
1998 (Public Law 105-320).

       antimicrobial regulation technical corrections act of 1998

                     Public Law 105-324 (H.R. 4679)

    To amend the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act to 
clarify the circumstances in which a substance is considered to 
be a pesticide chemical for purposes of such Act, and for other 
purposes.

Summary

    When the Food Quality Protection Act of 1996 (FQPA) was 
enacted, regulatory authority over certain specialty chemicals 
called ``antimicrobials'' that are used in food contact 
applications was unintentionally transferred from the Food and 
Drug Administration (FDA) to the Environmental Protection 
Agency (EPA).
    H.R. 4679 restores the pre-FQPA-enactment regulatory 
authority of the FDA over antimicrobials to the agency. As 
such, it is strictly a technical corrections measure that does 
not represent a change in FQPA policy or a weakening of the 
environmental safeguards in FQPA. It does not remove any use of 
a substance from regulation as a pesticide under the Federal 
Insecticide, Fungicide and Rodenticide Act (FIFRA). These 
substances would continue to be subject to registration by EPA 
under FIFRA in addition to the traditional FDA review for food 
additives.

Legislative History

    H.R. 4679 was introduced in the House by Mr. Bliley on 
October 2, 1998. The bill was referred solely to the Committee 
on Commerce.
    The House considered H.R. 4679 under Suspension of the 
Rules on October 7, 1998, thereby discharging the Committee on 
Commerce from further consideration of H.R. 4679. The House 
passed H.R. 4679 by a voice vote.
    On October 8, 1998, H.R. 4679 was received in the Senate 
and read twice. On October 9, 1998, by unanimous consent, the 
Senate proceeded to the immediate consideration of H.R. 4679, 
and passed the bill, without amendment, clearing the measure 
for the President.
    H.R. 4679 was presented to the President on October 20, 
1998. The President signed H.R. 4679 into law on October 30, 
1998 (Public Law 105-324).

       women's health research and prevention amendments of 1998

                Public Law 105-340 (S. 1722, H.R. 4683)

    To amend the Public Health Service Act to revise and extend 
certain programs with respect to women's health research and 
prevention activities at the National Institutes of Health and 
the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Summary

    The purpose of Public Law 105-340 is to amend the Public 
Health Service (PHS) Act to revise and extend certain programs 
with respect to women's health research and prevention 
activities at the National Institutes of Health (NIH) and the 
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
    Title I of Public Law 105-340 deals with women's health 
research programs at NIH. It amends section 403A of the PHS Act 
to extend the research program on DES (diethylstilbestrol), a 
drug widely prescribed to American women from 1938 to 1971 
which has been shown to be harmful to pregnant women and their 
children. Title I also establishes a national program, through 
the Public Health Service agencies, for education of health 
professionals and the public with respect to DES.
    Title I amends section 409A(d) of the PHS Act to extend the 
research program on osteoporosis, Paget's disease, and related 
bone disorders at the National Institute for Arthritis and 
Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases; and amends section 
417B(b)(1) of the PHS Act to extend the research programs for 
basic and clinical research and education efforts with respect 
to cancer, breast cancer, and ovarian and related cancer.
    Title I adds a new Section 424A to the PHS Act to expand, 
intensify, and coordinate research and related activities with 
respect to heart attack, stroke, and other cardiovascular 
diseases in women at the National Heart, Lung, and Blood 
Institute.
    Title I also amends section 445H of the PHS Act to extend 
the research programs at the National Institute on Aging, 
including research into the aging processes of women, with 
particular emphasis given to the effects of menopause and the 
diagnosis, disorders, and complications related to aging and 
loss of ovarian hormones in women.
    Finally, Title I amends section 486(d) of the PHS to allow 
the Director of NIH to make appointments to the Advisory 
Committee on Research on Women's Health.
    Title II of Public Law 105-340 deals with women's health 
initiatives at CDC. It amends section 306(n) of the PHS Act to 
extend the authority for statistical and epidemiological 
activities conducted by the National Center for Health 
Statistics, the Federal government's principal health 
statistical agency.
    Title II amends section 399L of the PHS Act to extend the 
National Cancer Registries Program which provides for the 
development of a comprehensive national cancer database for 
analysis of the cancer burden in the United States on a State, 
regional and national population basis.
    Title II also amends section 1501 of the PHS Act to extend 
the National Breast and Cervical Cancer Early Detection Program 
which provides for regular screening for breast and cervical 
cancers to underserved women, prompt follow-up if necessary, 
and assurance that the tests are performed in accordance with 
current recommendations for quality assurance.
    Finally, Title II amends section 1706 of the PHS Act to 
extend authorizations for grants to academic health 
institutions to establish centers for research and 
demonstration of health promotion and disease prevention.

Legislative History

    S. 1722 was introduced in the Senate by Mr. Frist and 27 
cosponsors on March 6, 1998. The bill was referred to the 
Senate Committee on Labor and Human Resources.
    H.R. 4683, the House companion bill, was introduced by Mr. 
Bilirakis and 16 cosponsors on October 2, 1998. The bill was 
referred solely to the Committee on Commerce.
    On October 12, 1998, by unanimous consent, the Senate 
Committee on Labor and Human Resources was discharged from 
further consideration of S. 1722. By unanimous consent, the 
Senate, on October 12, 1998, proceeded to the immediate 
consideration of S. 1722, and passed the bill, amended. S. 1722 
was received in the House on October 13, 1998, and referred to 
the Committee on Commerce.
    The House considered S. 1722 under Suspension of the Rules 
on October 13, 1998, thereby discharging the Committee on 
Commerce from further consideration of S. 1722. The House 
passed S. 1722 by a roll call vote of 401 yeas to 1 nay, 
clearing the measure for the President.
    S. 1722 was presented to the President on October 22, 1998. 
The President signed S. 1722 into law on October 31, 1998 
(Public Law 105-340).

           controlled substances trafficking prohibition act

                     Public Law 105-357 (H.R. 3633)

    To amend the Controlled Substances Import and Export Act to 
place limitations on controlled substances brought into the 
United States.

Summary

    Public Law 105-357 amends the Controlled Substances Import 
and Export Act to prohibit U.S. residents from importing into 
the United States a non-schedule I controlled substance 
exceeding 50 dosage units if they: (1) enter the United States 
through an international land border; and (2) do not possess a 
valid prescription or documentation verifying such a 
prescription.
    In addition, H.R. 3633 declares that such Federal 
requirement does not limit any State from imposing additional 
requirements.

Legislative History

    H.R. 3633 was introduced in the House by Mr. Chabot and 
nine cosponsors on April 1, 1998. The bill was referred to the 
Committee on the Judiciary, and in addition to the Committee on 
Commerce. Within the Committee on Commerce, H.R. 3633 was 
referred to the Subcommittee on Health and Environment.
    The Committee on the Judiciary considered H.R. 3633 on May 
20, 1998, and ordered the bill reported to the House, without 
amendment, by a voice vote. The Committee on the Judiciary 
reported H.R. 3633 to the House on July 16, 1998 (H. Rpt. 105-
629, Part 1). On July 16, 1998, the referral of H.R. 3633 to 
the Committee on Commerce was extended for a period ending not 
later than July 16, 1998. Subsequently, on July 16, 1998, the 
Committee on Commerce was discharged from further consideration 
of H.R. 3633.
    The House considered H.R. 3633 under Suspension of the 
Rules on August 3, 1998, and passed the bill, amended, by a 
voice vote.
    On August 31, 1998, H.R. 3633 was received in the Senate 
and read twice. On October 20, 1998, by unanimous consent, the 
Senate proceeded to the immediate consideration of H.R. 3633 
and passed the bill, without amendment, clearing the measure 
for the President.
    H.R. 3633 was presented to the President on November 2, 
1998. The President signed H.R. 3633 into law on November 10, 
1998 (Public Law 105-357.)

              ricky ray hemophilia relief fund act of 1998

                     Public Law 105-369 (H.R. 1023)

    To provide for compassionate payments with regard to 
individuals with blood-clotting disorders, such as hemophilia, 
who contracted human immunodeficiency virus due to contaminated 
antihemophilic factor, and for other purposes.

Summary

    H.R. 1023 establishes within the Treasury the Ricky Ray 
Hemophilia Relief Fund, which shall then be terminated five 
years after enactment of this Act. The bill mandates a single 
payment of $100,000 from the fund to an individual who became 
infected with the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) if the 
individual had any blood-clotting disorder and was treated with 
blood-clotting agents between July 1, 1982, and December 31, 
1987, is the lawful current or former spouse of such an 
individual, or acquired the HIV infection from a parent who is 
such an individual. H.R. 1023 also states that such payments 
shall not be considered as income or resources in determining 
eligibility for, or the amount of, Supplemental Security Income 
(SSI) benefits.

Legislative History

    H.R. 1023 was introduced in the House by Mr. Goss and 152 
cosponsors on March 11, 1997. The bill was referred to the 
Committee on the Judiciary, and in addition to the Committee on 
Commerce and the Committee on Ways and Means. Within the 
Committee on Commerce, H.R. 1023 was referred to the 
Subcommittee on Health and Environment.
    The Committee on the Judiciary considered H.R. 1023 on 
October 29, 1997, and ordered the bill reported to the House, 
amended, by a voice vote. The Committee on the Judiciary 
reported H.R. 1023 to the House on March 25, 1998 (H. Rpt. 105-
465, Part 1). On March 25, 1998, the referral of H.R. 1023 to 
the Committee on Commerce and the Committee on Ways and Means 
was extended for a period ending not later than June 2, 1998.
    The Committee on Ways and Means met in open markup session 
to on April 22, 1998, to consider H.R. 1023 and ordered the 
bill reported to the House, amended, by a voice vote. The 
Committee on Ways and Means reported H.R. 1023 to the House on 
May 7, 1998 (H. Rpt. 105-465, Part 2).
    On May 12, 1998, the Chairman of the Committee on Commerce 
sent a letter to the Speaker indicating that, in order to 
expedite consideration, the Committee on Commerce would waive 
its right to mark up H.R. 1023 and agree to be discharged from 
further consideration, without prejudicing its future 
jurisdiction with respect to H.R. 1023. On May 13, 1998, 
pursuant to Clause 5 of Rule X, the Committee on Commerce was 
discharged from further consideration of H.R. 1023.
    The House considered H.R. 1023 under Suspension of the 
Rules on May 19, 1998, and passed the bill, amended, by a voice 
vote.
    On May 20, 1998, H.R. 1023 was received in the Senate, read 
twice, and referred to the Senate Committee on Labor and Human 
Resources. On June 16, 1998, H.R. 1023 was referred a second 
time to the Senate Committee on Labor and Human Resources.
    The Senate Committee on Labor and Human Resources met to 
consider H.R. 1023 on September 23, 1998, and ordered the bill 
reported to the Senate. The Senate Committee on Labor and Human 
Resources reported H.R. 1023 to the Senate on October 7, 1998 
(No Written Report).
    On October 21, 1998, by unanimous consent, the Senate 
proceeded to the immediate consideration of H.R. 1023, and 
passed the bill, without amendment, clearing the measure for 
the President.
    H.R. 1023 was presented to the President on November 2, 
1998. The President signed H.R. 1023 into law on November 12, 
1998 (Public Law 105-369).

         health professions education partnerships act of 1998

                      Public Law 105-392 (S. 1754)

    To amend the Public Health Service Act to consolidate and 
reauthorize health professions and minority and disadvantaged 
health professions and disadvantaged health education programs, 
and for other purposes.

Summary

    The Health Professions Education Partnerships Act of 1998 
reauthorizes and consolidates 44 different Federal health 
professions training programs currently authorized under Title 
VII and Title VIII of the Public Health Service Act. These 44 
programs are consolidated into 7 general and flexible 
categories of authorities which are designed to train health 
practitioners most inclined to enter practice in rural and 
other medically underserved areas. The seven general 
authorities provide support for: (1) the training of 
underrepresented minority and disadvantaged health professions 
students; (2) the training of primary care and dental 
providers; (3) the establishment and operation of 
interdisciplinary, community-based training activities; (4) 
health professions work force information and analysis; (5) 
public health workforce development; (6) nursing education; and 
(7) student financial assistance.

Legislative History

    S. 1754 was introduced in the Senate by Mr. Frist and five 
cosponsors on March 12, 1998. The bill was referred to the 
Senate Committee on Labor and Human Resources.
    The Senate Committee on Labor and Human Resources met to 
consider S. 1754, on April 1, 1998, and ordered the bill 
reported to the Senate, amended. The Senate Committee on Labor 
and Human Resources reported S. 1754 to the Senate on June 23, 
1998 (S. Rpt. 105-220).
    On July 31, 1998, by unanimous consent, the Senate 
proceeded to the immediate consideration of S. 1754, and passed 
the bill.
    On August 3, 1998, S. 1754 was received in the House and 
held at the desk. On October 13, 1998, the House considered S. 
1754 under Suspension of the Rules, and passed the bill, 
amended, by a roll call vote of 303 yeas to 102 nays. On 
October 14, 1998, S. 1754 was returned to the Senate.
    On October 14, 1998, by unanimous consent, the Senate 
agreed to the House amendment to S. 1754, clearing the measure 
for the President.
    S. 1754 was presented to the President on November 2, 1998. 
The President signed S. 1754 into law on November 13, 1998 
(Public Law 105-392).

   declaring roanoke, virginia, as the official site of the national 
              emergency medical services memorial service

                           (H. Con. Res. 171)

    Declaring the city of Roanoke, Virginia, to be the official 
site of the National Emergency Medical Services Memorial 
Service.

Summary

    H. Con. Res. 171 declares the city of Roanoke, Virginia, to 
be the official site of the National Emergency Medical Services 
Memorial Service, which will honor emergency medical services 
personnel who have died in the line of duty. The concurrent 
resolution also provides that nothing in this resolution shall 
be construed to place the National Emergency Medical Services 
Memorial Service under Federal authority or to require any 
expenditure of Federal funds.

Legislative History

    H. Con. Res. 171 was introduced in the House by 
Representatives Goodlatte and Goode on October 21, 1997. The 
bill was referred solely to the Committee on Commerce.
    On May 12, 1998, the Subcommittee on Health and Environment 
met in open markup session to consider H. Con. Res. 171, and 
approved the bill for Full Committee consideration, without 
amendment, by a voice vote.
    The Full Committee met in open markup session on May 14, 
1998, to consider H. Con. Res. 171, and ordered the bill 
reported to the House, without amendment, by a voice vote, a 
quorum being present. The Committee on Commerce reported H. 
Con. Res. 171 to the House on May 18, 1998 (H. Rpt. 105-539).
    The House considered H. Con. Res. 171 under Suspension of 
the Rules on May 19, 1998, and passed the bill, amended, by a 
voice vote.
    On May 20, 1998, H. Con. Res. 171 was received in the 
Senate. On May 21, 1998, by unanimous consent, the Senate 
proceeded to the immediate consideration of H. Con. Res. 171 
and agreed to the resolution.

sense of the house with respect to winning the war on drugs to protect 
                              our children

                             (H. Res. 423)

    Expressing the sense of the House with respect to winning 
the war on drugs to protect our children.

Summary

    H. Res. 423 is a resolution expressing the sense of the 
House of Representatives with respect to winning the war on 
drugs. The resolution expresses the commitment of the House to 
create a drug-free America, and urges Members of the House to 
work to energize children, parents, teachers, and law 
enforcement personnel to commit to protect children from the 
dangers of drugs. Further, the resolution declares that the 
U.S. will focus on deterring the demand of illegal drugs, 
stopping the supply of drugs into the country, and increasing 
personal accountability.

Legislative History

    H. Res. 423 was introduced in the House by Mr. Hastert and 
46 cosponsors on May 7, 1998. The resolution was referred 
solely to the Committee on Commerce.
    On May 11, 1998, the Chairman of the Committee on Commerce 
sent a letter to the Speaker indicating that, in order to 
expedite consideration, the Committee would waive its right to 
mark up H. Res. 423, provided that such action does not 
prejudice the Committee's jurisdictional prerogatives with 
respect to this legislation.
    The House considered H. Res. 423 under Suspension of the 
Rules on May 12, 1998, and passed the resolution by a roll call 
vote of 412 yeas to 2 nays.

          sense of the house of representatives regarding the

           importance of mammograms and biopsies in the fight

                         against breast cancer

                             (H. Res. 565)

    Expressing the sense of the House of Representatives 
regarding the importance of mammograms and biopsies in the 
fight against breast cancer.

Summary

    H. Res. 565 expresses the sense of the House of 
Representatives regarding the importance of mammograms and 
biopsies in the fight against breast cancer. According to the 
General Accounting Office, breast cancer is the most commonly 
diagnosed nonskin cancer and the second leading cause of cancer 
deaths among American women. Experts estimate that during the 
1990s as many as 1.8 million women will be diagnosed with 
breast cancer, and 500,000 will die from it. Mammograms and 
biopsies are the chief method of identifying breast cancer in 
its early stages.
    H. Res. 565 expresses the importance of American women, 
community organizations, health care providers, and the Federal 
government taking an active role in the fight against breast 
cancer.

Legislative History

    H. Res. 565 was introduced in the House by Mr. Bass and 135 
cosponsors on October 1, 1998. The resolution was referred 
solely to the Committee on Commerce.
    The House considered H. Res. 565 under Suspension of the 
Rules on October 8 and October 9, 1998, thereby discharging the 
Committee on Commerce from further consideration of H. Res. 
565. On October 9, 1998, the House passed H. Res. 565 by a roll 
call vote of 424 yeas to 0 nays.

          resolution recognizing suicide as a national problem

                             (H. Res. 212)

    Recognizing suicide as a national problem, and for other 
purposes.

Summary

    H. Res. 212 declares that the House of Representatives 
recognizes suicide as a national problem and declares suicide 
prevention to be a national priority. The resolution 
acknowledges that no single prevention program will be 
appropriate for all populations or communities. In addition, H. 
Res. 212 encourages certain initiatives, including the 
development and the promotion of accessibility and 
affordability of mental health services, to enable all persons 
at risk for suicide to obtain the services, without fear of 
stigma.

Legislative History

    H. Res. 212 was introduced in the House by Mr. Lewis of 
Georgia and 22 cosponsors on July 31, 1997. The resolution was 
referred solely to the Committee on Commerce.
    On October 9, 1998, the House considered H. Res. 212 under 
Suspension of the Rules, thereby discharging the Committee on 
Commerce from further consideration of H. Res. 212. On October 
9, 1998, the House passed H. Res. 212 by a voice vote.

prohibition on the expenditure of federal funds for the needle exchange 
                                program

                              (H.R. 3717)

    To prohibit the expenditure of Federal funds for the 
distribution of needles or syringes for the hypodermic 
injection of illegal drugs.

Summary

    H.R. 3717 amends Part B of Title II of the Public Health 
Service Act by adding a new section 247. New section 247 
prohibits the use of Federal funds to carry out any program of 
distributing sterile needles or syringes for the hypodermic 
injection of any illegal drug.
    H.R. 3717 also repeals section 506 of Public Law 105-78, 
Departments of Labor, Health and Human Services, and Education, 
and Related Agencies Appropriations Act, 1998, relating to 
needle exchange programs.

Legislative History

    H.R. 3717 was introduced in the House by Mr. Solomon and 
four cosponsors on April 23, 1998. The bill was referred solely 
to the Committee on Commerce.
    On April 27, 1998, the Chairman of the Committee on 
Commerce sent a letter to the Speaker indicating that, in order 
to expedite consideration, the Committee would waive its right 
to mark up H.R. 3717, provided that such action would not 
prejudice the Committee's jurisdictional prerogatives with 
respect to the legislation.
    On April 28, 1998, the Committee on Rules met and granted a 
rule providing for the consideration of H.R. 3717. The rule was 
filed in the House as H. Res. 409. The House passed H. Res. 409 
on April 29, 1998, by a voice vote. The House considered H.R. 
3717 on April 29, 1998, and passed the bill, without amendment, 
by a roll call vote of 287 yeas to 140 nays.
    On April 30, 1998, H.R. 3717 was received in the Senate. On 
May 7, 1998, H.R. 3717 was read for the first time. On May 8, 
1998, the bill was read for a second time and placed on the 
Senate Calendar. No further action on H.R. 3717 occurred in the 
105th Congress.

                     patient protection act of 1998

                              (H.R. 4250)

    To provide new patient protections under group health 
plans.

Summary

    H.R. 4250, the Patient Protection Act of 1998, amends the 
Public Health Service Act, the Employee Retirement Income 
Security Act (ERISA), and the Internal Revenue Code to define 
standards and health benefit plans. First, the legislation 
lifts ``gag rules'' placed on medical providers to allow for 
open communications between patients and physicians in order to 
allow the patient to make fully-informed decisions concerning 
the patient's medical condition and optimal course of 
treatment. The legislation prohibits health plans from 
restricting physicians from giving advice to a patient about 
health status or medical treatments regardless of whether the 
health plan covers the treatment.
    The legislation requires group health plans and health 
insurers to cover emergency medical screening examinations 
without prior preauthorization if a ``prudent layperson'' with 
average knowledge would consider the situation an emergency. 
This provision does not prohibit group health plans or 
insurance insurers from imposing any form of cost-sharing for 
emergency services if the cost-sharing is uniformly applied.
    The legislation requires group health plans and insurers 
that cover routine gynecological or obstetric care by a 
participating specialist to allow female enrollees to receive 
Ob/Gyn treatment without referral by the primary care provider. 
The legislation also requires health plans and insurers that 
cover routine pediatric care to allow the parent to designate a 
participating pediatric specialist as the primary care 
provider.
    H.R. 4250 requires the administrators of group health plans 
to ensure that the summary plan descriptions available to 
participants describe: (1) covered health benefits; (2) plan 
coverage for emergency medical care; (3) plan benefits for 
preventive services; (4) coverage of prescription drugs; and 
(5) available COBRA benefits. In addition, the bill requires 
summary plan descriptions to explain the financial 
responsibility of participants.
    The legislation requires group plans to provide written 
notice to a participant of any negative coverage decision on 
requested benefits under the plan within 30 days of the 
request. If the request is for urgent medical care, the plan 
must provide the notice within ten days; for emergencies, the 
requirement is 72 hours. If an internal appeal results in 
another coverage denial, the participant may make a request 
within 30 days for an external review, which must be conducted 
by one or more independent medical experts selected under the 
plan. If the final decision under the plan is an adverse 
coverage decision, then the participant has recourse to the 
courts. This legislation establishes civil penalties for group 
health plans that do not provide benefits in accordance with 
the plan's final decision. In cases in which a physician 
certifies to a court that the time needed to carry out 
administrative remedies and procedures for review of coverage 
denials would run the risk of causing irreparable harm to the 
health of the participant, the bill permits such participants 
to take civil action to expedite review.
    H.R. 4250 requires all health maintenance organizations 
(HMOs) to offer a point-of-service (POS) option to all 
participants. A POS option allows participants to go outside 
the plan's networks of providers if they agree to a higher 
premium or copayment requirement. If a plan declines to provide 
this option, the legislation requires the issuer to provide 
supplemental coverage outside the network. The bill provides 
exceptions to the POS requirement if the plan: (1) already 
covers services that are not provided in the closed network; 
(2) offers coverage through a HealthMart; or (3) is located in 
a State that requires the organization to have a separate 
license in order to offer such an option. If a State determines 
that a group health plan has made a ``good faith'' effort to 
obtain coverage, the POS requirement will not apply.
    The bill creates ``HealthMarts'', private, non-profit 
organizations that offer health benefit coverage within a 
defined geographic area, provide administrative services to 
purchasers, and disseminate information. HealthMarts will 
generally be constituted by small businesses and their 
employees, health care providers, and entities that underwrite 
or administer the coverage of health care benefits. The bill 
stipulates that these underwriters must be licensed or 
regulated under State law and must meet State standards of 
consumer protection. Policies offered in a HealthMart may waive 
most State mandated benefits.
    In addition, the legislation requires HealthMarts to: (1) 
make available health benefits at rates that are established by 
the health insurance issuer; (2) offer the same benefits to all 
eligible employees in a geographic area; (3) maintain at least 
10 purchasers and 100 members by the end of the first year; (4) 
specify the geographic areas which must encompass at least one 
county or equivalent area; (5) collect and disseminate 
consumer-oriented information; and (6) file information with 
the applicable Federal authority that demonstrates compliance 
with the bill's requirements.
    Finally, H.R. 4250 permits a Community Health Organization 
(CHO) to offer health insurance coverage in a State in which it 
is not licensed if the CHO applies for a waiver of the State 
licensure requirement with the Secretary of Health and Human 
Services (the Secretary) by November 1, 2003, and the Secretary 
determines that grounds for a waiver have been met. The 
application may be waived if: (1) the State failed to complete 
action on a licensing application within 90 days; (2) the 
waiver application was denied to the CHO, but was approved for 
a similar entity; and (3) the State denied the waiver on the 
basis of solvency requirements different from those of the 
Secretary. In order to qualify for a waiver, the CHO must 
assume full financial risk of covering health services. The 
legislation directs the Secretary to establish a certification 
process for CHOs to meet the solvency standards.

Legislative History

    H.R. 4250 was introduced in the House by Mr. Gingrich and 
57 cosponsors on July 16, 1998. The bill was referred to the 
Committee on Commerce, and in addition to the Committee on 
Education and the Workforce, the Committee on Ways and Means, 
the Committee on the Judiciary, and the Committee on Government 
Reform and Oversight.
    On July 21, 1998, the Chairman of the Committee on Commerce 
sent a letter to the Speaker indicating that, in order to 
expedite consideration, the Committee would waive its right to 
mark up H.R. 4250, provided that such action would not 
prejudice the Commerce Committee's jurisdictional prerogatives 
with respect to the legislation.
    On July 24, 1998 (legislative day of July 23, 1998), the 
Committee on Rules met and granted a rule providing for the 
consideration of H.R. 4250. The rule was filed in the House as 
H. Res. 509. The House passed H. Res. 509 on July 24, 1998, by 
a roll call vote of 279 yeas to 143 nays. The House considered 
H.R. 4250 on July 24, 1998, and passed the bill, amended, by a 
roll call vote of 216 yeas to 210 nays.
    On July 28, 1998, H.R. 4250 was received in the Senate and 
read the first time. On July 29, 1998, H.R. 4250 was read a 
second time and placed on the Senate Calendar.
    On October 9, 1998, a motion to proceed to the 
consideration of H.R. 4250 was made in the Senate. The motion 
to proceed to the consideration of H.R. 4250 was tabled by a 
roll call vote of 50 yeas to 47 nays.
    No further action was taken by the Senate on H.R. 4250 in 
the 105th Congress.

                       drug demand reduction act

                              (H.R. 4550)

    To provide for programs to facilitate a significant 
reduction in the incidence and prevalence of substance abuse 
thorough reducing the demand for illegal drugs and the 
inappropriate use of legal drugs.

Summary

    H.R. 4550 establishes programs to significantly reduce the 
incidence of substance abuse through restricting the demand for 
illegal drugs and the improper use of legal drugs. The bill 
also provides grants to support the efforts of parent 
organizations to develop and promote efforts to reduce illegal 
drug use among children in their communities, incentives for 
the approval of anti-addiction drugs, and medical education 
through health professionals to prevent, diagnose, and treat 
substance abuse cases.

Legislative History

    H.R. 4550 was introduced by Mr. Portman and eleven 
cosponsors on September 11, 1998. The bill was referred to the 
Committee on Commerce, and in addition to the Committee on 
Government Reform and Oversight, the Committee on Small 
Business, the Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure, 
the Committee on the Judiciary, and the Committee on Education 
and the Workforce.
    On September 14, 1998, the Chairman of the Committee on 
Commerce sent a letter to the Speaker indicating that, in order 
to expedite consideration, the Committee would waive its right 
to mark up H.R. 4550, provided that such action would not 
prejudice the Committee's jurisdictional prerogatives with 
respect to the legislation.
    The Committee on Rules met on September 15, 1998, and 
granted a rule providing for the consideration of H.R. 4550. 
The rule was filed in the House as H. Res. 538. The House 
passed H. Res. 538 on September 16, 1998 by a voice vote. The 
House considered H.R. 4550 on September 16, 1998 and passed the 
bill, amended, by a roll call vote of 396 yeas to 9 nays.
    On September 17, 1998, H.R. 4550 was received in the 
Senate, read twice, and referred to the Senate Committee on the 
Judiciary. No further action was taken by the Senate on H.R. 
4550 in the 105th Congress.

 environmental research, development, and demonstration authorization 
                              act of 1997

                              (H.R. 1276)

    To authorize appropriations for fiscal years 1998 and 1999 
for the research, development, and demonstration activities of 
the Environmental Protection Agency, and for other purposes.

Summary

    H.R. 1276, the Environmental Research, Development, and 
Demonstration Authorization Act of 1997, was referred to the 
Committee on Science and the Committee on Commerce.
    H.R. 1276, as reported to the House by the Committee on 
Science, authorized appropriations for Fiscal Year 1998 and 
1999 for research, development, and demonstration programs of 
the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) within the Office of 
Research and Development. The bill provided $639,580,500 for 
Fiscal Year 1998 and $658,077,600 for Fiscal Year 1999. In 
addition, H.R. 1276 provided authorizations for pesticide 
registration and reregistration activities, placed limitations 
on certain environmental research and development projects, 
authorized funds for transboundary pollution research, required 
a strategic plan for environmental research activities, and 
contained provisions respecting graduate student fellowships, 
provided reporting requirements for the Science Advisory Board, 
placed limitations on lobbying activities, provided for notice 
of reprogramming and restructuring activities by EPA, contained 
a Sense of Congress resolution on the year 2000 problem and 
contained a Sense of Congress resolution on certain ``Buy 
American'' provisions.
    H.R. 1276, as reported to the House by the Committee on 
Commerce, deletes the provisions of H.R. 1276, as reported by 
the Committee on Science, for which there were existing 
authorizations within the sole jurisdiction of the Commerce 
Committee. In addition, H.R. 1276, as reported by the Committee 
on Commerce, limits other authorizations contained in H.R. 1276 
to ``environmental research and development activities not 
authorized under other authority of law'' and confines the 
duties of the Assistant Administrator for Research and 
Development, contained in section 4 of H.R. 1276, to ``research 
and development'' planning activities.

Legislative History

    H.R. 1276 was introduced by Mr. Calvert on April 10, 1997. 
The bill was referred solely to the Committee on Science.
    The Committee on Science considered H.R. 1276 on April 16, 
1997, and ordered the bill reported to the House, amended, by a 
voice vote. The Committee on Science reported H.R. 1276 to the 
House on May 16, 1997 (H. Rpt. 105-99, Part 1). On May 16, 
1997, H.R. 1276 was referred, sequentially, to the Committee on 
Commerce, for a period ending not later than June 20, 1997. On 
June 20, 1997, the referral of H.R. 1276 to the Committee on 
Commerce was extended for a period ending not later than June 
26, 1997.
    The Full Committee met in open markup session on June 25, 
1997, and by unanimous consent, proceeded to the immediate 
consideration of H.R. 1276. The Full Committee ordered H.R. 
1276 reported to the House, amended, by a voice vote, a quorum 
being present. The Committee on Commerce reported H.R. 1276 to 
the House on June 26, 1997 (H. Rpt. 105-99, Part 2).
    No further action was taken on H.R. 1276 in the 105th 
Congress.

          medical device regulatory modernization act of 1997

                              (H.R. 1710)

    To amend the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act to 
facilitate the development, clearance, and use of devices to 
maintain and improve the public health and quality of life of 
the citizens of the United States.

Summary

    H.R. 1710 amends the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act 
to improve the Food and Drug Administration's (FDA's) 
regulation of medical devices in order to keep pace with 
medical innovation and enhance patient access. H.R. 1710 
establishes procedures for the expedited review of breakthrough 
devices, and expanding the humanitarian use of devices by 
creating specific exemptions and allowances in emergency 
situations. Also, in order to assist FDA in meeting time lines 
for product application reviews, H.R. 1710 establishes 
procedures for the accreditation of third-party reviewers to 
review certain 510(k) premarket notification submissions and to 
make recommendations regarding the initial classification of 
devices. This will allow FDA to redirect its resources to 
priority, high-risk devices, while maintaining the critical 
review of products before they enter the marketplace.

Legislative History

    On April 30, 1997, the Subcommittee on Health and 
Environment held an oversight hearing on Medical Devices: 
Technological Innovation and Patient/Provider Perspectives. The 
Subcommittee received testimony from representatives of the 
Food and Drug Administration and State and university 
hospitals.
    On May 22, 1997, H.R. 1710, the Medical Device Regulatory 
Modernization Act of 1997, was introduced in the House by Mr. 
Barton and 39 cosponsors. The bill was referred solely to the 
Committee on Commerce.
    On September 17, 1997, the Subcommittee on Health and 
Environment met in open markup session and approved H.R. 1710 
for Full Committee consideration, amended, by a voice vote.
    On September 26, 1997, the Full Committee met in open 
markup session and ordered H.R. 1710 reported to the House, 
amended, by a voice vote, a quorum being present. On October 6, 
1997, the Committee on Commerce reported H.R. 1710 to the House 
(H. Rpt. 105-307).
    On October 7, 1997, the House considered H.R. 1411 under 
Suspension of the Rules and passed the bill, amended, by a 
voice vote. As passed by the House, H.R. 1411 included the 
provisions of three separate bills reported by the Committee on 
Commerce: (1) H.R. 1411, the Prescription Drug User Fee 
Reauthorization and Drug Regulatory Modernization Act of 1997; 
(2) H.R. 2469, the Food and Nutrition Information Reform Act of 
1997; and (3) H.R. 1710, the Medical Device Regulatory 
Modernization Act of 1997.
    On October 7, 1997, the House, by unanimous consent, took 
S. 830 from the desk and passed the bill after striking all 
after the enacting clause and inserting in lieu thereof the 
text of H.R. 1411, as passed by the House. Subsequently, on 
October 7, 1997, H.R. 1411 was laid on the table.
    No further action was taken on H.R. 1710 in the 105th 
Congress. However, provisions of H.R. 1710 were enacted into 
law in Title II of Public Law 105-115. For the legislative 
history of that law, see the discussion of the Food and Drug 
Administration Modernization Act of 1997 in this section.

           food and nutrition information reform act of 1997

                              (H.R. 2469)

    To amend the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act and other 
statutes to provide for improvements in the regulation of food 
ingredients, nutrient content claims, and health claims, and 
for other purposes.

Summary

    The purpose of H.R. 2469, the Food and Nutrition 
Information Reform Act of 1997, is to enhance consumer 
knowledge of the health benefits of foods and food treatments, 
to reduce decision making times, and to improve the processes 
by which information can be communicated to consumers that will 
enable them to adopt more healthful diets.
    H.R. 2469 amends the existing statutory and regulatory 
requirements on the labeling of food products to expand 
consumer access to important dietary information. The bill also 
streamlines the procedures available for the Secretary of 
Health and Human services (the Secretary) to permit more 
scientifically sound nutrition information to be provided to 
consumers through health and nutrient content claims. This 
process is triggered by authoritative statements of entities 
such as the National Institutes of Health, the Centers for 
Disease Control and Prevention, and the National Academy of 
Sciences.
    H.R. 2469 also establishes a notification process for the 
regulation of components of food packaging, known as food 
contact substances, which is intended to expedite authorization 
of the marketing of a food contact substance except where the 
Secretary determines that submission and review of a food 
additive petition is necessary to provide adequate 
determination of safety, and authorizes appropriations to 
finance the costs of the new notification process.

Legislative History

    On September 11, 1997, H.R. 2469, the Food and Nutrition 
Information Reform Act, was introduced in the House by Mr. 
Whitfield and 14 cosponsors. The bill was referred solely to 
the Committee on Commerce.
    On September 17, 1997, the Subcommittee on Health and 
Environment met in open markup session and approved H.R. 2469 
for Full Committee consideration, amended, by a voice vote.
    On September 25, 1997, the Full Committee met in open 
markup session and ordered H.R. 2469 reported to the House, 
amended, by a roll call vote of 43 yeas to 0 nays. On October 
6, 1997, the Committee on Commerce reported H.R. 2469 to the 
House (H. Rpt. 105-306).
    On October 7, 1997, the House considered H.R. 1411 under 
Suspension of the Rules and passed the bill, amended, by a 
voice vote. As passed by the House, H.R. 1411 included the 
provisions of three separate bills reported by the Committee on 
Commerce: (1) H.R. 1411, the Prescription Drug User Fee 
Reauthorization and Drug Regulatory Modernization Act of 1997; 
(2) H.R. 2469, the Food and Nutrition Information Reform Act of 
1997; and (3) H.R. 1710, the Medical Device Regulatory 
Modernization Act of 1997.
    On October 7, 1997, the House, by unanimous consent, took 
S. 830 from the desk and passed the bill after striking all 
after the enacting clause and inserting in lieu thereof the 
text of H.R. 1411, as passed by the House. Subsequently, on 
October 7, 1997, H.R. 1411 was laid on the table.
    No further action was taken on H.R. 2469 in the 105th 
Congress. However, provisions of H.R. 2469 were enacted into 
law in Title III of Public Law 105-115. For the legislative 
history of that law, see the discussion of the Food and Drug 
Administration Modernization Act of 1997 in this section.

             patient access to responsible care act of 1997

                              (H.R. 1415)

    To amend the Public Health Service Act and the Employee 
Retirement Income Security Act of 1974 to establish standards 
for relationships between group health plans and health 
insurance issuers with enrollees, health professionals, and 
providers.

Summary

    H.R. 1415 amends the Public Health Service Act and the 
Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974 to establish 
standards for group health plans and health insurance issuers 
in dealing with enrollees, health professionals, and providers. 
The bill requires health insurance carriers to ensure that (1) 
covered items are available and accessible to each enrollee; 
and (2) emergency services are available and covered under 
health plans.
    The bill also requires insurers to permit enrollees the 
option to select a health professional, to cover 
nonparticipating health care providers, avoid enrollee burden 
from cost control measures, ensure access to specialists, and 
provide for continuity and continuation of care. H.R. 1415 
prohibits issuers from discriminating against enrollees on the 
basis of certain, specified factors.
    H.R. 1415 requires insurers to disclose certain information 
to enrollees and potential enrollees, comply with Federal and 
State confidentiality laws, meet State solvency laws and 
regulations, and establish quality enhancement measures.

Legislative History

    H.R. 1415 was introduced in the House by Mr. Norwood and 63 
cosponsors on April 23, 1997. The bill was referred to the 
Committee on Commerce, and in addition to the Committee on 
Education and the Workforce. Within the Committee on Commerce, 
the bill was referred to the Subcommittee on Health and 
Environment.
    The Subcommittee on Health and Environment held a hearing 
on managed care quality on October 28, 1997, which focused on 
H.R. 1415, the Patient Access to Responsible Care Act of 1997. 
Witnesses included the Director of the Agency for Health Care 
Policy Research and representatives of managed care plans and 
patient advocates.
    No further action was taken on H.R. 1415 in the 105th 
Congress.

              health insurance bill of rights act of 1997

                               (H.R. 820)

    To amend title XXVII of the Public Health Service Act to 
establish standards for the protection of consumers in managed 
care plans and other health insurance coverage.

Summary

    H.R. 820 amends the Public Health Service Act and the 
Employee Retirement Income Security Act to establish consumer 
protection standards for group health plans and health 
insurance issuers.
    Specifically this legislation requires the following: (1) 
emergency services (if covered) must be provided without prior-
authorization restrictions according to the prudent layperson 
standard; (2) a female enrollee may designate an obstetrician 
or gynecologist as her primary care provider and may receive 
routine care from this provider without prior-authorization or 
referral; (3) enrollees undergoing a course of treatment from a 
provider must be allowed to continue that course of treatment 
for a limited time if the provider is discharged (for other 
than quality reasons) from the network; (4) plans that use a 
restrictive drug formulary must have a process for providing 
exceptions from the formulary when medically indicated; (5) 
insurers must maintain a quality assurance and improvement 
program; (6) plans must collect and report to beneficiaries 
uniform, standardized quality data; (7) plans must maintain a 
written process for selecting and credentialing participating 
providers; (8) plans must maintain a drug utilization review 
program that monitors drug use and incidence of adverse 
reactions; (9) plans that conduct utilization review must do so 
in accordance with reasonable standards; (10) plans must 
maintain a grievance and appeals system; (11) plans may not 
arbitrarily interfere with or alter the decision of the 
treating physician regarding the manner or setting in which 
care is provided.
    H.R. 820 also prohibits agreements between insurers and 
providers from: (1) restricting the provider from engaging in 
medical communications with a patient; or (2) transferring to 
the provider any liability relating to actions or omissions of 
the issuer or agent, imposing strict requirements on physician 
incentive plans.

Legislative History

    H.R. 820 was introduced in the House by Mr. Dingell on 
February 25, 1997. The bill was referred solely to the 
Committee on Commerce.
    The Subcommittee on Health and Environment held a hearing 
on managed care quality on October 28, 1997, which focused on 
H.R. 820, the Health Insurance Bill of Rights Act of 1997. 
Witnesses included the Director of the Agency for Health Care 
Policy Research and representatives of managed care plans and 
patient advocates.
    No further action was taken on H.R. 820 in the 105th 
Congress.

                 reformulated gas program in california

                               (H.R. 630)

    To amend the Clean Air Act to permit the exclusive 
application of California State regulations regarding 
reformulated gas in certain areas within the State.

Summary

    H.R. 630 amends section 211 of the Clean Air Act to provide 
that California reformulated gasoline rules would apply in 
areas of California which are now considered ``covered'' areas 
under the Federal reformulated gasoline (RFG) program. These 
areas are San Diego, Los Angeles, and Sacramento. Under H.R. 
630, California reformulated gasoline rules would apply ``in 
lieu'' of Federal reformulated gasoline rules if certain 
conditions are met. These conditions are that the California 
rules achieve equivalent or greater emission reductions than 
the requirements of section 211(k) of the Clean Air Act (e.g., 
the formula and performance standards regarding Federal RFG 
composition) with respect to the aggregate mass of emissions of 
toxic air pollutants and in the case of the aggregate mass of 
emissions of ozone-forming compounds.

Legislative History

    H.R. 630 was introduced in the House by Mr. Bilbray and 
eleven cosponsors on February 6, 1997. The bill was referred 
solely to the Committee on Commerce.
    On April 22, 1998, the Subcommittee on Health and 
Environment held a hearing on H.R. 630. The Subcommittee 
received testimony from a Member of Congress and 
representatives of the Environmental Protection Agency, the 
Department of Energy, the California Air Resources Board, oil 
refiners, petroleum marketers, boat manufacturers, and 
organizations representing producers of methyl tertiary butyl 
ether-based and ethanol-based oxygenated fuels.
    No further action was taken on H.R. 630 in the 105th 
Congress.

                       hiv partner protection act

                              (H.R. 4431)

    To amend title XXVI of the Public Health Service Act to 
provide for State programs of partner notification with respect 
to individuals with HIV disease.

Summary

    Under current law, in order to be eligible for Ryan White 
funding, States are required to have an HIV spousal 
notification program that would include all present and past 
spouses. Essentially, H.R. 4431 expands that requirement to 
include all past and present partners who may have been exposed 
to the deadly virus.
    H.R. 4431 requires a physician to confidentially report 
positive test results to the State public health officer and 
any other information necessary for carrying out a system of 
partner notification, as is presently done for diseases such as 
syphilis. The State then advises the partner who may have been 
infected to seek testing, counseling, and possible treatment. 
At no time, however, does the State reveal the identity of the 
original person who may have exposed others to the disease.
    When notifying a partner who may have been infected, the 
State health officer must also offer referrals for testing and 
counseling. The counseling must include information on the 
modes of transmission of HIV, information on the prevention of 
prenatal and perinatal transmission of the disease, and 
information about therapeutic measures which prevent the 
deterioration of the immune system. Notifications should be 
done in person unless doing so is an unreasonable burden on the 
State.
    H.R. 4431 provides no criminal or civil penalty if the 
person who originally tested positive refuses to identify his 
or her partners, and also provides that there would be no 
criminal or civil penalty against a person who in good faith 
makes errors in submitting reports or making disclosures. 
Finally, if a State fails to notify a person who may have been 
infected, the physician could not be held liable.
    Lastly, the bill authorizes $10 million in order to assist 
States and local health departments carry out the provisions of 
this legislation. It also prevents insurance companies from 
discriminating against anyone who may have been tested for HIV 
under this program.

Legislative History

    H.R. 4431 was introduced in the House by Representatives 
Ackerman and Coburn on August 6, 1998. The bill was referred 
solely to the Committee on Commerce.
    On September 29, 1998, the Subcommittee on Health and 
Environment held a hearing on H.R. 4431. Witnesses included 
Members of Congress, the Director of the Centers for Disease 
Control and Prevention, State and local health officials, and 
private citizens.
    No further action was taken on H.R. 4431 in the 105th 
Congress.

                 Oversight or Investigative Activities

the department of health and human services' proposed budget for fiscal 
                               year 1998

    On February 12, 1997, the Subcommittee on Health and 
Environment held an oversight hearing on the Department of 
Health and Human Services' Proposed Budget for Fiscal Year 
1998. The hearing focused on funding priorities within the 
Department of Health and Human Services and the 
Administration's proposals for reforming the Medicare and 
Medicaid Programs. Witnesses included representatives of the 
Health Care Financing Administration and the Congressional 
Budget Office.

         medicare and managed care: payment and related issues

    On February 27, 1997, the Subcommittee on Health and 
Environment held an oversight hearing on the Medicare and 
Managed Care. The hearing focused on Medicare's rate setting 
policies for health maintenance organizations and the 
Administrations proposals to modify those policies. Witnesses 
included representatives of the Health Care Financing 
Administration, the General Accounting Office, the Prospective 
Payment Assessment Commission, and the Physician Payment Review 
Commission.

                       medicare home health care

    The Subcommittee on Health and Environment held an 
oversight hearing on March 5, 1997, on the Medicare Home Health 
Program. The purpose of this hearing was to receive testimony 
on problems in the Medicare Home Health Program, including 
fraud and abuse, as well as to discuss ways in which the 
Federal government is trying to curb these excesses. Witnesses 
included representatives from the Department of Health and 
Human Services, the General Accounting Office, the Health Care 
Financing Administration, the Prospective Payment Assessment 
Commission, and the Medicare Home Health industry.

      assisted suicide: legal, medical, ethical, and social issues

    On March 6, 1997, the Subcommittee on Health and 
Environment held an oversight hearing on Assisted Suicide: 
Legal, Medical, Ethical, and Social Issues. The hearing 
examined a wide range of arguments regarding assisted suicide. 
Testimony was received from religious leaders, medical 
practitioners, medical ethicists, and representatives of the 
community of individuals with disabilities.

                  medicaid reform: the governors' view

    On March 11, 1997, the Subcommittee on Health and 
Environment held an oversight hearing on Medicaid Reform: The 
Governors' View. The hearing examined The Governors' Agenda for 
the 105th Congress, which was unanimously adopted by the 
National Governors' Association (NGA). Among other provisions, 
the Agenda expressed the NGA recommendations for reforming the 
Medicaid program. Witnesses testified on behalf of the National 
Governors' Association, the General Accounting Office, the 
Physician Payment Review Commission, and the Henry J. Kaiser 
Family Foundation.

 reauthorization of the substance abuse and mental health services act 
                                (samhsa)

    On March 18, 1997, the Subcommittee on Health and 
Environment held an oversight hearing on the reauthorization of 
the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration 
(SAMHSA). The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services 
Administration (SAMHSA) was created in 1992 to consolidate the 
Federal government's research and delivery of substance abuse 
prevention and treatment services, and mental health services. 
With respect to substance abuse and mental illnesses, SAMHSA 
supports prevention and early intervention activities; 
develops, identifies, evaluates, and disseminates policies and 
service delivery systems which have been shown to have the best 
outcomes; and attempts to improve access to needed services. 
The Subcommittee heard testimony from representatives of 
SAMHSA, State officials, and national associations.

                   medicare provider service networks

    On March 19, 1997, the Subcommittee on Health and 
Environment held an oversight hearing on establishing provider-
sponsored service organizations (PSOs) under the Medicare 
program. PSOs are health care entities designed and operated by 
physicians and hospitals to deliver health care in a more 
efficient manner by cutting out the administrative costs 
associated with insurance companies and managed care companies. 
Although there is substantial agreement that PSOs should be 
able to participate as Medicare risk contractors, there is a 
fundamental disagreement on how they should be regulated, 
particularly with respect to solvency standards. The purpose of 
this hearing was to hear testimony and provide an initial 
evaluation of the issues surrounding PSOs. The Subcommittee 
received testimony from Members of Congress, a State official, 
and representatives of national associations and health care 
systems.

review of epa's revisions to the national ambient air quality standards 
                    for ozone and particulate matter

    On December 13, 1996, the Environmental Protection Agency 
(EPA) proposed revisions to the national ambient air quality 
standards (NAAQS) for ozone and particulate matter. The 
Subcommittee on Health and Environment and the Subcommittee on 
Oversight and Investigations held five joint hearings on EPA's 
proposed revisions, and one joint hearing on the final revised 
NAAQS that EPA issued on July 18, 1997. These hearings explored 
uncertainties in the scientific bases for EPA's revisions and 
identified significant concerns that had been raised by the 
Department of Energy, the Department of Commerce, and other 
Federal agencies. The Subcommittees also heard State and local 
elected officials express concern regarding EPA's proposed 
implementation plan for the revised standards.
    The Subcommittees' first hearing on April 10, 1997, focused 
on the scientific bases for the proposed revisions. The 
Subcommittees received testimony from a scientific expert panel 
consisting of the current and four former chairmen of the Clean 
Air Scientific Advisory Committee established under the 1990 
amendments to the Clean Air Act. These scientists testified 
that, in many cases, the scientific assumptions used by EPA 
were subject to uncertainty and that the new standards relied 
primarily on epidemiological associations from a limited number 
of studies using data that had not been released for review by 
other scientists. The Committee demanded that EPA release the 
data. As a result of the Committee's efforts, an independent 
scientific review panel is reviewing these key studies. The 
results of that reanalysis will be used in EPA's next scheduled 
5-year review of the revised standards.
    On April 17, 1997, the Subcommittees held a joint hearing 
on Development of the Regulatory Impact Analysis for EPA's 
Proposed Revisions. The Subcommittees received testimony from 
representatives of the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) 
and EPA. These officials testified regarding serious questions 
raised by OMB, the Departments of Energy and Commerce, and 
other Federal agencies during the internal regulatory review of 
EPA's proposed revisions.
    On May 1, 1997, the Subcommittees held a joint hearing on 
Perspectives of State and Local Elected Officials. The 
Subcommittees received testimony from an expert panel of State 
and local elected officials on impacts associated with EPA's 
proposed standards and questions as to the legal authority for 
EPA's proposed implementation plan.
    On May 8, 1997, the Subcommittees held a hearing and 
received testimony from an expert panel regarding the Health 
Effects of Ozone and Particulate Matter.
    On May 15, 1997, the Subcommittees held a joint hearing to 
receive testimony from EPA Administrator Carol M. Browner 
regarding the proposed revisions and certain adverse views 
expressed by other Federal agencies.
    On July 18, 1997, EPA published the final revisions to the 
NAAQS for ozone and particulate matter. Accompanying those 
final rules was a July 16, 1997, Memorandum from the President 
to the Administrator of the EPA regarding Implementation of 
Revised Air Quality Standards for Ozone and Particulate Matter. 
Based largely on issues raised during the five joint 
Subcommittee hearings, the Memorandum outlined an alternative, 
less burdensome approach for implementation of the revised 
standards.
    On October 1, 1997, the Subcommittees held a joint hearing 
on Implementation of the Clean Air Act NAAQS Revisions for 
Ozone and Particulate Matter. The Subcommittees received 
testimony from EPA Administrator Carol M. Browner on EPA's 
legal authority for the alternative implementation plan. The 
Subcommittees also received testimony on implementation from an 
expert panel of State and local officials and representatives 
of small businesses subject to the revised standards. Because 
the legal authority for EPA's alternative implementation plan 
remained uncertain, Congress resolved the ambiguity by 
incorporating certain elements of the alternative 
implementation plan in the Transportation Equity Act for the 
21st Century (Public Law 105-178).

           medicare preventive benefits and quality standards

    On April 11, 1997, the Subcommittee on Health and 
Environment held an oversight hearing on preventive health 
benefits in the Medicare Program. The hearing focused on 
medical tests and screening for Medicare beneficiaries to 
detect health risks at an early stage of a disease, with an 
emphasis on diabetes-related illnesses. Witnesses included the 
Speaker of the House, Members of Congress, and representatives 
of the General Accounting Office, the American Diabetes 
Association, the Washington Hospital Center, the American 
College of Gastroenterology, the American Urological 
Association, Inc., the American Gastroenterology Association, 
and Partnership for Prevention.

  reauthorization of the prescription drug user fee act and fda reform

    In preparation for legislative action on the modernization 
of the Food and Drug Administration, the Subcommittee on Health 
and Environment held an oversight hearing on April 23, 1997, on 
the Reauthorization of the Prescription Drug User Fee Act and 
FDA Reform. This hearing laid the foundation for the eventual 
passage of the Food and Drug Administration Modernization Act 
of 1997 (Public Law 105-115). Witnesses included 
representatives of the Food and Drug Administration, the 
pharmaceutical industry, the National Multiple Sclerosis 
Society, the Children's Brain Tumor Foundation and the American 
Academy of Pediatrics, academic experts, and patients.

  medical devices: technological innovation and provider perspectives

    In preparation for legislative action on the modernization 
of the Food and Drug Administration, the Subcommittee on Health 
and Environment held an oversight hearing on April 30, 1997, on 
Medical Devices: Technological Innovation and Patient/Provider 
Perspectives. This hearing laid the foundation for the eventual 
passage of the Food and Drug Administration Modernization Act 
of 1997 (Public Law 105-115). The Subcommittee received 
testimony from representatives of the Food and Drug 
Administration and State and university hospitals.

   reauthorization of transportation-related air quality improvement 
                                programs

    On June 18, 1997, the Subcommittee on Health and 
Environment held an oversight hearing on the Reauthorization of 
Transportation-Related Air Quality Improvement Programs. The 
Subcommittee heard testimony regarding the reauthorization of 
Congestion Mitigation and Air Quality program (CMAQ) and other 
air quality programs established by the Intermodal Surface 
Transportation Efficiency Act of 1991. Testimony was received 
from witnesses representing the Environmental Protection 
Agency, the Department of Transportation, and national 
alliances.

title vi of the 1990 clean air act and the ninth meeting of the parties 
                        to the montreal protocol

    On July 30, 1997, the Subcommittee on Health and 
Environment held an oversight hearing on the implementation of 
Title VI of the Clean Air Act and plans for the Ninth Meeting 
of the Parties to the Montreal Protocol, held in Montreal in 
September 1997. The Subcommittee received testimony from 
representatives of the General Accounting Office (GAO), the 
Department of State, the Department of Agriculture, and the 
Environmental Protection Agency.
    This hearing focused on a General Accounting Office (GAO) 
report requested by the Committee on Commerce to review the 
operation of the Multilateral Fund of the Montreal Protocol. 
Through 1997, the United States contributed a total of $290 
million to the Fund. The GAO report determined that the United 
States could save between $2 million to $3 million per year by 
changing the form of its payments to the Fund.
    The hearing also focused on the differential in phaseout 
schedules applicable to methyl bromide under the Montreal 
Protocol and the Clean Air Act and plans to address this 
disparity at the Ninth Meeting of the Parties. Additionally, 
testimony was received concerning an Advance Notice of Proposed 
Rulemaking published by the Food and Drug Administration to 
provide for the elimination of essential use exemptions for 
chlorofluorocarbon-based metered-dose inhalers. Finally, the 
hearing addressed the differential in commitments between 
various Parties to the Montreal Protocol, specifically the lack 
of ratification of the London and Copenhagen Amendments to the 
treaty and the lack of reported compliance data indicating that 
countries had met domestic commitments to phaseout ozone 
depleting substances.

           overview of national institutes of health programs

    On September 30, 1997, the Subcommittee on Health and 
Environment held an oversight hearing on the National 
Institutes of Health (NIH). The NIH is the primary agency of 
the Federal government charged with the conduct and support of 
biomedical and behavioral research. Components of NIH include 
20 institutes and centers, each with a focus on particular 
diseases or research areas in human health. Witnesses 
representing various institutes within NIH were the only 
witnesses.

                       transborder air pollution

    On November 18, 1997, the Subcommittee on Health and 
Environment conducted an oversight field hearing in San Diego, 
California, to assess transborder air pollution, including the 
impact of emissions from foreign transborder commuter vehicles 
on air quality. Prior to the hearing, the Subcommittee 
conducted a site visit to the San Ysidro border crossing, south 
of San Diego. At the border, Subcommittee Members received a 
briefing from officials with the U.S. Customs Service, observed 
vehicles crossing the border and being subject to inspection, 
and reviewed application of remote sensing technology to 
measure emissions from vehicles driving past the sensing 
equipment.
    During the hearing, the Subcommittee received testimony 
from U.S. Customs Service officials, State representatives, and 
representatives of local citizen and public health 
organizations. Testimony received indicated that 28 million 
passenger vehicles and over 900,000 buses and trucks per year 
utilize southern California ports of entry. At the San Ysidro 
border crossing alone, an estimated 58,000 vehicles per day 
cross into the United States, of which an estimated 7,000 may 
be classified as commuter vehicles. The field hearing focused 
on the air quality impact of such vehicles on the ozone 
nonattainment status of the San Diego region and possible 
actions to lessen this impact.

                         the tobacco settlement

    The Subcommittee on Health and Environment held four 
oversight hearings in a series of hearings held by the 
Committee and its subcommittees on the ramifications of the 
proposed settlement between the Nation's largest tobacco 
product manufacturers and several State attorneys general. The 
first hearing, held on December 8, 1997, focused on the 
allocation of settlement funds between the States and the 
Medicaid program. The Subcommittee received testimony from 
representatives of the Health Care Financing Administration, a 
governor, and State Attorneys General.
    On December 9, 1997, the Subcommittee held an oversight 
hearing on efforts to prevent teen tobacco use. The 
Subcommittee heard testimony from representatives of the 
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the General 
Accounting Office; State, Federal, and international law 
enforcement officials; academic experts; and tobacco 
wholesalers.
    On March 5, 1998, the Subcommittee held an oversight 
hearing focusing on the views of the public health community on 
national tobacco policy where the Subcommittee received 
testimony from representatives of various advocacy groups.
    On March 19, 1998, the Subcommittee held an oversight 
hearing on the views of the public on national tobacco policy, 
and heard testimony from a panel of witnesses representing 
minority communities and a panel of teenagers.

 preventing the transmission of the human immunodeficiency virus (hiv)

    On February 2, 1998, the Subcommittee on Health and 
Environment held an oversight hearing on preventing the 
transmission of the Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV). The 
hearing focused on strengthening the nation's ability to detect 
HIV infection, help infected people live longer, and to prevent 
the transmission of HIV. Witnesses included representatives of 
the World Health Organization, State and local health agencies, 
Women Against Violence, and the AIDS Policy Center for 
Children, Youth & Families, and private citizens.

          cloning: legal, medical, ethical, and social issues

    On February 12, 1998, the Subcommittee on Health and 
Environment held an oversight hearing on Cloning: Legal, 
Medical, Ethical, and Social Issues. The hearing focused on the 
wide range of arguments regarding human cloning and did not 
focus on any particular piece of legislation. Witnesses 
included Members of Congress, religious leaders, academic 
experts, and representatives of national associations, and 
medical researchers.

          community-based care for americans with disabilities

    On March 12, 1998, the Subcommittee on Health and 
Environment held an oversight hearing on Community-based Care 
for Americans with Disabilities, which examined some of the 
Federally-funded services that are provided to Americans with 
disabilities. In Fiscal Year 1997, the Department of Health and 
Human Services devoted over $62 billion to programs for people 
with disabilities. Witnesses included Members of Congress, and 
representatives of the Department of Health and Human Services, 
the Health Care Financing Administration, State officials, and 
advocates for the disabled, including the National Alliance of 
the Disabled, Inc. and the Voice of the Retarded.
    Disabled persons frequently require personal assistance in 
everyday activities such as eating, dressing, and bathing. This 
assistance in the activities of daily living is known as 
``attendant services.'' Medicaid and other public programs 
currently finance some of these services but usually in the 
context of the disabled person residing in a nursing facility 
or intermediate care facility.
    Several States, however, have experimented with making cash 
payments directly to beneficiaries, allowing them to hire their 
own caregivers and to remain at home. Advocates for these 
programs argue that the programs maximize consumer choice and 
promote efficiency. Advocates have promoted legislation which 
would require Medicaid to cover attendant services in the home 
and other ``community-based'' settings. This hearing assisted 
the Committee in its consideration of efforts to increase 
consumer choice and independent living among the disabled 
community.

      new developments in medical research: nih and patient groups

    On March 26, 1998, the Subcommittee on Health and 
Environment held an oversight hearing on the National 
Institutes of Health (NIH), focusing specifically on new 
developments in medical research. Witnesses included Members of 
Congress, representatives of NIH, national associations, and 
research facilities, and private citizens.

      the ``gift of life'': increasing bone marrow donations and 
                            transplantation

    On April 23, 1998, the Subcommittee on Health and 
Environment held a joint hearing with the Senate Committee on 
Labor and Human Resources Subcommittee on Public Health and 
Safety on ``The Gift of Life'': Increasing Bone Marrow Donation 
and Transplantation. The purpose of the hearing was to consider 
the operation of the National Bone Marrow Donor Program. 
Testimony was received from a Member of Congress, 
representatives of the Department of Health and Human Services, 
the National Institutes of Health, the National Marrow Donor 
Program, and the American Association of Blood Banks, and 
patients.

 department of health and human services inspector general's audit of 
 the health care financing administration's fy 97 financial statements

    On April 24, 1998, the Subcommittee on Health and 
Environment and the Subcommittee on Oversight and 
Investigations of the Committee on Commerce, and the 
Subcommittee on Government Management, Information and 
Technology of the Committee on Government Reform and Oversight 
held a joint oversight hearing on the financial management 
practices at the Health Care Financing Administration (HCFA). 
Specifically, the hearing focused on the findings of the 
Department of Health and Human Services Office of Inspector 
General's audit of HCFA's Fiscal Year 1997 financial statements 
and related reports on internal controls and compliance with 
laws and regulations, as mandated by the Chief Financial 
Officer's Act of 1990 and the Government Management Reform Act 
of 1994.
    Witnesses included the Inspector General of the Department 
of Health and Human Services and the Administrator of the 
Health Care Financing Administration.

 regulatory efforts to phaseout chlorofluorocarbon-based metered-dose 
                                inhalers

    On May 6, 1998, the Subcommittee on Health and Environment 
held an oversight hearing to review an Advance Notice of 
Proposed Rulemaking published in the Federal Register by the 
Food and Drug Administration to remove the essential use status 
of chlorofluorocarbon-based metered-dose inhalers. The 
Subcommittee received testimony from Members of Congress, 
representatives of the Department of State, the Environmental 
Protection Agency, the Food and Drug Administration, 
organizations concerned with asthma and other lung disorders, 
and organizations representing dermatologists and pharmacists, 
and asthma patients.

        reauthorization of the mammography quality standards act

    In preparation for legislative action to reauthorize the 
Mammography Quality Standards Act, on May 8, 1998, the 
Subcommittee on Health and Environment held an oversight 
hearing on Reauthorization of the Mammography Quality Standards 
Act. Witnesses included representatives of the Food and Drug 
Administration, the General Accounting Office, the American 
Cancer Society, the American College of Radiology, the National 
Alliance of Breast Cancer Organizations, and the National 
Breast Cancer Coalition.

     electronic commerce: the promise of better healthcare through 
                              telemedicine

    The Subcommittee on Health and the Environment held one 
hearing as part of the Commerce Committee's electronic commerce 
initiative. On June 5, 1998, the Subcommittee on Health and the 
Environment held an oversight hearing which focused on the use 
of telemedicine to provide better health care. The hearing 
examined the use of information technology to lower cost of 
health care, technological developments affecting the future of 
telemedicine, and barriers to telemedicine. Witnesses included 
a representative from the U.S. Army's Medical Research and 
Material Command, directors of State telemedicine programs, 
executives of industries providing telemedicine services, and 
industry consultants.

   putting patients first: resolving allocation of transplant organs

    On June 18, 1998, the Subcommittee on Health and 
Environment held a joint hearing with the Senate Committee on 
Labor and Human Resources on Putting Patients First: Resolving 
Allocation of Transplant Organs. This hearing addressed 
proposed regulations affecting organ transplantation that were 
published in the Federal Register by the Department of Health 
and Human Services on April 2, 1998. These regulations proposed 
overturning the current system established by the 
transplantation community, and replacing it with a quasi-
national waiting list that would prioritize among the sickest 
patients. Witnesses included the Secretary of Health and Human 
Services, Members of Congress, physicians, patients, and other 
medical experts.

                      the state of cancer research

    On July 20, 1998, the Subcommittee on Health and 
Environment held an oversight hearing on The State of Cancer 
Research, focusing on cancer prevention, detection, and 
treatment. The Subcommittee heard testimony from witnesses 
representing the National Cancer Institute, as well as a number 
of representatives from some of America's most prestigious 
cancer centers.

    the state children's health insurance program: a progress report

    On September 18, 1998, the Subcommittee on Health and 
Environment held an oversight hearing on the development and 
progress of the State Children's Health Insurance Program (S-
CHIP). The hearing focused on the status of the S-CHIP program 
since the program was established under a new Title XXI of the 
Social Security Act, which was created in the Balanced Budget 
Act of 1997 (Public Law 105-33). Witnesses included 
representatives of the Health Care Financing Administration and 
State health administrators from the States of Virginia, 
Michigan, Ohio, Florida, and New York.

                 medicare+choice program after one year

    The Subcommittee on Health and Environment held an 
oversight hearing on October 2, 1998 on the Medicare+Choice 
Program after one year. The purpose of this hearing was to 
receive testimony on the Medicare+Choice Program after one 
year, focusing on the Federal implementation efforts. Witnesses 
included representatives of the Health Care Financing 
Administration, the Medicare Payment Advisory Commission, as 
well as national representatives from the managed care 
industry.

    implementation of the safe drinking water act amendments of 1996

    On October 8, 1998, the Subcommittee on Health and 
Environment held an oversight hearing on the implementation of 
the 1996 Safe Drinking Water Act Amendments (Public Law 104-
182). The hearing received testimony from representatives of 
the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and a panel of expert 
witnesses representing owners and operators of public water 
systems, State and local drinking water officials, public 
health officials, and the environmental community.
    The hearing focused on EPA's progress in meeting statutory 
deadlines established by the 1996 Amendments, the 
implementation of the $8.6 billion State Revolving Fund to 
assist compliance efforts, the amount and adequacy of funding 
devoted to safe drinking water programs, the amount and 
adequacy of funding devoted to research activities required by 
the 1996 Amendments, and challenges that may be presented in 
the future in implementing the 1996 Amendments.

   preventing terrorist access to clean air act section 112(r) risk 
                            management plans

    Under Section 112(r) of the Clean Air Act, the 
Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is required to implement 
a program focused on the prevention of chemical accidents. 
Under EPA's ``Risk Management Program,'' approximately 66,000 
facilities will send EPA detailed information regarding 
potential accidental chemical release points and estimating 
damages and injuries that could result from an absolute worst-
case scenario. The Clean Air Act does not specify the manner by 
which EPA is to disseminate this information to the public. 
EPA, however, planned to make this information available to the 
public on-line via the Internet.
    On September 17, 1998, the Chairman of the Committee on 
Commerce wrote to Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) 
Director to confirm published reports that the FBI and other 
law enforcement groups believe that Internet publication of the 
worst-case scenario data would give foreign based terrorist 
groups the ability to target individual industrial facilities 
in any region of the U.S. with a few clicks on a computer.
    On October 9, 1998, the FBI confirmed in its reply letter 
to the Chairman that EPA's plan would provide a targeting tool 
for a person planning a terrorist or criminal act and that the 
FBI opposed EPA's plan to put the worst-case scenario 
information on the Internet. The FBI also expressed concern 
that, even if EPA did not put the data on the Internet, private 
groups would collect the information and re-distribute it on 
the Internet.
    On October 26, 1998, the Chairman of the Commerce Committee 
wrote to EPA Administrator Carol M. Browner and urged that EPA 
consider fully the impact of its actions on public safety. The 
Chairman also requested information regarding EPA's plan for 
Internet publication of data and the potential for non-
governmental bodies to post this data if EPA decides not to 
publish it on its Internet site.
    The Committee on Commerce will continue to monitor this 
issue in the 106th Congress.

                             Hearings Held

    The Department of Health and Human Services' Proposed 
Budget for Fiscal Year 1998.--Oversight Hearing on the 
Department of Health and Human Services' Proposed Budget for 
Fiscal Year 1998. Hearing held on February 12, 1997. PRINTED, 
Serial Number 105-5.
    Medicare Managed Care: Payment and Related Issues.--
Oversight Hearing on Medicare Managed Care: Payment and Related 
Issues. Hearing held on February 27, 1997. PRINTED, Serial 
Number 105-15.
    Medicare Home Health Care.--Oversight Hearing on Medicare 
Home Health Care. Hearing held on March 5, 1997. PRINTED, 
Serial Number 105-14.
    Assisted Suicide: Legal, Medical, Ethical, and Social 
Issues.--Oversight Hearing on Assisted Suicide: Legal, Medical, 
Ethical, and Social Issues. Hearing held on March 6, 1997. 
PRINTED, Serial Number 105-14.
    Medicaid Reform: The Governors' View.--Oversight Hearing on 
Medicaid Reform: The Governors' View. Hearing held on March 11, 
1997. PRINTED, Serial Number 105-8.
    Reauthorization of the Substance Abuse and Mental Health 
Services Act.--Oversight Hearing on the Reauthorization of the 
Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Act (SAMHSA). 
Hearing held on March 18, 1997. PRINTED, Serial Number 105-50.
    Medicare Provider Service Networks.--Oversight Hearing on 
Medicare Provider Service Networks. Hearing held on March 19, 
1997. PRINTED, Serial Number 105-48.
    Review of the Environmental Protection Agency's Proposed 
Ozone and Particulate Matter NAAQS Revisions--Part 1.--Joint 
Oversight Hearing with the Subcommittee on Oversight and 
Investigations on the Clean Air Scientific Advisory Committee's 
(CASAC) Review. Hearing held on April 10, 1997. PRINTED, Serial 
Number 105-19.
    Medicare Preventive Benefits and Quality Standards.--
Oversight Hearing on Medicare Preventive Benefits and Quality 
Standards. Hearing held on April 11, 1997. PRINTED, Serial 
Number 105-53.
    Review of the Environmental Protection Agency's Proposed 
Ozone and Particulate Matter NAAQS Revisions--Part 1.--Joint 
Oversight Hearing with the Subcommittee on Oversight and 
Investigations on the Development of the Regulatory Impact 
Analysis for EPA's Proposed Revisions. Hearing held on April 
17, 1997. PRINTED, Serial Number 105-19.
    Reauthorization of the Prescription Drug User Fee Act and 
FDA Reform.--Oversight Hearing on the Reauthorization of the 
Prescription Drug User Fee Act and FDA Reform. Hearing held on 
April 23, 1997. PRINTED, Serial Number 105-21.
    Medical Devices: Technological Innovation and Patient/
Provider Perspectives.--Oversight Hearing on Medical Devices: 
Technological Innovation and Patient/Provider Perspectives. 
Hearing held on April 30, 1997. PRINTED, Serial Number 105-20.
    Review of the Environmental Protection Agency's Proposed 
Ozone and Particulate Matter NAAQS Revisions--Part 2.--Joint 
Oversight Hearing with the Subcommittee on Oversight and 
Investigations on the Perspectives of State and Local Elected 
Officials. Hearing held on May 1, 1997. PRINTED, Serial Number, 
105-24.
    Review of the Environmental Protection Agency's Proposed 
Ozone and Particulate Matter NAAQS Revisions--Part 2.--Joint 
Oversight Hearing with the Subcommittee on Oversight and 
Investigations on the Health Effects of Ozone and Particulate 
Matter. Hearing held on May 8, 1997. PRINTED, Serial Number, 
105-24.
    Review of the Environmental Protection Agency's Proposed 
Ozone and Particulate Matter NAAQS Revisions--Part 2.--Joint 
Oversight Hearing with the Subcommittee on Oversight and 
Investigations on the Views of the Environmental Protection 
Agency Administrator. Hearing held May 15, 1997. PRINTED, 
Serial Number 105-24.
    Reauthorization of Transportation-Related Air Quality 
Improvement Programs.--Oversight Hearing on the Reauthorization 
of Transportation-Related Air Quality Improvement Programs. 
Hearing held on June 18, 1997. PRINTED, Serial Number 105-28.
    Title VI of the Clean Air Act and the Ninth Meeting of the 
Parties to the Montreal Protocol.--Oversight Hearing on the 
Implementation of Title VI of the 1990 Clean Air Act Amendments 
and the Plans for the Upcoming Meeting of the Parties to the 
Montreal Protocol in Montreal in September 1997. Hearing held 
on July 30, 1997. PRINTED, Serial Number 105-36.
    Overview of National Institutes of Health Programs.--
Oversight Hearing on an Overview of National Institutes of 
Health Programs. Hearing held on September 30, 1997. PRINTED, 
Serial Number 105-43.
    Implementation of the Clean Air Act National Ambient Air 
Quality Standards (NAAQS) Revisions for Ozone and Particulate 
Matter.--Joint Oversight Hearing with the Subcommittee on 
Oversight and Investigations on the Implementation of the Clean 
Air Act National Ambient Air Quality Standards (NAAQS) 
Revisions for Ozone and Particulate Matter. Hearing held on 
October 1, 1997. PRINTED, Serial Number 105-62.
    Managed Care Quality.--Hearing on Managed Care Quality. 
This hearing also focused on H.R. 1415, the Patient Access to 
Responsible Care Act of 1997, and H.R. 820, the Health 
Insurance Bill of Rights Act of 1997. Hearing held on October 
28, 1997. PRINTED, Serial Number 105-63.
    Transborder Air Pollution, Including the Impact of 
Emissions from Foreign Transborder Commuter Vehicles on Air 
Quality in Border Regions.--Oversight Field Hearing on 
Transborder Air Pollution, Including the Impact of Emissions 
from Foreign Transborder Commuter Vehicles on Air Quality in 
Border Regions. Hearing held in San Diego, California on 
November 18, 1997. PRINTED, Serial Number 105-60.
    The Tobacco Settlement--Part 1.--Oversight Hearing on those 
aspects of the Tobacco Settlement Relating to Medicaid and the 
Allocation of Settlement Funds. Hearing held on December 8, 
1997. PRINTED, Serial Number 105-66.
    The Tobacco Settlement--Part 1.--Oversight Hearing on those 
aspects of the Tobacco Settlement Relating to Preventing Teen 
Tobacco Use. Hearing held on December 9, 1997. PRINTED, Serial 
Number 105-66.
    Preventing the Transmission of the Human Immunodeficiency 
Virus (HIV).--Oversight Hearing on Preventing the Transmission 
of the Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV). Hearing held on 
February 5, 1998. PRINTED, Serial Number 105-71.
    Cloning: Legal, Medical, Ethical, and Social Issues.--
Oversight Hearing on Cloning: Legal, Medical, Ethical, and 
Social Issues. Hearing held on February 12, 1998. PRINTED, 
Serial Number 105-70.
    The Tobacco Settlement--Part 3.--Oversight Hearing on The 
Tobacco Settlement and the Views of the Public Health 
Community. Hearing held on March 5, 1998. PRINTED, Serial 
Number 105-82.
    Community-Based Care for Americans with Disabilities.--
Oversight Hearing on Community-Based Care for Americans with 
Disabilities. Hearing held on March 12, 1998. PRINTED, Serial 
Number 105-98.
    The Tobacco Settlement--Part 3.--Oversight Hearing on The 
Tobacco Settlement and the Views of the Public. Hearing held on 
March 19, 1998. PRINTED, Serial Number 105-82.
    New Developments in Medical Research: NIH and Patient 
Groups.--Oversight Hearing on New Developments in Medical 
Research: NIH and Patient Groups. Hearing held on March 26, 
1998. PRINTED, Serial Number 105-76.
    Implementation of the Reformulated Gasoline Program in 
California.--Hearing on H.R. 630, a bill to amend the Clean Air 
Act to permit the exclusive application of California State 
regulations regarding reformulated gas in certain areas within 
the State. Hearing held on April 22, 1998. PRINTED, Serial 
Number 105-94.
    The ``Gift of Life'': Increasing Bone Marrow Donations and 
Transplantation.--Joint Oversight Hearing with the Senate 
Committee on Labor and Human Resources Subcommittee on Public 
Health and Safety on The ``Gift of Life'': Increasing Bone 
Marrow Donations and Transplantation. Hearing held on April 23, 
1998. PRINTED, Serial Number 105-100.
    Department of Health and Human Services Inspector General's 
Audit of the Health Care Financing Administration's Fiscal Year 
1997 Financial Statements.--Joint Oversight Hearing with the 
Subcommittee on Oversight and Investigations and the Committee 
on Government Reform and Oversight Subcommittee on Government 
Management, Information, and Technology on the Department of 
Health and Human Services Inspector General's Audit of the 
Health Care Financing Administration's Fiscal Year 1997 
Financial Statements. Hearing held on April 24, 1998. PRINTED, 
Serial Number 105-127.
    Regulatory Efforts to Phaseout Chlorofluorocarbon-Based 
Metered-Dose Inhalers.--Oversight Hearing on Regulatory Efforts 
to Phaseout Chlorofluorocarbon-Based Metered-Dose Inhalers. 
Hearing held on May 6, 1998. PRINTED, Serial Number 105-95.
    Reauthorization of the Mammography Quality Standards Act.--
Oversight Hearing on Reauthorization of the Mammography Quality 
Standards Act. Hearing held on May 8, 1998. PRINTED, Serial 
Number 105-88.
    Electronic Commerce--Part 4.--Oversight Hearing on 
Electronic Commerce: The Promise of Better Healthcare Through 
Telemedicine. Hearing held on June 5, 1998. PRINTED, Serial 
Number 105-114.
    Putting Patients First: Resolving Allocation of Transplant 
Organs.--Joint Oversight Hearing with the Senate Committee on 
Labor and Human Resources on Putting Patients First: Resolving 
Allocation of Transplant Organs. Hearing held on June 18, 1998. 
PRINTED, Serial Number 105-107.
    The State of Cancer Research.--Hearing on the State of 
Cancer Research. Hearing held on July 20, 1998. PRINTED, Serial 
Number 105-128.
    The State Children's Health Insurance Program: A Progress 
Report.--Oversight Hearing on The State Children's Health 
Insurance Program: A Progress Report. Hearing held on September 
18, 1998. PRINTED, Serial Number 105-133.
    HIV Partner Protection Act.--Hearing on H.R. 4431, the HIV 
Partner Protection Act. Hearing held on September 29, 1998. 
PRINTED, Serial Number 105-131.
    The Medicare+Choice Program After One Year.--Oversight 
Hearing on The Medicare+Choice Program After One Year. Hearing 
held on October 2, 1998. PRINTED, Serial Number 105-139.
    Implementation of the 1996 Safe Drinking Water Act 
Amendments.--Oversight Hearing on the Implementation of the 
1996 Safe Drinking Water Act Amendments. Hearing held on 
October 8, 1998. PRINTED, Serial Number 105-135.

                    Subcommittee on Energy and Power

                             (Ratio 16-13)

                    DAN SCHAEFER, Colorado, Chairman

MICHAEL D. CRAPO, Idaho              RALPH M. HALL, Texas
  Vice Chairman                      ELIZABETH FURSE, Oregon
MICHAEL BILIRAKIS, Florida           BOBBY L. RUSH, Illinois
J. DENNIS HASTERT, Illinois          KAREN McCARTHY, Missouri
FRED UPTON, Michigan                 ALBERT R. WYNN, Maryland
CLIFF STEARNS, Florida               EDWARD J. MARKEY, Massachusetts
BILL PAXON, New York                 RICK BOUCHER, Virginia
STEVE LARGENT, Oklahoma              EDOLPHUS TOWNS, New York
RICHARD BURR, North Carolina         FRANK PALLONE, Jr., New Jersey
ED WHITFIELD, Kentucky               SHERROD BROWN, Ohio
CHARLIE NORWOOD, Georgia             BART GORDON, Tennessee
RICK WHITE, Washington               PETER DEUTSCH, Florida
TOM COBURN, Oklahoma                 JOHN D. DINGELL, Michigan
JAMES E. ROGAN, California             (Ex Officio)
JOHN SHIMKUS, Illinois
TOM BLILEY, Virginia
  (Ex Officio)

Jurisdiction: National energy policy generally; fossil energy, 
renewable energy resources, and synthetic fuels; energy conservation; 
energy information; energy regulation and utilization; utility issues 
and regulation of nuclear facilities; interstate energy compacts; 
nuclear energy and waste; mining, oil, gas, and coal combustion wastes; 
and all laws, programs, and government activities affecting such 
matters.

                         Legislative Activities

     electric and magnetic fields research and public information 
                    dissemination program extension

                      Public Law 105-23 (H.R. 363)

    To amend section 2118 of the Energy Policy Act of 1992 to 
extend the Electric and Magnetic Fields Research and Public 
Information Dissemination program.

Summary

    H.R. 363 extended, through Fiscal Year 1998, the 
authorization for the Electric and Magnetic Fields Research and 
Public Information Dissemination Program (EMF RAPID), a 
Department of Energy program to study the effects of electric 
and magnetic fields. The program was originally authorized 
under section 2118 of the Energy Policy Act of 1992 (EPAct), 
and its objective was to determine whether or not exposure to 
electric and magnetic fields affects human health. The EPAct 
authorized the EMF RAPID program for five years (Fiscal Years 
1993-1997). However, because the EPAct was enacted after the 
completion of the Fiscal Year 1993 appropriations cycle the 
program did not receive funding until Fiscal Year 1994. The 
extension through Fiscal Year 1998 was needed to bring the 
project to its logical conclusion as originally envisioned in 
the EPAct.

Legislative History

    H.R. 363 was introduced by Mr. Towns on January 7, 1997, 
and was referred to the Committee on Commerce and, in addition, 
to the Committee on Science. Within the Committee on Commerce, 
the bill was referred to the Subcommittee on Energy and Power.
    On February 26, 1997, the Subcommittee on Energy and Power 
held a legislative hearing on H.R. 363. Witnesses included 
Federal government and industry representatives. Immediately 
following the hearing on February 26, 1997, the Subcommittee 
met in open markup session and approved H.R. 363, amended, for 
Full Committee consideration by a voice vote.
    The Full Committee met in open markup session on March 5, 
1997, to consider H.R. 363 and ordered the bill reported to the 
House, as amended, by a voice vote, a quorum being present. The 
Committee on Commerce reported H.R. 363 to the House on April 
21, 1997 (H. Rpt. 105-60, Part 1).
    On April 16, 1997, the Committee on Science met in open 
markup session to consider H.R. 363, and ordered the bill 
reported to the House, amended, by a voice vote. On April 21, 
1997, the Committee on Science reported H.R. 363 to the House 
(H. Rpt. 105-60, Part 2).
    The House considered H.R. 363 under Suspension of the Rules 
on April 29, 1997, and passed the bill by a roll call vote of 
387 yeas to 35 nays.
    On April 30, 1997, H.R. 363 was received in the Senate, 
read twice, and referred to the Committee on Energy and Natural 
Resources. The Senate Committee on Energy and Natural Resources 
met in open markup session on June 11, 1997, and ordered H.R. 
363 favorably reported to the Senate, without amendment, by a 
voice vote. On June 12, 1997, the Senate Committee on Energy 
and Natural Resources reported H.R. 363 to the Senate (S. Rpt. 
105-27).
    On June 20, 1997, by unanimous consent, the Senate 
proceeded to the immediate consideration of H.R. 363 and passed 
the bill, without amendment, clearing the measure for the 
President.
    H.R. 363 was presented to the President on June 24, 1997. 
The President signed H.R. 363 into law on July 3, 1997 (Public 
Law 105-23).

            department of energy standardization act of 1997

                      Public Law 105-28 (H.R. 649)

    To amend sections of the Department of Energy Organization 
Act that are obsolete or inconsistent with other statutes and 
to repeal a related section of the Federal Energy 
Administration Act of 1974.

Summary

    The purpose of H.R. 649 is to eliminate duplicative 
statutory requirements for public involvement in the Federal 
government's rulemaking and advisory committee processes. Prior 
to enactment of this legislation, the Department of Energy 
Organization Act and the Federal Energy Administration Act 
contained separate and conflicting public involvement 
requirements which were inconsistent with the general public 
involvement requirements of the Administrative Procedure Act 
(Public Law 89-554) and the Federal Advisory Committee Act 
(Public Law 92-463).
    This situation resulted in a duplication of effort within 
the Department of Energy as it attempted to comply with the 
different and inconsistent standards of the various statutes. 
H.R. 649 eliminates those provisions of the Department of 
Energy-specific statutes which overlap or conflict with the 
general statutes governing public participation, making the 
Department's rulemaking process and administration of advisory 
committees consistent with that of other Federal agencies.

Legislative History

    Representatives Dan Schaefer and Ralph Hall introduced H.R. 
649 in the House on February 6, 1997. The bill was referred 
solely to the Committee on Commerce.
    On February 26, 1997, the Subcommittee on Energy and Power 
held a legislative hearing on H.R. 649. The only witness was a 
representative from the Department of Energy. Immediately 
following the hearing on February 26, 1997, the Subcommittee on 
Energy and Power met in open markup session and approved H.R. 
649 for Full Committee consideration, without amendment, by a 
voice vote.
    On March 5, 1997, the Full Committee met in open markup 
session to consider H.R. 649 and ordered the bill reported to 
the House, without amendment, by a voice vote, a quorum being 
present. On March 11, 1997, the Committee on Commerce reported 
H.R. 649 to the House (H. Rpt. 105-11). The House considered 
H.R. 649 under Suspension of the Rules on March 11, 1997, and 
passed the bill, by a voice vote, without amendment.
    On March 12, 1997, H.R. 649 was received in the Senate, 
read twice, and referred to the Senate Committee on Energy and 
Natural Resources. On May 21, 1997, the Senate Committee on 
Energy and Natural Resources ordered H.R. 649 reported to the 
Senate without amendment. On June 11, 1997, the Senate 
Committee on Energy and Natural Resources reported H.R. 649 to 
the Senate (S. Rpt. 105-26).
    On June 27, 1997, by unanimous consent, the Senate 
proceeded to the immediate consideration of H.R. 649 and passed 
the bill, without amendment, clearing the measure for the 
President.
    H.R. 649 was presented to the President on July 9, 1997. 
The President signed H.R. 649 into law on July 18, 1997 (Public 
Law 105-28).

                      balanced budget act of 1997

                 Public Law 105-33 (H.R. 2015, S. 947)

    (Title IX--Asset Sales, User Fees, and Miscellaneous Provisions)

    To provide for reconciliation pursuant to subsections 
(b)(1) and (c) of section 105 of the concurrent resolution on 
the budget for fiscal year 1998.

Summary

    Title IX of Public Law 105-33, the Balanced Budget Act of 
1997, contains an energy-related provision which falls within 
the jurisdiction of the Committee on Commerce.
    Section 9303 of the Public Law, Lease of Excess Strategic 
Petroleum Reserve Capacity, permits the Department of Energy to 
lease the excess storage capacity of the Strategic Petroleum 
Reserve (SPR) to foreign governments or their agents. The 
provision allows underutilized SPR capacity in the United 
States to be utilized by foreign governments for petroleum 
product storage and allowing SPR operation costs to be shared 
by potential lessees. Conferees from the Committee on Commerce 
were involved in the negotiations which led to the final 
legislative language.

Legislative History

    On June 11, 1997, the Full Committee considered and 
approved three Committee Prints pertaining to energy issues for 
transmittal to the Committee on the Budget for inclusion in the 
Balanced Budget Act of 1997 as follows.
    A Committee Print entitled ``Title III, Subtitle A--Nuclear 
Regulatory Commission Annual Charges'' was approved by a voice 
vote, a quorum being present. Prior to this action, on June 5, 
1997, the Subcommittee on Energy and Power approved the 
Committee Print for Full Committee consideration, without 
amendment, by a voice vote. This Committee Print extends the 
authority of the Nuclear Regulatory Commission to collect 100 
percent of its budget through user fees through Fiscal Year 
2002.
    A Committee Print entitled ``Title III, Subtitle B--Lease 
of Excess Strategic Petroleum Reserve Capacity'' was approved 
by a voice vote, a quorum being present. Prior to this action, 
on June 5, 1997, the Subcommittee on Energy and Power approved 
the Committee Print for Full Committee consideration, without 
amendment, by a voice vote. This Committee Print allows the 
Department of Energy to lease the excess storage capacity of 
the Strategic Petroleum Reserve to foreign governments or their 
agents.
    A Committee Print entitled ``Title III, Subtitle C--Sale of 
DOE Assets'' was approved, amended, by a voice vote, a quorum 
being present. Prior to this action, on June 5, 1997, the 
Subcommittee on Energy and Power approved the Committee Print 
for Full Committee consideration, without amendment, by a voice 
vote. This Committee Print requires the Department of Energy 
(DOE) to sell 3.2 million pounds of surplus natural and low-
enriched uranium per year between fiscal year 1999-2002 at not 
less than fair market value, subject to a determination such 
sale or sales would not have an adverse material impact on the 
domestic uranium mining, conversion, or enrichment industry.
    On June 17, 1997, the Chairman of the Committee on Commerce 
sent a letter to the Chairman of the Committee on the Budget 
transmitting these three Committee Prints for inclusion in the 
Balanced Budget Act of 1997.
    The provisions of these three Committee Prints were 
included in the text of Title III of H.R. 2015 as reported to 
the House by the Committee on the Budget on June 24, 1997 (H. 
Rpt. 105-149).
    The Committee on Rules met on June 24, 1997, and granted a 
rule providing for the consideration of H.R. 2015. The rule was 
filed in the House as H. Res. 174. On June 25, 1997, the House 
passed H. Res. 174 by a roll call vote of 228 yeas to 200 nays.
    The House considered H.R. 2015 on June 25, 1997, and passed 
the bill, amended, by a roll call vote of 270 yeas to 162 nays. 
On June 25, 1997, H.R. 2015 was received in the Senate and read 
twice.
    On June 20, 1997, the Senate Committee on the Budget 
reported a companion bill to the Senate, which was introduced 
in the Senate as S. 947 (No Written Report). Pursuant to a 
unanimous consent request agreed to on June 20, 1997, the 
Senate began consideration of S. 947 on June 23, 1997. The 
Senate considered S. 947 on June 23, June 24, and June 25, 
1997; and on June 25, 1997, passed S. 947 by a roll call vote 
of 73 yeas to 27 nays. Pursuant to a unanimous consent request 
agreed to on June 24, 1997, the Senate, on June 25, 1997, then 
proceeded to the immediate consideration of H.R. 2015, struck 
all after the enacting clause and inserted in lieu thereof the 
text of S. 947 as passed by the Senate, and passed H.R. 2015. 
By unanimous consent, the Senate postponed further 
consideration of S. 947.
    On June 27, 1997, the Senate insisted on its amendment to 
H.R. 2015, requested a conference with the House, and appointed 
conferees. On July 10, 1997, the House disagreed to the Senate 
amendment to H.R. 2015, agreed to a conference with the Senate, 
and appointed conferees. A motion to instruct the conferees was 
agreed to by a roll call vote of 414 yeas to 14 nays. Members 
of the Committee on Commerce were appointed as conferees.
    During the House-Senate conference, the provisions relating 
to the Nuclear Regulatory Commission Annual Charges and the 
Sale of DOE Assets were deleted from H.R. 2015. On July 30, 
1997, the conference report on H.R. 2015 was filed in the House 
(H. Rpt. 105-347).
    On July 29, 1997, the Committee on Rules met and granted a 
rule waiving clause 4(b) of Rule XI (requiring a 2/3 vote to 
consider a rule on the same day it is reported by the Committee 
on Rules) with respect to the rule on H.R. 2015, or amendments 
in disagreement reported before August 3, 1997, and the rule on 
H.R. 2014 or amendments in disagreement reported before August 
3, 1997. The rule was filed in the House as H. Res. 201. On 
July 30, 1997, the Committee on Rules met and granted a rule 
providing for the consideration of the conference report on 
H.R. 2015. The rule was filed in the House as H. Res. 202. On 
July 30, 1997, the House passed H. Res. 201 by a roll call vote 
of 237 yeas to 187 nays. The House then passed H. Res. 202 by a 
voice vote. Finally, on July 30, 1997, the House agreed to the 
conference report on H.R. 2015 by a roll call vote of 346 yeas 
to 85 nays.
    The Senate considered the conference report on H.R. 2015 on 
July 30, and July 31, 1997; and on July 31, 1997, passed the 
conference report by a roll call vote of 85 yeas to 15 nays, 
clearing the measure for the President.
    H.R. 2015 was presented to the President on August 1, 1997. 
On August 5, 1997, the President signed H.R. 2015 into law 
(Public Law 105-33).

        national defense authorization act for fiscal year 1998

     Public Law 105-85 (H.R. 1119, S. 936, S. 924, S. Con. Res. 64)

                      (Energy Related Provisions)

    To authorize appropriations for fiscal year 1998 for 
military activities of the Department of Defense, for military 
construction, and for defense activities of the Department of 
Energy, to prescribe personnel strengths for such fiscal year 
for the Armed Forces, and for other purposes.

Summary

    Public Law 105-85 includes a number of provisions which 
fall within the jurisdiction of the Committee on Commerce, 
including several dealing with energy related issues. Members 
of the Committee on Commerce were appointed as conferees on 
these provisions and participated in the conference 
negotiations which led to the agreements contained in H.R. 
1119.
    Section 3137 of the Public Law puts limitations on the use 
of funds for laboratory directed research and development 
purposes. This provision should ensure that funding from non-
R&D accounts is not spent on research and development which 
would not be of direct benefit to the paying account. Conferees 
from the Commerce Committee supported the inclusion of this 
language.
    Section 3138 of the Public Law establishes a pilot program 
relating to the use of proceeds of disposal of certain 
Department of Energy assets. The section authorizes the 
Secretary of Energy to retain from the cost of selling, 
leasing, or disposing of an asset an amount equal to the cost 
of the sale, lease, or disposal. These costs include the cost 
of preparing an asset for sale, lease, or disposal. The 
authority is limited to the sale, lease, or disposal of six 
specific Department of Energy assets. Conferees from the 
Commerce Committee supported the inclusion of this language.
    Section 3139 of the Public Law extends the authority for 
the appointment of certain scientific, engineering, and 
technical personnel for the Department of Energy. This will 
allow the Department to continue the hiring of qualified 
professionals without regard to the provisions governing the 
appointments in the competitive service, and General Schedule 
classification schedules and pay rates contained in title 5, 
United States Code. Conferees from the Committee on Commerce 
supported the inclusion of this section.
    Section 3153 of the Public Law establishes a study and 
associated funding relating to the implementation of workforce 
restructuring programs. Conferees from the Commerce Committee 
were involved in the negotiation of compromise language for 
this section.
    Section 3165 of the Public Law authorizes community 
assistance payments from the Department of Energy to Los Alamos 
County under the Atomic Energy Community Act of 1955. Conferees 
from the Committee on Commerce supported the inclusion of this 
section.
    Title XXXII of the Public Law authorizes the activities of 
the Defense Nuclear Facilities Safety Board, and requires a 
study of those activities of the Board which would be more 
efficiently regulated by an external entity. Conferees from the 
Committee on Commerce were involved in the negotiation of 
compromise language for this title and supported its inclusion.
    Section 3402 of the Public Law provides a floor for the 
sale of petroleum from Naval Petroleum Reserves 1, 2, and 3, 
prohibiting any sales at a price under 90 percent of the 
current sales price of comparable petroleum products. Conferees 
from the Committee on Commerce were involved in the formulation 
of this language.
    Section 3404 of the Public Law allows for the disposal of 
portions of the Naval Petroleum Reserve and transfers 
``administrative jurisdiction'' over portions of the Naval 
Petroleum and Oil Shale Reserves to the Secretary of the 
Interior. Conferees from the Committee on Commerce supported 
the inclusion of this section.

Legislative History

    H.R. 1119 was introduced in the House by Representatives 
Spence and Dellums on March 19, 1997, and referred solely to 
the Committee on National Security. The Committee on National 
Security met to consider H.R. 1119 on June 11, 1997, and 
ordered the bill reported to the House, amended, by a roll call 
vote of 51 yeas to 3 nays. On June 16, 1997, the Committee on 
National Security reported H.R. 1119 to the House (H. Rpt. 105-
132).
    The Committee on Rules met on June 18, 1997, and granted a 
rule providing for the consideration of H.R. 1119. The rule was 
filed in the House as H. Res. 169. On June 19, 1997, the House 
passed H. Res. 169, amended, by a roll call vote of 322 yeas to 
101 nays.
    The House considered H.R. 1119 on June 19, June 20, June 
23, June 24, and June 25, 1997; and on June 25, 1997, passed 
the bill, as amended by a roll call vote of 304 yeas to 120 
nays. On July 7, 1997, H.R. 1119 was received in the Senate, 
read twice, and placed on the Senate Calendar.
    On June 17, 1997, the Senate Committee on Armed Services 
reported an original measure to the Senate, which was 
introduced in the Senate by Mr. Thurmond as S. 924 and placed 
on the Senate Calendar (S. Rpt. 105-29). On June 18, 1997, the 
Senate Committee on Armed Services reported an original measure 
to the Senate, which was introduced in the Senate by Mr. 
Thurmond as S. 936 and placed on the Senate Calendar (No 
Written Report).
    The Senate considered S. 936 on June 19, June 20, July 7, 
July 8, July 9, July 10, and July 11, 1997. On July 11, 1997, 
the Senate passed S. 936, amended, by a roll call vote of 94 
yeas to 4 nays. On July 11, 1997, by unanimous consent, the 
Senate agreed to a request that S. Rpt. 105-29, the report to 
accompany S. 924, be deemed to be the report to accompany S. 
936. The Senate then, by unanimous consent, took H.R. 1119 from 
the Senate Calendar and passed the bill, amended with the text 
of S. 936 as passed by the Senate. The Senate insisted on its 
amendment to H.R. 1119, requested a conference with the House, 
and appointed conferees.
    On July 25, 1997, the House disagreed to the Senate 
amendment to H.R. 1119, agreed to a conference with the Senate, 
and appointed conferees. Members of the Committee on Commerce 
were appointed as conferees. The House, on July 25, 1997, also 
agreed by a roll call vote of 414 yeas to 0 nays to a motion to 
instruct the conferees and, by a roll call vote of 409 yeas to 
1 nay, agreed to a motion to close portions of the conference.
    On September 5, 1997, the House agreed to a second motion 
to instruct the conferees by a roll call vote of 261 yeas to 
150 nays. The conference report on H.R. 1119 was filed in the 
House on October 23, 1997 (H. Rpt. 105-340).
    On October 23, 1997, the Committee on Rules met and granted 
a rule providing for the consideration of the conference report 
on H.R. 1119. The rule was filed in the House as H. Res. 278. 
On October 28, 1997, the House passed H. Res. 278 by a roll 
call vote of 353 yeas to 59 nays.
    The House agreed to the conference report by a roll call 
vote of 286 yeas to 123 nays on October 28, 1997. The Senate 
agreed to the conference report by a roll call vote of 90 yeas 
to 10 nays on November 6, 1997.
    On November 6, 1997, the Senate also agreed to S. Con. Res. 
64, a resolution to provide for corrections in the enrollment 
of H.R. 1119, pursuant to a unanimous consent request agreed to 
on October 31, 1997. S. Con. Res. 64 was received in the House 
on November 6, 1997, and held at the desk. No further action 
was taken on S. Con. Res. 64.
    H.R. 1119 was presented to the President on November 6, 
1997. The President signed H.R. 1119 into law on November 18, 
1997 (Public Law 105-85).

      energy policy and conservation act programs reauthorization

              Public Law 105-177 (H.R. 2472, H. Res. 317)

    To extend certain programs under the Energy Policy and 
Conservation Act.

Summary

    H.R. 2472 extends (1) the authorization of appropriations 
for the Strategic Petroleum Reserve through Fiscal Year 1999; 
and (2) all authorities for domestic supply availability and 
for standby energy through September 1, 1999. Enactment of this 
legislation assured that in the event of an energy emergency, 
the President's authority to drawdown the Strategic Petroleum 
Reserve was preserved. H.R. 2472 also preserves and expands the 
ability of U.S. oil companies to participate in the 
International Energy Agreement without violating antitrust 
laws. It also limits drawdown and distribution of petroleum 
products from the Strategic Petroleum Reserve to the purposes 
and proscriptions of the Energy Policy and Conservation Act. 
Finally, H.R. 2472 also requires the annual budget submitted by 
the Secretary of Energy to include a funding request for 
petroleum storage in the Strategic Petroleum Reserve or to 
provide a written explanation why such a request is not 
forthcoming.

Legislative History

    On September 15, 1997, Mr. Dan Schaefer introduced H.R. 
2472 in the House. The bill was referred solely to the 
Committee on Commerce.
    The Subcommittee on Energy and Power held a hearing on H.R. 
2472 on September 16, 1997. Testimony was received from 
representatives of the Department of Energy, State and 
community agencies, and energy service companies. Immediately 
following the hearing on September 16, 1997, the Subcommittee 
on Energy and Power met in open markup session and approved 
H.R. 2472 for Full Committee consideration, without amendment, 
by a voice vote.
    On September 18, 1997, the Full Committee met in open 
markup session and ordered H.R. 2472 reported to the House, 
without amendment, by a voice vote, a quorum being present. The 
Committee on Commerce reported H.R. 2472 to the House on 
September 26, 1997 (H. Rpt. 105-275).
    The House considered H.R. 2472 under Suspension of the 
Rules on September 29, 1997, and passed the bill by a roll call 
vote of 405 yeas to 8 nays.
    On September 30, 1997, H.R. 2472 was received in the Senate 
and read twice. By unanimous consent, the Senate then proceeded 
to the immediate consideration of H.R. 2472 and passed the 
bill, amended. On October 1, 1997, H.R. 2472 was returned to 
the House.
    On November 9, 1997, the House considered H. Res. 317 under 
Suspension of the Rules and passed the resolution by a voice 
vote. H. Res. 317 provided for the agreement of the House to 
the Senate amendment to H.R. 2472 with an amendment.
    On February 12, 1998, H.R. 2472 was laid before the Senate 
and, by unanimous consent, the Senate concurred in the House 
amendment to the Senate amendment to H.R. 2472, with an 
amendment. The Senate then insisted on its amendment and 
requested a conference with the House thereon. On March 23, 
1998, the Senate appointed conferees.
    On May 19, 1998, the House H.R. 2472 under Suspension of 
the Rules and, by a voice vote, concurred in the Senate 
amendment to the House amendment to the Senate amendment to 
H.R. 2472, clearing the measure for the President.
    H.R. 2472 was presented to the President on May 21, 1998. 
The President signed H.R. 2472 into law on June 1, 1998 (Public 
Law 105-177).

             transportation equity act for the 21st century

                Public Law 105-178 (H.R. 2400, S. 1173)

                      (Energy Related Provisions)

    To authorize funds for Federal-aid highways, highway safety 
programs, and transit programs, and for other purposes.

Summary

    Public Law 105-178 includes a number of provisions which 
fall within the jurisdiction of the Committee on Commerce, 
including several dealing with energy related issues. Members 
of the Committee on Commerce were appointed as conferees on 
these provisions and participated in the conference 
negotiations which led to the agreements contained in H.R. 
2400.
    Subtitle (C) of Title VII of Public law 105-178 improves 
the national one-call notification program in order to enhance 
public safety, protect the environment, minimize risks to 
excavators, and prevent disruption of vital public services 
caused by unintentional damage from excavation to underground 
facilities such as natural gas and hazardous liquid pipelines, 
and electric and telecommunication cables.

Legislative History

    H.R. 2400 was introduced in the House on September 4, 1997, 
by Mr. Shuster and three cosponsors. The bill was referred to 
the Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure, and in 
addition to the Committee on the Budget.
    On March 24, 1998, the Committee on Transportation and 
Infrastructure considered H.R. 2400, and ordered the bill 
reported to the House, amended, by a roll call vote of 69 yes 
to 0 nays. On March 25, 1998, the Committee on Transportation 
and Infrastructure reported H.R. 2400 to the House (H. Rpt. 
105-467, Part 1). On March 25, 1998, the referral of H.R. 2400 
to the Committee on the Budget was extended for a period ending 
not later than March 27, 1998. On March 25, 1998, H.R. 2400 was 
also referred, sequentially, to the Committee on Ways and Means 
for a period ending not later than March 27, 1998.
    On March 25, 1998, the Chairman of the Committee on 
Commerce sent a letter to the Chairman of the Committee on 
Transportation and Infrastructure indicating that H.R. 2400, as 
ordered reported, included provisions within the jurisdiction 
of the Commerce Committee. The Chairman further stated that, in 
order to expedite consideration of this measure by the House, 
the Committee on Commerce would not seek a sequential referral 
of H.R. 2400, provided such action would not prejudice the 
Commerce Committee's future jurisdictional interests in the 
legislation. On March 25, 1998, the Chairman of the Committee 
on Transportation and Infrastructure sent a letter to the 
Chairman of the Committee on Commerce acknowledging the 
Commerce Committee's jurisdictional concerns and prerogatives 
with respect to H.R. 2400.
    On March 26, 1998, the Committee on Ways and Means 
considered H.R. 2400, and ordered the bill reported to the 
House, amended, by a voice vote.
    On March 27, 1998, the Committee on Transportation and 
Infrastructure filed a supplemental report on H.R. 2400 in the 
House (H. Rpt. 105-467, Part 2). On March 27, 1998, the 
Committee on Ways and Means reported H.R. 2400 to the House (H. 
Rpt. 105-467, Part 3). On March 27, 1998, the Committee on the 
Budget was discharged from further consideration of H.R. 2400.
    On March 31, 1998, the Committee on Rules met and granted a 
rule providing for the consideration of H.R. 2400. The rule was 
filed in the House as H. Res. 405. The House passed H. Res. 405 
on April 1, 1998, by a roll call vote of 357 yeas to 61 nays. 
The House considered H.R. 2400 on April 1, 1998, and passed the 
bill, amended, by a roll call vote of 337 yeas to 80 nays.
    On April 1, 1998, the House also agreed to a unanimous 
consent request if a message arrived from the Senate indicating 
that the Senate had passed H.R. 2400, with an amendment, 
insisted on its amendment, and requested a conference with the 
House, that the House be deemed to have disagreed to the Senate 
amendment, agreed to the conference with the Senate, and that 
the Speaker appointed conferees without any intervening motion. 
The unanimous consent request also provided for a motion to 
instruct conferees to be offered on the House Floor during the 
week of April 21, 1998, and provided that the managers could 
not file a conference report prior to April 22, 1998.
    H.R. 2400 was received in the Senate on April 2, 1998, and 
read twice.
    On September 12, 1997, S. 1173, a companion bill, was 
introduced in the Senate by Mr. Warner and fourteen cosponsors. 
The bill was read twice and referred to the Senate Committee on 
Environment and Public Works. On September 17, 1997, the Senate 
Committee on Environment and Public Works considered S. 1173 
and ordered the bill reported to the Senate, amended. On 
October 1, 1997, the Senate Committee on Environment and Public 
Works reported S. 1173 to the Senate (S. Rpt. 105-95). The 
Senate considered S. 1173 on October 8, October 20, October 21, 
October 22, October 23, October 24, October 28, and October 29, 
1997. On October 29, 1997, S. 1173 was returned to the Senate 
Calendar.
    On February 26, 1998, the Senate began consideration of S. 
1173 again, and considered the bill on February 26, February 
27, March 2, March 3, March 4, March 5, March 6, March 9, March 
10, March 11, and March 12, 1998. On March 12, 1998, the Senate 
adopted an modified committee amendment in the nature of a 
substitute. S. 1173 was then read for the third time and again 
returned to the Senate Calendar. On April 2, 1998, pursuant to 
a unanimous consent request agreed to on March 12, 1998, the 
Senate proceeded to the immediate consideration of H.R. 2400, 
struck all after the enacting clause and inserted in lieu 
thereof the text of S. 1173 as amended by the Senate, and 
passed H.R. 2400. By unanimous consent, the Senate indefinitely 
postponed S. 1173.
    On April 2, 1998, the Senate insisted on its amendment to 
H.R. 2400, requested a conference with the House, and appointed 
conferees. On April 3, 1998, pursuant to the unanimous consent 
agreement of April 1, 1998, the House disagreed to the Senate 
amendment to H.R. 2400, agreed to a conference with the Senate, 
and appointed conferees. On April 22, 1998, the Speaker 
appointed additional conferees from the Committee on Commerce. 
On April 23, 1998, the Speaker appointed additional conferees 
from the Committee on Science. On May 6, 1998, the Speaker 
appointed additional conferees from the Committee on Ways and 
Means and the Committee on the Budget. On May 20, 1998, a 
motion to instruct conferees passed by a roll call vote of 422 
yeas to 0 nays. On May 21, 1998, a motion to instruct conferees 
was defeated by a roll call vote of 77 yeas to 332 nays, with 1 
voting present. On May 21, 1998, a second motion to instruct 
conferees also was defeated by a roll call vote of 156 yeas to 
251 nays, with 2 voting present. On May 22, 1998, the 
conference report on H.R. 2400 was filed in the House (H. Rpt. 
104-550).
    On May 22, 1998, the Committee on Rules met and granted a 
rule providing for the consideration of the conference report 
on H.R. 2400. The rule was filed in the House as H. Res. 449. 
On May 22, 1998, the House passed H. Res. 449 by a roll call 
vote of 359 yeas to 29 nays. On May 22, 1998, the House also 
agreed to the conference report on H.R. 2400 by a roll call 
vote of 397 yeas to 86 nays.
    The Senate agreed to the conference report on H.R. 2400 on 
May 22, 1998 by a roll call vote of 85 yeas to 15 nays, 
clearing the measure for the President.
    H.R. 2400 was presented to the President on May 28, 1998. 
On June 9, 1998, the President signed H.R. 2400 into law 
(Public Law 105-178).

 extension of the federal power act deadline for the construction of a 
        hydroelectric project located in the state of washington

                     Public Law 105-189 (H.R. 651)

    To extend the deadline under the Federal Power Act for the 
construction of a hydroelectric project located in the State of 
Washington, and for other purposes.

Summary

    The purpose of H.R. 651 is to extend the statutory deadline 
for the commencement of construction of a hydroelectric project 
in the State of Washington (Project No. 8864).
    Section 13 of the Federal Power Act establishes time limits 
for the commencement of construction of hydroelectric projects 
once the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) has issued 
a license. The licensee must begin construction not more than 
two years from the date the license is issued, unless FERC 
extends the deadline. Section 13 permits FERC to grant only one 
two-year extension of that deadline. Therefore, a license is 
subject to termination if a licensee fails to begin 
construction within four years.
    H.R. 651 authorizes FERC to extend the deadline for the 
commencement of construction for a 5.4 megawatt hydroelectric 
project (Project No. 8864) in King County, Washington for up to 
three additional two-year periods. H.R. 651 does not ease the 
requirements of a license, but merely extends the period for 
commencement of construction.

Legislative History

    On February 6, 1997, Mr. White introduced H.R. 651 in the 
House. The bill was referred solely to the Committee on 
Commerce.
    On February 26, 1997, the Subcommittee on Energy and Power 
met in open markup session to consider H.R. 651 and approved 
the bill for Full Committee consideration, without amendment, 
by a voice vote.
    On March 5, 1997, the Full Committee met in open markup 
session to consider H.R. 651 and ordered the bill reported to 
the House, without amendment, by a voice vote, a quorum being 
present. The Committee on Commerce reported H.R. 651 to the 
House on March 11, 1997 (H. Rpt. 105-12).
    On March 11, 1997, the House considered H.R. 651 under 
Suspension of the Rules and passed the bill by a voice vote. 
H.R. 651 was received in the Senate on March 12, 1997, read 
twice, and referred to the Senate Committee on Energy and 
Natural Resources.
    On October 22, 1997, the Senate Committee on Energy and 
Natural Resources ordered H.R. 651 reported to the Senate, 
without amendment. The Senate Committee on Energy and Natural 
Resources reported H.R. 651 to the Senate on November 4, 1997 
(S. Rpt. 105-133). On June 25, 1998, by unanimous consent, the 
Senate proceeded to the immediate consideration of H.R. 651 and 
passed the bill, without amendment, clearing the measure for 
the President.
    H.R. 651 was presented to the President on July 8, 1998. 
The President signed H.R. 651 into law on July 14, 1998 (Public 
Law 105-189).

 extension of the federal power act deadline for the construction of a 
        hydroelectric project located in the state of washington

                     Public Law 105-190 (H.R. 652)

    To extend the deadline under the Federal Power Act for the 
construction of a hydroelectric project located in the State of 
Washington, and for other purposes.

Summary

    The purpose of H.R. 652 is to extend the statutory deadline 
for the commencement of construction of a hydroelectric project 
in the State of Washington (Project No. 9025).
    Section 13 of the Federal Power Act establishes time limits 
for the commencement of construction of hydroelectric projects 
once the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) has issued 
a license. The licensee must begin construction not more than 
two years from the date the license is issued, unless FERC 
extends the deadline. Section 13 permits FERC to grant only one 
two-year extension of that deadline. Therefore, a license is 
subject to termination if a licensee fails to begin 
construction within four years.
    H.R. 652 authorizes FERC to extend the deadline for the 
commencement of construction of a 6.3 megawatt hydroelectric 
project (Project No. 9025) in King County, Washington for up to 
three additional two-year periods. H.R. 652 does not ease the 
requirements of a license, but merely extends the period for 
commencement of construction.

Legislative History

    On February 6, 1997, Mr. White introduced H.R. 652 in the 
House. The bill was referred solely to the Committee on 
Commerce.
    On February 26, 1997, the Subcommittee on Energy and Power 
met in open markup session to consider H.R. 652 and approved 
the bill for Full Committee consideration, without amendment, 
by a voice vote.
    On March 5, 1997, the Full Committee met in open markup 
session to consider H.R. 652 and ordered the bill reported to 
the House, without amendment, by a voice vote, a quorum being 
present. The Committee on Commerce reported H.R. 652 to the 
House on March 11, 1997 (H. Rpt. 105-13).
    On March 11, 1997, the House considered H.R. 652 under 
Suspension of the Rules and passed the bill by a voice vote. 
H.R. 652 was received in the Senate on March 12, 1997, read 
twice, and referred to the Senate Committee on Energy and 
Natural Resources.
    On October 22, 1997, the Senate Committee on Energy and 
Natural Resources ordered H.R. 652 reported to the Senate, 
without amendment. The Senate Committee on Energy and Natural 
Resources reported H.R. 652 to the Senate on November 4, 1997 
(S. Rpt. 105-134). On June 25, 1998, by unanimous consent, the 
Senate proceeded to the immediate consideration of H.R. 652 and 
passed the bill, without amendment, clearing the measure for 
the President.
    H.R. 652 was presented to the President on July 8, 1998. 
The President signed H.R. 652 into law on July 14, 1998 (Public 
Law 105-190).

extension of the federal power act deadline for the construction of the 
               ausable hydroelectric project in new york

                     Public Law 105-191 (H.R. 848)

    To extend the deadline under the Federal Power Act for the 
construction of the AuSable Hydroelectric Project in New York, 
and for other purposes.

Summary

    The purpose of H.R. 848 is to extend the statutory deadline 
for the commencement of construction of the AuSable 
Hydroelectric Project in the State of New York (Project No. 
10836).
    Section 13 of the Federal Power Act establishes time limits 
for the commencement of construction of hydroelectric projects 
once the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) has issued 
a license. The licensee must begin construction not more than 
two years from the date the license is issued, unless FERC 
extends the deadline. Section 13 permits FERC to grant only one 
two-year extension of that deadline. Therefore, a license is 
subject to termination if a licensee fails to begin 
construction within four years.
    H.R. 848 authorizes FERC to extend the deadline for the 
commencement of construction of the AuSable Hydroelectric 
Project, an 800 kilowatt hydroelectric project (Project No. 
10836) in Clinton and Essex Counties, New York. H.R. 848 
reinstates the license and extends the deadline for up to three 
additional two-year periods. H.R. 848 does not ease the 
requirements of a license, but merely extends the period for 
commencement of construction.

Legislative History

    On February 26, 1997, Mr. McHugh introduced H.R. 848 in the 
House. The bill was referred solely to the Committee on 
Commerce.
    On May 22, 1997, the Subcommittee on Energy and Power met 
in open markup session to consider H.R. 848 and approved the 
bill for Full Committee consideration, without amendment, by a 
voice vote.
    On June 4, 1997, the Full Committee met in open markup 
session to consider H.R. 848 and ordered the bill reported to 
the House, without amendment, by a voice vote, a quorum being 
present. The Committee on Commerce reported H.R. 848 to the 
House on June 7, 1997 (H. Rpt. 105-122).
    On June 10, 1997, the House considered H.R. 848 under 
Suspension of the Rules and passed the bill by a voice vote. 
H.R. 848 was received in the Senate on June 11, 1997, read 
twice, and referred to the Senate Committee on Energy and 
Natural Resources.
    On October 22, 1997, the Senate Committee on Energy and 
Natural Resources ordered H.R. 848 reported to the Senate, 
without amendment. The Senate Committee on Energy and Natural 
Resources reported H.R. 848 to the Senate on November 4, 1997 
(S. Rpt. 105-135). On June 25, 1998, by unanimous consent, the 
Senate proceeded to the immediate consideration of H.R. 848 and 
passed the bill, without amendment, clearing the measure for 
the President.
    H.R. 848 was presented to the President on July 8, 1998. 
The President signed H.R. 848 into law on July 14, 1998 (Public 
Law 105-191).

extension of the federal power act deadline for the construction of the 
      bear creek hydroelectric project in the state of washington

                     Public Law 105-192 (H.R. 1184)

    To extend the deadline under the Federal Power Act for the 
construction of the Bear Creek Hydroelectric Project in the 
State of Washington, and for other purposes.

Summary

    The purpose of H.R. 1184 is to extend the statutory 
deadline for the commencement of construction of the Bear Creek 
Hydroelectric Project in the State of Washington (Project No. 
10371).
    Section 13 of the Federal Power Act establishes time limits 
for the commencement of construction of hydroelectric projects 
once the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) has issued 
a license. The licensee must begin construction not more than 
two years from the date the license is issued, unless FERC 
extends the deadline. Section 13 permits FERC to grant only one 
two-year extension of that deadline. Therefore, a license is 
subject to termination if a licensee fails to begin 
construction within four years.
    H.R. 1184 authorizes FERC to extend the deadline for the 
commencement of construction of the Bear Creek Hydroelectric 
Project, a 4 megawatt hydroelectric project (Project No. 10371) 
in Skagit County, Washington. H.R. 1184 reinstates the license 
and extends the deadline for up to three additional two-year 
periods. H.R. 1184 does not ease the requirements of a license, 
but merely extends the period for commencement of construction.
    H.R. 1184 also reenacts a sentence in section 6 of the 
Federal Power Act relating to revocation of hydroelectric 
licenses inadvertently deleted by the General Accounting Office 
Act of 1996 (Public Law 104-316).

Legislative History

    On March 20, 1997, Mr. Metcalf introduced H.R. 1184 in the 
House. The bill was referred solely to the Committee on 
Commerce.
    On May 22, 1997, the Subcommittee on Energy and Power met 
in open markup session to consider H.R. 1184 and approved the 
bill for Full Committee consideration, without amendment, by a 
voice vote.
    On June 4, 1997, the Full Committee met in open markup 
session to consider H.R. 1184 and ordered the bill reported to 
the House, without amendment, by a voice vote, a quorum being 
present. The Committee on Commerce reported H.R. 1184 to the 
House on June 7, 1997 (H. Rpt. 105-123).
    On June 10, 1997, the House considered H.R. 1184 under 
Suspension of the Rules and passed the bill, amended, by a 
voice vote. H.R. 1184 was received in the Senate on June 11, 
1997, read twice, and referred to the Senate Committee on 
Energy and Natural Resources.
    On October 22, 1997, the Senate Committee on Energy and 
Natural Resources ordered H.R. 1184 reported to the Senate, 
without amendment. The Senate Committee on Energy and Natural 
Resources reported H.R. 1184 to the Senate on November 4, 1997 
(S. Rpt. 105-136). On June 25, 1998, by unanimous consent, the 
Senate proceeded to the immediate consideration of H.R. 1184 
and passed the bill, without amendment, clearing the measure 
for the President.
    H.R. 1184 was presented to the President on July 8, 1998. 
The President signed H.R. 1184 into law on July 14, 1998 
(Public Law 105-192).

 extension of the federal power act deadline for the construction of a 
        hydroelectric project located in the state of washington

                     Public Law 105-193 (H.R. 1217)

    To extend the deadline under the Federal Power Act for the 
construction of a hydroelectric project located in the State of 
Washington, and for other purposes.

Summary

    The purpose of H.R. 1217 is to extend the statutory 
deadline for the commencement of construction of a 
hydroelectric project in the State of Washington (Project No. 
10359).
    Section 13 of the Federal Power Act establishes time limits 
for the commencement of construction of hydroelectric projects 
once the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) has issued 
a license. The licensee must begin construction not more than 
two years from the date the license is issued, unless FERC 
extends the deadline. Section 13 permits FERC to grant only one 
two-year extension of that deadline. Therefore, a license is 
subject to termination if a licensee fails to begin 
construction within four years.
    H.R. 1217 directs FERC to extend the deadline for the 
commencement of construction of an 8.3 megawatt hydroelectric 
project (Project No. 10359) in Snohomish County, Washington 
through May 4, 2002. H.R. 1217 does not ease the requirements 
of a license, but merely extends the period for commencement of 
construction.

Legislative History

    On March 21, 1997, Mr. Metcalf introduced H.R. 1217 in the 
House. The bill was referred solely to the Committee on 
Commerce.
    On May 22, 1997, the Subcommittee on Energy and Power met 
in open markup session to consider H.R. 1217 and approved the 
bill for Full Committee consideration, without amendment, by a 
voice vote.
    On June 4, 1997, the Full Committee met in open markup 
session to consider H.R. 1217 and ordered the bill reported to 
the House, without amendment, by a voice vote, a quorum being 
present. The Committee on Commerce reported H.R. 1217 to the 
House on June 7, 1997 (H. Rpt. 105-124).
    On June 10, 1997, the House considered H.R. 1217 under 
Suspension of the Rules and passed the bill by a voice vote. 
H.R. 1217 was received in the Senate on June 11, 1997, read 
twice, and referred to the Senate Committee on Energy and 
Natural Resources.
    On October 22, 1997, the Senate Committee on Energy and 
Natural Resources ordered H.R. 1217 reported to the Senate, 
without amendment. The Senate Committee on Energy and Natural 
Resources reported H.R. 1217 to the Senate on November 4, 1997 
(S. Rpt. 105-137). On June 25, 1998, by unanimous consent, the 
Senate proceeded to the immediate consideration of H.R. 1217 
and passed the bill, without amendment, clearing the measure 
for the President.
    H.R. 1217 was presented to the President on July 8, 1998. 
The President signed H.R. 1217 into law on July 14, 1998 
(Public Law 105-193).

              disposition of depleted uranium hexafluoride

                Public Law 105-204 (S. 2316, H.R. 4215)

    To require the Secretary of Energy to submit to Congress a 
plan to ensure that all amounts accrued on the books of the 
United States Enrichment Corporation for the disposition of 
depleted uranium hexafluoride will be used to treat and recycle 
depleted uranium hexafluoride.

Summary

    In the uranium enrichment process, uranium hexafluoride is 
processed to separate U-235 from U-238. After processing, the 
depleted uranium hexafluoride is placed in canisters for 
storage and, ultimately, disposal. The Uranium Decontamination 
and Decommissioning Fund was established to fund the 
remediation of the gaseous diffusion plants, including 
disposition of these depleted uranium hexafluoride stores.
    Under the United States Enrichment Corporation (USEC) 
Privatization Act of 1996 (Public Law 104-134), all monies 
generated by the sale of the Corporation and currently accrued 
to the Corporation are to be deposited in the general fund of 
the U.S. Treasury. USEC, at the time of its privatization, 
estimated that its activities had generated depleted uranium 
hexafluoride which remediation costs would total nearly $400 
million since the Corporation's genesis in 1992.
    Public Law 105-204 requires the Secretary of Energy to 
prepare, and the President to include in the Fiscal Year 2000 
budget request, a plan and proposed legislation for the 
remediation of these depleted uranium hexafluoride wastes, 
prohibiting expenditures of the Corporation's assets until the 
plan is complete and ensuring availability of funds for the 
decontamination and decommissioning of the gaseous diffusion 
facilities.

Legislative History

    S. 2316 was introduced in the Senate by Senators McConnell 
and DeWine on July 15, 1998, read the first time, and placed on 
the Senate Calendar. On July 16, 1998, the measure was read the 
second time and laid before the Senate by unanimous consent. By 
unanimous consent, the Senate then proceeded to the immediate 
consideration of S. 2316 and passed the bill, amended. S. 2316 
was received in the House on July 17, 1998, and held at the 
desk.
    Two companion bills to S. 2316 were introduced in the 
House. The first, H.R. 4215, was introduced by Representatives 
Whitfield and Strickland on July 14, 1998. H.R. 4215 was 
referred to the Committee on Commerce, and in addition to the 
Committee on the Budget. The second companion bill, H.R. 4234, 
was introduced by Representatives Whitfield, Bunning, 
Strickland, and Baesler on July 15, 1998. H.R. 4234 was also 
referred to the Committee on Commerce, and in addition to the 
Committee on the Budget.
    On July 20, 1998, by unanimous consent, the House 
considered S. 2316 and passed the bill, without amendment, by a 
voice vote, clearing the measure for the President.
    On July 21, 1998, S. 2316 was presented to the President. 
The President signed S. 2316 into law on July 21, 1998 (Public 
Law 105-204).

  extension of the federal power act deadline for the construction of 
             ferc project number 3862 in the state of iowa

                     Public Law 105-211 (H.R. 2165)

    To extend the deadline under the Federal Power Act 
applicable to the construction of FERC Project Number 3862 in 
the State of Iowa, and for other purposes.

Summary

    The purpose of H.R. 2165 is to extend the statutory 
deadline for the commencement of construction of a 
hydroelectric project in the State of Iowa (FERC Project Number 
3862).
    Section 13 of the Federal Power Act establishes time limits 
for the commencement of construction of hydroelectric projects 
once the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) has issued 
a license. The licensee must begin construction not more than 
two years from the date the license is issued, unless FERC 
extends the deadline. Section 13 permits FERC to grant only one 
two-year extension of that deadline. Therefore, a license is 
subject to termination if a licensee fails to begin 
construction within four years.
    H.R. 2165 authorizes FERC to extend the deadline for the 
commencement of construction of a 27 megawatt hydroelectric 
project (Project No. 3862) in Scott County, Iowa. H.R. 2165 
reinstates the license and extends the deadline for up to three 
additional two-year periods. H.R. 2165 does not ease the 
requirements of a license, but merely extends the period for 
commencement of construction.

Legislative History

    On July 15, 1997, Mr. Leach introduced H.R. 2165 in the 
House. The bill was referred solely to the Committee on 
Commerce.
    On September 16, 1997, the Subcommittee on Energy and Power 
met in open markup session to consider H.R. 2165 and approved 
the bill for Full Committee consideration, without amendment, 
by a voice vote.
    On September 18, 1997, the Full Committee met in open 
markup session to consider H.R. 2165 and ordered the bill 
reported to the House, without amendment, by a voice vote, a 
quorum being present. The Committee on Commerce reported H.R. 
2165 to the House on September 26, 1997 (H. Rpt. 105-273).
    On September 29, 1997, the House considered H.R. 2165 under 
Suspension of the Rules. On November 13, 1997, by unanimous 
consent, the House adopted a motion to suspend the Rules and 
pass H.R. 2165 in the form considered by the House on September 
29, 1997. H.R. 2165 was received in the Senate on January 27, 
1998, read twice, and referred to the Senate Committee on 
Energy and Natural Resources.
    On June 24, 1998, the Senate Committee on Energy and 
Natural Resources ordered H.R. 2165 reported to the Senate. The 
Senate Committee on Energy and Natural Resources reported H.R. 
2165 to the Senate on July 2, 1998 (S. Rpt. 105-237). On July 
17, 1998, by unanimous consent, the Senate proceeded to the 
immediate consideration of H.R. 2165 and passed the bill, 
without amendment, clearing the measure for the President.
    H.R. 2165 was presented to the President on July 21, 1998. 
The President signed H.R. 2165 into law on July 29, 1998 
(Public Law 105-211).

  extension of the federal power act deadline for the construction of 
           ferc project number 9248 in the state of colorado

                     Public Law 105-212 (H.R. 2217)

    To extend the deadline under the Federal Power Act 
applicable to the construction of FERC Project Number 9248 in 
the State of Colorado, and for other purposes.

Summary

    The purpose of H.R. 2217 is to extend the statutory 
deadline for the commencement of construction of a 
hydroelectric project in the State of Colorado (FERC Project 
Number 9248).
    Section 13 of the Federal Power Act establishes time limits 
for the commencement of construction of hydroelectric projects 
once the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) has issued 
a license. The licensee must begin construction not more than 
two years from the date the license is issued, unless FERC 
extends the deadline. Section 13 permits FERC to grant only one 
two-year extension of that deadline. Therefore, a license is 
subject to termination if a licensee fails to begin 
construction within four years.
    H.R. 2217 authorizes FERC to extend the deadline for the 
commencement of construction of a 4.6 megawatt hydroelectric 
project (Project No. 9248) in San Miguel County, Colorado 
through January 30, 2002. H.R. 2217 does not ease the 
requirements of a license, but merely extends the period for 
commencement of construction.

Legislative History

    On July 22, 1997, Mr. McInnis introduced H.R. 2217 in the 
House. The bill was referred solely to the Committee on 
Commerce.
    On April 22, 1998, the Subcommittee on Energy and Power met 
in open markup session to consider H.R. 2217 and approved the 
bill for Full Committee consideration, without amendment, by a 
voice vote.
    On April 29, 1998, the Full Committee met in open markup 
session to consider H.R. 2217 and ordered the bill reported to 
the House, without amendment, by a voice vote, a quorum being 
present. The Committee on Commerce reported H.R. 2217 to the 
House on May 6, 1998 (H. Rpt. 105-509).
    On May 12, 1998, the House considered H.R. 2217 under 
Suspension of the Rules and passed the bill by a voice vote. 
H.R. 2217 was received in the Senate on May 13, 1998, read 
twice, and referred to the Senate Committee on Energy and 
Natural Resources.
    On June 24, 1998, the Senate Committee on Energy and 
Natural Resources ordered H.R. 2217 reported to the Senate, 
without amendment. The Senate Committee on Energy and Natural 
Resources reported H.R. 2217 to the Senate on July 2, 1998 (S. 
Rpt. 105-238). On July 17, 1998, by unanimous consent, the 
Senate proceeded to the immediate consideration of H.R. 2217 
and passed the bill, without amendment, clearing the measure 
for the President.
    H.R. 2217 was presented to the President on July 21, 1998. 
The President signed H.R. 2217 into law on July 29, 1998 
(Public Law 105-212).

   extension of time for the construction of a hydroelectric project

                     Public Law 105-213 (H.R. 2841)

    To extend the time required for the construction of a 
hydroelectric project.

Summary

    The purpose of H.R. 2841 is to extend the statutory 
deadline for the commencement of construction of a 
hydroelectric project in the State of Kentucky (Project No. 
10395).
    Section 13 of the Federal Power Act establishes time limits 
for the commencement of construction of hydroelectric projects 
once the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) has issued 
a license. The licensee must begin construction not more than 
two years from the date the license is issued, unless FERC 
extends the deadline. Section 13 permits FERC to grant only one 
two-year extension of that deadline. Therefore, a license is 
subject to termination if a licensee fails to begin 
construction within four years.
    H.R. 2841 authorizes FERC to extend the deadline for the 
commencement of construction of a 35 megawatt hydroelectric 
project (Project No. 10395) in Bracken County, Kentucky for up 
to three additional two-year periods. H.R. 2841 does not ease 
the requirements of a license, but merely extends the period 
for commencement of construction.

Legislative History

    On November 6, 1997, Mr. Bunning introduced H.R. 2841 in 
the House. The bill was referred solely to the Committee on 
Commerce.
    On April 22, 1998, the Subcommittee on Energy and Power met 
in open markup session to consider H.R. 2841 and approved the 
bill for Full Committee consideration, without amendment, by a 
voice vote.
    On April 29, 1998, the Full Committee met in open markup 
session to consider H.R. 2841 and ordered the bill reported to 
the House, without amendment, by a voice vote, a quorum being 
present. The Committee on Commerce reported H.R. 2841 to the 
House on May 6, 1998 (H. Rpt. 105-510).
    On May 12, 1998, the House considered H.R. 2841 under 
Suspension of the Rules and passed the bill by a voice vote. 
H.R. 2841 was received in the Senate on May 13, 1998, read 
twice, and referred to the Senate Committee on Energy and 
Natural Resources.
    On June 24, 1998, the Senate Committee on Energy and 
Natural Resources ordered H.R. 2841 reported to the Senate, 
without amendment. The Senate Committee on Energy and Natural 
Resources reported H.R. 2841 to the Senate on July 2, 1998 (S. 
Rpt. 105-239). On July 17, 1998, by unanimous consent, the 
Senate proceeded to the immediate consideration of H.R. 2841 
and passed the bill, without amendment, clearing the measure 
for the President.
    H.R. 2841 was presented to the President on July 21, 1998. 
The President signed H.R. 2841 into law on July 29, 1998 
(Public Law 105-213).

     texas low-level radioactive waste disposal compact consent act

                 Public Law 105-236 (H.R. 629, S. 270)

    To grant the consent of the Congress to the Texas Low-Level 
Radioactive Waste Disposal Compact.

Summary

    H.R. 629 grants the consent of the Congress to the Texas 
Low-Level Radioactive Waste Disposal Compact, which is 
comprised of the States of Texas, Maine, and Vermont. These 
States have entered into the Compact in fulfillment of their 
responsibilities under the Low-Level Radioactive Waste Policy 
Act (Public Law 96-573) to develop facilities for the disposal 
of low-level radioactive waste generated within their borders. 
The measure is a free-standing piece of legislation and does 
not amend any existing Federal statute.
    The Texas Low-Level Radioactive Waste Disposal Compact has 
been approved by the State legislatures and Governors of Texas, 
Maine, and Vermont. The compact specifies that the State of 
Texas will host the disposal facility and provides that no low-
level radioactive waste may be exported from or imported to the 
regional facility except with the approval of the governing 
commission of the compact. As allowed under the Low-Level 
Radioactive Waste Policy Act, the Compact permits the State of 
Texas to limit access to the disposal facility to those States 
involved in the Compact after such time as Congress, by law, 
consents to the Compact.

Legislative History

    H.R. 629 was introduced by in the House by Mr. Barton and 
21 cosponsors on February 6, 1997. The bill was referred solely 
to the Committee on Commerce.
    On May 13, 1997, the Subcommittee on Energy and Power held 
a legislative hearing on H.R. 629. Witnesses included Members 
of Congress from the State of Texas, representatives from the 
States of Texas and Maine, and private citizens from the State 
of Texas.
    Immediately following the hearing on May 13, 1997, the 
Subcommittee on Energy and Power met in open markup session to 
consider H.R. 629 and approved the bill for Full Committee 
consideration, without amendment, by a voice vote.
    The Full Committee met in open markup session to consider 
H.R. 629 on June 25, 1997, and ordered the bill reported to the 
House, without amendment, by a voice vote. The Committee on 
Commerce reported H.R. 629 to the House on July 15, 1997 (H. 
Rpt. 105-181).
    On October 6, 1997, the Committee on Rules met and granted 
a rule providing for the consideration of H.R. 629. The rule 
was filed in the House as H. Res. 258. The House passed H. Res. 
258 on October 7, 1998, by a voice vote. The House considered 
H.R. 629 on October 7, 1997, and passed the bill amended, by a 
roll call vote of 309 yeas to 107 nays. On October 8, 1997, 
H.R. 629 was received in the Senate, read twice, and placed on 
the Senate Calendar.
    S. 270, a companion bill, was introduced in the Senate by 
Ms. Snowe and three cosponsors on February 5, 1997, read twice, 
and referred to the Senate Committee on the Judiciary. On March 
20, 1997, the Senate Committee on the Judiciary ordered S. 270 
reported to the Senate, without amendment. The Senate Committee 
on the Judiciary reported S. 270 to the Senate on March 20, 
1997 (No Written Report). No further action was taken on S. 270 
in the 105th Congress.
    On April 1, 1998, by unanimous consent, the Senate 
proceeded to the immediate consideration of H.R. 629 and passed 
the bill, amended. H.R. 629 was returned to the House on April 
21, 1998.
    On May 12, 1998, the House disagreed to the Senate 
amendment, requested a conference with the Senate and appointed 
conferees. H.R. 629 was returned to the Senate on May 13, 1998. 
On June 15, 1998, the Senate insisted on its amendment, agreed 
to a conference with the House, and appointed conferees. The 
Senate also agreed, by unanimous consent, to a motion to 
instruct Senate conferees to include the Wellstone amendments 
in any conference agreement. The conference report was filed in 
the House on July 16, 1998 (H. Rpt. 105-630).
    On July 16, 1998, the Committee on Rules met and granted a 
rule providing for the consideration of the conference report. 
The rule was filed in the House as H. Res. 511. On July 29, 
1998, the House passed H. Res. 511 by a roll call vote of 313 
yeas to 108 nays.The House then considered the conference 
report on H.R. 629 and agreed to the conference report by a 
roll call vote of 305 yeas to 117 nays.
    On September 1, 1998, by unanimous consent, the Senate 
began consideration of the conference report on H.R. 629. On 
September 2, 1998, the Senate agreed to the conference report 
by a roll call vote of 78 yeas to 15 nays, clearing the measure 
for the President.
    H.R. 629 was presented to the President on September 10, 
1998. The President signed H.R. 629 into law on September 20, 
1998 (Public Law 105-236).

 strom thurmond national defense authorization act for fiscal year 1999

            Public Law 105-261 (H.R. 3616, S. 2057, S. 2060)

                      (Energy Related Provisions)

    To authorize appropriations for fiscal year 1999 for 
military activities of the Department of Defense, for military 
construction, and for defense activities of the Department of 
Energy, to prescribe personnel strengths for such fiscal year 
for the Armed Forces, and for other purposes.

Summary

    Public Law 105-261 includes a number of provisions which 
fall within the jurisdiction of the Committee on Commerce, 
including several provisions dealing with energy related 
issues. Members of the Committee on Commerce were appointed as 
conferees on these provisions and participated in the 
conference negotiations which led to the agreements contained 
in H.R. 3616.
    Section 3134 of the Public Law provides for licensing by 
the Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) of any facility 
constructed by the Department of Energy (DOE) for the 
fabrication of mixed plutonium-uranium oxide fuel for use in 
commercial nuclear reactors. Conferees from the Committee on 
Commerce supported inclusion of the language.
    Section 3137 of the Public Law provides an alternative 
means of cost recovery for Department of Energy research and 
overhead expenses conducted on behalf of other Federal 
departments and agencies, State and local government agencies, 
and private persons and entities. The language is intended to 
simplify the process by which cost recovery is conducted, and 
its inclusion was supported by conferees from the Committee on 
Commerce.
    Section 3139 of the Public Law establishes an Office of 
River Protection (ORP) at the Hanford site to provide specific 
management for the Tank Waste Remediation System privatization. 
The manager of the ORP will be directly responsible to DOE 
Headquarters for the project, in coordination with the Hanford 
Site Manager. Conferees from the Committee on Commerce 
supported the language's inclusion.
    Section 3144 of the Public Law amends the Atomic Energy Act 
of 1954 to specifically prohibit the use of tritium produced in 
facilities licensed under the Act for nuclear explosive 
purposes.
    Section 3151 of the Public Law provides for a phase out of 
worker and community transition assistance with respect to 
defense nuclear facilities by October 2000. The section also 
provides that such assistance remain in place for workers 
affected by any shutdown of the gaseous diffusion facilities, 
as provided by the USEC Privatization Act of 1996. Conferees 
from the Committee on Commerce were involved in the drafting of 
this language.
    Section 3152 of the Public Law extends the authority for 
the appointment of certain scientific, engineering, and 
technical personnel for the Department of Energy. This will 
allow the Department to continue the hiring of qualified 
professionals without regard to the provisions governing the 
appointments in the competitive service, and General Schedule 
classification schedules and pay rates contained in title 5, 
United States Code. Conferees from the Committee on Commerce 
supported the inclusion of this section.
    Section 3155 of the Public Law provides for an increase in 
the rate of pay for scientific, engineering, and technical 
personnel responsible for safety at defense nuclear facilities. 
Conferees from the Committee on Commerce supported the 
inclusion of this section.
    Section 3201 of the Public Law authorizes the activities of 
the Defense Nuclear Facilities Safety Board. Conferees from the 
Committee on Commerce supported the inclusion of this section.
    Sections 3401-3406 of the Public Law provide for the 
disposal of portions of the Naval Petroleum Reserve and the 
transfer of ``administrative jurisdiction'' over portions of 
the Naval Petroleum and Oil Shale Reserves to the Secretary of 
the Interior.

Legislative History

    H.R. 3616 was introduced in the House by Representatives 
Spence and Skelton on April 1, 1998, and referred solely to the 
Committee on National Security. The Committee on National 
Security met to consider H.R. 3616 on May 6, 1998, and ordered 
the bill reported to the House, amended, by a voice vote. On 
May 12, 1998, the Committee on National Security reported H.R. 
3616 to the House (H. Rpt. 105-532).
    The Committee on Rules met on May 14, 1998, and granted a 
rule providing for the consideration of H.R. 3616. The rule was 
filed in the House as H. Res. 435. On May 19, 1998, the House 
passed H. Res. 435 by a voice vote. On May 19, 1998, the 
Committee on Rules met and granted a second rule providing for 
the further consideration of H.R. 3616. The rule was filed in 
the House as H. Res. 441. On May 20, 1998, the House passed H. 
Res. 441 by a roll call vote of 304 yeas to 108 nays.
    The House considered H.R. 3616 on May 19, May 20, and May 
21, 1998; and on May 21, 1998, passed the bill, amended, by a 
roll call vote of 357 yeas to 60 nays. On May 22, 1998, H.R. 
3616 was received in the Senate, read twice, and placed on the 
Senate Calendar.
    On May 11, 1998, the Senate Committee on Armed Services 
reported an original measure to the Senate, which was 
introduced in the Senate by Mr. Thurmond as S. 2060 and placed 
on the Senate Calendar (S. Rpt. 105-189). On May 11, 1998, the 
Senate Committee on Armed Services reported an original measure 
to the Senate, which was introduced in the Senate by Mr. 
Thurmond as S. 2057 and placed on the Senate Calendar (No 
Written Report).
    The Senate considered S. 2057 on May 13, May 14, June 18, 
June 19, June 22, June 23, June 24, and June 25, 1998. On June 
25, 1998, the Senate passed S. 2057, amended, by a roll call 
vote of 88 yeas to 4 nays. S. 2057 was received in the House on 
July 20, 1998, and held at the desk. On October 21, 1998, S. 
2057 was referred to the House Committee on National Security. 
No further action was taken on S. 2057 in the 105th Congress.
    On June 25, 1998, the Senate, by unanimous consent, took 
H.R. 3616 from the Senate Calendar and passed the bill, amended 
with the text of S. 2057 as passed by the Senate. The Senate 
insisted on its amendment to H.R. 3616, requested a conference 
with the House, and appointed conferees.
    On July 22, 1998, the House disagreed to the Senate 
amendment to H.R. 3616, agreed to a conference with the Senate, 
and appointed conferees. Members of the Committee on Commerce 
were appointed as conferees. On July 22, and July 23, 1998, the 
House considered a motion to instruct the conferees. On July 
23, 1998, the House agreed to a motion to instruct the 
conferees by a roll call vote of 424 yeas to 0 nays, with 1 
voting present. The House also agreed to a motion to close 
portions of the conference by a roll call vote of 412 yeas to 5 
nays.
    The conference report on H.R. 3616 was filed in the House 
on September 22, 1998 (H. Rpt. 105-736).
    The Committee on Rules met on September 23, 1998, and 
granted a rule providing for the consideration of the 
conference report on H.R. 3616. The rule was filed in the House 
as H. Res. 549. On September 24, 1998, the House passed H. Res. 
549 by a voice vote.
    The House agreed to the conference report by a roll call 
vote of 373 yeas to 50 nays on September 24, 1998. The Senate 
considered the conference report on September 30, and October 
1, 1998; and on October 1, 1998, the Senate agreed to the 
conference report by a roll call vote of 96 yeas to 2 nays.
    H.R. 3616 was presented to the President on October 6, 
1998. The President signed H.R. 3616 into law on October 17, 
1998 (Public Law 105-261).

     extension of the federal power act deadline applicable to the 
    construction of a hydroelectric project in the state of arkansas

                     Public Law 105-283 (H.R. 4081)

    To extend the deadline under the Federal Power Act 
applicable to the construction of a hydroelectric project in 
the State of Arkansas.

Summary

    The purpose of H.R. 4081 is to extend the statutory 
deadline for the commencement of construction of a 
hydroelectric project in the State of Arkansas (Project No. 
10455).
    Section 13 of the Federal Power Act establishes time limits 
for the commencement of construction of hydroelectric projects 
once the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) has issued 
a license. The licensee must begin construction not more than 
two years from the date the license is issued, unless FERC 
extends the deadline. Section 13 permits FERC to grant only one 
two-year extension of that deadline. Therefore, a license is 
subject to termination if a licensee fails to begin 
construction within four years.
    H.R. 4081 authorizes the FERC to extend the deadline for 
the commencement of construction for a 600 megawatt 
hydroelectric project (Project No. 10455) in Logan County, 
Arkansas for up to three additional two-year periods. H.R. 4081 
does not ease the requirements of a license, but merely extends 
the period for commencement of construction.

Legislative History

    On June 18, 1998, Mr. Hutchinson introduced H.R. 4081 in 
the House. The bill was referred solely to the Committee on 
Commerce.
    On September 17, 1998, the Subcommittee on Energy and Power 
met in open markup session to consider H.R. 4081 and approved 
the bill for Full Committee consideration, without amendment, 
by a voice vote.
    On September 24, 1998, the Full Committee met in open 
markup session to consider H.R. 4081 and ordered the bill 
reported to the House, without amendment, by a voice vote, a 
quorum being present. The Committee on Commerce reported H.R. 
4081 to the House on September 25, 1998 (H. Rpt. 105-748).
    On September 28, 1998, the House considered H.R. 4081 under 
Suspension of the Rules and passed the bill by a voice vote. 
H.R. 4081 was received in the Senate on October 1, 1998, and 
read twice. On October 7, 1998, by unanimous consent, the 
Senate proceeded to the immediate consideration of H.R. 4081 
and passed the bill, without amendment, clearing the measure 
for the President.
    H.R. 4081 was presented to the President on October 14, 
1998. The President signed H.R. 4081 into law on October 26, 
1998 (Public Law 105-283).

 community opportunities, accountability, and training and educational 
services act or 1998 or the coats human services reauthorization act of 
                                  1998

                Public Law 105-285 (S. 2206, H.R. 4271)

    To amend the Head Start Act, the Low-Income Home Energy 
Assistance Act of 1981, and the Community Services Block Grant 
Act to reauthorize and make improvements to those Acts, to 
establish demonstration projects that provide an opportunity 
for persons with limited means to accumulate assets, and for 
other purposes.

Summary

    Title III of Public Law 105-285 reauthorizes and amends the 
Low Income Home Energy Assistance Act of 1981 (LIHEAP). The 
amendments (1) reauthorize LIHEAP program through Fiscal Year 
2004; (2) improve the ability of the President to release 
contingency funds in the event of natural disasters and 
emergencies by clarifying the criteria for release of these 
funds; (3) reauthorize the leveraging program through Fiscal 
Year 2004, capped at the annual level of $30 million; (4) 
disallow transfer of LIHEAP funds to other Federal block grant 
programs; and (5) require the General Accounting Office to 
evaluate the Residential Energy Assistance Challenge Option 
program (REACH).

Legislative History

    On June 23, 1998, Mr. Coats and three cosponsors introduced 
S. 2206 in the Senate. The bill was read twice and referred to 
the Senate Committee on Labor and Human Resources. The Senate 
Committee on Labor and Human Resources considered S. 2206 on 
June 24, 1998, and ordered the bill reported to the Senate, 
with an amendment in the nature of a substitute. The Senate 
Committee on Labor and Human Resources reported S. 2206 to the 
Senate on July 21, 1998 (S. Rpt. 105-256). On July 27, 1998, by 
unanimous consent, the Senate proceeded to the immediate 
consideration of S. 2206, and passed the bill with an 
amendment. S. 2206 was received in the House on July 28, 1998, 
and held at the desk.
    H.R. 4271, a companion bill, was introduced in the House on 
July 17, 1998, by Mr. Riggs and four cosponsors. The bill was 
referred solely to the Committee on Education and the 
Workforce. The Committee on Education and the Workforce 
considered H.R. 4271 on July 29, 1998, and ordered the bill 
reported to the House, amended, by a voice vote. On August 6, 
1998, the Chairman of the Committee on Commerce sent a letter 
to the Chairman of the Committee on Education and the Workforce 
indicating that H.R. 4271, as ordered reported, included 
provisions within the jurisdiction of the Commerce Committee. 
The Chairman further stated that, in order to expedite 
consideration, of this measure by the House, the Committee on 
Commerce would not seek a sequential referral of H.R. 4271, 
provided such action would not prejudice the Commerce 
Committee's future jurisdictional interests in the legislation. 
The Committee on Education and the Workforce reported H.R. 4271 
to the House on August 7, 1998 (H. Rpt. 105-686). No further 
action was taken on H.R. 4271 in the 105th Congress.
    The House considered S. 2206 under Suspension of the Rules 
on September 14, 1998, and passed the bill with an amendment 
which included provisions of H.R. 4271, as reported to the 
House by the Committee on Education and the Workforce, by a 
roll call vote of 346 yeas to 20 nays. On September 15, 1998, 
S. 2206 was returned to the Senate.
    On September 18, 1998, the Senate disagreed with the House 
amendment to S. 2206, requested a conference with the House, 
and appointed conferees. On September 24, 1998, the House 
insisted on its amendment to S. 2206, agreed to a conference 
with the Senate, and appointed conferees. On September 29, 
1998, the Chairman of the Committee on Commerce sent a letter 
to the Speaker indicated that the Committee on Commerce would 
waive its right to seek conferees for the House-Senate 
conference on S. 2206 in order to expedite consideration of 
this legislation, provided such action would not prejudice the 
Committee's jurisdictional interests or prerogatives in the 
future on LIHEAP or related legislation. The conference report 
on S. 2206 was filed in the House on October 6, 1998 (H. Rpt. 
105-788).
    On October 8, 1998, by unanimous consent, the Senate 
proceeded to the immediate consideration of the conference 
report and agreed to the conference report. On October 9, 1998, 
the House considered the conference report under Suspension of 
the Rules, and agreed to the conference report by a voice vote.
    S. 2206 was presented to the President on October 15, 1998. 
The President signed S. 2206 into law on October 27, 1998 
(Public Law 105-285).

       glacier bay national park boundary adjustment act of 1998

                     Public Law 105-317 (H.R. 3903)

    To provide for an exchange of lands located near Gustavus, 
Alaska, and for other purposes.

Summary

    The purpose of H.R. 3903 is to authorize a land exchange 
between the State of Alaska and the United States to facilitate 
the construction and operation of a small hydroelectric project 
near Gustavus, Alaska. H.R. 3903 makes development of the 
hydroelectric facility possible through an equal value land 
exchange between the United States and the State of Alaska. 
Under the Act, this exchange (and construction of the 
hydroelectric project) is subject to certain conditions. These 
conditions include: (1) a finding by the Federal Energy 
Regulatory Commission (FERC) that the proposed project will 
have no adverse impact on the purposes and values of Glacier 
Bay National Park; and (2) FERC issuance of a license for the 
facility.

Legislative History

    On May 19, 1998, Mr. Young of Alaska introduced H.R. 3903 
in the House. The bill was referred to the Committee on 
Resources, and in addition to the Committee on Commerce. Within 
the Committee on Commerce, the bill was referred to the 
Subcommittee on Energy and Power.
    The Committee on Resources considered H.R. 3903 on July 22, 
1998, and ordered the bill reported to the House, amended, by a 
voice vote.
    During the Resources Committee's consideration of H.R. 
3903, the Committee on Commerce worked with the Resources 
Committee to address the Commerce Committee's concerns with the 
bill. As a result of these negotiations, an agreement was 
reached on a manager's amendment which would be offered on the 
House Floor. On September 8, 1998, the Chairman of the 
Committee on Commerce sent a letter to the Chairman of the 
Committee on Resources indicating that, based on the agreement 
reached between the two Committees, and in order to expedite 
consideration of this measure by the House, the Committee on 
Commerce would not seek an extension of its referral of H.R. 
3903, provided such action would not prejudice the Commerce 
Committee's future jurisdictional interests in the legislation.
    On September 9, 1998, the Chairman of the Committee on 
Resources sent a letter to the Chairman of the Committee on 
Commerce confirming the agreement reached between the two 
Committees on H.R. 3903 and acknowledging the Commerce 
Committee's jurisdictional concerns and prerogatives with 
respect to this bill.
    The Committee on Resources reported H.R. 3903 to the House 
on September 11, 1998 (H. Rpt. 105-706, Part 1). On September 
11, 1998, the referral of H.R. 3903 to the Committee on 
Commerce was extended for a period ending not later than 
September 11, 1998. On September 11, 1998, the Committee on 
Commerce was discharged from further consideration of H.R. 
3903.
    The House considered H.R. 3903 under Suspension of the 
Rules on September 15, 1998, and passed the bill, amended, by a 
voice vote. On September 15, 1998, H.R. 3903 was received in 
the Senate, read twice, and placed on the Senate Calendar.
    On October 2, 1998, by unanimous consent, the Senate 
proceed to the immediate consideration of H.R. 3903, and passed 
the bill without amendment. On October 8, 1998, by unanimous 
consent, the Senate vitiated the passage of H.R. 3903 which 
occurred on October 2, 1998. The Senate then proceeded, by 
unanimous consent, to reconsider H.R. 3903, and passed the 
bill, amended, on October 8, 1998. H.R. 3903 was returned to 
the House on October 9, 1998, and held at the desk.
    On October 10, 1998, by unanimous consent, the House took 
H.R. 3903 from the desk and agreed to the Senate amendment to 
H.R. 3903, clearing the measure for the President.
    H.R. 3903 was presented to the President on October 20, 
1998. The President signed H.R. 3903 into law on October 30, 
1998 (Public Law 105-317).

            energy conservation reauthorization act of 1998

                 Public Law 105-388 (S. 417, H.R. 4017)

    To extend certain programs under the Energy Policy and 
Conservation Act and the Energy Conservation and Production 
Act, and for other purposes.

Summary

    Section 1 of Public Law 105-388 provides a short title. 
Section 2 extends energy conservation programs authorized by 
the Energy Policy and Conservation Act. Section 3 extends an 
energy conservation program authorized by the Energy 
Conservation and Production Act. Section 4 expands use of 
energy savings performance contracts by Federal agencies. 
Section 5 makes technical changes to the Energy Policy and 
Conservation Act, Energy Conservation and Production Act, and 
National Energy Conservation Policy Act, correcting spelling 
errors, punctuation errors, and other errors. Section 6 
restores the authority of the President to allocate materials 
and equipment in order to maximize domestic energy supplies 
under certain circumstances. Section 7 promotes the use of 
biodiesel fuel by providing credits for use of biodiesel fuel 
by fleets and covered persons to offset their obligation to 
purchase alternative fueled vehicles established by the Energy 
Policy Act of 1992. Section 8 amends the Energy Policy Act of 
1992 to require Federal agencies to report on their compliance 
with the alternative fueled vehicle purchase requirements in 
the Act and in Executive Order 13031. Section 9 provides for 
access by the State of Hawaii to petroleum from the Strategic 
Petroleum Reserve in the event of a drawdown. Section 10 
reauthorizes an Indian energy resource development program in 
the Energy Policy Act of 1992. Section 11 amends the Energy 
Policy Act of 1992 to provide additional funds for cleanup of 
contaminated thorium sites.

Legislative History

    On March 10, 1997, Mr. Murkowski introduced S. 417 in the 
Senate. The bill was read twice and referred to the Senate 
Committee on Energy and Natural Resources. On May 21, 1997, the 
Senate Committee on Energy and Natural Resources ordered S. 417 
reported to the Senate, amended. On June 11, 1997, the Senate 
Committee on Energy and Natural Resources reported S. 417 to 
the Senate (S. Rpt. 105-25). On June 27, 1997, the Senate, by 
unanimous consent, proceeded to the immediate consideration of 
S. 417, and passed the bill. S. 417 was received in the House 
on July 8, 1997, and held at the desk.
    On September 16, 1997, the Subcommittee on Energy and Power 
held a hearing on H.R. 2472 which also addressed energy 
conservation and export promotion programs authorized by the 
Energy Policy and Conservation Act and the Energy Conservation 
and Production Act and proposed amendments to the National 
Energy Conservation Policy Act.
    On June 9, 1998, Mr. Dan Schaefer introduced H.R. 4017 in 
the House. The bill was referred solely to the Committee on 
Commerce.
    The Subcommittee on Energy and Power met in open markup 
session to consider H.R. 4017 on June 11, 1998, and the bill 
was approved for Full Committee consideration, without 
amendment, by a voice vote.
    The Full Committee met in open markup session to consider 
H.R. 4017 on August 5, 1998, and ordered the bill reported to 
the House, amended, by a voice vote. The Committee on Commerce 
reported H.R. 4017 to the House on September 17, 1998 (H. Rpt. 
105-727). As reported to the House, H.R. 4017 included 
legislative language representing a substitute for the text of 
H.R. 2658, the Energy Policy Act Amendments of 1997. For the 
legislative history of that bill, see the discussion of H.R. 
2568 in this section.
    On September 28, 1998, the House considered H.R. 4017 under 
Suspension of the Rules, and passed the bill, amended, by a 
voice vote. On September 28, 1998, by unanimous consent, the 
House took S. 417 from the desk and passed the bill after 
striking all after the enacting clause and inserting the text 
of H.R. 4017, as passed by the House. The House also amended 
the title of the Senate bill. H.R. 4017 was then laid on the 
table.
    S. 417 was returned to the Senate on October 1, 1998. On 
October 8, 1998, by unanimous consent, the Senate concurred in 
the House amendments to S. 417 with a further amendment. On 
October 9, 1998, S. 417 was returned to the House. On October 
15, 1998, the House, under Suspension of the Rules, agreed to 
the Senate amendment to the House amendments to S. 417 by a 
voice vote, clearing the measure for the President.
    S. 417 was presented to the President on November 2, 1998. 
The President signed S. 417 into law on November 13, 1998 
(Public Law 105-388).

                    nuclear waste policy act of 1997

                          (H.R. 1270, S. 104)

    To amend the Nuclear Waste Policy Act of 1982.

Summary

    The purpose of H.R. 1270 is to revamp the nation's current 
nuclear waste disposal policy. This is accomplished by 
establishing an integrated management system for the 
transportation, storage, and disposal of high-level radioactive 
waste and spent nuclear fuel.
    H.R. 1270 replaces the Nuclear Waste Policy Act of 1982 
(Public Law 97-425 and amendments of Public Law 100-202 and 
Public Law 100-203), and sets forth three primary goals: (1) 
maintenance of a strong commitment to the permanent repository 
program, which would provide a site for final disposal of U.S. 
spent nuclear fuel and high-level radioactive defense waste; 
(2) construction of an interim storage facility for spent 
nuclear fuel near the Yucca Mountain, Nevada, site, in order to 
fulfill the Department of Energy's obligation to begin 
accepting spent nuclear fuel in 1998; and (3) replacement of 
the current Nuclear Waste Fund financing mechanism with an 
annual fee based on the level of spending for waste disposal 
activities to eliminate further diversions of the current Fund 
for non-nuclear waste disposal policy activities.

Legislative History

    Mr. Upton and 58 cosponsors introduced H.R. 1270 on April 
10, 1997. The measure was referred to the Committee on 
Commerce, and in addition to the Committee on Resources and the 
Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure.
    The Subcommittee on Energy and Power held a legislative 
hearing on H.R. 1270 on April 29, 1997. Witnesses included 
Members of Congress; representatives from the Department of 
Energy, the Nuclear Regulatory Commission, and the Nuclear 
Waste Technical Review Board; State and local government 
representatives, and representatives from nuclear utilities and 
the environmental community.
    On July 31, 1997, the Subcommittee on Energy and Power met 
in open mark-up session to consider H.R. 1270, and approved the 
bill for Full Committee consideration, amended, by a roll call 
vote of 21 yeas to 3 nays.
    The Full Committee met on September 18, 1997, in open 
markup session to consider H.R. 1270, and ordered the measure 
reported to the House, amended, by a roll call vote of 43 yeas 
to 3 nays. On October 1, 1997, the Committee on Commerce 
reported H.R. 1270 to the House (H. Rpt. 105-290, Part 1). On 
October 1, 1997, the referral of H.R. 1270 to the Committee on 
Transportation and Infrastructure was extended for a period 
ending not later than October 1, 1997. On October 1, 1997, the 
Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure was discharged 
from further consideration of H.R. 1270.
    On October 1, 1997, the referral of H.R. 1270 to the 
Committee on Resources was extended for a period ending not 
later than October 21, 1997. The Committee on Resources met on 
October 8, 1997, in open markup session to consider H.R. 1270, 
and ordered the measure reported to the House unfavorably, 
amended, by a voice vote. On October 21, 1997, the Committee on 
Resources reported H.R. 1270 to the House (H. Rpt. 105-290, 
Part 2).
    On October 24, 1997, the Committee on Rules met and granted 
a rule providing for the consideration of H.R. 1270. The rule 
was filed in the House as H. Res. 280. On October 28, 1997, the 
Committee on Rules met and granted a second rule providing for 
the consideration of H.R. 1270. The second rule was filed in 
the House as H. Res. 283. On October 29, 1997, the House passed 
H. Res. 283 by a roll call vote of 259 yeas to 155 nays.
    The House considered H.R. 1270 on October 29 and October 
30, 1997, and on October 30, 1997, passed the bill, amended, by 
a roll call vote of 307 yeas to 120 nays.
    On October 31, 1997, the House passed H. Res. 288 by a roll 
call vote of 214 yeas to 198 nays. H. Res. 288, a resolution 
providing for the consideration of H.R. 2476, included a 
provision which laid H. Res. 280 on the table.
    On February 23, 1998, H.R. 1270 was received in the Senate, 
read twice, and placed on the Senate Calendar.
    On May 22, 1998, an objection was heard to a unanimous 
consent request for the Senate to proceed to the consideration 
of H.R. 1270. A motion to proceed to the consideration of H.R. 
1270 was then made in the Senate, a cloture motion to close 
debate on the motion to proceed to the consideration of H.R. 
1270 was presented in the Senate, and a vote on the cloture 
motion was scheduled for June 2, 1998. The motion to proceed to 
the consideration of H.R. 1270 was then withdrawn on May 22, 
1998, On June 2, 1998, by a roll call vote of 56 yeas to 39 
nays, the Senate failed to close further debate on the motion 
to proceed to the consideration of H.R. 1270. No further action 
on H.R. 1270 was taken by the Senate in the 105th Congress.
    S. 104, a similar bill, was introduced in the Senate on 
January 21, 1997, by Mr. Murkowski and eighteen cosponsors. The 
bill was read twice and referred to the Committee on Energy and 
Natural Resources. On March 13, 1997, the Senate Committee on 
Energy and Natural Resources considered S. 104 and ordered the 
bill reported to the Senate, amended. On March 14, 1997, the 
Senate Committee on Energy and Natural Resources reported S. 
104 to the Senate (No Written Report). The Senate considered S. 
104 on April 9, April 10, April 14, and April 15, 1997; and on 
April 15, 1997, passed the bill amended, by a roll call vote of 
65 yeas to 34 nays. On April 16, 1997, S. 104 was received in 
the House and held at the desk. On March 5, 1998, the House 
passed, by a voice vote, H. Res. 379, a resolution returning S. 
104 to the Senate because S. 104 violated the first clause of 
the seventh section of the first article of the Constitution, 
which requires that all measures raising revenue originate in 
the House. Because S. 104 contained provisions repealing a 
present-law revenue measure and creating a user fee, S. 104 
could not originate in the Senate. No further action was taken 
on S. 104 in the 105th Congress.

             national oilheat research alliance act of 1998

                              (H.R. 3610)

    To authorize and facilitate a program to enhance training, 
research and development, energy conservation and efficiency, 
and consumer education in the oilheat industry for the benefit 
of oilheat consumers and the public, and for other purposes.

Summary

    H.R. 3610 authorizes the oilheat industry to establish an 
oilheat check-off fee to fund research, development, and 
consumer education activities with respect to heating oil and 
heating oil utilization equipment. Under the bill, the oilheat 
industry is authorized to conduct a referendum among its 
retailers and wholesalers for the creation of a National 
Oilheat Research Alliance (NORA or the Alliance). If the 
oilheat industry approves such a referendum, NORA would be 
authorized to collect annual assessments from oilheat 
wholesalers to cover its planning and program costs. The 
Alliance would then be authorized to allocate these collected 
funds to conduct research and development of oilheat 
utilization equipment, to promote consumer education, and to 
inform and educate the public about safety and other issues 
associated with the use of oilheat.

Legislative History

    H.R. 3610 was introduced by Mr. Greenwood and 33 cosponsors 
on March 31, 1998. the bill was referred solely to the 
Committee on Commerce.
    The Subcommittee on Energy and Power held a legislative 
hearing on H.R. 3610, the National Oilheat Research Alliance 
Act of 1998, on June 16, 1998. Testimony was received from 
representatives of the heating oil industry, a natural gas 
distributor, and the Propane Education and Research Council.
    On September 17, 1998, the Subcommittee on Energy and Power 
met in open markup session and approved H.R. 3610 for Full 
Committee consideration, amended, by a voice vote. On September 
24, 1998, the Full Committee met in open markup session and 
ordered H.R. 3610 reported to the House, amended, by a voice 
vote. On October 6, 1998, the Committee on Commerce reported 
H.R. 3610 to the House (H. Rpt. 105-787, Part 1). On October 6, 
1998, H.R. 3610 was referred to the Committee on Science, 
sequentially, for a period ending not later than October 7, 
1998. On October 7, 1998, the Committee on Science was 
discharged from further consideration of H.R. 3610.
    The House considered H.R. 3610 under Suspension of the 
Rules on October 10, 1998, and passed the bill by a voice vote.
    H.R. 3610 was received in the Senate on October 12, 1998. 
No further action was taken by the Senate on this legislation 
in the 105th Congress.

   department of energy civilian research and development act of 1997

                              (H.R. 1277)

    To authorize appropriations for fiscal year 1998 and fiscal 
year 1999 for the civilian research, development, 
demonstration, and commercial application activities of the 
Department of Energy, and for other purposes.

Summary

    The Department of Energy (DOE) conducts a host of research 
and development (R&D) activities originally intended to support 
the DOE's nuclear weapons program. This R&D now also supports a 
myriad of activities surrounding national energy security, such 
as development of alternative fuels, renewable energy sources, 
and the more environmentally-friendly use of fossil fuels. 
Additionally, DOE is involved in developing medical uses for 
nuclear energy, such as boron neutron capture therapy, and 
basic research in areas such as molecular biology and the Human 
Genome Project. Because of the immense environmental 
remediation challenges it faces, the DOE also specializes in 
the research and development of technologies to clean up the 
unique radioactive wastes which contaminate many DOE sites.
    As reported by the Committee on Commerce, H.R. 1277 
provides a specific direction for DOE by: (1) assigning DOE 
specific authorization levels for many research and development 
activities; (2) specifically prohibiting DOE from pursuing R&D 
in several areas: and (3) in many cases, limiting the amount of 
work DOE had intended to do in other areas. The bill contains 
authorization for six primary areas: (1) Energy Supply Research 
and Development; (2) Energy Assets Acquisition; (3) General 
Science and Research; (4) Science Assets Acquisition; (5) 
Fossil Energy Research and Development; and (6) Energy 
Conservation Research and Development.

Legislative History

    H.R. 1277 was introduced in the House by Mr. Calvert on 
April 10, 1997. The bill was referred solely to the Committee 
on Science.
    On April 16, 1997, the Committee on Science considered H.R. 
1277 and ordered the bill reported to the House, amended, by a 
voice vote. On April 22, 1997, the Committee on Science 
reported H.R. 1277 to the House (H. Rpt. 105-67, Part 1). On 
April 22, 1997, H.R. 1277 was referred to the Committee on 
Commerce, sequentially, for a period ending not later than June 
6, 1997.
    The Subcommittee on Energy and Power held a legislative 
hearing on H.R. 1277 on May 20, 1997. A representative from the 
Department of Energy was the sole witness.
    On May 22, 1997, the Subcommittee met in open markup 
session to consider H.R. 1277, and approved the bill, amended, 
for Full Committee consideration by a voice vote.
    The Full Committee met in open markup session on June 4, 
1997, to consider H.R. 1277, and ordered the bill reported to 
the House, amended, by a voice vote. On June 5, 1997, the 
referral of H.R. 1277 to the Committee on Commerce was extended 
for a period ending not later than June 9, 1997. On June 9, 
1997, the Committee on Commerce reported H.R. 1277 to the House 
(H. Rpt. 105-67, Part 2).
    No further action was taken on H.R. 1277 in the 105th 
Congress.

            electric consumers' power to choose act of 1997

                               (H.R. 655)

    To give all American electricity consumers the right to 
choose among competitive providers of electricity, in order to 
secure lower electricity rates, higher quality services, and a 
more robust United States economy, and for other purposes.

Summary

    H.R. 655 requires all States and public power entities to 
allow retail competition in electricity by December 15, 2000. 
If any State or municipal utility elects not to move to retail 
competition, the bill empowers the Federal Energy Regulatory 
Commission (FERC) to put in place a retail competition plan for 
such State or municipal utility. H.R. 655 authorizes 
competition in all retail services, including billing and 
metering. The bill requires States enacting retail competition 
plans to consider whether or not to impose fees for stranded 
costs and to consider issues related environmental impacts, 
universal service and reliability.
    The bill also directs FERC to establish a program to issue 
Renewable Energy Credits to electric generators, providing for 
their sale or exchange. Under this program each electric 
generator selling electric energy after December 31, 2000, is 
required to submit Renewable Energy Credits to FERC in an 
amount equal to the required annual percentage (determined 
according to a specified schedule) of the total electric energy 
it generated in the preceding calendar year.
    H.R. 655 also declares that the Public Utility Holding 
Company Act of 1935 shall cease to apply to any gas or electric 
utility company (including its respective holding company) when 
each State in which such company provides retail distribution 
service notifies FERC and the Securities and Exchange 
Commission of its determination that the pertinent retail 
customers are able to purchase such services at retail from any 
supplier on a competitively neutral and nondiscriminatory 
basis.
    Finally, H.R. 655 amends the Public Utility Regulatory 
Policies Act of 1978 to declare that its requirements that 
electric utilities offer to purchase electric energy from 
qualifying cogeneration and small power production facilities 
at specified costs shall cease to apply to an electric utility 
if the State notifies FERC of its determination that the 
utility's retail customers are able to purchase retail electric 
energy services from any supplier on a competitively neutral 
and nondiscriminatory basis.

Legislative History

    Mr. Dan Schaefer introduced H.R. 655 in the House on 
February 10, 1997. The bill was referred solely to the 
Committee on Commerce.
    On October 21 and 22, 1997, the Subcommittee on Energy and 
Power held legislative hearings on H.R. 655 and several other 
electric utility restructuring proposals. Witnesses included 
representatives from nearly every sector of the electric 
utility industry: investor-owned, municipal and cooperative 
utilities, electricity marketers and independent power 
producers, as well as State regulators and large and small 
consumers.
    No further action was taken on H.R. 655 in the 105th 
Congress.

                  consumers electric power act of 1997

                              (H.R. 1230)

    To give all American electricity consumers the right to 
choose among competitive providers of electricity in order to 
secure lower electricity rates, higher quality services, and a 
more robust United States economy, and for other purposes.

Summary

    H.R. 1230 provides for retail competition in electricity by 
January 1, 1999. Specifically, the bill declares that each 
person has the right to purchase electric service from any 
electric service provider. It also prohibits the imposition of 
exit fees or any other type of ``protection'' from competition 
for utilities. The bill also empowers the Federal Energy 
Regulatory Commission (FERC) to provide for nondiscriminatory 
access to transmission and distribution and to ensure that 
existing utilities cannot exercise market power (including the 
authority to order divestiture or other actions necessary to 
mitigate market power). Finally H.R. 1230 repeals the Public 
Utility Holding Company Act of 1935 and Section 210 of the 
Public Utility Regulatory Policies Act of 1978 when States 
determine that consumers have choice, but does not abrogate 
contracts entered into before the date of enactment.

Legislative History

    H.R. 1230 was introduced in the House by Mr. DeLay on April 
8, 1997. The bill was referred solely to the Committee on 
Commerce.
    On October 21 and 22, 1997, the Subcommittee on Energy and 
Power held legislative hearings on H.R. 1230 and several other 
electric utility restructuring proposals. Witnesses included 
representatives from nearly every sector of the electric 
utility industry: investor-owned, municipal and cooperative 
utilities, electricity marketers and independent power 
producers, as well as State regulators and large and small 
consumers.
    No further action was taken on H.R. 1230 in the 105th 
Congress.

                        ratepayer protection act

                               (H.R. 338)

    To prospectively repeal section 210 of the Public Utility 
Regulatory Policies Act of 1978.

Summary

    H.R. 338 amends the Public Utility Regulatory Policies Act 
of 1978 to repeal its mandatory purchase provisions with 
respect to cogeneration and small power production facilities 
placed in service after its enactment, except with respect to 
power purchase contracts entered into pursuant to such 
provisions which were in effect on the repeal date. The bill 
also provides that after January 7, 1997, no electric utility 
shall be required to enter into a new contract or obligation to 
purchase or sell electric energy or capacity pursuant to the 
provisions of the Public Utility Regulatory Policies Act of 
1978 governing cogeneration and small power production. It also 
directs the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission to promulgate 
and enforce regulations to assure that utilities recover all 
costs associated with contracts for electric energy or capacity 
purchases from a qualifying facility executed prior to January 
7, 1997.

Legislative History

    H.R. 338 was introduced in the House by Mr. Stearns and 
seven cosponsors on January 7, 1997. The bill was referred 
solely to the Committee on Commerce.
    On October 21 and 22, 1997, the Subcommittee on Energy and 
Power held legislative hearings on H.R. 338 and several other 
electric utility restructuring proposals. Witnesses included 
representatives from nearly every sector of the electric 
utility industry: investor-owned, municipal and cooperative 
utilities, electricity marketers and independent power 
producers, as well as State regulators and large and small 
consumers.
    No further action was taken on H.R. 338 in the 105th 
Congress.

        amendments to the public utility regulatory policies act

                              (H.R. 1359)

    To amend the Public Utility Regulatory Policies Act of 1978 
to establish a means to support programs for electric energy 
conservation and energy efficiency, renewable energy, and 
universal and affordable service for electric consumers.

Summary

    H.R. 1359 amends the Public Utility Regulatory Policies Act 
of 1978 to establish a National Electric System Public Benefits 
Fund, which will be administered by the National Electric 
System Public Benefits Board. The fund would provide matching 
funds to States for the support of eligible public purpose 
programs. Specifically, H.R. 1359 requires each electric power 
generation facility owner or operator, as a condition of 
transmitting power to any transmitting utility, to contribute 
funds determined by the Board to be necessary to generate 
revenues in each calendar year equal to one-half of the 
aggregate cost of implementing certain public purpose programs. 
The bill also authorizes any State to establish one or more 
public purpose programs and apply for matching funds under the 
Public Benefits Program. States have the discretion to elect to 
participate in such Program and the program is not intended to 
replace or supersede any existing programs that support or 
encourage conservation and energy efficiency, renewable energy, 
universal and affordable service, or research and development.

Legislative History

    H.R. 1359 was introduced in the House by Mr. DeFazio and 
seven cosponsors on April 17, 1997. The bill was referred 
solely to the Committee on Commerce.
    On October 21 and 22, 1997, the Subcommittee on Energy and 
Power held legislative hearings on H.R. 1359 and several other 
electric utility restructuring proposals. Witnesses included 
representatives from nearly every sector of the electric 
utility industry: investor-owned, municipal and cooperative 
utilities, electricity marketers and independent power 
producers, as well as State regulators and large and small 
consumers.
    No further action was taken on H.R. 1359 in the 105th 
Congress.

       electric power competition and consumer choice act of 1997

                              (H.R. 1960)

    To modernize the Public Utility Holding Company Act of 
1935, the Federal Power Act, the Fair Packaging and Labeling 
Act, and the Public Utility Regulatory Policies Act of 1978 to 
promote competition in the electric power industry, and for 
other purposes.

Summary

    H.R. 1960 directs States and public power providers to 
consider whether they will allow consumers to choose their own 
electricity supplier. It provides certain regulatory relief to 
utilities that opt to offer electric customer choice. 
Specifically, the bill amends the Public Utility Holding 
Company Act of 1935 (PUHCA) to allow States to opt for 
competition by certifying utilities under the jurisdiction of 
their State Utility Commission as ``competitive.'' If deemed 
competitive, the utility is no longer subject to requirements 
under section 210 of the Public Utility Regulatory Policies Act 
of 1978 (PURPA). H.R. 1960 does not abrogate current contracts 
but invokes PURPA requirements if a utility's certification as 
competitive is revoked. PURPA is amended to require each 
utility to meet (a) either the Federal retail competition 
standards or divest itself of its generating assets; and (b) 
public benefit certification.
    H.R. 1960 empowers the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission 
(FERC), by amending the Federal Power Act (FPA), to prevent 
market power, to require generating facilities not currently 
subject to all of the requirements of the Clean Air Act to meet 
current standards, and to establish safety and power standards. 
The bill amends the Fair Labeling Standards Act to empower the 
Federal Trade Commission, in consultation with the 
Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to develop regulations on 
disclosure. The bill also includes privacy protections for 
individuals.
    H.R. 1960 mandates that, starting in 1998, generators must 
have renewable energy credits that amount to 3 percent of their 
generation from renewable resources, increasing to 10 percent 
by 2010. Each electric service provider will be required to 
contribute to maintain universal service, including ``just, 
reasonable, and affordable rates.'' It further amends the FPA 
to empower FERC to oversee mandatory reliability councils to 
which each utility must belong.

Legislative History

    H.R. 1960 was introduced in the House by Mr. Markey on June 
19, 1997. The bill was referred solely to the Committee on 
Commerce.
    On October 21 and 22, 1997, the Subcommittee on Energy and 
Power held legislative hearings on H.R. 1960 and several other 
electric utility restructuring proposals. Witnesses included 
representatives from nearly every sector of the electric 
utility industry: investor-owned, municipal and cooperative 
utilities, electricity marketers and independent power 
producers, as well as State regulators and large and small 
consumers.
    No further action was taken on H.R. 1960 in the 105th 
Congress.

  nuclear regulatory commission authorization act for fiscal year 1999

                              (H.R. 3532)

    To authorize appropriations for the Nuclear Regulatory 
Commission for fiscal year 1999, and for other purposes.

Summary

    H.R. 3532 authorizes the activities of the Nuclear 
Regulatory Commission (NRC or the Commission) for Fiscal Year 
1999, extends the authorization for the NRC to collect 100 
percent of its budget through user fees and annual charges to 
the end of Fiscal Year 2003, and makes a number of changes to 
the Commission's authorizing statutes. The NRC is responsible 
for regulating the nation's utilization of radioactive 
materials and ensuring the protection of public health and 
safety in the use of nuclear materials.
    The proposed changes to the NRC's authorizing statutes have 
been advocated by the Commission. Most deal with updating 
current statutory provisions to reflect the changing regulatory 
framework, the passage of other statutes necessitating changes 
in the NRC statutes, or clarifications of statutory intent.

Legislative History

    H.R. 3532 was introduced in the House by Mr. Dan Schaefer 
on March 24, 1998. The bill was referred solely to the 
Committee on Commerce.
    The Subcommittee on Energy and Power held a legislative 
hearing on the NRC's proposed Fiscal Year 1999 budget and H.R. 
3532 on March 25, 1998. The four Commissioners of the NRC were 
the only witnesses.
    On April 22, 1998, the Subcommittee on Energy and Power met 
in open markup session and approved H.R. 3532, without 
amendment, for Full Committee consideration, by a voice vote.
    On April 29, 1998, the Committee on Commerce met in open 
markup session and ordered H.R. 3532 reported to the House, 
without amendment, by a voice vote, a quorum being present. On 
August 6, 1998, the Committee on Commerce reported H.R. 3532 to 
the House (H. Rpt. 105-680).
    No further action was taken on H.R. 3532 in the 105th 
Congress.

                  energy policy act amendments of 1997

                              (H.R. 2568)

    To amend the Energy Policy Act of 1992 to take into account 
newly developed renewable energy-based fuels and to equalize 
alternative fuel vehicle acquisition incentives to increase the 
flexibility of controlled fleet owners and operators, and for 
other purposes.

Summary

    H.R. 2568 amends the Energy Policy Act of 1992 (EPAct) and 
the Energy Policy and Conservation Act (EPCA) to promote the 
use of biodiesel fuel. Section 101 amends the EPAct to define 
biodiesel and biodiesel blends with at least 20 percent 
biodiesel content as alternative fuels, and creates certain new 
definitions. Section 102 provides that conversion of vehicles 
can be considered acquisition, and defines biodiesel and 
biodiesel blends as ``alternative fuels'' for purposes of EPCA. 
Section 103 amends the EPAct to provide that conversion of 
vehicles is acquisition for purposes of complying with purchase 
mandates; provides for acquisition or conversion of heavy duty 
vehicles or heavy duty marine vessels; and establishes a credit 
for alternative fueled vehicles that demonstrate use of 
alternative fuel. Section 104 directs the Department of Energy 
(DOE) to carry out the EPAct in a manner that is neutral with 
respect to various alternative fuels and vehicles.
    Section 201 amends the State incentives program in the 
EPAct to promote increased use of light and heavy duty 
alternative fueled vehicles. Section 202 permits Federal 
assistance for conversion of school buses. Section 203 directs 
DOE to study alternative fuel use and provides for study of 
marine vessels.
    Section 301 directs DOE to determine whether the goals in 
section 502 of the EPAct should be modified. Section 302 
provides that actions considered or credited as acquisitions 
shall be eligible for credits. Section 303 provides that DOE 
recommendations under the section 509 of the EPAct address 
incentives or requirements for conversions and exemptions for 
replacement fuels from fuel taxes.

Legislative History

    On September 26, 1997, Mr. Shimkus and 23 cosponsors 
introduced H.R. 2568 in the House. The bill was referred solely 
to the Committee on Commerce.
    The Subcommittee on Energy and Power held a legislative 
hearing on H.R. 2568 on July 21, 1998. Witnesses included 
representatives from DOE, the biodiesel industry, an urban 
transit authority, and the alternative fueled vehicle industry.
    No further action was taken on H.R. 2568, however on August 
5, 1998, the Full Committee met in open markup session to 
consider H.R. 4017, and ordered the bill reported to the House, 
amended, by a voice vote. As ordered reported to the House, 
H.R. 4017 included legislative language representing a 
substitute for the text of H.R. 2658, the Energy Policy Act 
Amendments of 1997. This legislative language was eventually 
enacted into law as part of Public Law 105-388. For the 
legislative history of H.R. 4017, see the discussion of that 
bill in this section.

                  amendments to the federal power act

                                (S. 439)

    To provide for Alaska State jurisdiction over small 
hydroelectric projects, to address voluntary licensing of 
hydroelectric projects on fresh waters in the State of Hawaii, 
to provide an exemption for portion of a hydroelectric project 
located in the State of New Mexico, and for other purposes.

Summary

    Section 1 of S. 439 adds a new part 32 to the Federal Power 
Act (FPA) that directs the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission 
(FERC) to discontinue exercising its authority under section 
4(e) and section 23(b) over new, small hydroelectric projects 
(5 megawatts or less) in the State of Alaska upon a FERC 
determination that the State of Alaska has a regulatory program 
for hydroelectric development in place that (1) protects the 
public interest, the purposes listed in (2), and the 
environment to the same extent; (2) gives equal consideration 
to energy conservation, the protection, mitigation of damage 
to, and enhancement of, fish and wildlife, the protection of 
recreational opportunities, the preservation of other aspects 
of environmental quality, the interests of Alaskan Natives, and 
other beneficial uses; and (3) imposes other requirements 
prescribed by Federal and State resource agencies. Existing 
projects may elect to switch to State licensing or regulation 
of their projects. A State license or exemption from licensing 
for hydroelectric projects on Federal public lands would be 
subject to approval by the Federal agency with jurisdiction 
over such lands, and such conditions as the agency may 
prescribe. FERC is required to consult with the Department of 
the Interior and the Department of Agriculture before 
certifying the State of Alaska's regulatory program. FERC is 
authorized to reassert its licensing and regulatory authority 
under the FPA if it finds the State of Alaska does not comply 
with section 1.
    Section 2 amends section 4(e) of the FPA to preclude 
voluntary FERC licensing of hydroelectric projects on fresh 
waters in the State of Hawaii. Section 4(e) authorizes FERC to 
license projects that are not required to be licensed by FERC 
under section 23(b) of the Act. The State of Hawaii has taken 
the position that there is a need to preclude voluntary FERC 
licensing to prevent ``claim jumping'' by business competitors, 
to prevent FERC preemption of State stream regulation, and to 
ensure application of Hawaiian water law. FERC has never 
licensed a hydroelectric project in Hawaii and has no pending 
applications. Projects required to be licensed under section 
23(b) would still have to be licensed.
    Section 3 blocks FERC enforcement action against a 
hydroelectric licensee in New Mexico. The license in question 
required that the licensee obtain control over the transmission 
line associated with the project. Over the past 13 years, the 
licensee has failed to comply with this requirement, despite 
repeated letters and compliance orders from FERC. FERC is 
prepared to take enforcement action against the licensee for 
failure to comply with its license, but has refrained from 
taking such action over the past four years out of deference to 
Congressional interest in the matter. Section 3 provides that 
Part I of the FPA does not apply to the transmission line.
    Section 4 amends section 13 of the Federal Power Act to 
give licensees ten years to commence construction of a 
hydroelectric project. Section 13 requires that licensees begin 
construction not more than two years from the date a license is 
issued, unless FERC extends the initial deadline. However, 
Section 13 permits FERC to grant only one two-year extension of 
that deadline. A license will be terminated if a licensee fails 
to begin construction in a timely manner. Congress has often 
passed legislation to extend the construction deadlines for 
individual projects.
    Section 5 restores a sentence in the FPA that was 
erroneously deleted by the General Accounting Office Act of 
1996. However, that sentence was previously restored in H.R. 
1184 which was enacted into law as Public Law 105-192.

Legislative History

    On March 13, 1997, Mr. Murkowski and two cosponsors 
introduced S. 439 in the Senate. The bill was read twice and 
referred to the Senate Committee on Energy and Natural 
Resources.
    On September 24, 1997, the Senate Committee on Energy and 
Natural Resources ordered S. 439 reported to the Senate, 
amended. The Senate Committee on Energy and Natural Resources 
reported S. 439 to the Senate on October 15, 1997 (S. Rpt. 105-
111).
    On June 25, 1998, the Senate, by unanimous consent, 
proceeded to the immediate consideration of S. 439 and passed 
the bill amended. On July 14, 1998, the bill was received in 
the House and referred solely to the Committee on Commerce.
    On September 25, 1998, the Subcommittee on Energy and Power 
held a hearing on the Federal hydroelectric relicensing 
process. The hearing reviewed the Federal hydroelectric 
relicensing process, assessed whether there is a need to make 
improvements to this process, and focused on whether there is a 
need for Federal legislation to improve the process. The 
hearing also focused on S. 439. Witnesses at the hearing 
included Administration officials, industry representatives, 
State officials, recreational users, and representatives of the 
environmental community.
    No further action was taken on S. 439 in the 105th 
Congress.

                 Oversight or Investigative Activities

      department of energy's proposed budget for fiscal year 1998

    On February 11, 1997, the Subcommittee on Energy and Power 
held an oversight hearing on the Department of Energy's (DOE's) 
budget request for Fiscal Year 1998. The purpose of this 
hearing was to examine the funding priorities within DOE as the 
Department's mission shifts from nuclear weapons production to 
environmental remediation of its contaminated weapons 
facilities. Specifically, the hearing focused on DOE's 
Environmental Management privatization program; the nuclear 
waste program; energy security programs; the Bonneville Power 
Administration; the Strategic Petroleum Reserve; and the 
national laboratories. Testimony was received from the Acting 
Secretary of the Department of Energy and other representatives 
of the Department.

        electricity: why shouldn't all consumers have a choice?

    On April 14, 1997, April 18, 1997, May 2, 1997, and May 9, 
1997, the Subcommittee on Energy and Power held a series of 
four field hearings in Atlanta, Georgia; Richmond, Virginia; 
Chicago, Illinois; and Dallas, Texas, respectively. The purpose 
of this series of hearings was to explore the feasibility and 
desirability of competition in the provision of retail electric 
utility service. The hearings focused on electric utility 
restructuring from a consumer perspective. Witnesses included 
representatives of small and low-income consumers of 
electricity, large consumers, independent power producers, 
utilities, and marketers, and State regulators and legislators.

                electricity: reliability and competition

    On June 19, 1997, the Subcommittee on Energy and Power held 
a hearing on reliability and competition in the electric 
utility industry. The hearing focused on the impact retail 
competition would have on the reliability of the interstate and 
intrastate electricity grids. The hearing also explored who 
should bear the responsibility for enforcing reliability 
standards and who should be required to participate in 
reliability standard setting organizations. Witnesses included 
representatives of electric utilities, an independent power 
producer, a marketer, a State regulator, and a utility worker 
union representative.

          electricity: public power, tva, bpa, and competition

    On July 9, 1997, the Subcommittee on Energy and Power held 
an oversight hearing on the role of public power and Federal 
electric utilities like the Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA), 
the Bonneville Power Administration (PMA), and the Power 
Marketing Administrations (PMAs). The hearing focused on the 
need for Federal legislation to address critical issues 
relating to the participation by public power in competitive 
electric markets and restructure the role of Federal electric 
utilities in these markets. Witnesses included representatives 
of TVA, BPA, electric utilities, State officials, and an Indian 
tribe.

  the economic and environmental impact of the proposed international 
                    global climate change agreement

    On July 15, 1997, the Subcommittee on Energy and Power held 
a hearing on the economic and environmental impact of the 
proposed international global climate change agreement. This 
hearing was a continuation of the Subcommittee's review of the 
Administration's global climate change policies and ongoing 
negotiations under the ``Berlin Mandate.'' The hearing focused 
primarily on the Administration's long-promised economic 
analysis of the international climate change commitments the 
Administration was in the process of negotiating. Also 
discussed at the hearing was the impact future climate change 
commitments would have on jobs and the global economic 
competitiveness of the United States. Witnesses from the 
Department of State and the Council of Economic Advisors 
testified at the hearing.

                electricity: innovation and competition

    On September 5, 1997, the Subcommittee on Energy and Power 
held a hearing on the impact retail competition in electricity 
would have on innovation in the electric utility industry. The 
hearing explored how competition would encourage innovation at 
every level: from generation and transmission to distribution 
and final consumption. Also discussed at the hearing was how 
the innovation spurred by competition could lower the cost of 
electricity, enhance reliability, and bring to the marketplace 
new products and services that give consumers more options. 
Witnesses at the hearing included representatives of electric 
utilities, marketers, and independent power producers, and 
other individuals and representatives of companies that are 
currently offering or planning to offer innovative products and 
services to electric consumers.

       electricity competition: necessary federal and state roles

    On September 24, 1997, the Subcommittee on Energy and Power 
continued its exploration of issues related to retail 
competition in electricity by examining the roles of Federal 
and State regulators and policymakers. The hearing focused on 
legislative and regulatory changes which are necessary to 
provide consumers with retail choice in electricity. Also 
discussed at the hearing were how Federal and State 
policymakers and regulators can work together to assure that in 
an era of retail electric competition consumers have reliable, 
fair, and affordable access to electricity. Witnesses at the 
hearing included a State Governor, State legislators and 
regulators, and other government and private sector individuals 
and companies.

       status of international global climate change negotiations

    On November 5, 1997, the Subcommittee on Energy and Power 
continued its examination of the Administration's global 
climate change policies. This hearing was held shortly before 
the Administration was scheduled to conclude its negotiations 
on the ``Berlin Mandate''. Discussion at the hearing focused on 
expectations for the negotiations in Kyoto, Japan. Also 
discussed at the hearing was the economic impact of the 
Administration's climate policies. Testifying at the hearing 
was the Honorable Timothy Wirth, Under Secretary of Global 
Affairs, Department of State.

      department of energy's proposed budget for fiscal year 1999

    The Subcommittee on Energy and Power held an oversight 
hearing on February 5, 1998, to examine the Department of 
Energy's proposed budget for Fiscal Year 1999. Witnesses 
included the Honorable Elizabeth A. Moler, the Deputy Secretary 
of Energy, and the Honorable Ernest J. Moniz, the Under 
Secretary of Energy. The hearing provided an in-depth look at 
the Department's proposed spending for Fiscal Year 1999 and 
focused on issues related to environmental management and 
restoration; the progress of the Department's site 
characterization effort at the proposed high-level radioactive 
waste repository at Yucca Mountain, Nevada; the nation's energy 
security; the Department's proposed spending on activities to 
address climate change; and general departmental management.

              kyoto protocol and its economic implications

    On March 4, 1998, the Subcommittee on Energy and Power held 
a hearing to examine the impact of the ``Kyoto Protocol'' 
negotiated in December 1997. The two witnesses at this hearing 
were the Honorable Stuart Eizenstat, Under Secretary of State 
for Economic, Business, and Agricultural Affairs, and Dr. Janet 
Yellen, the Chair of the Council of Economic Advisers. 
Discussions focused on the commitments made at Kyoto, Japan; 
the Administration's plans to implement those commitments; and 
the lack of meaningful participation by developing countries in 
the Kyoto Protocol. The Subcommittee also examined the economic 
conclusions offered by the Administration regarding the 
projected costs to the U.S. economy of complying with the 
emission reduction targets contained in the Kyoto Protocol.

     external regulation of department of energy nuclear facilities

    On May 20, 1998, the Subcommittee on Energy and Power held 
an oversight hearing on proposals to require the independent 
regulation of Department of Energy (DOE) nuclear facilities. 
Witnesses from the Department of Energy and the Nuclear 
Regulatory Commission (NRC) testified at the hearing. The 
hearing examined a host of policy and implementation questions 
surrounding external regulation, including: the current state 
of DOE nuclear facilities; increased public confidence in DOE 
operations in an independently regulated environment; national 
security implications; and impacts on the decommissioning of 
DOE facilities.

     electronic commerce: the energy industry in the electronic age

    The Subcommittee on Energy and Power held one hearing as 
part of the Committee on Commerce's electronic commerce 
initiative. On July 15, 1998, the Subcommittee on Energy and 
Power held a hearing which focused on the impact of electronic 
commerce on the energy industry. The hearing examined the rise 
of on-line energy trading systems (sometimes referred to as 
power exchanges); the role of the Federal Energy Regulatory 
Commission's Open Access Same-Time Transmission System (OASIS) 
which provides on-line information to potential customers of 
transmission service; the use of World Wide Web sites by the 
natural gas industry to purchase, schedule, and deliver natural 
gas; and the future role of electronic commerce in promoting 
competition in the electric utility industry. Witnesses include 
representatives of energy trade associations, energy consulting 
firms, and businesses involved in on-line energy trading.

               progress on uranium mill tailings cleanup

    The Subcommittee on Energy and Power, on July 27, 1998, 
held an oversight hearing on the Uranium Mill Tailings 
Radiation Control Act (UMTRCA), which governs the cleanup of a 
host of inactive and active uranium mill sites. The hearing 
examined the progress of the mill tailings remediation program, 
and the need for extended cleanup authority or other statutory 
changes. Testimony was received from representatives of the 
U.S. Department of Energy and the Colorado Department of Public 
Health and Environment and industry witnesses. Topics at the 
hearing included the progress of surface cleanup at Title I 
UMTRCA sites; ongoing groundwater remediation at Title I and 
Title II sites; surface cleanup progress at Title II sites; the 
adequacy of funding under Title X of the Energy Policy Act of 
1992; and outstanding issues surrounding the general success of 
UMTRCA.

               federal hydroelectric relicensing process

    On September 25, 1998, the Subcommittee on Energy and Power 
held an oversight hearing on the Federal hydroelectric 
relicensing process. The hearing reviewed the Federal 
hydroelectric relicensing process, assessed whether there is a 
need to make improvements to this process, and focused on 
whether there is a need for Federal legislation to improve the 
process. The hearing also focused on S. 439, a bill to provide 
for Alaska State jurisdiction over small hydroelectric 
projects, to address voluntary licensing of hydroelectric 
projects on fresh waters in the State of Hawaii, to provide an 
exemption for portion of a hydroelectric project located in the 
State of New Mexico, and for other purposes. Witnesses at the 
hearing included Administration officials, industry 
representatives, State officials, recreational users, and 
representatives of the environmental community.

          energy security: what will the new millennium bring?

    On October 2, 1998, the Subcommittee on Energy and Power 
held an oversight hearing on the progress of energy supply and 
energy security in the 25 years since the Arab oil embargo, and 
examined the prospects for energy security as the United States 
enters the new millennium. Representatives from the Department 
of Energy, the Energy Information Administration, and the 
National Renewable Energy Laboratory, businesses representing 
the major energy sectors, firms involved in high-risk energy 
technology innovations, and think tanks testified at the 
hearing. The future role of fossil fuels, the impacts of energy 
conservation and energy efficiency efforts, and the roles of 
renewable energy and other cutting edge energy technologies 
were examined at the hearing. Also discussed were the important 
policy elements which would insulate the United States in a 
future energy crisis, and the importance of additional steps to 
provide for the Nation's future energy security.

      the kyoto protocol: the outlook for buenos aires and beyond

    On October 6, 1998, the Subcommittee on Energy and Power 
held a hearing to explore expectations for the international 
negotiations in Buenos Aires in November 1998 on the 
implementation of the Kyoto Protocol. This hearing also 
examined in detail the economic analysis of the Kyoto Protocol 
that was released by the Administration in July 1998. This 
report was prepared in part to respond to Subcommittee requests 
for the detailed analysis and specific assumptions used by the 
Administration to reach the economic conclusions offered at the 
March 4, 1998 hearing held by the Subcommittee on Energy and 
Power. The first panel included witnesses from the State 
Department and the Council of Economic Advisers; the second 
panel included three economic experts who provided an 
independent assessment of the economic impacts of the Protocol. 
These experts forecast economic consequences more severe than 
those projected by the Administration.

        transfer of bureau of reclamation hydroelectric projects

    On October 7, 1998, the Subcommittee on Energy and Power 
requested executive comments from the Bureau of Reclamation and 
the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) on various 
issues relating to the transfer of Bureau of Reclamation 
hydroelectric projects to non-Federal entities and the 
licensing of such projects by FERC upon transfer. The 
Subcommittee will continue to monitor this issue in the 106th 
Congress.

                             Hearings Held

    The Department of Energy's Proposed Budget for Fiscal Year 
1998.--Oversight Hearing on the Department of Energy's Proposed 
Budget for Fiscal Year 1998. Hearing held on February 11, 1997. 
PRINTED, Serial Number 105-2.
    Energy Related Legislation.--Hearing on H.R. 363, a bill to 
amend section 2118 of the Energy Policy Act of 1992 to extend 
the Electric and Magnetic Fields Research and Public 
Information Dissemination program; and H.R. 649, the Department 
of Energy Standardization Act of 1997. Hearing held on February 
26, 1997. PRINTED, Serial Number 105-3.
    Electricity Utility Industry Restructuring: Why Shouldn't 
All Consumers Have A Choice?--Oversight Field Hearing in 
Atlanta, Georgia on Electricity Utility Industry Restructuring. 
Hearing held on April 14, 1997. PRINTED, Serial Number 105-40.
    Electricity Utility Industry Restructuring: Why Shouldn't 
All Consumers Have A Choice?--Oversight Field Hearing in 
Richmond, Virginia on Electricity Utility Industry 
Restructuring. Hearing held on April 18, 1997. PRINTED, Serial 
Number 105-40.
    The Nuclear Waste Policy Act of 1997.--Hearing on H.R. 
1270, the Nuclear Waste Policy Act of 1997. Hearing held on 
April 29, 1997. PRINTED, Serial Number 105-27.
    Electricity Utility Industry Restructuring: Why Shouldn't 
All Consumers Have A Choice?--Oversight Field Hearing in 
Chicago, Illinois on Electricity Utility Industry 
Restructuring. Hearing held on May 2, 1997. PRINTED, Serial 
Number 105-40.
    Electricity Utility Industry Restructuring: Why Shouldn't 
All Consumers Have A Choice?--Oversight Field Hearing in 
Dallas, Texas on Electricity Utility Industry Restructuring. 
Hearing held on May 9, 1997. PRINTED, Serial Number 105-40.
     The Texas Low-Level Radioactive Waste Disposal Compact 
Consent Act.--Hearing on H.R. 629, the Texas Low-Level 
Radioactive Waste Disposal Compact Consent Act. Hearing held on 
May 13, 1997. PRINTED, Serial Number 105-17.
    Department of Energy Civilian Research and Development Act 
of 1997.--Hearing on H.R. 1277, the Department of Energy 
Civilian Research and Development Act of 1997. Hearing held on 
May 20, 1997. PRINTED, Serial Number 105-32.
    Electricity: Reliability and Competition.--Oversight 
Hearing on Electricity: Reliability and Competition. Hearing 
held on June 19, 1997. PRINTED, Serial Number 105-25.
    Electricity: Public Power, TVA, BPA, and Competition.--
Oversight Hearing held on Electricity: Public Power, Tennessee 
Valley Authority (TVA), Bonneville Power Administration (BPA), 
and Competition. Hearing held on July 9, 1997. PRINTED, Serial 
Number 105-37.
    International Global Climate Change Negotiations.--
Oversight Hearing held on The Economic and Environmental Impact 
of the Proposed International Global Climate Change Agreement. 
Hearing held on July 15, 1997. PRINTED, Serial Number 105-67.
    Electricity: Innovation and Competition.--Oversight Hearing 
held on Electricity: Innovation and Competition. Hearing held 
on September 5, 1997. PRINTED, Serial Number 105-46.
    Energy Policy and Conservation Act (EPCA) Fiscal Year 1998 
Reauthorization.--Hearing held on H.R. 2472, a bill to extend 
certain programs under the Energy Policy and Conservation Act. 
Hearing held on September 16, 1997. PRINTED, Serial Number 105-
42.
    Electricity Competition: Necessary Federal and State 
Roles.--Oversight Hearing held on Electricity Competition: 
Necessary Federal and State Roles. Hearing held on September 
24, 1997. PRINTED, Serial Number 105-49.
    Electricity Competition.--Hearing held on H.R. 655, the 
Electric Consumers' Power to Choose Act of 1997; H.R. 338, the 
Ratepayer Protection Act; the H.R. 1230, the Consumers Electric 
Power Act of 1997; the H.R. 1359, a bill to amend the Public 
Utility Regulatory Policies Act of 1978 to establish a means to 
support programs for electric energy conservation and energy 
efficiency, renewable energy, and universal and affordable 
service for electric consumers; and H.R. 1960, the Electric 
Power Competition and Consumer Choice Act of 1997. Hearing held 
on October 21, 1997. PRINTED, Serial Number 105-65.
    Electricity Competition.--Hearing held on H.R. 655, the 
Electric Consumers' Power to Choose Act of 1997; H.R. 338, the 
Ratepayer Protection Act; the H.R. 1230, the Consumers Electric 
Power Act of 1997; the H.R. 1359, a bill to amend the Public 
Utility Regulatory Policies Act of 1978 to establish a means to 
support programs for electric energy conservation and energy 
efficiency, renewable energy, and universal and affordable 
service for electric consumers; and H.R. 1960, the Electric 
Power Competition and Consumer Choice Act of 1997. Hearing held 
on October 22, 1997. PRINTED, Serial Number 105-65.
    International Global Climate Change Negotiations.--
Oversight Hearing held on the Status of International Global 
Climate Change Negotiations. Hearing held on November 5, 1997. 
PRINTED, Serial Number 105-67.
    The Department of Energy's Proposed Budget for Fiscal Year 
1999.--Oversight Hearing held on the Department of Energy's 
Proposed Budget for Fiscal Year 1999. Hearing held on February 
5, 1998. PRINTED, Serial Number 105-87.
    The Kyoto Protocol and Its Economic Implications.--
Oversight Hearing on the Kyoto Protocol and Its Economic 
Implications. Hearing held on March 4, 1998. PRINTED, Serial 
Number 105-108.
    Reauthorization of the Nuclear Regulatory Commission.--
Hearing on H.R. 3532, the Nuclear Regulatory Commission 
Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 1999. Hearing held on March 
25, 1998. PRINTED, Serial Number 105-83.
    External Regulation of Department of Energy Nuclear 
Facilities.--Oversight Hearing on the External Regulation of 
Department of Energy Nuclear Facilities. Hearing held on May 
20, 1998. PRINTED, Serial Number 105-117.
    The National Oilheat Research Alliance Act of 1998.--
Hearing on H.R. 3610, the National Oilheat Research Alliance 
Act of 1998. Hearing held on June 16, 1998. PRINTED, Serial 
Number 105-99.
    Electronic Commerce--Part 5.--Oversight Hearing on 
Electronic Commerce: The Energy Industry in the Electronic Age. 
Hearing held on July 15, 1998. PRINTED, Serial Number 105-115.
    The Energy Policy Act Amendments of 1997.--Hearing on H.R. 
2568, the Energy Policy Act Amendments of 1997. Hearing held on 
July 21, 1998. PRINTED, Serial Number 105-109.
    Progress on Uranium Mill Tailings Cleanup.--Oversight 
Hearing on the Progress on Uranium Mill Tailings Cleanup. 
Hearing held on July 27, 1998. PRINTED, Serial Number 105-104.
    The Federal Hydroelectric Relicensing Process.--Oversight 
Hearing on the Federal Hydroelectric Relicensing Process. The 
hearing also focused on S. 439, a bill to provide for Alaska 
State jurisdiction over small hydroelectric projects, to 
address voluntary licensing of hydroelectric projects on fresh 
waters in the State of Hawaii, to provide an exemption for 
portion of a hydroelectric project located in the State of New 
Mexico, and for other purposes. Hearing held on September 25, 
1998. PRINTED, Serial Number 105-138.
    Energy Security: What Will the New Millennium Bring?.--
Oversight Hearing on Energy Security: What Will the New 
Millennium Bring? Hearing held on October 2, 1998. PRINTED, 
Serial Number 105-125.
    The Kyoto Protocol: The Outlook for Buenos Aires and 
Beyond.--Oversight Hearing on the Kyoto Protocol: The Outlook 
for Buenos Aires and Beyond. Hearing held on October 6, 1998. 
PRINTED, Serial Number 105-140.

              Subcommittee on Oversight and Investigations

                              (Ratio: 9-7)

                      JOE BARTON, Texas, Chairman

CHRISTOPHER COX, California          RON KLINK, Pennsylvania
  Vice Chairman                      HENRY A. WAXMAN, California
JAMES C. GREENWOOD, Pennsylvania     PETER DEUTSCH, Florida
MICHAEL D. CRAPO, Idaho              BART STUPAK, Michigan
RICHARD BURR, North Carolina         ELIOT L. ENGEL, New York
BRIAN P. BILBRAY, California         THOMAS C. SAWYER, Ohio
GREG GANSKE, Iowa                    JOHN D. DINGELL, Michigan
TOM COBURN, Oklahoma                   (Ex Officio)
TOM BLILEY, Virginia
  (Ex Officio)

Jurisdiction: Responsibility for oversight of agencies, departments, 
and programs within the jurisdiction of the full committee, and for 
conducting investigations within such jurisdiction.

                              Introduction

    During the 105th Congress, the Subcommittee on Oversight 
and Investigations initiated major inquiries with respect to 
virtually all Federal agencies within the Committee's 
jurisdiction, including the Food and Drug Administration, the 
Department of Health and Human Services, the Environmental 
Protection Agency, the Nuclear Regulatory Commission, the 
Federal Communications Commission, and the Department of 
Energy. These investigations have provided the basis for 
enactment of corrective legislation in the 105th Congress, and 
will provide the foundation for legislative action in the 106th 
Congress. In addition, the Subcommittee's inquiries also have 
resulted in meaningful changes in the Executive Branch's 
implementation and enforcement of current law and the 
establishment of cost-saving measures in the operations of the 
various departments and agencies.
    The Subcommittee on Oversight and Investigations is 
committed to maintaining a vigilant watch in the 105th Congress 
on the expenditure of Federal funds by all of the departments 
and agencies under its jurisdiction. The Subcommittee also 
intends to continue monitoring closely the implementation and 
enforcement of the various laws under the Committee's 
jurisdiction to determine where reforms may be needed to 
eliminate unnecessary or burdensome regulations.

 HEARINGS AND INVESTIGATIVE ACTIVITIES PERTAINING TO THE DEPARTMENT OF 
                                 ENERGY

                                Hearings

      the department of energy's office of science and technology

    On May 7, 1997 the Subcommittee on Oversight and 
Investigations held a hearing to review the management of the 
Department's Office of Science and Technology (OST). OST was 
created by DOE in response to a Congressional directive in 1989 
to begin a program to fund the development of innovative 
environmental technologies. The mission of OST, as defined by 
both Congress and the Department, is to fund the development of 
new technologies that will improve DOE's massive environmental 
restoration and management efforts--by making them cheaper, 
faster, and safer. The Subcommittee initially asked DOE three 
fundamental questions: (1) What technologies have been funded 
by OST?; (2) Which of these have been deployed at DOE sites?; 
and (3) What cost savings have occurred as a result of those 
deployments? Remarkably, DOE was unable to readily provide this 
information because these basic programmatic performance 
measures are not tracked by OST. The hearing revealed that 
after seven years and nearly $3 billion spent by OST, few 
technologies created by OST had actually been used by the 
Department. As a result, the benefits of these new technologies 
have been very limited--to date, DOE has been able to identify 
less than $500 million in cost savings from actual or planned 
use of OST-funded technologies. The Department believes it 
could save up to $20 billion in clean up costs with the use of 
innovative technologies. Without extensive use of OST-funded 
technologies to address some of the most intransigent clean-up 
problems at the DOE sites, the American public will not see an 
adequate return on its $3 billion investment in OST.
    The Subcommittee received testimony from Alvin Alm, 
Assistant Secretary for Environmental Management, Dr. Clyde 
Frank, Deputy Assistant Secretary (DAS) for OST, GAO, and the 
DOE's Environmental Management Advisory Board. Subsequent to 
our review and hearing, the Department initiated changes in OST 
personnel, management, and funding processes including a 
greater emphasis on technology deployments and the application 
of peer review when making funding decisions on new 
technologies. However, a September 1998 GAO report the 
Subcommittee requested subsequent to the hearing identified 
ongoing problems with the OST program including (1) inaccurate 
deployment data, (2) completed technologies which are not 
useful at DOE sites, (3) a lack of user involvement during the 
development process, and (4) infrequent and ineffective 
technical assistance by OST to DOE sites during technology 
selection and implementation decisions. The Subcommittee 
intends to continue its review of the OST program.

         the department of energy's implementation of contract

           reform: problems with the fixed-price contract to

                             clean up pit 9

    On July 28 and 29, 1997 the Subcommittee on Oversight and 
Investigations held a two day hearing on the Department's 
failed fixed-price contract to clean up of buried radioactive 
wastes at the Pit 9 site at the Department's Idaho National 
Environmental and Engineering Laboratory (INEEL) located in 
Idaho Falls, Idaho. In October of 1994 a subsidiary of Lockheed 
Martin was awarded the $179 million fixed-price contract--a 
first-of-its-kind--to retrieve and treat the Pit 9 wastes. This 
new contracting method was intended to speed cleanup and 
demonstrate technologies that could be used elsewhere at the 
INEEL site and across the DOE complex. Three years into the 
contract, Lockheed Martin had incurred $300 million in total 
costs (exceeding the contract's entire value) without 
completing the design and construction of the retrieval and 
treatment facilities. Additionally, at least two years of 
schedule delays had been incurred. In December 1996, Lockheed 
submitted a request to the Department seeking $158 million in 
additional compensation and a conversion of the contract to a 
cost-reimbursable arrangement for any work going forward. 
Subsequent to the hearing this offer was rejected by the 
Department, and Lockheed received a cure notice. All clean up 
work has stopped at Pit 9 and Lockheed has filed a lawsuit 
challenging the cure notice and seeking cost recovery.
    The hearing focused on the circumstances which led to this 
failed contract reform effort. The Subcommittee received 
testimony from Secretary of Energy Federico Pena, the GAO, the 
State of Idaho Division of Environmental Quality, the 
Environmental Protection Agency, and representatives for 
Lockheed Martin. The Department committed to several 
improvements to its privatization contracts including (1) 
addressing Federal staffing needs to provide the skills 
necessary to administer privatization contracts; (2) 
negotiating a clear definition of safety and health regulatory 
requirements into privatization contracts; and (3) emphasizing 
the past performance and experience of the contractor teams it 
procures for privatization efforts. The Subcommittee continues 
to monitor Pit 9 as it reviews the Department's other 
privatization contracts.

    assessing the department of energy's management of the national 
                           laboratory system

    On October 9, 1997, the Subcommittee on Oversight and 
Investigations conducted a hearing to assess the Department of 
Energy's management of its national laboratory system. DOE's 
laboratory system is the largest in the Federal government--it 
consists of 33 laboratories, and 56,000 personnel, and has an 
annual budget of approximately $6.5 billion. Although DOE owns 
the laboratories, the majority of the laboratories are operated 
under contract by universities and not-for-profit 
organizations. The hearing focused on the management concerns 
raised by the Laboratory Operations Board and by DOE's May 1997 
decision to terminate the management contract for Brookhaven 
National Laboratory that was held by Associated Universities 
Incorporated.
    The General Accounting Office, the DOE Inspector General, 
and Dr. Martha A. Krebs, the Director of DOE's Office of Energy 
Research presented testimony. The hearing identified a variety 
of management weaknesses regarding DOE's relationship with the 
laboratories, including: inadequate oversight of its Management 
and Operating (M&O) contracts; inadequate DOE program oversight 
of safety, safeguards, health, intellectual property, and 
construction requirements at DOE laboratory facilities; and 
confusion in the lines of responsibility and accountability 
between DOE headquarters program offices, field offices and the 
laboratories.

     the department of energy's implementation of contract reform: 
                     performance-based contracting

    On October 23, 1997 the Subcommittee on Oversight and 
Investigations held a hearing to review the Department's 
implementation of contract reform focusing on performance-based 
incentive (PBI) contracting. Under this approach, DOE and its 
site contractors negotiate annually various tasks for which the 
contractors will be awarded an incentive fee for completion 
ahead of schedule. Under many PBI contracts, the contractors 
receive little, if any, automatic base fees or ``subjective'' 
award fees, which were DOE's traditional contracting methods. 
The Department, in its rush to implement performance-based 
contracting, ignored basic safeguards to protect the taxpayer's 
money. According to the testimony of Mr. John Layton, the 
Department's Inspector General, DOE initiated performance-based 
contracting without guidance to site operations offices and 
without adequate controls on the establishment of reasonable 
incentive fees due to the lack of adequate cost and schedule 
baselines for the incentivized work. Consequently, PBI 
contracts generally lacked a critical focus and the fees 
associated with them often seemed arbitrary or simply failed to 
incentivize the contractors to perform superior work. For 
example, the Subcommittee examined $910,000 in PBI fees DOE 
paid to Westinghouse Hanford Corporation for incentivized work 
that was never completed.
    The Subcommittee received testimony from Mr. Layton, Ms. 
Elizabeth Moler, Deputy Secretary of Energy; and several of the 
Department's major contractors including Fluor Daniel, Lockheed 
Martin, Kaiser-Hill, Westinghouse, and Bechtel. Since the 
Committee began its review of the PBI program, the Department 
has taken several steps to incorporate lessons learned by 
providing guidance and training to site operation offices, 
initiating an annual review of all PBI contracts at 
headquarters, and ensuring that PBI contracts are negotiated 
and implemented at the beginning of each fiscal year. The 
Subcommittee is continuing its review of the Department's 
efforts as information for fiscal years 1998 and 1999 becomes 
available.

     the department of energy's funding of molten metal technology

    On November 5, 1997, the Subcommittee began a series of 
hearings on the Department of Energy's funding of a technology 
development grant awarded to Molten Metal Technology (Molten 
Metal), a company that in 3 years received a 33-fold contract 
expansion on a non-competitive basis for the development of an 
experimental disposal process for radioactive wastes. The 
Committee's investigation of Molten Metal was an outgrowth of 
the Subcommittee's May 7, 1997 hearing that reviewed the 
Department's management of the Office of Science and Technology 
(OST).
    On November 5, 1997, the Subcommittee received testimony 
from Mr. Thomas Grumbly, former DOE Assistant Secretary for 
Environmental Management, and Mr. Peter Knight, Molten Metal's 
representative who also was a senior official in both the 1992 
and 1996 Clinton/Gore campaigns. The Subcommittee examined the 
public support by Mr. Grumbly and Vice President Gore on Molten 
Metal's behalf, the relationship and communications between Mr. 
Knight, Mr. Grumbly, and Molten Metal, and Mr. Grumbly's 
efforts within the Department on Molten Metal's behalf.
    On November 7 and 21, 1997, the Subcommittee received 
testimony from career DOE employees responsible for the 
Department's funding and contract administration decisions, 
including Mr. Gerald Boyd, Deputy Assistant Secretary (DAS) for 
OST, Dr. Clyde Frank, former DAS for OST, and Mr. William 
Huber, the DOE technical representative on the Molten Metal 
contract. At this hearing, questions were raised about how OST 
made its decisions to fund Molten Metal, the influences of Mr. 
Grumbly, Mr. Knight, and Molten Metal executives on these 
decisions, and the rigor with which OST reviewed the technical 
and commercial feasibility of Molten Metal's technology.
    On February 12, 1998, the Subcommittee received testimony 
from Molten Metal executives, including Mr. William M. Haney, 
III, former Chairman and CEO, and Mr. Victor Gatto, Vice 
President of Government and Nuclear Sector. The Subcommittee 
questioned Molten Metal's relationship with and use of Peter 
Knight, and the timing of Molten Metal's campaign contributions 
to the Clinton/Gore campaign, the Democratic National 
Committee, and to causes affiliated with Vice President Gore, 
which coincided with several DOE expansions of Molten Metal's 
grants.
    This series of hearings, in conjunction with the 
Subcommittee's May 7, 1997 hearing on the management of OST, 
led to internal reforms in the way the Department grants and 
reviews contracts within the Office of Science and Technology 
at DOE.

   management problems with the department of energy's hanford spent 
                          nuclear fuel project

    On May 12, 1998, the Subcommittee on Oversight and 
Investigations held a hearing to review severe cost and 
schedule overruns with the Department's Spent Nuclear Fuel 
project (SNF project) at the Hanford site in Richland, 
Washington. The SNF project, an effort to remove 210,000 spent 
nuclear fuel rods from leaking wet storage basins (K-Basins), 
represents one of the largest health and safety risks within 
the nuclear waste complex. The K-Basins are known to have 
leaked at least 15 million gallons of slightly contaminated 
water, some of which has already reached the Columbia River 
located just 400 yards away. The SNF project has encountered 
more than $600 million in cost overruns and schedule delays 
that have delayed the removal of the deteriorated fuel elements 
by more than four years.
    Weak project management and poor technical performance by 
DOE and its contractors on this project were reviewed. The 
Subcommittee received testimony from Mr. Ernest Moniz, Under 
Secretary of Energy, Mr. John Conway, Chairman of the Defense 
Nuclear Facilities Safety Board, the GAO, the Hanford Advisory 
Board, and each of the Department's SNF project contractors. 
According to GAO testimony, DOE and its initial contractor, 
Westinghouse, and, since 1996, Fluor Daniel and Duke Energy, 
have been unable to provide adequate management and technical 
expertise or develop a sound technical, cost, and schedule 
baseline for the SNF project. These problems contributed to the 
severe cost and schedule overruns.
    Since the hearing, DOE, Fluor Daniel, and Duke Energy have 
restructured the SNF project management systems and have taken 
steps to establish a credible technical, cost, and schedule 
baseline for the project. Although progress is being made, this 
multi-year project is still in the early construction phase. 
The Subcommittee will continue to monitor and evaluate progress 
on the SNF project in the 106th Congress.

  review of the department of energy's hanford radioactive tank waste 
                         privatization contract

    On October 8, 1998 the Subcommittee on Oversight and 
Investigations held a hearing to review the Department's $6.9 
billion privatization contract with British Nuclear Fuels 
Limited (BNFL) to clean up approximately 10 percent of the 54 
million gallons of radioactive wastes stored in 177 underground 
tanks at the Department's Hanford site in Richland, Washington. 
Although the Department has incorporated several of the lessons 
learned from Pit 9 privatization mistakes into this 
privatization contract, an extensive review by the Subcommittee 
and an audit presented at the hearing by the GAO identified 
serious and unresolved questions about this contract and the 
Department's ability to capably manage the effort. Principal 
among these concerns are the enormous financing and profit 
costs of this approach, the financial risks to DOE and the 
taxpayer if this approach fails, and the Department's ability 
to oversee this effort.
    The Subcommittee received testimony from Ernest Moniz, 
Under Secretary of Energy, the GAO, BNFL, and Heart of America 
Northwest, a local environmental organization. According to DOE 
testimony, the Department views this contract as a key example 
of the implementation of contract reform. Successful management 
and oversight by the Department is essential on this project. 
However, the GAO testified that several Federal staffing 
positions on this project remain unfilled.
    The contract was signed in August 1998. However, DOE and 
BNFL will continue to refine the technical and financial 
structure of the contract over a 22-month period, at which 
point a final fixed price will be proposed in August 2000. The 
current target price of $6.9 billion includes $3.2 billion in 
profit and financing costs. The Subcommittee questioned these 
costs in light of the substantial risks to the Government if 
this project fails. If BNFL defaults due to poor performance, 
BNFL is currently liable for up to $300 million in project 
costs. The Department would be responsible for all other costs, 
which could be as high as $3 billion. The Subcommittee also 
requested the Department to assess other financing options, 
including less expensive government financing approaches. The 
Subcommittee will continue to review this contract as critical 
decisions are made over the next two years.

                        Investigative Activities

Misappropriation of Nuclear Waste Grant Funds by the State of Nevada

    The Subcommittee continues to closely monitor DOE's 
stewardship of Nuclear Waste Grant Funds misappropriated by the 
State of Nevada's Nuclear Waste Project Office (NNWPO). A March 
1996 GAO report requested by the Subcommittee determined that 
the NNWPO inappropriately used $735,000 in grant funds and 
violated spending restrictions in applicable appropriations 
acts. Based on these serious findings, the Chairman urged the 
DOE to conduct a complete financial audit of the inappropriate 
expenditures identified by the GAO. In response, DOE contracted 
KPMG Peat Marwick (KPMG) to perform a full audit, finalized 
March 1998, which determined that approximately $200,000 of 
NNWPO's expenditures were for unallowable activities in direct 
violation of spending restrictions, and approximately $493,000 
were found to be unallowable due to insufficient documentation 
to support the payments.
    Following the KPMG audit, the Department reallocated 
$690,000 from an account maintained for the State containing 
unexpended Nuclear Waste Grant Funds. On September 25, 1998, 
the Subcommittee expanded its inquiry with a letter to Governor 
Bob Miller of the State of Nevada requesting documents and 
information detailing expenditures by the NNWPO not reviewed by 
the GAO or KPMG reports, and a description of any corrective 
measures taken by the NNWPO to prevent misappropriation of 
future Nuclear Waste Grant Funds. The Subcommittee will 
continue to closely monitor stewardship of Nuclear Waste Grant 
Funds by DOE and the State of Nevada in the 106th Congress.

 HEARINGS AND INVESTIGATIVE ACTIVITIES PERTAINING TO THE DEPARTMENT OF 
                       HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES

                                Hearings

   continued management concerns at the national institutes of health

    On February 28, 1997, the Subcommittee Chairman requested 
information relating to the circumstances of how a molecular 
biologist, Dr. Mark Hughes, who held a research position at the 
National Institutes of Health (NIH), violated a Federal ban on 
human embryo research and the administrative and oversight 
practices of the NIH with respect to the Dr. Hughes situation.
    On June 19, 1997, the Subcommittee on Oversight and 
Investigations held a hearing on continuing management concerns 
at the National Institutes of Health (NIH). The hearing 
examined the adequacy of NIH management of its personnel and 
resources with respect to Congressional, Presidential, and NIH 
bans of funds for human embryo research. Dr. Harold E. Varmus, 
Director, NIH, presented testimony for the NIH. As a follow-up 
to the hearing, the Subcommittee Chairman sent a letter on June 
24, 1997 to Georgetown University requesting information and 
documents. On July 30, 1997, the Subcommittee Chairman sent a 
letter requesting information about certain matters primarily 
related to the NIH's practices and procedures related to making 
equipment loans.

                    medicare waste, fraud, and abuse

    The Oversight Subcommittee has closely reviewed the Health 
Care Financing Administration's (HCFA) efforts to fight 
Medicare waste, fraud and abuse. The Subcommittee examined 
HCFA's efforts to enhance Medicare's pre-payment detection 
capabilities with Commercial Off-the-Shelf (COTS) software, and 
its efforts to develop an integrated Medicare Transaction 
System (MTS), an automated claims processing system that would 
have consolidated HCFA's eight different automated information 
systems into a single Medicare claims system. With respect to 
MTS, the Committee's efforts disclosed that HCFA had made 
payments of almost $80 million in total with over $50 million 
going to the MTS contractor--more than double the original 
projected cost for the entire contract--with virtually nothing 
to show for it.
    On September, 29 1997, the Subcommittee held a hearing on 
Medicare, Waste, Fraud and Abuse. The Subcommittee heard 
testimony by officials from the General Accounting Office, the 
Office of the Inspector General at the Department of Health and 
Human Services, and from HCFA. The witnesses all testified to 
the enormous amount of waste occurring in the Medicare system, 
as well as to the issues surrounding HCFA's efforts to develop 
the MTS system and the efforts to implement COTS software. With 
respect to the COTS software issue, the Committee brought 
attention to the fact that HCFA's efforts have been far from 
adequate in fighting waste, fraud and abuse on all fronts. 
After resisting for years recommendations by GAO to implement a 
software technology that could potentially save hundreds of 
millions of dollars annually in improper Medicare payments, 
HCFA finally undertook a pilot program to test this technology. 
On May 19, 1998, the Oversight Subcommittee held a hearing on 
the progress of HCFA's efforts to implement commercial software 
into its Medicare claims processing systems. At the hearing, 
the HCFA Administrator, Nancy-Ann Min DeParle testified that 
the pilot program, undertaken for HCFA by HBO&C Company (HBOC), 
had demonstrated that HCFA could save up to $464.5 million 
annually, by using commercially available software to process 
Medicare claims more accurately than HCFA's existing claims 
processing system. In July 1998, HCFA informed the Commerce 
Committee that it had substantially reduced its savings 
estimate from $464.5 million down to $35.9 million. In 
September 1998, HCFA announced it had awarded a $19.2 million 
two-year contract to HBOC for use of its commercially available 
claims processing system.
    In light of these developments, the Committee is continuing 
its oversight of HCFA's use of commercially available software 
for processing Medicare claims, in order to determine the 
validity of HCFA's savings estimates, and in order to evaluate 
the adequacy of HCFA's implementation of the contract with 
HBOC.

                          medicare home health

    On October 29, 1997, the Subcommittee held a hearing on 
Home Health Care fraud. The first panel consisted of 
representatives from HHS OIG, the FBI and the GAO who discussed 
the growth of waste, fraud and abuse in the home health care 
benefit and the challenges HCFA faces in implementing the 
provisions as outlined in the Balanced Budget Amendment (BBA). 
The second panel consisted solely of HCFA representatives, who 
discussed the plans for carrying out actions to control home 
health waste, fraud and abuse and timetables for 
implementation. Finally, the third panel consisted of home 
health industry representatives who provided the industry's 
perspective of the problems and how home health agencies were 
affected by administrative proposals and the BBA.
    Home health has been one of the fastest growing components 
of today's Medicare program. Home health was originated as an 
alternative to more costly and lengthy hospital stays, and has 
been part of Medicare since Medicare's inception in 1965. 
According to GAO, Medicare home health expenditures averaged a 
33 percent per-year growth between 1989 and 1996, or from about 
$2 billion to almost $18 billion. This growth can be attributed 
to the fact that while the number of beneficiaries receiving 
services increased, so did the number of services per 
beneficiary. It is estimated that expenditures for home health 
services will exceed $30 billion by 2002.
    While the number of beneficiaries, home health agencies and 
expenditures has rapidly increased, so have the problems with 
waste, fraud, and abuse associated with the home health 
benefit. In July, the HHS Office of Inspector General, in 
connection with its Operation Restore Trust audits of Medicare 
home health services, released two reports concerning home 
health fraud. In its first report, the OIG reported that nearly 
40 percent of home health care services provided under the 
Medicare program were unjustified because they did not meet 
Medicare reimbursement requirements. In the second report, the 
OIG found that 1 out of every 4 Medicare-certified home health 
agencies were ``problem'' providers and, while not inherently 
fraudulent, had abused Medicare funds. These studies were 
conducted in the 5 most populated States, but the OIG believes 
that these problems exist in other States.
    As part of the Administration's efforts to enforce the 
anti-fraud provisions included in the Balanced Budget Act and 
administrative pronouncements, and in response to the growing 
amount of abuse in the home health industry, President Clinton 
and Secretary Shalala announced on September 15, 1997, an 
unprecedented 6 month moratorium on the entry of any new home 
health agencies into the Medicare program. The Committee later 
uncovered information indicating that the moratorium was not 
developed by the Department of Health and Human Services in 
connection to a broader strategic plan to address home health 
waste, fraud and abuse, but instead, was most likely hastily 
developed in response to a request from the White House.

        medicare waste, fraud, and abuse: a regional perspective

    On March 2, 1998 in the Assembly Hall of the Colleyville 
Community Center, Colleyville, Texas, the Subcommittee on 
Oversight and Investigations held a hearing on Medicare waste, 
fraud and abuse. The purpose of the hearing was to gain a 
regional perspective on the problems that are currently 
plaguing the Medicare system from those who fight Medicare 
waste on a daily basis, as well as to hear concerns from 
representatives of the health care industry.
    The Honorable Nancy-Ann Min DeParle, Administrator, Health 
Care Financing Administration (HCFA), testified on the first 
panel. She provided the Subcommittee with an update on HCFA's 
efforts to combat waste, fraud and abuse. The second panel 
consisted of several individuals from Texas; Mr. Paul Coggins, 
United States Attorney for the Northern District of Texas; Mr. 
Robert E. Richardson, Assistant Inspector General for Criminal 
Investigations, Department of Health and Human Services Office 
of Inspector General, and Mr. Martin Campbell, Assistant 
Regional Inspector General for Investigations in Dallas, all of 
whom are involved in fighting Medicare waste, fraud and abuse 
and testified about specific examples they had located in 
Texas, a large Medicare recipient States. The Subcommittee also 
heard from various industry representatives, including: Mr. 
Donald Chrysler who owns a pharmacy and durable medical 
equipment business in Amarillo; Ms. Claudia Foster, who owns a 
home health agency in Waxahachie; as well as Dr. Bohn Allen 
from the Texas Medical Association who represented a doctor's 
perspective.

  gao's investigative findings of alleged medicare improprieties by a 
                           home health agency

    On June 3, 1997, Chairman Bliley and Mr. Dingell sent a 
joint letter to the General Accounting Office (GAO) requesting 
an investigation of alleged Medicare improprieties by Mid-Delta 
Home Health (now known as Mid-Delta Health Systems, Inc.). 
GAO's Office of Special Investigations specifically examined 
allegations that Mid-Delta (1) routinely requested and received 
leave/bonuses back from its employees while charging Medicare 
their full amount, (2) paid the owner's daughter a full-time 
salary and charged it to Medicare, although she was a full-time 
nursing student, and (3) conducted unnecessary and excessive 
home health care patient visits. On Thursday, March 19, 1998,, 
the Subcommittee on Oversight and Investigations held a hearing 
on Medicare home health. Specifically, the Subcommittee heard 
from the General Accounting Office's (GAO) Office of Special 
Investigations (OSI) regarding its findings of alleged Medicare 
improprieties by home health care provider Mid-Delta Home 
Health (now known as Mid-Delta Health Systems, Inc.) of 
Belzoni, Mississippi, and affiliated companies. The panels 
consisted of representatives of the Government Accounting 
Office (GAO), the Health Care Financing Administration (HCFA), 
the Department of Health and Human Services, and Palmetto 
Government Benefits Administrators, the fiscal intermediary for 
Mid-Delta.
    Some of GAO's more egregious findings included a finding 
that the owner of Mid-Delta home health claimed a salary of 
almost $370,000 in 1996, which included bonuses of about 
$150,000--of which the full amount was reimbursed by Medicare. 
Her husband, also on the Medicare payroll, claimed a salary of 
$178,000, which included $90,000 in bonuses. Their daughter, 
who's full-time nursing tuition was being paid for by Medicare, 
claimed a salary of $55,000 and bonuses of $65,000, which was 
119 percent of her salary. In addition, the owner and her 
husband drove a Mercedes Benz and Lincoln Towncar, both of 
which were charged to Medicare at a cost of $1,700 a month in 
taxpayer dollars.
    After this hearing, Chairmen Bliley and Barton, along with 
Ranking Members Dingell and Klink wrote a letter to the 
Attorney General referring GAO's report, for appropriate 
action.

           department of health and human services inspector

              general's audit of the health care financing

             administration's fy 1997 financial statements

    On April 24, 1998, the Subcommittee on Health and 
Environment and the Subcommittee on Oversight and 
Investigations of the Committee on Commerce, and the 
Subcommittee on Government Management, Information and 
Technology of the Committee on Government Reform and Oversight 
held a joint hearing on the financial management practices at 
the Health Care Financing Administration. Specifically, the 
hearing focused on the findings of the Department of Health and 
Human Services Office of Inspector General's audit of HCFA's 
Fiscal Year 1997 financial statements and related reports on 
internal controls and compliance with laws and regulations, as 
mandated by the Chief Financial Officer's Act of 1990 and the 
Government Management Reform Act of 1994.
    There was one panel of witnesses, which included the 
Honorable June Gibbs Brown, Inspector General, Department of 
Health and Human Services; and the Honorable Nancy-Ann Min 
DeParle, Administrator, Health Care Financing Administration.
    Under the Chief Financial Officers Act of 1990 (CFO Act), 
HCFA is required to prepare financial statements that fully 
disclose its financial position and the results of operation. 
The objective of the CFO Act is to improve systems of 
accounting, financial management, and internal controls 
throughout the Federal government while reducing waste and 
inefficiency and providing the Congress with reliable 
information on the financial status of government agencies. In 
1994, the CFO Act was enhanced by the Government Management 
Reform Act (GMRA) which requires a Department's Office of 
Inspector General to audit the Department-wide financial 
statements for all accounts and associated activities of 
selected Federal agencies.
    The OIG audit review indicated that the Medicare program is 
inherently vulnerable to incorrect provider billing practices. 
Through a detailed medical and audit review of 600 
beneficiaries nationwide with 8,048 fee-for service claims 
processed for payment during FY 1997, the OIG found that 1,907 
of those claims did not comply with Medicare laws and 
regulations. Therefore, the OIG estimated that FY 1997 improper 
payments totaled about $20.3 billion nationwide, or about 11 
percent of total Medicare fee-for-service benefit payments.
    The Subcommittee remains very concerned about such a high 
level of noncompliance within the Medicare program. Addressing 
waste, fraud, and abuse in Medicare will be one of the highest 
priorities of the Subcommittee in the 106th Congress.

medicare billing: savings through implementation of commercial software

    On May 19, 1998, the Subcommittee on Oversight and 
Investigations held a hearing on the Health Care Financing 
Administration's (HCFA) efforts to curb Medicare overpayments 
with commercial claims auditing edits. This hearing was a 
follow-up to the September 29, 1998, and in this hearing the 
Subcommittee focused on HCFA's efforts to implement commercial-
off-the-shelf (COTS) software which it found could save 
Medicare up to $465 million annually by detecting 
inappropriately coded claims. The first panel consisted of The 
Honorable Charles Grassley (R-Iowa), who was a co-requestor on 
the GAO report being released at the hearing. The second panel 
consisted individuals representing the General Accounting 
Office (GAO), the Department of Defense (DOD), and the 
Department of Veterans Affairs (VA). Both DOD and VA have 
implemented the same type of commercial system that HCFA tested 
in Iowa. The third panel consisted of one individual: The 
Honorable Nancy-Ann Min DeParle, Administrator, HCFA.
    In a December 11, 1997 meeting with HCFA representatives, 
Committee staff was informed of HCFA's findings that up to$465 
million could be saved annually if COTS was to be implemented 
nationwide. Committee staff also was informed at that time of 
HCFA's intention to extend the pilot project for an additional 
year. However, Committee staff expressed strong concern about 
this decision to extend the pilot program considering HCFA 
staff had just revealed that up to $465 million could be saved 
annually, while an additional test year would cause undue delay 
in saving millions in taxpayer dollars. Soon after that 
meeting, HCFA Administrator DeParle decided to terminate the 
pilot project and move forward with national implementation.
    At the time of this hearing, HCFA was negotiating with HBOC 
to implement the commercial claims auditing edits. Although 
Members and Committee staff had met with HCFA officials on 
several occasions to discuss the above, it was important to 
have this hearing in order to hear from GAO on its findings and 
to lay out some markers for HCFA to ensure that such commercial 
claims auditing edits were implemented without any further 
unnecessary delays.
    On September 30, 1998, HCFA signed a contract with HBOC to 
apply HBOC's commercial-off-the-shelf software procedure to 
process edits to Medicare claims. The Committee intends to 
closely monitor HCFA's efforts to implement this money saving 
software.

 department of health and human services' policy for federal workplace 
                         drug testing programs

    On April 10, 1997, the Subcommittee Chairman sent a letter 
to the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services 
Administration (SAMHSA) concerning the SAMHSA Scientific 
Meeting on Drug Testing of Alternative Specimens and 
Technologies for April 28-30, 1997. The Subcommittee Chairman 
expressed concerns that the conference be conducted in a 
thoroughly unbiased and science-based manner and that key 
SAMHSA officials may be relying on outdated, flawed or 
statistically invalid experimental studies related to hair 
testing. SAMHSA responded on April 17, 1997 to provide 
assurances to the Subcommittee Chairman about his concerns.
    On February 5, 1998, the Subcommittee Chairman sent a 
letter to SAMHSA examining the fairness and adequacy of 
SAMHSA's consideration of issues related to drug testing. After 
receiving SAMHSA's response, Committee staff met with officials 
from SAMHSA and the National Institute of Drug Abuse (NIDA).
    On July 23, 1998, the Subcommittee on Oversight and 
Investigations held a hearing on the Department of Health and 
Human Services' (HHS) Policy for Federal Workplace Drug-Testing 
Programs. The purpose of the hearing was to determine whether 
HHS has established the most effective drug-testing policy by 
relying exclusively on urine-testing technology and, if not, to 
examine what actions HHS can take to attain the most effective 
drug-testing policy.
    Three panels of witnesses testified: a panel of non-HHS 
witnesses who discussed their views on the HHS drug-testing 
policy and their experiences and views on hair-testing or other 
testing technologies, and a panel of HHS agency witnesses who 
discussed the HHS drug-testing policy. The first panel 
included: (1) Harry Connick, Sr., the District Attorney of New 
Orleans, whose office uses hair-testing to supervise first-time 
non-violent offenders in a diversionary program; (2) Kevin 
Connors of Waste Management Corporation, a Department of 
Transportation regulated company that is required to use urine-
testing but also uses hair-testing; (3) Bruce Goldberger of the 
University of Florida who is designing a proficiency testing 
program for hair-testing in Florida but who believed there were 
external contamination and racial bias problems with hair-
testing; (4) Christine Moore of the U.S. Drug Testing 
Laboratory who believed there were external contamination and 
racial bias problems with hair-testing; (5) Richard Newel, 
Research Associate at the University of South Florida, who has 
been involved in studies that concluded there was no racial 
bias issue with hair-testing; and (6) Carl Selavka, Director of 
the Crime Lab for the Massachusetts State Police, who believed 
there was sufficient scientific support to include hair-testing 
and other alternative testing technologies in the Federal 
workplace drug-testing program.
    The second panel included the following witnesses from HHS 
agencies: Edward Cone of National Institute of Drug Abuse 
(NIDA); Joseph Autry of the Substance Abuse and Mental Health 
Services Administration (SAMHSA); and Bruce Burlington of the 
Food and Drug Administration (FDA). Dr. Cone provided his views 
on alternative testing technologies such as hair-testing. Dr. 
Autry and Dr. Burlington provided status reports on their 
respective agencies' reviews of alternative drug-testing 
technologies.
    The third panel featured Ray Kubacki, President and CEO, 
Psychemedics Corporation, a hair-testing company, and William 
Thistle, Vice President and General Counsel, Psychemedics 
Corporation. These witnesses responded to concerns raised about 
hair testing technology for drugs of abuse.
    The hearing demonstrated that there appeared to be a 
consensus that a complementary program of urinanalysis, hair 
testing, and perhaps blood testing, sweat testing, and saliva 
testing was the optimal approach for a drug-testing program. 
The Subcommittee is monitoring SAMHSA and the FDA as these 
agencies consider scientific issues concerning alternative 
testing technologies to urinalysis.

 implementation of the abstinence education provisions of the welfare 
                               reform law

    On September 25, 1998, the Subcommittee on Oversight and 
Investigations held a hearing to assess the implementation of 
the abstinence education established by Congress as part of the 
Personal Responsibility and Work Opportunity Reconciliation Act 
of 1996, commonly known as the Welfare Reform Act of 1996. The 
purpose of the hearing was to evaluate the adequacy of HHS and 
State efforts to implement the abstinence education program in 
light of concerns about the misinterpretation of the statutory 
requirements of the program at the State and Federal level.
    The Welfare Reform Act of 1996 amended Title V of the 
Social Security Act (42 U.S.C. 701 et seq.)--the Maternal and 
Child Health Services Block Grant--by establishing what is 
commonly referred to as the Title V abstinence education 
program. Title V authorizes the Secretary of Health and Human 
Services to allocate a total of $50 million per year for a 
period of five years, beginning in FY 1998, to the States in 
order to provide abstinence education as defined in Title V. 
Abstinence education is strictly defined in Title V by means of 
an eight-point check list abstinence education program.
    The Subcommittee first heard from Peter van Dyck, who was 
named Acting Director of the Maternal and Child Health Bureau 
shortly before the hearing. Dr. Van Dyck outlined the current 
status of funding and reviewed how the Administration 
interprets the legislation. The Subcommittee then heard 
testimony from State abstinence and health care officials about 
the opposition they are encountering from public health 
officials and local sex educators in enacting a strict 
abstinence until marriage law as the Congress intended. The 
third panel included teenagers who testified that the mixed 
message of Abstinence plus safe sex was far more confusing and 
less effective than the Abstinence only message provided for 
under the Title V programs that Congress enacted. A fourth 
panel of abstinence educators and activists spoke about 
specific examples of programs acting outside the parameters of 
the strict abstinence until marriage definitions.
    The Subcommittee intends to work with the Subcommittee on 
Health and the Environment in the next Congress to examine if 
further legislation is required to enforce the legislative 
intent of the Congress.

  abuses of the medicare partial hospitalization benefit at community 
                         mental health centers.

    On October 5, 1998, the Subcommittee on Oversight and 
Investigations held a hearing that focused on the widespread 
abuse of Medicare's Partial Hospitalization Program (PHP) 
benefits by Community Mental Health Centers (CMHCs). The 
hearing focused on the adequacy of the Health Care Financing 
Administration's (HCFA) efforts to ensure that CMHCs comply 
with statutory and regulatory guidelines for providing partial 
hospitalization services under Medicare in light of 
unexpectedly rapid growth in Medicare partial hospitalization 
payments coupled with evidence of widespread fraud and abuse of 
the PHP program by CMHCs.
    HCFA originally estimated that the annual cost of partial 
hospitalization services in CMHCs would not exceed $15 million. 
However, in the period 1993 to 1997, total Medicare payments to 
CMHCs increased 482 percent from $60 million in 1993 to $349 
million in 1997, and in the same period, average payments per 
patient increased 530 percent from $1,642 to $10,352. The rapid 
growth in Medicare payments prompted HCFA and the HHS Inspector 
General to conduct two reviews of PHP services in Community 
Mental Health Centers. The first review--Reviews of Partial 
Hospitalization Services Provided Through Community Mental 
Health Centers--completed in April 1998, focused on 14 CMHCs in 
Florida and Pennsylvania, found extensive noncompliance and 
resulted in the suspension of Medicare payments to all 14 
providers that were reviewed. The second review--Five-State 
Review of Partial Hospitalization Programs at Community Mental 
Health Centers--was completed in September 1998, and found that 
more than 90 percent of the providers and services reviewed 
were ineligible for Medicare funding--the worst rates of 
noncompliance in Medicare history.
    Testimony was received from the Department of Health and 
Human Services (HHS) Inspector General's Office, and HCFA 
regarding the ineligibility of many providers and beneficiaries 
in the program, the provision of unauthorized services, and the 
failure of HCFA's self-attestation process to screen out 
ineligible Community Mental Health Centers. The hearing also 
highlighted concerns regarding the adequacy of HCFA's proposed 
action plan to prevent further abuse of the Partial 
Hospitalization Program benefits by providers, in particular, 
the Inspector General indicated that HHS needs to conduct an 
evaluation of PHP programs run by hospitals.

                        Investigative Activities

Physicians at Teaching Hospitals (PATH) Audits

    In June of 1996, the Department of Health and Human 
Services Office of the Inspector General (HHS OIG) initiated an 
audit (known as Physician at Teaching Hospitals or PATH audits) 
of the billing practices at the nation's 125 teaching hospitals 
to determine if they were improperly billing Medicare Part B 
for services that were performed only by a resident when a 
teaching physician was not present. Under Medicare Part B, a 
teaching physician is allowed to bill Medicare only if the 
physician is physically present during the administration of 
the medical services. The PATH initiative was launched after a 
December 1995 civil monetary settlement with the University of 
Pennsylvania collected $30 million and a second civil monetary 
settlement in August 1996 brought in $12 million from Thomas 
Jefferson University, both of which were found to have been 
improperly charging Medicare Part B.
    The PATH audits sparked heated resistance from both the 
American Medical Association (AMA) and the Association of 
American Medical Colleges (AAMC), as well as some Members of 
Congress, who called for suspension of the audits. The HHS 
General Counsel undertook a review of the matter and standards 
for billing and issued a letter on July 11, 1997, in which she 
concluded that the standards for reimbursing teaching 
physicians under Part B had not been consistently and clearly 
articulated over the years. Some expressed concern that the 
General Counsel's letter, which was issued and released during 
an ongoing IG audit, may have undermined the IG's efforts by 
re-defining the scope of the criteria for the PATH audit 
initiative. Of the 49 audits that were already underway at the 
time, 16 of the audits were terminated as a direct result of 
the General Counsel's review.
    Regardless of the issues surrounding the clarity of the 
reimbursement criteria, and in particular, the physical 
presence requirement, the Committee was concerned about the 
circumstances surrounding the issuance of the July 11 letter 
during an ongoing OIG audit. However, after personally meeting 
with representatives of the AAMC and AMA in December 1996 and 
January 1997, Secretary Shalala requested the General Counsel 
to address the concerns of the AAMC and AMA audit, which 
culminated in the issuance of the July 11 letter.
    The Committee was very troubled that the HHS General 
Counsel would issue the letter during an ongoing OIG audit 
initiative. Given the OIG's repeated briefings to HCFA in 1995 
and 1996 on its planned PATH audit initiative, and HCFA's 
participation in the project, the Department should have 
informed the OIG before the OIG's audit effort commenced that 
it had a position that was different from the OIG's regarding 
the clarity of the Medicare Part B reimbursement criteria for 
teaching physicians. To issue this letter after the OIG and DOJ 
effort had started, and after the commencement of a substantial 
lobbying effort to stop this initiative, appeared to some to 
constitute inappropriate interference with respect to the OIG's 
work. The General Counsel's actions were alarming not only with 
respect to this specific OIG audit initiative. In response to 
such concerns, Chairman Bliley and Chairman Barton wrote to 
Secretary Shalala on September 16, 1997, about the General 
Counsel's July 11 letter requesting an explanation. Chairman 
Bliley and Chairman Barton requested a number of documents 
pertaining to the circumstances and facts that provided the 
basis for the July 11 letter.
    Additionally, Committee staff had several meetings with 
representatives from HHS OIG and HHS General Counsel's office, 
as well as the AAMC to discuss their respective involvements 
with the PATH initiative, as well as the genesis of the July 
11, 1997 letter. As a result of the Committee's oversight 
efforts, the Department and the HHS OIG have made a concerted 
effort to ensure that a similar situation will not arise in the 
future.

Physician Comparability Pay

    On March 3, 1997, the Subcommittee Chairman sent a letter 
concerning the manner in which the U.S. Department of Health 
and Human Services (HHS) has implemented the provision at 
Section 529 of the Treasury, Postal Service and General 
Government Appropriations Act of 1991, Public Law 101-509 
(Appropriations Act), which affects the pay received by 
physicians throughout the Department, whether employed at FDA, 
NIH or elsewhere. The Appropriations Act amended 5 U.S.C. 5371 
to authorize the director of the Office of Personnel Management 
(OPM) to permit agencies, such as the Department, to pay 
physicians who have significant ``direct patient-care'' 
responsibilities at pay levels comparable to those of 
clinicians at the Department of Veterans Affairs (DVA). Prior 
to Section 529, clinicians at DVA tended to earn significantly 
more than those practicing medicine at other Federal agencies. 
OPM implemented that section of the Appropriations Act and, as 
a result, the Department is in the process of offering higher 
paying slots to certain of its career clinicians.
    The Committee was concerned about reports that certain 
individuals who have been offered this so-called ``Title 38 
pay'' may not have substantial or significant ``direct patient-
care'' responsibilities, contrary to Congress' express purpose 
in enacting Section 529 and to the language of that section.

CDC Implementation of CLIA Waiver

    On July 9, 1997, the Subcommittee Chairman sent a letter 
requesting information concerning the Centers for Disease 
Control and Prevention's denial of waived status to a bladder 
tumor antigen stat test and for general information on the 
waiver process and whether CDC has fairly and consistently 
implemented the waiver provision of the Clinical Laboratory 
Improvement Amendments of 1988 (CLIA). On August 12, 1997, the 
Director of the CDC provided the information.

Results Act: Biomedical Research in HHS Fiscal Year 1999 Performance 
        Plan

    On January 6, 1998, the Subcommittee Chairman asked the 
General Accounting Office to examine how HHS' FY 1999 annual 
performance plan addressed medical research. On September 11, 
1998, the GAO issued its report. The GAO found that the HHS 
agencies did not always identify measurable outcomes that would 
allow an assessment of their research accomplishments. 
Generally, the agencies did not explicitly identify their 
strategies for accomplishing their specific research goals. 
However, the performance indicators included in the plan as a 
means of assessing progress toward achieving their goals 
provided some insight as to what those strategies might be. As 
the process of strategic planning, annual goal setting, and 
performance reporting proceeds under the Results Act, we expect 
HHS' performance plan to become more specific about what the 
department intends to accomplish and how the various HHS 
agencies will achieve their intended research goals.

False Claims Act

    On March 19, 1998, Congressmen Bill McCollum (Crime 
Subcommittee Chairman for the House Judiciary Committee) and 
Congressman William Delahunt introduced the ``Health Care 
Claims Guidance Act,'' H.R. 3523. This legislation was 
introduced in response to hospital's concerns that the 
Department of Justice was overzealous in its use of the False 
Claims Act in its health-related law enforcement activities, 
which included the use of ``demand'' letters that were often 
unduly harsh in tone and substance, and the pursuit of 
seemingly trivial cases that did not warrant the Departments' 
involvement.
    The Committee held a business meeting to discuss the matter 
with representatives from the Department of Justice and the HHS 
OIG. After the meeting, Chairmen Bliley, Barton and Bilirakis, 
along with Ranking Members Dingell, Klink and Brown, wrote to 
the Department of Justice suggesting that numerous changes be 
made to address concerns regarding the Department's use of the 
False Claims Act. The letter stated that the proposed 
legislation could severely undermine the fight against waste, 
fraud and abuse in the health care industry--by weakening a 
very powerful tool in the False Claims Act--but urged the 
Department to implement corrective administrative action to 
address enforcement related problems. With the strong efforts 
of this Committee, the Department of Justice, on June 3, 1998, 
issued written guidance on what would be the appropriate use of 
the False Claims Act in health related national projects. The 
Committee will continue to monitor the implementation of this 
written guidance.

Allegations of Improper Use of Federal Research and Development Grant 
        Funds

    On May 1, 1998, the Full Committee Chairman requested that 
the GAO investigate allegations of improper use of Federal 
research and development grant funds by the University of 
California. The GAO's Office of Special Investigations is 
investigating this matter.

Adequacy of HHS Oversight in Safeguarding Against the Diversion of 
        Grant Funds

    On May 6, 1998, the Full Committee Chairman sent a letter 
to NIH requesting information and documents concerning 
allegations that raised questions about HHS capability to 
investigate NIH grant fraud. The NIH provided documents and 
information. Committee staff conducted interviews and continues 
to review the matter.

Allegations of Mismanagement in the National Cancer Institute

    On August 28, 1998, the National Institutes of Health (NIH) 
forwarded a report prepared by the NIH Office of Management 
Assessment to the Subcommittee Chairman in response to his 
letters of July 30 and November 25, 1997 on this matter. It was 
alleged that a National Cancer Institute (NCI) contractor was 
serving as the de facto head of NCI's Division of Basic 
Sciences. It was further alleged that the Contractor, the 
Principal Investigator for the Advanced Biosciences 
Laboratories contract with NCI, was strengthening the position 
and budget of the ABL contract while serving as ``a resource to 
the NCI Director,'' under a modification to the contract.
    The OMA's review concluded: (1) there were instances where 
the record indicated that the Contractor's activities extended 
beyond the advisory role that would have been appropriate under 
48 CFR Subpart 37.2 by performing inherently governmental work 
of a policy, decision-making, or managerial nature, which is 
the responsibility of agency officials; (2) there is no 
evidence indicating the Contractor or ABL received financial 
benefits beyond those specified in ABL's basic research program 
contract with NCI as a result of his serving as a ``resource to 
the Director, NCI''; and (3) despite the advice and opinions of 
NCI's Deputy Ethics Counselor and the Chief, Research Contracts 
Branch, and the NIH Legal Advisor, Office of the General 
Counsel, it was not until the January 1998 contract letter and 
the February 1998 modification that controls were included in 
the basic research program contract to ensure compliance with 
the provisions of 48 CFR 37.203(c)

State Children's Health Insurance Program (S-CHIP)

    The Balanced Budget Act of 1997 (Public Law 105-33)--signed 
into law on August 5, 1997, and amended by technical amendments 
(The District of Columbia Appropriations Act of 1998, Public 
Law 105-100) on November 19, 1997--includes provisions 
establishing the State Children's Health Insurance Program (S-
CHIP) under a new Title XXI of the Social Security Act. This 
new State-Federal partnership was developed to expand health 
insurance coverage of low-income children by providing States 
with greater operational flexibility and additional Federal 
matching funds. The legislation also contained a provision 
barring any funding for abortions under the S-CHIP program.
    On July 22, 1998, the Committee wrote to Secretary Shalala 
to express its concerns that the prohibition on funding 
abortions encompassed within the S-CHIP language was being 
circumvented by some States and to request certain information. 
On August 17, 1998, Secretary Shalala responded with a 
collection of internal HHS documents relating to the 
implementation of the S-CHIP ban on abortion funding.

 HEARINGS AND INVESTIGATIVE ACTIVITIES PERTAINING TO THE DEPARTMENT OF 
                                COMMERCE

                        Investigative Activities

Inquiry into the Activities of the Minority Business Development Agency 
        (MBDA).

    In the 105th Congress, the Committee continued to review 
Department of Commerce Management issues. The Committee 
followed up on an inquiry that it had commenced in the 104th 
Congress concerning the award by the Department's Minority 
Business Development Agency (MBDA) of a $3.2 million 
cooperative agreement in 1994 to the Cordoba Corporation, whose 
owner had political and fundraising ties to the Clinton-Gore 
campaign, to operate a large-scale minority business center in 
Los Angeles (the L.A. MEGA Center). Cordoba had finished a 
distant second in the original competitive solicitation but 
nonetheless was processed for the award. During this 
processing, it was determined that Cordoba's bid was non-
responsive and rather than selecting the top-ranked bidder, the 
Department canceled the solicitation and issued a revised 
solicitation, which Cordoba won. During the processing for this 
award, the Department's Inspector General raised substantial 
concerns about the financial viability and questionable 
business integrity of Cordoba. Nevertheless, MBDA awarded the 
grant to Cordoba. After receiving several poor ratings from 
MBDA's regional office, MBDA did not renew the grant and the 
MEGA center was closed in 1995.
    The IG issued an audit report in February 1997 on the MBDA 
grant with Cordoba to run the L.A. MEGA Center, concluding that 
Cordoba owed the government $222,756. After reviewing MBDA's 
response to the audit report's findings and recommendations, 
the Committee wrote to express strong concerns about MBDA's 
response and urged the Department to accept all of the IG's 
findings and implement all of the report's recommendations. 
According to the Department, on February 13, 1998, the 
Departmental Audit Resolution Determination of the Cordoba 
Corporation award determined that Cordoba owed the Federal 
government $50,400. After Cordoba appealed this determination, 
the Department revised the debt to $19,407. Cordoba has entered 
into a repayment plan and has paid $5,000 thus far.
    The Committee also wrote to the Department in June 1997 to 
express concerns about an upcoming Department-funded trade 
mission to Honduras. The trip was being organized by a MBDA 
grantee. According to the mission itinerary obtained by the 
Committee, the mode of transportation to Honduras included a 
three-day cruise aboard a luxury liner. The itinerary indicated 
only one day of scheduled business in Honduras. In addition, it 
appeared that MBDA was subsidizing a significant portion of the 
mission costs for its private sector participants. After 
receiving the Committee's letter, the Department canceled the 
trip and indicated that the mission was to be ``rescheduled and 
redesigned.''

Advanced Technology Program

    The Committee also began a review of the Department's 
Advanced Technology Program (ATP), which is administered by the 
National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST). The 
Omnibus Trade and Competitiveness Act of 1988 (Public Law 100-
418, codified at 15 U.S.C. 278n) established the ATP for the 
purpose of funding new high-risk, pre-competitive technologies 
that are not being adequately developed by private capital 
markets. On July 2, 1997, the Commerce Committee Chairman, 
along with the Chairman of the Senate Government Affairs'' 
Subcommittee on Government Management, Restructuring and the 
District of Columbia requested GAO to conduct a detailed review 
of the ATP. GAO released the report, titled Federal Research 
Challenges to Implementing the Advanced Technology Program 
(GAO/RCED/OCE-98-83R), in March of 1998. While noting that 
``the program's recently revised regulations appear to be more 
closely ties to addressing the underlying economics of market 
failure than they have been in the past . . . Significant 
challenges remain in connection with NIST's ability to identify 
the projects in which market failure has occurred.''
    In July of 1997, the Commerce Department issued a report, 
Strengthening the Commerce Department's Advanced Technology 
Program: An Action Plan in response to the Committee's 
investigation. This plan outlined several proposed changes to 
the operation and policies of ATP including encouraging State 
participation, placing greater emphasis on joint ventures and 
consortia, increasing the cost-share ratio of Fortune 500 
corporations.
    The Committee again wrote to Secretary Daley to request 
information and documents relating to the Department's 
implementation of the program. The Committee intends to 
continue to review this program in the 106th Congress.

United States Trade Representative

    In August 1998, the Committee began an inquiry into certain 
aspects of the 1996 U.S.-Japan Insurance Agreement. 
Specifically, the Committee was informed that the United States 
Trade Representative had entered into a secret ``private 
minute'' with respect to the Agreement. This minute was not 
signed, dated nor initially publicly disclosed. The USTR argued 
that this was a practice frequently used during negotiations. 
The Committee's inquiry seeks to determine the manner in which 
this private minute was developed and agreed to and the 
appropriateness of entering into such an agreement. The 
Committee is reviewing documents and interviewing individuals 
involved in the matter. The Committee intends to continue this 
review in the 106th Congress.

 HEARINGS AND INVESTIGATIVE ACTIVITIES PERTAINING TO THE DEPARTMENT OF 
                                 STATE

                        Investigative Activities

Satellite Privatization

    On March 31, 1998, the Chairman wrote to the Secretary of 
State to inquire about the Administration's views on whether 
legislative authorization is necessary in order for the U.S. 
government to agree to and implement Inmarsat's plan for 
privatization. The Chairman also requested the Administration's 
assessment of whether the restructuring of INTELSAT raises any 
questions of consistency with U.S. law. While the Department of 
State did send a letter replying to the Chairman's letter on 
April 16, 1998, it failed to produce the requested analyses. 
During May 1998, the Committee initiated an inquiry into the 
Department of State's failure to provide the requested 
analyses. During the course of this investigation, the Chairman 
wrote to the Secretary of State, the Attorney General, Chairman 
of the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) and Secretary of 
Commerce, requesting documents related to the Department of 
State's analyses of the two questions posed in his original 
letter of March 31, 1998. The Chairman also sent a document 
request to Edwin I. Colodny, Chairman, Comsat Corporation 
(Comsat). Comsat is a government-established private 
corporation which serves as the U.S. signatory to the Inmarsat 
and INTELSAT agreements.
    Because the Department of State declined to produce all the 
responsive documents during its initial response on July 1, 
1998, the Chairman issued a Subpoena Duces Tecum to the 
Secretary of State on July 14, 1998, to compel production of 
the documents in question. The Department of State complied, 
producing the documents on July 21, 1998. Document requests 
related to this investigation which were made to entities other 
than the Department of State received timely responses.
    The Committee's inquiry into the Department of State's 
initial failure to provide the requested analyses also included 
interviews with officials from the FCC and Departments of State 
and Commerce. Information gained through these interviews and a 
review of the documents provided indicates that Department of 
State lawyers viewed implementing legislation as a likely 
prerequisite to U.S. acceptance of the Inmarsat privatization 
plan. A review of the Inmarsat-related records produced clearly 
demonstrates that Department of State lawyers identified the 
probable need for implementing legislation as early as May 
1997. However, despite this view, the Department of State 
failed to make any legislative proposals in a practicable time 
period. Moreover, on August 28, 1998, the Department of 
Justice's Office of Legal Counsel submitted a legal opinion to 
the Department of State concluding that implementing 
legislation is necessary in order for the U.S. Government to 
agree to and implement the Inmarsat plan for privatization. 
Finally, records show that the Department of State was 
considering non-legislative alternatives as late as the fall of 
1998.
    The Department of State's failure to ensure that any 
Inmarsat privatization plan be supported domestically by the 
required duly-enacted statutory authority may threaten U.S. 
leadership in international telecommunications policy. Because 
Inmarsat currently is scheduled to begin privatization in April 
1999, and no corresponding legislation was passed during the 
105th Congress, the Committee remains concerned regarding this 
matter and will continue its investigative inquiry in the hope 
of ensuring that the United States will have enacted the proper 
statutory authority if and when Inmarsat privatization does 
occur.

 HEARINGS AND INVESTIGATIVE ACTIVITIES PERTAINING TO THE ENVIRONMENTAL 
                           PROTECTION AGENCY

                                Hearings

 review of epa's proposed ozone and particulate matter naaqs revisions 
 (apr. 10, 1997, apr. 17, 1997, may 1, 1997, may 8, 1997, and may 15, 
  1997) and implementation of the clean air act national ambient air 
 quality standards (naaqs) revisions for ozone and particulate matter 
                           (october 10, 1997)

    On December 13, 1996, EPA proposed revisions to the 
national ambient air quality standards (``NAAQS'') for ozone 
and particulate matter. The Subcommittee on Health and 
Environment and the Subcommittee on Oversight and 
Investigations held five joint hearings on EPA's proposed 
revisions, and one joint hearing on the final revised NAAQS 
that EPA issued on July 18, 1997. These joint hearings explored 
uncertainties in the scientific bases for EPA's revisions and 
identified significant concerns that had been raised by the 
Department of Energy, Department of Commerce, and other Federal 
agencies. The Subcommittees also heard State and local elected 
officials express concern regarding EPA's proposed 
implementation scheme for the revised standards.
    The Subcommittees' first hearing, on April 10, 1997, 
focused on the scientific bases for the proposed revisions. The 
Subcommittees received testimony from a scientific expert panel 
consisting of the current and four former chairmen of the Clean 
Air Scientific Advisory Committee established under the 1990 
amendments to the Clean Air Act. These scientists testified 
that, in many cases, the scientific assumptions used by EPA 
were subject to uncertainty and that the new standards relied 
primarily on epidemiological associations from a limited number 
of studies using data that had not been released for review by 
other scientists. The Committee demanded that EPA release the 
data. As a result of the Committee's efforts, an independent 
scientific review panel is now reviewing these key studies. The 
results of that analysis will be used in EPA's next scheduled 
5-year review of the revised standards.
    On April 17, 1997, the Subcommittees held a joint hearing 
on Development of the Regulatory Impact Analysis for EPA's 
Proposed Revisions. The Subcommittees received testimony from 
Sally Katzen, Administrator, Office of Information and 
Regulatory Affairs, Office of Management and Budget (OMB), and 
from Mary D. Nichols, Assistant Administrator for Air and 
Radiation, EPA. These officials testified regarding serious 
questions raised by OMB, the Departments of Energy and 
Commerce, and other Federal agencies during the internal 
regulatory review of EPA's proposed revisions.
    On May 1, 1997, the Subcommittees held a joint hearing on 
Perspectives of State and Local Elected Officials. The 
Subcommittees received testimony from an expert panel of State 
and local elected officials on impacts associated with EPA's 
proposed standards and questions as to the legal authority for 
EPA's proposed implementation scheme. On May 8, 1997, the 
Subcommittees held a hearing and received testimony from an 
expert panel regarding the Health Effects of Ozone and 
Particulate Matter. On May 15, 1997, the Subcommittees held a 
joint hearing to receive testimony from EPA Administrator Carol 
M. Browner regarding the proposed revisions and certain adverse 
views expressed by other Federal agencies.
    On July 18, 1997, EPA published the final revisions to the 
NAAQS for ozone and particulate matter. Accompanying those 
final rules was a July 16, 1997, Memorandum from the President 
to the Administrator of the EPA regarding Implementation of 
Revised Air Quality Standards for Ozone and Particulate Matter. 
Based largely on issues raised during the five joint 
Subcommittee hearings, the Memorandum outlined an alternative, 
less burdensome approach for implementation of the revised 
standards.
    On October 1, 1997, the Subcommittees held a joint hearing 
on Implementation of the Clean Air Act NAAQS Revisions for 
Ozone and Particulate Matter. The Subcommittees received 
testimony from EPA Administrator Carol M. Browner on EPA's 
legal authority for the alternative implementation scheme. The 
Subcommittees also received testimony on implementation from an 
expert panel of State and local officials and representatives 
of small businesses subject to the revised standards. Because 
the legal authority for EPA's alternative implementation scheme 
remained uncertain, Congress resolved the ambiguity by 
incorporating certain elements of the alternative 
implementation scheme in the Transportation Equity Act for the 
21st Century, Public Law 105-178, discussed elsewhere in this 
report.

the federal-state relationship: a look into epa regulatory reinvention 
                                efforts

    On November 4, 1997, the Subcommittee on Oversight and 
Investigations held a hearing looking into EPA's regulatory 
reinvention efforts. This hearing examined EPA's efforts to 
work with the States in developing programs aimed at providing 
States and industry with flexible and alternative approaches to 
achieve optimum environmental protection in the face of limited 
resources. EPA acknowledged, in a 1997 GAO report, that 
resolving future environmental challenges would require a 
fundamentally different approach than used in previous years. 
The Agency called this new approach ``regulatory reinvention.''
    The hearing examined EPA's regulatory reinvention efforts, 
including the Common Sense Initiative (CSI), Excellence in 
Leadership Program (Project XL), and an agreement negotiated 
between EPA and the Environmental Council of States (ECOS) 
which was aimed at ``establishing a clear pathway and decision 
making process for State innovations that ha[d] encountered 
Federal barriers.'' The CSI program, considered the cornerstone 
of EPA's regulatory reinvention efforts, has the goal of 
finding cleaner, cheaper, smarter ways of reducing or 
preventing pollution and recommending changes in the existing 
approach to environmental management on a sector-wide approach. 
Project XL, on the other hand, was designed to engage 
industries on a company-by-company basis to try to reach an 
agreement which would achieve better environmental compliance 
while providing the companies more flexibility in their 
environmental compliance activities.
    Testimony was received from representatives of the 
Administration, Government Accounting Office (GAO) and State 
environmental officials. EPA testimony was supportive of the 
goal of cleaner, cheaper and smarter approaches to 
environmental protection, but testimony from some State 
witnesses suggested that the Agency's practices were 
obstructing States from implementing programs which would have 
resulted in significant pollution reductions.

       the federal-state relationship: environmental self audits

    On March 17, 1998, the Subcommittee held a second hearing 
on the Federal-State relationship. The hearing examined EPA's 
response to State environmental audit programs, focusing on the 
following four primary issues: (1) whether environmental audits 
promote better environmental compliance; (2) the extent to 
which State and Federal audit programs encourage better audit 
practices; (3) the effect EPA practices have had on self audit 
programs and how States and the Federal government should work 
together to encourage self audits; and (4) whether State audit 
programs lack the minimum statutory and regulatory required 
criteria necessary for delegated authority of environmental 
programs. Testimony was heard from representatives of the EPA, 
State officials, academia and the regulated community.
    Environmental audit reports are usually comprehensive self-
evaluations containing not only the underlying data indicating 
whether or not there was an environmental violation, but also 
confidential internal company discussions (legal analysis, 
opinions, suggested corrective actions, etc.) pertaining to the 
findings of the audit and how best to address them. Because of 
the candid nature of the assessments contained in the audit 
reports, regulated interests expressed concerns that these 
reports could be used by EPA to bring civil actions, determine 
intent in criminal suits, or be used by outside groups 
unfairly. The regulated community felt that since they were 
voluntarily disclosing this information, they should be 
afforded some protection.
    Currently, more than 22 States have enacted their own self-
audit laws, but EPA has warned some States that their 
delegation to run Federal environmental programs may be 
threatened because of these laws. EPA proposed its own Federal 
audit policy which would offer penalty mitigation at the 
discretion of the agency and an assurance that the Agency would 
not ``routinely request audit reports.''
    Critics of the State self-audit legislation argued that the 
immunity and privilege provisions of State audit legislation 
prevents States from properly enforcing Federal environmental 
statutes and shields bad actors. Meanwhile, the regulated 
community contended that the discretion and uncertainty of the 
Federal policy made it insufficient to encourage self audits.
    Witness testimony revealed instances where companies that 
had utilized State self-audit laws had received lengthy and 
burdensome requests for information from EPA, at least implying 
that EPA was considering ``over-filing'' on them.

        states' alternative environmental compliance strategies

    On June 23, 1998, the Subcommittee on Oversight and 
investigations held a third hearing examining the Federal-State 
relationship. This hearing focused on a General Accounting 
Office report entitled Environmental Protection: EPA's and 
States' Efforts to Focus State Enforcement Programs on Results 
(RCED-98-113), which was requested by the Committee and 
released at the hearing. The GAO report analyzed the success of 
States and the Agency to evaluate the effectiveness of State 
environmental enforcement programs based on outcome-oriented 
results, e.g. actual environmental improvements, instead of the 
traditional measures of enforcement actions taken and fines 
assessed. Testimony was heard from representatives of EPA, GAO 
and State officials.
    In the report, GAO highlighted two major areas of concern. 
First, EPA needs to deliver a more consistent message to the 
States regarding alternative compliance strategies. GAO noted 
that ``inconsistencies most frequently identified [by State 
environmental officials] were between EPA headquarters and 
regional offices; among the EPA's headquarters offices with key 
enforcement responsibilities; and between EPA management and 
lower-level staff.'' These inconsistencies made it difficult 
for States to pursue alternative compliance programs 
effectively. Second, the report cited the need for EPA to work 
with States to develop new alternative compliance program 
measures.
    States experimenting with alternative compliance strategies 
often find they must divert significant resources away from 
traditional enforcement efforts in order to implement and 
assess the new programs. Meanwhile, because these new programs 
emphasize compliance over enforcement, their effect may lead to 
a cleaner environment, but a drop in traditional enforcement 
numbers leaves the experimenting State open to criticism from 
both EPA and the media. GAO recommended that EPA work with the 
States to overcome some of the technical barriers associated 
with developing new methods for measuring the effectiveness of 
alternative compliance programs.

  the environmental protection agency's title vi interim guidance and 
                      alternative state approaches

    In February 1998, EPA issued the Interim Guidance for 
Investigating Title VI Administrative Complaints (``Interim 
Guidance'') setting out how the Agency will decide 
``environmental justice'' claims filed against State 
environmental departments. These environmental justice claims 
allege that a specific State environmental permitting action 
discriminated against minority groups. Many State government 
organizations such as the National Governors' Association, the 
U.S. Conference of Mayors, and the Environmental Council of the 
States complained that EPA should have consulted with States, 
local governments, and other stakeholder on this important 
issue and that the Interim Guidance will hurt urban 
revitalization and the cleanup of contaminated ``brownfields.''
    Committee staff met with EPA staff on three separate 
occasions, first on October 1, 1997, and then again on February 
18 and April 27 of 1998, to discuss EPA's environmental justice 
policy, and more specifically the development of the Interim 
Guidance.
    On August 6, 1998, the Subcommittee on oversight and 
Investigations held a hearing on EPA's interim guidance at 
which EPA heard the States' concerns and committed to work with 
States in a review of the interim guidance. EPA officials 
acknowledged in testimony, ``were we to start this process all 
over again, . . . we would clearly recognize stakeholder input 
earlier in the process . . .''.
    Concerned that the interests of States and municipalities 
were not being adequately addressed on such an important policy 
matter, Chairman Bliley sent a letter to the EPA on October 26, 
1998, suggesting the only method of policy development which 
would provide the level of participation and transparency 
necessary to address the valid concerns of States and 
stakeholders would be the use of the all inclusive, 
participatory measures afforded by notice and comment 
rulemaking under the Administrative Procedure Act.

                        Investigative Activities

Drycleaners and Perchloroethylene

    In the 104th Congress, the Subcommittee on Oversight and 
Investigations held a hearing on the problems facing the dry-
cleaning industry in complying with environmental regulations, 
specifically the costs of cleanup efforts associated with the 
use of perchloroethylene (PERC), the primary solvent used in 
dry-cleaning processes. One of the main issued raised in the 
hearing was the lack of a cleanup standard for PERC in soils 
and the inappropriate application of a more stringent non-risk-
based Safe Drinking Water Act standard.
    In response to this problem, Chairman Barton introduced 
H.R. 1711, the Small Business Remediation Act of 1997, in the 
House on May 22, 1997. H.R. 1711 requires the maximum level of 
remediation of dry cleaning solvents (including PERC) in soil, 
surface water, groundwater, and other environmental media that 
a Federal, State, local agency, or court may require of a 
person engaged in dry cleaning, or of the owner of land or a 
facility in which such a person is conducting dry cleaning, to 
be one-tenth the equivalent exposure of the workplace standard 
for such solvents established by the Secretary of Labor under 
the Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970.
    On October 1, 1998, Chairman Barton and Committee staff met 
with EPA officials and representatives of the dry-cleaning 
industry to discuss the issue in more detail and find out what 
progress the Agency has made in establishing a risk-based 
cleanup standard for PERC in soils. The Subcommittee will 
continue to follow EPA's efforts and plans to meet with Agency 
officials again next session to discuss the status of the 
Agency's PERC studies.

Ethylene Oxide Thermal Oxidizers

    In July 1997, the Subcommittee initiated an inquiry into 
EPA's mandate of the use of ``thermal oxidizers'' by commercial 
ethylene oxide sterilization and fumigation facilities to treat 
and destroy the toxic gas. The final rule mandating the use of 
thermal oxidizers by commercial ethylene oxide sterilization 
and fumigation facilities was promulgated by EPA on December 6, 
1994 (40 C.F.R. Parts 9 and 16) and, according to a June 18, 
1997 EPA Federal Register notice, approximately 114 companies 
were required to install these thermal oxidizers by December 6, 
1997 (62 Fed. Reg. 33068).
    On August 7, 1997, Chairman Bliley sent a letter to EPA 
expressing concern over four separate explosions in plants 
using the EPA-mandated thermal oxidizers, and the Agency's slow 
response in suspending the thermal oxidizer mandate. In the 
letter, the Chairman requested that EPA take all necessary 
steps to ensure the preservation of all documents related to 
this issue so that they would be available in the event that 
subsequent Committee review may be necessary.
    Also in August 1997, Committee staff was briefed by EPA 
staff regarding explosions that had occurred at four separate 
facilities utilizing the ethylene thermal oxidizers. On August 
7, 1997, Chairman Bliley sent a follow-up letter to EPA 
expressing concern over the explosions in plants using the EPA 
mandated thermal oxidizers, and the Agency's slow response in 
suspending the thermal oxidizer mandate. In the letter, the 
Chairman requested that take all necessary steps to ensure the 
preservation of all documents related to this issue so that 
they would be available in the likelihood that subsequent 
Committee review may be necessary.

Regional Structure and the State/Federal Relationship

    In October 1997, the Committee initiated an inquiry 
regarding the Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA's) long-
standing regional structure. On October 24, 1997, the Chairman 
sent a letter of inquiry and document request to the 
Administrator of the EPA to learn whether the Agency's regional 
structure is serving to promote superior levels of 
environmental protection in an era when the States increasingly 
are responsible for day-to-day environmental protection. The 
Committee was concerned that the EPA's decentralized regional 
structure may not be the most efficient and effective method 
for the EPA to interact with the States, since it is EPA's ten 
regional offices which deal directly with the States, and 
operate with varying degrees of autonomy and flexibility in 
implementing Federal law.
    On December 15, 1997, Fred Hansen, Deputy Administrator, 
EPA, responded to the Chairman's letter, providing 
approximately 35,000 pages of documents to help explain the 
EPA's present organizational structure and the underlying 
rationale behind that structure. Deputy Administrator Hansen 
stated that providing the EPA's regions with increased 
flexibility to respond to the needs of individual States 
required fundamental reinvention of how EPA performs many of 
its most basic functions. The Committee continues to review the 
regional structure and will continue to monitor this issue in 
the 106th Congress.
    In early 1998, highly questionable spending practices in 
EPA's Region V Office came to the attention of this Committee. 
Specifically, the Committee learned that, in the last few weeks 
of fiscal year 1997, Region V employees spent $1.6 million in 
Superfund enforcement dollars on computer, audio-visual, and 
other electronics equipment. EPA employees called it the ``FY97 
Superfund Enforcement Dollars Spending Spree! Christmas In 
September.'' This amount represented more than one quarter of 
the Region's total Superfund enforcement budget. The Committee 
calculated that at least 14 cleanups, protecting the health of 
the nation's children, could have been undertaken had this 
money been appropriately allocated. This kind of waste of 
taxpayer dollars has been and will remain a primary focus of 
the Committee's oversight activities in the 106th Congress.
    During April of 1998, the Committee initiated in inquiry 
into the EPA's State Voluntary Cleanup Program as part of its 
more general inquiry into the EPA's regional structure. Under 
this program, the EPA empowered its Regions to negotiate 
Voluntary Cleanup Program Memoranda of Understanding (MOA) with 
individual States. These agreements provide parties engaged in 
the cleanup of certain hazardous substance-contaminated sites a 
limited immunity from future Federal enforcement action, which 
in turn encourages the parties to incur the risk of cleaning up 
these contaminated sites. On May 12, 1998, the Chairman sent a 
document request to the Administrator of the EPA to learn about 
recent changes in the EPA's policy regarding this program. The 
Committee was concerned because the EPA proposed, and then 
withdrew, its ``Final Draft Guidance for Developing Memoranda 
of Agreement Concerning State Voluntary Cleanup Programs.'' The 
Committee was interested in learning how, in the absence of 
this guidance, EPA and its Regions were negotiating with 
individual States on the establishment of Voluntary Cleanup 
Program MOAs, and how implementation issues were being handled 
by the Agency.
    Timothy Fields, Jr., Acting Assistant Administrator for the 
Office of Solid Waste and Emergency Response, EPA, responded to 
the Chairman's document request on June 22, 1998. The EPA 
provided Headquarters and Regional documents in response to the 
request. Committee staff have reviewed the documents and the 
Committee will continue to monitor developments in this area.
    As part of its more general inquiry into the EPA's regional 
structure, the Committee held hearings on November 11, 1997, 
March 17, 1998, June 23, 1998 and August 6, 1998. These 
hearings have been addressed in another section of this report.

The Environmental Protection Agency--Mercury Exposure Standards

    On March 23, 1998, the Chairman of the Commerce Committee 
and Congressman Tom Coburn sent letter to Donna Shalala, the 
Secretary of the Department of Health and Human Services and to 
William Daley, the Secretary of the Department of Commerce to 
request information regarding interagency activity with regard 
to two studies conducted by the Environmental Protection Agency 
(EPA): (1) a mercury study released on December 19, 1997, 
pursuant to section 112(n)(1)(B) of the Clean Air Act, as 
amended in 1990 (CAAA); and (2) a study of emissions from 
Electric Utility Steam Generating Units pursuant to 
112(n)(1)(A) of the CAAA. In the letters the Committee raised 
concerns about the inadequacy of the scientific basis of EPA's 
Mercury Report to Congress. In particular, the Committee 
expressed concern about the need for EPA to take into account 
recent studies being conducted in the Faroes and the Seychelle 
Islands in order to have an accurate scientific basis to 
determine whether to regulate Electric Utility Steam Generating 
Units for mercury and other hazardous air pollutants.
    On August 24, 1998, the Office of Science and Technology 
Policy (OSTP) announced an interagency workshop on ``Scientific 
Issues Relevant to Assessment of Health Effects from Exposure 
to Methylmercury'', scheduled for November 18, 1998. On 
December 7, 1998, EPA representatives briefed committee staff 
about the interagency workshop and about the Agency's efforts 
to monitor mercury emissions from electric steam generating 
units. The Committee is continuing its inquiry to ensure that 
EPA's determination whether to regulate Electric Utility Steam 
Generating Units is made on the basis of sound science, and in 
compliance with the Clean Air Act amendments of 1990, which 
also stipulate that the National Institute of Environmental 
Health Sciences has the responsibility to determine the 
threshold level of mercury exposure below which adverse human 
health effects are not expected to occur.

Sector Facility Indexing Project

    In April 1998, the Committee initiated an inquiry into the 
Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA's) Sector Facility 
Indexing Project (SFIP), an EPA initiative to makes a variety 
of data about individual facilities within five industrial 
sectors available to the public via the Internet. The 
industrial sectors addressed are automobile assembly, pulp 
manufacturing, petroleum refining, iron and steel production, 
and the primary smelting and refining of nonferrous metals. In 
response to the Committee's inquiry, EPA officials briefed 
Committee staff on the program. On April 29, 1998, the Chairman 
sent a letter to the Administrator of the EPA requesting 
information about the source of the data, whether the data was 
altered or standardized to accommodate data integration, and 
whether the comments of facilities reporting the data were 
incorporated in supplementary material explaining the 
significance of specific data. On May 20, 1998, Steve Herman 
Assistant Administrator for the Office of Enforcement and 
Compliance Assistance responded to the Chairman's letter. On 
May 22, 1998, EPA officials briefed Committee staff and other 
House of Representative's staff on the project. The Committee 
intends to continue monitoring the program as it develops in 
the 106th Congress.

EPA Placing Disaster Data on the Internet

    On May 5, 1998, the Committee initiated an inquiry into 
matters concerning the Environmental Protection Agency's 
planned management of industrial facility information collected 
under a provision of the Clean Air Act (CAA) when Subcommittee 
staff was briefed by EPA officials on the matter.
    The Clean Air Act Section 112(r), 42 U.S.C. Sec. 7412(r), 
required EPA to implement a program focused on the prevention 
of chemical accidents. To meet this obligation, EPA published 
its final ``Risk Management Program'' rule on June 20, 1996. 61 
Fed. Reg. 21688. Among other things, that rule will require 
approximately 66,000 facilities nationwide to send EPA a ``Risk 
Management Plan'' (RMP) containing detailed identification of 
potential accidental chemical release points and an estimate of 
the damage and injuries that could result from an absolute 
worst-case scenario data, otherwise known as offsite 
consequence analysis (OCA) data. It is undisputed that the 
information contained in each facility's RMP would make it 
easier to design a terrorist attack against that or a similar 
facility and to maximize the impact of such an attack. At the 
May 5 meeting, EPA staff confirmed that it was the Agency's 
preference to make all information collected in the RMPs 
available on the Internet.
    On August 7, 1998, Committee staff met with industry 
representatives and security consultants to collect additional 
information and further discuss the potential threats posed by 
publishing certain sensitive portions of the data collected in 
the RMPs on the Internet. Committee staff met with EPA 
officials for a second time on September 10, 1998, to ascertain 
the status of the Agency's proposal to publish all information 
collected in the RMP on the Internet. At this briefing, EPA 
officials mentioned a number of alternatives which involved 
using ``speed bumps'' or other electronic security measures to 
control access to the data. On September 15, 1998, Committee 
staff met with FBI officials to discuss the extent to which the 
Bureau was consulted and included in the development of EPA's 
proposal for Internet publication of the RMP data.
    On September 17, 1998, the Chairman of the full Committee 
wrote to Director Freeh of the FBI asking for the Bureau's 
assessment of the risks presented if EPA were to proceed with 
its plans to place this sensitive information on the Internet. 
In its response dated October 9, 1998, the FBI stated that 
``[p]ublishing of the Offsite Consequence Analysis (OCA) data 
of the Risk Management Plans (RMP) on the Internet would 
provide a targeting tool for a person planning a terrorist or 
criminal act,'' and went on to note the FBI had determined the 
inclusion of ``speed bumps'' to be ``an ineffective means of 
protecting the information.'' The FBI response outlined the 
following three alternatives to Internet distribution: (1) 
Internet publication of the RMPs, minus OCA data; (2) all RMP 
data available to State and local officials through a closed 
computer system; and (3) a compact disk (CD) of RMP data, less 
any contact or identifying information, made available to 
researchers and environmental organizations. Additionally, the 
October 9 FBI response highlighted the fact that 
``environmental groups have stated they will acquire the 
information and disseminate [it] over their web sites if EPA 
does not provide the information in its entirety over the 
Internet.''
    Meanwhile, Committee staff worked with Appropriations 
Committee staff to insert language into the Fiscal Year 1999 
VA-HUD Appropriations bill, Public Law 105-276: (1) urging that 
EPA continue to work on this issue in close consultation with 
the FBI; (2) requiring that FBI submit to Congress no later 
than December 1, 1998, a written report containing the Bureau's 
recommendations for appropriate methods of public 
dissemination; and (3) directing EPA to provide Congress with 
monthly updates of its progress in working with the FBI and 
other Federal agencies to develop appropriate RMP protocol 
guidelines.
    On October 26, 1998, Chairman Bliley sent a letter to EPA 
inquiring about the Agency's plans for handling the information 
under its Risk Management Program in light of concerns 
expressed by FBI in its letter to the Chairman. On November 20, 
1998, EPA produced to the Committee certain records in response 
to Chairman's Bliley's October 26, 1998 letter. Subcommittee 
staff is in the process of reviewing these documents and the 
matter remains an open inquiry.

Maximum Achievable Control Technology Standard for Hazardous Waste 
        Combustors

    In the 105th Congress, the Subcommittee on Oversight and 
Investigations continued its review of EPA's implementation of 
the Clean Air Act Amendments, focusing on the regulation of 
Hazardous Air Pollutants (HAPs) under Title III. Title III of 
the Clean Air Act amendments of 1990 substantially rewrote and 
expanded existing law governing the regulation of HAPs by 
establishing a new standard based on ``Maximum Achievable 
Control Technology'' (MACT). On June 19, 1998, Representatives 
Barton, Dingell, Klink and Gillmor sent a letter to EPA 
regarding the Clean Air Act MACT rulemaking for hazardous waste 
combustors (HWCs). In their June 19 letter, the Representatives 
expressed concern that EPA's proposal of the HWC MACT standard 
may not be based on existing technology in uses in the 
industry, and thus not achievable as required by the 1990 Clean 
Air Act Amendments. The June 19 letter was followed up with 
several telephone conversations between Committee and EPA staff 
as well as a meeting between Committee staff and EPA Office of 
Solid Waste staff on August 14, 1998.
    EPA produced the requested information and documents in a 
September 11, 1998 response. In its response, EPA noted that 
certain technologies--particulate matter continuous emission 
monitors (PM CEMs)--were not ``being used in practice on 
boilers and industrial furnaces, including cement kilns, in the 
United States.'' The Agency's response also included a copy of 
EPA's regulatory impact analysis (RIA) for the HWC MACT 
proposal.
    This remains an open inquiry with the Committee staff 
reviewing the documents and determining what additional 
Committee action may be necessary.

    HEARINGS AND INVESTIGATIVE ACTIVITIES PERTAINING TO THE FEDERAL 
                       COMMUNICATIONS COMMISSION

                                Hearings

 the circumstances surrounding the federal communications commission's 
                   planned relocation to the portals

    In late 1997, the Subcommittee on Oversight and 
Investigations began to investigate the circumstances 
surrounding the Federal Communication Commission's planned 
relocation to the Portals building. The initial investigation 
was based on allegations of political favoritism in return for 
campaign contributions to various Democratic political groups, 
as well as concern that Franklin L. Haney, a partner in the 
Portals building, had paid Peter Knight, one of his 
representatives, an unlawful $1 million contingency fee to 
assist in obtaining a Federal lease for the Portals building. 
The investigation was later expanded to review Portals-related 
fee arrangements between Mr. Haney and James Sasser, a former 
U.S. Senator and current U.S. Ambassador to the People's 
Republic of China, and between Mr. Haney and John Wagster, 
another of Mr. Haney's representatives. They were paid $1 
million and $500,000 by Mr. Haney, respectively.
    The Committee requested and reviewed documents from the 
Federal Communications Commission (FCC) and the General 
Services Administration (GSA), which had signed the lease for 
the Federal government, and various other parties. The 
Committee also interviewed numerous government officials 
involved in the project. Because Mr. Haney, his various 
corporate entities, and his private representatives refused to 
provide documents voluntarily, the Committee issued subpoenas 
duces tecum for those materials, and held Mr. Haney in contempt 
of Congress on June 24, 1998, for his failure to comply with 
those subpoenas. Mr. Haney subsequently provided all responsive 
documents.
    As part of its investigation, the Subcommittee on Oversight 
and Investigation held a series of hearings, on August 4, 
August 7, September 10, September 15, September 17, October 6, 
and October 9, 1998. The Members of the Subcommittee questioned 
Mr. Haney, Mr. Knight, Mr. Sasser, and Mr. Wagster about their 
involvement in the Portals project and their fee arrangements. 
The Subcommittee also questioned other participants in the 
financing and leasing of the Portals building, as well as 
members of Mr. Knight's law firm, about their knowledge of or 
involvement in the project and the $1 million payment to Mr. 
Knight. Finally, the Subcommittee concluded the series of 
hearings with representatives of the FCC and GSA who were 
involved in the lease negotiations and the decision to move to 
the Portals. The witnesses included the former chairman of the 
FCC, Reed Hundt, as well as Mr. Robert Peck, who worked at both 
the FCC and GSA during the time in question.
    Based on the evidence gathered by the Committee, Mr. Bliley 
and Mr. Barton directed Committee staff to prepare a report, 
entitled Report on the Portals Investigation and Related 
Matters: Evidence Warranting Further Action by Federal Law 
Enforcement Authorities, which was referred to the Department 
of Justice in December 1998 for appropriate action.

                        Investigative Activities

DEMS (Digital Electronic Message Service)

    On March 14, 1997, the Federal Communications Commission 
(FCC) summarily issued an order in which it reallocated 400 MHz 
in the 24 GHz band for so-called digital electronic message 
service (DEMS). The same order also summarily modified the 18 
GHz DEMS licenses to provide each licensee with four times as 
much spectrum in the 24 GHz band as provided for in the 18 GHz 
band. The frequencies that were allocated by the FCC and 
assigned to the current DEMS licensees consisted of spectrum 
that the National Telecommunications and Information 
Administration (NTIA) had made available for non-government 
users. Moreover, this significant rulemaking was conducted 
without any opportunity for public comment, under a claim of 
national security. The Committee wrote to the FCC to express 
its concern and to request further information. After receiving 
the requested documents, Committee staff reviewed them and 
conducted numerous interviews. Then on July 28, 1998, Chairman 
Bliley wrote FCC Chairman William Kennard, questioning the 
propriety of such an order and expressing the Committee's 
concerns over the re-allocation of a valuable resource like 
spectrum in such a manner without the benefit of input from any 
interested public parties as well as the fact that they by-
passed normal operating procedure without any apparent reason 
other than an ambiguous claim of national security concerns. 
The Committee's review focused particularly on whether the 
Commission handled the DEMS matter with the transparency that 
law and public policy require and the Commission's apparent 
attempt to manufacture a national security rationale in order 
to justify bypassing traditional notice and comment rulemaking. 
The Committee was also very concerned by the lack of 
accountability of the Commission's personnel with respect to 
this important procedural decision. The Congress recognizes 
that an agency's judgment can be only as good as the 
information upon which it draws, and the specified notice and 
comment procedures are there to ensure that the broadest base 
of information is provided to an agency by those most 
interested and best informed on the issue.

BellSouth's Application for Entry into the Long Distance Market

    The Committee examined whether BellSouth engaged in 
inappropriate behavior with regard to its application before 
the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) for in-region long 
distance entry, as it relates to its challenge to the FCC's 
order relocating the DEMS. The Committee was concerned that 
BellSouth was not acting in good faith in its dealings with 
DEMS licensees, specifically Teligent. A Wall Street Journal 
article reported that BellSouth ``offered to drop a legal 
challenge to Teligent Corp.'s FCC licenses if the start-up 
local phone company would support its long distance 
application.'' BellSouth's attempt to garner misleading support 
for its application through persuasion and threatened legal 
action was a cause of serious concern for the Committee. The 
Committee reviewed internal BellSouth documents that supported 
at least the appearance of impropriety. In letters to BellSouth 
and the FCC, the Committee related its concerns about both 
BellSouth's actions and the in-region application process as a 
whole. The Committee further expressed its fear that other 
companies could either offer an incentive or threaten a 
negative consequence to other companies in order to get those 
companies to support their application to the FCC.

The Federal Communications Commission's Implementation of the Universal 
        Service portion of the Telecommunications Act of 1996

    Since November 1997, the Committee has been investigating 
the Federal Communications Commission's (FCC) implementation of 
the schools and libraries provision (Section 254) of the 
Communications Act regarding universal service. What began as a 
simple inquiry to determine whether telephone rates would 
increase as a result of the FCC's decisions quickly led to an 
investigation of the propriety of communications between and 
among the FCC, the Administration (and in particular, the 
Office of the Vice President) and long distance companies. 
After extensive review of the documents submitted to the 
Committee and interviews with representatives of the FCC, 
Administration, and long distance companies, the Committee 
remains concerned that the FCC may have inappropriately 
pressured and threatened long distance companies not to recover 
the cost of the schools and libraries program from residential 
consumers for at least six months. The Committee intends to 
closely monitor the implementation of this program in the 106th 
Congress.
    Section 396(e)(1) of the Communications Act of 1934 
prohibits CPB from compensating its officers or employees at an 
annual rate of basic pay for Level 1 of the Executive Schedule. 
Section 396(k)(9) prohibits the Corporation for Public 
Broadcasting (CPB) from distributing public funds to the Public 
Broadcasting Service (PBS) and National Public Radio (NPR) 
unless assurances are provided to CPB that PBS and NPR are 
compensating their officers and employees at an annual rate of 
pay that does not exceed the rate of pay for Level 1 of the 
Executive Schedule. Based on a press report, the Committee 
became concerned that in recent years PBS and NPR may have 
distributed compensation that exceeded the salary cap. 
Specifically, the news report indicated that PBS paid the 
following bonuses to certain PBS officers: $28,950; $30,700; 
$32,410; $25,910; and $23,945. The Committee was concerned that 
these large bonuses were an effort to circumvent the Section 
396 salary cap and also had concerns about the size of these 
bonuses.
    The Committee wrote to CPB, NPR, and PBS to express its 
concerns and to request information relating to the payment of 
compensation. CPB, PBS, and NPR assured the Committee in 
writing that they were in compliance with the statutory 
provisions regarding the salary caps. In its response, CPB 
stated that the payment of ``bonuses are not prohibited by the 
Act, so long as they are unexpected, unusual or extraordinary, 
even if they otherwise exceed the Section 396 salary caps. CPB 
assured the Committee that it was satisfied that PBS and NPR 
had complied with the relevant statutory provisions on payments 
to officers.
    Notably, in its response to the Committee's request for 
information, PBS disclosed that in 1996 six officers or 
employees had received total compensation (including base 
salary, bonuses or other supplemental pay) that exceeded the 
salary cap. In fact, those six officers all received bonuses of 
more than $23,000, with the PBS President and CEO receiving a 
bonus of $45,000. PBS also disclosed that, in 1997, four PBS 
officers received total compensation that exceeded the salary 
cap, with the PBS President and CEO receiving a $37,000 bonus. 
It should be noted that from 1990 to 1996, PBS did not have any 
instances in which an officer received total compensation in 
excess of the salary cap. From 1979 through 1989, there were a 
total of only six instances in which an officer received total 
compensation in excess on the salary cap. (One officer in 1982, 
1983, 1989 and 1990; two officers in 1986). Despite the 
substantial increase in the number of people whose total 
compensation exceeded the salary cap, PBS assured the Committee 
that it was not attempting to circumvent the salary cap and 
that these bonuses were for exceptionally meritorious 
performance. PBS also informed the Committee that it did not 
expect to have any instances in 1998 in which PBS employees or 
officer's total compensation exceeded the salary cap.
    Section 701 of Title VII of section 101(g) of Division A of 
the Omnibus Consolidated and Emergency Supplemental 
Appropriations Act, 1999, amended section 396(k)(9) of the 
Communications Act of 1934. The amended provision requires CPB 
to ensure that NPR and PBS provide assurances that no officer 
or employee of these organizations will be compensated in 
excess of reasonable compensation as determined pursuant to 
provisions of the Internal Revenue Code.
    The Committee also looked into allegations by the former 
CPB Inspector General (IG) that he had been improperly 
dismissed by the CPB Board of Directors. Committee staff met 
with the former IG and with members of the CPB Board, including 
Chair Diane Blair, to discuss the former IG's allegations. The 
Board explained the reasons for the dismissal of the IG. In the 
course of reviewing these allegations and learning of the 
interactions between the CPB Board and the former IG, who is 
hired and subject to removal by the CPB Board, the Committee 
became concerned that the Board and IG had not developed a 
working plan to ensure the institutional independence of the 
CPB. The CPB Board agreed to address this situation and take 
measures to ensure that the IG has the necessary independence 
to discharge the IG's responsibilities.

 hearings and investigative activities pertaining to the food and drug 
                             administration

                                Hearings

                  fda policy on home drug testing kits

    On January 24, 1997, the Subcommittee Chairman requested 
information and documents on the FDA's approval of the first 
over-the-counter drug testing system.
    On February 6, 1997, the Subcommittee on Oversight and 
Investigations held a hearing about FDA's newly announced 
proposed policy on home collection testing systems for drugs of 
abuse. The Subcommittee received testimony from the FDA's 
Deputy Commissioner for Policy. Under the new policy, the FDA 
would allow some urine-based home collection testing systems 
for drugs of abuse to be sold to parents without a doctor's 
prescription. This was a partial reversal of FDA's position at 
the Subcommittee's oversight hearing on September 26, 1996, 
when the Agency maintained that the marketing to parents of 
urine cups and hair envelopes for drug testing purposes 
required a premarket application. By this requirement, the FDA 
insisted that such common items needed to be regulated as 
sternly as pacemakers or heart valves that are implanted in the 
human body. That position was based on FDA's concerns about 
such societal and ethical factors as ``family discord'' in 
assessing parents' ability to handle the results of a drug 
test. In July 1998, the FDA issued a final rule based on the 
policy announced at the February 6, 1997 hearing.
    As a follow-up to the hearing, on April 10, 1997, the 
Subcommittee Chairman sent a letter to the Secretary of the 
Department of Health and Human Services concerning the 
testimony of FDA's Deputy Commissioner/Senior Advisor.

  adequacy of access to investigative drugs for seriously ill patients

    On July 22, 1997, the Full Committee Chairman sent a letter 
concerning the adequacy of FDA's mechanisms (i.e., 
compassionate use investigative new drug permits , and 
treatment investigative new drug permits) for facilitating 
patient access to unapproved therapies. In August 1997, the FDA 
provided documents and information.
    On September 23, 1997, the Subcommittee on Oversight and 
Investigations held a hearing on the adequacy of access to 
investigative drugs for seriously ill patients. The hearing 
examined the concerns of patients with cancer or other life-
threatening diseases about their ability to obtain clearance 
from the Food and Drug Administration for access to 
experimental treatments. The witnesses included: Ed Gochenour, 
David Smith, and Frances Langham, cancer or non-Hodgkins 
lymphoma patients who discussed issues arising out of their 
personal experiences concerning compassionate use access to 
antineoplastons; Kay Smith, wife of David Smith, who discussed 
the impact of the access situation on her and highlight how 
such situations impact the families of the patients. Susan 
Spenceley, a Hodgkin's disease patient who experienced problems 
maintaining access to radioimmunology therapy (RIT); Mark 
Cohen, a husband of a Hodgkin's disease patient who described 
the difficult experience of getting access to radioimmunology 
therapy (RIT); Richard Jaffe, Esq., an attorney who has worked 
closely with both Burzynski patients and RIT patients 
summarized and generalized on his experiences and observations 
on patient access issues; Shelbie Oppenheimer, a Lou Gehrig's 
disease patient discussed access issues related to Myotrophin; 
Diane Evans, a Chronic Fatigue Immune Dysfunction Syndrome 
(CFIDS) patient witness discussed her experience in getting 
access to Ampligen; Marsha Wallace, M.D., a physician who 
treats CFIDS patients, commented on parameters on clinical 
trials for Ampligen and how it has affected access for her 
patients.
    The Subcommittee invited the FDA to testify at this hearing 
and obtained privacy waivers from the patient witnesses to 
enable FDA to respond fully. The Department of Health and Human 
Services commended the Subcommittee for seeking waivers from 
patients and sponsors, but decided not to permit the FDA to 
testify at this open hearing because of remaining 
confidentiality concerns due to the fact that the companies 
involved had not cleared privacy waivers. In October 1998, the 
FDA briefed the Subcommittee in closed session.

         food and drug administration (fda) management concerns

    Beginning April 30, 1997, the Subcommittee Chairman sent 10 
letters to FDA seeking information and documents about certain 
matters primarily related to the information management and 
procurement systems at the FDA's Center for Biologics 
Evaluation and Research (CBER) as well as the management of the 
FDA. The FDA provided the requested materials. The Committee 
staff reviewed the documents, conducted interviews, and 
produced a preliminary draft report of its findings.
    On April 1, 1998, the Subcommittee on Oversight and 
Investigations will held a hearing on management issues and 
procurement and inventory control procedures at the Food and 
Drug Administration (FDA), especially those at the FDA's Center 
for Biologics Evaluation and Research, and about the pace and 
directions of corrective actions taken or to be taken.
    Two panels of witnesses testified. The first panel 
included: David Schaub, a Committee staff detailee from the 
GPO's Office of Inspector General and Certified Fraud Examiner, 
who presented a preliminary staff assessment on the above 
issues; Roberty Stumphy, an FDA employee who disclosed 
information about perceived efficiencies and violations of 
procedures; and Robert Gramling of the General Accounting 
Office, who identified what Federal policy establishes internal 
controls for Federal Managers and why they are needed, and what 
can happen if an agency lacks those controls. The FDA panel was 
headed by Dr. Michael A. Friedman, M.D., Lead Deputy 
Commissioner of the FDA.
    Dr. Friedman testified that the FDA had recognized most of 
the identified problems and had corrected or was in the process 
of correcting the problems.
    The hearing demonstrated that FDA had inadequate internal 
controls over FDA employee use of government credit cards, 
inadequate internal controls over receiving some equipment, 
inadequate internal controls over some inventory items, 
insufficient documentation of lost or stolen equipment, weak 
controls over disposal of some equipment, and inaccurate 
procurement records in some areas. The FDA employee witness 
testified that the Subcommittee's investigation played a 
critical role in ensuring certain corrective actions undertaken 
by FDA.
    As a result of the hearing, the Subcommittee Chairman 
requested the GAO to study FDA's accountability of property, 
plant, and equipment, and the Committee staff wrote a report on 
FDA management concerns.

 imported drugs: u.s.-eu (european union) mutual recognition agreement 
                          on drug inspections

    On October 2, 1998, the Subcommittee on Oversight and 
Investigations held a hearing on the U.S.-EU mutual recognition 
agreement on drug inspections (MRA), referred to as the annex 
on pharmaceutical good manufacturing practices. The purpose of 
the hearing was to examine why pharmaceuticals were included in 
the umbrella agreement, what effect the MRA will have on 
protecting the health of the American consumer, and any 
additional unresolved issues.
    The one panel of witnesses included lead negotiators from 
the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative, the Commerce 
Department, and the FDA. These officials discussed: (1) the 
history of the umbrella trade agreement, (2) the current status 
of the pharmaceutical MRA, (3) the unresolved issues, and (4) 
what cost and drain on FDA resources will result from attempts 
to implement the pharmaceutical MRA. The witnesses defended the 
MRA as being in the best interest of the United States, arguing 
that the MRA could save FDA resources, enhance trade, and 
eliminate duplicative regulation.
    However, the hearing demonstrated that there were many 
unanswered concerns such as: the short-term increase of 
resources needed, the questionable long-term savings for FDA, 
whether FDA was pressured to lower drug safety and quality 
standards, whether the agreement will be unworkable because of 
many unresolved questions, that the EU's technical trade 
barrier has not been eliminated, and the further loss of 
pharmaceutical manufacturing in the United States. As a result, 
on October 9, 1998, the Subcommittee Chairman and the Ranking 
Member requested that the General Accounting Office: (1) 
produce a projection of FDA costs incurred as a result of the 
MRA and identify all the assumptions (including direct benefits 
to FDA) required to make the cost projections; (2) identify 
other costs (trade shifts, e.g.) and benefits (good will, e.g.) 
that would not show up in FDA resource calculations; and (3) 
identify all the unresolved issues of the Pharmaceutical GMP 
sector at the time of its signing and determine the agreed plan 
of action of both the United States and the EU for resolving 
those issues over the three-year transition period.

                        Investigative Activities

FDA Integrity Issues Raised by the Visx, Inc. Document Disclosure

    During 1997 and 1998, the Subcommittee Chairman sent a 
series of information and document request letters to the FDA 
and certain other individuals or entities concerning 
allegations that an FDA employee or employees gave 
confidential, proprietary information of a pending premarket 
application to a competing company. Specifically, the Chairman 
of Summit Technology received in the mail, at his private 
residence, a package of internal FDA material relating to the 
premarket application of Visx, Inc. The FDA and then the FBI 
investigated the matter in 1996 and 1997.
    In connection with this investigation, on October 16, 1997, 
the Subcommittee Chairman requested, and received on November 
12, 1997 materials relating to the Working Group on 
``Safeguarding Confidential Information.''

Department of Justice--Conduct of U.S. Attorney's Office in FDA-Related 
        Probe

    On September 7, 1995, the Subcommittee Chairman requested 
the Attorney General to initiate an internal Department of 
Justice investigation into allegations of prosecutorial abuse 
related to the Food and Drug Administration and grand jury 
investigations of Dr. Stanislaw Burzynski and the Burzynski 
Research Institute. This request was a follow-up to information 
and documentation stemming from testimony received at the July 
25, 1995 hearing. On June 23, 1997, the Department of Justice 
informed the Subcommittee Chairman that the Department had 
completed an investigation into these concerns and concluded 
that none of the Department attorneys or Assistant U.S. 
Attorneys involved engaged in professional misconduct in this 
matter.

Allegations of FDA Abuses of Authority: Myo-tronics

    On December 5, 1995, the Subcommittee Chairman directed the 
FDA to refer allegations made by Myo-tronics, Inc., a dental 
device manufacturing company, to the Office of Inspector 
General (OIG) for investigation. In October 1994, an FDA dental 
advisory panel reviewed several pre-Amendment products 
manufactured and marketed by Myo-tronics, Inc. for the purpose 
of recommending a classification for these devices. The Panel 
recommended the devices be classified as Class III or 
experimental devices. Serious concerns were raised by Myo-
tronics, Inc. about the FDA's treatment of the company, with 
Myo-tronics' management ultimately alleging that the Panel had 
been biased against them. The FDA Office of Internal Affairs 
formally referred the matter to the OIG on December 26, 1995.
    The OIG issued its findings in two reports in 1996 and 
1997. Regarding the OIG's findings about the conflict of 
interest allegations against the Advisory Panel Chairman, the 
FDA ethics officer concluded that the Chairman did not violate 
the criminal Conflict of Interest statute, but that there was 
an appearance of a conflict because he failed to provide the 
FDA with information concerning his company's financial 
interest in a competitor to Myo-tronics and concerning two 
lawsuits in which his company was involved. The OIG also found 
that the FDA did not take into account the evidence the firm 
offered in support of certain pre-Amendments labeling claims. 
The OIG also found evidence supporting the conclusion that 
certain FDA employees had acted inappropriately.
    On September 16, 1997, the Subcommittee Chairman sent a 
letter requesting FDA's conclusions about the Myo-tronics 
matter, and specifically, what the agency considered to be 
misconduct or inappropriate actions by FDA employees in the 
Myo-tronics matter.
    In response to the OIG report, the FDA took disciplinary 
action against FDA employees, accepted the resignation or non-
renewal of certain advisory panelists, undertook a formal 
review of its advisory panel meeting procedures, conducted an 
independent review of the Myo-tronics labeling claims, and 
reconvened the advisory panel to reexamine the issue of dental 
muscle monitor classification.

Expert Systems

    On November 12, 1996, the Subcommittee Chairman requested 
documents and information regarding FDA proposals to regulate 
software that helps physicians diagnose ailments, sometimes 
called ``expert systems.'' The FDA provided the information and 
documents on January 9, 1997.

Management of the Office of the Commissioner

    On January 3, 1997, January 31, 1997, and February 13, 
1997, the Subcommittee Chairman sent letters requesting 
documents related to the management of the Office of the 
Commissioner. These requests sought a list of all employees and 
budget for the Office of Commissioner and any reorganizations; 
how the different Deputy Commissioner positions were created 
and line of succession. The FDA provided the documents in 
installments during February and March 1997.

Foreign Drug Inspections

    On February 25, 1997, as part of an investigation of FDA's 
foreign inspection program, the Subcommittee Chairman requested 
information concerning reports that a foreign drug manufacturer 
may have submitted fraudulent information to the FDA about bulk 
drug ingredients imported to the United States.
    On May 22, 1997, the Subcommittee Chairman requested 
information from a cross-section of pharmaceutical companies 
about pharmaceutical bulk manufacturing plants in mainland 
China. The companies responded and provided the information.
    On March 17, 1998, the GAO issued its report, Food and Drug 
Administration: Improvements Needed in the Foreign Drug 
Inspection Program in response to the Subcommittee Chairman's 
request to examine FDA's efforts to correct problems in the 
foreign drug inspection program identified in earlier FDA 
evaluations. The GAO reported that the FDA conducts few routine 
pharmaceutical inspections overseas, inspectors frequently fail 
to file reports in a timely manner, that senior FDA officials 
frequently overturn recommended enforcement actions, and that 
enforceable actions imposed by the agency frequently lack 
follow-up to correct identified deficiencies.

Rescheduling of Inspection

    On March 11, 1997, the Subcommittee requested information 
and documents concerning the rescheduling of the inspection of 
Visx, Inc. that coincided with the time that the Chairman and 
President of Visx, Inc. testified at the Subcommittee hearing 
on July 30, 1996. The FDA provided documents and information. 
Committee staff investigated the matter to determine whether 
the rescheduling of the inspection was influenced by knowledge 
that the Visx President would be testifying at the Subcommittee 
hearing. Committee staff found that, although there were 
inconsistencies in interviews with FDA employees about who 
ordered the rescheduling and the justification for it, there 
was insufficient basis to conclude that the rescheduling of the 
inspection was improper.

Management and Performance of FDA

    On March 13, 1997, as part of an examination of the 
management and performance of the FDA, the Subcommittee 
Chairman requested a computer printout listing of FDA 
positions, and a complete set of FDA's official organizational 
charts.
    On June 4, 1997, the Subcommittee Chairman sent letters to 
six FDA contractors requesting information and documents 
related to procurement actions and modifications with the FDA. 
The contractors provided the information and documents in June 
and July 1997.

FDA Reporting Mechanisms

    On March 13, 1997 and May 9, 1997, the Subcommittee 
Chairman sent letters concerning FDA's discontinued Quarterly 
Activities Report and FDA's management of its Internet and 
Intranet sites. On April 4, 1997 and August 11, 1997, the FDA 
provided information and documents.
    On September 9, 1997, the Subcommittee Chairman sent a 
letter asking the question, ``What does the FDA Commissioner or 
Lead Deputy Commissioner receive on a routine basis in terms of 
reports of the FDA's activities?'' On October 24, 1997, the FDA 
responded that the Lead Deputy Commissioner received extensive 
strategic and operational information such as Daily Summaries/
Compilations, Daily ``8:30 Phone Call,'' Weekly Executive 
Committee, Management ``one-on-one,'' ``Weekly Information 
Update,'' Weekly Operations Immediate Office, Weekly General 
Staff Meetings, Weekly Food Additive Petition Inventory Report, 
Prescription Drug User Fee Act Reports, and other routine 
reports. On November 5, 1997, the Subcommittee Chairman 
requested samples of some of these reports, which were 
subsequently provided.

Implementation of Prescription Drug User Fee Act (PDUFA)

    On March 17, 1997, the Subcommittee Chairman sent a letter 
requesting information and documents to obtain an accounting of 
FDA's use of Prescription Drug User Fee Act (PDUFA) funds.
    On April 16, 1997, as part of an examination of how FDA has 
spent PDUFA funds, the Subcommittee Chairman sent a letter 
requesting information about how much reviewer time was spent 
on each application in the review process in Fiscal Year 1996.
    On June 26, 1997, the Subcommittee Chairman sent a letter 
requesting information and documents relating to PDUFA ``rainy 
day funds.''
    On July 16, 1997, the Subcommittee Chairman sent a letter 
requesting information and documents concerning FDA's 
implementation of the PDUFA.

Employee Suggestion Program

    On April 30, 1997, the Subcommittee Chairman sent a letter 
requesting all suggestions forwarded under the FDA's employee 
suggestion program since January 1, 1995 and a list of the of 
the FDA employee suggestions adopted by the FDA. FDA provided 
the information in May 1997.

Alleged Misuse of FDA Resources

    On May 14, 1997 and July 30, 1997, the Subcommittee 
inquired about the apparent use of government resources for a 
cookbook, The Admiral Loves to Cook, a project that did not 
appear closely connected to FDA's public health functions. The 
cookbook was compiled by the Director of the Office of Orphan 
Products Development, and then published as a Government 
Printing Office document. The matter was referred to the HHS 
Inspector General for investigation.

Review of the FDA's Handling of Issues Related to Conjugated Estrogens

    The Subcommittee raised concerns that Wyeth-Ayerst may have 
made misrepresentations in its submissions to FDA regarding 
Premarin, the nation's only approved conjugated estrogens 
product, and that FDA may have failed to adequately review such 
submissions. The Subcommittee requested the Office of Inspector 
General (OIG) in July 1996 to answer specific questions 
regarding: Premarin, another Wyeth-Ayerst product called 
Prempro, the citizen petition related to Premarin, and generic 
versions of Premarin.
    On May 16, 1997, the Inspector General issued its report. 
The report concluded that, according to FDA, there have been no 
unapproved formulations of Premarin. However, the OIG found 
that FDA did not have evidence demonstrating that the currently 
marketed formulation of Premarin is bioequivalent to the 
version tested for osteoporosis in the late 1970s. Concerned 
about the lack of bioequivalency data and the continued safety 
and effectiveness of Premarin, FDA in 1993 directed Wyeth-
Ayerst to conduct a new dose-ranging study of the drug. As of 
January 1997, 30 percent of the planned enrollment had entered 
into the multi-year study.
    The OIG also concluded that the Premarin tablet formulation 
used in the combination drug Prempro slightly differed from the 
marketed Premarin, but Wyeth-Ayerst submitted in vivo 
bioequivalence data to demonstrate that the new and currently 
marketed formulations were bioequivalent.
    Regarding the Subcommittee's concern that FDA may have held 
generic drug firms to a higher standard than the brand-name 
maker of Premarin, the OIG noted that the agency was also 
concerned about possible differing standards in terms of 
bioequivalency requirements for the generic and brand name 
versions. However, upon further investigation, FDA determined 
there were no unapproved reformulations of Premarin that would 
have required Wyeth-Ayerst to submit additional bioequivalency 
data.
    Beyond the Subcommittee's specific questions, the OIG 
identified other concerns regarding the citizen petition 
process--namely that the process has been extended for an 
excessive period of time in the Wyeth-Ayerst case; and FDA does 
not have policies and procedures governing such an important 
process, one which can impact the marketability of generic 
versions of Premarin.

Dr. Stanislaw Burzynski and the Burzynski Research Institute

    On June 5, 1997, the Subcommittee Chairman sent a letter 
seeking further information and documents about the activities 
of the FDA in connection with Dr. Stanislaw Burzynski and/or 
the Burzynski Research Institute. At previous hearings in the 
104th Congress, the Subcommittee had examined allegations of 
abuses of authority involving Dr. Burzynski and the Burzynski 
Research Institute. In July 1997, the FDA provided information 
and documents.

Reclassification of Pedicle Screws

    On June 5, 1997, and February 5, 1998, the Subcommittee 
Chairman sent inquiries about the FDA's delay in issuing a 
final rule to downclassify bone screws from a high-risk device 
classification to a moderate-risk device classification for use 
in the pedicles of the spine during spine surgery. On July 16, 
1997, the Subcommittee Chairman sent a letter concerning 
Mitchell Zeller, FDA's Associate Commissioner for Policy, and 
his contacts with plaintiff lawyers in connection with pedicle 
screws. FDA responded on July 31, 1997 and Secretary Shalala 
responded in August 1997.
    On March 12, 1998, the FDA briefed Subcommittee members and 
staff on the status of the final rule. In July 1998, the rule 
was published in the Federal Register.

Animal Drugs

    On July 9, 1997, the Subcommittee Chairman asked how many 
new chemical entities have been approved in the last five years 
for animal drugs (excluding non-food additives). The FDA 
provided the information.

Procurement Practices at FDA's Center for Biologics Evaluation and 
        Research

    On July 16, 1997, the Subcommittee Chairman requested that, 
to the extent appropriate, the matter of illegal procurement 
practices cited in an internal FDA memorandum be referred to 
the Office of the Inspector General (OIG). On August 6, 1997, 
the FDA informed the Subcommittee that this matter was being 
investigated jointly by the OIG and FDA's Office of Internal 
Affairs. On October 30, 1998, the FDA informed the Subcommittee 
Chairman that the matter had been concluded. The investigation 
revealed that while government funds inappropriately were being 
carried over into the next fiscal year, there was no criminal 
activity. The actions taken were intended to preserve funds 
unused by the end of one fiscal year for use in a subsequent 
fiscal year. The individuals involved were reprimanded and the 
case closed.

Food Import Inspections

    In July 21, 1997, October 7, 1997, and October 28, 1997, 
the Subcommittee Chairman sent a series of letters to FDA 
seeking information about the adequacy of FDA's food import 
inspections. The FDA responded with documents and information.
    On October 8, 1997, the Committee requested an explanation 
for the difference in figures regarding the number of import 
food entries. The May 1997 Report to the President on the 
National Food Safety Initiative states that the FDA is 
responsible for about 2.2 million import food entries. In its 
letter to the Subcommittee Chairman, the FDA stated that FDA 
estimated there were 1.5 million formal entries of food and 
food-related items in FY 96. In its October 22, 1997 response, 
the FDA stated that the difference between the 2.2 million and 
1.5 million was accounted for by the informal entries (entries 
with a value below $1,250). The FDA further stated that 
informal entries usually are not entered into the U.S. Customs' 
electronic system so it is difficult to obtain an exact count.

FDA Postmarketing Drug Surveillance Program

    On October 22, 1997, the Subcommittee Chairman requested 
information from the Secretary of Health and Human Services 
about the Food and Drug Administration's (FDA) postmarketing 
drug surveillance program. On November 25, 1997 and December 
11, 1997, the FDA responded with documents and information.
    On October 7, 1998, the Full Committee Chairman, with 
Senator James Jeffords, the Chairman of the Senate Labor and 
Human Resources Committee, and Senator Bill Frist, requested 
that GAO initiate a comprehensive study of the U.S. system for 
ensuring the safety of prescription drugs. The study would 
examine not just FDA's post-marketing surveillance activities, 
but the entire system including the pre- and post-marketing 
activities conducted by both public and private organizations.
    Prior to initiating this comprehensive study, the Chairman 
and the Senators requested GAO to convene an advisory panel of 
experts on adverse drug events and prescription drug safety. 
The purpose of the panel would be to help identify the key 
questions and issues that should be examined concerning adverse 
drug events and drug safety, as well as possible methodological 
approaches to addressing these issues. Moreover, such a panel 
would also provide useful information to congressional staff 
about the key public policy aspects of this issue.

Preliminary Inquiry on Femoral Artery Device Approval Process

    On October 31, 1997, the Subcommittee raised concerns with 
FDA about possible preferential treatment toward one sponsor 
for femoral artery closure devices as well as possible fraud 
concerning the clinical trials of this sponsor.
    Committee staff reviewed the materials, and met with FDA 
and representatives for both companies involved in the matter. 
All parties were in agreement about the Committee staff 
contacting an independent outside expert for opinions on 
certain issues in connection with this matter. Committee staff 
contacted such an expert familiar with both products. The 
expert was of the opinion that FDA's handling of the premarket 
application in question was appropriate and that the control 
times in the clinical study alleged to be suspect were 
consistent with times associated with the expert's clinical 
practice. Internal FDA documents did not substantiate 
allegations of preferential treatment or improper conduct.

Adverse Event Data for RU-486

    On December 18, 1997, the Subcommittee Chairman sent a 
letter requesting information and documents pertaining to FDA's 
adverse drug reaction reporting system and the disclosure of 
adverse event data received from foreign countries during 
consideration of the pending new drug application for 
mifepristone (RU-486). On January 16, 1998, the FDA responded, 
and the Subcommittee Chairman sent follow-up questions on 
February 4, 1998.

Office of Criminal Investigations

    On March 11, 1998 and June 4, 1998, the Subcommittee 
Chairman continued the investigation of the management of the 
FDA by seeking information about certain matters primarily 
related to the management of the FDA's Office of Criminal 
Investigations (OCI).
    The FDA responded to these inquiries in August and 
September 1998.

FDA's Practice of ``Scrubbing'' Confidential Information From 
        Surplussed Computers

    On April 23, 1998, the Subcommittee Chairman sent a letter 
to FDA requesting information related to the practice of 
``scrubbing'' confidential, proprietary information from 
surplussed computers within FDA. In addition, the Subcommittee 
Chairman requested in April 1998 that the GAO study this 
matter.

Proposed Redesign of the Office of Consumer Affairs and the Office of 
        Special Health Issues

    On May 7, 1998, the Subcommittee Chairman sent a letter to 
FDA expressing concerns about, and seeking information about, a 
proposed merger of the Office of Special Health Issues with the 
Office of Consumer Affairs. The Subcommittee Chairman was 
concerned about how such a merger would impact FDA's 
responsiveness to patients and why the FDA treated the decision 
as an internal matter, with no apparent plans to solicit 
comments from the patient groups whose members use the services 
provided by the Office of Special Health Issues. On May 28, 
1998, the FDA provided its explanation of the matter. The FDA 
decided not to proceed with the proposed merger of the offices.

Medical Device Tracking

    On May 13, 1998, the Subcommittee Chairman asked the 
General Accounting Office to provide information on the Food 
and Drug Administration's implementation of the medical device 
tracking regulation under the Safe Medical Devices Act of 1990. 
On September 24, 1998, the GAO issued its report, FDA Can 
Improve Oversight of Tracking and Recall Systems. The GAO found 
several weaknesses in FDA's approach for determining whether 
device manufacturers are operating tracking systems capable of 
locating and removing defective devices from the market and 
notifying patients who use them. These weaknesses threaten the 
agency's ability to adequately protect the public. First, FDA's 
inspections of the tracking systems did not include independent 
audits that could verify the completeness and accuracy of data 
in the systems. GAO also found that FDA's recall data showed 
that the industry and FDA had not acted in a timely manner to 
correct and remove defective devices from the market. The 
report contained recommendations to the FDA Commissioner to 
improve FDA's ability to monitor manufacturers' compliance with 
the medical device tracking regulation and conduct recalls of 
tracked devices in a timely manner.

Use of Propylene Glycol in Medicines

    On June 23, 1998, the Subcommittee Chairman sent an 
information and document request to FDA concerning public 
health questions raised by the use of propylene glycol in 
medicines. The FDA responded in August 1998.

Counterfeit Bulk Drugs

    On August 4, 1998 and August 6, 1998, the Full Committee 
Chairman and the Subcommittee Chairman sent document and 
information requests to the FDA and the U.S. Customs Service as 
part of the Committee's assessment of the public health threat 
to U.S. consumers posed by counterfeit bulk drug products (both 
animal and human drugs) and a determination of the 
effectiveness of U.S. agencies dealing with this issue. During 
September-November 1998, the FDA and the U.S. Customs Service 
provided documents and information in response to these 
requests.

    HEARINGS AND INVESTIGATIVE ACTIVITIES PERTAINING TO THE NUCLEAR 
                         REGULATORY COMMISSION

                        Investigative Activities

    In the 105th Congress, the Committee on Commerce conducted 
oversight of the NRC's regulation of commercial nuclear power 
plants by initiating two investigations into shutdowns of 
commercial reactors. One investigation focused on the shutdown 
of the three reactors operated by Northeast Utilities at the 
Millstone Power station in Connecticut, and the other focused 
on the shutdown of the two reactors operated by Commonwealth 
Edison at the Zion power station in Illinois. In light of the 
NRC's January 1997 decision to add 11 plants to its Watch List 
of problem commercial nuclear plants requiring increased 
regulatory attention, the Committee's oversight efforts 
primarily focused on the NRC's ability to ensure adequate 
protection of the public health and safety through its 
regulation of commercial nuclear power plants.

The Shutdown of the Millstone Nuclear Power Station Operated by 
        Northeast Utilities

    On February 26, 1997 and February 27, 1997 Committee staff 
conducted a site visit to NRC Region I which included Northeast 
Utilities' Corporate Headquarters and the Millstone power 
station in Connecticut, to ascertain the extent of the 
regulatory problems which had led to the shutdown of Millstone 
and to determine the adequacy of the NRC's measures to ensure 
public health and safety at the site in the future. In the 
course of the site visit, Committee staff conducted 16 separate 
interviews with representatives from the Nuclear Regulatory 
Commission, Northeast Utilities, the Connecticut Department of 
Public Utility Control, and interested public parties. 
Following the site visit, the Committee continued its oversight 
of the NRC's efforts to bring the station into compliance with 
NRC regulations in order to restart the reactors. As part of 
its oversight effort, the Committee requested the Institute of 
Nuclear Power Operations (INPO) to provide copies of their 
confidential evaluation reports on Millstone to the Committee, 
in order to assess the adequacy of INPO's evaluation and self-
regulatory process with regard to Millstone. On June 29, 1998 
the NRC authorized Northeast Utilities to restart Millstone 
Unit 3. The Committee continues to monitor the situation at 
Millstone closely because the plant remains on the Watch List 
and Unit 1 and 2 remain shutdown.

The Shutdown of the Zion Nuclear Power Station Operated by Commonwealth 
        Edison

    On October 28 and October 29, 1997, staff conducted a site 
visit to NRC Region III which included the NRC's Region III 
headquarters, Commonwealth Edison's Nuclear Operations 
Division, and Zion Nuclear Energy Station. The purpose of the 
visit was two-fold: (1) to ascertain the safety problems which 
led to the shutdown of the Zion nuclear plant and the NRC's 
decision to place four Commonwealth Edison nuclear plants on 
the Watch List in January 1997; and (2) to assess the adequacy 
of the NRC's subsequent efforts to end the cyclical nature of 
the deterioration in safety performance in Commonwealth 
Edison's Nuclear Division. In the course of the site visit, the 
Committee conducted 14 interviews with representatives from the 
NRC, Commonwealth Edison, the Illinois Department of Nuclear 
Safety, and interested public parties. As part of its inquiry, 
the Committee also requested copies of Commonwealth Edison 
evaluation reports from INPO.
    In addition to the confidential evaluation reports which 
INPO provided to the Committee pursuant to the Committee's 
document request, INPO released a special public report on 
November 25, 1997, which was highly critical of Commonwealth 
Edison's overall performance and which highlighted serious 
weaknesses in the safety culture at Zion. In January 1998, the 
NRC added the two nuclear reactors at Commonwealth Edison's 
Quad Cities facility to its Watch List. Subsequently, on 
January 15, 1998, Commonwealth Edison announced the permanent 
shutdown of Zion. Although Zion's pending closure led the NRC 
to remove its reactors from the Watch List, six other 
Commonwealth Edison nuclear reactors remained on the Watch List 
issued by the NRC in June 1998. The Committee continues to 
monitor the NRC's efforts to end the long-standing cycle of 
periodic safety deterioration at Commonwealth Edison plants by 
introducing measures designed to improve both the individual 
performance of each nuclear plant and the overall performance 
of Commonwealth Edison's corporate management.

OVERSIGHT AND INVESTIGATIVE ACTIVITIES PERTAINING TO THE SECURITIES AND 
                          EXCHANGE COMMISSION

                        Investigative Activities

    In the 105th Congress, the Committee conducted oversight of 
the SEC and the regulatory activities of the stock exchanges by 
initiating an inquiry into illegal profit sharing arrangements 
between Oakford Corporation and brokers in the New York Stock 
Exchange (NYSE). In addition, the Committee continued its 
oversight of the SEC's implementation of the initiative to 
privatize the Electronic Data Gathering and Retrieval (EDGAR) 
system for corporate filings.

Illegal Profit Sharing Arrangements on the New York Stock Exchange

    On March 25, 1998, pursuant to a request from the 
Committee, the New York Stock Exchange representatives met with 
Committee staff to discuss the profit sharing arrangements 
undertaken by Oakford Corporation (a NYSE registered broker-
dealer) and eight NYSE brokers between October 1993 and March 
1998. The NYSE reported on the joint investigation conducted by 
NYSE in conjunction with the SEC, the US Attorney's Office in 
Manhattan, the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) and the 
Internal Revenue Service's Criminal Investigation Division, 
which resulted in the suspension of eight NYSE members and four 
member firms as well as the first criminal prosecution under 
Section 11A of Securities Exchange Act of 1934 and a civil 
enforcement action by the SEC under Section 11A and Section 17A 
of the 1934 Act. The NYSE also outlined the actions it intended 
to take to strengthen its Market Surveillance process.
    On April 17, 1998, the SEC provided the Committee with a 
preliminary status report from SEC's Office of Compliance 
Inspections and Examinations on the SEC's expansion of the 
initial for-cause inspection in order to assess whether other 
brokers at the NYSE and other exchanges have been involved in 
similar illegal profit sharing arrangements. On July 23, 1998, 
the civil case was dismissed without prejudice at the request 
of the SEC because of discovery issues related to the criminal 
case. As of December, 1998, the criminal investigation was 
still ongoing and three NYSE floorbrokers had pled guilty to 
criminal charges stemming from the Oakford Investigation. The 
Committee continues to monitor the situation to determine the 
adequacy of the implementation of market surveillance reforms 
by NYSE and SEC in response to the systemic market problems 
identified with regard to the Oakford case.

EDGAR Privatization

    On April 28, 1997, pursuant to the Committee's oversight 
responsibility for the SEC and the EDGAR privatization 
requirements of the National Securities Markets Improvement Act 
of 1996, the SEC reported to the Committee on the progress of 
its EDGAR privatization initiative. On May 23, 1997, the SEC 
provided the Committee with a refined EDGAR privatization 
initiative. On June 30, 1998, the SEC awarded BDM 
International, Inc. a three-year contract worth $49 million to 
modernize and maintain the EDGAR system. At the end of the 
three years, the SEC has the right to require a full 
recompetition of the contract or it may extend the BDM contract 
for up to five years, for a total eight-year cost of $102 
million. The contract which went into effect on July 1, 1998, 
provides for a dramatic reduction in the cost of a real-time 
EDGAR subscription, from the current rate of $278,000 to 
$72,686, or $47,439 if the number of subscribers increases to 
16. The Committee continues to monitor the EDGAR privatization 
process in order to ensure that the SEC works with Congress to 
expand the options for accessibility and privatization of 
EDGAR, and also to ensure that the SEC does not incur 
unreasonable costs in its efforts to modernize the existing 
system.

                             Hearings Held

    FDA Policy on Home Drug Testing Kits.--Oversight Hearing on 
FDA Policy on Home Drug Testing Kits. Hearing held on February 
6, 1997. PRINTED, Serial Number 105-4.
    Review of the Environmental Protection Agency's Proposed 
Ozone and Particulate Matter National Ambient Air Quality 
Standards (NAAQS) Revisions--Part 1.--Joint Oversight Hearing 
with the Subcommittee on Health and the Environment on The 
Clean Air Scientific Advisory Committee's (CASAC) Review. 
Hearing held on April 10, 1997. PRINTED, Serial Number 105-19.
    Review of the Environmental Protection Agency's Proposed 
Ozone and Particulate Matter National Ambient Air Quality 
Standards (NAAQS) Revisions--Part 1.--Joint Oversight Hearing 
with the Subcommittee on Health and the Environment on the 
Development of the Regulatory Impact Analysis for EPA's 
Proposed Revisions. Hearing held on April 17, 1997. PRINTED, 
Serial Number 105-19.
    Review of the Environmental Protection Agency's Proposed 
Ozone and Particulate Matter NAAQS Revisions--Part 2.--Joint 
Oversight Hearing with the Subcommittee on Health and the 
Environment on The Perspectives of State and Local Elected 
Officials. Hearing held on May 1, 1997. PRINTED, Serial Number 
105-24.
    Department of Energy's Office of Science and Technology.--
Oversight Hearing on the Department of Energy's Office of 
Science and Technology (OST). Hearing held on May 7, 1997. 
PRINTED, Serial Number 105-29.
    Review of the Environmental Protection Agency's Proposed 
Ozone and Particulate NAAQS Revisions--Part 2.--Joint Oversight 
Hearing with the Subcommittee on Health and the Environment on 
the Health Effects of Ozone and Particulate Matter. Hearing 
held May 8, 1997. PRINTED, Serial Number 105-24.
    Review of the Environmental Protection Agency's Proposed 
Ozone and Particulate NAAQS Revisions--Part 2.--Joint Oversight 
Hearing with the Subcommittee on Health and the Environment on 
the Views of the Environmental Protection Agency Administrator. 
Hearing held on May 15, 1997. PRINTED, Serial Number 105-24.
    Continued Management Concerns at the National Institute of 
Health.--Oversight Hearing on Continued Management Concerns at 
the National Institute of Health (NIH), focusing on management 
concerns relating to human-embryo research funding and laws. 
Hearing held on June 19, 1997. PRINTED, Serial Number 105-26.
    The Department of Energy's Implementation of Contact 
Reform: Problems with the Fixed-Price Contract to Clean Up Pit 
9.--Oversight Hearing on The Department of Energy's 
Implementation of Contact Reform: Problems with the Fixed-Price 
Contract to Clean Up Pit 9. Hearing held on July 28, 1997. 
PRINTED, Serial Number 105-45.
    The Department of Energy's Implementation of Contact 
Reform: Problems with the Fixed-Price Contract to Clean Up Pit 
9.--Oversight Hearing on The Department of Energy's 
Implementation of Contact Reform: Problems with the Fixed-Price 
Contract to Clean Up Pit 9. Hearing held on July 29, 1997. 
PRINTED, Serial Number 105-45.
    Adequacy of Access to Investigate Drugs for Seriously Ill 
Patients.--Oversight Hearing on the Adequacy of Access to 
Investigate Drugs for Seriously Ill Patients. Hearing held on 
September 23, 1997. PRINTED, Serial Number 105-44.
    Medicare Waste, Fraud and Abuse.--Oversight Hearing on 
Medicare Waste, Fraud and Abuse. Hearing held on September 29, 
1997. PRINTED, Serial Number 105-58.
    Implementation of the Clean Air Act National Ambient Air 
Quality Standards (NAAQS) Revisions for Ozone and Particulate 
Matter.--Joint Oversight Hearing with the Subcommittee on 
Health and the Environment on Implementation of the Clean Air 
Act National Ambient Air Quality Standards (NAAQS) Revisions 
for Ozone and Particulate Matter. Hearing held on October 1, 
1997. PRINTED, Serial Number 105-62.
    Assessing the Department of Energy's Management of the 
National Laboratory System.--Oversight Hearing on Assessing the 
Department of Energy's Management of the National Laboratory 
System. Hearing held on October 9, 1997. PRINTED, Serial Number 
105-55.
    The Department of Energy's Implementation of Contract 
Reform: Mismanagement of Performance-Based Contracting.--
Oversight Hearing on the Department of Energy's Implementation 
of Contract Reform: Mismanagement of Performance-Based 
Contracting. Hearing held on October 23, 1997. PRINTED, Serial 
Number 105-57.
    Medicare Home Health.--Oversight Hearing on Medicare Home 
Health. Hearing held on October 29, 1997. PRINTED, Serial 
Number 105-64.
    The Federal-State Relationship: A Look Into the 
Environmental Protection Agency Regulatory Reinvention 
Efforts.--Oversight Hearing on the Federal-State Relationship: 
A Look Into the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) 
Regulatory Reinvention Efforts. Hearing held on November 4, 
1997. PRINTED, Serial Number 105-51.
    The Department of Energy's Funding of Molten Metal 
Technology--Part 1.--Oversight Hearing on the Department of 
Energy's Funding of Molten Metal Technology. Hearing held on 
November 5, 1997. PRINTED, Serial Number 105-69.
    The Department of Energy's Funding of Molten Metal 
Technology--Part 1.--Oversight Hearing on the Department of 
Energy's Funding of Molten Metal Technology. Hearing held on 
November 7, 1997. PRINTED, Serial Number 105-69.
    The Department of Energy's Funding of Molten Metal 
Technology--Part 2.--Oversight Hearing on the Department of 
Energy's Funding of Molten Metal Technology. Hearing held on 
November 21, 1997. PRINTED, Serial Number 105-77.
    The Department of Energy's Funding of Molten Metal 
Technology--Part 2.--Oversight Hearing on the Department of 
Energy's Funding of Molten Metal Technology. Hearing held on 
February 12, 1997. PRINTED, Serial Number 105-77.
    Medicare Waste, Fraud, and Abuse: A Regional Perspective.--
Oversight Field Hearing in Colleyville, Texas on Medicare 
Waste, Fraud, and Abuse: A Regional Perspective. Hearing held 
on March 2, 1998. PRINTED, Serial Number 105-81.
    The Federal-State Relationship: Environmental Self 
Audits.--Oversight Hearing on the Federal-State Relationship: 
Environmental Self Audits. Hearing held on March 17, 1998. 
PRINTED, Serial Number 105-79.
    The General Accounting Office's Investigative Findings of 
Alleged Medicare Improprieties by a Home Health Agency.--
Oversight Hearing on the General Accounting Office's 
Investigative Findings of Alleged Medicare Improprieties by a 
Home Health Agency. Hearing held on March 19, 1998. PRINTED, 
Serial Number 105-73.
    Food and Drug Administration Management Concerns.--
Oversight Hearing on Food and Drug Administration (FDA) 
Management Concerns. Hearing held on April 1, 1998. PRINTED, 
Serial Number 105-75.
    Department of Health and Human Services Inspector General's 
Audit of the Health Care Financing Administration's Fiscal Year 
1997 Financial Statements.--Joint Oversight Hearing with the 
Subcommittee on Health and Environment and the Committee on 
Government Reform and Oversight Subcommittee on Government 
Management, Information, and Technology on Department of Health 
and Human Services Inspector General's Audit of the Health Care 
Financing Administration's Fiscal Year 1997 Financial 
Statements. Hearing held on April 24, 1998. PRINTED, Serial 
Number 105-127.
    Department of Energy's Hanford Spent Nuclear Fuel 
Project.--Oversight Hearing on Problems with the Department of 
Energy's Hanford Spent Nuclear Fuel Project. Hearing held on 
May 12, 1998. PRINTED, Serial Number 105-90.
    Medicare Billing: Savings Through Implementation of 
Commercial Software.--Oversight Hearing on Medicare Billing: 
Savings Through Implementation of Commercial Software. Hearing 
held on May 19, 1998. PRINTED, Serial Number 105-96.
    States' Alternative Environmental Compliance Strategies.--
Oversight Hearing on States' Alternative Environmental 
Compliance Strategies. Hearing held on June 23, 1998. PRINTED, 
Serial Number 105-97.
    The Department of Health and Human Services' Policy for 
Federal Workplace Drug Testing Programs.--Oversight Hearing on 
Department of Health and Human Services' Policy for Federal 
Workplace Drug Testing Programs. Hearing held on July 23, 1998. 
PRINTED, Serial Number 105-106.
    The Circumstances Surrounding the Federal Communications 
Commission's Planned Relocation to the Portals--Part 1.--
Oversight Hearing on the Circumstances Surrounding the Federal 
Communications Commission's Planned Relocation to the Portals, 
including the efforts of Franklin L. Haney and his 
representatives with respect to this matter and the 
circumstances surrounding the payments of fees to those 
representatives. Hearing held on August 4, 1998. PRINTED, 
Serial Number 105-120.
    Environmental Protection Agency's Title VI Interim Guidance 
and Alternative State Approaches.--Oversight Hearing on the 
Environmental Protection Agency's Title VI Interim Guidance and 
Alternative State Approaches. Hearing held August 6, 1998. 
PRINTED, Serial Number 105-110.
    The Circumstances Surrounding the Federal Communications 
Commission's Planned Relocation to the Portals--Part 1.--
Oversight Hearing on the Circumstances Surrounding the Federal 
Communications Commission's Planned Relocation to the Portals, 
including the efforts of Franklin L. Haney and his 
representatives with respect to this matter and the 
circumstances surrounding the payments of fees to those 
representatives. Hearing held on August 7, 1998. PRINTED, 
Serial Number 105-120.
    The Circumstances Surrounding the Federal Communications 
Commission's Planned Relocation to the Portals--Part 2.--
Oversight Hearing on the Circumstances Surrounding the Federal 
Communications Commission's Planned Relocation to the Portals, 
including the efforts of Franklin L. Haney and his 
representatives with respect to this matter and the 
circumstances surrounding the payments of fees to those 
representatives. Hearing held on September 10, 1998. PRINTED, 
Serial Number 105-121.
    The Circumstances Surrounding the Federal Communications 
Commission's Planned Relocation to the Portals--Part 2.--
Oversight Hearing on the Circumstances Surrounding the Federal 
Communications Commission's Planned Relocation to the Portals, 
including the efforts of Franklin L. Haney and his 
representatives with respect to this matter and the 
circumstances surrounding the payments of fees to those 
representatives. Hearing held on September 15, 1998. PRINTED, 
Serial Number 105-121.
    The Circumstances Surrounding the Federal Communications 
Commission's Planned Relocation to the Portals--Part 2.--
Oversight Hearing on the Circumstances Surrounding the Federal 
Communications Commission's Planned Relocation to the Portals, 
including the efforts of Franklin L. Haney and his 
representatives with respect to this matter and the 
circumstances surrounding the payments of fees to those 
representatives. Hearing held on September 17, 1998. PRINTED, 
Serial Number 105-121.
    Implementation of the Abstinence Education Provisions of 
the Welfare Reform Law.--Oversight Hearing on the 
Implementation of the Abstinence Education Provisions of the 
Welfare Reform Law. Hearing held on September 25, 1998. 
PRINTED, Serial number 105-123.
    U.S.-E.U. (European Union) Mutual Recognition Agreement on 
Drug Inspections.--Oversight Hearing on the U.S.-E.U. (European 
Union) Mutual agreement on Drug inspections. Hearing held on 
October 2, 1998. PRINTED, Serial Number 105-129.
    Abuses of the Medicare Partial Hospitalization Benefit at 
Community Mental Health Centers.--Oversight Hearing on Abuses 
of the Medicare Partial Hospitalization Benefit at Community 
Mental Health Centers. Hearing held on October 5, 1998. 
PRINTED, Serial Number 105-124.
    The Circumstances Surrounding the Federal Communications 
Commission's Planned Relocation to the Portals--Part 3.--
Oversight Hearing on the Circumstances Surrounding the Federal 
Communications Commission's Planned Relocation to the Portals, 
including the efforts of Franklin L. Haney and his 
representatives with respect to this matter and the 
circumstances surrounding the payments of fees to those 
representatives. Hearing held on October 6, 1998. PRINTED, 
Serial Number 105-122.
    A Review of the Department of Energy's Hanford Radioactive 
Tank Waste Privatization Contract.--Oversight Hearing on A 
Review of the Department of Energy's Hanford Radioactive Tank 
Waste Privatization Contract. Hearing held on October 8, 1998. 
PRINTED, Serial Number 105-137.
    The Circumstances Surrounding the Federal Communications 
Commission's Planned Relocation to the Portals--Part 3.--
Oversight Hearing on the Circumstances Surrounding the Federal 
Communications Commission's Planned Relocation to the Portals, 
including the efforts of Franklin L. Haney and his 
representatives with respect to this matter and the 
circumstances surrounding the payments of fees to those 
representatives. Hearing held on October 9, 1998. PRINTED, 
Serial Number 105-122.
       Committee on Commerce Oversight Plan for the 105th Congress

    Rule X, clause 2(d) of the Rules of the House of 
Representatives for the 104th Congress requires each standing 
Committee in the first session of a Congress to adopt an 
oversight plan for the two-year period of the Congress and to 
submit the plan to the Committee on Government Reform and 
Oversight and the Committee on House Oversight.
    Rule XI, clause 1(2)(d)(1) requires each Committee to 
submit to the House not later than January 2 of each odd-
numbered year, a report on the activities of that committee 
under Rule X and Rule XI during the Congress ending on January 
3 of such year. Clause 1(2)(d)(3) of Rule XI also requires that 
such report shall include a summary of the oversight plans 
submitted by the Committee pursuant to clause 2(d) of Rule X; a 
summary of the actions taken and recommendations made with 
respect to each such plan; and a summary of any additional 
oversight activities undertaken by the Committee, and any 
recommendations made or actions taken thereon.
    Part A of this section contains the Committee on Commerce 
Oversight Plan for the 105th Congress which the Full Committee 
considered and adopted by a voice vote on February 13, 1997, a 
quorum being present.
    Part B of this section contains a summary of the actions 
taken by the Committee on Commerce to implement the Oversight 
Plan for the 105th Congress and the recommendations made with 
respect to this plan. Part B also contains a summary of the 
additional oversight activities undertaken by the Committee, 
and the recommendations made or actions taken thereon.
                                 PART A

                  Committee on Commerce Oversight Plan

                     u.s. house of representatives

                             105th congress

                    congressman tom bliley, chairman

    Rule X, clause 2(d) of the Rules of the House requires each 
standing Committee to adopt an oversight plan for the two-year 
period of the Congress and to submit the plan to the Committees 
on Government Reform and Oversight and House Oversight not 
later than February 15 of the first session of the Congress.
    This is the oversight plan of the Committee on Commerce for 
the 105th Congress. It includes the areas in which the 
Committee expects to conduct oversight during the 105th 
Congress, but does not preclude oversight or investigation of 
additional matters as the need arises.
                              ----------                              


                     HEALTH AND ENVIRONMENT ISSUES

             medicare and medicaid: waste, fraud, and abuse

    The Committee will continue its efforts to identify 
instances of and opportunities for waste, fraud, and abuse in 
the Medicare and Medicaid programs. This oversight will focus 
on a range of program areas, including administration, 
contracting, provider reimbursement, and eligibility 
determination.

                                medicaid

    During the course of the 104th Congress, the Committee 
reviewed allegations that Federal statutory, regulatory, and 
administrative requirements of the Medicaid program have 
impeded the effective delivery of medical assistance services 
to eligible individuals. The Committee will continue this 
effort, with particular attention to the Administration's 
waiver process, the successes achieved by States granted 
additional flexibility to operate the program, and the extent 
to which Federal requirements increase coverage costs and limit 
States' ability to extend coverage to all eligible, and 
additional non-eligible, individuals and families.

                health care service delivery mechanisms

    The Committee will review the various health care service 
delivery mechanisms, including fee-for-service, Health 
Maintenance Organizations (HMOs), and Provider Service 
Organizations (PSOs). The Committee will review these delivery 
mechanisms in terms of quality, cost, and satisfaction.

         implementation of the health insurance portability act

    On August 21, 1996, the Health Insurance Portability Act of 
1996 was signed into law. This Act, which is based on 
legislation reported out of the Committee, reforms the nation's 
health insurance market by removing preexisting condition 
restrictions, eliminating ``job lock,'' establishing tough 
anti-fraud and abuse measures, achieving greater tax fairness, 
and creating tax-favored Medical Savings Accounts. The 
Committee will closely monitor the Administration's 
implementation of the Act, with particular attention paid to 
the promulgation of regulations issued pursuant to it.

           implementation of the food quality protection act

    On August 3, 1996, the Food Quality Protection Act of 1996 
was signed into law. This Act, which was reported out of the 
Committee, fundamentally reforms the nation's pesticide safety 
laws by creating a unified safety standard, establishing 
special protections for infants and children, permitting 
benefits consideration for pesticides, improving the detection 
of estrogenic effects, enhancing consumer information, and 
achieving greater uniformity of pesticide regulation. The 
Committee will closely monitor the Administration's 
implementation of the Act, with particular attention paid to 
the promulgation of regulations issued pursuant to it.

                        program reauthorizations

    As part of its consideration of the reauthorization of 
programs in the Public Health Service Act and the Substance 
Abuse and Mental Health Services Act, the Committee will review 
the efficacy and efficiency of the programs that need to be 
reauthorized. This review will focus on the extent to which the 
objectives of these programs are being met, whether essential 
needs are being adequately addressed, the ability of 
implementing agencies and other participants to comply with the 
statutory requirements and Congressional intent relating to 
these programs, and the areas in which program performance can 
be enhanced.

            food and drug administration's approval process

    As part of the Committee's ongoing effort to improve the 
Food and Drug Administration's (FDA's) review of applications 
for approval of new drugs, biologics, devices, and food 
additives, the Committee will continue its investigation of the 
delays experienced in this process, the nature and extent of 
these delays, the measures taken by the Agency to address these 
problems, and the medical, human, and financial impact they 
impose.

              fda management issues and reform initiatives

    The Committee will examine the role and operations of FDA's 
senior management, the Commissioner's Office, the relationship 
of the Commissioner's Office to the drug center, the biologics 
center, the device center, the veterinary center, and the food 
center. The Committee will examine how FDA maintains 
appropriate protection of confidential information relating to 
regulated products as well. The Committee will also examine the 
adequacy and effect of the proposed Reinventing Government 
Initiatives, including their implementation, impact, and 
ability to streamline FDA without reform legislation.

                     prescription drug user fee act

    Several important issues relate to the reauthorization of 
the Prescription Drug User Fee Act (PDUFA) that expires at the 
end of Fiscal Year 1997 including an examination of why, 
although review times for new drug applications have declined, 
development times have increased; critical examinations of how 
FDA has spent PDUFA user fees and of the relationship between 
programs funded only by appropriated funds and those funded 
through user fees; and an investigation of whether FDA has been 
soliciting other industries to support user fees for their 
products such as medical devices and certain food related 
petitions. The Committee will review each of these issues.

                fda regulation of food and food products

    The Committee will examine FDA's implementation of food 
labeling requirements under the Nutritional Labeling and 
Education Act (NLEA) and other FDA policies on food labeling, 
FDA's review of food additive petitions, and FDA's 
implementation of its biotechnology food policy. The Committee 
will also review the operations of the FDA's Center for Food 
Safety & Applied Nutrition (CFSAN) and the effect of FDA 
regulation on innovation in the food industry.

     the relationship between fda's product review and compliance 
                         enforcement functions

    The Committee will examine the ways that FDA maintains 
separation between its product review and compliance 
enforcement functions.

                     fda regulation of advertising

    The Committee will examine the ways that the FDA regulates 
product advertising. For example, given the recent explosion of 
available information about medical products on the Internet, 
the Committee will examine the FDA's regulation of the 
promotion of drugs and devices over the Internet.

          consumer access to home testing services and devices

    The Committee will continue its oversight and 
investigations on consumer access to home testing services and 
devices. The Committee will hold an oversight hearing on the 
Food and Drug Administration's final regulation to provide for 
marketing of over-the-counter drugs-of-abuse testing systems to 
parents without the manufacturer being required to file a 
premarket application. In addition, the Committee will continue 
its oversight of FDA's regulatory actions relating to non-
invasive glucose monitors and hair-based home drug testing 
systems.

                 allegations of fda abuses of authority

    The Subcommittee held a hearing on July 25, 1995, on 
allegations of FDA abuses of authority. The hearing focused on 
FDA operations and procedures, and especially on allegations of 
abuses of power brought forward by witnesses on behalf of 
entities that are currently or possibly subject to FDA 
regulation. Patients who believed they benefited from the 
products of three of the five entities represented also 
testified at the hearing about the consumer impact from the 
alleged acts. The Committee will continue to review allegations 
of FDA abuses of authority and also review issues of due 
process and consistency in applying regulatory standards.

                          foreign inspections

    The Committee initiated an investigation last Congress into 
FDA's foreign inspections of manufacturers' bulk 
pharmaceuticals. The Committee will continue this 
investigation.

                 regulation of the practice of medicine

    FDA frequently takes regulatory actions which appear to 
exceed its charter to regulate drugs, biologics, and devices, 
and which intrude on the practice of medicine and the 
availability of medical information. Examples of questionable 
FDA interference with the practice of medicine include the 
regulation of tissue, umbilical cord blood, homebrew software, 
custom devices, off-label drug information, breast implants, 
and off-label use of medical devices. The Committee will also 
continue to oversee FDA's regulatory practices and how they 
particularly affect cancer patient access to unapproved 
treatments.

            national institutes of health research integrity

    The Committee will investigate the integrity of National 
Institutes of Health (NIH) biomedical research as well as the 
adequacy of investigations conducted by the Office of Research 
Integrity.

                    clean air act amendments of 1990

    During the 104th Congress, the Committee undertook a 
comprehensive review of the implementation and enforcement of 
the 1990 Amendments to the Clean Air Act. Hearings examined the 
employee commute option program, enhanced vehicle inspection 
and maintenance, the reformulated gasoline program, Title V 
permitting, the promulgation of MACT standards under Title III, 
regulations implementing sections 112(g), (j), and (r), 
national ambient air quality standards, and the Title VI 
stratospheric ozone program. The Committee intends to continue 
its oversight activities regarding the implementation and 
enforcement of the Clean Air Act and the 1990 Amendments and to 
conduct further detailed review of regulations which are 
proposed and promulgated to implement the Act, some of which 
are discussed below in greater detail.

         any credible evidence/compliance assurance monitoring

    In February 1997, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) 
is expected to promulgate an ``any credible evidence'' final 
rule. The rule concerns what evidence may be used to determine 
whether a violation of the Clean Air Act has occurred. EPA is 
also expected to finalize a ``compliance assurance monitoring'' 
(CAM) rule, originally proposed in October 1993. A draft CAM 
rulemaking was opened for public comment in August 1996. The 
rule is intended to implement statutory language concerning 
``enhanced monitoring'' added by the 1990 Amendments. The 
Committee intends to review closely both rules with respect to 
their adherence to the legislative language and intent of the 
1990 Amendments.

               vehicle inspection and maintenance issues

    The Clean Air Act requires that certain nonattainment areas 
(and certain other areas in the ozone transport region) adopt a 
vehicle Inspection and Maintenance (I&M) program for in-use 
motor vehicles registered in each urbanized area (in the 
nonattainment area). In the past, the Committee has examined 
the effectiveness of these I&M programs. One of the factors in 
assessing program effectiveness is the I&M avoidance rate. 
Because a minority of vehicles cause a majority of pollution, 
even a small avoidance rate could render an I&M program 
ineffective. The problem of vehicles avoiding I&M is 
exacerbated in border towns, where vehicles commute to work 
from across the border into a nonattainment area, thus 
contributing to air quality problems, but avoiding I&M 
inspections. The Committee intends to examine the overall 
effectiveness of I&M programs, and in particular, the problems 
of I&M avoidance faced by nonattainment areas on the border.

                 national ambient air quality standards

    On November 27, 1996, the Environmental Protection Agency 
announced its intention to propose new National Ambient Air 
Quality Standards (NAAQS) for ozone and particulate matter. The 
proposals were subsequently published in the Federal Register 
and the EPA intends to promulgate final regulations by July 19, 
1997. As proposed, the new NAAQS for ozone and particulate 
matter would result in the designation and redesignation of 
many areas of the country into ``nonattainment'' for ozone, 
particulate matter, or both. The proposals, if implemented, 
would also result in substantial cost to the economy and 
require additional regulatory actions to be undertaken at the 
State level.
    The Committee intends to review closely the proposed 
standards including the legal and regulatory process which led 
to their proposal. In addition, the Committee will examine the 
impact that the new standards could have on individuals and 
businesses in affected areas, and will review the scientific 
documentation regarding the need for new standards and the 
anticipated benefits from them.

                               project xl

    ``Project XL'' refers to a broad set of actions by EPA to 
give sources subject to regulation under the Clean Air Act and 
other environmental laws flexibility to develop alternative 
environmental strategies on the condition that such strategies 
produce greater environmental benefits. The program, which 
stands for ``excellence and leadership,'' has implemented three 
projects, has 12 projects in development, and proposals for 
nine further projects. The Committee is interested in examining 
the opportunities provided by the Agency's implementation of 
this program.

                           new source review

    EPA is expected to release a proposed rule regarding ``new 
source review'' (NSR) by mid-1997. NSR refers to the process 
and standards applicable to sources of pollution which 
constitute either new construction or a modification to an 
existing source resulting in an increase in emissions above a 
de minimis amount. Under NSR, affected sources must obtain 
construction permits, satisfy strict technology standards, and 
obtain ``offsets'' representing emission reductions from other 
sources. The Committee will review both the applicability of 
the new proposal and its effect on emissions.

               implementation of safe drinking water act

                           amendments of 1996

    During the 104th Congress, the Committee produced 
successful legislation (Public Law 104-182) to reauthorize the 
Safe Drinking Water Act. This legislation substantially 
reformed the standard-setting process for new contaminants and 
established a $7.6 billion State Revolving Fund (SRF) to assist 
local water systems in complying with the Act. The Committee 
will review the implementation of the new law by the 
Environmental Protection Agency as well as the operation of the 
SRF.

                          environmental audits

    Many States have passed self-audit privilege laws designed 
to encourage voluntary disclosure and corrective action on the 
part of companies undertaking environmental audits. It is hoped 
that self-audit laws enhance the environment because companies 
are given an incentive to correct potential violations in a 
timely and effective fashion. EPA, for its part, has 
acknowledged the positive role self-audits play in its own 
audit policy, but in certain instances is considering 
withholding delegated authority to States that have passed such 
laws. The Committee will review EPA's policies and practices in 
regard to self-audit privilege.

        state enforcement programs under environmental statutes

    Many Federal environmental statutes have been designed to 
allow for State implementation of environmental programs. EPA 
has provided funding to the States to be used to carry out 
these programs. The Committee believes that a strong State-
Federal partnership, which minimizes duplication and increases 
efficiencies, is a necessary component to effective 
implementation of Federal environmental statutes. Currently, 
EPA is conducting a review of the States' reporting data for 
``significant violators'' under various statutes' enforcement 
programs, including the Clean Air Act. EPA has indicated that 
it intends to conduct similar reviews on the States' 
enforcement programs under other environmental statutes. The 
Committee will monitor EPA's review of the States' performances 
under these environmental statutes and will also review the 
underlying Federal-State partnership under these statutes to 
determine how well the programs are working and if any changes 
are necessary.
                              ----------                              


                        ENERGY AND POWER ISSUES

                     electric utility restructuring

    The Energy Policy Act of 1992 (EPAct) contained provisions 
which enabled wholesale competition in electricity to become a 
reality. Since then, Congress, the States, electric consumers 
and suppliers have begun to explore whether retail competition 
in electricity is feasible and/or desirable. The Committee is 
expected to undertake a comprehensive look at the electric 
power industry and explore the best options for increasing 
competition at the retail level.

                  federal energy regulatory commission

    The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) regulates 
electric utilities, hydropower facilities, and natural gas and 
oil pipelines. The Committee will review how FERC discharges 
these responsibilities, in light of the sweeping changes in the 
electric industry. Some of the specific areas the Committee may 
examine are FERC's implementation of Orders 888 and 889 and 
FERC's merger policy, including its approach to market power. 
The Committee will also examine FERC's hydropower relicensing 
process and natural gas policies.

                 department of energy's budget request

    The Committee will hold hearings on the Department of 
Energy's (DOE's) budget requests for Fiscal Years 1998 and 1999 
and closely examine the requests. The missions of DOE have 
shifted rather dramatically over time. When the Department was 
established, its major mission was promoting energy security. 
At present, the principal DOE missions (in order of importance) 
are environmental management, defense programs, science and 
technology, and energy security. DOE has sought to add new 
missions such as trade promotion and enhancing environmental 
quality. The Committee will examine the budget requests and 
determine whether they are consistent with the priorities of 
the Committee.

       department of energy's office of environmental management

    The Committee has been reviewing the Office of 
Environmental Management's (EM) progress on cleaning up the 
Department's contaminated waste sites. The Committee wants to 
ensure that the Department is cleaning up these sites in the 
most cost-effective and responsible manner. To that end, the 
Committee will focus on the Department's overall cleanup 
program including support costs and program management.
    The Committee is also reviewing EM's management of its 
Office of Science and Technology (OST). The purpose of this 
office is to promote the development of innovative technologies 
for waste cleanup in the EM program that will save money and 
reduce risks. Congress has appropriated $2.6 billion to this 
office since 1990. Given the apparent lack of technology 
deployments and demonstrated cost savings, the Committee is 
concerned that this office is not being properly managed. The 
Committee will continue to review EM's management of this 
office and OST's funding decisions.

             plutonium disposition and stockpile management

    In December 1996, DOE released its plan for excess weapons 
plutonium disposition, which involves a two-track strategy of 
vitrification (mixing plutonium with glass, then disposing as 
high-level radioactive waste) and mixing plutonium with uranium 
to create mixed-oxide fuel (MOX) for use in commercial nuclear 
reactors. After reactor utilization, the MOX fuel assemblies 
would be disposed of as high-level radioactive waste. The 
Committee will closely examine the DOE proposal, including 
examining the technological difficulties associated with the 
vitrification option, the potential difficulties associated 
with MOX fuel fabrication and use in commercial reactors, and 
the relative costs involved in the two-track approach. The 
Committee will also review whether the Department is adequately 
safeguarding these materials.

                      waste isolation pilot plant

    The Committee was instrumental in the passage of 
legislation in 1996 to expedite the opening of the Waste 
Isolation Pilot Plant (WIPP), which will dispose of transuranic 
waste generated as a result of U.S. atomic defense activities. 
The Committee plans to follow up on implementation of these 
amendments, and conduct rigorous oversight of DOE and EPA on 
their efforts and progress to license the WIPP facility and to 
characterize and package waste which is destined for disposal 
at WIPP.

                           tritium production

    DOE announced in 1996 that it intends to use commercial 
nuclear reactors for its production of tritium for defense 
purposes. The Committee held a hearing on this issue in the 
104th Congress, and plans to continue examining the effects 
this mission will have on reactor operations, power generation, 
Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) licensing, and waste 
disposal.

                  regulation of doe nuclear facilities

    DOE nuclear facilities are currently not subject to 
external regulation. An Advisory Committee on External 
Regulation of Department of Energy Nuclear Safety recommended 
that the facilities be subject to external regulation, and 
proposed that either the Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) or 
a restructured Defense Nuclear Facilities Safety Board perform 
this external oversight. DOE selected the option of external 
regulation by the NRC. The Committee will review DOE's proposed 
transition plan toward external regulation, and examine whether 
this plan will improve the regulation of DOE nuclear facilities 
in a timely manner.

                     nuclear regulatory commission

    The mission of the Nuclear Regulatory Commission is to 
ensure adequate protection of the public health and safety 
through regulation of commercial nuclear power plants; nonpower 
research, test, and training reactors; fuel cycle facilities; 
medical, academic, and industrial uses of nuclear materials; 
and the transport, storage, and disposal of nuclear waste. The 
Committee will conduct oversight of how the Commission 
discharges these responsibilities, and whether the Commission 
is an effective regulator of nuclear facilities. To that end, 
the Committee is investigating the shutdown in Connecticut of 
the three nuclear reactors at the Millstone power station site 
and the one reactor at the Haddam Neck power station site. The 
Committee will also consider whether the Commission should be 
granted regulatory authority over DOE nuclear facilities.

                      energy efficiency standards

    The Energy Policy and Conservation Act established energy 
efficiency standards and directed DOE to consider revisions to 
these standards. The primary purpose of the appliance standards 
program is to promote energy efficiency. Concerns have been 
raised about how DOE has developed revised standards, the 
impact of the standards on consumers, their potential anti-
competitive effects, and the impact on manufacturers. The 
Committee will review the revised standards issued by DOE.

                           alternative fuels

    The Committee will continue to monitor implementation of 
the Clean Air Act and Energy Policy Act alternative fuel 
mandates. Hearings will address the cost of the programs, 
regulations being promulgated by the agencies responsible for 
implementing the provisions, the cost-effectiveness of these 
programs in achieving their objectives, and if there are less 
costly alternatives to achieve the same goals.

                         global climate change

    In June 1992, the United States signed the Framework 
Convention on Climate Change (Rio Treaty), which provided for 
developed countries to aim to reduce their greenhouse gas 
emissions to 1990 levels by the year 2000. In March 1995, the 
United States agreed to participate in international 
negotiations to strengthen and extend those commitments beyond 
the year 2000. Those negotiations are expected to be concluded 
in December of 1997. The Committee will closely monitor the 
progress of this agreement to assure that it is realistic and 
achievable and does not harm the trade competitiveness of the 
United States with respect to its developed and developing 
country trading partners.

            strategic petroleum reserve/u.s. energy security

    In the 104th Congress, the sale of approximately 30 million 
barrels of oil from the Strategic Petroleum Reserve (Reserve) 
was authorized in order to meet budget goals. At the same time, 
U.S. dependence on imported crude oil and refined products 
exceeded 50 percent and oil suppliers have steadily reduced the 
number of barrels held in inventory to meet consumer needs. The 
Committee is expected to hold hearings on whether the Reserve 
is still a cost-effective method of assuring U.S. energy 
security and whether other steps are necessary to protect the 
U.S. economy and U.S. consumers from shut-offs in foreign oil 
supplies.

                            contract reform

    The Department of Energy has developed a contract reform 
plan to improve its management of DOE contractors, particularly 
management and operating contractors. Contract reform is 
essential to improving DOE performance, since 90 percent of 
DOE's budget is allocated to its contractors. The Committee 
will examine DOE's contract reform policy, and determine 
whether DOE is adequately implementing contract reform.

             sale or lease of the naval petroleum reserves

    The Naval Petroleum and Oil Shale Reserves are commercial 
oil and gas fields operated by the Federal government that do 
not have any strategic or national security value. In the 104th 
Congress, the sale of the Naval Petroleum Reserve No. 1 (Elk 
Hills, California) was authorized. The Committee will continue 
to monitor the sale process to assure that taxpayers are fully 
compensated for their investments in the Reserve. In addition, 
the Committee will explore whether it makes economic sense to 
sell or lease the remaining Naval Petroleum Reserves (located 
in California and Wyoming) and the Naval Oil Shale Reserves 
(located in Colorado and Utah).

            sale of the united states enrichment corporation

    The United States Enrichment Corporation (USEC) is the 
governmental corporation which oversees all domestic uranium 
enrichment activities. The Committee was instrumental in the 
passage of legislation to privatize USEC in early 1996. To this 
point, however, the Administration has not taken final action 
to approve the sale of the Corporation. The Committee will 
continue to monitor the Administration's efforts in this regard 
to ensure that privatization moves forward and that U.S. 
taxpayers receive an appropriate return on the sale of the 
Corporation.

                            doe assets sales

    DOE has significant stockpiles of precious metals, 
chemicals and industrial gases, scrap metals, base metals, 
fuel, major equipment, and other assets. DOE proposed selling 
some of these assets for $75 million, but the lowest estimates 
suggest that these assets are worth $250 to $300 million. DOE 
has conceded it does not know the value of its assets. The 
Committee will conduct oversight to identify the true value of 
DOE's assets and to ensure that the Department receives market 
value for these assets.
                              ----------                              


                 FINANCE AND HAZARDOUS MATERIALS ISSUES

 implementation of the national securities markets improvement act of 
                                  1996

    The Committee will oversee the implementation of the 
National Securities Markets Improvement Act of 1996. In 
addition, the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) is 
preparing two studies, mandated in the law, on the effects of 
uniformity of State regulation and the lack of uniformity on 
securities issuers and broker-dealers. These studies, together 
with information the Committee receives regarding the actual 
impact of the new law on State securities regulation, will 
provide the Committee with information that can be used as the 
basis for an oversight hearing to ensure the law is being 
implemented to eliminate duplicative State securities 
regulation.

   analysis of capital formation, efficiency, and competition in sec 
                               rulemaking

    Under the National Securities Markets Improvement Act of 
1996, whenever the SEC is engaged in rulemaking pursuant to a 
statutory provision that requires the SEC to consider investor 
protection, the SEC must also consider the rule's impact on 
efficiency, competition, and capital formation. The Committee 
will seek to ensure the SEC is conducting appropriate analyses 
to carry out its obligation under this new provision.

  private securities litigation reform act: state legislative efforts 
                 such as proposition 211 in california

    Proposition 211 would have substantially undermined the 
statutory changes of the Private Securities Litigation Reform 
Act of 1995. The Committee will examine the circumstances 
surrounding 211, and the effect it would have wrought on 
interstate commerce.

                    the small order execution system

    The Small Order Execution System (SOES) is the system set 
up by the National Association of Security Dealers Automated 
Quotations (NASDAQ) in the wake of the 1987 crash to ensure 
that small customers' orders would get filled. SOES provides 
for automatic execution of small customer orders. The SEC 
pressured the NASDAQ to raise the number of shares that could 
be traded via SOES to 1000 per trade. There have been abuses of 
this system that have hurt liquidity for small companies. This 
practice may amount to market manipulation, and the Committee 
will examine the SEC's treatment of the issue.

          preserving derivatives' status as private contracts

    The Financial Accounting Standards Board (FASB), which is 
under the jurisdiction of the SEC and therefore under the 
jurisdiction of the Committee, is considering changes to the 
accounting treatment of derivative transactions. The Committee 
will monitor this proposal to ensure that investors are 
protected and that the utility of derivatives is not 
diminished.

      social security modernization and its effects on the markets

    The Committee has jurisdiction over securities and 
exchanges. In connection with the recent Commission Report on 
financing Social Security in the next century, the Committee 
will examine the effect of the different proposals on the 
financial markets.

                           bank mutual funds

    The Committee will examine the regulation of mutual fund 
sales by banks in light of the General Accounting Office (GAO) 
report indicating some deficiencies in the areas of training of 
bank personnel and unusual fee structures charged by banks. The 
hearing will focus on the role of the Comptroller of the 
Currency in enforcing existing regulations and the adequacy of 
those regulations.

               federal barriers to common sense cleanups

    Since the enactment of the Comprehensive Environmental 
Response, Compensation, and Liability Act (CERCLA, commonly 
known as Superfund) in 1980, the Environmental Protection 
Agency (EPA) has placed 1,387 sites on the National Priorities 
List (NPL). Approximately 130 of these sites have been cleaned 
up and ``de-listed'' over this time. Additionally, according to 
EPA's 1998 budget request, ``[c]onstruction is underway at 
nearly 500 sites with an additional 410 NPL sites being 
`construction complete' as of the end of 1996.'' In addition to 
NPL sites and those in the RCRA corrective action program, 
according to EPA estimates, there may be as many as 500,000 
``brownfields'' sites across the country. ``Brownfields'' are 
abandoned or underutilized former industrial facilities where 
fear of environmental contamination on the part of potential 
developers complicates expansion or redevelopment.
    The Committee will review the implementation of State 
cleanup programs and will investigate whether changes to 
existing Federal laws are necessary to expedite cleanups at 
these sites to ensure the protection of human health and the 
environment.

             risk assessment and characterization practices

    Congress, through the recent Safe Drinking Water Act, 
requires EPA to follow risk assessments based on the best 
available peer-reviewed science and supporting studies 
conducted in accordance with sound and objective scientific 
practices. These same principles have been announced through 
the recent final report of the Risk Assessment and Management 
Commission established under the Clean Air Act. This report 
provides that a good risk management decision ``is based on a 
careful analysis of the weight of scientific evidence that 
supports conclusions about a problem's potential risks to human 
health and the environment.'' The Committee will assess current 
agency risk assessment and characterization practices to 
identify problems and plans for change.

                 resource conservation and recovery act

    EPA is currently considering changes to the definition of 
Solid Waste under the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act 
(RCRA). The Committee will examine what changes EPA is 
considering and determine what effects these changes will have 
on both the regulated community and the public.

                        toxic release inventory

    The Toxic Release Inventory (TRI) is the database in which 
information is collected under section 313 of the Emergency 
Planning and Community Right-to-Know Act (EPCRA) and section 
6607 of the Pollution Prevention Act (PPA). Information on the 
TRI database is available to the public. EPA has noticed its 
intention to expand the TRI to include information on chemical 
use, or materials accounting. Chemical use refers to 
information about the amounts of chemicals coming into a 
facility, amounts transformed into products and wastes, and the 
resulting amounts leaving the facility site. EPA believes that 
such information would be useful to the public. Opponents feel 
that such information is not only unneeded, but costly, and has 
the potential to expose confidential trade secrets. The 
Committee will review EPA's proposal to expand the TRI program.

            national association of insurance commissioners

    The Committee will oversee the Financial Standards 
Accreditation program, and will examine recent efforts by the 
National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC) to 
regulate investment guidelines, company splits, and producer 
database networks. The Committee will also review the role of 
the NAIC in the functional regulation of insurance products 
offered by non-insurance companies and agents, the involvement 
by the NAIC in setting uniform standards for commercial 
insurance transactions, and the implementation of NAIC 
proposals to address insurance fraud. The Committee will also 
oversee NAIC consideration of deregulation for sophisticated 
commercial insurance transactions, allowance of reciprocal 
brokerage licensing, and development of multi-state insurance 
compacts.

        natural disaster insurance and state underwriting pools

    The Committee will assess the development and impact on the 
private market of the State insurance underwriting pools in 
Florida and California, both separately and in conjunction with 
natural disaster insurance legislation.

                            credit insurance

    The Committee will examine concentration in the provision 
of credit insurance by banks. The Committee will examine 
whether the applicable anti-tying rules are being enforced.
                              ----------                              


       TELECOMMUNICATIONS, TRADE, AND CONSUMER PROTECTION ISSUES

          implementation of the telecommunications act of 1996

    On February 8, 1996, the Telecommunications Act of 1996 was 
enacted into law. The Act fundamentally changes the way the 
telecommunications industry will be regulated. In particular, 
the Act swept away more than 60 years of outdated laws and 
regulations and replaced them with pro-competitive provisions. 
Under the Act, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) is 
required to conduct approximately 80 rulemakings on major 
issues such as interconnection, universal service, Bell 
Operating Company entry into the long distance market, 
accounting and non-accounting safeguards, cable reform, open 
video systems, and regulatory reform. A series of hearings will 
review whether the FCC's implementation of the Act meets the 
goals specified by Congress.

                   federal communications commission

    Congress created the Federal Communications Commission 
(FCC) in 1934 for the purpose of regulating interstate and 
foreign communication by wire and radio. Upon the successful 
implementation of the Telecommunications Act of 1996, the need 
for regulation of the telecommunications industry diminishes. 
The Committee will evaluate the need for restructuring the FCC 
once competition flourishes in each telecommunications market.

                            cellular privacy

    Several provisions of the Communications Act of 1934, as 
amended (the Act), protect the rights of individuals from 
having their telephone conversations, both wireline and 
wireless, monitored without their permission. The Act also 
prohibits the use of certain devices that enable a conversation 
to be unlawfully intercepted. The Committee will examine 
whether the current laws are adequately protecting consumers 
and whether the Federal Communications Commission is properly 
enforcing the Act and its rules implementing the Act.

                          spectrum management

    There have been several laws passed in recent years that 
involve the use of the radio spectrum. For example, in 1993, 
Congress enacted the Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act (OBRA) 
authorizing the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) to 
auction the right to use portions of the radio spectrum. More 
recently, as part of the Telecommunications Act of 1996 (the 
Act), Congress permitted the FCC to issue additional licenses 
for use of the radio spectrum for advanced television services, 
but also required that recipients of the additional license 
surrender either the additional license or the original license 
for reallocation or reassignment. A number of complex issues 
are involved with the successful implementation of the OBRA and 
the Act, including considering the needs of the public safety 
community, broadcasters, commercial users, and the Federal 
government. The Committee will conduct a series of hearings on 
spectrum management issues, including one to help ensure that 
expediting new services to the marketplace is a primary goal in 
management of commercial spectrum.

                  corporation for public broadcasting

    Congress created the Corporation for Public Broadcasting 
(CPB) in the Public Broadcasting Act of 1967. Historically, the 
Committee has been charged with monitoring the activities of 
the CPB and authorizing appropriations. The Committee will 
investigate to what extent Federal funding is necessary for the 
continued survival of CPB.

       national telecommunications and information administration

    Congress created the National Telecommunications and 
Information Administration (NTIA) in 1978 to perform a number 
of functions including: advising the President on 
telecommunications policy; developing policies for 
international communications conferences; managing Federal use 
of the radio frequency spectrum; and awarding financial grants 
to communications companies that are in need of assistance. The 
Committee will examine NTIA's execution of these functions.

                  telecommunications trade agreements

    The United States is a party to a number of bilateral and 
multilateral trade agreements. Specifically, the U.S. has 
bilateral telecommunications agreements with Japan, Korea and 
Taiwan, and plurilateral agreements with Canada and Mexico 
through NAFTA. Multilateral negotiations for a World Trade 
Organization agreement on basic telecommunications services are 
scheduled to conclude by February 15, 1997, and to be effective 
January 1998. The Committee will oversee any ongoing 
negotiations and the implementation of telecommunications trade 
agreements.

          automobile safety--airbags and other safety devices

    Since the last reauthorization of the National Highway 
Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) in 1991, it is 
increasingly apparent that the perceived safety of automobiles 
is one of the key criteria consumers use when making automobile 
purchasing decisions. With this fact in mind, the Committee 
will continue its oversight of NHTSA's efforts to refine its 
existing motor vehicle safety standards and promulgate new 
ones. The Committee will pay particular attention to the recent 
developments surrounding airbags and will closely examine the 
appropriateness of the legislative mandate for airbags.

             automobile safety--nhtsa defect investigations

    With increasing public focus on automobile safety, NHTSA's 
existing defect investigations process has taken on increased 
importance. However, serious questions persist about the 
fairness and due process accorded those who are the targets of 
these investigations. Sometimes, a NHTSA defect investigation 
can result in a ``trial-by-press-release'' whereby an 
automobile manufacturer is forced into recalling a vehicle 
through negative press coverage before there is conclusive 
evidence that a defect exists. The Committee will closely 
examine the process used by NHTSA to conduct these 
investigations in an effort to see if improvements can be made 
that will increase fairness to those who are targets of these 
investigations without compromising safety.

        automobile safety--the national crash assessment program

    In its Fiscal Year 1998 budget request, NHTSA requested a 
substantial increase in funding for its National Crash 
Assessment Program (NCAP), a program where the government 
evaluates the crash worthiness of various automobiles and light 
trucks. The Committee will examine whether this expansion of 
the program is warranted and whether this function could be 
better handled by private-sector organizations which already 
conduct similar kinds of testing.

                    american automobile labeling act

    The American Automobile Labeling Act (AALA), which was 
enacted in 1993, requires automobile manufacturers to list 
domestic content on automobile stickers. The Committee will 
examine the costs, benefits, and unforeseen consequences of 
this legislation to determine whether significant costs have 
been passed on to consumers for little apparent benefit.

                    consumer protection enforcement

    The Committee will continue its oversight of the Federal 
Trade Commission (FTC) and its effort to protect consumers 
against unfair or deceptive trade practices. The Committee will 
pay particular attention to the efforts to enforce the 
Telemarketing Fraud and Consumer Protection Act of 1993 and the 
FTC's efforts to prevent consumer fraud in an increasingly 
global environment.

                 ``made in america'' labeling standards

    In our increasingly global marketplace, many feel that the 
current FTC standard for labeling a product as ``Made in 
America'' or its equivalent--100 percent or nearly 100 percent 
domestic content--is inappropriate. During 1995 and 1996, the 
FTC undertook an extensive effort to examine this issue, 
including public workshops and surveys. The FTC staff is 
scheduled to make a recommendation to the Commission regarding 
revisions, if any, to the existing enforcement guidelines on 
``Made in America'' claims. The Committee will continue to 
monitor this process.

                                 trade

    The Committee will examine the implementation of the North 
American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), as well as its potential 
expansion to Chile and the resulting effects on reducing 
bilateral non-tariff trade barriers. The Committee will also 
continue its ongoing oversight over trade related issues 
connected to insurance and other financial services, consumer 
protection standards, energy issues, drug patent issues, etc.

           effectiveness of federal export promotion programs

     Oversight activities during the 104th Congress revealed 
that trade claims made by the Department of Energy were 
ambiguous, and that some claims of American job creation 
resulting from alleged contracts were exaggerated. The 
Committee received allegations of double counting of projects 
claimed by competing Federal agencies, and allegations that 
trade missions conducted by various agencies were not well-
coordinated. In the last Congress, the Committee moved to 
consolidate Federal export promotion programs into one Federal 
agency in order to achieve managerial and strategic 
efficiencies. This Committee will review the effectiveness of 
the inter-agency Trade Promotion Coordinating Committee and its 
constituent programs.

                   consumer product safety commission

    The Consumer Product Safety Commission's (CPSC's) 
authorization has expired, and the Committee will be continuing 
its oversight of the CPSC's activities, both separately and in 
the context of reauthorization. Potential areas of 
investigation by the Committee include a review of Commission 
officials' political activities, changes in the CPSC's press 
policies, lack of the use of cost-benefit analysis in the 
agencies' resource allocation, and the appropriate role of the 
agency and its Commissioners in allegedly issuing press 
statements and threatening the use of adverse publicity to 
pressure product sellers into ``voluntary'' settlements.

                                tourism

    The Committee will hold oversight hearings on the newly 
created United States National Tourism Organization (USNTO) to 
encourage the timely evolution of USNTO's management structure 
and fundraising and promotion goals.

                department of commerce management issues

    During the 104th Congress, the Committee began 
investigating whether Department of Commerce officials used 
their positions to facilitate political contributions or to 
engage in improper political activities. During the 104th 
Congress, the Committee also began an investigation into the 
Department's Minority Business Development Agency (MBDA) award 
of a cooperative agreement to a company to operate a major 
minority business development center in Los Angeles, 
California. In the course of that investigation, the Committee 
began reviewing MBDA's award of other cooperative agreements 
and other grants. The Committee will continue to investigate 
these matters.
                              ----------                              


                              OTHER ISSUES

                 government performance and results act

    Under the Government Performance and Results Act (GPRA), 
all agencies with budgets in excess of $20 million are required 
to develop, no later than by the end of Fiscal Year 1997, 
strategic plans that cover a period of at least 5 years and 
include the agency's mission statement; identify the agency's 
long-term strategic goals; and describe how the agency intends 
to achieve those goals through its activities and through its 
human, capital, information, and other resources. The Committee 
will review all the plans of agencies that are within this 
Committee's jurisdiction.

               systems of accounting for regulatory costs

    Many Federal agencies appear to have no management tools to 
assess the overall cost impact of regulatory programs on the 
economy or identify program elements which are more costly than 
beneficial. Recent provisions in the Omnibus Appropriations 
legislation require Federal agencies to provide estimates of 
cumulative regulatory program costs and benefits. The Committee 
will evaluate, for programs within the Committee's 
jurisdiction, both existing management tools for assessing 
regulatory costs and plans for compliance with recent 
regulatory accounting requirements.
                                 PART B

  Implementation of the Committee on Commerce Oversight Plan for the 
                             105th Congress

                              ----------                              


                     HEALTH AND ENVIRONMENT ISSUES

             medicare and medicaid: waste, fraud, and abuse

    In the 104th Congress, the Committee on Commerce held two 
hearings on Medicare waste, fraud and abuse, which focused on 
the vulnerabilities of the Medicare Program. In the 105th 
Congress, the Committee continued its efforts to identify 
instances of and opportunities for waste, fraud, and abuse in 
the Medicare Program, and to craft legislative language to 
address the problems identified.
    During its consideration of legislation to reform the 
Medicare Program, the Committee adopted legislative language to 
address waste, fraud, and abuse. This language was incorporated 
into Title IV of H.R. 2015, the Balanced Budget Act of 1997, as 
introduced in the House and as passed by the House, and is 
included in Title IV of Public Law 105-33, the Balanced Budget 
Act of 1997.
    In addition, on September 29, 1997, the Subcommittee on 
Oversight and Investigations held an oversight hearing on 
Medicare Waste, Fraud, and Abuse. The hearing focused on the 
Health Care Financing Administration's (HCFA's) efforts to 
fight Medicare waste, fraud and abuse. Specifically, the 
Subcommittee examined HCFA's efforts to enhance Medicare's pre-
payment detection capabilities with Commercial Off-the-Shelf 
(COTS) software, and its efforts to develop an integrated 
Medicare Transaction System (MTS), an automated claims 
processing system that would consolidate HCFA's eight different 
automated information systems into a single Medicare claims 
system.
    On October 29, 1997, the Subcommittee on Oversight and 
Investigations held a hearing on Home Health Care fraud and 
HCFA's efforts to implement the anti-fraud provisions of the 
Balanced Budget Act (BBA) as they relate to home health care. 
The Subcommittee heard from witnesses from the General 
Accounting Office (GAO), HCFA, the Department of Health and 
Human Services Office of the Inspector General (HHS OIG), the 
Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), as well as private 
entities. Home health has been one of the fastest growing 
components of today's Medicare program. Home health was 
originated as an alternative to more costly and lengthy 
hospital stays, and has been part of Medicare since Medicare's 
inception in 1965. As home health expenditures have rapidly 
increased, so have the problems with waste, fraud, and abuse. 
In July, the HHS Office of Inspector General released two 
reports concerning home health fraud. In its first report, the 
OIG reported that nearly 40 percent of home health care 
services provided under the Medicare program were unjustified 
because they did not meet Medicare reimbursement requirements. 
In the second report, the OIG found that 1 out of every 4 
Medicare-certified home health agencies were ``problem'' 
providers and, while not inherently fraudulent, had abused 
Medicare funds. Home health agencies, as a source of waste in 
the Medicare program, will remain a major focus of the 
Committee's oversight activities.
    On March 2, 1998, in Colleyville, Texas, the Subcommittee 
on Oversight and Investigations held a hearing on Medicare 
waste, fraud and abuse. The purpose of the hearing was to gain 
a regional perspective on the problems that are currently 
plaguing the Medicare system from those who fight Medicare 
waste on a daily basis, as well as to hear concerns from 
representatives of the health care industry. The hearing 
presented specific real-world examples of waste, fraud, and 
abuse and how HCFA is responding. The Subcommittee intends to 
maintain the communication links established through this 
hearing between those involved with combating Medicare waste at 
the local level and the Members in Congress.
    On Thursday, March 19, 1998, the Subcommittee on Oversight 
and Investigations held a hearing on Medicare home health. 
Specifically, the Subcommittee heard from the General 
Accounting Office's (GAO's) Office of Special Investigations 
(OSI) regarding its findings of alleged Medicare improprieties 
by home health care provider Mid-Delta Home Health (now known 
as Mid-Delta Health Systems, Inc.) of Belzoni, Mississippi, and 
affiliated companies. GAO questioned the propriety of certain 
payroll costs and other costs that Mid-Delta claimed for 
Medicare reimbursement. After this hearing and a subsequent 
hearing in which GAO presented its official findings, Chairmen 
Bliley and Barton, along with Ranking Members Dingell and 
Klink, wrote to the Attorney General referring GAO's report for 
appropriate action.
    As a result of this hearing and a separate Subcommittee on 
Oversight and Investigations hearing on May 19, 1998, on COTS, 
HCFA finally undertook a pilot program to test this technology, 
after resisting for years recommendations by the General 
Accounting Office to implement a software technology that could 
potentially save hundreds of millions of dollars annually in 
improper Medicare payments. The Committee's vigorous oversight 
efforts ensured that HCFA conducted this pilot program testing 
in a fair manner.
    On September 30, 1998, HCFA signed a contract with HBOC to 
apply their commercial-off-the-shelf software procedure to 
process edits to Medicare claims. The Committee intends to 
closely monitor HCFA's efforts to implement this money saving 
software.
    On October 5, 1998, the Subcommittee on Oversight and 
Investigations held a hearing that focused on the widespread 
abuse of Medicare's Partial Hospitalization Program (PHP) 
benefits by Community Mental Health Centers (CMHCs). The 
hearing focused on the adequacy of the Health Care Financing 
Administration's (HCFA's) efforts to ensure that CMHCs comply 
with statutory and regulatory guidelines for providing partial 
hospitalization services under Medicare in light of 
unexpectedly rapid growth in Medicare partial hospitalization 
payments coupled with evidence of widespread fraud and abuse of 
the PHP program by CMHCs. The HHS Inspector General issued a 
report at the hearing, which found that more than 90 percent of 
the providers and services reviewed were ineligible for 
Medicare funding--the worst rates of noncompliance in Medicare 
history. The hearing also highlighted concerns regarding the 
adequacy of HCFA's proposed action plan to prevent further 
abuse of the Partial Hospitalization Program benefits by 
providers, in particular, the Inspector General indicated that 
HHS needs to conduct an evaluation of PHP programs run by 
hospitals.

                                medicaid

    In the 105th Congress, the Committee continued its review 
of the Medicaid Program. This effort included a focus upon the 
Administration's waiver process, and the merits of State 
flexibility versus accountability for Federal dollars spent and 
beneficiary protection.
    On March 11, 1997, the Subcommittee on Health and 
Environment held an oversight hearing on Medicaid Reform: The 
Governors' View. The hearing examined The Governors' Agenda for 
the 105th Congress, which was unanimously adopted by the 
National Governors' Association (NGA). Among other provisions, 
the Agenda expressed the NGA's recommendations for reforming 
the Medicaid Program. Other witnesses at the hearing discussed 
the need for Federal protections to ensure Medicaid funds were 
being used for their statutory purpose and not diverted to 
other programs.
    On the basis of information reviewed by the Committee, and 
pursuant to reconciliation instructions, legislation addressing 
the Medicaid program was adopted by the Committee and 
incorporated into Title III of H.R. 2015, the Balanced Budget 
Act of 1997, as introduced in the House and as passed by the 
House, and is included in Title IV of Public Law 105-33, the 
Balanced Budget Act of 1997.

                health care service delivery mechanisms

    The Committee reviewed the nature, scope, and effectiveness 
of various health care service delivery mechanisms, including 
fee-for-service, Health Maintenance Organizations (HMOs), and 
Provider Service Organizations (PSOs). The Committee's review 
focused in particular upon the performance of these mechanisms 
in terms of quality, cost, and satisfaction. The findings from 
this effort were applied in the development of legislation 
pertaining to the quality, affordability, and accessibility of 
health coverage in the current market.

         implementation of the health insurance portability act

    During the course of the 105th Congress, the Committee 
closely monitored the Administration's implementation of the 
Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996 
(Public Law 104-191). This Act reformed the nation's health 
insurance market by removing preexisting condition 
restrictions, eliminating ``job lock,'' establishing tough 
anti-fraud and abuse measures, achieving greater tax fairness, 
and creating tax-favored Medical Savings Accounts.
    The Committee's review focused specifically on the 
promulgation of regulations issued pursuant to the Act. 
Committee staff met with representatives of the Department of 
Health and Human Services and closely reviewed the regulations 
and other actions taken by the Department.

           implementation of the food quality protection act

    In keeping with the Committee's integral role in developing 
the Food Quality Protection Act of 1996 (Public Law 104-170), 
the Committee on Commerce played an active role in monitoring 
its implementation. Committee staff conducted frequent meetings 
with agency representatives; reviewed timetables for action, 
letters, and other mechanisms communicating agency policy; and 
provided feedback to ensure complete accordance with the Act's 
statutory language and intent. In addition, the Committee 
addressed an unintended consequence that resulted from the 
Act's transfer of jurisdiction of antimicrobial substances from 
the Food and Drug Administration to the Environmental 
Protection Agency. The Antimicrobial Regulation Technical 
Corrections Act of 1998 (Public Law 105-324) was developed by 
the Committee and enacted to correct this error.

                        program reauthorizations

    As part of its consideration of the reauthorization of 
programs in the Public Health Service Act and the Substance 
Abuse and Mental Health Services Act, the Committee held 
hearings and developed legislation which was enacted into law 
to extend and improve many of these programs.
Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Act
    On March 18, 1997, the Subcommittee on Health and 
Environment held an oversight hearing on the reauthorization of 
the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration 
(SAMHSA). SAMHSA was created in 1992 to consolidate the Federal 
government's research and delivery of substance abuse 
prevention and treatment services, and mental health services. 
With respect to substance abuse and mental illnesses, SAMHSA 
supports prevention and early intervention activities; 
develops, identifies, evaluates, and disseminates policies and 
service delivery systems which have been shown to have the best 
outcomes; and attempts to improve access to needed services.
Mammography Quality Standards Act
    The Subcommittee on Health and Environment held a hearing 
on Friday, May 8, 1998, on the Reauthorization of the 
Mammography Quality Standards Act. This hearing led to the 
enactment of the Mammography Quality Standards Reauthorization 
Act of 1998 (Public Law 105-248), which reauthorizes programs 
for inspection and certification of mammography facilities. The 
law also provides for direct patient notification of all 
mammography examinations, requiring that ``a summary of the 
written report shall be provided to every patient in terms 
easily understood by a lay person;'' and permits the Food and 
Drug Administration (FDA) to conduct a limited demonstration 
project to determine the feasibility of inspecting high-
performing mammography facilities on a less than annual basis.
Bone Marrow Donation and Transplantation
    More than 30,000 children and adults in the U.S. are 
diagnosed each year with leukemia, aplastic anemia, or other 
life-threatening diseases. For many, the only hope for survival 
is a marrow transplant. The National Marrow Donor Program was 
designed to coordinate the national matching of allogeneic 
unrelated donors and recipients. Under the Public Health 
Service Act, the program is charged with establishing a 
national registry of voluntary bone marrow donors.
    On April 23, 1998, the Subcommittee on Health and 
Environment held a joint hearing with the Senate Labor and 
Human Resources Committee Subcommittee on Public Health and 
Safety on ``The Gift of Life: Increasing Bone Marrow Donation 
and Transplantation.'' As a result of information received at 
this hearing, the National Bone Marrow Registry Reauthorization 
Act of 1998 was enacted into law on July 16, 1998 (Public Law 
105-196).
Women's Health Research and Prevention
    On March 26, 1998, the Subcommittee on Health and 
Environment held an oversight hearing on New Developments in 
Medical Research: the National Institutes of Health and Patient 
Groups, which included a focus on diseases that 
disproportionately affect women. On July 20, 1998, the 
Subcommittee on Health and Environment held a hearing entitled 
The State of Cancer Research, which focused on many disorders 
facing women, including breast and cervical cancer.
    As a result of these hearings, the Committee on Commerce 
moved to enact the Women's Health Research and Prevention 
Amendments of 1998 (Public Law 105-340) to revise and extend 
certain programs with respect to women's health research and 
prevention activities at the National Institutes of Health and 
the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
Health Professions Training Programs
    The Committee on Commerce participated in the development 
and passage of the Health Professions Education Partnerships 
Act of 1998 (Public Law 105-392), which reauthorizes and 
consolidates 44 different Federal health professions training 
programs authorized under Title VII and Title VIII of the 
Public Health Service Act. These 44 programs are consolidated 
into seven general and flexible categories of authorities which 
are designed to train health practitioners most inclined to 
enter practice in rural and other medically underserved areas. 
The seven general authorities provide support for: the training 
of under represented minority and disadvantaged health 
professions students; the training of primary care and dental 
providers; the establishment and operation of 
interdisciplinary, community-based training activities; health 
professions workforce information and analysis; public health 
workforce development; nursing education; and student financial 
assistance.

            food and drug administration's approval process

    The Committee on Commerce continued efforts begun in the 
104th Congress to improve the Food and Drug Administration's 
(FDA's) review of applications for approval of new drugs, 
biologics, medical devices, and food additives. As part of its 
review, the Subcommittee on Health and Environment held two 
hearings: one on April 23, 1997, on Reauthorization of the 
Prescription Drug User Fee Act and FDA Reform, and one on April 
30, 1997, on Medical Devices: Technological Innovation and 
Patient/Provider Perspectives.
    These hearings laid the foundation for the eventual passage 
of the Food and Drug Administration Modernization Act of 1997 
(Modernization Act) (Public Law 105-115). The Modernization Act 
addresses, among other things, the approval of prescription 
drugs, medical devices, and food additives.

              fda management issues and reform initiatives

    In the 105th Congress, the Committee on Commerce closely 
monitored the operation and management of the Food and Drug 
Administration (FDA).
    On January 3, 1997, January 31, 1997, and February 13, 
1997, the Subcommittee on Oversight and Investigations sent 
letters to the FDA requesting documents related to the 
management of the Office of the Commissioner. These requests 
sought a list of all employees and the budget for the Office of 
Commissioner and any reorganizations and information on how the 
different Deputy Commissioner positions were created and line 
of succession. The FDA provided the documents in installments 
during February and March of 1997.
    On March 13, 1997, as part of an examination of the 
management and performance of the FDA, the Subcommittee on 
Oversight and Investigations requested a computer printout 
listing of FDA positions and a complete set of FDA's official 
organizational charts.
    On June 4, 1997, the Subcommittee on Oversight and 
Investigations sent letters to six FDA contractors requesting 
information and documents related to procurement actions and 
modifications with the FDA. The contractors provided the 
information and documents in June and July of 1997.
    In addition, beginning April 30, 1997, the Subcommittee on 
Oversight and Investigations sent ten letters to FDA seeking 
information and documents about certain matters primarily 
related to the information management and procurement systems 
at the FDA's Center for Biologics Evaluation and Research 
(CBER) as well as the management of the FDA. The FDA provided 
the requested materials. The Committee staff reviewed the 
documents, conducted interviews, and produced a preliminary 
draft report of its findings.
    On April 1, 1998, the Subcommittee on Oversight and 
Investigations held a hearing on management issues; procurement 
and inventory control procedures at the Food and Drug 
Administration, especially those at the FDA's Center for 
Biologics Evaluation and Research; and the pace and directions 
of corrective actions taken or to be taken. The hearing 
demonstrated that FDA had inadequate internal controls over FDA 
employee use of government credit cards, inadequate internal 
controls over receiving equipment, inadequate internal controls 
over inventory, insufficient documentation of lost or stolen 
equipment, weak controls over disposal of equipment, and 
inaccurate procurement records. An FDA employee witness 
testified that some of the corrective actions undertaken by FDA 
would not have occurred without the Subcommittee's 
investigation.
    As a result of the hearing, the Subcommittee on Oversight 
and Investigations requested the General Accounting Office to 
conduct a study related to FDA's accountability of property, 
plant, and equipment, and the Committee staff prepared a report 
on FDA management concerns, entitled Without Reasonable 
Assurance: Financial and Property Management Concerns at the 
Food and Drug Administration (Commerce Committee Print 105-W).

                     prescription drug user fee act

    In preparation for action on the reauthorization of the 
Prescription Drug User Fee Act, the Subcommittee on Health and 
Environment held a hearing on April 23, 1997, on the 
Reauthorization of the Prescription Drug User Fee Act and FDA 
Reform. This hearing laid the foundation for the eventual 
passage of the Food and Drug Administration Modernization Act 
of 1997 (Modernization Act) (Public Law 105-115). The 
Modernization Act reauthorizes the Prescription Drug User Fee 
Act (PDUFA) for five years and amends the Federal Food, Drug, 
and Cosmetic Act (FFDCA) to change several of the Food and Drug 
Administration's current policies and practices regarding 
product review and approval. The law also includes provisions 
to encourage pharmaceutical research and accelerate the 
availability of new products.
    In addition to the passage of legislation to reauthorize 
PDUFA, the Committee closely monitored the FDA's handling of 
PDUFA funds. The Subcommittee on Oversight and Investigations 
sent a series of letters to the FDA requesting: (1) information 
and documents to obtain an accounting of FDA's use of PDUFA 
funds; (2) information on how much reviewer time was spent on 
each application in the review process in Fiscal Year 1996; (3) 
information and documents with respect to the putting aside of 
some PDUFA funds for ``rainy day funds''; and (4) information 
and documents concerning FDA's implementation of PDUFA.

                fda regulation of food and food products

    The Committee on Commerce continued efforts begun in the 
104th Congress to improve the Food and Drug Administration's 
(FDA's) regulation of food and food products. In the 105th 
Congress, the Committee developed legislation which was enacted 
into law as the Food and Drug Administration Modernization Act 
of 1997 (Modernization Act) (Public Law 105-115). The 
Modernization Act streamlines regulatory requirements for the 
labeling of food products; reduces decision making times; 
establishes a notification process for the regulation of 
components of food packaging, known as food contact substances; 
enhances consumer knowledge of the health benefits of foods and 
food treatments; and improves the processes by which 
information can be communicated to consumers that will enable 
them to adopt more healthful diets.
    In addition to the passage of the Modernization Act, the 
Committee closely monitored the FDA's regulation of food 
imports. Throughout the 105th Congress, the Subcommittee on 
Oversight and Investigations sent a series of letters to the 
FDA requesting information about the adequacy of FDA's food 
import inspections and the number of import food entries.

          consumer access to home testing services and devices

    In the 105th Congress, the Committee continued the 
oversight and investigation of consumer access to home testing 
services and devices begun in the 104th Congress.
    On January 24, 1997, the Subcommittee on Oversight and 
Investigations requested information and documents on the FDA's 
approval of the first over-the-counter drug testing system.
    On February 6, 1997, the Subcommittee on Oversight and 
Investigations held a hearing on FDA's announced proposed 
policy on home collection testing systems for drugs of abuse. 
The Subcommittee received testimony from the FDA's Deputy 
Commissioner for Policy. Under the proposed new policy, the FDA 
would allow some urine-based home collection testing systems 
for drugs of abuse to be sold to parents without a doctor's 
prescription. This was a partial reversal of FDA's position at 
the Subcommittee's oversight hearing on September 26, 1996, 
where the agency maintained that the marketing to parents of 
urine cups and hair envelopes for drug testing purposes 
required a premarket application. At that time, the FDA 
insisted that such common items needed to be regulated as 
sternly as pacemakers or heart valves that are implanted in the 
human body. That position was based on FDA's concerns about 
such societal and ethical factors as ``family discord'' in 
assessing parents' ability to handle the results of a drug 
test.
    As a follow-up to the hearing, on April 10, 1997, the 
Subcommittee on Oversight and Investigations sent a letter to 
the Secretary of the Department of Health and Human Services 
concerning the testimony of FDA's Deputy Commissioner/Senior 
Advisor.
    In July 1998, the FDA issued a final rule on home testing 
services and devices based on the policy announced at the 
February 6, 1997, hearing.

                 allegations of fda abuses of authority

    In the 104th Congress, the Committee began an investigation 
of allegations of Food and Drug Administration (FDA) abuses of 
authority, which focused, in general, on FDA operations and 
procedures, and, in particular, on allegations of abuses of 
power brought forward by witnesses on behalf of entities that 
are currently or possibly subject to FDA regulation.
    The Committee continued to closely review FDA operations in 
the 105th Congress and to follow up on allegations made in the 
104th Congress. In one instance, the Committee's review of 
allegations made by Myo-tronics, Inc., a dental device 
manufacturing company, led to a report by the Office of 
Inspector General (OIG) that certain FDA employees had acted 
improperly in the classification of certain devices made by 
that company. In response to the OIG report, the FDA took 
disciplinary action against FDA employees, accepted the 
resignation or non-renewal of certain advisory panelists, 
undertook a formal review of its advisory panel meeting 
procedures, conducted an independent review of the Myo-tronics 
labeling claims, and reconvened the advisory panel to reexamine 
the issue of dental muscle monitor classification.
    The Committee will continue to monitor allegations of 
abuses of FDA authority in the 106th Congress.

                          foreign inspections

    On February 25, 1997, as part of an investigation of the 
Food and Drug Administration's (FDA's) foreign inspection 
program, the Subcommittee on Oversight and Investigations 
requested information concerning reports that a foreign drug 
manufacturer may have submitted fraudulent information to the 
FDA about bulk drug ingredients imported to the United States.
    On May 22, 1997, the Subcommittee requested information 
from a cross-section of pharmaceutical companies about 
pharmaceutical bulk manufacturing plants in mainland China. The 
companies responded and provided the information.
    On March 17, 1998, in response to a request from the 
Subcommittee on Oversight and Investigations to examine FDA's 
efforts to correct problems in the foreign drug inspection 
program identified in earlier FDA evaluations, the General 
Accounting Office (GAO) issued a report, entitled Food and Drug 
Administration: Improvements Needed in the Foreign Drug 
Inspection Program. The GAO reported that: (1) the FDA conducts 
few routine pharmaceutical inspections overseas; (2) inspectors 
frequently fail to file reports in a timely manner; (3) senior 
FDA officials frequently overturn recommended enforcement 
actions; and (4) enforceable actions imposed by the agency 
frequently lack follow-up to correct identified deficiencies.
    The Committee will continue to review this issue in the 
106th Congress.

                 regulation of the practice of medicine

    In the 105th Congress, the Committee continued to examine 
whether the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) was taking 
regulatory actions which exceeded its charter to regulate 
drugs, biologics, and devices, and which intruded on the 
practice of medicine and the availability of medical 
information. For example, on November 12, 1996, the 
Subcommittee on Oversight and Investigations requested 
documents and information regarding FDA proposals to regulate 
software that helps physicians diagnose ailments, sometimes 
called ``expert systems.'' The FDA provided the information and 
documents on January 9, 1997, and the Subcommittee is carefully 
reviewing these FDA proposals.
    The Committee will continue to review this issue, and other 
instances, in the 106th Congress.

            national institutes of health research integrity

    On September 30, 1997, the Subcommittee on Health and 
Environment held an oversight hearing to ensure the integrity 
of the research programs at the National Institutes of Health 
(NIH), the primary agency of the Federal government charged 
with the conduct and support of biomedical and behavioral 
research. On March 26, 1998, the Subcommittee on Health and 
Environment held an oversight hearing on New Developments in 
Medical Research: NIH and Patient Groups, which raised the 
question of proper priority-setting among various research 
opportunities at NIH. On July 20, 1998, the Subcommittee on 
Health and Environment held a hearing on The State of Cancer 
Research, which also served to monitor the integrity of the 
research programs at NIH through the testimony of prominent 
researchers from throughout the country.

                    clean air act amendments of 1990

    During the 105th Congress, the Subcommittee on Health and 
Environment and the Subcommittee on Oversight and 
Investigations held a combined total of ten oversight hearings 
on the implementation and enforcement of the Clean Air Act and 
the 1990 Clean Air Act Amendments. These hearings followed a 
series of eleven oversight hearings conducted by the two 
Subcommittees regarding implementation of the Clean Air Act 
during the 104th Congress.
    In 1997, six hearings were held jointly by the Subcommittee 
on Health and Environment and the Subcommittee on Oversight and 
Investigations on the promulgation and implementation of new 
National Ambient Air Quality Standards (NAAQS) for ozone and 
fine particulate matter (PM2.5). As part of this extensive 
review, the Subcommittees made various written inquiries and 
requests for records from the Environmental Protection Agency 
(EPA) and other Federal departments and instrumentalities. Due 
to the related nature of the subject matter, this series of 
hearings is described in a separate section below, entitled 
National Ambient Air Quality Standards.
    In addition, the Subcommittee on Health and Environment 
held a hearing on May 6, 1998, to review an Advance Notice of 
Proposed Rulemaking (ANPR) published in the Federal Register by 
the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to remove the essential 
use status of chlorofluorocarbon-based (CFC-based) metered-dose 
inhalers (MDIs). The ANPR was developed in response to 
Decisions agreed to the Parties to the Montreal Protocol, the 
international treaty which provides for the phaseout of ozone-
depleting substances. Title VI of the Clean Air Act provides 
authority for the Environmental Protection Agency to implement 
the Montreal Protocol.
    The Subcommittee on Health and Environment also held a 
hearing on July 30, 1997, concerning the implementation of 
Title VI of the 1990 Clean Air Act Amendments and Plans for the 
Ninth Meeting of the Parties to the Montreal Protocol. This 
hearing focused on a General Accounting Office (GAO) report 
requested by the Committee on Commerce to review the operation 
of the Multilateral Fund of the Montreal Protocol. Through 
1997, the United States contributed a total of $290 million to 
the Fund. The GAO report determined that the United States 
could save between $2 million to $3 million per year by 
changing the form of its payments to the Fund. In addition, the 
hearing focused on the differential in phaseout schedules 
applicable to methyl bromide under the Montreal Protocol and 
the Clean Air Act, the FDA ANPR to eliminate essential use 
exemptions for CFC-based MDIs, the differential in commitments 
between Article 2 and Article 5 Parties to the Montreal 
Protocol, and the lack of compliance data necessary to 
determine whether Parties have met their commitment to phase 
out ozone depleting substances.
    The Subcommittee on Health and Environment additionally 
held hearings on November 17, 1997, and April 22, 1998. The 
November 17, 1997, hearing was held in San Diego, California, 
to examine transborder air pollution between the United States 
and Mexico and the impact of commuter vehicles in border 
regions. The Subcommittee also conducted a site visit to the 
San Ysidro border crossing prior to the hearing. The April 22, 
1998, hearing reviewed the implementation of the Federal 
reformulated gasoline program in California and the requirement 
that reformulated gasoline contain 2 percent oxygenate, by 
weight.
    In addition to the hearings identified above, the 
Subcommittee on Oversight and Investigations continued its 
review of the implementation of the Clean Air Act Amendments of 
1990 and the regulation of Hazardous Air Pollutants (HAPs) 
under Title III, Clean Air Act Sec. 112(d). The Subcommittee 
focused on the Clean Air Act Maximum Achievable Control 
Technology (MACT) rulemaking for hazardous waste combustors 
(HWCs).
    The Committee also began a review of EPA's Risk Management 
Program Rule. Among other things, that rule requires 
approximately 66,000 facilities nationwide to send EPA a ``Risk 
Management Plan'' (RMP) containing detailed identification of 
potential accidental chemical release points and an estimate of 
the damage and injuries that could result from an absolute 
worst-case scenario--otherwise known as offsite consequence 
analysis (OCA) data.
    The Committee expressed concern that the information 
contained in each facility's RMP would make it easier to design 
a terrorist attack against that or a similar facility and to 
maximize the impact of such an attack. Members of the Committee 
on Commerce worked with Members of the House and Senate 
Appropriations Committees to insert language into the 
Departments of Veterans Affairs and Housing and Urban 
Development, and Independent Agencies Appropriations Act, 1999 
(Public Law 105-276): (1) urging that EPA continue to work on 
this issue in close consultation with the Federal Bureau of 
Investigation (FBI); (2) requiring that the FBI submit to 
Congress no later than December 1, 1998, a written report 
containing the FBI's recommendations for appropriate methods of 
public dissemination; and (3) directing EPA to provide Congress 
with monthly updates of its progress in working with the FBI 
and other Federal agencies to develop appropriate RMP protocol 
guidelines.

         any credible evidence/compliance assurance monitoring

    On February 24, 1997, the Environmental Protection Agency 
(EPA) published the final ``Credible Evidence'' rule, which 
became effective on April 25, 1997. The Credible Evidence rule 
concerns EPA's use of certain non-Federal reference method data 
to demonstrate violations of the Clean Air Act. EPA developed 
the Credible Evidence rule based upon an interpretation of 
language contained in Section 113(a) of the Clean Air Act 
regarding the Administrator's enforcement authority. After the 
effective date of the Credible Evidence rule, EPA issued agency 
guidance regarding the use of such evidence in Clean Air Act 
enforcement proceedings. The Credible Evidence rule was 
challenged by various parties filing in the United States Court 
of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit. Commerce 
Committee staff reviewed and monitored developments in EPA's 
implementation of the new rule and the subsequent judicial 
challenge.
    On October 22, 1997, EPA published the final ``Compliance 
Assurance Monitoring'' rule, which became effective on November 
21, 1997. The Compliance Assurance Monitoring rule concerned 
certain air emission monitoring requirements established in 
Clean Air Act operating permits. On January 8, 1998, EPA issued 
agency guidance to EPA Regional Offices regarding the 
implementation of the Compliance Assurance Monitoring rule with 
existing Clean Air Act operating permit programs. Commerce 
Committee staff reviewed and monitored developments in EPA's 
implementation of the Compliance Assurance Monitoring rule.

               vehicle inspection and maintenance issues

    Vehicle Inspection and Maintenance (I&M) programs are 
required for in-use vehicles in certain ozone nonattainment 
areas. In the 104th Congress, the Committee reviewed the 
effectiveness of such programs in two hearings held by the 
Subcommittee on Oversight and Investigations as well as through 
written correspondence and briefings. During the 105th 
Congress, the Committee continued its oversight of I&M 
programs, focusing specifically on the crediting of State I&M 
programs with respect to State Implementation Plans and the 
actual performance of various State I&M programs and 
technologies.
    In addition, the Subcommittee on Health and Environment 
specifically examined the issue of I&M ``avoidance'' in 
Southern California during a field hearing held in San Diego on 
November 17, 1997. This hearing examined the problem of cross-
border commuter vehicles which operated daily in Southern 
California, but which were registered in Mexico. Although State 
law required that such vehicles be subject to California State 
vehicle I&M, the Federal government lacked authority to 
intercept and deny entry to noncomplying vehicles entering the 
United States. The Committee took action to address this 
problem through approval of H.R. 8, a bill to deny entry to 
certain noncomplying foreign-registered vehicles, which passed 
the House, and was signed into law on October 27, 1998 (Public 
Law 105-286).

                 national ambient air quality standards

    On December 13, 1996, the Environmental Protection Agency 
(EPA) proposed revisions to the national ambient air quality 
standards (NAAQS) for ozone and particulate matter. The new EPA 
proposed rules were the focus of significant Committee 
oversight activity during the 105th Congress.
    The Subcommittee on Health and Environment and the 
Subcommittee on Oversight and Investigations held five joint 
hearings on EPA's proposed revisions, and one joint hearing on 
the final revised NAAQS that EPA issued on July 18, 1997. These 
joint hearings explored uncertainties in the scientific bases 
for EPA's revisions and identified significant concerns that 
had been raised by the Department of Energy, Department of 
Commerce, and other Federal agencies. The Subcommittees also 
received testimony from State and local elected officials 
expressing concern regarding EPA's proposed implementation 
scheme for the revised standards.
    The Subcommittees' first hearing on April 10, 1997, focused 
on the scientific bases for the proposed revisions. The 
Subcommittees received testimony from a scientific expert panel 
consisting of the current and four former chairmen of the Clean 
Air Scientific Advisory Committee established under the 1990 
amendments to the Clean Air Act. These scientists testified 
that, in many cases, the scientific assumptions used by EPA 
were subject to uncertainty and that the new standards relied 
primarily on epidemiological associations from a limited number 
of studies using data that had not been released for review by 
other scientists. The Committee demanded that EPA release the 
data. As a result of the Committee's efforts, an independent 
scientific review panel is reviewing these key studies. The 
results of that reanalysis will be used in EPA's next scheduled 
5-year review of the revised standards.
    On April 17, 1997, the Subcommittees held a joint hearing 
on Development of the Regulatory Impact Analysis for EPA's 
Proposed Revisions. The Subcommittees received testimony from 
representatives of the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) 
and EPA. These officials testified regarding serious questions 
raised by OMB, the Departments of Energy and Commerce, and 
other Federal agencies during the internal regulatory review of 
EPA's proposed revisions.
    On May 1, 1997, the Subcommittees held a joint hearing on 
Perspectives of State and Local Elected Officials. The 
Subcommittees received testimony from an expert panel of State 
and local elected officials on impacts associated with EPA's 
proposed standards and questions as to the legal authority for 
EPA's proposed implementation scheme. On May 8, 1997, the 
Subcommittees held a joint hearing and received testimony from 
an expert panel regarding the Health Effects of Ozone and 
Particulate Matter. On May 15, 1997, the Subcommittees held a 
joint hearing to receive testimony from EPA Administrator Carol 
M. Browner regarding the proposed revisions and certain adverse 
views expressed by other Federal agencies.
    On July 18, 1997, EPA published the final revisions to the 
NAAQS for ozone and particulate matter. Accompanying those 
final rules was a July 16, 1997, Memorandum from the President 
to the Administrator of the EPA regarding Implementation of 
Revised Air Quality Standards for Ozone and Particulate Matter. 
Based largely on issues raised during the five joint 
Subcommittee hearings, the Memorandum outlined an alternative, 
less burdensome approach for implementation of the revised 
standards.
    On October 1, 1997, the Subcommittees held a joint hearing 
on Implementation of the Clean Air Act NAAQS Revisions for 
Ozone and Particulate Matter. The Subcommittees received 
testimony from EPA Administrator Carol M. Browner on EPA's 
legal authority for the alternative implementation scheme. The 
Subcommittees also received testimony on implementation from an 
expert panel of State and local officials and representatives 
of small businesses subject to the revised standards. Because 
the legal authority for EPA's alternative implementation scheme 
remained uncertain, Members of the Committee on Commerce worked 
to resolve the ambiguity by incorporating certain elements of 
the alternative implementation scheme in the Transportation 
Equity Act for the 21st Century (Public Law 105-178).

                               project xl

    ``Project XL'' refers to a broad set of actions by the 
Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to give parties subject 
to regulation under the Clean Air Act and other environmental 
laws flexibility to develop alternative environmental 
strategies on the condition that such strategies produce 
greater environmental benefits.
    The Subcommittee on Oversight and Investigations examined 
this program during a November 4, 1997, hearing concerning 
EPA's regulatory reinvention efforts. The hearing examined the 
number and status of individual proposals considered under 
Project XL, the approval and nonapproval of individual projects 
by EPA, the use of a ``superior environmental test'' in the 
approval process for Project XL proposals, and the constraints 
imposed on projects by existing statutes.
    As of December 1998, EPA had received 66 proposals for 
Project XL projects, however, only 10 projects were being 
implemented. Since May 1995, 30 projects were withdrawn or 
rejected by EPA, while 10 projects remained in the process of 
developing a final project agreement (FPA). Five additional 
projects were accepted into the Project XL program, but used an 
alternative route to an FPA, and three projects were in other 
stages of Project XL proposal review.
    The Committee will continue to review Project XL in the 
106th Congress.

                           new source review

    On July 24, 1998, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) 
published certain proposed alternatives for determining the 
applicability of the New Source Review (NSR) program to 
modifications of major sources under the Clean Air Act. EPA is 
in the process of reviewing comments on its 1998 NSR proposal 
as part of its ongoing consideration of its July 23, 1996, 
proposed revisions to the NSR program. Most notably, the 1998 
proposal seeks to alter the existing NSR analysis for 
modifications of certain electric utility steam generating 
units. At present, EPA reviews modifications of electric 
utility steam generating units in a manner different than other 
major sources. EPA's 1998 proposal suggests a new, different 
NSR analysis that would apply to all major sources. Commerce 
Committee staff reviewed EPA's proposal in the 105th Congress 
and will continue to monitor development of the final revised 
NSR rule, which EPA is expected to issue in 1999.

      implementation of safe drinking water act amendments of 1996

    On October 8, 1998, the Subcommittee on Health and 
Environment held a hearing concerning the implementation of the 
1996 Safe Drinking Water Act Amendments (Public Law 104-182). 
This hearing reviewed the activities of the Environmental 
Protection Agency (EPA) over the past two years to meet the 
statutory deadlines established under the 1996 Amendments, as 
well as EPA's work with State and local governments in 
designing a number of new programs to address such matters as 
source water protection, operator certification, and capacity 
development. The hearing also focused on the status of the $8.6 
billion State Revolving Fund, the amount and adequacy of 
funding devoted to safe drinking water programs, the amount and 
adequacy of funding devoted to research activities required by 
the 1996 Amendments, and challenges that may be presented in 
future implementation of the 1996 Amendments.
    In addition, during the 105th Congress, the Committee sent 
letters to the EPA concerning State implementation of the State 
Revolving Fund and the scientific studies necessary for 
promulgation of the drinking water standard for arsenic.
    The Committee will continue to monitor the implementation 
of the 1996 Safe Drinking Water Act Amendments in the 106th 
Congress.

                          environmental audits

    On March 17, 1998, the Subcommittee on Oversight and 
Investigations held a hearing on the Federal-State 
relationship. The hearing focused on the Environmental 
Protection Agency's (EPA's) response to State environmental 
audit programs and examined four primary issues: (1) whether 
environmental audits promote better environmental compliance; 
(2) the extent to which State and Federal audit programs 
encourage better audit practices; (3) the effect EPA practices 
have had on self audit programs and how States and the Federal 
government should work together to encourage self audits; and 
(4) whether State audit programs lack the minimum statutory and 
regulatory required criteria necessary for delegated authority 
of environmental programs.
    Environmental audit reports are usually comprehensive self-
evaluations containing not only underlying data, but 
indications of whether there has been an environmental 
violation. Audit reports can also contain confidential internal 
company discussions (e.g., legal analysis, opinions, suggested 
corrective actions) pertaining to the findings of the audit and 
how best to address them. Because of the candid nature of the 
assessments contained in the audit reports, some have expressed 
the concern that audit reports could be used by EPA to bring 
civil actions for environmental violations, determine intent in 
criminal suits, or otherwise be used by outside groups. 
Companies who have completed or contemplated environmental 
audits have expressed the view that voluntary disclosure of 
information should be afforded some level of legal protection. 
Witness testimony revealed instances when companies using State 
self-audit laws had received lengthy and burdensome requests 
for information from EPA, at least implying that EPA was 
considering taking subsequent legal action.
    The Committee will continue to monitor the progress of 
State environmental audit programs and the actions of EPA with 
respect to the implementation of such programs.

        state enforcement programs under environmental statutes

    The last twenty-five years have seen a revolution in terms 
of increased program delegation from the Environmental 
Protection Agency's (EPA's) regions to the States, consistent 
with the original intent of Congress. In many instances, States 
are the primary permitting and enforcement authorities and 
States have received EPA funding to carry out environmental 
programs. The Committee has reviewed, and continues to review, 
the implementation of the Federal-State environmental 
partnership with a focus on determining which efforts can 
minimize duplication and increase the effectiveness of 
environmental programs. Three hearings conducted by the 
Subcommittee on Oversight and Investigations on November 4, 
1997, March 17, 1998, and June 23, 1998, examined various 
elements of the State-Federal environmental partnership. The 
Committee will continue to review the underlying State-Federal 
partnership as well as monitor EPA efforts to review States' 
performance under Federal environmental statutes.
    As part of this review, the June 23, 1998, hearing focused 
on a General Accounting Office (GAO) report, released the day 
of the hearing, entitled Environmental Protection: EPA's and 
States' Efforts to Focus State Enforcement Programs on Results 
(RCED-98-113). The GAO report analyzed the success of efforts 
by States and the EPA to evaluate the effectiveness of State 
environmental enforcement programs based on outcome-oriented 
results (e.g., actual environmental improvements) instead of 
the traditional measures of the number of enforcement actions 
taken and fines assessed.
    In the report, GAO also highlighted two major areas of 
concern. First, EPA needs to deliver a more consistent message 
to the States regarding alternative compliance strategies. 
Second, the report cited the need for EPA to work with States 
to develop new alternative compliance program measures and to 
overcome some of the technical barriers associated with 
developing new methods for measuring the effectiveness of 
alternative compliance programs.
    The Committee will continue to monitor this issue in the 
106th Congress.

              Additional Oversight Hearings and Activities

      assisted suicide: legal, medical, ethical and social issues

    On March 6, 1997, the Subcommittee on Health and 
Environment held an oversight hearing on Assisted Suicide: 
Legal, Medical, Ethical, and Social Issues. The hearing 
examined a wide range of arguments regarding assisted suicide. 
Testimony was received from religious leaders, medical 
practitioners, medical ethicists, and representatives of the 
community of individuals with disabilities.
    Testimony presented at this hearing assisted the Committee 
in the development of H.R. 1003, the Assisted Suicide Funding 
Restriction Act of 1997, which was reported by the Committee 
and enacted into law as Public Law 105-12.

   continued management concerns at the national institutes of health

    On June 19, 1997, the Subcommittee on Oversight and 
Investigations held a hearing on continuing management concerns 
at the National Institutes of Health (NIH). The hearing 
examined the adequacy of NIH management of its personnel and 
resources with respect to Congressional, Presidential, and NIH 
bans of funds for human embryo research.
    The Committee will continue to examine the management and 
operation of the National Institutes of Health in the 106th 
Congress.

  adequacy of access to investigative drugs for seriously ill patients

    On September 23, 1997, the Subcommittee on Oversight and 
Investigations held a hearing on the adequacy of access to 
investigative drugs for seriously ill patients. The hearing 
examined the concerns of patients with cancer or other life-
threatening diseases about their ability to obtain clearance 
from the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for access to 
experimental treatments. The Subcommittee invited the FDA to 
testify at this hearing and obtained privacy waivers from the 
patient witnesses to enable FDA to respond fully. The 
Department of Health and Human Services commended the 
Subcommittee for seeking waivers from patients and sponsors, 
but decided not to permit the FDA to testify at this open 
hearing because of remaining confidentiality concerns. In 
October 1997, the FDA briefed the Subcommittee in closed 
session.
    The Committee will continue to examine this issue in the 
106th Congress.

    the department of health and human services' policy for federal 
                    workplace drug testing programs

    On July 23, 1998, the Subcommittee on Oversight and 
Investigations held a hearing on the Department of Health and 
Human Services' (HHS') Policy for Federal Workplace Drug-
Testing Programs. The purpose of the hearing was to determine 
whether HHS has established the most effective drug-testing 
policy by relying exclusively on urine-testing technology, and 
if not, to examine what actions HHS can take to attain the most 
effective drug-testing policy.
    Testimony presented at the hearing indicated that a 
complementary program of urinanalysis, hair testing, and 
perhaps blood testing, sweat testing, and saliva testing was 
the optimal approach for a drug-testing program.
    The Committee will continue to monitoring the Substance 
Abuse and Mental Health Administration and the Food and Drug 
Administration as these agencies consider scientific issues 
concerning alternative testing technologies to urinalysis.

                         environmental justice

    In February 1998, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) 
issued the Interim Guidance for Investigating Title VI 
Administrative Complaints (Interim Guidance) setting out how 
EPA will decide ``environmental justice'' claims filed against 
State environmental departments. These environmental justice 
claims allege that a specific State environmental permitting 
action discriminated against minority groups. Many State 
government organizations, such as the National Governors' 
Association, the U.S. Conference of Mayors, and the 
Environmental Council of the States, complained that EPA should 
have consulted with States, local governments, and other 
stakeholders on this important issue and that the Interim 
Guidance will hurt urban revitalization and the cleanup of 
contaminated ``brownfields.''
    Commerce Committee staff met with EPA staff on three 
separate occasions to discuss EPA's environmental justice 
policy, and more specifically the development of the Interim 
Guidance.
    On August 6, 1998, the Subcommittee on Oversight and 
Investigations held a hearing on EPA's Title VI Interim 
Guidance and Alternative State Approaches. The Subcommittee 
heard testimony confirming that State officials had no input 
into the development of EPA's Interim Guidance. Witnesses also 
expressed concern that implementation of the Interim Guidance 
would cause adverse environmental and economic effects. The 
first witness panel included the Executive Director of the 
Environmental Council of the States, the Director of the 
Environmental Justice Initiative of the Natural Resources 
Defense Council, and the President of the National Black 
Chamber of Commerce. The Subcommittee next heard testimony from 
the Texas Natural Resources Conservation Commission and the New 
Jersey Department of Environmental Protection regarding these 
States' innovative programs to enhance public participation in 
the environmental permitting process, as an alternative to 
EPA's approach. Finally, the Subcommittee received testimony 
from the Director of EPA's Office of Civil Rights. The Director 
testified that, were EPA to begin the Interim Guidance process 
again, EPA clearly would recognize the importance of 
stakeholder involvement earlier in the process. The Director 
outlined certain steps that EPA would take to correct the lack 
of State input.
    Concerned that the interests of States and municipalities 
were not being adequately addressed on such an important policy 
matter, the Committee sent a follow-up letter to the EPA on 
October 26, 1998, suggesting the only method of policy 
development which would provide the level of participation and 
transparency necessary to address the valid concerns of States 
and stakeholders would be the use of the all inclusive, 
participatory measures afforded by notice and comment 
rulemaking under the Administrative Procedure Act.
    The Committee will continue to examine this issue in the 
106th Congress.

     imported drugs: u.s.-eu mutual recognition agreement on drug 
                              inspections

    On October 2, 1998, the Subcommittee on Oversight and 
Investigations held a hearing on the U.S.-EU (European Union) 
mutual recognition agreement on drug inspections (MRA), 
referred to as the annex on pharmaceutical good manufacturing 
practices. The purpose of the hearing was to examine why 
pharmaceuticals were included in the umbrella agreement, what 
effect this MRA will have on protecting the health of the 
American consumer, and any additional unresolved issues.
    The one panel of witnesses included lead negotiators from 
the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative, the Department of 
Commerce, and the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). These 
officials discussed: (1) the history of the umbrella trade 
agreement; (2) the current status of the pharmaceutical MRA; 
(3) the unresolved issues; and (4) what cost and drain on FDA 
resources will result from attempts to implement the 
pharmaceutical MRA. The witnesses defended the MRA as being in 
the best interest of the United States, arguing that the MRA 
could save FDA resources, enhance trade, and eliminate 
duplicative regulation.
    However, the hearing also demonstrated that there were many 
unanswered concerns such as: the short-term increase of 
resources needed; the questionable long-term savings for FDA; 
whether FDA was pressured to lower drug safety and quality 
standards; that the agreement may be unworkable because of many 
unresolved questions; that the EU's technical trade barrier has 
not been eliminated; and the further loss of pharmaceutical 
manufacturing in the United States.
    As a result of the hearing, the Committee, on October 9, 
1998, requested that the General Accounting Office: (1) produce 
a projection of FDA costs incurred as a result of the MRA and 
identify all the assumptions (including direct benefits to FDA) 
required to make the cost projections; (2) identify other costs 
(e.g., trade shifts) and benefits (e.g., good will) that would 
not show up in FDA resource calculations; and (3) identify all 
the unresolved issues of the Pharmaceutical GMP sector at the 
time of its signing and determine the agreed plan of action of 
both the U.S. and the EU for resolving those issues over the 
three-year transition period.
    Action on this issue is expected to continue in the 106th 
Congress.
                              ----------                              


                        ENERGY AND POWER ISSUES

                     electric utility restructuring

    During the 105th Congress, the Subcommittee on Energy and 
Power held eight oversight hearings and two days of legislative 
hearings on the issue of electric utility industry 
restructuring. The oversight hearings were held on April 14, 
April 18, May 2, May 9, June 19, July 9, September 5 and 
September 24, 1997. The legislative hearings were held on 
October 21 and October 22, 1997. The hearings focused on the 
opportunities and challenges that would arise from giving 
retail consumers the ability to choose their electricity 
suppliers. Topics covered at the hearings included the impact 
of retail competition on electricity prices, reliability, and 
innovation. Testimony and information gathered at these 
hearings provided a variety of positions on the necessity and 
scope of Federal action related to electric utility 
restructuring.
    The oversight hearings examined the many challenges that 
face municipal generation facilities, investor-owned utilities, 
and rural electric cooperatives in the transition to retail 
competition. Comparisons were drawn between the successful 
implementation of competition in the wholesale bulk electricity 
markets and the effort to foster competition in retail markets. 
Testimony was received from power suppliers, Federal and State 
regulators, economists, labor unions, the environmental 
community, and consumers.
    The Committee on Commerce plans to continue consideration 
of electric utility industry restructuring legislation in the 
106th Congress.

                  federal energy regulatory commission

    On September 25, 1998, the Subcommittee on Energy and Power 
held an oversight hearing on the Federal hydroelectric 
relicensing process. The hearing reviewed the Federal Energy 
Regulatory Commission's (FERC's) hydroelectric relicensing 
process, assessed whether there is a need to make improvements 
to this process, and focused on whether there is a need for 
Federal legislation to improve the process. The Committee will 
continue to review FERC's regulation of hydropower facilities, 
as well as its regulation of electric utilities and natural gas 
and oil pipelines in the 106th Congress.

                 department of energy's budget request

    The Subcommittee on Energy and Power held oversight 
hearings on both the Department of Energy's (DOE's) budget 
request for Fiscal Year 1998 and the budget request for Fiscal 
Year 1999.
    On February 11, 1997, the Subcommittee on Energy and Power 
held an oversight hearing on the Department of Energy's budget 
request for Fiscal Year 1998. The purpose of the hearing was to 
examine the funding priorities within DOE as the Department's 
mission shifts from nuclear weapons production to environmental 
remediation of its contaminated weapons facilities. The hearing 
focused on DOE's Environmental Management privat