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108th Congress                                            Rept. 108-789
                        HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES
 2d Session                                                      Part 1

======================================================================
 
     MINORITY SERVING INSTITUTION DIGITAL AND WIRELESS TECHNOLOGY 
                        OPPORTUNITY ACT OF 2003

                                _______
                                

               November 19, 2004.--Ordered to be printed

                                _______
                                

  Mr. Boehlert, from the Committee on Science, submitted the following

                              R E P O R T

                             together with

                             MINORITY VIEWS

                        [To accompany H.R. 2801]

      [Including cost estimate of the Congressional Budget Office]

    The Committee on Science, to whom was referred the bill 
(H.R. 2801) to establish a digital and wireless network 
technology program, and for other purposes, having considered 
the same, report favorably thereon with an amendment and 
recommend that the bill as amended do pass.

                                CONTENTS

                                                                   Page
   I. Amendment.......................................................2
  II. Purpose of the Bill.............................................5
 III. Background and Need for the Legislation.........................6
  IV. Summary of Hearings.............................................7
   V. Committee Actions...............................................8
  VI. Summary of Major Provisions of the Bill.........................8
 VII. Section-by-Section Analysis (by Title and Section)..............9
VIII. Committee Views................................................10
  IX. Cost Estimate..................................................13
   X. Congressional Budget Office Cost Estimate......................13
  XI. Compliance With Public Law 104-4 (Unfunded Mandates)...........15
 XII. Committee Oversight Findings and Recommendations...............15
XIII. Statement on General Performance Goals and Objectives..........15
 XIV. Constitutional Authority Statement.............................15
  XV. Federal Advisory Committee Statement...........................15
 XVI. Congressional Accountability Act...............................15
XVII. Statement on Preemption of State, Local, or Tribal Law.........16
XVIII.Changes in Existing Law Made by the Bill, as Reported..........16

 XIX. Committee Recommendations......................................20
  XX. Minority Views.................................................21
 XXI. Proceedings of the Full Committee Markup.......................23

                               Amendment

    The amendment is as follows:
    Strike all after the enacting clause and insert the 
following:

SECTION 1. SHORT TITLE.

  This Act may be cited as the ``Minority Serving Institution Digital 
and Wireless Technology Opportunity Act of 2003''.

SEC. 2. ESTABLISHMENT OF PROGRAM.

  Section 5 of the Stevenson-Wydler Technology Innovation Act of 1980 
(15 U.S.C. 3704) is amended by inserting the following after subsection 
(f):
  ``(g) Minority Serving Institution Digital and Wireless Technology 
Opportunity Program.--
          ``(1) In general.--The Secretary, acting through the Under 
        Secretary, shall establish a Minority Serving Institution 
        Digital and Wireless Technology Opportunity Program to assist 
        eligible institutions in acquiring, and augmenting their use 
        of, digital and wireless networking technologies to improve the 
        quality and delivery of educational services at eligible 
        institutions.
          ``(2) Authorized activities.--An eligible institution may use 
        a grant, cooperative agreement, or contract awarded under this 
        subsection--
                  ``(A) to acquire equipment, instrumentation, 
                networking capability, hardware and software, digital 
                network technology, wireless technology, and 
                infrastructure to further the objective of the Program 
                described in paragraph (1);
                  ``(B) to develop and provide training, education, and 
                professional development programs, including faculty 
                development, to increase the use of, and usefulness of, 
                digital and wireless networking technology;
                  ``(C) to provide teacher education, including the 
                provision of preservice teacher training and in-service 
                professional development at eligible institutions, 
                library and media specialist training, and preschool 
                and teacher aid certification to individuals who seek 
                to acquire or enhance technology skills in order to use 
                digital and wireless networking technology in the 
                classroom or instructional process, including 
                instruction in science, mathematics, engineering, and 
                technology subjects;
                  ``(D) to obtain capacity-building technical 
                assistance, including through remote technical support, 
                technical assistance workshops, and distance learning 
                services; and
                  ``(E) to foster the use of digital and wireless 
                networking technology to improve research and 
                education, including scientific, mathematics, 
                engineering, and technology instruction.
          ``(3) Application and review procedures.--
                  ``(A) In general.--To be eligible to receive a grant, 
                cooperative agreement, or contract under this 
                subsection, an eligible institution shall submit an 
                application to the Under Secretary at such time, in 
                such manner, and containing such information as the 
                Under Secretary may require. Such application, at a 
                minimum, shall include a description of how the funds 
                will be used, including a description of any digital 
                and wireless networking technology to be acquired, and 
                a description of how the institution will ensure that 
                digital and wireless networking will be made accessible 
                to, and employed by, students, faculty, and 
                administrators. The Under Secretary, consistent with 
                subparagraph (C) and in consultation with the advisory 
                council established under subparagraph (B), shall 
                establish procedures to review such applications. The 
                Under Secretary shall publish the application 
                requirements and review criteria in the Federal 
                Register, along with a statement describing the 
                availability of funds.
                  ``(B) Advisory council.--The Under Secretary shall 
                establish an advisory council to advise the Under 
                Secretary on the best approaches to encourage maximum 
                participation by eligible institutions in the program 
                established under paragraph (1), and on the procedures 
                to review proposals submitted to theprogram. In 
selecting the members of the advisory council, the Under Secretary 
shall consult with representatives of appropriate organizations, 
including representatives of eligible institutions, to ensure that the 
membership of the advisory council includes representatives of minority 
businesses and eligible institution communities. The Under Secretary 
shall also consult with experts in digital and wireless networking 
technology to ensure that such expertise is represented on the advisory 
council.
                  ``(C) Review panels.--Each application submitted 
                under this subsection by an eligible institution shall 
                be reviewed by a panel of individuals selected by the 
                Under Secretary to judge the quality and merit of the 
                proposal, including the extent to which the eligible 
                institution can effectively and successfully utilize 
                the proposed grant, cooperative agreement, or contract 
                to carry out the program described in paragraph (1). 
                The Under Secretary shall ensure that the review panels 
                include representatives of minority serving 
                institutions and others who are knowledgeable about 
                eligible institutions and technology issues. The Under 
                Secretary shall ensure that no individual assigned 
                under this subsection to review any application has a 
                conflict of interest with regard to that application. 
                The Under Secretary shall take into consideration the 
                recommendations of the review panel in determining 
                whether to award a grant, cooperative agreement, or 
                contract to an eligible institution.
                  ``(D) Information dissemination.--The Under Secretary 
                shall convene an annual meeting of eligible 
                institutions receiving grants, cooperative agreements, 
                or contracts under this subsection to foster 
                collaboration and capacity-building activities among 
                eligible institutions.
                  ``(E) Matching requirement.--The Under Secretary may 
                not award a grant, cooperative agreement, or contract 
                to an eligible institution under this subsection unless 
                such institution agrees that, with respect to the costs 
                incurred by the institution in carrying out the program 
                for which the grant, cooperative agreement, or contract 
                was awarded, such institution shall make available, 
                directly, or through donations from public or private 
                entities, non-Federal contributions in an amount equal 
                to one-quarter of the grant, cooperative agreement, or 
                contract awarded by the Under Secretary, or$500,000, 
whichever is the lesser amount. The Under Secretary shall waive the 
matching requirement for any institution or consortium with no 
endowment, or an endowment that has a current dollar value lower than 
$50,000,000.
                  ``(F) Awards.--
                          ``(i) Limitation.--An eligible institution 
                        that receives a grant, cooperative agreement, 
                        or contract under this subsection that exceeds 
                        $2,500,000 shall not be eligible to receive 
                        another grant, cooperative agreement, or 
                        contract.
                          ``(ii) Consortia.--Grants, cooperative 
                        agreements, and contracts may only be awarded 
                        to eligible institutions. Eligible institutions 
                        may seek funding under this subsection for 
                        consortia which may include other eligible 
                        institutions, a State or a State education 
                        agency, local education agencies, institutions 
                        of higher education, community-based 
                        organizations, national nonprofit 
                        organizations, or businesses, including 
                        minority businesses.
                          ``(iii) Planning grants.--The Under Secretary 
                        may provide funds to develop strategic plans to 
                        implement such grants, cooperative agreements, 
                        or contracts.
                          ``(iv) Institutional diversity.--In awarding 
                        grants, cooperative agreements, and contracts 
                        to eligible institutions, the Under Secretary 
                        shall ensure, to the extent practicable, that 
                        awards are made to all types of institutions 
                        eligible for assistance under this subsection.
                          ``(v) Need.--In awarding funds under this 
                        subsection, the Under Secretary shall give 
                        priority to the institution with the greatest 
                        demonstrated need for assistance.
                  ``(G) Annual report and evaluation.--
                          ``(i) Annual report required from 
                        recipients.--Each institution that receives a 
                        grant, cooperative agreement, or contract 
                        awarded under this subsection shall provide an 
                        annual report to the Under Secretary on its use 
                        of the grant, cooperative agreement, or 
                        contract.
                          ``(ii) Independent assessment.--Not later 
                        than 6 months after the date of enactment of 
                        this subsection, the Under Secretary shall 
                        enter into a contract with the National Academy 
                        of Public Administration to conduct periodic 
                        assessments of the program. The Assessments 
                        shall be conducted once every 3 years during 
                        the 10-year period following the enactment of 
                        this subsection. The assessments shall include 
                        an evaluation of the effectiveness of the 
                        program in improving the education and training 
                        of students, faculty and staff at eligible 
                        institutions that have been awarded grants, 
                        cooperative agreements, or contracts under the 
                        program; an evaluation of the effectiveness of 
                        the program in improving access to, and 
                        familiarity with, digital and wireless 
                        networking technology for students, faculty, 
                        and staff at all eligible institutions; an 
                        evaluation of the procedures established under 
                        paragraph (3)(A); and recommendations for 
                        improving theprogram, including recommendations 
concerning the continuing need for Federal support. In carrying out its 
assessments, the National Academy of Public Administration shall review 
the reports submitted to the Under Secretary under clause (i).
                          ``(iii) Report to congress.--Upon completion 
                        of each independent assessment carried out 
                        under clause (ii), the Under Secretary shall 
                        transmit the assessment to Congress along with 
                        a summary of the Under Secretary's plans, if 
                        any, to implement the recommendations of the 
                        National Academy of Public Administration.
                  ``(H) Definitions.--In this subsection:
                          ``(i) Digital and wireless networking 
                        technology.--The term `digital and wireless 
                        networking technology' means computer and 
                        communications equipment and software that 
                        facilitates the transmission of information in 
                        a digital format.
                          ``(ii) Eligible institution.--The term 
                        `eligible institution' means an institution 
                        that is--
                                  ``(I) a historically Black college or 
                                university that is a part B 
                                institution, as defined in section 
                                322(2) of the Higher Education Act of 
                                1965 (20 U.S.C. 1061(2)), an 
                                institution described in section 
                                326(e)(1)(A), (B), or (C) of that Act 
                                (20 U.S.C. 1063b(e)(1)(A), (B), or 
                                (C)), or a consortium of institutions 
                                described in this subparagraph;
                                  ``(II) a Hispanic-serving 
                                institution, as defined in section 
                                502(a)(5) of the Higher Education Act 
                                of 1965 (20 U.S.C. 1101a(a)(5));
                                  ``(III) a tribally controlled college 
                                or university, as defined in section 
                                316(b)(3) of the Higher Education Act 
                                of 1965 (20 U.S.C. 1059c(b)(3));
                                  ``(IV) an Alaska Native-serving 
                                institution under section 317(b) of the 
                                Higher Education Act of 1965 (20 U.S.C. 
                                1059d(b));
                                  ``(V) a Native Hawaiian-serving 
                                institution under section 317(b) of the 
                                Higher Education Act of 1965 (20 U.S.C. 
                                1059d(b)); or
                                  ``(VI) an institution of higher 
                                education (as defined in section 365 of 
                                the Higher Education Act of 1965 (20 
                                U.S.C. 1067k)) with an enrollment of 
                                needy students (as defined in section 
                                312(d) of the Higher Education Act of 
                                1965 (20 U.S.C. 1058(d)).
                          ``(iii) Institution of higher education.--The 
                        term `institution of higher education' has the 
                        meaning given the term in section 101 of the 
                        Higher Education Act of 1965 (20 U.S.C. 1001).
                          ``(iv) Local educational agency.--The term 
                        `local educational agency' has the meaning 
                        given the term in section 9101 of the 
                        Elementary and Secondary Education Act of 1965 
                        (20 U.S.C. 7801).
                          ``(v) Minority business.--The term `minority 
                        business' includes HUBZone small business 
                        concerns (as defined in section 3(p) of the 
                        Small Business Act (15 U.S.C. 632(p)).
                          ``(vi) Minority individual.--The term 
                        `minority individual' means an American Indian, 
                        Alaskan Native, Black (not of Hispanic origin), 
                        Hispanic (including persons of Mexican, Puerto 
                        Rican, Cuban and Central or South American 
                        origin), or Pacific Islander individual.
                          ``(vii) State.--The term `State' has the 
                        meaning given the term in section 9101 of the 
                        Elementary and Secondary Education Act of 1965 
                        (20 U.S.C. 7801).
                          ``(viii) State educational agency.--The term 
                        `State educational agency' has the meaning 
                        given the term in section 9101 of the 
                        Elementary and Secondary Education Act of 1965 
                        (20 U.S.C. 7801).''.

SEC. 3. AUTHORIZATION OF APPROPRIATIONS.

  There are authorized to be appropriated to the Technology 
Administration of the Department of Commerce to carry out section 5(g) 
of the Stevenson-Wydler Technology Innovation Act of 1980--
          (1) $250,000,000 for fiscal year 2004;
          (2) $250,000,000 for fiscal year 2005;
          (3) $250,000,000 for fiscal year 2006;
          (4) $250,000,000 for fiscal year 2007; and
          (5) $250,000,000 for fiscal year 2008.

SEC. 4. ACHIEVEMENTS AND CONTRIBUTIONS OF AFRICAN-AMERICAN SCIENTISTS, 
                    MATHEMATICIANS, AND INVENTORS.

  (a) Findings.--The Congress finds that--
          (1) the historical experience of Americans of African descent 
        began more than 5,000 years B.C.E., with notable scientists, 
        mathematicians, and inventors such as Imhotep, who is 
        recognized by contemporary historians as the first architect, a 
        pioneer in mathematics, an eminent sage and patron of scribes, 
        a respected leader among early Egyptian and Greek 
        civilizations, builder of the first pyramid, and the physician 
        upon whose knowledge and teachings about human anatomy and the 
        functions of the major organs modern medicine rests;
          (2) African-Americans have earned an undeniable role in the 
        development of the culture of this Nation, contributing major 
        inventions and scientific discoveries, among other things, that 
        enrich the quality of life for all mankind;
          (3) the scientific and technological contributions of 
        African-Americans to the world are largely absent from history 
        books;
          (4) the ethos of this rich and proud people, descendants of 
        kings and queens, has been passed down to generations through 
        whispered tales by a remnant of African-American ancestors who 
        understood the relationship between honor, respect, and 
        appreciation of heritage and culture, and the vision and 
        success of future generations;
          (5) it is with this spirit that we recognize and celebrate 
        the creative genius and contributions of Annie Easley, Sharon 
        J. Barnes, Thomas L. Jennings, Dr. Benjamin S. Carson, David 
        Blackwell, David N. Crosthwait, Elijah McCoy, Clarence A. 
        Ellis, Phillip Emeagwali, Charles R. Drew, Sarah E. Goode, 
        Granville T. Woods, Lewis H. Latimer, Meredith C. Gourdine, 
        Ernest E. Just, Evelyn Boyd Granville, Norbert Rillieux, Mae C. 
        Jemison, George Carruthers, Garret A. Morgan, J. Ernest 
        Wilkins, Sarah Boone, Booker T. Washington, and numerous other 
        African-Americans whose great achievements evidence a vast pool 
        of untapped intellect;
          (6) education has been the social, economic, and political 
        gatekeeper for African-Americans, and will become increasingly 
        so for students of color desiring to participate fully in the 
        scientific and technological innovations of the new millennium;
          (7) although progress has been made in the educational 
        attainment of African-Americans, they remain less likely than 
        whites and Asians to graduate from high school, enroll in 
        college, graduate from college, and pursue graduate and 
        professional degrees;
          (8) African-Americans represent approximately 12 percent of 
        the population in the United States, but only 3 percent of the 
        total science and engineering labor force, less than 1 percent 
        of scientists and engineers, 2 percent of doctoral scientists 
        and engineers, and 1 quarter of 1 percent of computer 
        scientists;
          (9) if the declining number and percentage of African-
        American high school and college students choosing careers that 
        require undergraduate and advanced degrees in science and 
        mathematics continues unabated, the serious shortage of 
        African-American scientists, mathematicians, physicians, 
        computer scientists, and inventors would cause serious harm to 
        the Nation's leadership in scientific research;
          (10) the dreams and aspirations of too many African-American 
        youth have withered and must be revitalized with the message 
        that they descend from a proud and noble people who expected 
        and settled for nothing less than excellence in every endeavor, 
        and whose greatness has left an indelible mark on the world;
          (11) it is vital that the citizens of this Nation, especially 
        young African-Americans, realize and appreciate the important 
        contributions of their ancestors and contemporaries to past and 
        present society; and
          (12) to fulfill the Nation's commitment to equal opportunity 
        and prosperity for every citizen, it is imperative that 
        African-American youth and people of all races and ages realize 
        that the fields of science, mathematics, engineering, and 
        technology are available and accessible to everyone.
  (b) Acknowledgement and Recognition.--The Congress acknowledges and 
recognizes the significant achievements and contributions of African-
American scientists, mathematicians, and inventors.

                        II. Purpose of the Bill

    The purpose of the bill is to assist minority-serving 
institutions in acquiring, and augmenting their use of, digital 
and wireless networking technologies to improve the quality and 
delivery of educational services at their institutions.

              III. Background and Need for the Legislation

    Developing an educated and technologically literate 
workforce is an important part of our efforts to maintain our 
Nation's preeminence in an increasingly competitive, 
information-based, global economy. Whether technology should be 
used in schools is no longer the issue. Rather the current 
emphasis is on ensuring that technology is available and used 
effectively to create new opportunities in school and at work. 
Already, more than half of all workers--from office workers to 
auto mechanics--use a computer on the job, and that number is 
expected to grow in the near future. If we are to tap the full 
potential of this country and its people, we must ensure that 
all Americans are technically proficient and prepared for the 
21st century workforce.
    Unfortunately, too many Americans--and minorities in 
particular--have been raised in an environment without a 
computer in the home, attended poor schools that were neither 
wired nor equipped with 21st century technology, and have been 
taught by educators who may not have had previous experience 
with computers. Despite a significant federal investment in 
education technology at the elementary and secondary school 
levels, a large number of low-income, minority students still 
have their first exposure to computers and the Internet when 
they arrive on the college campus.
    The U.S. Department of Commerce first documented the 
disparity between information ``haves'' and information ``have-
nots''--the so-called ``digital divide''--in 1995. More 
recently, the Department issued a July 2000 report, entitled 
Falling Through the Net: Toward Digital Inclusion, which found 
that African-Americans, Hispanics, and other traditional 
``have-not'' groups were experiencing an access disparity that 
persisted and, in some cases, widened in recent years. Whites 
were more likely to have access to the Internet from home than 
African-Americans or Hispanics from any location, with African-
American and Hispanic households approximately one-third as 
likely as a household of Asian/Pacific Islander descent to have 
Internet access and roughly two-fifths as likely as white 
households. The 2000 report also found that the gap appeared to 
be growing wider, with the digital divide increasing slightly 
for African-Americans and Hispanics from their December 1998 
rates.
    The digital divide series prompted the National Association 
for Equal Opportunity in Higher Education (NAFEO), a non-profit 
public policy and advocacy group, to assess the computing 
resources, networking and connectivity of its member 
universities. Of NAFEO's 118 member institutions, 80 
Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) provided 
input into the study, known as the HBCU Technology Assessment 
Study. Funded by the U.S. Department of Commerce, the study 
found that 88 percent of HBCUs had access to T-1 lines--
approximately 1.5 million bits per second (Mbs)--the minimum 
standard for connectivity and generally considered insufficient 
to support capabilities beyond Internet and World Wide Web 
connectivity for an institution of any size. Larger bandwidth, 
for faster connections and more Web-based applications, was 
available to half of reporting institutions.
    The larger problem turned out not to be the availability of 
networking capacity, but rather its use. Only 7.5 percent 
reported using the high-speed lines even though they were 
available at half the institutions. Similarly, of the 29 
percent of HBCUs with access to wireless technology, only 43 
percent were using it. Although it was not clear why many HBCUs 
weren't using the high-speed connections available to them, 
some speculated that it had to do with finances, lack of 
strategic planning, faculty motivation, and training. The study 
also found that none of the participating HBCUs required 
undergraduate students to own computers and only 15 percent 
recommended student computer ownership. As a result, the vast 
majority of HBCU students relied on institutional resources to 
connect to the Internet, World Wide Web or other networks, yet 
only 50 percent of the respondents reported providing ``on-
demand'' student access to computing resources.
    Although the report did not examine the need for an 
improved technology infrastructure at other minority-serving 
institutions (MSIs), anecdotal information indicates that the 
problems at other MSIs mirror those at the HBCUs.
    MSIs play a unique role in the education of our diverse 
American workforce. According to recent reports, 21 percent of 
all college degrees and certificates awarded to African-
American, American Indian and Hispanic students are conferred 
by MSIs. MSIs also help underrepresented students succeed in 
all disciplines, and science, mathematics, and engineering in 
particular. For example, of African-Americans earning bachelor 
degrees in science, math, engineering or technology fields in 
1996, 31 percent received them at HBCUs. Similarly, Hispanic-
Serving Institutions produced 20 percent of all science, math, 
engineering or technology bachelor's degrees awarded to 
Hispanics in 1996.
    MSIs have special expertise in serving their communities, 
which include large numbers of low-income or first-generation 
college students. Unlike other, larger institutions of higher 
education, however, MSIs typically have small or nonexistent 
endowments and few wealthy alumni. As a result, the ability to 
finance the acquisition and maintenance of the technology that 
will prepare these students for the workforce is especially 
challenging for many MSIs.
    This Act seeks to address the concerns above and provides 
funding to assist minority-serving institutions in acquiring, 
and augmenting their use of, digital and wireless networking 
technologies to improve the quality and delivery of educational 
services at their institutions. In particular, the Act is 
focused on funding activities that will improve the technology 
skills of students, faculty and administrators and narrow the 
disparity in access to technology.

                          IV. Hearing Summary

    On Wednesday, July 9, 2003, the Subcommittee on Research of 
the Committee on Science held a hearing to examine the unmet 
technology infrastructure needs of minority-serving 
institutions (MSIs). Witnesses provided comments on and made 
recommendations foradditions to H.R. 2183, the Minority Serving 
Institution Digital and Wireless Technology Opportunity Act of 2003, 
introduced by Representative J. Randy Forbes. The Subcommittee received 
testimony from Senator George Allen, sponsor of S. 196, the Senate 
companion to H.R. 2183, and Representatives Edolphus Towns, sponsor of 
H.R. 2272, similar bipartisan legislation introduced in the House of 
Representatives. The Subcommittee also heard testimony from 
representatives of MSIs and associations of such institutions, 
including the National Association for Equal Opportunity in Higher 
Education, the Hispanic Association of Colleges and Universities, and 
the United Negro College Fund. These witnesses discussed the technology 
infrastructure needs at MSIs as well as efforts by such institutions to 
address their technology needs. Finally, the Subcommittee heard from 
the National Science Foundation (NSF) Director. Dr. Rita Colwell 
described her agency's efforts to expand access to women and minorities 
in science, mathematics, engineering and technology education and 
research and announced a new initiative to provide outreach to MSIs. 
She also expressed opposition to the placement of the program in the 
bill at NSF.

                          V. Committee Actions

    On July 21, 2003, Representatives J. Randy Forbes and 
Edolphus Towns reintroduced the modified text of H.R. 2183 as 
H.R. 2801, the Minority Serving Institution Digital and 
Wireless Technology Opportunity Act of 2003, a bill to build 
the technology infrastructure at MSIs.
    The Full Committee on Science met on July 22, 2003 to 
consider the bill. A clarifying amendment, which provided that 
instruction in science, mathematics, engineering and technology 
subjects should be among those in which educators are able to 
receive training in the use of technology, was offered by 
Chairman Boehlert. The amendment was adopted by voice vote. An 
amendment was offered by Ms. Woolsey, on behalf of Ms. Johnson, 
to express the Sense of the Congress on the contributions of 
African American mathematicians, scientists and inventors. The 
amendment was adopted by voice vote. An amendment was offered 
by Mr. Honda to create a new category of minority institutions 
for Asian Americans. By unanimous consent, Mr. Honda withdrew 
the amendment. Mr. Hall moved that the Committee favorably 
report the bill, H.R. 2801, as amended, with the recommendation 
that the bill as amended do pass, that the staff be instructed 
to make technical and conforming changes to the bill as amended 
and prepare the legislative report, and that the Chairman take 
all necessary steps to bring the bill before the House for 
consideration. With a quorum present, the motion was agreed to 
by voice vote.

              VI. Summary of Major Provisions of the Bill

     Establishes the Minority Serving Institution 
Digital and Wireless Technology Opportunity Program within the 
Technology Administration of the Department of Commerce to 
assist MSIs in acquiring and augmenting their use of networking 
and information technology. Funds may be used to acquire 
equipment; develop and provide training, education and 
professional development programs related to the use of 
technology; provide teacher education, including pre-service 
and in-service professional development, library and media 
specialist training and pre-school and teacher aid 
certification in technology; obtain technical assistance; and 
foster the use of technology to improve research and education.
     Establishes an Advisory Council, composed of 
representatives of MSIs, minority businesses and others with 
expertise in technology, to help encourage maximum 
participation among eligible institutions in the program.
     Establishes review panels, selected by the Under 
Secretary, with, among others, representatives of MSIs and 
others who are knowledgeable about MSIs and technology issues, 
to judge the quality and merit of the proposals, including the 
extent to which the institution can effectively use the funds. 
Requires the Under Secretary to consider the recommendations of 
a review panel in determining whether to award or deny funds.
     Requires matching funds of 25 percent or $500,000, 
whichever is less, for institutions with endowments of more 
than $50,000,000. Requires awards to be granted on a priority 
basis to those with a demonstrated need for assistance and, to 
the extent practicable, to all types of institutions eligible 
for assistance.
     Requires institutions to report annually to the 
Under Secretary on their use of the funds.
     Requires the Under Secretary to contract with the 
National Academy of Public Administration to conduct an 
independent assessment once every three years on the 
effectiveness of the program in improving the education and 
training as well as access to and familiarity with technology 
for students, faculty and staff. Also requires recommendations 
on the continuing need for federal support. Upon completion, 
requires the results of the independent assessment to be 
transmitted to the Congress.
     Authorizes $250 million for fiscal year 2004 and 
all subsequent years through fiscal year 2008.

        VII. Section-by-Section Analysis (by Title and Section)


Section 1. Short title

    The ``Minority Serving Institution Digital and Wireless 
Technology Opportunity Act.''

Section 2. Establishment of program

    Establishes a Minority Serving Institution Digital and 
Wireless Technology Opportunity Program within the Technology 
Administration of the Department of Commerce to assist eligible 
institutions in acquiring, and augmenting the use of, digital 
and wireless networking technologies to improve the quality and 
delivery of educational services at minority-serving 
institutions (MSIs).
    Funds may be used to (1) acquire equipment, 
instrumentation, networking capability, hardware and software, 
digital network technology, wireless technology, 
andinfrastructure; (2) develop and provide digital and wireless 
networking technology training, education and professional development; 
(3) acquire capacity-building technical assistance through remote 
technical support, workshops, and distance learning services; and (4) 
foster the use of digital and wireless networking technology to improve 
research and education.
    Requires applicants to describe any technology to be 
acquired and how the applicant will ensure that the technology 
will be made available to students, faculty and administrators. 
Requires the Under Secretary, consistent with the 
recommendations of a review panel and in consultation with the 
advisory panel, to establish other application requirements.
    Requires the establishment of an advisory council, which 
must include representatives of minority institutions, minority 
businesses and technology experts, to help the Under Secretary 
encourage maximum participation by eligible institutions and to 
provide advice on the procedures to review applications. 
Requires the establishment of review panels, which must include 
representatives of MSIs and others who are knowledgeable about 
MSIs and technology issues, to judge the quality and merit of 
proposals and the extent to which they can effectively and 
successfully utilize the funds. Requires the Under Secretary to 
take into consideration the recommendations of a review panel 
in awarding grants. Requires the Under Secretary to convene an 
annual meeting of MSIs receiving grants to foster collaboration 
and capacity building.
    Requires a non-federal match equal to 25 percent of the 
grant or $500,000, whichever is less, for institutions with an 
endowment of more than $50,000,000. Limits institutions that 
receive grants that exceed $2,500,000 from receiving another 
grant during the authorization.
    Allows MSIs to seek funds as part of a consortium, but 
requires grants to be awarded to the MSIs only. Allows grants 
for developing strategic plans. Requires a priority in funding 
for institutions with the greatest need for assistance and 
requires that awards are made to all types of eligible 
institutions.
    Requires institutions to report annually to the Under 
Secretary on their use of the funds. Requires the Under 
Secretary to contract with the National Academy of Public 
Administration to conduct an independent assessment once every 
three years on the effectiveness of the program in improving 
education and training, as well as access to, and familiarity 
with technology for students, faculty and staff. Also requires 
recommendations on the continuing need for federal support. 
Upon completion, requires the results of the independent 
assessment to be transmitted to the Congress.
    Defines terms.

Section 3. Authorization of appropriations

    Authorizes $250 million for fiscal year 2004 and each year 
through fiscal year 2008.

                         VIII. Committee Views

    The Committee believes that our continued economic growth 
and competitiveness depend in large part on advances in science 
and technology and our ability to produce a technologically 
sophisticated workforce. Yet the Committee has concluded that, 
despite the growing federal investment in programs designed to 
strengthen MSIs, the disparity in access to, and use of, 
technology between MSIs and other institutions of higher 
education limits the ability of MSIs to graduate technically 
literate students and contribute positively to the fields of 
science, mathematics, engineering and technology.
    The program authorized by this Act is designed not only to 
acquire technology but also to ensure that the new technology 
is used to improve education. In addition, this Act provides 
opportunities for MSIs to determine the best strategies to 
build and maintain their technology infrastructures through 
annual meetings with other grantees.
    As initially conceived, this program was placed at the 
National Science Foundation (NSF). The Committee strongly 
opposed that placement because the mission of the agency does 
not include the acquisition of technology that is unrelated to 
scientific research. Moreover, the Committee was also concerned 
that the placement of the program at NSF would put other 
education and outreach programs at risk, including those 
designed to increase the participation of women and minorities 
in the sciences. The Committee believes placement of the 
program within the Technology Administration at the Department 
of Commerce, as reflected in H.R. 2801, as amended, is a better 
fit.
    While the Committee believes that the Minority Serving 
Institution Digital and Wireless Technology Act of 2003 will 
help provide important seed money to address the technology 
needs of MSIs, the legislation itself is not a ``silver 
bullet.'' The Committee recognizes that the effective use of 
technology in educational settings is expensive. It will take a 
coordinated effort--one that involves institutions, 
governments, and the private sector--to motivate and train more 
students to bridge the technology divide. To that end, the 
Committee urges MSIs to adopt and implement strategies that 
have been successful--such as working in collaboration with 
businesses and other institutions of higher education--to use 
its technology resources efficiently and maintain its 
infrastructure in an appropriate manner. For that reason, the 
Committee included the development of a long-term strategic 
plan for the acquisition and use of technology as an allowable 
use of funds under this program and urges MSIs to take 
advantage of this provision to ensure that limited resources 
are used effectively.
    The Committee anticipates that many MSIs receiving grants 
under this program will use the funds to acquire 
instrumentation, enhance infrastructure and/or strengthen 
existing digital wireless networking technology at their 
institutions, but expects such funds to also be used to improve 
teaching and learning for students, faculty and administrators. 
In particular, the Committee emphasizes the special 
contribution that technology can make in strengthening academic 
programs, including mathematics, science, engineering and 
technology and teacher preparation, at eligible institutions.
    For the purposes of the application and review procedures, 
the Committee expects the Under Secretary to ensure that 
members of review panels include representatives of MSIs and 
others who are knowledgeable about the technology needs of the 
eligible institutions. The Committee believes that the review 
panels should include individuals who are conversant with the 
particular mission of MSIs. In so doing, the Committee hopes to 
encourage greater participation among MSIs and their 
representatives on the review panel and in the program, while 
guarding against conflicts of interest.
    The Committee believes that the review panels serve an 
important role in providing advice to the Under Secretary about 
the quality and merit of an application submitted by MSIs. To 
ensure that the Under Secretary receives the best possible 
advice, it is the Committee's view that these panels should 
include a diverse range of experts knowledgeable about both the 
technology being sought and the implementation of this 
technology at education institutions. For that reason, the 
Committee expects the membership on these panels to include (in 
addition to representatives of minority-serving institutions) 
experts in information technology education and training, 
hardware, networking, both in academic and industrial settings; 
and Chief Information Officers from academic institutions and 
industry.
    The Committee requires the Under Secretary to convene an 
annual meeting of grantees. It is the Committee's view that 
this should serve as an opportunity not just to foster 
collaboration and capacity building, as required by the 
program, but also to build relationships between the Department 
of Commerce and the MSI community.
    With respect to the matching requirement, the Committee 
urges all applicants--including those with little or no 
endowment--to seek additional funds from non-Federal sources, 
including business, to maximize the investment in technology 
and technology education at their institution. The Committee 
believes this is important to maintaining the technological 
edge of the recipient institutions and to keeping faculty and 
students current after the Federal contribution expires. Yet, 
the Committee appreciates the financial circumstances of many 
MSIs and, for that reason, waives the required match for those 
with an endowment equal to or less than $50 million.
    In making awards, the Committee seeks to ensure that all 
eligible institutions are able to share in the Federal funding. 
For that reason, the Committee limited the number of grant 
funds in excess of $2.5 million that any one institution could 
receive during the 5-year authorization. It is not the 
Committee's intention to establish a maximum grant. Rather, the 
Committee seeks to ensure that the full range of MSIs--urban 
and rural, public and private, 2-year and 4-year--are able to 
compete effectively for grants under this program, with 
priority given to institutions with a demonstrated need for 
assistance.
    Because there is not sufficient data on how best to help 
MSIs catch up to other institutions of higher education, the 
Committee believes that accurate reporting on the use of funds 
is an important requirement of the program. Therefore, each 
grantee must annually report on its use of the grant, and the 
Under Secretary must contract with the National Academy of 
Public Administration to conduct an independent assessment of 
the program. The Committee expects these reports both to inform 
the efforts of MSIs and other institutions of higher education 
on how best to improve access to technology and to evaluate the 
effectiveness of the program in improving education and 
training at MSIs.
    During the full committee markup, some Committee members 
expressed concern about other populations and institutions that 
might also benefit from assistance under this program. The 
Committee recognizes that other institutions of higher 
education with unmet technology needs also serve statistically 
significant numbers and percentages of minority and low-income 
students and appreciates the fact that the digital divide 
includes disparities in socioeconomic status and educational 
attainment. For that reason, the Committee was careful to 
include so called ``majority-minority institutions'', or 
institutions with large low-income minority populations that 
otherwise do not qualify as a HBCU, HSI, or Tribal Serving 
Institution among those institutions that are eligible for 
assistance under this program.
    In addition, the Committee acknowledges that some Members 
are interested in establishing additional categories of 
minority populations, such as Asian Americans, for the purposes 
of this program. While recognizing that some minority groups, 
like Asian Americans, are an important part of our society, the 
Committee was disinclined to include them as a new category 
under this program because too little data was available on the 
number of low-income Asian American students at institutions of 
higher education and the types of institutions that may benefit 
from this new designation. To that end, the Committee directs 
the Under Secretary, in consultation with the Department of 
Education, to determine the number of institutions serving 
significant Asian American populations. The Committee stresses 
that race is but one factor in determining the eligibility of 
an institution under this Act and seeks to ensure that Federal 
funds are not inappropriately targeted to otherwise wealthy, 
digitally well-connected institutions.

                           IX. Cost Estimate

    A cost estimate and comparison prepared by the Director of 
the Congressional Budget Office under section 402 of the 
Congressional Budget Act of 1974 has been timely submitted to 
the Committee on Science prior to the filing of this report and 
is included in Section X of this report pursuant to House Rule 
XIII, clause 3(c)(3).
    H.R. 2801 does not contain new budget authority, credit 
authority, or changes in revenues or tax expenditures. Assuming 
that the sums authorized under the bill are appropriated, H.R. 
2801 does authorize additional discretionary spending, as 
described in the Congressional Budget Office report on the 
bill, which is contained in Section X of this report.

              X. Congressional Budget Office Cost Estimate

                                     U.S. Congress,
                               Congressional Budget Office,
                                     Washington, DC, July 25, 2003.
Hon. Sherwood L. Boehlert,
Chairman, Committee on Science,
House of Representatives, Washington, DC.
    Dear Mr. Chairman: The Congressional Budget Office has 
prepared the enclosed cost estimate for H.R. 2801, the Minority 
Serving Institution Digital and Wireless Technology Opportunity 
Act of 2003.
    If you wish further details on this estimate, we will be 
pleased to provide them. The CBO staff contacts are Melissa 
Zimmerman and Jenny Lin.
            Sincerely,
                                         Robert A. Sunshine
                               (For Douglas Holtz-Eakin, Director).
    Enclosure.

H.R. 2801--Minority Serving Institution Digital and Wireless Technology 
        Opportunity Act of 2003

    Summary: H.R. 2801 would create a new grant program for 
educational institutions that serve minority students within 
the Department of Commerce's (DOC's) Technology Administration. 
Eligible institutions could use the funds to improve 
instructional capabilities and acquire digital and wireless 
communication and information technology. The bill would 
authorize the appropriation of $250 million for each of fiscal 
years 2004 through 2008 for this program and would require 
grant recipients to provide matching funds under certain 
conditions.
    Assuming appropriation of the authorized amounts, CBO 
estimates that implementing H.R. 2801 would cost $823 million 
over the 2004-2008 period. CBO estimates that enacting this 
bill would have no effect on direct spending or revenues.
    H.R. 2801 contains no intergovernmental or private-sector 
mandates as defined in the Unfunded Mandates Reform Act (UMRA). 
Any costs incurred by state, local, or tribal governments would 
be subject to conditions of aid and thus voluntary.
    Estimated cost to the Federal Government: The estimated 
budgetary impact of H.R. 2801 is shown in the following table. 
For this estimate, CBO assumes that the amounts authorized will 
be appropriated near the start of each fiscal year and that the 
outlays will occur at rates similar to those of other DOC 
programs. The costs of this legislation fall within budget 
function 370 (commerce and housing credit).

----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                                                  By fiscal year, in millions of dollars--
                                                          ------------------------------------------------------
                                                              2004       2005       2006       2007       2008
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
                                        SPENDING SUBJECT TO APPROPRIATION

Authorization Level......................................        250        250        250        250        250
Estimated Outlays........................................         30        130        200        228        235
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Estimated impact on state, local, and tribal governments: 
H.R. 2801 contains no intergovernmental mandates as defined in 
UMRA. Any costs incurred by state, local, or tribal governments 
would be the result of complying with federal grant conditions 
and would be voluntary. The bill would primarily benefit 
educational institutions--including public institutions--that 
serve minorities, members of Native American Tribes, and 
disadvantaged students. Assuming that approximately 65 percent 
of such institutions are public or tribal institutions, H.R. 
2801 would authorize grants to state, local, or tribal 
governments that would total about $160 million per year.
    Estimated impact on the private sector: This bill contains 
no new private-sector mandates as defined in UMRA.
    Previous CBO estimate: On March 18, 2003, CBO transmitted a 
cost estimate for S. 196, the Digital and Wireless Network 
Technology Program Act of 2003, as ordered reported by the 
Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation on 
March 13, 2003. The two pieces of legislation are similar, and 
our cost estimates are the same.
    Estimate prepared by: Federal Costs: Melissa Zimmerman and 
Jenny Lin; Impact on State, Local, and Tribal Governments: 
Sarah Puro; and Impact on the Private Sector: Paige Piper/Bach.
    Estimate approved by: Peter H. Fontaine, Deputy Assistant 
Director for Budget Analysis.

                  XI. Compliance With Public Law 104-4

    H.R. 2801 contains no unfunded mandates.

         XII. Committee Oversight Findings and Recommendations

    The Committee on Science's oversight findings and 
recommendations are reflected in the body of this report.

      XIII. Statement on General Performance Goals and Objectives

    Pursuant to clause (3)(c) of House rule XIII, the goals of 
H.R. 2801 are to assist minority serving institutions in 
acquiring, and augmenting their use of, digital and wireless 
networking technologies to improve the quality and delivery of 
educational services at their institutions.
    The Committee requires that all of the programs authorized 
under the Minority Serving Institution Digital and Wireless 
Networking Opportunity Act be awarded on a competitive basis. 
Informed by the recommendations of a review panel, this process 
is expected to ensure that funds are awarded to build the 
technology infrastructure at the full range of minority serving 
institutions, with a priority for demonstrated need for 
assistance. While improving the technology infrastructure is a 
key component of this legislation, it is imperative that this 
technology be used to improve the teaching and learning of 
students, faculty and administrators. In fact, all efforts to 
acquire this technology should be supported with parallel 
efforts to use such technology to improve the quality and 
delivery of educational services at the minority serving 
institutions.
    Given the limited amount of data on the specific technology 
needs of many minority serving institutions--and the 
significant investment authorized by this program--the bill 
requires all minority serving institutions receiving assistance 
under this program to be subjected to a rigorous assessment and 
evaluation of how the money is spent in order to collect and 
disseminate information on best practices.

                XIV. Constitutional Authority Statement

    Article I, section 8 of the Constitution of the United 
States grants Congress the authority to enact H.R. 2801.

                XV. Federal Advisory Committee Statement

    The functions of the advisory committee established by H.R. 
2801 are not currently being nor could they be performed by one 
or more agencies or by enlarging the mandate of another 
existing advisory committee.

                 XVI. Congressional Accountability Act

    The Committee finds that H.R. 2801 does not relate to the 
terms and conditions of employment or access to public services 
or accommodations within the meaning of section 102(b)(3) of 
the Congressional Accountability Act (Public Law 104-1).

      XVII. Statement on Preemption of State, Local, or Tribal Law

    This bill is not intended to preempt any state, local, or 
tribal law.

         Changes in Existing Law Made by the Bill, as Reported

  In compliance with clause 3(e) of rule XIII of the Rules of 
the House of Representatives, changes in existing law made by 
the bill, as reported, are shown as follows (and new matter is 
printed in italic existing law in which no change is proposed 
is shown in roman):

STEVENSON-WYDLER TECHNOLOGY INNOVATION ACT OF 1980

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *



SEC. 5. COMMERCE AND TECHNOLOGICAL INNOVATION.

  (a)  * * *

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *

  (g) Minority Serving Institution Digital and Wireless 
Technology Opportunity Program.--
          (1) In general.--The Secretary, acting through the 
        Under Secretary, shall establish a Minority Serving 
        Institution Digital and Wireless Technology Opportunity 
        Program to assist eligible institutions in acquiring, 
        and augmenting their use of, digital and wireless 
        networking technologies to improve the quality and 
        delivery of educational services at eligible 
        institutions.
          (2) Authorized activities.--An eligible institution 
        may use a grant, cooperative agreement, or contract 
        awarded under this subsection--
                  (A) to acquire equipment, instrumentation, 
                networking capability, hardware and software, 
                digital network technology, wireless 
                technology, and infrastructure to further the 
                objective of the Program described in paragraph 
                (1);
                  (B) to develop and provide training, 
                education, and professional development 
                programs, including faculty development, to 
                increase the use of, and usefulness of, digital 
                and wireless networking technology;
                  (C) to provide teacher education, including 
                the provision of preservice teacher training 
                and in-service professional development at 
                eligible institutions, library and media 
                specialist training, and preschool and teacher 
                aid certification to individuals who seek to 
                acquire or enhance technology skills in order 
                to use digital and wireless networking 
                technology in the classroom or instructional 
                process, including instruction in science, 
                mathematics, engineering, and technology 
                subjects;
                  (D) to obtain capacity-building technical 
                assistance, including through remote technical 
                support, technical assistance workshops, and 
                distance learning services; and
                  (E) to foster the use of digital and wireless 
                networking technology to improve research and 
                education, including scientific, mathematics, 
                engineering, and technology instruction.
          (3) Application and review procedures.--
                  (A) In general.--To be eligible to receive a 
                grant, cooperative agreement, or contract under 
                this subsection, an eligible institution shall 
                submit an application to the Under Secretary at 
                such time, in such manner, and containing such 
                information as the Under Secretary may require. 
                Such application, at a minimum, shall include a 
                description of how the funds will be used, 
                including a description of any digital and 
                wireless networking technology to be acquired, 
                and a description of how the institution will 
                ensure that digital and wireless networking 
                will be made accessible to, and employed by, 
                students, faculty, and administrators. The 
                Under Secretary, consistent with subparagraph 
                (C) and in consultation with the advisory 
                council established under subparagraph (B), 
                shall establish procedures to review such 
                applications. The Under Secretary shall publish 
                the application requirements and review 
                criteria in the Federal Register, along with a 
                statement describing the availability of funds.
                  (B) Advisory council.--The Under Secretary 
                shall establish an advisory council to advise 
                the Under Secretary on the best approaches to 
                encourage maximum participation by eligible 
                institutions in the program established under 
                paragraph (1), and on the procedures to review 
                proposals submitted to theprogram. In selecting 
the members of the advisory council, the Under Secretary shall consult 
with representatives of appropriate organizations, including 
representatives of eligible institutions, to ensure that the membership 
of the advisory council includes representatives of minority businesses 
and eligible institution communities. The Under Secretary shall also 
consult with experts in digital and wireless networking technology to 
ensure that such expertise is represented on the advisory council.
                  (C) Review panels.--Each application 
                submitted under this subsection by an eligible 
                institution shall be reviewed by a panel of 
                individuals selected by the Under Secretary to 
                judge the quality and merit of the proposal, 
                including the extent to which the eligible 
                institution can effectively and successfully 
                utilize the proposed grant, cooperative 
                agreement, or contract to carry out the program 
                described in paragraph (1). The Under Secretary 
                shall ensure that the review panels include 
                representatives of minority serving 
                institutions and others who are knowledgeable 
                about eligible institutions and technology 
                issues. The Under Secretary shall ensure that 
                no individual assigned under this subsection to 
                review any application has a conflict of 
                interest with regard to that application. The 
                Under Secretary shall take into consideration 
                the recommendations of the review panel in 
                determining whether to award a grant, 
                cooperative agreement, or contract to an 
                eligible institution.
                  (D) Information dissemination.--The Under 
                Secretary shall convene an annual meeting of 
                eligible institutions receiving grants, 
                cooperative agreements, or contracts under this 
                subsection to foster collaboration and 
                capacity-building activities among eligible 
                institutions.
                  (E) Matching requirement.--The Under 
                Secretary may not award a grant, cooperative 
                agreement, or contract to an eligible 
                institution under this subsection unless such 
                institution agrees that, with respect to the 
                costs incurred by the institution in carrying 
                out the program for which the grant, 
                cooperative agreement, or contract was awarded, 
                such institution shall make available, 
                directly, or through donations from public or 
                private entities, non-Federal contributions in 
                an amount equal to one-quarter of the grant, 
                cooperative agreement, or contract awarded by 
                the Under Secretary, or $500,000, whichever is 
                the lesser amount. The Under Secretary shall 
                waive the matching requirement for any 
                institution or consortium with no endowment, or 
                an endowment that has a current dollar value 
                lower than $50,000,000.
                  (F) Awards.--
                          (i) Limitation.--An eligible 
                        institution that receives a grant, 
                        cooperative agreement, or contract 
                        under this subsection that exceeds 
                        $2,500,000 shall not be eligible to 
                        receive another grant, cooperative 
                        agreement, or contract.
                          (ii) Consortia.--Grants, cooperative 
                        agreements, and contracts may only be 
                        awarded to eligible institutions. 
                        Eligible institutions may seek funding 
                        under this subsection for consortia 
                        which may include other eligible 
                        institutions, a State or a State 
                        education agency, local education 
                        agencies, institutions of higher 
                        education, community-based 
                        organizations, national nonprofit 
                        organizations, or businesses, including 
                        minority businesses.
                          (iii) Planning grants.--The Under 
                        Secretary may provide funds to develop 
                        strategic plans to implement such 
                        grants, cooperative agreements, or 
                        contracts.
                          (iv) Institutional diversity.--In 
                        awarding grants, cooperative 
                        agreements, and contracts to eligible 
                        institutions, the Under Secretary shall 
                        ensure, to the extent practicable, that 
                        awards are made to all types of 
                        institutions eligible for assistance 
                        under this subsection.
                          (v) Need.--In awarding funds under 
                        this subsection, the Under Secretary 
                        shall give priority to the institution 
                        with the greatest demonstrated need for 
                        assistance.
                  (G) Annual report and evaluation.--
                          (i) Annual report required from 
                        recipients.--Each institution that 
                        receives a grant, cooperative 
                        agreement, or contract awarded under 
                        this subsection shall provide an annual 
                        report to the Under Secretary on its 
                        use of the grant, cooperative 
                        agreement, or contract.
                          (ii) Independent assessment.--Not 
                        later than 6 months after the date of 
                        enactment of this subsection, the Under 
                        Secretary shall enter into a contract 
                        with the National Academy of Public 
                        Administration to conduct periodic 
                        assessments of the program. The 
                        Assessments shall be conducted once 
                        every 3 years during the 10-year period 
                        following the enactment of this 
                        subsection. The assessments shall 
                        include an evaluation of the 
                        effectiveness of the program in 
                        improving the education and training of 
                        students, faculty and staff at eligible 
                        institutions that have been awarded 
                        grants, cooperative agreements, or 
                        contracts under the program; an 
                        evaluation of the effectiveness of the 
                        program in improving access to, and 
                        familiarity with, digital and wireless 
                        networking technology for students, 
                        faculty, and staff at all eligible 
                        institutions; an evaluation of the 
                        procedures established under paragraph 
                        (3)(A); and recommendations for 
                        improving theprogram, including 
recommendations concerning the continuing need for Federal support. In 
carrying out its assessments, the National Academy of Public 
Administration shall review the reports submitted to the Under 
Secretary under clause (i).
                          (iii) Report to congress.--Upon 
                        completion of each independent 
                        assessment carried out under clause 
                        (ii), the Under Secretary shall 
                        transmit the assessment to Congress 
                        along with a summary of the Under 
                        Secretary's plans, if any, to implement 
                        the recommendations of the National 
                        Academy of Public Administration.
                  (H) Definitions.--In this subsection:
                          (i) Digital and wireless networking 
                        technology.--The term ``digital and 
                        wireless networking technology'' means 
                        computer and communications equipment 
                        and software that facilitates the 
                        transmission of information in a 
                        digital format.
                          (ii) Eligible institution.--The term 
                        ``eligible institution'' means an 
                        institution that is--
                                  (I) a historically Black 
                                college or university that is a 
                                part B institution, as defined 
                                in section 322(2) of the Higher 
                                Education Act of 1965 (20 
                                U.S.C. 1061(2)), an institution 
                                described in section 
                                326(e)(1)(A), (B), or (C) of 
                                that Act (20 U.S.C. 
                                1063b(e)(1)(A), (B), or (C)), 
                                or a consortium of institutions 
                                described in this subparagraph;
                                  (II) a Hispanic-serving 
                                institution, as defined in 
                                section 502(a)(5) of the Higher 
                                Education Act of 1965 (20 
                                U.S.C. 1101a(a)(5));
                                  (III) a tribally controlled 
                                college or university, as 
                                defined in section 316(b)(3) of 
                                the Higher Education Act of 
                                1965 (20 U.S.C. 1059c(b)(3));
                                  (IV) an Alaska Native-serving 
                                institution under section 
                                317(b) of the Higher Education 
                                Act of 1965 (20 U.S.C. 
                                1059d(b));
                                  (V) a Native Hawaiian-serving 
                                institution under section 
                                317(b) of the Higher Education 
                                Act of 1965 (20 U.S.C. 
                                1059d(b)); or
                                  (VI) an institution of higher 
                                education (as defined in 
                                section 365 of the Higher 
                                Education Act of 1965 (20 
                                U.S.C. 1067k)) with an 
                                enrollment of needy students 
                                (as defined in section 312(d) 
                                of the Higher Education Act of 
                                1965 (20 U.S.C. 1058(d)).
                          (iii) Institution of higher 
                        education.--The term ``institution of 
                        higher education'' has the meaning 
                        given the term in section 101 of the 
                        Higher Education Act of 1965 (20 U.S.C. 
                        1001).
                          (iv) Local educational agency.--The 
                        term ``local educational agency'' has 
                        the meaning given the term in section 
                        9101 of the Elementary and Secondary 
                        Education Act of 1965 (20 U.S.C. 7801).
                          (v) Minority business.--The term 
                        ``minority business'' includes HUBZone 
                        small business concerns (as defined in 
                        section 3(p) of the Small Business Act 
                        (15 U.S.C. 632(p)).
                          (vi) Minority individual.--The term 
                        ``minority individual'' means an 
                        American Indian, Alaskan Native, Black 
                        (not of Hispanic origin), Hispanic 
                        (including persons of Mexican, Puerto 
                        Rican, Cuban and Central or South 
                        American origin), or Pacific Islander 
                        individual.
                          (vii) State.--The term ``State'' has 
                        the meaning given the term in section 
                        9101 of the Elementary and Secondary 
                        Education Act of 1965 (20 U.S.C. 7801).
                          (viii) State educational agency.--The 
                        term ``State educational agency'' has 
                        the meaning given the term in section 
                        9101 of the Elementary and Secondary 
                        Education Act of 1965 (20 U.S.C. 7801).

           *       *       *       *       *       *       *


                     XIX. Committee Recommendations

    On July 22, 2003, a quorum being present, the Committee on 
Science favorably reported the Minority Serving Institution 
Digital and Wireless Technology Opportunity Act, by a voice 
vote, and recommended its enactment.

                           XX. MINORITY VIEWS

    We commend the Committee on Science for reporting H.R. 2801 
with broad bipartisan support. This bill creates a technology 
partnership between the Federal Government and America's 
Minority-Serving Institutions (MSIs) to build a bridge across 
the digital divide for this group of institutions and the 
students they serve. Achieving the goals of this legislation 
may be the most significant challenge facing the Nation and 
these colleges and universities in the 21st century.
    The Nation's Historically Black Colleges and Universities 
(HBCUs), and its other MSIs offer a wealth of human resources 
and the necessary talent to continue to strengthen and benefit 
our country. These institutions are noted for their consistent 
standards of excellence and outstanding achievements. It is a 
simple fact that they produce the lion's share of minority 
public school teachers, in addition to their noteworthy 
production of minority scientists and engineers. Collectively 
and individually, these colleges and universities are committed 
to providing the highest quality education for students who 
more often than not, do not have the social, educational, and 
financial advantages of other college-bound populations.
    As is the case with all institutions of higher education, 
minority-serving institutions operate in an increasingly 
competitive academic and technology-focused environment. 
Campus-wide, faculty, staff and students are expected to 
conduct business and engage in academic and research pursuits 
using state-of-the-art facilities and technology. Too 
frequently, MSIs lack the institutional resources to acquire 
and provide the technology infrastructure and instrumentation 
necessary to train faculty to fully integrate technology 
throughout the curriculum, and to provide the highest quality 
learning experiences for their students. Moreover, they also 
could benefit from additional resources to train staff to 
administer and maintain digital, wireless and telecommunication 
systems that support the academic and day-to-day operations.
    Looking at the present day and the future workforce, we 
cannot underestimate the value of the development of minority 
human capital to the country's overall success. Strengthening 
the technology infrastructure at MSIs is critical given the 
role these institutions must play in training individuals who 
represent a growing percentage of our postsecondary student 
population and the workforce that is required to be 
technologically literate and skilled. For this reason, H.R. 
2801 is all the more important in ensuring not only the future 
prosperity of America, but also in raising the educational 
expectations of students needing the skill sets to be 
competitive to succeed in today's world.
    Notwithstanding the extraordinary merit of H.R. 2801, we 
are concerned by one aspect of the bill, as reported. It 
specifies that the Secretary of Commerce shall establish the 
Minority Serving Institution Digital and Wireless Technology 
Opportunity program by ``acting through the Under Secretary 
[for Technology]''. More commonly, the agency head, in this 
case the Secretary, is designated as the person authorized to 
carry out a program authorized by Congress. The Secretary has 
the discretion to delegate authority to administer an 
authorized program. Designating a lesser department official--
whose title or position might be subsequently eliminated or 
whose title may be changed--could place the program in 
administrative limbo or at risk. Some might even interpret the 
designation of a lesser departmental official as undermining 
the significance of this important program. I will work to 
modify the bill as it moves forward in the legislative process 
to explicitly charge the Secretary to establish the program.

                                   Eddie Bernice Johnson.
                                   Sheila Jackson-Lee.

             XXI. Proceedings of the Full Committee Markup

    The Committee met, pursuant to other business, in room 2318 
of the Rayburn House Office Building, Hon. Sherwood D. Boehlert 
(chairman of the committee) presiding.
    Chairman Boehlert. The next item on the docket is H.R. 
2801. I ask unanimous consent that the Subcommittee on Research 
be discharged from the further consideration of H.R. 2801 and 
ask for its immediate consideration at full Committee and, 
without objection, it is so ordered.
    We will now consider the bill H.R. 2801, the Minority 
Serving Institution Digital and Wireless Technology Opportunity 
Act of 2003, and now, it is my pleasure to recognize one of the 
driving forces behind this very important and significant 
legislation, Mr. Forbes, for 5 minutes.
    Mr. Forbes. Thank you, Mr. Chairman. Mr. Chairman, full 
access to technology has become a standard, not abundance, in 
how we communicate and do our jobs every day. Right now, 60 
percent of all jobs require information technology skills and 
information technology jobs pay significantly higher than jobs 
in non-technology-related fields, yet minority-serving 
institutions often lack the basic information and digital 
technology infrastructure needed to provide their students the 
necessary skills and access to compete and quality for 
America's best-paying jobs.
    H.R. 2801 would help provide essential resources to address 
the technology gap that exists at many minority-serving 
institutions by providing $250 million in grants to 
historically black colleges and universities, Hispanic-serving 
institutions and tribal colleges and universities.
    The program would offer opportunities to these institutions 
for activities such as computer acquisition, campus wiring and 
technology training. Each of these activities is an important 
step toward bridging the digital divide. A recent article 
published in the Chronicle of Higher Education highlights the 
need for this legislation. At the University of Richmond, there 
are 62 people to assist with the development, use and 
maintenance of campus information technology. At Virginia 
Union, an historically black college with half the enrollment 
of the University of Richmond, there is a computing staff of 
only 4 for the entire school. At Virginia State University, 
which is located in my district, only 10 percent of the 
students own computers, while 96 percent of the students own 
computers at the University of Richmond.
    A study completed by the Department of Commerce and the 
National Association for Equal Opportunity in Higher Education 
indicates that no historically black college or university 
requires computer ownership for their undergraduate students. 
Thirteen HBCUs reported having no students owning their own 
personal computer. Over 70 percent of students at historically 
black colleges and universities rely on the college or 
university to provide computers, but only 50 percent of those 
universities can provide their students with access to 
computers.
    While this study did not address the needs of other MSIs, 
there is anecdotal evidence that other MSIs have the same 
problems at those found at HBCUs. This legislation is a start 
in the right direction. By addressing the technology 
deficiencies that exist at minority-serving institutions and 
increasing access to technology, we can provide our young 
people with the tools to success in college and life. I would 
like to thank Senator Allen and our Senate colleagues who 
passed similar legislation 97 to nothing. I would also like to 
thank Congressman Ed Towns for all of his hard work on this 
legislation, and Mr. Chairman, I thank you for scheduling this 
bill for markup and for the staff for the hard work they put in 
to get us to this point.
    I urge all our members to support this worthwhile 
legislation.
    Chairman Boehlert. And thank you not only for your hard 
work, but for your leadership. It is really appreciated.
    Mr. Smith of Michigan. Mr. Chairman.
    Chairman Boehlert. Mr. Smith. First, I want to recognize--
is it a parliamentary question?
    Mr. Smith of Michigan. It is a comment, Mr. Chairman, 
forthe record, that you indicated that your were discharging our 
Research Subcommittee, as I understood it, of the bill. Actually, the 
Research Subcommittee held hearings on a similar bill, 2183. This bill 
is new legislation that takes into consideration a compromise language 
that was agreed to on the bill.
    Chairman Boehlert. Thank you for that intervention. I do 
appreciate it. The records is clarified. The Chair recognizes 
Ms. Johnson.
    Ms. Johnson. Thank you very much, Mr. Chairman, and let me 
thank Mr. Forbes for carrying this this particular time. For 
the last three or four years, I worked with Mr. Towns and 
Senator Allen on this legislation, and would like very much to 
have the two pieces of legislation combined so that Mr. Towns 
can get his rightful credit.
    Since we were able to reach an agreement that led to this 
very bill that we are marking up today, there is an important 
issue that needs to be addressed. Throughout the proposed bill, 
references are made to ``acting through the Undersecretary'' or 
to ``Undersecretary'' as a primary official in the Department 
of Commerce, who will administer the Minority-Serving 
Institutions Digital and Wireless Technology Opportunity 
Program. The Secretary of Commerce is the only Cabinet official 
and Constitutionally-authorized official that can administer 
programs in the Department of Commerce.
    Traditionally, the Agency head, in this case, the 
Secretary, is designated as the person authorized to carry out 
the program authorized by the Congress. Following enactment of 
the appropriate legislation, the Secretary in his discretion 
could delegate authority to administer the authorized program. 
We see no need to deviate from the standard procedure. In fact, 
designating a lesser Cabinet official, whose title or position 
might be subsequently eliminated and whose title may be 
changed, could place the program in administrative limbo or at 
risk.
    Some might even interpret the designation of a lesser 
departmental official undermining the significance of this 
important program. All references to the Undersecretary I 
suggest be changed to Secretary. Again, Mr. Chairman, I want to 
thank you for expeditiously calling this for a markup. I am 
pleased that you have agreed to amend this bill so that it may 
include my resolution honoring the African-American scientist, 
and I recommend to my colleagues, if they--if he wishes to 
correct this, the approval--favorably approval of this 
legislation. Thank you.
    Chairman Boehlert. Thank you very much. Without objection, 
all members may place opening statements in the records at this 
point.
    [The statements follow:]

                Statement by Hon. Eddie Bernice Johnson

    Mr. Chairman, I am pleased you called this markup today on such an 
important piece of legislation. As an original cosponsor of this 
legislation, I speak in support of it's favorable consideration by the 
committee today.
    Minority serving institutions will prepare a growing portion of the 
future science and technology workforce, simply because demographics 
dictate that minority students will comprise a greater and greater 
share of the Nation's college-aged population.
    It is in the national interest to ensure that minority serving 
institutions have the capability to provide a quality education for 
their students. This includes the presence of an important 
infrastructure capable of supporting distance learning, research 
collaborations with partner institutions, and remote access to 
educational resources and national research facilities.
    The legislation we will markup today provides funding grants to 
minority serving institutions for information technology upgrades and 
for training faculty and staff to use the technology effectively in 
support of their education and research activities.
    I am very happy that my colleagues, Congressmen Forbes and Town, 
were able to reach an agreement that led to this very bill we are 
marking up today. However, there is an important issue with this bill 
that need to be addressed.
    Throughout the proposed bill references are made to ``acting 
through the Under Secretary'' or to the ``Under Secretary,'' as the 
primary official in the Department of Commerce who will administer the 
Minority Serving Institution Digital and Wireless Technology 
Opportunity program. The Secretary of Commerce is the only cabinet 
official and constitutionally authorized official that can administer 
programs in the Department of Commerce. Traditionally, the agency head, 
in this case the Secretary, is designated as the person authorized to 
carry out a program authorized by the Congress. Following enactment of 
appropriate legislation, the Secretary, in his discretion, could 
delegate authority to administer the authorized program. We see no need 
to deviate from this standard procedure. In fact, designating a lesser 
cabinet official--whose title or position might be subsequently 
eliminated or whose title may be changed--could place the program in 
administrative limbo or at risk. Some might even interpret the 
designation of a lesser departmental official as undermining the 
significance of this important program. All references to ``the Under 
Secretary'' should be changed to ``Secretary.''
    Again, Mr. Chairman, I want to thank you for expeditiously calling 
this markup. I am pleased that you have agreed to amend this bill so 
that it may include my resolution honoring the African American 
Scientist. I recommend H.R. 2801 to my colleagues and seek their 
approval to favorably report the legislation to the house.
                                 ______
                                 

                  Statement of Hon. Jerry F. Costello

    Good morning. Today, the House Science Committee is considering six 
bills for mark-up. Most are non-controversial and receive wide 
bipartisan support.
    However, I have strong reservations regarding H.R. 1085, the NASA 
Flexibility Act of 2003. I believe we must wait for recommendations and 
guidance from the Gehman Commission that will address management 
issues. If we are going to address the problems concerning NASA, we 
need to take into account the goals and vision of NASA and manned space 
flight. I understand that NASA needs to do more to attract and retain 
the best possible workforce; however, I believe we can assist NASA by 
waiting to hear what recommendations the Gehman Commission makes so we 
can address all the management problems affecting NASA and its 
workforce. I believe we must also continue to review NASA's existing 
workforce authority and why it is underutilized.
    Mr. Chairman, instead of rushing to complete this significant 
legislation, I believe we must take a step back and review all our 
options before moving forward on legislation that does not address the 
problem.
    Aside from H.R. 1085, I believe the other pieces of legislation 
have been considered in a bipartisan fashion and expand programs in 
numerous agencies. For example, H.R. 2692, the United States Fire 
Administration (USFA) Authorization Act of 2003, authorizes funding for 
USFA activities, such as training, fire research and public education 
over the next three years. Over the last three decades, America's fire 
safety record has significantly improved. However, there are still 
opportunities for further improvements in our fire safety record, such 
as encouraging the use of sprinkler systems in homes. HR 2692 will lead 
us in the right direction. As a member of the Congressional Fire 
Services Caucus, I am proud to support this legislation.
    Further, I am glad the House Science Committee is moving forward on 
the FAA Research and Development Reauthorization Act of 2003. As a 
conferee to the FAA bill for the Science Committee, I look forward to 
working with my colleagues to enhance the research and development 
programs as laid out in the legislation before this committee.
    Mr. Chairman, I want to thank the committee for all their hard work 
on these important issues and look forward today's proceedings.
                                 ______
                                 

         Opening Statement of Congresswoman Sheila Jackson Lee

    Mr. Chairman, the bill before us today takes a critical step toward 
ensuring that all of our nation's young people have access to the 
education that will make them the leaders of tomorrow. I was pleased to 
cosponsor this legislation, after working with my colleagues and with 
Dr. Fred Humphries of NAFEO and Ms. Stephanie Myers to make it all it 
needs to be. I commend Congressman Forbes and Congressman Towns for 
their leadership on this issue, and you and Ranking Member Hall for 
moving this bill so expeditiously toward the Floor.
    It is good to see improving the computing infrastructure at our 
minority serving institutions (MSIs) getting the attention and 
expertise it deserves. This is an excellent piece of legislation that 
acknowledges the profound nature of the digital divide, and puts forth 
the resources necessary to start to bridge it. The digital divide 
separates the nation's minority serving institutions from other 
universities, but more importantly, it separates them from the vast 
stores of information, of data archived around the world, and separates 
them from potential collaborators and students as well. I applaud the 
other body for voting unanimously 97-0 to pass the Allen bill, which 
will set aside $1.2 billion over the next 5 years at the NSF to tackle 
this enormous problem. I am glad to see the Science Committee showing 
the same commitment.
    This is a classic chicken and egg problem. Without excellent state-
of-the-art computing and networking infrastructure, our HBCUs, tribal 
colleges, Hispanic universities, and those serving other minority 
groups, will never be able to place their students on the cutting edge, 
ready to take leadership positions in their respective fields. They 
will never be able to compete with richer universities for grant money 
for the big research programs. Of course, without that grant money, and 
without rich and powerful alumni, they will never be able to afford to 
purchase the infrastructure they need. We must break this cycle that is 
locking up the potential of these great institutions and their 
students.
    Better connectivity will also let the world tap into the great 
expertise and resources that have been generated in the HBCUs and other 
MSIs over the years.
    I am pleased that several provisions that I discussed with Dr. 
Humphries in the hearing a few weeks ago here in the Science Committee 
were finally incorporated into this bill. Specifically, I am referring 
to the peer review provisions that will ensure that those people making 
decisions of what institutions receive grants, will have an 
appreciation and understanding of the challenges and capabilities of 
our nation's minority serving institutions.
    I hope that our colleagues here in the House display the same level 
of commitment to excellence in education and research as those in the 
Senate, and will support the bill that comes out of this Committee. If 
so, I am confident that this bill will enable our minority students and 
researchers to drive forward the march of science and technology, and 
not be left behind by it.
    Thank you.

    Chairman Boehlert. I ask unanimous consent that the bill be 
considered as read and opened to amendment at any point, and 
that the members proceed with the amendments in the order of 
the roster.
    Before we go to the amendments, without objection, so 
ordered. I will recognize Dr. Ehlers.
    Mr. Ehlers. Thank you, Mr. Chairman. As you commented, this 
bill was considered by the Research Committee. The original 
bill asked that this be operated by the National Science 
Foundation. The Research Subcommittee decided that was not 
appropriate, and that the--a better place for it would be in TA 
in the Department of Commerce. And since that is under the 
jurisdiction of my Subcommittee, this bill should have gone to 
my Subcommittee.
    However, in view of the desire to get it out rapidly, we 
simply worked very intensely, and I want to thank the staff of 
the Environment, Technology, and Standards Subcommittee for 
their spending many hours in the past week to try to get it in 
shape to fit in the Department of Commerce, and I am pleased 
that we were able to work this out.
    It is very important to recognize that information 
technology is a crucial skill for everyone in our workforce. Up 
to 30 percent of U.S. jobs require significant information 
technology skills. It is imperative that all students have 
access and be properly educated in information technology. 
However, many minority-serving institutions lack the 
infrastructure, technical capacity and training to provide 
their students with core competencies in information technology 
skills.
    These minority students and women are a vast, untapped 
talent pool that we must support and cultivate, especially in 
the science and engineering areas, and I have been saying for 
years that America is the only company that throws away about 
half of its potential science and engineering workforce because 
it fails to tap the talents of women and minorities, much more 
so than any other nation does, and we must emulate other 
nations and be equal opportunity on this score.
    I would like to thank the sponsors of the bill, Mr. Forbes 
and Senator Allen, as well as the Committee Chairman, Mr. 
Boehlert, for working with us as we attempted to address this 
digital divide issue. I would also like to thank them for 
working with me to strengthen the program by adding a provision 
to support information technology training for pre-service and 
end service teachers in the science, mathematics, engineering 
and technology fields within these institutions, and 
unfortunately, that portion was left out of the bill, but I 
believe the Chairman is offering an amendment to correct that 
oversight.
    That is also a reason that I support the entire bill, 
because the jobs of the future are going to require a basic 
knowledge of science and mathematics, and if we don't pass this 
bill and implement it, we are once again depriving minorities 
of an opportunity for those good jobs.
    Another aspect of the bill is ensuring that expert review 
panels will consider quality and merit in awarding the grants 
under this program. This is a very expensive program. We are 
talking about $250 million a year for 4 years, and that is a 
lot of money. The original version of the bill did not have 
adequate review and evaluation, and so we included this aspect, 
also ensuring that an independent assessment by the National 
Academy of Public Administration will evaluate the impact and 
effectiveness of the program in improving the IT education of 
students and faculty at the participating institutions.
    I do want to offer one word of caution. Today, on the 
floor, we are considering the Commerce, State and Justice 
Appropriations Bill. The--once again, the Commerce Department 
is suffering under this bill, particularly the scientific 
aspects of it, because too much money is being taken away to 
fund the Justice Department in view of our responsibilities 
with homeland security and the fight against terrorism. No one 
objects to fighting the terrorism and funding the Justice 
Department, but the funding in the Commerce Department is 
simply not adequate, and 70 percent of the Justice Department 
budget is concerned with science. If we add this burden on 
them, we must collectively ensure that the appropriators 
provide the money for this, otherwise, the money simply will 
not be there. The Commerce Department does not have spare 
change, let alone $250 million a year, and so, if we reallywant 
to make this bill work, we are really going to have to work with the 
appropriations process to make certain that the funding is provided.
    With that, Mr. Chairman, I yield back.
    Chairman Boehlert. Thank you very much. The gentleman from 
Pennsylvania, Mr. Weldon.
    Mr. Weldon. Mr. Chairman, just briefly, I want to 
congratulate the distinguished Member from Virginia for an 
outstanding piece of legislation. I solidly and completely, 
enthusiastically support this legislation.
    In our region of Pennsylvania, Delaware, New Jersey and 
Maryland, we are organizing our minority-focused institutions, 
led by Cheney University and Lincoln University, which are 
right near my district, to involve themselves in a greater 
technology initiative. This legislation will help lay the 
foundation for that. It encourages the private sector to become 
involved, which we are doing, and so I think the gentleman is 
right on the mark, and I would echo the comments of Vern Ehlers 
that we have to work the appropriation process now to get some 
funding on the table to implement the ideas in this bill .
    Chairman Boehlert. And we are all committed to that 
proposition. I thank you. If no one else wishes to be heard, 
the first amendment on the roster is the manager's amendment, 
which I will offer. The amendment has been distributed. The 
Clerk will report the amendment.
    The Clerk. Amendment to H.R. 2801, offered by Mr. Boehlert.
    Chairman Boehlert. I ask unanimous consent to dispense with 
the reading. Without objection, it is so ordered. Let me--plain 
and simple, this amendment is designed to clarify that teacher 
training in the use of technology in the classroom should 
include instruction in science, mathematics, engineering and 
technology subjects. Right to the point, plain and simple. 
Anyone seek recognition to discuss that? If not, the question 
is on the amendment. All those in favor say aye. Aye. Opposed, 
nay. The ayes have it. The amendment is passed.
    Anyone else seek recognition for the purpose of amending 
the bill?
    Mr. Honda. Mr. Chairman, I have an amendment after this.
    Chairman Boehlert. Mr. Honda.
    Mr. Honda. Thank you, Mr. Chairman, and I would like to 
thank you for your patience and your indulgence also. I commend 
the offerers of this bill for the work towards the worthy goal 
of providing opportunities to assist minority-serving 
institutions in acquiring and augmenting their use of digital 
and wireless networking technologies to improve the quality and 
delivery of education services at eligible institutions.
    The bill we are marking up today lists a number of classes 
of eligible institutions as defined in the Higher Education Act 
of 1965, to wit, historically black colleges and universities, 
Hispanic-serving institutions, tribal colleges, Alaskan Native 
serving institutions and Native Hawaiian serving institutions.
    Unfortunately, there is--there is currently not a 
definition of Asian-American and Pacific Islander serving 
institutions in the Higher Education Act. H.R. 333, introduced 
by my colleague, Mr. Wu, and myself, which was originally 
introduced by Mr. Underwood in the 107th Congress, would amend 
the Higher Education Act to create such a category.
    Since this bill has not been enacted into law, we must 
offer amendments such as the one that we have today to include 
these institutions among those served by worthy programs such 
as this one.
    Our amendment defines for the purposes of this program 
Asian-American and Pacific Islander serving institutions that 
would be eligible to apply for grant created by this program. I 
recognize that there are several issues that this category 
brings up. If we simply define such institution as having a 
certain percentage of student population comprised of Asian-
American and Pacific Islander students, we open the door to 
many institutions that, quite frankly, do not require the 
assistance of this program that this program is designed to 
provide.
    To try to address this problem, we added an income 
qualification to the definition. However, this will not address 
another concern that members have expressed to me that our 
amendment may be interpreted as changing the Higher Education 
Act, which is beyond this Committee's jurisdiction. To achieve 
this goal, what we really need to do is to advance our bill 
H.R. 333 in the Education Committee, and so I will be working 
towards that.
    I do believe that the bill now offers some flexibility on 
the part of the Secretary to consider institutions not 
explicitly listed in the bill, and I hope that we can work with 
members of both the majority and the minority parties on report 
language and I would seek the cooperation of the Chair that we 
would express, that the sentiment that there are some 
institutions that serve Asian-Americans and Pacific Islanders 
that this bill will eventually encompass.
    Mr. Chair, I would like to ask for unanimous consent to 
withdraw my amendment with the understanding I will be working 
together and wordsmithing the report language.
    [Statement of Michael Honda:]

                      Statement of Hon. Mike Honda

    Mr. Chairman, I have an amendment at the Desk.
    I commend the authors of this bill for their work towards the 
worthy goal of providing opportunities to assist minority serving 
institutions in acquiring and augmenting their use of digital and 
wireless networking technologies to improve the quality and delivery of 
educational services at eligible institutions.
    The bill we are marking up today lists a number of classes of 
eligible institutions as defined in the Higher Education Act of 1965 
(as amended)--Historically Black colleges and universities, Hispanic 
serving institutions, tribal colleges, Alaska Native serving 
institutions, and Native Hawaiian serving institutions.
    Unfortunately, there is currently not a definition of Asian 
American and Pacific Islander serving institutions in the Higher 
Education Act. H.R. 333, introduced by my colleague Mr. Wu and myself, 
which was originally introduced by Mr. Underwood in the 107th Congress, 
would amend the Higher Education Act to create such a category.
    Since this bill has not yet been enacted into law we must offer 
amendments such as the one that Mr. Wu and I are offering today to 
include these institutions among those served by worthy programs such 
as this one. Our amendment defines for the purposes of this program 
``Asian American and Pacific Islander serving institutions'' that would 
be eligible to apply for the grants created by this program.
    I recognize that there are several issues that this category brings 
up. If we simply define such an institution as having a certain 
percentage of the student population comprised of Asian American and 
Pacific Islander students, we open the door to many institutions that, 
quite frankly, do not require the assistance that this program is 
designed to provide. To try to address this problem, we added an income 
qualification to the definition.
    This will not address another concern that Members have expressed 
to me, that our amendment may be interpreted as changing the Higher 
Education Act, which is beyond the Committee's jurisdiction. To achieve 
this goal, what we really need to do is to advance our bill H.R. 333 in 
the Education committee, and I support my colleague Mr. Wu's efforts on 
this front.
    I believe that the bill offers some flexibility on the part of the 
Secretary to consider institutions not explicitly listed in the bill, 
and I hope that we can work with members of both the majority and 
minority parties on report language that would express the sentiment 
that there are some institutions that serve Asian Americans and Pacific 
Islanders that this bill should encompass.

    Chairman Boehlert. Is there any objection to the unanimous 
consent request of the gentleman? Hearing none, so ordered.
    Mr. Smith of Michigan. Mr. Chairman.
    Mr. Honda. Thank you, Mr. Chairman.
    Mr. Smith of Michigan. Mr. Chairman, to your left.
    Chairman Boehlert. Seeks recognition.
    Mr. Smith of Michigan. I would move to strike the last 
word.
    Chairman Boehlert. The chair recognizes Mr. Smith of 
Michigan.
    Mr. Smith of Michigan. Just in reacting to Mr. Honda's 
amendment, I think it does bring to our attention that there 
are many areas that could use the help in this technological 
divide. I think of women in our effort may be in colleges that 
have 70 percent women. I think of community colleges where 
great potential exists, so our goal in narrowing the digital 
divide is helping those students and those institutions that 
need the help.
    Now, there is no question in my mind that traditionally, 
black colleges need the help, but also, there is a lot of other 
schools and a lot of other students that need that help, Mr. 
Chairman, and I would just like to say that directing our 
limited available resources to those most in need should be the 
primary goal of the policy of this Committee.
    Mr. Chairman, I would like to introduce for the record--in 
our Committee, we held a two hour long hearing with three 
witnesses testifying on this bill. The Director of the National 
Science Foundation testified that she did not feel it 
appropriate that this kind of legislation with that 
responsibility be directed toward the National Science 
Foundation. I have a letter sent to the Chairman from Assistant 
Secretary Brenda Baker that says that they would prefer that it 
not be in Commerce either, and it says, and I quote the second 
paragraph: ``I am advised that the financial assistance is 
already available for institutions of higher education, 
including minority-serving institutions, to acquire educational 
technologies, provide educational services, including faculty 
development, use of other technologies through several 
Department of Education programs. In addition, the President's 
Fiscal Year '04 budget supports a number of programs 
administered through the Departments of Education and 
Agriculture to provide financial assistance to improve 
technology instruction and infrastructure at higher educational 
facilities including minority-serving institutions, and 
accordingly, the Secretary says the Administration opposes the 
creation of a duplicative program called for in 2183 that is 
inconsistent with the President's budget.'' And I would move 
that this letter be made part of the record, Mr. Chairman.
    [The information follows:]

        Department of Commerce, the Assistant Secretary for 
            Legislative and Intergovernmental Affairs,
                                     Washington, DC, July 22, 2003.
Hon. Sherwood L. Boehlert,
Chairman, Committee on Science,
House of Representatives, Washington, DC.
    Dear Mr. Chairman: Your Committee is scheduled to mark up 
H.R. 2183, the ``Minority Serving Institution Digital and 
Wireless Technology Opportunity Act of 2003'', on July 22, 
2003. We understand that your Committee has appropriately 
determined that this program is ill-suited for placement in the 
National Science Foundation. We understand that the version of 
the bill that will be considered would create a new grant 
program within the Department of Commerce's Technology 
Administration and would authorize appropriations of $250 
million for each of the next five fiscal years.
    I am advised that financial assistance is already available 
for institutions of higher education, including minority-
serving institutions, to acquire educational technologies and 
provide educational services, including faculty development in 
the use of these technologies, through several Department of 
Education programs. In addition, the President's FY 2004 Budget 
supports a number of programs, administered through the 
Departments of Education and Agriculture, to provide financial 
assistance to improve technology instruction and infrastructure 
at higher-education facilities, including minority-serving 
institutions. Accordingly, the Administration opposes the 
creation of a duplicative program that is inconsistent with the 
President's Budget.
    In addition, I am advised that the Department of Justice 
has raised constitutional concerns about the definition of 
``eligible institution'' in the legislation.
    The Office of Management and Budget advises that there is 
no objection to the submission of this letter from the 
standpoint of the Administration's program.
            Sincerely,
                                                     Brenda Becker.

    Chairman Boehlert. Without objection, so ordered. Thank you 
very much. The Chair now recognizes.
    Ms. Woolsey. Mr. Chairman. She has a----
    Chairman Boehlert. The Chair recognizes Ms. Woolsey for the 
purpose of offering an amendment.
    Ms. Woolsey. I would like to offer Ms. Eddie Bernice 
Johnson's amendment that would add a new section to the bill.
    Chairman Boehlert. The Clerk will report the amendment.
    The Clerk. The amendment to H.R. 2801 offered by Ms. Eddie 
Bernice Johnson of Texas, offered on behalf of Ms. Woolsey.
    Chairman Boehlert. Just the opposite.
    The Clerk. Oh, on behalf of Ms. Woolsey, an amendment 
offered by Ms. Eddie Bernice Johnson of Texas.
    Chairman Boehlert. I ask unanimous consent to dispense with 
the reading. Without objection, so ordered.
    Ms. Woolsey. Thank you, Mr.----
    Chairman Boehlert. Ms. Woolsey is recognized.
    Ms. Woolsey. Thank you, Mr. Chairman. This amendment adds a 
new section to the bill, Section 10, and it just very clearly 
and simply covers the achievements and honors the achievements 
and contributions of African-American scientists, 
mathematicians and inventors, and it is a good fit in this 
bill, and she is very appreciative that it was added to this--
--
    Chairman Boehlert. Thank you very much, and I might add it 
is a good fit. We are in agreement. Who else seeks recognition? 
Ms. Jackson Lee.
    Ms. Jackson Lee. I would like to add my support. It is an 
excellent amendment and it has a good fit to a bill, Mr. 
Chairman, that I would like to thank the Ranking and Chairman 
of this Subcommittee and then the full Committee leadership for 
this legislation. I know that it had a very long journey from 
the area where it was previously placed to the Department of 
Commerce. I believe with the leadership of NAFEO that we are 
moving on steady ground. I am delighted that we answered their 
concerns in negotiation on the question of peer review, meaning 
that their peers would be reviewing their proposals, that there 
is very good funding, that we are addressing a very crucial 
issue, which many of us would like not to admit, and that is 
the digital divide in institutions of higher learning, and so 
this legislation will help with the infrastructure, the 
education capabilities of historically black colleges, Native 
American colleges and others, and as well, create a network 
system where students can communicate with each other and the 
colleges can communicate with each other. This is crucial and I 
believe the amendment of the distinguished lady from Texas will 
add a very strong component to acknowledging those achievements 
of African-American scientists who have gone on before.
    Thank you.
    Chairman Boehlert. I thank the gentlelady. Is there anyone 
else who seeks recognition? if not, the question occurs on the 
amendment. All those in favor, say aye. Opposed, nay. The ayes 
have it, and the amendment is adopted. Are there any further 
amendments? There are none. The vote is on the bill as amended. 
H.R. 2801, the Minority Serving Institution Digital and 
Wireless Technology Opportunity Act of 2003. All those in favor 
say aye. Opposed will say no. In the opinion of the Chair, the 
ayes have it. Now, I will recognize Mr. Hall for a motion.
    Mr. Hall. Mr. Chairman, I move that the Committee favorably 
report H.R. 2801 as amended to the House with a recommendation 
that the bill, as amended, do pass. Furthermore, I move that 
the staff be instructed to prepare the legislative report, make 
necessary technical and conforming changes and that the 
Chairman take all necessary steps to bring the bill before the 
House for consideration.
    Chairman Boehlert. The Chair notes the presence of a 
reporting quorum. The question is on the motion to report the 
bill favorably. Those in favor will say aye. Aye. Opposed, no. 
The ayes have it. The ayes appear to have it, and the bill is 
favorably reported. Without objection, the motion to reconsider 
is laid upon the table. I move that members have two subsequent 
calendar days in which to submit supplemental, minority, or 
additional views on the measure. I move, pursuant to Clause 1 
of Rule 22 of the House that the Committee authorize the 
Chairman to offer such motions as may be necessary in the House 
to go to conference with the Senate on the bill H.R. 2801, or a 
similar Senate bill. Without objection, so ordered.
    [Whereupon, the Committee proceeded to other business.]

                            AMENDMENT ROSTER

H.R. 2801, Minority Serving Institution Digital and Wireless Technology 
        Opportunity Act of 2003

    --Motion to adopt the bill, as amended: agreed to by a 
voice vote.
    --Motion to adopt the bill, as amended: agreed to by a 
voice vote.

------------------------------------------------------------------------
  No.          Sponsor             Description              Results
------------------------------------------------------------------------
1.       Mr. Boehlert......  Amendment would specify  --Adopted by a
                              that educating           voice vote.
                              teachers in science,
                              math, engineering, and
                              technology are among
                              the areas for which
                              funding could be
                              provided.
2.       Mr. Honda.........  Amendment would add to   --Unanimous
                              the list of eligible     consent request
                              institutions--Asian      to withdraw the
                              American and Pacific     amendment; agreed
                              Islander serving         to by a voice
                              institutions.            vote.
3.       Ms. Eddie Bernice   Amendment adds a new     --Adopted by a
          Johnson.            section to the bill:     voice vote.
                              Sec. 10--Achievements
                              and Contributions of
                              African-American
                              Scientists,
                              Mathematicians, and
                              Inventors.
------------------------------------------------------------------------

             Amendment to H.R. 2801 Offered by Mr. Boehlert

    Page 3, line 11, insert ``, including instruction in 
science, mathematics, engineering, and technology subjects'' 
after ``instructional process''.