Report text available as:

  • TXT
  • PDF   (PDF provides a complete and accurate display of this text.) Tip ?

112th Congress                                                   Report
                        HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES
 1st Session                                                    112-272

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

 
  EXPRESSING THE SENSE OF THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES THAT EFFECTIVE 
  SHARING OF PASSENGER INFORMATION FROM INBOUND INTERNATIONAL FLIGHT 
MANIFESTS IS A CRUCIAL COMPONENT OF OUR NATIONAL SECURITY AND THAT THE 
 DEPARTMENT OF HOMELAND SECURITY MUST MAINTAIN THE INFORMATION SHARING 
   STANDARDS REQUIRED UNDER THE 2007 PASSENGER NAME RECORD AGREEMENT 
            BETWEEN THE UNITED STATES AND THE EUROPEAN UNION

                                _______
                                

  November 4, 2011.--Referred to the House Calendar and ordered to be 
                                printed

                                _______
                                

    Mr. King of New York, from the Committee on Homeland Security, 
                        submitted the following

                              R E P O R T

                       [To accompany H. Res. 255]

    The Committee on Homeland Security, to whom was referred 
the resolution (H. Res. 255) expressing the sense of the House 
of Representatives that effective sharing of passenger 
information from inbound international flight manifests is a 
crucial component of our national security and that the 
Department of Homeland Security must maintain the information 
sharing standards required under the 2007 Passenger Name Record 
Agreement between the United States and the European Union, 
having considered the same, report favorably thereon without 
amendment and recommend that the resolution be agreed to.

                                CONTENTS

                                                                   Page
Purpose and Summary..............................................     2
Background and Need for Legislation..............................     2
Hearings.........................................................     3
Committee Consideration..........................................     3
Committee Votes..................................................     3
Committee Oversight Findings.....................................     3
New Budget Authority, Entitlement Authority, and Tax Expenditures     3
Congressional Budget Office Estimate.............................     3
Statement of General Performance Goals and Objectives............     3
Congressional Earmarks, Limited Tax Benefits, and Limited Tariff 
  Benefits.......................................................     3
Federal Mandates Statement.......................................     3
Preemption Clarification.........................................     3
Advisory Committee Statement.....................................     4
Applicability to Legislative Branch..............................     4
Section-by-Section Analysis of the Legislation...................     4
Changes in Existing Law Made by the Bill, as Reported............     4

                          PURPOSE AND SUMMARY

    The purpose of H. Res. 255 is to express the sense of the 
House of Representatives that effective sharing of passenger 
information from inbound international flight manifests is a 
crucial component of our national security and that the 
Department of Homeland Security must maintain the information 
sharing standards required under the 2007 Passenger Name Record 
Agreement between the United States and the European Union.

                  BACKGROUND AND NEED FOR LEGISLATION

    In response to the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001, 
Congress passed several laws to strengthen homeland security, 
including the Aviation and Transportation Security Act of 2001 
(ATSA). In relevant part, ATSA required air carriers entering 
the United States to provide U.S. Customs and Border Protection 
(CBP) with electronic access to Passenger Name Record data 
(PNR) on persons traveling on flights to, from, or through the 
United States. PNR data includes information such as travel 
dates, contact details, means of payment, number of bags, and 
seat number.
    Both the Bush and Obama Administrations concurred that PNR 
data is vital for national security. In 2008 and 2009, PNR 
helped the United States identify individuals with potential 
ties to terrorism in more than 3,000 cases, including the 
November 2008 Mumbai attack plotter, David Headley, and the 
perpetrator of the failed May 2010 Times Square bombing, Faisal 
Shazad. In FY2010, approximately one quarter of those 
individuals denied entry to the United States for having ties 
to terrorism were initially identified through PNR data.
    Following the passage of ATSA, the Department of Homeland 
Security (DHS) began negotiating with the European Union (EU) 
to govern the processing of PNR data subject to EU law. After 
signing provisional agreements in 2002 and 2004, the U.S. and 
the EU reached terms on an agreement in 2007 (the EU-US PNR 
Agreement), which fully complied with EU and U.S. privacy law 
and was scheduled to expire in 2014. However, in 2009, the EU 
enacted the Treaty of Lisbon, which altered its political 
governance and granted new powers to the European Parliament. 
At that time, 24 of 27 nations had ratified the EU-US PNR 
Agreement. As a consequence, EU law now required the European 
Parliament to approve proposed security agreements, like the 
EU-US PNR Agreement. Thereafter, the European Parliament voted 
to reject the current EU-US PNR Agreement. Those negotiations 
remain ongoing.
    The Committee supports the continuation of a PNR agreement 
with robust protections for U.S. citizens and non-citizens. 
Accordingly, on September 21, 2011, the House Homeland Security 
Committee approved a bipartisan resolution (H. Res. 255) 
affirming that the effective sharing of passenger information 
from inbound international flight manifests is crucial to our 
national security and urging DHS to oppose any effort by the EU 
to frustrate counterterrorism cooperation and information 
sharing as reflected in the 2007 EU-US PNR agreement. In May 
2011, the Senate passed a companion resolution.

                                HEARINGS

    No hearings were held on H. Res. 255 in the 112th Congress.


                        COMMITTEE CONSIDERATION

    The Committee met on September 21, 2011, to consider H. 
Res. 255, and ordered the measure to be reported to the House 
with a favorable recommendation, without amendment, by voice 
vote.

                            COMMITTEE VOTES

    Clause 3(b) of rule XIII of the Rules of the House of 
Representatives requires the Committee to list the recorded 
votes on the motion to report legislation and amendments 
thereto.
    No recorded votes were requested during consideration of H. 
Res. 255.

                      COMMITTEE OVERSIGHT FINDINGS

    Pursuant to clause 3(c)(1) of rule XIII of the Rules of the 
House of Representatives, the Committee has held oversight 
hearings and made findings that are reflected in this report.

   NEW BUDGET AUTHORITY, ENTITLEMENT AUTHORITY, AND TAX EXPENDITURES

    In compliance with clause 3(c)(2) of rule XIII of the Rules 
of the House of Representatives, the Committee finds that H. 
Res. 255, would result in no new or increased budget authority, 
entitlement authority, or tax expenditures or revenues.

                  CONGRESSIONAL BUDGET OFFICE ESTIMATE

    Clause 3(c)(3) of rule XIII of the Rules of the House of 
Representatives, and Section 402 of the Congressional Budget 
Act of 1974 do not apply, as H. Res. 255 is not a bill or joint 
resolution.

         STATEMENT OF GENERAL PERFORMANCE GOALS AND OBJECTIVES

    Pursuant to clause 3(c)(4) of rule XIII of the Rules of the 
House of Representatives, H. Res. 255 contains no general 
performance goals, and objectives, including outcome related 
goals and objectives authorized.

   CONGRESSIONAL EARMARKS, LIMITED TAX BENEFITS, AND LIMITED TARIFF 
                                BENEFITS

    In compliance with rule XXI of the Rules of the House of 
Representatives, this bill, as reported, contains no 
congressional earmarks, limited tax benefits, or limited tariff 
benefits as defined in clause 9(e), 9(f), or 9(g) of the rule 
XXI.

                       FEDERAL MANDATES STATEMENT

    H. Res. 255 provides no Federal mandates.

                        PREEMPTION CLARIFICATION

    In compliance with section 423 of the Congressional Budget 
Act of 1974, requiring the report of any Committee on a bill or 
joint resolution to include a statement on the extent to which 
the bill or joint resolution in intended to preempt State, 
local, or Tribal law, the Committee finds that H. Res. 255 does 
not preempt any State, local, or Tribal law.

                      ADVISORY COMMITTEE STATEMENT

    No advisory committees within the meaning of section 5(b) 
of the Federal Advisory Committee Act were created by this 
legislation.

                  APPLICABILITY TO LEGISLATIVE BRANCH

    The Committee finds that the legislation 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.

             SECTION-BY-SECTION ANALYSIS OF THE LEGISLATION

    The Resolution expresses the sense of the House of 
Representatives that effective sharing of passenger information 
from inbound international flight manifests is a crucial 
component of our national security and that the Department of 
Homeland Security must maintain the information sharing 
standards required under the 2007 Passenger Name Record 
Agreement between the United States and the European Union.
    The Resolution resolves that the House of Representatives 
acknowledge the threat posed by terrorists targeting the U.S. 
aviation system, urges the Department of Homeland Security to 
respond to any modification of the passenger name record data 
sharing agreement that degrades security capability with 
stronger security requirements, urges the Department not to 
enter into any agreement that would impose European oversight 
structures on the United States, and strongly urges the 
Department to oppose any effort by the European Union to 
frustrate counterterrorism and information sharing between the 
Department and non-European countries.

         CHANGES IN EXISTING LAW MADE BY THE BILL, AS REPORTED

    H. Res. 255 makes no changes to existing law.