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1st Session HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES Report
Union Calendar No. 230
FIRST ANNUAL REPORT ON THE ACTIVITIES
COMMITTEE ON HOUSE ADMINISTRATION
HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES
ONE HUNDRED THIRTEENTH CONGRESS
together with minority views
December 31, 2013.--Committed to the Committee of the Whole House on
the State of the Union and ordered to be printed
LETTER OF TRANSMITTAL
House of Representatives,
Committee on House Administration,
Washington, DC, December 31, 2013.
Hon. Karen Haas,
Clerk of the House,
Dear Ms. Haas: Pursuant to Rule XI, clause 1, paragraph (d)
of the Rules of the U.S. House of Representatives, I hereby
transmit the First Annual Report on the Activities of the
Committee on House Administration. This report summarizes the
activities of the Committee with respect to its legislative and
oversight responsibilities in the 113th Congress from January
2013 to December 2013.
Candice S. Miller,
Union Calendar No. 230
113th Congress Report
HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES
1st Session 113-312
FIRST ANNUAL REPORT ON THE ACTIVITIES OF THE COMMITTEE ON HOUSE
ADMINISTRATION DURING THE 113TH CONGRESS
December 31, 2013.--Committed to the Committee of the Whole House on
the State of the Union and ordered to be printed
Mrs. Candice S. Miller of Michigan, from the Committee on House
Administration, submitted the following
R E P O R T
The Committee on House Administration (``Committee'') is
charged with the oversight of federal elections and the day-to-
day operations of the House of Representatives.
The Committee on House Administration oversees
appropriations for the salaries and expenses of all House
committees (except for the Committee on Appropriations);
allowance and expenses of House Members, officers, and
administrative offices; and the auditing and settling of these
accounts. The Committee further oversees the employment of
staff for House Members, committees, and stenographers. The
Committee has jurisdiction over the House Library; the statuary
and art in the Capitol; the Franking Commission; the
Congressional Record; accounts of the House; and the assignment
of office space for House Members and committees. The Committee
also has the important duty of overseeing the Capitol Police
and security of the House office buildings and grounds.
Additionally, the Committee's jurisdiction covers the
election of the President and Vice President, House Members,
Delegates, the Resident Commissioner, and Senators as well as
House contested elections, credentials and qualifications of
candidates, corrupt practices, and campaign finance matters in
federal elections. Regarding Member services, the Committee
oversees the House restaurant, parking facilities, and
administration of the House office buildings and of the House
wing of the Capitol. The Committee also deals with the travel
of Members; and the compensation, retirement and other benefits
of Members, officers and employees of Congress. Lastly, the
Committee has jurisdiction over the Library of Congress, the
purchase of books and manuscripts, the Botanic Garden, and the
On January 3, 2013, the House elected, through H. Res. 6,
Representative Candice S. Miller of Michigan as Chairman of the
Committee on House Administration. Also elected to the
Committee was Representative Gregg Harper of Mississippi,
Representative Phil Gingrey of Georgia, Representative Aaron
Schock of Illinois, Representative Todd Rokita of Indiana, and
Representative Rich Nugent of Florida. The three minority
Members elected were Representative Robert A. Brady of
Pennsylvania, the Ranking Minority Member, Representative Zoe
Lofgren of California, and Representative Juan Vargas of
On February 5, 2013, the Committee met to organize for the
113th Congress. During this organizational meeting, the
Committee adopted its rules and oversight plan. During the
113th Congress, the Committee also abolished its subcommittees
allowing for all issues to come before the full Committee.
The Committee on House Administration reports a biennial
primary expense resolution by which standing and select
committees of the House (except the Committee on
Appropriations) are authorized operating funds for each
Congress. During the first three months of each new Congress,
House Rule X, clause 7, provides a temporary authorization for
House committees to continue operations. This temporary
authorization is based on their funding authorizations from the
preceding session and allows committees to organize, adopt
legislative and oversight agendas, and seek spending authority
through the adoption of a primary expense resolution by the
113th Congress Proceedings
To gather the information necessary to create the omnibus
primary expense resolution, the Committee required the standing
and select committees to submit estimates for their expected
expenses for both sessions of the 113th Congress. The Committee
asked that committees provide line-item estimates for the
following expenses: personnel compensation (including salaries
and lump sum payments), overtime, transit benefits, travel,
communications, and printing and reproduction costs. The
Committee also requested that the standing and select
committees estimate their expenses for other services,
including consultant contracts, detailees from executive and
other agencies, training, representational expenses,
specialized training, and miscellaneous expenses. Finally, the
Committee requested budget estimates for the costs of supplies,
materials, and equipment.
In addition to requiring the above information, the
Committee asked that the standing and select committee budget
requests include the possibility of an 11% cut to conform to
the funding cuts required by President Obama's sequestration
order under the Budget Control Act of 2011.
To further gather the information necessary to create the
omnibus primary expense resolution, the Committee convened a
two-day hearing to provide the Chairs and Ranking Members of
the standing and select committees an opportunity to present
and share their views on their respective budget requests for
the 113th Congress.
During the hearing, Members of the Committee asked the
Chairs and Ranking Members if these smaller budget requests
would impact their ability to conduct effective oversight or
pursue their legislative goals.
Members of the Committee also asked the Chairs and Ranking
Members how they were managing and will manage their resources
with equity and prudence. Since the 104th Congress, House
majority leadership and the Chair and Ranking Member of the
Committee have encouraged the Chairs of the standing and select
committees to provide the minority with one-third of committee
staff and/or resources authorized in the primary expense
resolutions. During the hearings, the Committee sought to
ensure that the minority in each committee was treated
equitably in the funding process. Each Ranking Member was asked
if he or she was allocated the traditional one-third share of
committee staff positions and/or committee resources, as
determined by each committee. These exchanges indicated that
committees appear to be in compliance with the traditional
``two-thirds/one-third'' distribution of funds among the
majority and minority.
After the hearing, the Committee used the budget
submissions and Member testimony to create an omnibus expense
resolution, H. Res. 115, introduced by Chairman Miller, to
authorize funding for all committees. The resolution reflected
appropriate cuts from each of the Committee's authorizations to
comply with the appropriations reductions required by President
Obama's sequestration order under the Budget Control Act.
The Committee conducted the hearing on March 5, 2013, and
the hearing continued on March 6, 2013. On March 15, 2013, by
voice vote, the Committee met and agreed to a motion to report
H. Res. 115, the omnibus expense resolution, favorably to the
House without amendment. H. Res. 115 was ordered favorably
reported by the Committee to the House.
The House agreed to H. Res. 115 on March 19, 2013 by a vote
MEMBERS' REPRESENTATIONAL ALLOWANCE
The Committee has jurisdiction over the use of
appropriations from the accounts of the U.S. House of
Representatives for the Members' Representational Allowance
(``MRA'') as well as official travel by Members and staff, and
compensation, retirement and other benefits of Member office
employees. The MRA is the annual authorization made to each
Member of the House to obligate U.S. Treasury funds not to
exceed a certain amount. These funds may be used by the Member
to pay ordinary and necessary business expenses incurred by the
Member and his or her congressional office employees in support
of the conduct of the Member's official and representational
duties on behalf of the district from which the Member is
elected. The annual MRA is available for one legislative year
(i.e., January 3 of one year through January 2 of the following
The MRA is made up of three primary expense components:
personnel compensation, official expenses, and official
(franked) mail expenses. The amount of the MRA varies from
Member to Member based on the distance of a Member's district
from Washington, D.C., the cost to lease federal office space
in a Member's district, and the number of U.S. Postal Service
private delivery stops in a Member's district. The use of funds
in any expense category is not limited by the amount factored
into a corresponding expense component, e.g., a Member may
spend more or less than the amount of the travel component to
travel and from his or her district. Each Member has complete
discretion in budgeting the total amount of his or her MRA as
he or she determines to support the operation of his or her
Washington, D.C., and district congressional offices,
consistent with applicable Federal law and House Rules and
Federal law authorizes the Committee to fix and adjust the
amounts, terms, and conditions of, and other matters relating
to the MRA (including all aspects of official mail) by reason
1. A change in the price of materials, services, or
2. A technological change or other improvement in
office equipment; or
3. An increase in rates of pay under the General
Schedule, e.g., a comparability and/or locality wage
The 2013 MRA amount was initially updated with new rent,
mail, and mileage components to account for the updated
reapportionment and redistricting information after the 2010
Census. Those amounts were measured against the amount
available in the total MRA appropriation and each MRA was
reduced by a proportional amount so they were computed to the
amount available in the appropriation. Then the MRAs were
further reduced on March 4, 2013, by 8.2% to comply with
sequestration orders issued by President Obama pursuant to the
Budget Control Act. The total amount authorized for all
Members' Representational Allowances for 2013 was $548,829,438.
The average MRA for 2013 was $1,244,543. This reduction
promoted a greater level of efficiency within office
COMMISSION ON CONGRESSIONAL MAILING STANDARDS
The Commission on Congressional Mailing Standards of the
U.S. House of Representatives (``Franking Commission''),
established by Public Law 93-191, is composed of six Members
appointed by the Speaker of the House; three from the majority
and three from the minority. The Speaker designates as Chairman
of the Franking Commission, from among the Members of the
Committee on House Administration, one of the Members appointed
to the Commission.
In the 113th Congress, Representative Candice S. Miller was
appointed Chairman of the Franking Commission. Additionally,
Representative Tom Price, M.D., of Georgia and Representative
Robert E. Latta of Ohio were appointed as majority Members to
the Commission. Representative Susan Davis of California was
appointed as the Ranking Minority Member, and Representative
Brad Sherman of California and Representative Cedric Richmond
of Louisiana were appointed as minority Members to the
All communications required to receive an Advisory Opinion
from the Franking Commission are subject to full public
disclosure. These Advisory Opinions are made available for
review (and duplication) to the public through the Legislative
Resource Center, B-106 Cannon House Office Building.
Communications that require an Advisory Opinion include mass
mailings, mass communications (regardless of media). A mass
mailing or communication is considered to be any unsolicited
communication of substantially identical content initiated by a
Member that will potentially be distributed to, i.e., read by,
heard by, or seen by, 500 or more individuals. As of December
2013, the Franking Commission has reviewed, and approved nearly
6,000 requests for Advisory Opinions.
The Franking Commission is also responsible for monitoring
requests to review Advisory Opinions filed at the Legislative
Resource Center to ensure that the applicable public disclosure
requirements are fully complied with. In addition, it is the
practice of the Franking Commission to provide notice to a
Member whenever his or her public disclosure file has been
reviewed in whole or in part. So far, during the 113th
Congress, the Commission has issued 66 Notifications of Review.
On December 4, 2013, at the request of Commission Chairman
Candice S. Miller the Commission met to revise two of its
regulations. The Commission voted to permit incidental holiday
greetings, such as ``Merry Christmas'' in an otherwise official
and frankable mass mailing. Furthermore, upon the motion of
Representative Davis, the Commission adopted a new regulation
concerning the amount of space a Member's photograph may occupy
in any one page.
OVERSIGHT AND LEGISLATIVE ACTIVITIES OF THE COMMITTEE
No Budget, No Pay
On January 23, 2013, the Committee brought to the floor, in
conjunction with the Committee on Ways and Means, H.R. 325, the
No Budget, No Pay Act of 2013. The Act, which became Public Law
113-3, required that Members of each chamber pass a budget by
April 15 to receive their salaries on time. If a chamber did
not adopt a budget resolution by that time, the Members'
salaries would be held in escrow until the end of the Congress,
in compliance with the 27th Amendment. Following passage of No
Budget, No Pay, the Senate passed a budget for the first time
in four years.
Cumulative Taxpayer Savings Estimated to be $405 Million
Added to the House's budget reductions and savings achieved
in FY 2011 and FY 2012, the cuts applied in FY 2013 represent a
total savings of $450 million for taxpayers. This includes
approximately $58 million in savings in FY 2011, another $143
million in FY 2012, and $205 million in FY 2013.
Officers of the House
One of the responsibilities of the Committee is to conduct
oversight of the Officers of the House, whose organizations
serve primary roles in legislative operations and the day-to-
day administrative and operational infrastructure necessary to
support the Members and staff of the House.
Clerk of the House
The Office of the Clerk is charged with overseeing nine
departments including the Office of Art and Archives, the
Legislative Resource Center, and the Office of Official
Reporters. The Clerk's primary responsibilities involve the
legislative activities of the House. This includes managing the
bills originating in the House as well as overseeing the voting
With help from the Committee, House leadership, and the
Rules Committee, the Clerk rolled out Phase II of
Docs.house.gov. House committee documents are now available in
XML, an open, machine-readable format that improves
transparency and access to data. The Committee also
participated in Bulk Data Task Force meetings headed by the
Deputy Clerk and House Appropriations staff, which included
bipartisan leadership and Committee staff, administrative
staff, and representatives of legislative branch support
agencies. The task force worked throughout the year to increase
the availability of bulk data and reduce duplication and
The Committee worked with several of the Clerk's
subdivisions on projects throughout the year, including the
Historian on the updated version of the Hispanic Americans in
Congress book set to be released in early 2014.
The Committee worked with the Office of House Employment
Counsel to prepare frequently asked questions to advise Member
and Committee offices on appropriate personnel steps to comply
with the sequestration orders issued by President Obama under
the Budget Control Act.
Sergeant-at-Arms and the United States Capitol Police
The House Sergeant-at-Arms (``HSAA'') is responsible for
maintaining the security of the House side of the Capitol
Grounds and for ensuring the security of Members of Congress,
staff, and visitors.
Oversight of the House Sergeant-at-Arms and the United
States Capitol Police (``USCP'') continued to be a priority for
the Committee. In order to receive regular updates regarding
security in both Washington and in Member districts, the
Committee meets with both the HSAA and the USCP on a monthly
The Committee continued to monitor the development,
testing, and integration of the USCP Digital Radio project.
The Committee approved a House Sergeant-at-Arms requested
reorganization of the HSAA structural alignment, including
certain personnel reassignments. In addition, the Committee
approved a Voluntary Separation Incentive Payment program for
eligible HSAA staff, to be completed by January 2014.
Chief Administrative Officer
The Office of the Chief Administrative Officer (``CAO'')
supports the budget, finance, procurement, facilities, and
information technology needs of the House and all of its
components. The Committee is charged with overseeing the CAO
and its support staff. Over the past year, the Committee worked
with the CAO on a variety of cost-savings and process
improvement initiatives, policies, and programs throughout all
facets of the organization.
With assistance from the Committee, the CAO executed
several contracts, and purchase orders that saved over $2
million per year including a new furniture storage and delivery
contract costing 40% less than the prior contract.
The Committee worked with the CAO on a variety of
programmatic initiatives and pilot programs to improve the
services provided by the CAO and day-to-day office operations.
These programs included: enabling the online purchase of
constituent flags through Pay.gov, implementing an E-voucher
system for the electronic submission and approval of all office
vouchers, and executing a Service Request Management system for
entering CAO service requests that are entered and tracked
through an online portal. All of these programs improved Member
and Committee office operations as well as the CAO's operations
through increased automation.
At the request of Member offices, the Committee worked with
the CAO to allow for the online ordering of constituent flags
through the use of the Department of Treasury's Pay.gov portal.
Prior to the system rollout, constituents had to write manual
checks and submit them to the Member office who in turn
submitted them to the Office Supply to store for processing.
The new automated process, which is now being used on 216
Member websites, is a cost-savings and process improvement for
all involved parties.
The Committee was involved with another improvement this
year deployed by the CAO's Finance Office: the E-voucher
System. The E-voucher system allows for all offices to submit
vouchers and invoices for payment electronically to the Office
of Finance. The project was rolled out in phases with the first
phase beginning in April 2013 and the final phase launching in
late summer 2013. The benefits of the system include faster
processing time, electronic routing and approval, elimination
of a signed paper voucher, and increased voucher status
transparency. The Committee also oversaw the CAO's successful
upgrade to a new version of the House's financial system in
The Committee worked with the CAO on the CAO's rollout of a
new Service Request Management system in the fall, allowing
offices to place CAO service requests through a portal that
routes the request directly to the appropriate department. The
system improves the accuracy of the request, reduces the
timeframe for completion of the request, and eliminates the
middleman. This new system is popular amongst users and it will
be enhanced with more services in the new year.
The Committee partnered with the CAO on the redesign of the
House's intranet, HouseNet. The updated site was the first
redesign since 2007, and improved the functionality and
usability of the site. With the assistance of feedback from the
Committee and the House community, the CAO was able to develop
an intranet website with helpful, timely, and comprehensive
information for the campus.
With the Committee's approval, the Chief Administrative
Officer implemented a Voluntary Separation Incentive Program
which resulted in a total of 40 employee departures from a
variety of CAO units. The plan was reviewed and approved by the
Committee to ensure the continuity of operations despite the
House Information Resources
Throughout the year, the Committee worked with House
Information Resources (``HIR'') to improve technology services
for the House community. These services included expansion of
the House Cloud file services, the addition of YouTube live
streaming, approval of new hardware and software standards, and
various cyber security awareness initiatives.
The Committee approved the addition of YouTube live
streaming to the House's list of available video services.
Member and Committee offices can stream, for free, the official
events live from their official websites and safely store
archived video for re-use in other communications, such as e-
mails and social media.
The Committee worked with HIR to enhance cyber security
education in the House through outreach and education by
conducting briefing and training on data security, cloud
computing safety, and social media tool safety.
At the request of the Committee, HIR began a pilot project
for using Voice-over-IP telephony for district offices. The
pilot program was designed to test installation, configuration,
capabilities, reliability and security. Transitioning to VOIP
could potentially result in cost savings for Member offices.
House Rule II creates the Office of the Inspector General
(``OIG'') and charges the Committee with oversight of the
office. During the past year, the OIG produced eight management
advisory reports and six audit reports. Of particular note was
the FY 2012 House Financial Statement Audit which the Committee
released on May 1st. The House received an unqualified or
``clean'' opinion on its financial statements and internal
controls over financial reporting. This is the second
consecutive ``clean'' audit the House has received since its
adverse opinions in 2009 and 2010.
The Architect of the Capitol
The Architect of the Capitol (``AOC'') is responsible for
the maintenance, operation, development, and preservation of
the entire Capitol Complex, which includes 17.4 million square
feet of building space and more than 460 acres of land. Certain
decisions regarding management of the House office buildings
and the House side of the Capitol reside with the House Office
Building Commission, but the Committee supervises and oversees
AOC implementation of all its programs.
The Committee met regularly with the House Office Building
Superintendent, his senior staff, and other AOC management and
staff during the period of this report. The Committee continued
to monitor AOC operations, including the American Veterans
Disabled for Life Memorial, the AOC's Office of Security
Programs, and the Cannon Building renewal, the O'Neill Building
renovations, and the planning and implementation of the Capitol
Dome renewal project. The Committee also helped facilitate
cooperation and communication occurs between the AOC's Office
of Security Programs and the USCP.
Office of Congressional Accessibility Services
The Office of Congressional Accessibility Services
(``OCAS'') was created by the Capitol Visitor Center Act of
2008. OCAS operates under the direction of the Congressional
Accessibility Services Board and is charged with providing and
coordinating accessibility services for individuals with
disabilities including Members of Congress, officers and
employees of the House and Senate, and visitors to the U.S.
Capitol Complex. The Committee on House Administration is
charged with overseeing the agency and meets with OCAS
During the year, the Committee met with the OCAS Director
on a variety of accessibility issues impacting Member and
committee offices and the public including, but not limited to,
sign language interpreting services, assistive listening
services, accessibility training, accessible tours, and House
website improvements for accessibility resources and maps. The
Committee also stayed apprised throughout the year of OCAS'
progress on the new audio-descriptive tour for Exhibition Hall
which was released in July.
Library of Congress and Joint Committee on the Library
The Committee continues to monitor the status of the
Library's Contracting Office and acquisitions function. In June
2013, the Library appointed a new director of the Library's
Oversight staff continued to meet with Library personnel
and monitor Library initiatives related to Congress.gov, the
National Book Festival, the Library's storage needs, and its
seven respective service units.
The Joint Committee on the Library (``JCL'') has no
legislative authority but is tasked with oversight of the
Library of Congress and the Congressional Research Service,
management of the National Statuary Hall Collection, and the
United States Botanic Garden. In this role, the JCL approved
adjusting the Garden's hours during the Holiday season, the
replacement of certain CVC tunnel artwork, and the maquette of
Dr. Norman Borlaug, the Iowa statue set to replace Iowa's James
The Joint Committee on the Library held its Organizational
Meeting on May 7, 2013. Representative Gregg Harper was elected
Chairman and Senator Charles Schumer was elected Vice-Chairman
for the 113th Congress.
The Committee oversaw the implementation of Public Law 112-
174 authorizing the acceptance of the statue of Frederick
Douglass from the District of Columbia. The statue was unveiled
in Emancipation Hall on June 19, 2013.
Fine Arts Board
The House Fine Arts Board is comprised of the five House
Members of the Joint Committee on the Library. It has authority
over works of fine art and historical objects that are the
property of Congress and are for display in the House wing of
the Capitol or in the House Office Buildings. The Board also
accepts gifts of fine art and historical objects on behalf of
the House, and the Clerk maintains the collection.
During the past year, the Fine Arts Board approved requests
to organize portrait fund Committees from Representative Sam
Graves, Representative Lamar Smith, Representative Frank Lucas,
Representative Bennie Thompson, Representative Dave Camp,
Representative Steve Buyer, Representative Darrell Issa,
Representative Ileana Ros-Lehtinen, and Representative Harold
Rogers. Further, the Board approved the acceptance and deed of
gift for the portrait of Representative Barney Frank, which
will be added to the House Collection.
Joint Committee on Printing and U.S. Government Printing Office
The Government Printing Office (``GPO'') produces,
preserves and distributes the official publications and
information products of the Congress and Federal government. By
House rule, the Committee on House Administration has oversight
of and legislative jurisdiction over the Government Printing
By law, the Chairman of the Committee on House
Administration and the Chairman of the Senate Committee on
Rules and Administration serve with four other Members of each
committee on the Joint Committee on Printing (``JCP''). The
bicameral JCP exercises certain authority over federal printing
policy, congressional printing and administration of the GPO.
On April 10, 2013, the House adopted, via unanimous
consent, H. Res. 142, which elected Members to JCP. The
following Members were elected: Representative Gregg Harper,
Representative Candice Miller, Representative Richard Nugent,
Representative Robert Brady and Representative Juan Vargas. On
May 7, 2013, the Joint Committee held its organizational
meeting. Senator Charles Schumer was elected Chairman of the
JCP, and Representative Gregg Harper was elected Vice-Chairman
for the 113th Congress.
The Committee on House Administration held an oversight
hearing of GPO on December 4, 2013, titled, ``GPO in 2023:
Keeping America Informed in a Post-Print World.'' Committee
Members heard from the United States Public Printer, Davita
Vance-Cooks, confirmed in August 2013, on her vision for the
agency in the next ten years. She specifically addressed
challenges surrounding the agency's business and financial
model, its digital publishing and preservation efforts, its
human capital, and its facilities as it transitions into the
The Committee worked closely with GPO and the Senate
Committee on Rules and Administration on the production of both
the Congressional Pictorial Directory and The Congressional
Directory for the 113th Congress. The Committee worked with GPO
to finalize an updated version of Hispanic Americans in
Congress, which will be disseminated as both a physical book
The Committee also partnered with GPO and the Office of the
Clerk to reduce the number of print publications each committee
received. The document reductions took effect November 12th,
The Committee serves as the primary legislative and
oversight body for the Smithsonian Institution, a federal trust
instrumentality composed of 19 museums, numerous research
centers, and the National Zoo. Approximately two-thirds of the
Institution's funding is from direct federal appropriations.
The Committee has been engaged in oversight of the
Institution through ongoing discussions, meetings and briefings
with Smithsonian staff and the Inspector General on various
topics including construction of the National Museum of African
American History and Culture; financial management; agendas for
the Board of Regent meetings; the impact of reduced federal
appropriations on Smithsonian activities; and budgetary
matters. Committee staff also participated in a site visit to
view the construction of facilities at the Smithsonian
Conservation Biology Institute in Front Royal, Virginia.
On July 17, 2013, the Committee held an oversight hearing
on ``Collections Stewardship at the Smithsonian.'' The purpose
of the hearing was to discuss the Smithsonian's collections
stewardship practices and plans. After several Inspector
General reports highlighted deficiencies in collections
management, the Smithsonian implemented steps to improve
processes. The hearing focused on these steps and their
effectiveness. The Committee received testimony from G. Wayne
Clough, Secretary of the Smithsonian Institution; Dr. Scott
Miller, Deputy Under Secretary for Collections and
Interdisciplinary Support of the Smithsonian Institution; and
Mr. Scott S. Dahl, Inspector General of the Smithsonian
On December 11, 2013, the Committee held a hearing on ``The
Establishment of a Commission to Study the Creation of a
National Museum of Women's History.'' The purpose of the
hearing was to examine the need for a national museum dedicated
to women's contributions to society and to highlight the issues
involved with creating such a museum for a potential commission
to address including whether the museum should be part of the
Smithsonian. The Committee received testimony from
Representative Marsha Blackburn and Representative Carolyn
Maloney, sponsors of legislation to establish a commission, and
from Joan Wages, President of the National Women's History
Office of Compliance
The Office of Compliance (``OOC'') was created by the
Congressional Accountability Act (``CAA'') to facilitate the
application of statutes identified in the CAA to Congress. The
Committee has oversight over the OOC, and bipartisan Committee
staff meets monthly with OOC leadership to discuss their
initiatives and any issues arising in the course of OOC
The Committee reviewed and recommended dismissal of three
election contests in the first session of this Congress. The
Committee ordered reported an original resolution dismissing an
election contest for the twenty-eighth district of Texas, H.
Res. 127, to the House via voice vote on March 14, 2013. The
House adopted the resolution via unanimous consent on March 19,
2013. The Committee ordered reported two other original
resolutions dismissing election contests for the forty-third
district of California, and the ninth district of Tennessee, H.
Res. 278 and H. Res. 277 respectively, on June 4th, 2013. The
House adopted the resolutions via unanimous consent on June
The Committee held a hearing on ``H.R. 2115, The Voter
Registration Efficiency Act'' on June 4, 2013. The witnesses at
the hearing were Arizona Secretary of State Ken Bennett,
Michigan State Elections Director, Mr. Chris Thomas, and the
President of the League of Women Voters of the United States,
Ms. Elisabeth McNamara. The Committee heard testimony about how
H.R. 2115, introduced by Chairman Miller and co-sponsored by
Representative Rokita and Representative Nugent, would reduce
the burdens on states attempting to comply with the National
Voter Registration Act to remove invalid or duplicate
registrations by matching driver's license applications between
On November 20th, 2013, the Committee held a hearing on
``Military and Overseas Voting in 2012.'' The witnesses were
Nevada Secretary of State Ross Miller and Federal Voting
Assistance Program Director Matt Boehmer. Mr. Miller and Mr.
Boehmer testified about their efforts to help improve the
voting experience for military and overseas civilian voters
covered by the Uniformed and Overseas Citizen Absentee Voters
Act (``UOCAVA''). Mr. Miller testified on his office's efforts
to reduce the number of rejected UOCAVA ballots. Mr. Boehmer
highlighted the Federal Voting Assistance Program's outreach
efforts to UOCAVA voters.
On June 4, 2013, the Committee held a markup on H.R. 94,
H.R. 95, and H.R. 1994. All were ordered reported favorably to
the House via voice vote. H.R. 94 would cause significant
savings for the taxpayers by no longer funding party nominating
conventions from taxpayer grants. It is an idea which is long
overdue so that taxpayers no longer foot the bill for
politicians' parties. H.R. 95 would realize significant savings
for taxpayers by eliminating the Presidential Election Campaign
Fund. The Presidential Election Campaign Fund has seen
progressively declining support in the general population,
demonstrated by fewer and fewer citizens agreeing to have a
portion of their taxes used for the fund. Participation
declined from a high of 28.7% in 1980 to only 7.3% in 2010.
Candidates, too, have rejected the fund. Major party candidates
have begun declining primary election funding from the
Presidential Election Campaign Fund in increasing numbers since
2000. In 2008, for the first time, a candidate declined general
election funding from the fund and in 2012 neither major party
candidate accepted general election funding. H.R. 1994 would
eliminate the Election Assistance Commission. Taxpayers would
see significant savings from the elimination of a federal
agency that has outlived its usefulness.
The Committee staff conducted interviews of staff at the
Federal Election Commission as part of a joint investigation
with the Committee on Ways and Means into political targeting
of certain organizations.
On November 19, 2013, the House adopted H.R. 3487,
cosponsored by all Members of the Committee. The bill
reauthorizes the Federal Election Commission's administrative
fines program, which provides for streamlined enforcement when
reports are filed after the applicable deadline. The program
saves costs for the taxpayer and reduces the need for filers to
retain counsel for a full enforcement action. The bill also
expands the program to apply to additional categories of
Lapse in Appropriations
The Committee, in its role as custodian of the accounts of
the House, prepared and distributed guidance on House
operations during a lapse in appropriations. The guidance
informed Members of the relevant legal constraints, including
appropriations law and the Constitution. The guidance also
informed Members of the appropriate steps to take to ensure
they could continue to receive the support necessary to perform
their constitutional responsibilities. The guidance further
explained the impact of a lapse in appropriations on employees'
health benefits, student loan repayment programs, and transit
benefits. The Committee advised Members on the appropriate
decision-making processes for determining which of their
employees are necessary to perform their constitutional
responsibilities. The Committee advised Members of the
appropriate rules, regulations and laws concerning employment
practices and decisions made in the event of a lapse in
The Committee also worked with the Officers of the House to
ensure that their operations took appropriate actions during a
lapse in appropriations. The Committee designed plans with the
Officers to maintain a secure Capitol Complex during a lapse in
appropriations. The Committee further worked with the Officers
to ensure that necessary legislative operations would continue
during a lapse in appropriations.
In addition, the Committee sent out Dear Colleague letters
setting forth the appropriate steps to be taken in the event of
a lapse in appropriations. The Committee further sent out
letters describing the levels of service that would be provided
to Members, staff and the public. The Committee also advised
Members of methods to return their salary to the Treasury
should they wish to do so in the event of a lapse in
ADDITIONAL OVERSIGHT ACTIVITIES OF THE COMMITTEE
House Office of Legislative Counsel and Law Revision Counsel
The Committee worked with the House Office of Legislative
Counsel (``HOLC''), the Office of Law Revision Counsel
(``LRC''), leadership, and the Office of the Clerk on internal
modernization projects. The goal of the LRC is to maintain a
complete, authoritative, accurate, and consolidated version of
the U.S. Code. On July 30th, the U.S. Code was released in XML.
At its organizational meeting on February 5, 2013, the
Committee adopted a parking policy for the 113th Congress
appropriate to meet the needs of the House. Committee staff
conducted regular oversight of House Parking Security to ensure
compliance with the parking policy. The Committee worked with
House Parking Security to implement Public Law 112-70, which
established electric car recharging stations in U.S. House of
Representatives garages at no cost to taxpayers.
EDUCATIONAL AND OUTREACH ACTIVITIES
Congressional Internship Program for Individuals with Intellectual
During the period of this report, the internship program,
which started in 2010, had its highest level of participation
since its creation. 44 House and Senate offices participated in
the program. Over the life of the program--12 semesters to
date--more than 84 offices have hosted interns. The Committee
intends to continue to build on the success of the program
established by Representative Harper.
Summer Intern Lecture Series
The Congressional Summer Intern Lecture Series is a
bipartisan, bicameral effort coordinated annually by the
Committee on House Administration and the Senate Committee on
Rules and Administration. Started by former Representatives
Gerald Ford and Donald Rumsfeld in the 1960s, both committees
extend invitations, mostly to current and former government and
military officials, policy experts, and media personalities, to
speak to congressional interns.
There were a total of 48 lectures over the two month period
between June 3 and August 2, 2013, with a lecture nearly every
day during that time. Notable speakers from this year's series
included the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Martin
Dempsey, House Majority Whip Kevin McCarthy, House Democratic
Whip Steny Hoyer, General Colin Powell, and comedian Stephen
Outreach to Member and Committee Offices
As part of its Member office outreach and education
responsibilities, the Committee hosted a series of briefings
and focus groups for Member and committee offices to help them
improve their own office operations. The first briefing
prepared Member office staff for spring constituent visits, by
sharing tips and information on tour booking procedures and
upcoming spring exhibits in the CVC, Botanic Garden, Library of
Congress and Smithsonian. The second provided intern
coordinators with rules, regulations, and best practices
surrounding summer intern programs. Several weeks following the
briefing, the Committee promoted and hosted Intern 101 training
to better equip summer interns with the resources to help them
have a positive Capitol Hill experience.
In the first half of the year, the Committee hosted a focus
group for financial administrators to gather feedback on tools
and resources that would aid them in their jobs, as well as one
for new Member Chiefs of Staff to gather feedback on the
Congressional transition and New Member Orientation. During the
second half of the year, the Committee assisted offices by
providing guidance on shutdown procedures and Affordable Care
Finally, the Committee planned and hosted its second annual
Legislative Data Standards Conference in the Capitol Visitor
Center on May 22nd. Approximately 100 legislative branch agency
representatives as well as data users and transparency
advocates came together to discuss the use and future of
legislative data in order to improve legislative efficiency and
STEM Academic Competition
The House approved H. Res. 77, sponsored by Committee
Chairman Candice S. Miller, establishing an Academic
Competition for high school students in the areas of science,
technology, engineering, and mathematics (``STEM''). H. Res. 77
directed the Committee on House Administration to adopt
regulations governing the competition. The Committee worked
with the Committee on Ethics, House leadership and the other
House stakeholders to develop regulations that covered the
funding and management of the Competition. The Committee
approved the STEM Competition regulations on November 20, 2013.
The first competition is expected to begin in February of 2014.
HEARINGS AND MEETINGS OF THE COMMITTEE
On February 5, 2013, the Committee met to organize for the
113th Congress. During the hearing, the Committee adopted three
Committee resolutions: Committee Resolution 113-1, Rules of the
Committee on House Administration, Committee Resolution 113-2,
the Committee Oversight Plan, and Committee Resolution 113-3,
the House Parking Policy for the 113th Congress.
On March 5, 2013, the Committee held a hearing, ``Committee
Funding for the 113th Congress.'' The Committee heard testimony
from each of the Chairs and Ranking Members of the standing and
select committees regarding their committee budget requests for
the 113th Congress.
On March 6, 2013, the Committee continued its hearing,
``Committee Funding for the 113th Congress.'' The Committee
heard testimony from each of the Chairs and Ranking Members of
the standing and select committees regarding their committee
budget requests for the 113th Congress.
On March 14, 2013, the Committee met to mark up H. Res.
115, the omnibus Committee funding resolution, Committee
Resolution 113-5, to approve franked mail allowances for
Committees for the 113th Congress, and H. Res. 127, dismissing
an election contests for the twenty-eighth district of Texas.
On June 4, 2013, the Committee held a hearing on ``H.R.
2115, the Voter Registration Efficiency Act.'' The Committee
heard testimony from The Honorable Ken Bennett, Secretary of
State, Arizona, Mr. Chris Thomas, State Elections Director,
Michigan, and Ms. Elisabeth McNamara, President of the League
of Women Voters of the United States.
On June 4, 2013, the Committee met to mark up H.R. 94, to
amend the Internal Revenue Code of 1986 to the use of public
funds for political party conventions, H.R. 95, to reduce
federal spending and the deficit by terminating taxpayer
financing of Presidential Election Campaigns and Party
conventions, H.R. 1994, the Election Assistance Commission
Termination Act, H. Res. 278, dismissing an election contest
for the forty-third district of California, H. Res. 277,
dismissing an election contest for the ninth district of
On July 17, 2013, the Committee held a hearing on
``Collections Stewardship at the Smithsonian.'' The Committee
heard testimony from G. Wayne Clough, Secretary of the
Smithsonian Institution, Dr. Scott Miller, Deputy Under
Secretary for Collections and Interdisciplinary Support for the
Smithsonian Institution, and Mr. Scott S. Dahl, Inspector
General of the Smithsonian Institution.
On November 20, 2013, the Committee met to mark up
Committee Resolution 113-6, the STEM Competition regulations.
On November 20, 2013, the Committee held a hearing on
``Military and Overseas Voting in 2012.'' The Committee heard
testimony from The Honorable Ross Miller, Nevada Secretary of
State, and Mr. Matt Boehmer, Director of the Federal Voting
On December 4, 2013, the Committee held a hearing on ``GPO
in 2023: Keeping American Informed in a Post-Print World.'' The
Committee heard testimony from the Honorable Davita Vance-
Cooks, the Public Printer of the United States.
On December 11, 2013, the Committee held a hearing on
``Establishing a Commission to Study the Potential Creation of
a National Women's History Museum.'' The Committee heard
testimony from the Honorable Marsha Blackburn from Tennessee,
the Honorable Carolyn B. Maloney from New York, and Ms. Joan
Bradley Wages, President and CEO of the National Women's
LEGISLATION WITHIN THE COMMITTEE'S JURISDICTION CONSIDERED BY THE HOUSE
On January 21, 2013, the House considered H.R. 325, the No
Budget, No Pay Act of 2013 under a closed rule. The House
passed the measure by a vote of 285-144.
On February 26, 2013, the House considered H. Res. 77, the
Academic Competition Resolution of 2013 under suspension of the
rules. The House agreed to the resolution by a vote of 411-3.
On March 6, 2013, the House considered H. Con. Res. 14,
permitting the use of the rotunda of the Capitol for a ceremony
as part of the commemoration of the days of remembrance of
victims of the Holocaust. The House agreed to the measure via
On March 11, 2013, the House considered H. Con. Res. 20,
permitting the use of the rotunda of the Capitol for a ceremony
to award the Congressional Gold Medal to Professor Muhamad
Yunus. The House agreed to the measure via unanimous consent.
On March 19, 2013, the House considered H. Res. 115, the
omnibus committee funding resolution, under a closed rule. The
House agreed to the measure 272-136.
On March 19, 2013, the House considered H. Res. 127,
dismissing the election contest relating to the twenty-eighth
district of Texas. The House agreed to the resolution via
On April 10, 2013, the House considered H. Res. 142,
electing the members of the Joint Committee on Printing and the
Joint Committee on the Library. The House agreed to the
resolution via unanimous consent.
On April 15, 2013, the House considered H.R. 249, the
Federal Employee Tax Accountability Act of 2013 under
suspension of the rules. The measure failed by a vote of 250-
On May 14, 2013, the House considered S. Con. Res. 10,
authorizing the use of Emancipation Hall in the Capitol Visitor
Center for an event to celebrate the birthday of King
Kamehameha under suspension of the rules. The House agreed to
the measure by a vote of 411-0.
On May 21, 2013, the House considered H.R. 324, to grant
the Congressional Gold Medal, collectively, to the First
Special Service Force, in recognition of its superior service
during World War II. The House agreed to the measure by
On May 22, 2013, the House considered H.R. 45, to repeal
the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act and health care-
related provisions in the Health Care and Education
Reconciliation Act of 2010. The House passed the measure by a
vote of 229-195.
On June 26, 2013, the House considered H. Res. 270,
permitting official photographs of the House of Representatives
to be taken while the House is in actual session on a date
designated by the Speaker. The House agreed to the measure by
On June 26, 2013, the House considered H. Res. 277,
dismissing an election contest relating to the ninth district
of Tennessee. The House agreed to the measure by unanimous
On June 26, 2013, the House considered H. Res. 278,
dismissing an election contest relating to the forty-third
district of California. The House agreed to the measure by
On July 9, 2013, the House considered H. Con. Res. 43,
authorizing the use of Emancipation Hall in the Capitol Visitor
Center for a ceremony honoring the life and legacy of Nelson
Mandela on the occasion of the 95th anniversary of his birth.
The House agreed to the measure via unanimous consent.
On November 18, 2013, the House considered H.R. 3487, to
amend the Federal Election Campaign Act to extend through 2018
the authority of the Federal Election Commission to impose
civil money penalties on the basis of a schedule of penalties
established and published by the Commission, to expand such
authority to certain other violations, and for other purposes
under suspension of the rules. The House passed the measure via
Rules of the Committee on House Administration
One Hundred Thirteenth Congress
(Adopted February 5, 2013)
RULE NO. 1
(a) The Rules of the House are the rules of the Committee
so far as applicable, except that a motion to recess from day
to day is a privileged motion in the Committee.
(b) The Committee is authorized at any time to conduct such
investigations and studies as it may consider necessary or
appropriate in the exercise of its responsibilities under House
Rule X and, subject to the adoption of expense resolutions as
required by House Rule X, clause 6, to incur expenses
(including travel expenses) in connection therewith.
(c) The Committee is authorized to have printed and bound
testimony and other data presented at hearings held by the
Committee, and to make such information available to the
public. All costs of stenographic services and transcripts in
connection with any meeting or hearing of the Committee shall
be paid from the appropriate House account.
(d) The Committee shall submit to the House, not later than
January 2 of each year, a report on the activities of the
committee under House Rules X and XI.
(e) The Committee's rules shall be made publicly available
in electronic form and published in the Congressional Record
not later than 30 days after the Committee is elected in each
RULE NO. 2
Regular and Special Meetings
(a) The regular meeting date of the Committee on House
Administration shall be the second Wednesday of every month
when the House is in session in accordance with Clause 2(b) of
House Rule XI. If the House is not in session on the second
Wednesday of a month, the regular meeting date shall be the
third Wednesday of that month. Additional meetings may be
called by the Chair of the Committee as she or he may deem
necessary or at the request of a majority of the members of the
Committee in accordance with Clause 2(c) of House Rule XI. The
determination of the business to be considered at each meeting
shall be made by the Chair subject to Clause 2(c) of House Rule
XI. A regularly scheduled meeting may be dispensed with if, in
the judgment of the Chair, there is no need for the meeting.
(b) If the Chair is not present at any meeting of the
Committee, the ranking member of the majority party who is
present shall preside at the meeting.
(c) The Chair, in the case of meetings to be conducted by
the Committee shall make public announcement of the date,
place, and subject matter of any meeting to be conducted on any
measure or matter. Such meeting shall not commence earlier than
the third day on which members have notice thereof. If the
Chair, with the concurrence of the ranking minority member,
determines that there is good cause to begin the meeting
sooner, or if the Committee so determines by majority vote, a
quorum being present, the Chair shall make the announcement at
the earliest possible date. The announcement shall promptly be
made publicly available in electronic form and published in the
(d) The Chair, in the case of meetings to be conducted by
the Committee shall make available on the Committee's web site
the text of any legislation to be marked up at a meeting at
least 24 hours before such meeting (or at the time of an
announcement made within 24 hours of such meeting). This
requirement shall also apply to any resolution or regulation to
be considered at a meeting.
RULE NO. 3
As required by Clause 2(g), of House Rule XI, each meeting
for the transaction of business, including the markup of
legislation of the Committee shall be open to the public except
when the Committee in open session and with a quorum present
determines by record vote that all or part of the remainder of
the meeting on that day shall be closed to the public because
disclosure of matters to be considered would endanger national
security, would compromise sensitive law enforcement
information, or would tend to defame, degrade or incriminate
any person, or otherwise would violate any law or rule of the
House. Provided, however, that no person other than members of
the Committee, and such congressional staff and such other
persons as the Committee may authorize, shall be present in any
business or markup session which has been closed to the public.
To the maximum extent practicable, the Chair shall cause to be
provided audio and video coverage of each hearing or meeting
that allows the public to easily listen to and view the
proceedings and maintain the recordings of such coverage in a
manner that is easily accessible to the public.
RULE NO. 4
Records and Rollcalls
(a)(1) A record vote shall be held if requested by any
member of the Committee.
(2) The result of each record vote in any meeting of the
Committee shall be made available for inspection by the public
at reasonable times at the Committee offices, including a
description of the amendment, motion, order or other
proposition; the name of each member voting for and against;
and the members present but not voting.
(3) The Chairman shall make the record of the votes on any
question on which a record vote is demanded available on the
Committee's website not later than 48 hours after such vote is
taken (excluding Saturdays, Sundays, and legal holidays). Such
record shall include a description of the amendment, motion,
order, or other proposition, the name of each member voting for
and each member voting against such amendment, motion, order,
or proposition, and the names of those members of the Committee
present but not voting.
(4) The Chairman shall make available on the Committee's
website not later than 24 hours (excluding Saturdays, Sundays,
and legal holidays) after the adoption of any amendment to a
measure or matter the text of such amendment.
(b)(1) Subject to subparagraph (2), the Chairman may
postpone further proceedings when a record vote is ordered on
the question of approving any measure or matter or adopting an
amendment. The Chair may resume proceedings on a postponed
request at any time.
(2) In exercising postponement authority under subparagraph
(1), the Chairman shall take all reasonable steps necessary to
notify members on the resumption of proceedings on any
postponed record vote.
(3) When proceedings resume on a postponed question,
notwithstanding any intervening order for the previous
question, an underlying proposition shall remain subject to
further debate or amendment to the same extent as when the
question was postponed.
(c) All Committee hearings, records, data, charts, and
files shall be kept separate and distinct from the
congressional office records of the member serving as Chair;
and such records shall be the property of the House and all
members of the House shall have access thereto.
(d) House records of the Committee which are at the
National Archives shall be made available pursuant to House
Rule VII. The Chairman shall notify the ranking minority member
of any decision to withhold a record pursuant to the rule, and
shall present the matter to the Committee upon written request
of any Committee member.
(e) To the maximum extent feasible, the Committee shall
make its publications available in electronic form.
RULE NO. 5
No vote by any member in the Committee may be cast by
RULE NO. 6
Power to sit and act; subpoena power
(a) For the purpose of carrying out any of its functions
and duties under House Rules X and XI, the Committee is
authorized (subject to subparagraph (b)(1) of this paragraph)--
(1) to sit and act at such times and places within
the United States, whether the House is in session, has
recessed, or has adjourned, and to hold such hearings;
(2) to require, by subpoena or otherwise, the
attendance and testimony of such witnesses and the
production of such books, records, correspondence,
memorandums, papers, documents and other materials as
it deems necessary, including materials in electronic
form. The Chair, or any member designated by the Chair,
may administer oaths to any witness.
(b)(1) A subpoena may be authorized and issued by the
Committee in the conduct of any investigation or series of
investigations or activities, only when authorized by a
majority of the members voting, a majority being present. The
power to authorize and issue subpoenas under subparagraph
(a)(2) may be delegated to the Chair pursuant to such rules and
under such limitations as the Committee may prescribe.
Authorized subpoenas shall be signed by the Chair or by any
member designated by the Committee, and may be served by any
person designated by the Chair or such member.
(2) Compliance with any subpoena issued by the Committee
may be enforced only as authorized or directed by the House.
RULE NO. 7
No measure or recommendation shall be reported to the House
unless a majority of the Committee is actually present. For the
purposes of taking any action other than reporting any measure,
issuance of a subpoena, closing meetings, promulgating
Committee orders, or changing the rules of the Committee, one-
third of the members of the Committee shall constitute a
quorum. For purposes of taking testimony and receiving
evidence, two members shall constitute a quorum.
RULE NO. 8
Any amendment offered to any pending legislation before the
Committee must be made available in written form when requested
by any member of the Committee. If such amendment is not
available in written form when requested, the Chair will allow
an appropriate period of time for the provision thereof.
RULE NO. 9
(a) The Chair, in the case of hearings to be conducted by
the Committee shall make public announcement of the date,
place, and subject matter of any hearing to be conducted on any
measure or matter at least one (1) week before the commencement
of that hearing. If the Chair, with the concurrence of the
ranking minority member, determines that there is good cause to
begin the hearing sooner, or if the Committee so determines by
majority vote, a quorum being present, the Chair shall make the
announcement at the earliest possible date. The clerk of the
Committee shall promptly notify the Daily Digest Clerk of the
Congressional Record as soon as possible after such public
announcement is made.
(b) Unless excused by the Chair, each witness who is to
appear before the Committee shall file with the clerk of the
Committee, at least 48 hours in advance of his or her
appearance, a written statement of his or her proposed
testimony and shall limit his or her oral presentation to a
summary of his or her statement.
(c) When any hearing is conducted by the Committee upon any
measure or matter, the minority party members on the Committee
shall be entitled, upon request to the Chair by a majority of
those minority members before the completion of such hearing,
to call witnesses selected by the minority to testify with
respect to that measure or matter during at least one day of
(e) Committee members may question witnesses only when they
have been recognized by the Chair for that purpose, and only
for a 5-minute period until all members present have had an
opportunity to question a witness. The 5-minute period for
questioning a witness by any one member can be extended as
provided by House Rules. The questioning of a witness in
Committee hearings shall be initiated by the Chair, followed by
the ranking minority member and all other members alternating
between the majority and minority. In recognizing members to
question witnesses in this fashion, the Chair shall take into
consideration the ratio of the majority to minority members
present and shall establish the order of recognition for
questioning in such a manner as not to disadvantage the members
of the majority. The Chair may accomplish this by recognizing
two majority members for each minority member recognized.
(f) The following additional rules shall apply to hearings
of the Committee as applicable:
(1) The Chair at a hearing shall announce in an
opening statement the subject of the investigation.
(2) A copy of the Committee rules and this clause
shall be made available to each witness as provided by
clause 2(k)(2) of Rule XI.
(3) Witnesses at hearings may be accompanied by their
own counsel for the purpose of advising them concerning
their constitutional rights.
(4) The Chair may punish breaches of order and
decorum, and of professional ethics on the part of
counsel, by censure and exclusion from the hearings;
and the Committee may cite the offender to the House
(5) If the Committee determines that evidence or
testimony at a hearing may tend to defame, degrade, or
incriminate any person, it shall--
(A) afford such person an opportunity
voluntarily to appear as a witness;
(B) receive such evidence or testimony in
executive session; and
(C) receive and dispose of requests from such
person to subpoena additional witnesses.
(6) Except as provided in subparagraph (f)(5), the
Chair shall receive and the Committee shall dispose of
requests to subpoena additional witnesses.
(7) No evidence or testimony taken in executive
session may be released or used in public sessions
without the consent of the Committee.
(8) In the discretion of the Committee, witnesses may
submit brief and pertinent sworn statements in writing
for inclusion in the record. The Committee is the sole
judge of the pertinence of testimony and evidence
adduced at its hearing.
(9) A witness may obtain a transcript copy of his
testimony given at a public session or, if given at an
executive session, when authorized by the Committee.
RULE NO. 10
Procedures for reporting measures or matters
(a)(1) It shall be the duty of the Chair to report or cause
to be reported promptly to the House any measure approved by
the Committee and to take or cause to be taken necessary steps
to bring the matter to a vote.
(2) In any event, the report of the Committee on a measure
which has been approved by the Committee shall be filed within
7 calendar days (exclusive of days on which the House is not in
session) after the day on which there has been filed with the
clerk of the Committee a written request, signed by a majority
of the members of the Committee, for the reporting of that
measure. Upon the filing of any such request, the clerk of the
Committee shall transmit immediately to the Chair notice of the
filing of that request.
(b)(1) No measure or recommendation shall be reported to
the House unless a majority of the Committee is actually
(2) With respect to each record vote on a motion to report
any measure or matter of a public character, and on any
amendment offered to the measure or matter, the total number of
votes cast for and against, and the names of those members
voting for and against, shall be included in the Committee
report on the measure or matter.
(c) The report of the Committee on a measure or matter
which has been approved by the Committee shall include the
matters required by Clause 3(c) of Rule XIII of the Rules of
(d) If, at the time any measure or matter is ordered
reported by the Committee, any member of the Committee gives
notice of intention to file supplemental, minority, or
additional views, that member shall be entitled to not less
than two additional calendar days after the day of such notice,
commencing on the day on which the measure or matter(s) was
approved, excluding Saturdays, Sundays, and legal holidays, in
which to file such views, in writing and signed by that member,
with the clerk of the Committee. All such views so filed by one
or more members of the Committee shall be included within, and
shall be a part of, the report filed by the Committee with
respect to that measure or matter. The report of the Committee
upon that measure or matter shall be printed in a single volume
(1) shall include all supplemental, minority, or
additional views, in the form submitted, by the time of
the filing of the report, and
(2) shall bear upon its cover a recital that any such
supplemental, minority, or additional views (and any
material submitted under subparagraph (c)) are included
as part of the report. This subparagraph does not
(A) the immediate filing or printing of a
Committee report unless timely request for the
opportunity to file supplemental, minority, or
additional views has been made as provided by
paragraph (c); or
(B) the filing of any supplemental report
upon any measure or matter which may be
required for the correction of any technical
error in a previous report made by the
Committee upon that measure or matter.
(3) shall, when appropriate, contain the documents
required by Clause 3(e) of Rule XIII of the Rules of
(e) The Chair, following consultation with the ranking
minority member, is directed to offer a motion under clause 1
of Rule XXII of the Rules of the House, relating to going to
conference with the Senate, whenever the Chair considers it
(f) If hearings have been held on any such measure or
matter so reported, the Committee shall make every reasonable
effort to have such hearings published and available to the
members of the House prior to the consideration of such measure
or matter in the House.
(g) The Chair may designate any majority member of the
Committee to act as ``floor manager'' of a bill or resolution
during its consideration in the House.
RULE NO. 11
The Committee shall conduct oversight of matters within the
jurisdiction of the Committee in accordance with House Rule X,
clause 2 and clause 4. Not later than February 15 of the first
session of a Congress, the Committee shall, in a meeting that
is open to the public and with a quorum present, adopt its
oversight plan for that Congress in accordance with House Rule
X, clause 2(d).
RULE NO. 12
Review of Continuing Programs; Budget Act Provisions
(a) The Committee shall, in its consideration of all bills
and joint resolutions of a public character within its
jurisdiction, ensure that appropriation for continuing programs
and activities of the Federal Government will be made annually
to the maximum extent feasible and consistent with the nature,
requirement, and objectives of the programs and activities
involved. For the purposes of this paragraph a Government
agency includes the organizational units of government listed
in Clause 4(e) of Rule X of House Rules.
(b) The Committee shall review, from time to time, each
continuing program within its jurisdiction for which
appropriations are not made annually in order to ascertain
whether such program could be modified so that appropriations
therefore would be made annually.
(c) The Committee shall, on or before February 25 of each
year, submit to the Committee on the Budget (1) its views and
estimates with respect to all matters to be set forth in the
concurrent resolution on the budget for the ensuing fiscal year
which are within its jurisdiction or functions, and (2) an
estimate of the total amounts of new budget authority, and
budget outlays resulting there from, to be provided or
authorized in all bills and resolutions within its jurisdiction
which it intends to be effective during that fiscal year.
(d) As soon as practicable after a concurrent resolution on
the budget for any fiscal year is agreed to, the Committee
(after consulting with the appropriate committee or committees
of the Senate) shall subdivide any allocation made to it in the
joint explanatory statement accompanying the conference report
on such resolution, and promptly report such subdivisions to
the House, in the manner provided by section 302 of the
Congressional Budget Act of 1974.
(e) Whenever the Committee is directed in a concurrent
resolution on the budget to determine and recommend changes in
laws, bills, or resolutions under the reconciliation process it
shall promptly make such determination and recommendations, and
report a reconciliation bill or resolution (or both) to the
House or submit such recommendations to the Committee on the
Budget, in accordance with the Congressional Budget Act of
RULE NO. 13
Broadcasting of Committee Hearings and Meetings
Whenever any hearing or meeting conducted by the Committee
is open to the public, those proceedings shall be open to
coverage by television, radio, and still photography, as
provided in Clause 4 of House Rule XI, subject to the
limitations therein. Operation and use of any Committee
Internet broadcast system shall be fair and nonpartisan and in
accordance with Clause 4(b) of rule XI and all other applicable
rules of the Committee and the House.
RULE NO. 14
The staff of the Committee on House Administration shall be
appointed as follows:
(a) The staff shall be appointed by the Chair except as
provided in paragraph (b), and may be removed by the Chair, and
shall work under the general supervision and direction of the
(b) All staff provided to the minority party members of the
Committee shall be appointed by the ranking minority member,
and may be removed by the ranking minority member of the
Committee, and shall work under the general supervision and
direction of such member;
(c) The appointment of all professional staff shall be
subject to the approval of the Committee as provided by, and
subject to the provisions of, clause 9 of Rule X of the Rules
of the House;
(d) The Chair shall fix the compensation of all staff of
the Committee, after consultation with the ranking minority
member regarding any minority party staff, within the budget
approved for such purposes for the Committee.
RULE NO. 15
Travel of members and staff
(a) Consistent with the primary expense resolution and such
additional expense resolutions as may have been approved, the
provisions of this rule shall govern travel of Committee
members and staff. Travel for any member or any staff member
shall be paid only upon the prior authorization of the Chair or
her or his designee. Travel may be authorized by the Chair for
any member and any staff member in connection with the
attendance at hearings conducted by the Committee and meetings,
conferences, and investigations which involve activities or
subject matter under the general jurisdiction of the Committee.
Before such authorization is given there shall be submitted to
the Chair in writing the following:
(1) The purpose of the travel;
(2) The dates during which the travel will occur;
(3) The locations to be visited and the length of
time to be spent in each; and
(4) The names of members and staff seeking
(b)(1) In the case of travel outside the United States of
members and staff of the Committee for the purpose of
conducting hearings, investigations, studies, or attending
meetings and conferences involving activities or subject matter
under the legislative assignment of the committee, prior
authorization must be obtained from the Chair. Before such
authorization is given, there shall be submitted to the Chair,
in writing, a request for such authorization. Each request,
which shall be filed in a manner that allows for a reasonable
period of time for review before such travel is scheduled to
begin, shall include the following:
(A) the purpose of the travel;
(B) the dates during which the travel will occur;
(C) the names of the countries to be visited and the
length of time to be spent in each;
(D) an agenda of anticipated activities for each
country for which travel is authorized together with a
description of the purpose to be served and the areas
of committee jurisdiction involved; and
(E) the names of members and staff for whom
authorization is sought.
(2) At the conclusion of any hearing, investigation, study,
meeting or conference for which travel outside the United
States has been authorized pursuant to this rule, members and
staff attending meetings or conferences shall submit a written
report to the Chair covering the activities and other pertinent
observations or information gained as a result of such travel.
(c) Members and staff of the Committee performing
authorized travel on official business shall be governed by
applicable laws, resolutions, or regulations of the House and
of the Committee on House Administration pertaining to such
RULE NO. 16
RULE NO. 17
RULE NO. 18
Other procedures and regulations
The Chair may establish such other procedures and take such
actions as may be necessary to carry out the foregoing rules or
to facilitate the effective operation of the committee.
RULE NO. 19
Designation of clerk of the committee
For the purposes of these rules and the Rules of the House
of Representatives, the staff director of the Committee shall
act as the clerk of the Committee.
Committee on House Administration
113th Congress Oversight Plan
Oversee Members' allowance amounts, including
structure and regulations.
Provide guidance and outreach to congressional
offices to ensure compliance with Committee regulations.
Review and revise the Guide to Outfitting and
Maintaining an Office of the U.S. House of Representatives, a
set of regulations governing the acquisition, transfer, and
disposal of furnishings, equipment, software, and related
Update the calculation of the Members'
Representational Allowances and ensure that all Members have
adequate resources for representing their constituents.
Oversee the processing of vouchers and direct
payments, including those for payroll.
New member orientation
Plan, implement, and oversee the New Member
Orientation Program for newly-elected Members of Congress.
Oversee the planning and implementation of the
Congressional Research Service New Member Issues Seminar in
In coordination with the Senate Committee on Rules
and Administration, organize, administer, and oversee the
Intern Lecture Series.
Review and consider revising the Intern Handbook
and other publications and communication materials used in
support of the Intern Program.
Continue and expand the Congressional Internship
Program for Individuals with Intellectual Disabilities.
COMMITTEE FUNDING AND OVERSIGHT
Review Monthly Reports on committee activities and
Review the Committees' Congressional Handbook
regulations governing expenditure of committee funds and update
regulations as needed.
Review Primary and any Secondary Expense
Resolutions and approve authorization of committee-funding
levels in committee and by House Resolution.
Review Committees' Franking expenditures.
CONGRESSIONAL ACCOUNTABILITY ACT OF 1995
Monitor application of the Congressional
Accountability Act of 1995 (CAA) (PL 104-1).
Review regulations adopted by the Office of
Evaluate resources available to the Office of
Compliance and House employing offices to facilitate
implementation of the Act.
Conduct general oversight of the Office of
Monitor ongoing judicial proceedings to determine
the impact on the CAA.
Oversee the Members' use of the congressional
frank by providing guidance, advice, and counsel through
consultation or advisory opinion on the frankability of
Review proposals to reform mass mailing practices
of Members, and regulations governing such mailings, and
monitor current prohibition on mass mailings 90 days before a
primary or general election.
Review previously implemented rules to increase
disclosure and improve the accounting of franked mail costs.
Revise the Regulations on the Use of the
Congressional Frank and Rules on Practice in Proceedings Before
the House Commission on Congressional Mailing Standards.
HOUSE OFFICERS AND HOUSE OPERATIONS
Work with House officers to identify and reduce
spending and create more cost effective and efficient
operations within the House.
Analyze management improvement proposals and other
initiatives submitted by the House Officers, the Inspector
General, the Capitol Police Board, the Architect of the
Capitol, the Library of Congress, the Smithsonian Institute,
and other legislative branch agencies.
Coordinate with the Subcommittee on Legislative
Appropriations on matters impacting operations of the House and
Provide policy guidance to the House Officers,
Inspector General and the joint entities as appropriate.
Oversee compliance with the House Employee
Classification Act (2 U.S.C. 291 et seq.).
Assure coordination among officers and joint
entities on administrative and technology matters.
Continue review of congressional continuity
issues, including organizing sessions of Congress at alternate
locations, technological support for Member communications and
chamber operations and filling vacancies in the House.
Provide policy guidance and conduct oversight of
security and safety issues and congressional entities charged
with such roles.
Chief Administrative Officer
Review procedures for processing contracts with
the House that exceed the threshold of $350,000.
Continue to review the current financial
management system and implementation of the Financial System
Review the structure of House Information
Resources and determine organizational direction of technology
services in the House.
Review and oversee information technology services
provided, maintained or hosted by House Information Resources.
Continue oversight of failsafe procedures to guarantee
continuity of operations.
Review new technology initiatives to better serve
Members, committees, and the public.
Continue the review of administrative operations
assigned to the Chief Administrative Officer.
Review semi-annual financial and operational
status reports; oversee implementation of changes in operations
to improve services and increase efficiencies.
Review the operations and strategic planning of
the House gift shop.
Continue review of House restaurant operations;
furniture policy, inventory and selection; and alternatives to
the current mail delivery process in order to strengthen the
services and tools available to Members and staff.
Review the printing needs of the Chief
Administrative Officer's operation to identify the potential
for eliminating duplication.
Examine Chief Administrative Officer's role in
assuring accessibility to the House wing of the Capitol, the
House Office Buildings and other House facilities consistent
with the Americans with Disabilities Act.
Review staff benefits offered by the House and
proposals to modify benefits.
Continue oversight of CAO functions performed for
Members, committees and other entities to assure that current
model delivers best value for entities served and taxpayers.
Clerk of the House
Review the administration of audio transmission on
the House floor.
Review and approve contracts and requests for
proposals by the Clerk that exceed the $350,000 spending
Oversee the Document Management System.
Review standards for the electronic exchange of
legislative information among the Houses of Congress and
Coordinate on matters under the jurisdiction of
the House Fine Arts Board.
Continue review of functions and administrative
operations assigned to the Clerk.
Review of semi-annual financial and operational
status reports; recommend changes in operations to improve
services and increase efficiencies.
Review the printing needs of the Clerk to evaluate
the potential for eliminating duplication.
Oversee preparation of congressionally-authorized
Review and oversee security operations in the
House, including the House chamber, the galleries, the Capitol,
House Office Buildings, Capitol Grounds, and District offices.
Review and oversee initiatives designed to
increase security and security awareness for Members and staff
in district offices.
Review semi-annual financial and operational
status reports; recommend changes in operations to improve
services and increase efficiencies.
Review impact of electronic access to controlled
Continue review of functions and administrative
operations assigned to the Sergeant-at-Arms.
Review the security operation of House parking
facilities, regulations, and allocation of parking spaces.
Consult with the Sergeant-at-Arms on policies
adopted by the Capitol Police Board.
Review the policies and procedures for visitor
access to the Capitol.
Review the printing needs of the Sergeant-at-Arms
and the Capitol Police Board to identify the potential for
Examine Sergeant-at-Arms' role in assuring
accessibility to the House wing of the Capitol, the House
Office Buildings, and other House facilities consistent with
the Americans with Disabilities Act.
Review the use of technology generally in the
protection of the House of Representatives.
Oversee the Office of Emergency Management,
including the implementation of coordinated plans for emergency
evacuation and response.
House Inspector General
Review proposed audit plan and audit reports.
Review comprehensive financial and operational
audits of the House, investigate any irregularities uncovered,
and monitor necessary improvements.
Monitor progress of House audits.
Continue review of functions and administrative
operations assigned to the Inspector General.
Direct Inspector General to conduct management
advisories to improve implementation and operation of key House
OVERSIGHT OF LEGISLATIVE BRANCH AND OTHER ENTITIES
Information and technology coordination
Oversee, in conjunction with the Senate, forums
for the sharing of technology plans and capabilities among the
legislative branch agencies.
Oversee, in conjunction with the Senate, the
Legislative Branch Telecommunications group.
Oversee continuing development of the Congress.gov
Oversee work of the Legislative Branch Financial
Oversee, in conjunction with the Senate, proposals
to reduce technology costs through consolidation and use of
Library of Congress
Conduct a review of the progress that the Library
has made in providing public access to government information,
especially in electronic form.
Continue oversight of Library of Congress
operations, including inventory and cataloguing systems.
Continue oversight of Law Library operations.
Continue oversight of Congressional Research
Service operations, and consider any need to modify management
of the Service.
Review implementation of the Library of Congress
Fiscal Operations Improvement Act of 2000 (Public Law 106-481),
the Veterans' Oral History Project Act (Public Law 106-380),
the National Recording Preservation Act of 2000 (Public Law No:
106-474), and the History of the House Awareness and
Preservation Act (Public Law 106-99).
Consider human-resources legislation proposed by
Review the use of technology generally in Library
of Congress operations.
Review printing policies of the Library of
Congress to assure compliance with Title 44 of the U.S. Code.
Review reports by Library of Congress Inspector
General and implementation of audit recommendations. Examine
options to improve operation and structure of the Library of
Congress Inspector General's office.
United States Capitol Police
Monitor administrative operations of the agency,
including budgetary management, civilian component, attrition
rates, recruitment efforts and incentive programs for officers
and civilian employees.
Review proposals for additional USCP facilities
Review analysis of uniformed officer post/duty
assignments to determine and authorize force levels to meet the
agency's security requirements within the Capitol complex to
include the Capitol Visitor Center, the Library of Congress and
U.S. Botanic Garden.
Review and consider proposals to improve USCP
training program for new recruits, and in-service training.
Authorize and oversee the installation and
maintenance of new security systems and devices proposed by the
Review and authorize regulations prescribed by the
Police Board for use of law enforcement authority by the
Examine Capitol Police role in assuring
accessibility to the House wing of the Capitol, House Office
Buildings and other facilities consistent with the Americans
with Disabilities Act.
Monitor the ongoing implementation of the Radio
Review reports by USCP Inspector General and
implementation of audit recommendations. Examine options to
improve operation and structure of the USCP Inspector General's
Government Printing Office
Oversee operations of the Government Printing
Office, including the Superintendent of Documents.
Review and adopt legislative proposals to reform
government printing by eliminating redundancies and unnecessary
printing, increasing efficiency, and enhancing public access to
Examine options to improve operation and structure
of the GPO Inspector General's office. Monitor implementation
of remedial actions taken to address audit issues identified by
the GPO Inspector General.
Review the printing needs of the House of
Representatives to identify the potential for eliminating
Examine current GPO printing and binding
regulations to determine advisability of change.
Oversee Superintendent of Documents' Sales and
Depository Library Programs.
Review GPO labor practices and labor agreements.
Review use of GPO facilities and other assets to
identify possible alternatives enhancing value to the Congress
and the public.
Compare the responsibilities and operations of the
GPO Police with the responsibilities and operations of the U.S.
Capitol Police, in order to identify duplication and potential
Architect of the Capitol
Review the operations of the office of the
Review the electronic and procured services
provided by the Architect.
Oversee Architect of the Capitol's maintenance of
House buildings and the House side of the Capitol, and review
any plans for rehabilitation of House buildings.
Continue oversight of life safety measures,
accessibility measures, and improved evacuation mechanisms in
Review the AOC Office of Sustainability's efforts
to reduce energy consumption by the Capitol complex.
Continue oversight of implementation of utility
tunnel rehabilitation settlement.
Oversee operations of the Capitol Visitors Center,
in conjunction with the Senate Committee on Rules and
Review reports by Architect of the Capitol
Inspector General and implementation of audit recommendations.
Examine options to improve operation and structure of the
Architect of the Capitol Inspector General's office.
Office of Congressional Accessibility Services
Oversee management and operations of Office of
Congressional Accessibility Services, such as the
implementation of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), in
conjunction with Senate Committee on Rules and Administration.
Review the Smithsonian Inspector General's reports
on the status of the Smithsonian.
Oversee general museum and research facility
operations of the Smithsonian Institution.
Review and evaluate the Smithsonian Institution's
use of authorized public funds.
Review proposed appointments of Citizen Regents to
the Smithsonian Institution's Board of Regents.
Review proposals for authorization of new
Smithsonian facilities. Review Smithsonian policies regarding
initiation of planning, design and construction of projects.
Review operations of the National Zoo.
Review operations and conduct oversight of
Review the use of technology generally in
Review any proposals to charge fees for admission
to any Smithsonian exhibits.
TECHNOLOGY USE BY THE HOUSE
Continue oversight of House Information Resources
and other technology functions of the House to improve
electronic information dissemination.
Oversee implementation of House Rule XI 2(e)(4)
requiring committee documentation to be made available
electronically, to the maximum extent feasible.
Review cyber security measures.
Oversee implementation of Committee hearing room
Oversee and continue to implement an enterprise
House Disaster Recovery Program for House offices, standing and
select committees and Member offices.
Oversee implementation of the House Office of
Legislative Counsel & Law Revision Counsel's Modernization
Oversee and coordinate the House strategic
Oversee continuation of House technology
assessment in new media.
OVERSIGHT OF FEDERAL ELECTION LAW AND PROCEDURES
Recommend disposition of House election contests
pending before the Committee; monitor any disputed election
Review operations of the Federal Election
Commission (FEC) and evaluate possible changes to improve
efficiency, improve enforcement of the Federal Election
Campaign Act, and improve procedures for the disclosure of
contributions and expenditures. Consider authorization issues
and make recommendations on the FEC's budget.
Review federal campaign-finance laws and
regulations, including Presidential public financing, and
consider potential reforms.
Examine the role and impact of political
organizations on federal elections.
Review operations of the Election Assistance
Commission (EAC) and evaluate possible changes to improve
efficiency and improve implementation of the Help America Vote
Act (HAVA). Consider authorization issues and make
recommendations on the EAC's budget.
Examine the impact and implementation of
amendments made by HAVA and the Military and Overseas Voter
Empowerment Act (MOVE Act) to the Uniformed and Overseas
Citizens Absentee Voting Act (UOCAVA), and consider proposals
to improve voting methods for those serving and living abroad.
Review state and federal activities under the
National Voter Registration Act to identify potential for
improvement to voter registration and education programs and
reducing costs of compliance for state and local government.
Review all aspects of registration and voting
practices in federal elections. Monitor allegations of fraud
and misconduct during all phases of federal elections and
evaluate measures to improve the integrity of the electoral
Committee Resolutions for the 113th Congress
ADOPTION OF COMMITTEE RULES FOR 113TH CONGRESS
(Committee Resolution 113-1)
Adopted February 5, 2013
ADOPTION OF OVERSIGHT PLAN FOR 113TH CONGRESS
(Committee Resolution 113-2)
Adopted February 5, 2013
ADOPTION OF HOUSE PARKING POLICY
(Committee Resolution 113-3)
Adopted February 5, 2013
ADOPTION OF COMMITTEE VIEWS AND ESTIMATES
(Committee Resolution 113-4)
Adopted March 5, 2013
PROVIDING OFFICIAL MAIL ALLOWANCE TO COMMITTEES OF THE HOUSE FOR THE
(Committee Resolution 113-5)
Adopted March 14, 2013
ADOPTION OF REGULATIONS OF THE STEM COMPETITION
(Committee Resolution 113-6)
Adopted November 20, 2013
MINORITY VIEWS OF RANKING MINORITY MEMBER ROBERT A. BRADY
The Committee reviewed and dismissed three election
contests during the first session of the 113th Congress. The
Democrats on the Committee on House Administration agree with
the Majority that these matters should be reviewed on the
merits and dealt with quickly and efficiently. We disagree with
the manner that two of the ``election contests'' were disposed.
Two election contests were based purely on Members of Congress
refusal to entertain frivolous accusations of impeachable
offenses by President Barack Obama. As these Members did not
act on the unsubstantiated claims, the organization alleges
that Congress should call a new election for their seats. The
organization did not claim the results of the election were
inaccurate. These two matters should have been disposed of
without a formal review, under the expressed agreement of the
majority and minority.
To bring an Election Contest under the Federal Elections
Campaign Act the contestant must establish standing. In these
two cases, the association filing the complaint claims to be a
registered 501(c)(3) not for profit organization. There is no
allegation of irregularity in the voting process nor any other
matter which would raise this matter to a level of review.
On its face the association--Project Hurt--is therefore
unable to lay claim to either of the Congressional seats. This
matter should not have risen to the level of formal dismissal
or to any level which requires the Members to act. It should
also be noted that Dwayne Anderson, founder of the Project
Hurt, would not have qualified to file a contest in his
individual capacity because of numerous defects. Arguably the
biggest and most obvious defect is that Mr. Anderson was not a
candidate in either district in which Project Hurt filed its
contests. It is the hope of the Committee Democrats that moving
forward the Majority will work with Committee Democrats to
dispose of frivolous contests that do not claim a legitimate
right to a seat.
We reluctantly acquiesced in the majority's desire to
originate privileged resolutions to dismiss this ``election
contest'' against Rep. Steve Cohen, as well as the identical
one against Rep. Maxine Waters. These Members appear to have
been chosen essentially at random by the ``contestant.'' (Cover
letter by the Clerk of the House and ``Notice of Contested
Election'' appear in the Appendix following these views)
There is nothing in the House rules which requires the
Committee, or the House, to address a matter which is not a
proper election contest. Sections 5.1 (p. 348), 6.6 (p. 355),
19.6 (p. 389) and 53.2 (pages 539-542) of volume 2 of
Deschler's Precedents of the U.S. House of Representatives
discuss In re Plunkett, a 1945 contest initiated by a non-
candidate purporting to challenge the elections of 79 Members.
According to these citations, ``the committee took no action on
the matter, it appearing that the contestant, not being a
candidate in the disputed election, was not qualified to
initiate the proceedings.'' There is no record the committee
submitted a report in this case or that the House acted in any
way upon the contest.
In the 1941 contest, Miller v. Kirwan, Deschlers sec. 51.1,
p. 525, the Majority Leader brought a resolution to the floor
summarily dismissing the case without committee action, on the
grounds that Miller had not been a general election candidate
and was not competent to bring a contest for the seat.
The Committee on House Administration, its predecessor
panels and the House has acted in the past to dismiss frivolous
contests, but these new cases should prod the Committee to
adopt clearer standards before wasting either our own time or
that of the House. The report outlines the reasons why this is
not a proper election contest, yet instead of drawing the
conclusion that it did not merit a response, the Majority
presses ahead anyway to present a resolution to the House.
The Majority would contend that the Committee must act on
everything presented to it in the guise of an election contest,
in order to ensure that no legitimate future challenge is
unfairly buried by a partisan majority. However, our role as
elected Members of the House is to make choices, to review
issues on behalf of the House, and to make recommendations, or
take action, or not, as appropriate. Even if the Committee were
to make an egregious error in failing to consider a particular
contest, the matter could still be raised independently on the
Floor by any Member as a question of the privileges of the
House pursuant to Rule IX.
In the instant case, the ``contestant'' did not run against
the incumbent Member and is not even a person, being described
as ``Project Hurt,'' a name of a purported organization linked
to a convicted felon, Dwayne Anderson, incarcerated at Hardeman
County Correctional Facility in Whiteville, Tennessee. No
allegations were made disputing the validity of Rep. Cohen's
election. As stated in the draft report presented at the House
Administration Committee markup of June 4, 2013, this matter
gives no basis to contest the outcome of his election, does not
meet the definition of contestant under the FCEA, and was filed
too late. Notably, the report states, relating to the
allegations: ``They are outside the scope of the FCEA and
outside the Committee on House Administration's jurisdiction.''
The report appears to raise doubts that there was anything
before the Members which could be acted upon in the form of a
report or resolution, which the Committee claims to be
privileged under Rule X, clause 1(k)(12) and clause 5(a)(3) of
Rule XIII, relating to the Committee's authority to file
privileged reports at any time on contested elections.
The fact that a person, or entity, does not like a
particular Member or Members of the House should not qualify as
an election contest. In the Committee's logic, an otherwise
blank sheet of paper stating, as this one does, that Member X
is ``hereby contested'' could set in motion an inexorable chain
of events requiring a vote by and consuming the time of the
House in the event it is entertained. This should not be the
We are ready to work with the majority to develop standards
to facilitate consideration of proper election contests.
Perhaps those which are blatantly frivolous could be disposed
of through adoption of internal committee resolutions
describing, for the historical record, the reasons for such
action. These would not require any action by the House.
The Committee held only two election focused hearings
during the first session of the 113th Congress. The first
hearing focused on Chairman Miller's H.R. 2115, the Voter
Registration Efficiency Act, which would amend the National
Voter Registration Act to update a voter's address for voter
registration purposes. We stand ready to work with the majority
to improve the legislation; many issues were raised during the
hearing concerning the effectiveness of the legislation and
have been echoed by several nonpartisan groups since.
The second hearing dealt with issues faced by military and
overseas voters during the 2012 election. These issues deserve
our attention as do the voting concerns of those with
disabilities, students, minorities and other groups who have
been historically disadvantaged to improve the voting process
for all eligible Americans. It is our hope that the majority
holds these and additional hearings during the second session
of the 113th Congress.
The Majority ignored calls to investigate the vast number
of reported voting problems and irregularities that occurred
during the 2012 general election. These problems ranged from
voters' names not being in registration books to long lines at
the polling stations to poorly trained poll workers. The
Majority also ignored the long standing practice of holding a
``look back hearing'' to hear directly from state and local
election officials along with civil rights groups and concerned
citizens regarding their experience with the most recent
federal election. The Committee has used these hearings in the
past to draft legislation and debate the need for changes to
the way federal elections are administered. Instead the
Majority focused on eliminating the only federal agency tasked
with improving the administration of elections, the Election
Assistance Commission (EAC). In order to address these
concerns, President Obama, using his executive authority,
appointed a bipartisan 6 month commission to listen and report
on the problems associated with the 2012 election. The
Commission's report is expected to be released in January 2014.
This is a task that should have been given to the EAC. As the
agency continues to lack a quorum, it would have been difficult
if not impossible to complete the task.
The majority has now turned its sights on ``investigating''
employees at the Federal Election Commission (FEC), an agency
that is at its lowest staffing levels in 15 years. The FEC is
continually being called a toothless tiger for a weakened role
as a watchdog agency. Committee Democrats believe that the
staff should be allowed to do their jobs without the constant
threat of a so-far baseless and inconclusive investigation.
Several members of the House introduced legislation to
address problems with the 2012 general election, most notably
Representative John Lewis. Congressman Lewis introduced the
Voter Empowerment Act of 2013, to improve voter registration,
access for people with disabilities and for voters overseas and
in the military. It addresses the security and integrity of
elections while also preventing deceptive practices. The bill
also looks forward in addressing the concepts and practices of
voting early and by mail. This comprehensive piece of
legislation is needed to continue building the faith of the
voting process which has been eroded over the last few election
cycles by voter intimidation; supreme court rulings and a move
back to pre-voting rights ideas. The Committee should hold
hearings on this very important piece of legislation.
The Committee has a responsibility to ensure that these
issues are addressed and if necessary take action to prevent
further problems from occurring in future elections. The
Majority is not ensuring that the voting rights of eligible
Americans are being administrated in a manner to prevent the
problems stated above from occurring during the 2014 election
or future elections.
Supreme Court Strikes Down the Defense of Marriage Act
In June 2013, the Supreme Court struck down the Defense of
Marriage act (DOMA) as an unconstitutional violation of the
Equal Protection Clause. House Administration authorized
millions of dollars to be spent attempting to defend an
indefensible law. Luckily for American taxpayers, the Supreme
Court's ruling was in line with what Committee Democrats and
House Leadership have been arguing for years and Republicans
were forced to abandon their expensive defense of an
We are concerned that during the First Session, the
Committee has drastically reduced its capacity to perform
sufficient oversight of the House officers. The majority has
reduced the standing, bipartisan oversight meeting and, in some
cases, the officers now come in for questions only once every
two months. And none of them have testified before the
Committee at a hearing during the 113th Congress. Several
oversight staff members on the Committee have left and not been
The House Chief Administrative Officer
As with other areas of committee jurisdiction, we are
troubled by the marked decrease in Member oversight and
corresponding Committee staff designated to oversee the Chief
Administrative Officer's operation. In previous Congresses,
regularly scheduled, timely House Officer oversight meetings
were the rule. The same can also be said of official Committee
oversight hearings. During the First Session of this Congress,
we have witnessed a decline in Committee oversight. This is a
troubling trend particularly when the Committee has the
oversight responsibility for an operation as large and
important as the CAO. We hope to see an increase in both staff-
level oversight meetings and official Committee meetings and
The Minority welcomes the appointment of Ed Cassidy as the
new CAO and looks forward to working with him on many of these
The major priority for the minority continues to be greater
CAO oversight of vendor contract negotiations and contract
U.S. Capitol Police (USCP)
We are greatly concerned that for some unexplained reason
the Committee's level of oversight of the Capitol Police has
been reduced during this session compared to the levels
performed during the preceding Congresses. Moreover, the
frequency of staff-level meetings with the Chief of Police or
his senior staff fell from approximately weekly in prior
sessions to monthly or less; the Committee held no public
hearings on police-related matters, not even one to hear from
Kim Dine, the new Chief of Police, to learn about his plans for
Unique among the entities this Committee oversees, the work
of the Capitol Police never stops, continuing 24 hours a day,
365 days a year. In addition to the day-to-day operational
duties of USCP employees, which require close scrutiny by CHA,
the Sergeant at Arms, the GAO and others, this year USCP also
devoted thousands of staff hours to the Inauguration and its
aftermath, the enormous radio project, and other crucial work
performed within an inevitably disruptive context of widespread
federal furloughs and ongoing budgetary uncertainty.
We wonder whether the Committee's approach to oversight
this year, with fewer regular meetings between the USCP, the
House Sergeant at Arms and our bipartisan Committee staff who
are necessarily a key source of information for us, best serves
those we oversee, especially in the wake of events like the
Navy Yard massacre in September and the October shooting on the
Capitol grounds. Oversight is not a one-way street; it also
provides the agency being overseen with the opportunity to
bring its concerns to policymakers in a timely way.
Government Printing Office (GPO)
We want to compliment the new Public Printer, Ms. Davita
Vance-Cooks, on her confirmation to lead that important agency
without which this Congress could not operate. Since her
confirmation and for the prior 18 months during which she
served in an ``acting'' capacity, Ms. Vance-Cooks has
demonstrated both great skill and judgment in managing her
agency. We can only hope for many more.
In the Committee's hearing on December 4, 2013, we explored
how the GPO is in transition from print-centric to digital-
centric publishing. This hearing, informative as it was,
revealed no surprises in that context. However, the hearing did
provide the Public Printer with the opportunity to emphasize
that for GPO, transition is nothing new; in fact, for GPO
transition is constant, a way of life there driven by changes
in technology and the needs of its customers.
The recent study and report on GPO from the National
Academy of Public Administration (NAPA) also confirmed this
fact of life, validating both the value and need for the work
performed by the GPO, loosely described as ``Keeping America
Informed.'' The study lauded GPO's approach to its work for the
Congress and its other agency customers, and offered sundry
suggestions for how GPO, working with Congress, might increase
its future value in a digital context.
During our December 4 hearing, among other things we
learned of the Majority's willingness to consider legislation
to change the name of the agency in the way requested by the
Public Printer, designed to make it more descriptive of GPO's
work as a ``publisher'' and not a mere ``printer.'' We look
forward to working with the Chairman and with the Public
Printer on that initiative, on ways to increase revenues and to
find savings, including merging the GPO Police with the U.S.
In August, Senior Policy Adviser Matt Pinkus from the
Democratic staff made a two-day oversight visit to the
Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory (SAO), a research center
of the Smithsonian Institution in Cambridge, Massachusetts. It
is joined with the Harvard College Observatory to form the
Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics (CfA). The
facilities are spread out at several major sites near the
Harvard campus and elsewhere in the city. Since the Committee
focuses so much of its work on governance and budget issues of
the Smithsonian, as well as care of collections and the
National Zoo, it is also important to provide attention to the
Smithsonian's unique contributions to astrophysics and ongoing
Oversight activities included meetings with the SAO
director and core staff; observing experiments in progress,
including preparations for a new spacecraft to study the solar
atmosphere at close range; discussing preparation of
educational materials sent to schools by SAO; and visiting the
SAO labs contained in rented space designed for SAO projects,
which also manufactures specialized materials for use in
Also visited at SAO was NASA's Chandra X-Ray Center,
including the control room. The Chandra X-ray Observatory,
which was launched and deployed by Space Shuttle Columbia on
July 23, 1999, is the most sophisticated X-ray observatory
built to date. The Chandra spacecraft is designed to observe X-
rays from high-energy regions of the universe, such as the
remnants of exploded stars. The Chandra observatory's
elliptical orbit takes the spacecraft to an altitude of
approximately 86,500 miles, more than a third of the distance
to the Moon.
On December 18, bipartisan committee staff met with Don
Moore, associate director of the National Zoo, to discuss a
series of recent events at the Zoo and the Front Royal, Va.,
facility involving the deaths of animals and the injury to a
Zoo employee who was attacked by a zebra when fences within
that exhibit were not secured. Following the report of an
internal task force, the Zoo assured the committee that it had
identified deficiencies and would make improvements.
The Smithsonian had been assuring the Committee
consistently that recent budget cuts would not have an impact
on animal care, and the results of the meeting indicated that
management deficiencies, rather than insufficient funds, had
been at the heart of the problems.
Architect of the Capitol (AOC)
During the 1st Session of the 113th Congress, the Architect
of the Capitol (AOC) and House of Representative's
Superintendent continued to provide excellent service and
support on behalf of the House, its staff, and visitors. This
service level, however, is hampered by continued budgetary
constraints. While the AOC has found ways to prioritize
projects in this fiscal climate, the Committee on House
Administration (CHA) Democrats have concerns for the health and
safety of House Office Building occupants and visitors.
After some debate as to the need to restore the crumbling
Capitol Dome, funding was secured for its restoration; however,
we question the need for such prolonged discussion in the case
of iconic national landmarks. Planning for the full renovation
of the Cannon House Office Building (CHOB) is well underway and
has thus far been well executed by the AOC. Unfortunately, the
CHOB continues to deteriorate at an unpredictable rate.
Examples include failures of ornamental features on the
building's exterior and serious water leaks in the building's
interior. In both cases, emergency repairs were required to
ensure a safe environment for the building's occupants and
visitors. This deterioration is not limited to CHOB as both the
Longworth, Rayburn, and Ford House Office Buildings continue to
cope with the consequences of deferred maintenance due to
budget constraints. CHA Democrats view all this as a serious
neglect of building maintenance as a result of misguided
funding practices for which the AOC is not at fault.
Library of Congress (LoC)
As with other areas of committee jurisdiction, we are
troubled by the marked decrease in oversight activities of the
Library of Congress. In previous Congresses, regularly
scheduled oversight meetings were the rule. They are now the
exception. The same can also be said of official Committee
oversight hearings. This is a troubling trend particularly when
responsible for an agency and large and important as the
Library of Congress. We hope to see an increase in both staff-
level oversight meetings and official Committee meetings.
Commission on Congressional Mailing Standards (Franking Commission)
During the First Session of this Congress, the Franking
Commission continued the task of ensuring compliance with
Public Law 93-191. The Commission continued to work towards
establishing new regulations and passed two resolutions. The
first allows for incidental holiday greetings in an otherwise
official and frankable mass mailing. The second expands the
amount of space a Member's photograph may occupy in any one
In the Second Session, we look forward to expanding
opportunities for transparency and improved use of technology.
The majority has developed an electronic system for the
submission and processing of Franking requests, an effort that
we support. However, we feel very strongly that this effort
should be coupled with efforts to provide the American people
with greater access to final Franked jobs. The current system,
which requires an interested party to actually visit the
Legislative Resource Center in the basement of the Cannon House
Office Building, severely restricts the ability of constituents
to research and view franked jobs. The newly developed
electronic submission system represents a unique opportunity to
address this transparency shortcoming.
Robert A. Brady.