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TexAgRepublican

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  1. TexAgRepublican

    @jackswanner

    Hearing rumblings that the immigration deal is being thwarted by special interests. This kind of stuff is why I left DC.
  2. TexAgRepublican

    @jackswanner

    I'm in!
  3. TexAgRepublican

    Employment Non-Discrimination Act

    Ms. Fitzgerald, with thanks to Mr. Merkley, submits A BILL To prohibit employment discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation or gender identity. Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled, SECTION 1. SHORT TITLE. This Act may be cited as the “Employment Non-Discrimination Act”. SEC. 2. PURPOSES. The purposes of this Act are— (1) to address the history and persistent, widespread pattern of discrimination on the bases of sexual orientation and gender identity by private sector employers and local, State, and Federal Government employers; (2) to provide an explicit, comprehensive Federal prohibition against employment discrimination on the bases of sexual orientation and gender identity, including meaningful and effective remedies for any such discrimination; (3) to invoke congressional powers, including the powers to enforce the 14th Amendment to the Constitution, and to regulate interstate commerce pursuant to section 8 of article I of the Constitution, in order to prohibit employment discrimination on the bases of sexual orientation and gender identity; and (4) to reinforce the Nation's commitment to fairness and equal opportunity in the workplace consistent with the fundamental right of religious freedom. SEC. 3. DEFINITIONS. (a) In General.—In this Act: (1) COMMISSION.—The term “Commission” means the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission. (2) COVERED ENTITY.—The term “covered entity” means an employer, employment agency, labor organization, or joint labor-management committee. (3) DEMONSTRATES.—The term “demonstrates” means meets the burdens of production and persuasion. (4) EMPLOYEE.— (A) IN GENERAL.—The term “employee” means— (i) an employee as defined in section 701(f) of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 (42 U.S.C. 2000e(f)); (ii) a State employee to which section 302(a)(1) of the Government Employee Rights Act of 1991 (42 U.S.C. 2000e–16b(a)(1)) applies; (iii) a covered employee, as defined in section 101 of the Congressional Accountability Act of 1995 (2 U.S.C. 1301) or section 411(c) of title 3, United States Code; or (iv) an employee or applicant to which section 717(a) of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 (42 U.S.C. 2000e–16(a)) applies. (B) EXCEPTION.—The provisions of this Act that apply to an employee or individual shall not apply to a volunteer who receives no compensation. (5) EMPLOYER.—The term “employer” means— (A) a person engaged in an industry affecting commerce (as defined in section 701(h) of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 (42 U.S.C. 2000e(h)) who has 15 or more employees (as defined in subparagraphs (A)(i) and (B) of paragraph (4)) for each working day in each of 20 or more calendar weeks in the current or preceding calendar year, and any agent of such a person, but does not include a bona fide private membership club (other than a labor organization) that is exempt from taxation under section 501(c) of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986; (B) an employing authority to which section 302(a)(1) of the Government Employee Rights Act of 1991 applies; (C) an employing office, as defined in section 101 of the Congressional Accountability Act of 1995 or section 411(c) of title 3, United States Code; or (D) an entity to which section 717(a) of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 applies. (6) EMPLOYMENT AGENCY.—The term “employment agency” has the meaning given the term in section 701(c) of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 (42 U.S.C. 2000e(c)). (7) GENDER IDENTITY.—The term “gender identity” means the gender-related identity, appearance, or mannerisms or other gender-related characteristics of an individual, with or without regard to the individual’s designated sex at birth. (8) LABOR ORGANIZATION.—The term “labor organization” has the meaning given the term in section 701(d) of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 (42 U.S.C. 2000e(d)). (9) PERSON.—The term “person” has the meaning given the term in section 701(a) of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 (42 U.S.C. 2000e(a)). (10) SEXUAL ORIENTATION.—The term “sexual orientation” means homosexuality, heterosexuality, or bisexuality. (11) STATE.—The term “State” has the meaning given the term in section 701(i) of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 (42 U.S.C. 2000e(i)). (b) Application Of Definitions.—For purposes of this section, a reference in section 701 of the Civil Rights Act of 1964— (1) to an employee or an employer shall be considered to refer to an employee (as defined in subsection (a)(4)) or an employer (as defined in subsection (a)(5)), respectively, except as provided in paragraph (2) of this subsection; and (2) to an employer in subsection (f) of that section shall be considered to refer to an employer (as defined in subsection (a)(5)(A)). SEC. 4. EMPLOYMENT DISCRIMINATION PROHIBITED. (a) Employer Practices.—It shall be an unlawful employment practice for an employer— (1) to fail or refuse to hire or to discharge any individual, or otherwise discriminate against any individual with respect to the compensation, terms, conditions, or privileges of employment of the individual, because of such individual’s actual or perceived sexual orientation or gender identity; or (2) to limit, segregate, or classify the employees or applicants for employment of the employer in any way that would deprive or tend to deprive any individual of employment or otherwise adversely affect the status of the individual as an employee, because of such individual’s actual or perceived sexual orientation or gender identity. (b) Employment Agency Practices.—It shall be an unlawful employment practice for an employment agency to fail or refuse to refer for employment, or otherwise to discriminate against, any individual because of the actual or perceived sexual orientation or gender identity of the individual or to classify or refer for employment any individual on the basis of the actual or perceived sexual orientation or gender identity of the individual. (c) Labor Organization Practices.—It shall be an unlawful employment practice for a labor organization— (1) to exclude or to expel from its membership, or otherwise to discriminate against, any individual because of the actual or perceived sexual orientation or gender identity of the individual; (2) to limit, segregate, or classify its membership or applicants for membership, or to classify or fail or refuse to refer for employment any individual, in any way that would deprive or tend to deprive any individual of employment, or would limit such employment or otherwise adversely affect the status of the individual as an employee or as an applicant for employment because of such individual’s actual or perceived sexual orientation or gender identity; or (3) to cause or attempt to cause an employer to discriminate against an individual in violation of this section. (d) Training Programs.—It shall be an unlawful employment practice for any employer, labor organization, or joint labor-management committee controlling apprenticeship or other training or retraining, including on-the-job training programs, to discriminate against any individual because of the actual or perceived sexual orientation or gender identity of the individual in admission to, or employment in, any program established to provide apprenticeship or other training. (e) Association.—An unlawful employment practice described in any of subsections (a) through (d) shall be considered to include an action described in that subsection, taken against an individual based on the actual or perceived sexual orientation or gender identity of a person with whom the individual associates or has associated. (f) No Preferential Treatment Or Quotas.—Nothing in this Act shall be construed or interpreted to require or permit— (1) any covered entity to grant preferential treatment to any individual or to any group because of the actual or perceived sexual orientation or gender identity of such individual or group on account of an imbalance which may exist with respect to the total number or percentage of persons of any actual or perceived sexual orientation or gender identity employed by any employer, referred or classified for employment by any employment agency or labor organization, admitted to membership or classified by any labor organization, or admitted to, or employed in, any apprenticeship or other training program, in comparison with the total number or percentage of persons of such actual or perceived sexual orientation or gender identity in any community, State, section, or other area, or in the available work force in any community, State, section, or other area; or (2) the adoption or implementation by a covered entity of a quota on the basis of actual or perceived sexual orientation or gender identity. (g) No Disparate Impact Claims.—Only disparate treatment claims may be brought under this Act. (h) Standards Of Proof.—Except as otherwise provided, an unlawful employment practice is established when the complaining party demonstrates that sexual orientation or gender identity was a motivating factor for any employment practice, even though other factors also motivated the practice. SEC. 5. RETALIATION PROHIBITED. It shall be an unlawful employment practice for a covered entity to discriminate against an individual because such individual— (1) opposed any practice made an unlawful employment practice by this Act; or (2) made a charge, testified, assisted, or participated in any manner in an investigation, proceeding, or hearing under this Act. SEC. 6. EXEMPTION FOR RELIGIOUS ORGANIZATIONS. (a) In General.—This Act shall not apply to a corporation, association, educational institution or institution of learning, or society that is exempt from the religious discrimination provisions of title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 (42 U.S.C. 2000e et seq.) pursuant to section 702(a) or 703(e)(2) of such Act (42 U.S.C. 2000e–1(a), 2000e–2(e)(2)) (referred to in this section as a “religious employer”). (b) Prohibition On Certain Government Actions.—A religious employer's exemption under this section shall not result in any action by a Federal agency, or any State or local agency that receives Federal funding or financial assistance, to penalize or withhold licenses, permits, certifications, accreditation, contracts, grants, guarantees, tax-exempt status, or any benefits or exemptions from that employer, or to prohibit the employer's participation in programs or activities sponsored by that Federal, State, or local agency. Nothing in this subsection shall be construed to invalidate any other Federal, State, or local law (including a regulation) that otherwise applies to a religious employer exempt under this section. SEC. 7. NONAPPLICATION TO MEMBERS OF THE ARMED FORCES; VETERANS’ PREFERENCES. (a) Armed Forces.— (1) EMPLOYMENT.—In this Act, the term “employment” does not apply to the relationship between the United States and members of the Armed Forces. (2) ARMED FORCES.—In paragraph (1) the term “Armed Forces” means the Army, Navy, Air Force, Marine Corps, and Coast Guard. (b) Veterans’ Preferences.—This title does not repeal or modify any Federal, State, territorial, or local law creating a special right or preference concerning employment for a veteran. SEC. 8. CONSTRUCTION. (a) Dress Or Grooming Standards.—Nothing in this Act shall prohibit an employer from requiring an employee, during the employee’s hours at work, to adhere to reasonable dress or grooming standards not prohibited by other provisions of Federal, State, or local law, provided that the employer permits any employee who has undergone gender transition prior to the time of employment, and any employee who has notified the employer that the employee has undergone or is undergoing gender transition after the time of employment, to adhere to the same dress or grooming standards as apply for the gender to which the employee has transitioned or is transitioning. (b) Additional Facilities Not Required.—Nothing in this Act shall be construed to require the construction of new or additional facilities. SEC. 9. COLLECTION OF STATISTICS PROHIBITED. The Commission and the Secretary of Labor shall neither compel the collection of nor require the production of statistics on actual or perceived sexual orientation or gender identity from covered entities pursuant to this Act. SEC. 10. ENFORCEMENT. (a) Enforcement Powers.—With respect to the administration and enforcement of this Act in the case of a claim alleged by an individual for a violation of this Act— (1) the Commission shall have the same powers as the Commission has to administer and enforce— (A) title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 (42 U.S.C. 2000e et seq.); or (B) sections 302 and 304 of the Government Employee Rights Act of 1991 (42 U.S.C. 2000e–16b and 2000e–16c), in the case of a claim alleged by such individual for a violation of such title, or of section 302(a)(1) of the Government Employee Rights Act of 1991 (42 U.S.C. 2000e–16b(a)(1)), respectively; (2) the Librarian of Congress shall have the same powers as the Librarian of Congress has to administer and enforce title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 (42 U.S.C. 2000e et seq.) in the case of a claim alleged by such individual for a violation of such title; (3) the Board (as defined in section 101 of the Congressional Accountability Act of 1995 (2 U.S.C. 1301)) shall have the same powers as the Board has to administer and enforce the Congressional Accountability Act of 1995 (2 U.S.C. 1301 et seq.) in the case of a claim alleged by such individual for a violation of section 201(a)(1) of such Act (2 U.S.C. 1311(a)(1)); (4) the Attorney General shall have the same powers as the Attorney General has to administer and enforce— (A) title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 (42 U.S.C. 2000e et seq.); or (B) sections 302 and 304 of the Government Employee Rights Act of 1991 (42 U.S.C. 2000e–16b and 2000e–16c); in the case of a claim alleged by such individual for a violation of such title, or of section 302(a)(1) of the Government Employee Rights Act of 1991 (42 U.S.C. 2000e–16b(a)(1)), respectively; (5) the President, the Commission, and the Merit Systems Protection Board shall have the same powers as the President, the Commission, and the Board, respectively, have to administer and enforce chapter 5 of title 3, United States Code, in the case of a claim alleged by such individual for a violation of section 411 of such title; and (6) a court of the United States shall have the same jurisdiction and powers as the court has to enforce— (A) title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 (42 U.S.C. 2000e et seq.) in the case of a claim alleged by such individual for a violation of such title; (B) sections 302 and 304 of the Government Employee Rights Act of 1991 (42 U.S.C. 2000e–16b and 2000e–16c) in the case of a claim alleged by such individual for a violation of section 302(a)(1) of such Act (42 U.S.C. 2000e–16b(a)(1)); (C) the Congressional Accountability Act of 1995 (2 U.S.C. 1301 et seq.) in the case of a claim alleged by such individual for a violation of section 201(a)(1) of such Act (2 U.S.C. 1311(a)(1)); and (D) chapter 5 of title 3, United States Code, in the case of a claim alleged by such individual for a violation of section 411 of such title. (b) Procedures And Remedies.—Except as provided in section 4(g), the procedures and remedies applicable to a claim alleged by an individual for a violation of this Act are— (1) the procedures and remedies applicable for a violation of title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 (42 U.S.C. 2000e et seq.) in the case of a claim alleged by such individual for a violation of such title; (2) the procedures and remedies applicable for a violation of section 302(a)(1) of the Government Employee Rights Act of 1991 (42 U.S.C. 2000e–16b(a)(1)) in the case of a claim alleged by such individual for a violation of such section; (3) the procedures and remedies applicable for a violation of section 201(a)(1) of the Congressional Accountability Act of 1995 (2 U.S.C. 1311(a)(1)) in the case of a claim alleged by such individual for a violation of such section; and (4) the procedures and remedies applicable for a violation of section 411 of title 3, United States Code, in the case of a claim alleged by such individual for a violation of such section. (c) Other Applicable Provisions.—With respect to a claim alleged by a covered employee (as defined in section 101 of the Congressional Accountability Act of 1995 (2 U.S.C. 1301)) for a violation of this Act, title III of the Congressional Accountability Act of 1995 (2 U.S.C. 1381 et seq.) shall apply in the same manner as such title applies with respect to a claim alleged by such a covered employee for a violation of section 201(a)(1) of such Act (2 U.S.C. 1311(a)(1)). (d) No Double Recovery.—An individual who files claims alleging that a practice is an unlawful employment practice under this Act and an unlawful employment practice because of sex under title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 (42 U.S.C. 2000e et seq.) shall not be permitted to recover damages for such practice under both of— (1) this Act; and (2) section 1977A of the Revised Statutes (42 U.S.C. 1981a) and title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. (e) Motivating Factor Decisions.—On a claim in which an individual proved a violation under section 4(h) and a respondent demonstrates that the respondent would have taken the same action in the absence of the impermissible motivating factor, the court— (1) may grant declaratory relief, injunctive relief (except as provided in paragraph (2)), and attorney's fees and costs demonstrated to be directly attributable only to the pursuit of a claim under section 4(h); and (2) shall not award damages or issue an order requiring any admission, reinstatement, hiring, promotion, or payment. SEC. 11. STATE AND FEDERAL IMMUNITY. (a) Abrogation Of State Immunity.—A State shall not be immune under the 11th Amendment to the Constitution from a suit brought in a Federal court of competent jurisdiction for a violation of this Act. (b) Waiver Of State Immunity.— (1) IN GENERAL.— (A) WAIVER.—A State’s receipt or use of Federal financial assistance for any program or activity of a State shall constitute a waiver of sovereign immunity, under the 11th Amendment to the Constitution or otherwise, to a suit brought by an employee or applicant for employment of that program or activity under this Act for a remedy authorized under subsection (d). (B) DEFINITION.—In this paragraph, the term “program or activity” has the meaning given the term in section 606 of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 (42 U.S.C. 2000d–4a). (2) EFFECTIVE DATE.—With respect to a particular program or activity, paragraph (1) applies to conduct occurring on or after the day, after the date of enactment of this Act, on which a State first receives or uses Federal financial assistance for that program or activity. (c) Remedies Against State Officials.—An official of a State may be sued in the official capacity of the official by any employee or applicant for employment who has complied with the applicable procedures of section 10, for equitable relief that is authorized under this Act. In such a suit the court may award to the prevailing party those costs authorized by section 722 of the Revised Statutes (42 U.S.C. 1988). (d) Remedies Against The United States And The States.—Notwithstanding any other provision of this Act, in an action or administrative proceeding against the United States or a State for a violation of this Act, remedies (including remedies at law and in equity, and interest) are available for the violation to the same extent as the remedies are available for a violation of title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 (42 U.S.C. 2000e et seq.) by a private entity, except that— (1) punitive damages are not available; and (2) compensatory damages are available to the extent specified in section 1977A(b) of the Revised Statutes (42 U.S.C. 1981a(b)). SEC. 12. ATTORNEYS’ FEES. (a) Definition.—For purposes of this section, the term “decisionmaker” means an entity described in section 10(a) (other than paragraph (4) of such section), acting in the discretion of the entity. (b) Authority.—Notwithstanding any other provision of this Act, in an action or administrative proceeding for a violation of this Act, a decisionmaker may allow the prevailing party, other than the Commission or the United States, a reasonable attorney’s fee (including expert fees) as part of the costs, to the same extent as is permitted under title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 (42 U.S.C. 2000e et seq.), sections 302 and 304 of the Government Employee Rights Act of 1991 (42 U.S.C. 2000e–16b and 2000e–16c), the Congressional Accountability Act of 1995 (2 U.S.C. 1301 et seq.), or chapter 5 of title 3, United States Code, whichever applies to the prevailing party in that action or proceeding. The Commission and the United States shall be liable for the costs to the same extent as a private person. SEC. 13. POSTING NOTICES. A covered entity who is required to post a notice described in section 711 of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 (42 U.S.C. 2000e–10) may be required to post an amended notice, including a description of the applicable provisions of this Act, in the manner prescribed by, and subject to the penalty provided under, section 711 of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. Nothing in this Act shall be construed to require a separate notice to be posted. SEC. 14. REGULATIONS. (a) In General.—Except as provided in subsections (b), (c), and (d), the Commission shall have authority to issue regulations to carry out this Act. (b) Librarian Of Congress.—The Librarian of Congress shall have authority to issue regulations to carry out this Act with respect to employees and applicants for employment of the Library of Congress. (c) Board.—The Board referred to in section 10(a)(3) shall have authority to issue regulations to carry out this Act, in accordance with section 304 of the Congressional Accountability Act of 1995 (2 U.S.C. 1384), with respect to covered employees, as defined in section 101 of such Act (2 U.S.C. 1301). (d) President.—The President shall have authority to issue regulations to carry out this Act with respect to covered employees, as defined in section 411(c) of title 3, United States Code, and applicants for employment as such employees. SEC. 15. RELATIONSHIP TO OTHER LAWS. This Act shall not invalidate or limit the rights, remedies, or procedures available to an individual claiming discrimination prohibited under any other Federal law or regulation or any law or regulation of a State or political subdivision of a State. SEC. 16. SEVERABILITY. If any provision of this Act, or the application of the provision to any person or circumstance, is held to be invalid, the remainder of this Act and the application of the provision to any other person or circumstances shall not be affected by the invalidity. SEC. 17. EFFECTIVE DATE. This Act shall take effect on the date that is 6 months after the date of enactment of this Act and shall not apply to conduct occurring before the effective date. PES: (Sec. 4) Prohibits covered entities (employers, employment agencies, labor organizations, or joint labor-management committees) from engaging in employment discrimination on the basis of an individual's actual or perceived sexual orientation or gender identity. Declares that it shall be unlawful for an employer, because of an individual's actual or perceived sexual orientation or gender identity, to: (1) fail or refuse to hire, to discharge, or to otherwise discriminate with respect to the compensation, terms, conditions, or privileges of employment of such individual; or (2) limit, segregate, or classify employees or applicants in any way that would deprive any individual of employment or adversely affect an individual's status as an employee. Prohibits employment agencies, labor organizations, and training programs from engaging in similar practices that would adversely affect individuals based on such actual or perceived orientation or identity. Specifies that such unlawful employment practices include actions based on the actual or perceived orientation or identity of a person with whom the individual associates. Prohibits certain employment actions from being considered unlawful with respect to volunteers who receive no compensation. Prohibits a covered entity from granting preferential treatment or implementing quotas on the basis of such actual or perceived orientation or identity. Limits the claims authorized to be brought under this Act to disparate treatment claims (thereby specifying that disparate impact claims are not provided for under this Act). Places the burden of proof on the complaining party to establish such an unlawful employment practice by demonstrating that sexual orientation or gender identity was a motivating factor for any employment practice, even though other factors also motivated the practice. (Sec. 5) Prohibits a covered entity from discriminating against an individual who: (1) opposed such an unlawful employment practice; or (2) made a charge, testified, assisted, or participated in an investigation, proceeding, or hearing under this Act. (Sec. 6) Makes this Act inapplicable to corporations, associations, educational institutions or institutions of learning, or societies exempt from the religious discrimination provisions of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 (thereby establishing a religious employer's exemption). Prohibits a federal agency, or any state or local agency that receives federal funding or financial assistance, from: (1) penalizing or withholding licenses, permits, certifications, accreditation, contracts, grants, guarantees, tax-exempt status, or any benefits or exemptions from an exempt religious employer; or (2) prohibiting a religious employer from participating in programs or activities sponsored by such agency. Prohibits the religious employer's exemption and related requirements from invalidating any other federal, state, or local law or regulation that otherwise applies to a religious employer. (Sec. 7) Makes this Act inapplicable to the relationship between the United States and members of the Armed Forces. Declares that this Act does not repeal or modify any federal, state, territorial, or local law creating a special right or preference concerning employment for a veteran. (Sec. 😎 Prohibits this Act from being construed to: (1) prohibit an employer from requiring an employee to adhere to reasonable dress or grooming standards, or (2) require the construction of new or additional facilities. (Sec. 9) Prohibits the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) and the Secretary of Labor from compelling collection or requiring production of statistics from covered entities on actual or perceived sexual orientation or gender identity pursuant to this Act. (Sec. 10) Provides for the administration and enforcement of this Act, including by giving the EEOC, Librarian of Congress, Attorney General (DOJ), and U.S. courts the same enforcement powers as they have under specified provisions of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, Government Employee Rights Act of 1991, Congressional Accountability Act of 1995, and other laws granting rights and protections to certain applicants and employees. Prohibits an individual who files claims alleging an unlawful employment practice under this Act in addition to alleging an unlawful employment practice because of sex under the Civil Rights Act of 1964 from receiving double recovery under both Acts. Authorizes the court, in a case in which sexual orientation or gender identity was proven to be a motivating factor but the respondent then demonstrates that the same action would have been taken in the absence of the impermissible motivating factor, to grant declaratory relief, injunctive relief, and attorney's fees and costs demonstrated to be directly attributable only to the pursuit of the claim. Prohibits the court, in such an instance, from awarding damages or issuing an order requiring any admission, reinstatement, hiring, promotion, or payment. (Sec. 11) Allows actions and proceedings, subject to exception, against the United States and the states. Declares that a state's receipt or use of federal financial assistance for specified programs or activities constitutes a waiver of sovereign immunity to a suit brought by an employee or applicant for employment of that program or activity. Prohibits punitive damages from being available in actions and proceedings against states or the United States and limits compensatory damages in such cases to the extent specifically authorized. (Sec. 12) Permits a decisionmaker (other than the Attorney General) in an action or administrative proceeding under this Act to allow the prevailing party (other than the EEOC or the United States) a reasonable attorney's fee (including expert fees) as part of the costs, to the same extent as is permitted under specified civil and employee rights laws. Requires the EEOC and the United States to be liable for costs to the same extent as a private person. (Sec. 13) Provides authority for amended employee notices to be posted in employee areas for purposes of this Act, but does not require the posting of a separate notice. (Sec. 15) Prohibits this Act from invalidating or limiting the rights, remedies, or procedures available to an individual claiming discrimination prohibited under any other federal, state, or political subdivision laws.
  4. TexAgRepublican

    Swanner Announces Governor Campaign

    Jack Swanner Swanner for Governor ‘19 For Immediate Release College Station, TX - Speaking in his hometown, former Rep. Jack Swanner (R-TX) announced his campaign for Plains Governor. “Howdy! Thank you all for being here today. I have to say, being retired was nice for a few weeks, but it got old real fast. There’s only so many rounds of golf you can play. My wife predicted that this would happen when I announced my retirement, and as usual she was right and I was wrong. I just couldn’t stay out of the arena, and that’s why I am announcing my candidacy for Governor of the Plains Region! “This region needs solid conservative leadership. I’m running because we need to keep taxes low, stop illegal immigration, protect our Second Amendment rights, value the sanctity of life, and improve education. These are all issues that will be the focus of my campaign, and I look forward to meeting with the great people of this region as we begin our journey. Thank you, and God bless America!” View full PR
  5. Swanner for Governor ‘19 For Immediate Release College Station, TX - Speaking in his hometown, former Rep. Jack Swanner (R-TX) announced his campaign for Plains Governor. “Howdy! Thank you all for being here today. I have to say, being retired was nice for a few weeks, but it got old real fast. There’s only so many rounds of golf you can play. My wife predicted that this would happen when I announced my retirement, and as usual she was right and I was wrong. I just couldn’t stay out of the arena, and that’s why I am announcing my candidacy for Governor of the Plains Region! “This region needs solid conservative leadership. I’m running because we need to keep taxes low, stop illegal immigration, protect our Second Amendment rights, value the sanctity of life, and improve education. These are all issues that will be the focus of my campaign, and I look forward to meeting with the great people of this region as we begin our journey. Thank you, and God bless America!”
  6. TexAgRepublican

    @sarahfitzgerald

    I support @realDonaldTrump order to send National Guard to border. Fortunately, we have a deal to get the wall built soon.
  7. The Office of Rep. Sarah Fitzgerald For Immediate Release Washington, DC - Rep. Sarah Fitzgerald (R-NY), Rep. Rick Sharp (R-FL), and Rep. Caroline Williams (D-CA) spoke to the press about a bipartisan deal reached to provide legal protection to DACA recipients. Rep. Sarah Fitzgerald: “While I have sympathy for the roughly 800,000 undocumented people brought here as children through no fault of their own, I initially opposed the DACA Act for two reasons. First of all it did not address border security. Border security is a huge priority both for myself and for my district. You might not think border security would be important all the way up in New York, but it is. Long Island is unfortunately burdened with a significant MS-13 presence. Two Long Island teens - 15 year old Nisa Mickens and 16 year old Kayla Cuevas - were brutally murdered by MS-13 in 2016. Mickens was so badly beaten around her head and face that she was barely recognizable. Being a fellow New Yorker, President Trump is very familiar with the problem we have on Long Island and has visited twice to hold roundtable discussions and honor local law enforcement who are tackling the problem. For too long, our government has allowed MS-13 savages to enter our country illegally through our open southern border, and it has to stop. Second, the bill was written to allow not only amnesty for DACA recipients but also for their parents who brought them here illegally and their entire extended family as well. What is a well meaning provision to help innocent young people could have become the largest amnesty in American history. "With the support of Representative Williams, I introduced two amendments to fix these problems. The first amendment authorizes the construction of a physical wall along our southern border and $12 billion of funding to build it. The second amendment restricts amnesty only to the original DACA recipients. With these two amendments in place, I strongly support this bill that will provide legal protection for innocent young people while also securing our border. I thank Representative Williams for her help in getting this through.” Rep. Caroline Williams: "Leaders are supposed to come to Washington to get things done, to keep promises, and ensure that our citizens are protected. The Republicans are not enemies of the Democrats, at least not in my view. I'm glad to unite in bipartisanship with Representatives Fitzgerald and Sharp to protect Dreamers who deserve to be in this country while building on the trust that our borders remain secure." Rep. Rick Sharp: “I’m happy to say that these amendments will be a good compromise that will give both sides something they want. Everyone wins! The dreamers will be given protections that they've enjoyed until now, and the United States gets a border wall that will greatly improve our national security. I'm happy to support this along with Congresswoman Williams and Fitzgerald and I hope that both sides can see through the bickering as we have to ensure its passage.”
  8. Sarah Fitzgerald The Office of Rep. Sarah Fitzgerald For Immediate Release Washington, DC - Rep. Sarah Fitzgerald (R-NY), Rep. Rick Sharp (R-FL), and Rep. Caroline Williams (D-CA) spoke to the press about a bipartisan deal reached to provide legal protection to DACA recipients. Rep. Sarah Fitzgerald: “While I have sympathy for the roughly 800,000 undocumented people brought here as children through no fault of their own, I initially opposed the DACA Act for two reasons. First of all it did not address border security. Border security is a huge priority both for myself and for my district. You might not think border security would be important all the way up in New York, but it is. Long Island is unfortunately burdened with a significant MS-13 presence. Two Long Island teens - 15 year old Nisa Mickens and 16 year old Kayla Cuevas - were brutally murdered by MS-13 in 2016. Mickens was so badly beaten around her head and face that she was barely recognizable. Being a fellow New Yorker, President Trump is very familiar with the problem we have on Long Island and has visited twice to hold roundtable discussions and honor local law enforcement who are tackling the problem. For too long, our government has allowed MS-13 savages to enter our country illegally through our open southern border, and it has to stop. Second, the bill was written to allow not only amnesty for DACA recipients but also for their parents who brought them here illegally and their entire extended family as well. What is a well meaning provision to help innocent young people could have become the largest amnesty in American history. "With the support of Representative Williams, I introduced two amendments to fix these problems. The first amendment authorizes the construction of a physical wall along our southern border and $12 billion of funding to build it. The second amendment restricts amnesty only to the original DACA recipients. With these two amendments in place, I strongly support this bill that will provide legal protection for innocent young people while also securing our border. I thank Representative Williams for her help in getting this through.” Rep. Caroline Williams: "Leaders are supposed to come to Washington to get things done, to keep promises, and ensure that our citizens are protected. The Republicans are not enemies of the Democrats, at least not in my view. I'm glad to unite in bipartisanship with Representatives Fitzgerald and Sharp to protect Dreamers who deserve to be in this country while building on the trust that our borders remain secure." Rep. Rick Sharp: “I’m happy to say that these amendments will be a good compromise that will give both sides something they want. Everyone wins! The dreamers will be given protections that they've enjoyed until now, and the United States gets a border wall that will greatly improve our national security. I'm happy to support this along with Congresswoman Williams and Fitzgerald and I hope that both sides can see through the bickering as we have to ensure its passage.” View full PR
  9. TexAgRepublican

    DACA Act

    Mr. Speaker, I rise to add the following two sections as one single amendment: I yield.
  10. TexAgRepublican

    Fitzgerald Supports Trump Car Tariffs

    Sarah Fitzgerald The Office of Rep. Sarah Fitzgerald For Immediate Release Washington, DC - Rep. Sarah Fitzgerald (R-NY) spoke to the press in support of President Trump’s executive order to impose a 10 percent tariff on cars produced in the European Union. “I support President Trump’s decision to impose a 10 percent tariff on cars imported from the European Union. Our trade situation with the EU is anything but free and fair. Oppressive tariffs are imposed on many categories of American goods – far more than what we place on their goods. The unweighted average EU customs duty is 5.2 percent, versus the US rate of only 3.5 percent. Examples of burdensome EU tariffs are 10 percent on cars, 17 percent on apples and 20 percent on grapes. These new tariffs on cars simply match the tariffs the EU already puts on our cars. If we want to get better trade deals around the world, we have to stick up for ourselves. President Trump will not let us get pushed around.” View full PR
  11. The Office of Rep. Sarah Fitzgerald For Immediate Release Washington, DC - Rep. Sarah Fitzgerald (R-NY) spoke to the press in support of President Trump’s executive order to impose a 10 percent tariff on cars produced in the European Union. “I support President Trump’s decision to impose a 10 percent tariff on cars imported from the European Union. Our trade situation with the EU is anything but free and fair. Oppressive tariffs are imposed on many categories of American goods – far more than what we place on their goods. The unweighted average EU customs duty is 5.2 percent, versus the US rate of only 3.5 percent. Examples of burdensome EU tariffs are 10 percent on cars, 17 percent on apples and 20 percent on grapes. These new tariffs on cars simply match the tariffs the EU already puts on our cars. If we want to get better trade deals around the world, we have to stick up for ourselves. President Trump will not let us get pushed around.”
  12. TexAgRepublican

    DACA Act

    My bad
  13. TexAgRepublican

    DACA Act

    Mr. Speaker, We shouldn't even be considering this unless we also secure our border at the same time. I move to add the following section to the bill: I yield.
  14. TexAgRepublican

    Economic Security for New Parents Act

    Ms. Fitzgerald, with thanks to Mr. Rubio, submits A BILL To provide paid parental leave benefits to parents following the birth or adoption of a child. Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled, SECTION 1. SHORT TITLE. This Act may be cited as the “Economic Security for New Parents Act”. SEC. 2. PARENTAL LEAVE BENEFIT PAYMENTS. (a) In General.—Title II of the Social Security Act (42 U.S.C. 401 et seq.) is amended by adding at the end the following new section: “SEC. 235. PARENTAL LEAVE BENEFIT PAYMENTS. “(a) In General.—Any individual who— “(1) qualifies as an eligible parent (as defined in subsection (d)); “(2) has filed an application for a parental leave benefit in accordance with paragraph (1) of subsection (c); and “(3) has provided the Commissioner with the information described in paragraph (3) of such subsection, shall be entitled, subject to subsection (f), for such a benefit under this section. “(b) Benefit Amount.— “(1) IN GENERAL.—The amount of the parental leave benefit under this section shall be an amount equal to the applicable percentage of the primary insurance amount for the eligible parent (as determined under section 215) for the month preceding the month in which the information described in subsection (c)(3) is received by the Commissioner, as though such parent had attained age 62 in such month. “(2) APPLICABLE PERCENTAGE.—For purposes of paragraph (1), the applicable percentage shall be— “(A) in the case of an eligible parent who takes leave to provide care for a child for a period described in item (aa) of subsection (c)(1)(A)(ii)(II), 150 percent; or “(B) in the case of an eligible parent who takes leave to provide care for a child for a period described in item (bb) of such subsection, 300 percent. “(3) REDUCTION IN BENEFIT AMOUNT ON ACCOUNT OF DISABILITY INSURANCE BENEFITS.—The amount of any parental leave benefit under this section shall be reduced by the amount, if any, of any disability insurance benefits under section 223 of the Social Security Act (42 U.S.C. 423) received by an eligible parent during the calendar year in which the parental leave benefit is received by such parent. “(4) ROUNDING.—Any amount determined under paragraph (1) shall be rounded down to the next whole dollar amount. “(c) Administration.— “(1) APPLICATION.— “(A) IN GENERAL.—An application for a parental leave benefit shall include— “(i) a statement that the applicant anticipates giving birth to or becoming the parent of a child; “(ii) if applicable, an attestation from the applicant that the applicant has provided 60 days written notice to the applicant's employer of the applicant’s intention (except that if the date of the birth or placement involved requires the leave to begin in less than 60 days, the attestation shall provide such written notice of that intention as is practicable) to— “(I) receive a parental leave benefit under this section; and “(II) subject to subparagraph (B), take leave to provide care for the child for— “(aa) 1 month; or “(bb) a period of not less than 2 consecutive months; and “(iii) the social security number of the applicant. “(B) TWO-PARENT HOUSEHOLD.—In the case in which both eligible parents of a child elect to receive a parental leave benefit under this section, the leave requirement under subparagraph (A)(ii)(II) shall be applied to such parents jointly. “(C) ONLINE AVAILABILITY.—The Secretary shall make the application described in this paragraph available through an Internet website or other electronic media. “(2) ELIGIBILITY DETERMINATION.—Following receipt of an application described in paragraph (1), the Commissioner shall— “(A) determine whether the information required for such application has been properly submitted, including determining the validity of the individual’s social security number; “(B) determine whether the individual satisfies the requirement for quarters of coverage under subsection (d)(2); and “(C) provide notice to the individual regarding the determinations under subparagraphs (A) and (B). “(3) NOTIFICATION.—Not later than 52 weeks following the date of the birth or adoption of the child, an individual who has submitted an application under paragraph (1) shall provide the Commissioner with— “(A) the name and the date of the birth or adoption of the child; “(B) an attestation from the individual that they have submitted an application for issuance of a social security number for such child; and “(C) a copy of the birth certificate or other documentation demonstrating that the individual is the parent of the child. “(4) PAYMENT.—The Commissioner shall provide payment to the eligible parent of— “(A) not later than 2 weeks after receipt of the information described in paragraph (3), 50 percent of the parental leave benefit; and “(B) not later than 30 days after the payment described in subparagraph (A), 50 percent of the parental leave benefit. “(5) REVIEW.—All final determinations of the Commissioner under this subsection shall be reviewable according to the procedures set out in section 205. “(6) MINIMUM PERIOD OF LEAVE.—The Commissioner may publish rules, regulations, or guidance or take other actions in order to ensure that any eligible parent (or, for purposes of paragraph (1)(B), both eligible parents) claiming a benefit under this section takes leave from employment for a period of not less than the number of months provided under paragraph (1)(A)(ii)(II), including directly contacting the employer of such parent or offsetting overpayments against future social security benefits. “(d) Eligible Parent.— “(1) IN GENERAL.—The term ‘eligible parent’ means a parent who satisfies the requirement under paragraph (2). “(2) REQUIREMENT FOR QUARTERS OF COVERAGE.—The requirement described in this paragraph is that the individual shall have not less than— “(A) (i) 4 quarters of coverage during the 4-quarter period preceding the birth or adoption of their child; and “(ii) 8 quarters of coverage preceding the birth or adoption of their child; or “(B) 12 quarters of coverage preceding the birth or adoption of their child. “(3) CHILD AND PARENT.— “(A) CHILD.—In this section, the term ‘child’ means a biological or legally adopted child who has not attained 18 years of age. “(B) PARENT.—In this section, the term ‘parent’ means— “(i) the biological mother or father of a child; or “(ii) an individual who legally adopts a child, who is the legal guardian of the child and who has the same principal place of abode as the child for more than ½ of the taxable year. “(e) Relationship With State Law; Employer Benefits.— “(1) IN GENERAL.—This section does not preempt or supercede any provision of State or local law that authorizes a State or political subdivision to provide paid parental or medical leave benefits similar to the benefits provided under this section. “(2) GREATER BENEFITS ALLOWED.—Nothing in this Act shall be construed to diminish the obligation of an employer to comply with any contract, collective bargaining agreement, or employment benefit program or plan that provides greater benefits for leave or other leave rights to individuals than the benefits for leave or leave rights established under this Act. “(f) Sunset.—No benefits shall be paid under this section after December 31, 2023.”. (b) Delayed Eligibility For Old-Age Insurance Benefits.— (1) RETIREMENT AGE; EARLY RETIREMENT AGE.—Section 216(l) of the Social Security Act (42 U.S.C. 416(l)) is amended by adding at the end the following: “(4) (A) Notwithstanding the preceding paragraphs of this subsection, in the case of an individual who received a parental leave benefit under section 235— “(i) the retirement age with respect to such individual shall be deemed to be— “(I) the retirement age determined with respect to such individual under paragraph (1); plus “(II) the parental leave benefit adjustment with respect to such individual, as determined under subparagraph (B); and “(ii) the early retirement age with respect to such individual shall be deemed to be— “(I) the early retirement age determined with respect to such individual under paragraph (2); plus “(II) the parental leave benefit adjustment with respect to such individual, as determined under subparagraph (B). “(B) (i) (I) For purposes of subparagraph (A), the parental leave benefit adjustment of the individual shall be equal to the sum of any adjusted benefit months of such individual. “(II) The term ‘adjusted benefit months’ means, for each parental leave benefit received by an individual under section 235, the number of months (rounded to the nearest whole month) equal to the product of— “(aa) 3 months (or, in the case of an eligible parent who takes leave to provide care for a child for a period described in item (aa) of section 235(c)(1)(A)(ii)(II), 1.5 months), multiplied by “(bb) the parental leave benefit ratio applicable for the calendar year in which such parental leave benefit was received. “(ii) The parental leave benefit ratio for each calendar year shall be the amount, as determined by the Chief Actuary of the Social Security Administration, needed to ensure that the total amount of annual outlays from the Federal Old-Age and Survivors Insurance Trust Fund which are attributable to parental leave benefit payments under section 235 are equivalent to the subsequent reduction in outlays from such Trust Fund which are attributable to the application of the amendments made by section 2(b) of the Economic Security for New Parents Act. “(iii) In each calendar year, the Commissioner shall publish in the Federal Register, on or before November 1, the parental leave benefit ratio applicable for any parental leave benefits received by any individual during the subsequent calendar year.”. (2) DELAYED RETIREMENT CREDITS.—Section 202(w) of the Social Security Act (42 U.S.C. 402(w)) is amended by inserting after “age 70” each place it appears the following: “(or, in the case of an individual described in subparagraph (A) of paragraph (4) of section 216(l), age 70 plus the parental leave benefit adjustment determined under subparagraph (B) of such paragraph)”. (3) VOLUNTARY SUSPENSION OF BENEFITS.—Section 202(z)(1)(A)(i) of the Social Security Act (42 U.S.C. 402(z)(1)(A)(i)) is amended by inserting after “the age of 70” the following: “(or, in the case of an individual described in subparagraph (A) of paragraph (4) of section 216(l), the age of 70 plus the parental leave benefit adjustment determined under subparagraph (B) of such paragraph)”. (c) Transfers To Federal Old-Age And Survivors Insurance Trust Fund.—Section 201 of the Social Security Act (42 U.S.C. 401) is amended by adding at the end the following new subsection: “(o) (1) For each fiscal year, there is hereby appropriated to the Federal Old-Age and Survivors Insurance Trust Fund, out of any moneys in the Treasury not otherwise appropriated, an amount (not less than zero) equal to— “(A) the total amount of outlays from the Federal Old-Age and Survivors Insurance Trust Fund during the preceding fiscal year which are attributable to parental leave benefit payments under section 235; minus “(B) the total reduction in outlays from such Trust Fund during the preceding fiscal year which are attributable to the application of the amendments made by section 2(b) of the Economic Security for New Parents Act. “(2) The amount appropriated to the Federal Old-Age and Survivors Insurance Trust Fund under paragraph (1) shall be determined by the Secretary of the Treasury in consultation with the Chief Actuary of the Social Security Administration.”. (d) Effective Date.—The amendments made by this section shall apply to calendar years beginning after December 31, 2019. SEC. 3. TAXATION OF PARENTAL LEAVE BENEFIT PAYMENTS. (a) In General.—Section 86 of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986 is amended— (1) in subsection (d)(1)(A), by inserting “(or, in the case of section 235 of the Social Security Act, a single benefit payment)” after “a monthly benefit”; and (2) by adding at the end the following new subsection: “(g) Parental Leave Benefit Payments.—In the case of a taxpayer who receives a parental leave benefit under section 235 of the Social Security Act during the taxable year, the base amount and adjusted base amount, as described in subsection (c), for such taxable year shall be determined by multiplying the dollar amounts otherwise applicable under paragraphs (1) and (2) of such subsection by 2.”. (b) Effective Date.—The amendments made by this section shall apply to taxable years beginning after December 31, 2019.
  15. TexAgRepublican

    SMART Port Security Act

    Ms. Fitzgerald, with thanks to Ms. Miller, submits A BILL To authorize, enhance, and reform certain port security programs through increased efficiency and risk-based coordination within the Department of Homeland Security, and for other purposes. Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled, SECTION 1. SHORT TITLE. This Act may be cited as the “Securing Maritime Activities through Risk-based Targeting for Port Security Act” or the “SMART Port Security Act”. SEC. 2. TABLE OF CONTENTS. The table of contents for this Act is the following: Sec.1.Short title. Sec.2.Table of contents. Sec.3.Definitions. TITLE I—DEPARTMENT OF HOMELAND SECURITY PORT SECURITY PROGRAMS Sec.101.Updates of maritime operations coordination plan. Sec.102.U.S. Customs and Border Protection Office of Air and Marine Asset Deployment. Sec.103.Cost-benefit analysis of co-locating operational entities. Sec.104.Study of maritime security redundancies. Sec.105.Acquisition and strategic sourcing of marine and aviation assets. Sec.106.Port security grant program management. Sec.107.Port security grant funding for mandated security personnel. Sec.108.Interagency operational centers for port security. Sec.109.Report on DHS aviation assets. Sec.110.Small vessel threat analysis. Sec.111.U.S. Customs and Border Protection workforce plan. Sec.112.Integrated cross-border maritime operations between the United States and Canada. Sec.113.Training and certification of training for port security. Sec.114.Northern border unmanned aerial vehicle pilot project. Sec.115.Recognition of port security assessments conducted by other entities. Sec.116.Use of port security grant funds for replacement of security equipment or facilities. TITLE II—MARITIME SUPPLY CHAIN SECURITY Sec.201.Strategic plan to enhance the security of the international supply chain. Sec.202.Customs-Trade Partnership Against Terrorism. Sec.203.Recognition of other countries’ trusted shipper programs. Sec.204.Pilot program for inclusion of non-asset based third party logistics providers in the Customs-Trade Partnership Against Terrorism. Sec.205.Transportation Worker Identification Credential process reform. Sec.206.Expiration of certain transportation worker identification credentials. Sec.207.Securing the Transportation Worker Identification Credential against use by unauthorized aliens. Sec.208.Report on Federal transportation security credentialing programs. SEC. 3. DEFINITIONS. In this Act: (1) APPROPRIATE CONGRESSIONAL COMMITTEES.—The term “appropriate congressional committees” has the meaning given such term in section 2 of the Homeland Security Act of 2002 (6 U.S.C. 101). (2) DEPARTMENT.—The term “Department” means the Department of Homeland Security. (3) FUNCTION.—The term “function” includes authorities, powers, rights, privileges, immunities, programs, projects, activities, duties, and responsibilities. (4) LOCAL GOVERNMENT.—The term “local government” means— (A) a county, municipality, city, town, township, local public authority, school district, special district, intrastate district, council of governments (regardless of whether the council of governments is incorporated as a nonprofit corporation under State law), regional or interstate government entity, or agency or instrumentality of a local government; (B) an Indian tribe or authorized tribal organization, or in Alaska a Native village or Alaska Regional Native Corporation; and (C) a rural community, unincorporated town or village, or other public entity. (5) PERSONNEL.—The term “personnel” means officers and employees. (6) SECRETARY.—The term “Secretary” means the Secretary of Homeland Security. (7) STATE.—The term “State” means any State of the United States, the District of Columbia, the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, the United States Virgin Islands, Guam, American Samoa, the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands, and any possession of the United States. (8) TERRORISM.—The term “terrorism” has the meaning given such term in section 2 of the Homeland Security Act of 2002 (6 U.S.C. 101). (9) UNITED STATES.—The term “United States”, when used in a geographic sense, means any State of the United States, the District of Columbia, the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, the Virgin Islands, Guam, American Samoa, the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands, any possession of the United States, and any waters within the jurisdiction of the United States. TITLE I—DEPARTMENT OF HOMELAND SECURITY PORT SECURITY PROGRAMS SEC. 101. UPDATES OF MARITIME OPERATIONS COORDINATION PLAN. (a) In General.—Not later than one year after the date of the enactment of this Act, the Secretary shall submit to the appropriate congressional committees a maritime operations coordination plan for the coordination and cooperation of maritime operations undertaken by the agencies within the Department. Such plan shall update the maritime operations coordination plan released by the Department in July 2011, and shall address the following: (1) Coordination of planning, integration of maritime operations, and development of joint situational awareness of any office or agency of the Department with responsibility for maritime homeland security missions. (2) Maintaining effective information sharing and, as appropriate, intelligence integration, with Federal, State, and local officials and the private sector, regarding threats to maritime security. (3) Leveraging existing departmental coordination mechanisms, including the Interagency Operational Centers, as authorized under section 70107A of title 46, United States Code, the U.S. Customs and Border Protection Air and Marine Operations Center, the U.S. Customs and Border Protection Operational Integration Center, and other regional maritime operational command centers. (4) Cooperation and coordination with other agencies of the Federal Government, and State and local agencies, in the maritime environment, in support of maritime homeland security missions. (5) Work conducted within the context of other national and Department maritime security strategic guidance. (b) Additional Updates.—Not later than two years after the date of the enactment of this Act, the Secretary, acting through the Department’s Office of Operations Coordination and Planning, shall submit to the appropriate congressional committees an additional update to the maritime operations coordination plan. SEC. 102. U.S. CUSTOMS AND BORDER PROTECTION OFFICE OF AIR AND MARINE ASSET DEPLOYMENT. (a) In General.—Any new asset deployment by the U.S. Customs and Border Protection’s Office of Air and Marine, following the date of the enactment of this Act, shall, to the greatest extent practicable, occur in accordance with a risk-based assessment that considers mission needs, performance results, threats, costs, and any other relevant factors identified by the Secretary. Specific factors to be included in such assessment shall include, at a minimum, the following: (1) Mission requirements that prioritize the operational needs of field commanders to secure the United States border and ports. (2) Other Department assets available to help address any unmet border and port security mission needs. (3) Risk analysis showing positioning of the asset at issue to respond to intelligence on emerging terrorist and other threats. (4) Cost-benefit analysis showing the relative ability to use the asset at issue in the most cost-effective way to reduce risk and achieve mission success. (b) Considerations.—An assessment required under subsection (a) shall consider applicable Federal guidance, standards, and agency strategic and performance plans, including the following: (1) The most recent Departmental Quadrennial Homeland Security Review, and any follow-up guidance related to such Review. (2) The Department’s Annual Performance Plans. (3) Department policy guiding use of integrated risk management in resource allocation decisions. (4) Department and U.S. Customs and Border Protection Strategic Plans and Resource Deployment Plans. (5) Applicable aviation guidance from the Department, including the DHS Aviation Concept of Operations. (6) Other strategic and acquisition guidance promulgated by the Federal Government as the Secretary determines appropriate. (c) Audit And Report.—The Inspector General of the Department shall biennially audit the deployment of new assets within U.S. Customs and Border Protection’s Office of Air and Marine and submit to the appropriate congressional committees a report on the compliance of the Department with the requirements of this section. SEC. 103. COST-BENEFIT ANALYSIS OF CO-LOCATING OPERATIONAL ENTITIES. (a) In General.—For all locations in which U.S. Customs and Border Protection’s Office of Air and Marine operates that are within 25 miles of locations where any other Department agency also operates air and marine assets, the Secretary shall conduct a cost-benefit analysis to consider the potential cost of and savings derived from co-locating aviation and maritime operational assets of the different agencies of the Department. In analyzing the potential cost savings achieved by sharing aviation and maritime facilities, the study shall consider at a minimum the following factors: (1) Potential enhanced cooperation derived from Department personnel being co-located. (2) Potential cost of, and savings derived through, shared maintenance and logistics facilities and activities. (3) Joint use of base and facility infrastructure, such as runways, hangars, control towers, operations centers, piers and docks, boathouses, and fuel depots. (4) Short term moving costs required in order to co-locate facilities. (5) Acquisition and infrastructure costs for enlarging current facilities as needed. (b) Report.—Not later than one year after the date of the enactment of this Act, the Secretary shall submit to the appropriate congressional committees a report summarizing the results of the cost-benefit analysis required under subsection (a) and any planned actions based upon such results. SEC. 104. STUDY OF MARITIME SECURITY REDUNDANCIES. The Comptroller General of the United States shall by not later than 1 year after the date of enactment of this Act— (1) conduct a review of port security and maritime law enforcement operations within the Department to identify initiatives and programs with duplicative, overlapping, or redundant goals and activities, including the cost of such duplication; and (2) submit to the appropriate congressional committees a report on the findings of the study, including— (A) recommendations for consolidation, elimination, or increased cooperation to reduce unnecessary duplication found in the study; and (B) an analysis of personnel, maintenance, and operational costs related to unnecessarily duplicative, overlapping, or redundant goals and activities found in the study. SEC. 105. ACQUISITION AND STRATEGIC SOURCING OF MARINE AND AVIATION ASSETS. (a) In General.—Before initiating the acquisition of any new boat or aviation asset, the Secretary shall coordinate across the agencies of the Department, as appropriate, to— (1) identify common mission requirements before initiating a new acquisition program; and (2) standardize, to the extent practicable, equipment purchases, streamline the acquisition process, and conduct best practices for strategic sourcing to improve control, reduce cost, and facilitate oversight of asset purchases prior to issuing a Request for Proposal. (b) Establishment Of Aviation And Maritime Coordination Mechanism.—Not later than 180 days after the date of the enactment of this Act, the Secretary shall establish a coordinating mechanism for aviation and maritime issues, including issues related to the acquisition, administration, operations, maintenance, and joint management across the Department, in order to decrease procurement and operational costs and increase efficiencies. (c) Special Rule.—For the purposes of this section, a boat shall be considered any vessel less than 65 feet in length. SEC. 106. PORT SECURITY GRANT PROGRAM MANAGEMENT. (a) Determination Of Applications.—Section 70107(g) of title 46, United States Code, is amended— (1) by striking “Any entity” and inserting the following: “(1) IN GENERAL.—Any entity”; and (2) by adding at the end the following: “(2) DETERMINATION.—Notwithstanding any other provision of law, the Secretary shall, not later than 60 days after the date on which an applicant submits a complete application for a grant under this section, either approve or disapprove the application.”. (b) Administration Of Cost Share Determinations.—Section 70107(c)(2) of title 46, United States Code, is amended— (1) by striking subparagraph (B) and inserting the following: “(B) HIGHER LEVEL OF SUPPORT REQUIRED.—If the Secretary or the Secretary’s designee determines that a proposed project merits support and cannot be undertaken without a higher rate of Federal support, then the Secretary or the Secretary’s designee may approve grants under this section for that project with a matching requirement other than that specified in paragraph (1).”; and (2) by inserting after subparagraph (C) the following: “(D) COST SHARE DETERMINATIONS.—Notwithstanding any other provision of law, not later than 60 days after the date on which an applicant submits a complete application for a matching requirement waiver under this paragraph the Secretary shall either approve or disapprove the application.”. (c) Administration.—Section 70107(i) of title 46, United States Code, is amended by adding after paragraph (4) the following: “(5) RELEASE OF FUNDS.—To the maximum extent practicable, the Secretary shall complete all necessary programmatic reviews and release grant funds awarded under this section to the appropriate entity not later than 180 days after the date on which an applicant submits a complete application. “(6) PERFORMANCE PERIOD.—The Secretary shall utilize a period of performance of not less than 3 years for expenditure of grant funds awarded under this section. “(7) EXTENSION DETERMINATIONS.—Notwithstanding any other provision of law, not later than 60 days after the date on which an applicant submits a complete application for an extension of the period of performance for a grant, the Secretary shall either approve or disapprove the application.”. SEC. 107. PORT SECURITY GRANT FUNDING FOR MANDATED SECURITY PERSONNEL. Section 70107(b)(1) of title 46, United States Code, is amended by striking the period and inserting the following: “, including overtime and backfill costs incurred in support of other expenditures authorized under this subsection, except that not more than 50 percent of amounts received by a grantee under this section for a fiscal year may be used under this paragraph.”. SEC. 108. INTERAGENCY OPERATIONAL CENTERS FOR PORT SECURITY. (a) Participating Personnel.—Section 70107A(b)(1)(B) of title 46, United States Code, is amended— (1) by inserting “, not less than part-time representation from U. S. Customs and Border Protection and U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement,”after “the Coast Guard”; and (2) by striking “the United States Customs and Border Protection, the United States Immigration and Customs Enforcement,”. (b) Assessment.—Not later than one year after the date of enactment of this Act the Secretary (as that term is used in that section) shall transmit to the appropriate congressional committees an assessment of— (1) interagency operational centers under such section and the implementation of the amendments made by this section; (2) participation in such centers and by Federal agencies, State and local law enforcement agencies, port security agencies, and other public and private sector entities, including joint daily operational coordination, training and certifying of non-Federal law enforcement personnel, and joint training exercises; (3) deployment of interoperable communications equipment under subsection (e) of such section, including— (A) an assessment of the cost-effectiveness and utility of such equipment for Federal agencies, State and local law enforcement agencies, port security agencies, and other public and private sector entities; (B) data showing which Federal agencies, State and local law enforcement agencies, port security agencies, and other public and private sector entities are utilizing such equipment; (C) an explanation of the process in place to obtain and incorporate feedback from Federal agencies, State and local law enforcement agencies, port security agencies, and other public and private sector entities that are utilizing such equipment in order to better meet their needs; and (D) an updated deployment schedule and life cycle cost estimate for the deployment of such equipment; and (4) mission execution and mission support activities of such centers, including daily coordination activities, information sharing, intelligence integration, and operational planning. SEC. 109. REPORT ON DHS AVIATION ASSETS. (a) In General.—Not later than one year after the date of the enactment of this Act, the Comptroller General of the United States shall submit to the appropriate congressional committees a report that analyzes and compares the costs, capabilities, and missions of different aviation assets, including unmanned aerial vehicles, utilized by the Department to assess the relative costs of unmanned aerial vehicles as compared to manned aerial vehicles, and any increased operational benefits offered by unmanned aerial vehicles as compared to manned aviation assets. (b) Required Data.—The report required under subsection (a) shall include a detailed assessment of costs for operating each type of asset described in such report, including— (1) fuel costs; (2) crew and staffing costs; (3) maintenance costs; (4) communication and satellite bandwidth costs; (5) costs associated with the acquisition of each type of such asset; and (6) any other relevant costs necessary to provide a holistic analysis and to identify potential cost savings. SEC. 110. SMALL VESSEL THREAT ANALYSIS. Not later than 1 year after the date of enactment of this Act, the Secretary shall submit to the appropriate congressional committees a report analyzing the threat of, vulnerability to, and consequence of an act of terrorism using a small vessel to attack United States vessels, ports, or maritime interests. SEC. 111. U.S. CUSTOMS AND BORDER PROTECTION WORKFORCE PLAN. (a) In General.—Not later than one year after the date of the enactment of this Act, the Secretary shall submit to the appropriate congressional committees a plan for optimizing staffing levels for U.S. Customs and Border Protection personnel to carry out the mission of the Department, including optimal levels of U.S. Customs and Border Protection staffing required to conduct all border security functions. (b) Consideration Of Prior Staffing Resources.—The staffing plan required under subsection (a) shall consider previous staffing models prepared by the Department and assessments of threat and vulnerabilities. SEC. 112. INTEGRATED CROSS-BORDER MARITIME OPERATIONS BETWEEN THE UNITED STATES AND CANADA. (a) In General.—Subtitle C of title IV of the Homeland Security Act of 2002 (6 U.S.C. 201 et seq.) is amended by adding at the end the following: “SEC. 432. INTEGRATED CROSS-BORDER MARITIME OPERATIONS BETWEEN THE UNITED STATES AND CANADA. “(a) Authorization.—The Secretary is authorized to establish an Integrated Cross-Border Maritime Operations Program to coordinate maritime security operations between the United States and Canada (in this section referred to as the ‘Program’). “(b) Purpose.—The Secretary, acting through the Commandant of the Coast Guard, shall administer the Program in a manner that results in a cooperative approach between the United States and Canada to strengthen border security and detect, prevent, suppress, investigate, and respond to terrorism and violations of law related to border security. “(c) Training.—The Secretary, acting through the Commandant of the Coast Guard, in consultation with the Secretary of State, may— “(1) establish, as an element of the Program, a training program to create designated maritime law enforcement officers; “(2) conduct training jointly with Canada, including training— “(A) on the detection and apprehension of suspected terrorists and individuals attempting to unlawfully cross or unlawfully use the international maritime border between the United States and Canada, to enhance border security; “(B) on the integration, analysis, and dissemination of port security information between the United States and Canada; “(C) on the respective policy, regulatory, and legal considerations related to the Program; “(D) on the use of force and maritime security; “(E) in operational procedures and protection of information and other sensitive information; and “(F) on preparedness and response to maritime terrorist incidents. “(d) Coordination.—The Secretary, acting through the Commandant of the Coast Guard, shall coordinate the Program with other similar border security and antiterrorism programs within the Department. “(e) Memoranda Of Agreement.—The Secretary may enter into any memorandum of agreement necessary to carry out the Program. “(f) Authorization Of Appropriations.—To carry out this section there is authorized to be appropriated to the Secretary $2,000,000 for each of the next two fiscal years.”. (b) Clerical Amendment.—The table of contents in section 1(b) of such Act is amended by adding at the end of the items relating to such subtitle the following new item: “Sec.432.Integrated cross-border maritime operations between the United States and Canada.”. SEC. 113. TRAINING AND CERTIFICATION OF TRAINING FOR PORT SECURITY. (a) Use Of Port Security Grant Funds.—Section 70107(b)(8) of title 46, United States Code, is amended to read as follows: “(8) The cost of training and certifying a law enforcement officer employed by a law enforcement agency under section 70132 of this title.”. (b) Matching Requirement.—Section 70107(c)(2)(C) of such title is amended to read as follows: “(C) TRAINING AND CERTIFICATION.—There are no matching requirements for grants under subsection (a) to train and certify law enforcement personnel under section 70132 of this title.”. (c) Credentialing Standards, Training, And Certification.—Section 70132 of such title is amended as follows: (1) In the section heading, by striking “for State and local support for the enforcement of security zones for the transportation of especially hazardous cargo” and inserting “of maritime law enforcement personnel”. (2) By amending subsection (a) to read as follows: “(a) Standards.—The Commandant of the Coast Guard shall establish standards for training, qualification, and certification of a law enforcement officer employed by a law enforcement agency, to conduct or execute, pursuant to a cooperative enforcement agreement, maritime security, maritime law enforcement, and maritime surge capacity activities.”. (3) In subsection (b)(1), by amending subparagraphs (A) and (B) to read as follows: “(A) after notice and opportunity for public comment, may develop and publish training curricula for the standards established under subsection (a); and “(B) may— “(i) test and deliver training for which the curriculum is developed under subparagraph (A); “(ii) enter into an agreement under which any Federal, State, local, tribal, or private sector entity may test and deliver such training; and “(iii) accept the results of training conducted by any Federal, State, local, tribal, or private sector entity under such an agreement.”. (4) By striking subsection (b)(2) and inserting the following: “(2) Any training developed under paragraph (1) after the date of enactment of the SMART Port Security Act shall be developed in consultation with the Federal Law Enforcement Training Center.”. (5) In subsection (b)(4)— (A) by inserting after “any moneys,” the following: “other than an allocation made under the Dingell-Johnson Sport Fish Restoration Act (16 U.S.C. 777 et seq.),”; and (B) by striking “training of personnel to assist in the enforcement of security zones and limited access areas” and inserting “training and certifying personnel under this section”. (6) By striking subsection (c) and inserting the following: “(c) Certification Of Personnel.—The Commandant of the Coast Guard may issue a certificate to law enforcement officer employed by a law enforcement agency, who has successfully completed training that the Commandant has developed under this section.”. (7) By adding at the end the following: “(d) Tactical Training For Law Enforcement Personnel.—The Commandant of the Coast Guard may make such training developed under this section available to law enforcement officers employed by a law enforcement agency, on either a reimbursable or a non-reimbursable basis, if the Commandant determines that— “(1) a member of the Coast Guard is unable or unavailable to undertake tactical training the authorization of which had been previously approved, and no other member of the Coast Guard is reasonably available to undertake such training; “(2) the inability or unavailability of Coast Guard personnel to undertake such training creates training capacity within the training program; and “(3) such training, if made available to such law enforcement officers, would contribute to achievement of the purposes of this section.”. (d) Conforming Amendment.—Chapter 701 of such title is amended— (1) by striking the heading for subchapter II and inserting the following: “Subchapter II—Port Security Training And Certification”; and (2) in the table of sections at the beginning of the chapter— (A) by striking the item relating to the heading for subchapter II and inserting the following: “SUBCHAPTER II—PORT SECURITY TRAINING AND CERTIFICATION”. and (B) by striking the item relating to section 70132 and inserting the following: “70132. Credentialing standards, training, and certification of maritime law enforcement personnel.”. (e) Technical Corrections.—Chapter 701 of such title is amended— (1) by moving sections 70122, 70123, 70124, and 70125 so as to appear at the end of subchapter I of such chapter; (2) in the table of sections at the beginning of the chapter, in the item relating to section 70107A, by adding at the end a period; and (3) by striking the heading for section 70124 and inserting the following: “§ 70124. Regulations”. SEC. 114. NORTHERN BORDER UNMANNED AERIAL VEHICLE PILOT PROJECT. (a) Research And Development.—The Secretary shall research and develop technologies to allow routine operation of medium-sized unmanned aerial vehicles, including autonomously piloted drones, within the national airspace for border and maritime security missions without any degradation of existing levels of security-related surveillance or of safety for all national airspace system users. (b) Pilot Project.—No later than 180 days after the date of enactment of this Act, the Secretary shall commence a pilot project in segregated airspace along the northern border to conduct experiments and collect data in order to accelerate the safe integration of medium-sized unmanned aircraft systems into the national airspace system. SEC. 115. RECOGNITION OF PORT SECURITY ASSESSMENTS CONDUCTED BY OTHER ENTITIES. Section 70108 of title 46, United States Code, is amended by adding at the end the following new subsection: “(f) Recognition Of Assessment Conducted By Other Entities.— “(1) CERTIFICATION AND TREATMENT OF ASSESSMENTS.—For the purposes of this section and section 70109, the Secretary may treat an assessment conducted by a foreign government or international organization as an assessment by the Secretary required by subsection (a), if the Secretary certifies that the assessment was conducted in accordance with subsection (b). “(2) AUTHORIZATION TO ENTER INTO AGREEMENTS OR ARRANGEMENTS.—The Secretary may enter into an agreement or arrangement with a foreign government or international organization, under which— “(A) such government or organization may, on behalf of the Secretary, conduct an assessment required under subsection (a), or share with the Secretary information pertaining to such assessments; and “(B) the Secretary may, on behalf of such foreign government or organization, conduct an assessment described in subsection (a), or share with such foreign government or organization information pertaining to such assessments. “(3) LIMITATIONS.—Nothing in this subsection— “(A) requires the Secretary to recognize an assessment that a foreign government or an international organization conducts pursuant to this subsection; or “(B) limits the discretion or ability of the Secretary to conduct an assessment under this section. “(4) NOTIFICATION.—Not later than 30 days before entering into an agreement or arrangement with a foreign government under paragraph (2), the Secretary shall notify the appropriate congressional committees of the proposed terms of such agreement or arrangement.”. SEC. 116. USE OF PORT SECURITY GRANT FUNDS FOR REPLACEMENT OF SECURITY EQUIPMENT OR FACILITIES. Section 70107(b)(2) of title 46, United States Code, is amended by inserting “(including replacement)” after “acquisition”. TITLE II—MARITIME SUPPLY CHAIN SECURITY SEC. 201. STRATEGIC PLAN TO ENHANCE THE SECURITY OF THE INTERNATIONAL SUPPLY CHAIN. Section 201 of the SAFE Port Act (6 U.S.C. 941) is amended— (1) by amending subsection (b) to read as follows: “(b) Requirements.—The strategic plan required under subsection (a), and any updates to the strategic plan required under subsection (g), shall— “(1) identify and address gaps and unnecessary redundancies or overlaps in the roles, responsibilities, or authorities of the agencies responsible for securing the supply chain, including— “(A) any unnecessary redundancies or overlaps in Federal transportation security credentialing programs; and “(B) any unnecessary redundancies or overlaps in Federal trusted shipper or trusted trader programs; “(2) review ongoing efforts to align activities throughout the Federal Government to— “(A) improve coordination among the agencies referred to in paragraph (1); “(B) facilitate the efficient flow of legitimate commerce; “(C) enhance the security of the international supply chain; or “(D) address any gaps or overlaps described in paragraph (1); “(3) identify further regulatory or organizational changes necessary to— “(A) improve coordination among the agencies referred to in paragraph (1); “(B) facilitate the efficient flow of legitimate commerce; “(C) enhance the security of the international supply chain; or “(D) address any gaps or overlaps described in paragraph (1); “(4) provide measurable goals, including objectives, mechanisms, and a schedule, for furthering the security of commercial operations from point of origin to point of destination; “(5) build on available resources and consider costs and benefits; “(6) recommend additional incentives for voluntary measures taken by private sector entities to enhance supply chain security, including additional incentives for such entities participating in the Customs-Trade Partnership Against Terrorism in accordance with sections 214, 215, and 216; “(7) consider the impact of supply chain security requirements on small- and medium- sized companies; “(8) identify a framework for prudent and measured response in the event of a transportation security incident involving the international supply chain; “(9) provide updated protocols for the expeditious resumption of the flow of trade in accordance with section 202; “(10) review and address implementation of lessons learned from recent exercises conducted under sections 114 and 115, and other international supply chain security, response, or recovery exercises that the Department participates in, as appropriate; “(11) consider the linkages between supply chain security and security programs within other systems of movement, including travel security and terrorism finance programs; “(12) be informed by technologies undergoing research, development, testing, and evaluation by the Department; and “(13) expand upon and relate to existing strategies and plans for securing supply chains, including the National Response Plan, the National Maritime Transportation Security Plan, the National Strategy for Maritime Security, and the eight supporting plans of such National Strategy for Maritime Security, as required by Homeland Security Presidential Directive 13.”; (2) in subsection (g)— (A) in the heading for paragraph (2), by striking “Final” and inserting “Updated”; and (B) by adding at the end the following new paragraphs: “(3) FINAL REPORT.—Not later than two years after the date on which the update of the strategic plan is submitted under paragraph (2), the Secretary shall submit to the appropriate congressional committees a report that contains a further update of the strategic plan. “(4) IMPLEMENTATION PLAN.—Not later than one year after the date on which the final update of the strategic plan is submitted under paragraph (3), the Secretary shall submit to the appropriate congressional committees an implementation plan for carrying out the strategic plan.”; and (3) by adding at the end the following new subsection: “(h) Threat Assessment.—In developing the reports and implementation plan required under subsection (g), the Secretary shall take into account an assessment of the current threats to the global supply chain.”. SEC. 202. CUSTOMS-TRADE PARTNERSHIP AGAINST TERRORISM. (a) Unannounced Inspections.—Section 217(a) of the SAFE Port Act (6 U.S.C. 967(a)) is amended— (1) by striking “If at any time” and inserting the following: “(1) FAILURE TO MEET REQUIREMENTS.—If at any time”; and (2) by inserting after paragraph (1), as redesignated, the following new paragraph: “(2) UNANNOUNCED INSPECTIONS.—The Secretary, acting through the Commissioner, may conduct an unannounced inspection of a C-TPAT participant’s security measures and supply chain security practices if the Commissioner determines, based on previously identified deficiencies in security measures and supply chain security practices of the C-TPAT participant, that there is a likelihood that such an inspection would assist in confirming the security measures in place and further the validation process.”. (b) Private Sector Information Sharing On Security And Terrorism Threats.—Subsection (d) of section 216 of the SAFE Port Act (6 U.S.C. 966) is amended to read as follows: “(d) Private Sector Information Sharing On Security And Terrorism Threats.— “(1) IN GENERAL.—The Secretary shall promote information sharing, as appropriate, between and among the Department and C-TPAT participants and other private entities regarding— “(A) potential vulnerabilities, attacks, and exploitations of the international supply chain; and “(B) means and methods of preventing, responding to, and mitigating consequences from the vulnerabilities, attacks, and exploitations described in subparagraph (A). “(2) CONTENTS.—The information sharing required under paragraph (1) may include— “(A) the creation of classified and unclassified means of accessing information that may be used by appropriately cleared personnel and that will provide, as appropriate, ongoing situational awareness of the security of the international supply chain; and “(B) the creation of guidelines to establish a mechanism by which owners and operators of international supply chain infrastructure may report actual or potential security breaches.”. SEC. 203. RECOGNITION OF OTHER COUNTRIES’ TRUSTED SHIPPER PROGRAMS. Section 218 of the SAFE Port Act (6 U.S.C. 968) is amended by adding at the end the following new subsection: “(j) Recognition Of Other Countries’ Trusted Shipper Programs.—Not later than 30 days before signing an arrangement between the United States and a foreign government providing for mutual recognition of supply chain security practices which might result in the utilization of benefits described in section 214, 215, or 216, the Secretary shall— “(1) notify the appropriate congressional committees of the proposed terms of such arrangement; and “(2) determine, in consultation with the Commissioner, that the foreign government’s supply chain security program provides comparable security as that provided by C-TPAT.”. SEC. 204. PILOT PROGRAM FOR INCLUSION OF NON-ASSET BASED THIRD PARTY LOGISTICS PROVIDERS IN THE CUSTOMS-TRADE PARTNERSHIP AGAINST TERRORISM. (a) In General.—Not later than 180 days after the date of the enactment of this Act, the Secretary shall develop a pilot program to determine whether allowing non-asset based third party logistics providers that arrange international transportation of freight to participate in the Customs-Trade Partnership Against Terrorism program, as described in section 211 of the SAFE Port Act (6 U.S.C. 961), would enhance port security, combat terrorism, prevent supply chain security breaches, or meet the goals of the Customs-Trade Partnership Against Terrorism established pursuant to section 211 of the SAFE Port Act (6 U.S.C. 961). (b) Requirements.— (1) VOLUNTARY PARTICIPATION.—Participation by non-asset based third party logistics providers that arrange international transportation of freight taking part in the pilot program shall be voluntary. (2) MINIMUM NUMBER.—The Secretary shall ensure that not fewer than five non-asset based third party logistics providers that arrange international transportation of freight take part in the pilot program. (3) DURATION.—The pilot program shall be conducted for a minimum duration of one year. (c) Report.—Not later than 180 days after the conclusion of the pilot program, the Secretary shall submit to the appropriate congressional committees a report on the findings and any recommendations of the pilot program concerning the participation in the Customs-Trade Partnership Against Terrorism of non-asset based third party logistics providers that arrange international transportation of freight to combat terrorism and prevent supply chain security breaches. SEC. 205. TRANSPORTATION WORKER IDENTIFICATION CREDENTIAL PROCESS REFORM. (a) Sense Of Congress.—To avoid further imposing unnecessary and costly regulatory burdens on United States workers and businesses, it is the sense of Congress that it is urgent that the Transportation Worker Identification Credential (in this section referred to as the “TWIC”) application process be reformed. (b) TWIC Application Reform.—Not later than 270 days after the date of the enactment of this Act, the Secretary shall reform the process for the enrollment, activation, issuance, and renewal of a TWIC to require, in total, not more than one in-person visit to a designated enrollment center except in cases in which there are extenuating circumstances, as determined by the Secretary, requiring more than one such in-person visit. SEC. 206. EXPIRATION OF CERTAIN TRANSPORTATION WORKER IDENTIFICATION CREDENTIALS. (a) In General.—A valid Transportation Worker Identification Credential required under part 101.514 of title 33, Code of Federal Regulations, that was issued before the date of enactment of this Act shall not expire before the deadline for full implementation of a final rule issued by the Secretary for electronic readers designed to work with Transportation Worker Identification Credentials as an access control and security measure issued pursuant to the advanced notice of proposed rulemaking published March 27, 2009 (74 Fed. Reg. 58), as established by the final rule. (b) Revocation Authority Not Affected.—This section shall not be construed to affect the authority of the Secretary to revoke a Transportation Worker Identification Credential— (1) based on information that the holder is not qualified to hold such credential; or (2) if the credential is lost, damaged, or stolen. SEC. 207. SECURING THE TRANSPORTATION WORKER IDENTIFICATION CREDENTIAL AGAINST USE BY UNAUTHORIZED ALIENS. (a) Process.— (1) IN GENERAL.—Not later than 180 days after the date of enactment of this Act, the Secretary shall establish a process to ensure, to the maximum extent practicable, that an individual who is not lawfully present in the United States cannot obtain or continue to use a Transportation Worker Identification Credential (in this section referred to as the “TWIC”). (2) COMPONENTS.—In establishing the process under subsection (a), the Secretary shall— (A) publish a list of documents that will identify non-United States citizen TWIC applicants and verify their immigration statuses by requiring each such applicants to produce a document or documents that demonstrate— (i) identity; and (ii) proof of lawful presence in the United States; and (B) establish training requirements to ensure that trusted agents at TWIC enrollment centers receive training to identify fraudulent documents. (b) Expiration Of TWICs.—A TWIC expires on the date of its expiration, or in the date on which the individual to whom such a TWIC is issued is no longer lawfully present in the United States, whichever is earlier. SEC. 208. REPORT ON FEDERAL TRANSPORTATION SECURITY CREDENTIALING PROGRAMS. Not later than 180 days after the date of the enactment of this Act, the Secretary shall submit to the appropriate congressional committees a report that identifies unnecessary redundancies or overlaps in Federal transportation security credentialing programs, including recommendations to reduce or eliminate such redundancies or overlaps. PES: Securing Maritime Activities through Risk-based Targeting for Port Security Act or the SMART Port Security Act - Title I: Department of Homeland Security Port Security Programs - (Sec. 101) Directs the Secretary of Homeland Security (DHS): (1) to submit a plan for the coordination and cooperation of maritime operations undertaken by DHS agencies that updates the plan released by DHS in July 2011; and (2) acting through DHS's Office of Operations Coordination and Planning, to submit an additional update to such plan. (Sec. 102) Requires any new asset deployment by the U.S. Customs and Border Protection's (CBP's) Office of Air and Marine to occur in accordance with a risk-based assessment that considers mission needs, performance results, threats, costs, and other specified factors. (Sec. 103) Directs the Secretary to conduct a cost-benefit analysis to consider potential savings derived from co-locating aviation and maritime operational assets of Office locations that are within 25 miles of locations where any other DHS agency also operates such assets. (Sec. 104) Directs the Comptroller General to: (1) review port security and maritime law enforcement operations within DHS to identify initiatives and programs with duplicative, overlapping, or redundant goals and activities and recommend actions to reduce unnecessary duplication; and (2) submit a report that analyzes and compares the costs, capabilities, and missions of different aviation assets utilized by DHS to assess the relative costs and any benefits of unmanned aerial vehicles compared to manned aviation assets. (Sec. 105) Directs the Secretary to: (1) coordinate across DHS agencies before initiating the acquisition of any new boat or aviation asset; (2) establish a coordinating mechanism for aviation and maritime issues in order to decrease procurement and operational costs and increase efficiencies; (3) approve or disapprove a complete application under the Port Security Grant Program within 60 days of submission; (4) submit an assessment of interagency operational centers for port security, the deployment of interoperable communications equipment to such centers, and center mission execution and support activities; (5) submit a report analyzing the threat of, vulnerability to, and consequence of a terrorist act using a small vessel to attack U.S. vessels, ports, or maritime interests; and (6) submit a plan for optimizing CBP staffing levels. (Sec. 112) Amends the Homeland Security Act of 2002 to authorize the Secretary to establish an Integrated Cross-Border Maritime Operations Program to coordinate maritime security operations between the United States and Canada. Directs the Commandant of the Coast Guard to administer the Program in a manner that results in a cooperative approach between the United States and Canada to strengthen border security and to detect, prevent, suppress, investigate, and respond to terrorism and violations of law related to border security. Authorizes the Commandant to: (1) establish, as an element of the Program, a training program to create designated maritime law enforcement officers; and (2) conduct training jointly with Canada, including training on the detection and apprehension of suspected terrorists and individuals attempting to unlawfully cross the U.S.-Canada border and on the integration, analysis, and dissemination of port security information between the United States and Canada. Authorizes appropriations for FY2013-FY2014. (Sec. 113) Authorizes the use of port security grant funds to cover the cost of certifying a law enforcement officer employed to enforce security zones for the transportation of especially hazardous cargo. Directs the Commandant to establish standards for training, qualification, and certification of a law enforcement officer employed by a law enforcement agency to conduct or execute maritime security, maritime law enforcement, and maritime surge capacity activities pursuant to a cooperative enforcement agreement. Authorizes the Commandant to: (1) issue a certificate to a law enforcement officer who has successfully completed training that the Commandant developed; and (2) make such training available a to officers of a law enforcement agency if a Coast Guard member is unable or unavailable to undertake tactical training previously approved, no other Coast Guard member is reasonable available to undertake such training, such inability or unavailability creates capacity within the training program, and making such training available to such law enforcement officers would contribute to achievement of the purposes of providing such training. (Sec. 114) Directs the Secretary to: (1) research and develop technologies to allow routine operation of medium-sized unmanned aerial vehicles, including autonomously piloted drones, within the national airspace for border and maritime security missions without any degradation of existing levels of security-related surveillance or of safety for all national airspace system users; and (2) commence a pilot project in segregated airspace along the northern border to conduct experiments and collect data in order to accelerate the safe integration of medium-sized unmanned aircraft systems into the national airspace system. (Sec. 115) Authorizes the Secretary to: (1) treat a foreign port security assessment conducted by a foreign government or international organization as an assessment by the Secretary if the Secretary certifies that it was conducted in accordance with existing security effectiveness requirements; and (2) enter into an agreement or arrangement under which a foreign government or international organization may conduct a required assessment of the antiterrorism measures at a foreign port on behalf of the Secretary, or share with the Secretary information pertaining to such assessments, or under which the Secretary may conduct such an assessment on behalf of such government or organization, or share with such government or organization information pertaining to such assessments. (Sec. 116) Includes replacement costs of security equipment or facilities among eligible costs for funding under port security grants. Title II: Maritime Supply Chain Security - (Sec. 201) Amends the SAFE Port Act to: (1) revise requirements for the strategic plan to enhance the security of the international supply chain, including to add requirements to identify redundancies or overlaps in federal transportation security credentialing programs and to make recommendations for facilitating the efficient flow of legitimate commerce; and (2) require the Secretary to submit an additional update to, and an implementation plan for, such strategic plan and to consider current threats to the global supply chain. (Sec. 202) Authorizes the CBP Commissioner to conduct an unannounced inspection of a Customs-Trade Partnership Against Terrorism (C-TPAT) participant's security measures and practices upon determining, based on previously identified deficiencies, that there is a likelihood that such an inspection would assist in confirming the security measures in place and further the validation process. Directs the Secretary to promote information sharing among DHS and C-TPAT participants and other private entities regarding: (1) potential vulnerabilities, attacks, and exploitations of the international supply chain; and (2) means and methods of preventing, responding to, and mitigating consequences from such vulnerabilities, attacks, and exploitations. (Sec. 203) Directs the Secretary, before negotiating or signing any arrangement between the United States and a foreign government providing for mutual recognition of supply chain security practices, to determine and notify Congress that the foreign government's program provides comparable security to that provided by C-TPAT. (Sec. 204) Requires the Secretary to develop a pilot program to determine whether allowing non-asset based third party logistics providers that arrange international transportation of freight to participate in C-TPAT would enhance port security, combat terrorism, prevent supply chain security breaches, or meet C-TPAT goals. Requires: (1) participation by such providers to be voluntary, (2) the Secretary to ensure that not fewer than five such providers take part in the pilot program, (3) the pilot program to be conducted for at least a year, and (4) the Secretary to report on the findings and any recommendations concerning the participation of such providers in C-TPAT to combat terrorism and prevent supply chain security breaches. (Sec. 205) Expresses the sense of Congress that it is urgent that the Transportation Worker Identification Credential (TWIC) application process be reformed. Directs the Secretary to reform the process for the enrollment, activation, issuance, and renewal of a TWIC to require not more than one in-person visit to a designated enrollment center, except under extenuating circumstances. (Sec. 206) Provides that a valid TWIC that was issued before the date of this Act's enactment shall not expire before the deadline for full implementation of a final rule for electronic readers designed to work with TWICs as an access control and security measure. (Sec. 207) Directs the Secretary to establish a process to ensure that an individual who is not lawfully present in the United States cannot obtain or continue to use a TWIC. (Sec. 208) Directs the Secretary to submit to the appropriate congressional committees a report that identifies unnecessary redundancies or overlaps in federal transportation security credentialing programs and recommendations to reduce or eliminate such redundancies or overlaps.
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