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tv   U.S. Senate  CSPAN  August 17, 2009 12:00pm-5:00pm EDT

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got a fair trial and were justly sentenced to the constitutional sentence of life without parole. to date, we haven't had this type of debate. we haven't had the ability to take a holistic view of what is happening in the country and that is why i launch this study a year and a half ago after attending a symposium in monterey, calif. where i learned california was attempting, through some state legislatures, to abolish the sentence of life without parole for juvenile killers, abolish it. understand this, these artifacts. 43 states, through their elected representatives, the voice of the people, have authorized life without the possibility of parole for juvenile killers and violent scenes. that is well over 90% of thetee. that is well over 90% of the
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population of this country. stick of columbia has authorized life without parole for juvenile killers. our federal government, 43 states, one of the most liberal district in the country in d.c. has authorized that sentence. those are facts. yet when you listen to the incarceration activists button, you would think the society is not there and that is not where this country is. they are wrong. ..
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>> he is talking about what the court talk about, is whether or not this punishment, is grossly disproportionate to the crime committed by this person. as authorized by state law. now you wouldn't know this, if you have been paying attention to or following the anti-incarceration act over the last 10 years. you wouldn't know this if you read their briefs before state supreme court, like in the torres case or even in the u.s. supreme court in the petition for sir shari, which was granted the spring. anagram and sullivan cases which are coming out of florida. question before the court in
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those cases, and you pick those cases wisely, pick two people who did not commit murder but who committed horrible crimes before they were 18, is whether the sentence they justly received after a fair trial, life without the possibility of parole, is constitutional. they have failed to convince state legislatures to abolish the senses. they have failed to convince state supreme court to find in these sentences unconstitutional. they have failed to get federal judges around the country to find these sentences unconstitutional. and so they are trying to make a constitutional end run around the representatives of the people, and all the other judges and justices who look at this to discover a new right. a right which, and i use quotations, a right which will jeopardize all noncapital sentences, potentially. it will essentially a loud
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judges taken to its illogical extreme to engage in a joke ball on every sentencing of every individual before them. the court has never allowed that and i predict they won't allow that in this case. one of the -- i did not believe my friend in california when she told me that the anti-incarceration act in these republished reports depicting pictures of eight, nine -year-olds on the front covers of the reports because i knew, as a criminal defense attorney, and prosecutor, and now a sitting judge in the military, that nobody, no state sentences eight or nine -year-olds, tiger scouts essentially, we blows, to
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life without parole for any crime they permit. they go into the juvenile justice system. and even if, for one reason or another would go to an adult court, if they were 10 or so they will not get life without parole. so much to my surprise, i looked at a few of the report she was talking about. and this is what spurred me to conduct a comprehensive research project. here is a picture, clearly of a little boy. if i took a poll in this room you would all say he is probably six, seven, eight use old, an actor, not a defendant. get this on the front cover of one of the lead reports that the anti-cars ration act had out there suggesting the legislators and judges, etc., that this poor little fellow, this child committed a crime and is serving
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life without parole. is not. and look at all of the other reports out there. this is one by the equal justice commission, which is down in, i think it's alabama. here is a picture of an actor, a boy, who probably, you know, plays in his little league baseball squad and probably just ended up playing marbles a few weeks before. but there are numerous pictures throughout these reports of child actors, which are there to pull your heart strings. they are in these reports to lead people who aren't going to think about it, like some people who have a busy calendar, schedule, busy legislative agenda, that this is typically the type of kid who is sentenced to life without parole. but it gets better. the roper decision is a death
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penalty decision. and roper himself brought about his client before he committed it, deliberated, and he committed a. and the supreme court found that his death sentence was unconstitutional. but what the anti-incarceration act now has attempted to do is take the language and logic of roper and imported out of the -- into a non-death penalty arena of life without parole. and they use almost laughable language, like sensing our children to die in prison. it is not a death penalty case. to life without parole case. and if you look, there is a very unsettled coordination between yet well-funded movement suggesting that, they never used the word juvenile, which all of
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us use in our practices. all the judges use it on all other criminal justices use a. they teenagers. hithe united states has the wort crime problem in the western world. we do. if you look at my report, i look at the un statistics and the world health organization's statistics to show that we lead the western work in juvenile crime and have done so for decades. juveniles commit murder, rape, robbery, aggravated assault and other serious crimes in numbers that dwarf those of america's international peers. you see, the campaign so far is essentially wrapped into these principles. all the countries are the same around the world. the u.s. has life without
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parole. other countries do not. we are in violation of international norms. all countries are essentially the same. these are children. we are mean. and by the way, we are in violation of international treaties. all of which is demonstrably false, and we go through it page by page, chapter by chapter, in this report. in a highly footnoted report. and unlike reports of the other side, we traced back to original sources and tell you everything we consulted and every single footnote in our report. between 1980 and 2005, 43621 juveniles were arrested for murder in the united states. and the pictures just as bleak with respect to rape, 109,563. robbery, 818,278. and aggravated assault,
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1,240,199. that is uncontroverted. yet when you compare the statistics with us against the rest of the world, you see that we dwarf western europe and the rest of the world in terms of our crime statistics. we have a big problem. we could debate and discuss what those problems are and what the roots of it are and how we should address those, and i think that is an ongoing worthy debate. but the fact are the facts. let me give you an example. this is in chapter three of the paper.
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in 1998 alone, 24,537,600 reported crimes were committed in the united states. that means i've be 72 countries that reported thei that their statistics to the un that year, that year was no different than the other years, we ranked first in reported crimes. and back, the united states reported more crimes than the next six countries, germany, england and widows, france, south africa, russia and canada combined. and the picture is just as bleak with respect to juvenile crime. and so it should come as no surprise to any of us in this room, i hope, that states over
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the years have responded to this explosion in juvenile crime by making some laws applicable to juveniles. and over the years, making it possible for the government and the state to waive or push juveniles from juvenile court to adult court for certain specific heinous crimes like murder, rape, aggravated robbery, aggravated assault and kidnapping, extortion, bob making, terrorist threats and those things. and for a very small percentage of those, you have the possibility of life without parole for juvenile killers. the other thing that you see, have seen to date is this notion put out by the amnesty international watch which is the
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lead report in this area that there are 2225 juveniles in the united states serving life without parole. folks, that number is a fallacy. is a manufactured statistic. we go through their very own report, including their footnotes, and show the methodological flaws in their report. first off, it is true, as they know, that there is no one repository within the department of justice or in each of the 50 states, or district of columbia, that keeps the statistics of how many juveniles are serving without the possibility of parole. now, there is a division in the department of justice that keeps that for 23 states, but not all states. and so, instead of accepting those statistics which is a little over 1100, or so, juveniles serving life without possibility of parole in those 43 states, they manufacture
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assumptions. they assume for instance, that it takes around two years between the time of arrest to the time somebody gets sent to jail, which we know from our analysis that often times it takes much less time, often months or weeks. many of the juveniles who commit these crimes are caught quickly and take a sentence or a trial quickly and they are sent to jail. yet what you see is this number picked up by the liberal media, pushed before state legislators when they are trying to abolish the sentence, and put in court documents. in fact, in the brief before the supreme court right now they boldly assert like they did in the torres case that there are 2225 juveniles serving life without the possibility of parole. it is a manufactured statistic. and let me turn finally to the suggestion that we are in violation of international law.
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and that can be found on page 41. 41, of the report. many proponents for juvenile killers and violent teens suggest that because there's this convention other called a convention of the rights of a child, that's it. there's a convention out there. get banned for life without possibility of parole for juvenile killers and violent teens and they therefore, since we have it we are in violation of the treaty. well, there is a slight problem with that. we haven't ratified convention of the rights of the child. that would seem to end the discussion, but they don't and their assertions there. they assert that well, even we haven't ratified it, it's customary international law, sort of a last, desperate
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advocate. and we explain why not only is it not customary international law, why we have no obligation whatsoever to over -- to violate the will of the people as expressed in their state representative and state lawmakers. they also plan that we are in violation of the icc br which is another civil rights treaty and the convention against torture. yet, they fail to mention that we have taken exceptions, called reservations in international law to the provisions there that would hint at long sentences for juveniles. by the way, neither of those treaties bans life without parole for juveniles at all. i know a little bit about the convention against torture because i was the lead dod delegate to geneva when we submitted our last periodic report into thought and six.
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so i am intimately familiar with the convention that they say we are in violation of, which we are not. and finally, i will leave you with this. as you can see in the book, we wrote 243 different d.a. officers around the country. we asked for case digest from those d.a. offices around the country where the person got life without also building of parole as a sentence. we asked for original court documents. court findings, judges 90s, police reports, to get an accurate picture of the real crime in the real facts that these juveniles did. and what we found was vastly different than the glossed over non-culpable language they include in their reports. and i will leave you with one small snippet of one of the 16 case studies, which is found prominently in some of the activists case reports.
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and that is the case of ashley jones. ashley judd is a 14 year old juvenile when she committed her crime. she is the cause celeb of many on the left. and yet if you read their description of what she did, your left is sort of scratching your head dosh, why did actually get the life without the possibility of parole? well, then you can make up your mind. and this is just one of many of the cases sense that they have put out there. this is the entire case of the quote unquote facts at the activists have put out there regarding ashley jones. and then i will be jail the facts as found by the judge. quote, at 14, actually try to escape the violence and abuse by running away with an older boyfriend who shot and killed her grandfather aunt, grandmother and sister who are injured during the events who
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wanted actually to come home. that, what actually did, according to the other side. and when you read the judge's findings, which can be found on page 26. and i will not read the whole thing. we are running out of time. you find out quite a different story. ashley jones stabbed her father and pregnant mother in 1998, killing neither, and so she and her younger sister were sent to live with her grandparents and aunt. this was before the event where she got life without parole. in late august of that year, her grandparents were getting tired of her bad behavior and grounded her for staying out all might at a party. they did not approve of her boyfriend, jeremy hart, and told her -- told him not to visit their house, and this made
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ashley jones angry. and so ashley jones and he decided to kill everyone in the house. set it on fire and take their money. to prepare, ashley jones stole two of her grandfather's guns and smuggle them out of the house today. she mixed together firestarter in anticipation of setting the house ablaze. this is from the judges findings. it took the young couple today to put their plan into action, and on the evening of august 30, 1999, she kept an eye on her relatives until they had settled in for the evening when she called her boyfriend who arrived around 11:15 at that night and she let him in the house. he was doing the 38 revolver taken from her grandfather. they been snuck into the den where her grandfather was watching tv. hart shot him twice in the face. still alive, he stumbled toward the kitchen. next they visited the bedroom of her aunt and shot her three
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times. sing that her and was still breathing, ashley judd hitter in the head with a portable heater, stabbed her in the chest and attempted to set the room on fire. the gunshots awakened jones' grandmother and she got out of bed. that was when jones and hart entered the bedroom and shot her once in the shoulder. and with the last bullet jones and then hart return to the den and discovered their grandfather was to live. with nice from the kitchen they stabbed him over and over again and left one knife embedded in his back. these are the judges findings. ashley jones portal lighter fluid and listen to him groan as he burned alive. the noise attracted jones' tenure old sister, mary. to the kitchen. from acey ducey that her grandfather was burning. soon after the wounded kid called out to her dying husband and ashley jones stabbed her mother in the face with an ice pick, poured lighter fluid on her ancestor on fire and watch her burn. she ended up stabbing her 10
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year old sister numerous times and left everyone to die. she then took $300 from her grandparents matters and took the keys to their cadillac and the boyfriend and girlfriend drove off for a fun night of partying. and when the news the next morning, the sister survived and ashley said quote i thought i kill that. she was sentenced to life without the possibility of parole, and the judge when she sentenced ashley said quote she did not express genuine remorse for her actions, although she apologize her words were hollow and insincere. for the more it was brought to the attention of the court that while awaiting her sins and the defendant has threatened other female inmates in the jefferson county jail by telling them she would do the same thing to them that she had done to her family. these are the facts. they are not pretty.
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but we need to have now an open, honest and forthright discussion going forward. paul. >> i'm going to talk about some things that my life that i have not spoken about in public before. actually have some questions about you folks out here before i started. i know some people in this group your company of these people by a show of your hand have had family members murdered? >> how may people here are from brooks are associated with groups that are in favor of having parole for juveniles with life sentences? i don't see anybody responding to that. of the people who have had family members murdered, have any of you ever been approached
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by these groups that want to change the sentencing structure and to allow parole for juveniles? anybody? one. you are the head of an organization. okay. my experience is this. i start my career in alameda count, a system of very, very aggressive prosecution of crimes. the system of the prosecutors were trained by people, and they played fair. they weren' were ethical but the tough. when i hear examples of these juveniles who have essentially been not guilty of any major crime and they are sentenced to a life without the possibility of parole, and i see human rights groups and we have to help these children, i am saying yes, help them, help them.
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and yet i look at the fact that i go wait a minute. these facts can't be right i know some of the prosecutors involved. they would never do that. i know the law, and a kid who never used a gun was given a ten-year enhancement which only comes when you have used the gun so the facts are wrong. and i recognize that the people have done these series of studies on this issue understand what i understand, that there are certain people who have done crimes that are so heinous, that if they are let out, they will do it again. and i understand that if there are people who are given life without parole who don't deserve it, convicted where they are not really guilty, obviously we have to get them out or help them. that somehow kids act on the life without parole system is an attack on all of us, that it is
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an attack on people who want to be safe. now, i have been an attorney milewide and when i came home on october 15, 2005, i had been representing a woman who was abused from her late teens years by her therapist. she married him, and 25 years later killed him. and my defense was that the abuse she suffered help justify what she did, maybe not as a full excuse but it was not the same as cold-blooded murder. but when i came home, what i found is my wife lying on the floor, beaten, blood everywhere. sprayed on the walls. furniture moved. what i didn't see was the fact that as she lay there dying but
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alive, the perpetrator had taken a night and opened up her belly to remove her organs when she was alive. and that when she died, he carved into her back, this time, his symbol, a satanic symbol that he used on his, and i can tell you that i, when he finally was caught, probably every single person who has suffered the same thing, i wanted to kill him. i wanted him dead. but society doesn't do what i want. society is civilized. and society placed him on trial, gave him a great attorney. a fantastic defense, and he was convicted, and vengeance was never extracted. he was put away for the rest of his life without parole so that he will not hurt anyone again. in time, this security
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classification will draw. he will be able to marry, have conjugal visits, and communicate with family members and his groupies who think he is a cute man. good looking. just like the night stalker. he has a life, but he will not be able to take a life unless it is of another prisoner and he is going to have a hard time. >> so vengeance doesn't belong to the victims even though we may want it. justice belongs to society. because what he did was so horrific that if he ever gets out he will do it again. you know, he studied being a serial killer. he read books about it. he planned it. he beat her with a rock slowly so he could watch her die. at the trial, i watched the pretrial hearings. he never showed any remorse, but
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he showed a great fascination when the pictures of pamela slaughtered were put up on the screen. he was fascinated. i thought i was the only one seeing it but the judge commented on that at sentencing. but who are these people who want to allow somebody like him to get the least on parole or at least the possibility of release? he put forth a bill that was totally revamp california's sentencing. it would allow somebody like scott to get a parole hearing if he could prove to a judge that he was remorseful. what does remorseful mean? well, we morsel is the word that senator yee used in his bill. but the definition of remorseful. he took a course, when available, in prison to further himself an education. he has contacts with other people when he was in prison.
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scott keeps contacts. but the people on websites say he is innocent, despite the statements that he made about seeing pamela on the road and reaching out and grabbing his arm is may have she got his dna on her body. that's the story, driving on the road. well, i will teo, he told the truth about one thing. as he was slaughtering her, i am sure pamela said this can't be happening. and they found his dna on her body as she fought back. and his bloody footprint and the house. this is what convicted him. this is what convicted him, and his website to raise money, thousands of dollars to help set him free. and at his parole hearing, those people will be their funding him, advocating for him, his mother who came onto the
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property where she lived, where he had hidden in an abandoned truck, the bloody glove, the bloody evidence of the crime, she went into that truck and started to remove them to destroy them until a press helicopter came overhead and she got scared. she then went to a few hours away from our home and burned his diary. burned at the items that implicated him. his girlfriend's mother, who i now see, smiles at me, hi, she took evidence from her daughter of the murder. took it to be destroyed. at the trial, after first having called me on the phone, when we didn't know her son was the killer and said can i help? can i make you a casserole? at the trial, bashing me with her purse. she will be at the parole hearing saying her son is innocent. the mother of the girlfriend, saying he is a nice, young man. the two schoolteachers who could have stopped the crime.
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one, was the art teacher. e2 art showing the murderous acts that he was going to do towards pamela. he drew them in the abstract. she admitted on the witness stand that the rules in the school, when you see something disturbing like that, you go to the principle, you let the kid did help. she didn't do it because she thought he was autistic. she doesn't believe he committed a crime. she will be at the parole hearing. the teacher who thought he was cute. the ultimate frisbee teacher. she had a crush on him. like a schoolgirl crush. she thought he was a loner because he is sensitive. did nothing to help him. she will be at the parole hearing. she testified he didn't do it. you know who won't be at that parole hearing? i will not. because i am 54 years old. because having gone through that time period with pamela, my health is not the same as it was. i will not be there at that parole hearing. but these people will, and he
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will. and if he gets paroled, just rumor that he will be laughing. he will be laughing at this crime that he enjoyed. you will be laughing that as a serial killer, he fooled people and got out. i have represented for many year, and you might think that because i am realistic maybe i'm not such a good defense attorney. well, i have not lost a case in three, four days i lost one case and for years because i am real with my clients. i am realistic with them. and i know that when they are damaged in certain ways, they don't get better. they can control to some degree what they do, but they don't get better. why is it so easy for us to accept child molesters don't get better. we accept that. it is to. they don't. they control their behavior but with a little out of all, or an opportunity, they don't get better. but you, any of you, would you let a convicted child molester
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babysit your children know matter how much therapy they went through? no, you wouldn't. would you let a rapist be with your loved ones? no, they don't get better. it is the same cold-blooded murders. and i'm talking about situational murders or, you know, people are acting, maybe get under turkic distress. but murders to kill because it is what they want to do to suit their purpose, they don't get better. it is a way of being. and what i said to senator d., what i said on my website about this, what i say right now, i said you would release a person who has committed at the kind of murders that we have heard about here. would you invite into your home? judge, my client is innocent. my client could not have done this crime. would you invite into your house? and these people who want to
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release all juveniles on parole after a certain time, they believe that people change over time and their brain develops and they get better. that is not how it works. i know that from being there. what happens with juveniles who commit these heinous crimes, is that they are so broken that it manifests at a very young age and start fires. they hurt animals. they hurt people, at an age where other kids are playing ball or in school, doing school activities. if they are that damaged young, nothing miraculously happens to them in a 10, 20, 30 years that they are incarcerated except maybe they can learn how to act more normally. but what i have learned is that when the sheriff deputies or prison guards, giving them a very structured routine, a lot of people who wouldn't be heinous girls on the outside can
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function somewhat normal. but when you take those controls off of them and put them in life, and life is hard, life takes you, and life hurt you and life puts you down. when things go wrong, people do not have the tools. they lose control and they revert to who they are, do what they did. and that is not what every single juvenile offender. there is not every single murder, and when you talk about people like scott, it is true. and when you talk about a lot of evil in life without parole, it is true. let me tell you something. when i read these human rights watches, all of these other stories about these kids who are wrongly accused, or wrongly convicted, or way over convicted, if it wasn't real i would laugh. there is one that i read that comes from oakland so i know these people involved. the story goes, this young man and they don't give his last things we can't find the case. this young man heard that his
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friend was going to commit a robbery. to stop any violence from taking place, he went along. is trampled the gun and shot the store owner. he was then convicted and given life without parole, plus 10 years for use of the gun. well, i know the juvenile division, there are two of them that i know. one is a good friend of mine. he doesn't know about the case ricky never would have done that. and the other i had a case with him years ago, a drive-by. my client was in the car. a good kid except he went along with a drive-by. one kid was shot and killed and a young woman, an innocent woman was shot in the face. the deal was, my client testified, and he would be convicted but if he testified and apologized he would get two years in vision quest, sort of a boot camp. this is the same head of the office who supposedly let a kid
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who just went to a crime scene, to stop crying and get life without parole. no way. and then i know what judge is supposed to be because something in the sentencing the way the judge does things. and i asked the judge, do you know anything about this case? i had never heard about this case. you know, where a kid is not involved and i would never give a kid like that that kind of sense. and then when i looked again, it was 10 years for the gun. in california, it really use of the gun. so they lied about it. they lied about it. and every single story that i read in this human rights watch group is that the california state senate relied on to vote in favor of this bill seems ridiculous lately. you know, you have first evolved prosecutors who are not animals start as prosecutors. the regular people. they are not these.
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you would have to bab to try to put a kid who didn't pull a gun in order to stop a crime in prison for the rest of his life. second, you have to have a defense attorney who is totally incompetent. and then you would have to have a jury of 12 people who would vote guilty on something like that. would any of you? no. and then you have to have a judge to say life without parole or life with parole. you have to have a judge who is also a beast to do that kind of sending. and then you would have to have an appellate lawyer who doesn't raise the issue. and a court of appeals that ignores it. you would have to have so many people being incompetent and cruel. it is just ridiculous. so what is this debate about? why are they using these fake pictures, fake stories to advance a cause? truthfully, i don't have a clue, but i know what they are doing is wrong. i know that we have to stand up against these people. and the bottom line is this. we are all, even people who i don't agree politically on this
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issue, we are all against injustice. no system works when somebody is unjustly in prison or given a ridiculously harsh sentence. i have never met anybody, a rational person, this debate who wants to partially imprison juveniles to be mean. we want to imprison people who are going to come out and hurt again. and believe me, people on parole commits crimes again and again more than half of them do. when your release, these kinds of criminals on parole, whether they are adults, smarter, they know how to hide their crimes better, there will be more people like these people in the audience whose hearts are broken, whose families are broken forsake why did you let him out, leave him in jail. we don't get revenge, but nobody else gets hurt. that is why they are here and that is why i am here. >> ladies and gentlemen, this is the time when you have the
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opportunity to ask questions. and so if you will raise your hand and i will try to see through the slight. right over here. >> would you identify yourself and then ask a question. >> my name is ronald holt. i am a chicago police officer and i am here with cofounder jennifer bishop, and jody robertson and we are representing the national organization of victims of juvenile lifers. being an 18 year police officer in chicago, i have worked with gangs, at risk youth who have killed and belong to street gangs. they have committed a lot of gun crimes, and other felonies. moreover, my only son who was 16 years old, this is a picture of him, this is his last high school picture. he was 16 years old.
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making three weeks shy of his 17th birthday. he was gunned down on a bus, protecting a young lady, role-play, for other young people were shot as well. unfortunately blair didn't survive his words. the defender, who murdered him was 16, was sentenced to 100 years in illinois. in an illinois prison on july 20, 2009. in illinois, because of the truth in sentencing, this is an ineffective sending an ineffective licensing. but for the majority of my career i have worked the streets and witnesses constants violence regularly. so my question, my question is how can victims advocates be so divorced from reality from what i see on the streets of chicago regularly? thank you.
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>> okay. we will ask the panel. how can the people who are advocating these changes be so divorced from reality and who wants to start? >> in my experience, a lot of people on the defense side that i take have trouble with the victims and their feelings. now, when pamela was killed, people i knew in the defense, not as good friends but just as business friends, shunned the. they couldn't go near me. were as prosecutors, might have even had some acrimony and reach out to me. and i think there may be sort of a mindset on the part of that group of people where they dehumanize their victims and dehumanize the families in order to do their jobs. and i think you are feeling the effects of that, which is unfortunate. >> and it is interesting, officer holt, we never met
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before this obvious it. we would be natural enemies. 20 years as prosecutor and almost 30 years as defense attorney, but we focus on his experience and the fact that the prosecutors did reach out to them. i do think that is a big part of it. and that is, that they have almost convinced themselves by the way they write about the crimes, about these pictures, that in fact, it's not an important public safety issue. but it is also not an important victims issue. there are two reasons for the senses. one is to ensure the safety of the public. from my perspective, and i have sat in a parole hearings with families and pardons hearings and all the like, the revitalization that happens again and again as it is brought up is very, very difficult. and therefore, one of the reasons for instant someone like me would advocate against or for life without parole is not
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having those times where there is some right to reject the mice, to bring this up again and to have the family lived through it. i have seen it plenty of times. i truly believe that they, i don't mean ill on any of those on the other side of this debate, but i don't think they have the whole dynamic of what is happening. somebody has made an adult decision to commit an adult crime. and it has left very, very adult consequences. and that person lives within, in the prison. you live with that everyday of your life. and we see that. that's the reason not to have it, parole hearings, and some expectation that you are going to have to go through that again. >> cully? >> i think that i would have a
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tremendous amount of respect, officer holt, if the argument from the other side was we don't want to see life without parole sentences for juvenile killers because as a compassionate society we think other senses are appropriate. and leave it at that. at least that would be honest. it would send a what warning order to all of the victims that are here and millions of others in the united states, look, this is an issue of compassion. we are a compassionate country. and we don't like it. now, i would respectfully disagree. but instead, this campaign has been less than forthright honest and direct. and it ignores i think paul put it well, the reader divinization that will take place over and over and over in courtrooms and
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parole board hearings around the country. oftentimes without the victims there or family representatives there because many states don't require a prosecutor to give notice to the victims, nor do they have time to give the officer holt notice to show up. and so oddly enough i think one of the primary responsibilities of the most prosecutors it to be a human rights attorney, to thank for the rights of everybody, especially the victims. you all know that when you try a case, and general meese and i talked about this, a person who represents himself before the court, you are trying to cases that was. you are protecting the rights of the who doesn't understand the system and you are representing the people, the state, as ably as you can. and so i don't have the foggiest clue either, but i would at least appreciate a more honest
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approach. >> any questions from the audience? i see a hand. yes, over here. >> from safe foundation. i would like to present a little different perspective. firstly, this is not a debate it seems you've got at least three speakers out of four, and i haven't heard mr. meese speak and i am sorry about that. but it seems like it is one-sided. i would like to not argue the legal aspects. in fact, not a lawyer, but i do think and your statistics, mr. simpson, in the u.s. leads the war in crime. and since i come from outside this country, lived in this country since 1970, i have found that firstly, the legal system, policing as well as prosecution
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is pretty brutal in this country. and in my opinion, that is one which creates more criminals in this country. so that maybe one aspect we should give some thought to. the second is somehow the upbringing of people are prudery router i have had friends sometimes to become one, we want to talk and have a meeting. and if things don't work out, i will shoot you. and i never went with a gun to defend myself, that thank god it was a joke, not real. but there are people in this country, not all again, it should be a small minority i am hoping to are pretty brutal. and you know, when we had those torture pictures, when the congressman or senator said in a meeting, i didn't believe these are americans doing it. there are americans who aren't that covers. some of you have gone through those sufferings, you know there
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are people like that, particularly this gentleman, dan, who described the process which is pretty brutal. and i don't know how there are people like that, unfortunately. i hope we change our way of upbringing. those are the two issues. comments? >> i agree to do the sense that you are saying if we could just prevent what's going on with people, create a more compassionate society we would be better off. and i wish a lot of contention that it is being let killers on parole, that money would be taken and put into programs when they are young to stop them from committing these crimes later on. >> and i think i could speak for all of us out here, including general meese, that in a perfect world our place would never engage in behavior that we often would be proud of and that we should have a perfect criminal justice system.
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and that is why i open my comments by saying the real test of a just and civilized society is how well we treat the defendant and the victims in our criminal justice system. but one of the reasons, sir, that i pointed out for comparative analysis between crimes committed by people in the united states and other countries is to rebut the myth that we are all the same. or that we are the only country -- we all like all other countries in terms of our crimes. and so i went to the repository of people, the un, and look at their statistics and the world health organization statistics, and one given here. although if you take any look at over a ten-year period you will see that the u.s., juveniles, in the u.s. commits crime that dorp those in other countries that are reported. now, i would agree with you completely that there are a lot of crimes that go unreported,
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especially in many countries around the world. but we just can't put our hands around that in terms of analysis. >> paul, do you have any comments? >> let me just mention by the way this is not billed as a debate. this is built really as a presentation of the reputation of great deal of information which has been put out by groups on the other side. this is to farrow the presentation of the study which has been going on for the last year and a half. now we will take questions appear in the front row. >> high, i am pennies are with cns news. i wanted to ask if the organizations that are fighting against this for juveniles being sentenced to life without parole, are they listed in your publication, or who are these folks? and how will this affect the supreme court when it comes back in session?
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>> if i could take out the supreme court was going to rule i would be a rich man. [laughter] >> yes, there are two cases coming out in florida, graham and sullivan are the two defendants named. they are procedurally indifferent posture, and so we are probably are going back to back the same day but the rule will probably not be joined. yes, we list all of the organizations in our report and in our footnotes. and look, this report will go out to all prosecutors in the country, many key state legislators, many judges and justices around the country, key victims rights groups, state thank takes. and it is available right now as we speak on the heritage website, web dot and you will see a probably displayed there and you can download the whole paper or each
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chapter. into our hope that we have, an honest and straight full debate going for. i thank all his correct and the court will not be tempted to breach the wall between death penalty jurisprudence and non-death penalty, at least that is my hope. >> one way i can do that the report is helpful, for someone like myself, i had to try to get, i really had to depend on many of the reports coming from the other side because there was no good repository with that information. so this is helpful in that it gives the counter statement of what the real facts are. and a very realistic way. i know i am involved in one of the particular cases, and i know what it was before in some of those other reports. it can be helpful. and may be cited to various
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courts throughout the country because that's the we need to do to get the information out. >> question over here. >> hi. i am deborah weiss, a former juvenile prosecutor and i just want to say it is really a slippery slope because i have never done death penalty kind of cases or murder cases, but even for the minor minor offenses, just simple assault or battery or anything like that, i can't say how may times the other side, legally, the entire defense assisted in the juvenile. they are young and i am like so what. so they can't form intent? or even if they do for content it doesn't count because they are below a certain age. i never understood it but i'd did want to say i think it is a slippery slope or the other thing i want to comment on the response to someone said here about our country maybe has more crime because our criminal system and our police officers are so violent. i don't know what countries a person comes from who said that, but i would argue with anything
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it is the opposite. it is because we have freedom that we have so much hi. when you go to the countries that have a lot less crime, it's because they are afraid of doing anything or they're going to wind up with the police throwing them in jail. and my final comment, just about what you said with the compassion, you know, that you wish they would say we are a compassionate society, i wish they wouldn't do that. is there is an agent saying that says being kind to the parole is like being cruel to the kind. i am sorry i have comments instead of a question. i usually don't do that. thanks. >> thank you. any other questions that anyone else has? yes, over here. >> robert alt from heritage. i just wanted to see, i don't know him if the panels are familiar with this, but i know one of the major argument someone made in roper, and i'd assume being to the current
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debate goes to questions, jumping off your question, as to whether or not juveniles are capable of forming intent. is there a different and cerebral development? and sent cully started by saying our great distortion in the offenders by some of the others. if you would be able to talk about whether there actually is any credibility to those sorts of arguments, about cerebral development. >> one of the things that we chose not to delve into just because it was outside of our lane, and i'm surely not not a psychiatrist or psychologist, and i wanted to keep the paper to about 100 pages. is this notion that like you pointed out in roper, the juvenile's brains are still underdeveloped that they really can't be held accountable for their actions. i will say that in the roper case, there were two filed on
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behalf of the government. there were 15 on behalf of the accused. that will be quite different this time around. as you are going see, all prosecutors in the country joined together. state legislators, international law scholars and a lot of other people, including people who work in psychology and psychiatry. saying that this issue of whether brains are sufficiently developed is sort of a -- it doesn't hold a lot of water. there is a renowned phd psychologist, judy, who is a professor at u. penn who argued in the law journal a couple of years ago criticizing the roper decision. and the first line i think says it all. he says people commit crimes. brains don't. and so are their people, individuals out there who are
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mentally incompetent or don't have sufficient ability to understand the proceedings before them or assist in their defense? absolutely, and they should not be tried in court at all. they should be held mentally incompetent and incapable of subjecting them to the criminal process. but we're not talking about them. we're talking about people who think through their crimes, like roper, plan them out and go forward. it also strikes me as a little on, and i think if you think about it, just generally, folks, how can we hear on the one side of the ledger, completely outside of the criminal law context, that young people, 12, 13, 14, can make life most important choices, birth, death, aborting the fetus, perfectly capable of doing that but yet over here in the criminal law context their brains are not sufficiently developed to be
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held accountable for murdering somebody. there is a disconnect, and i think reasonable people, rational people realize that there comes a point in time into development of the team where they are certainly capable of being held accountable for things that they plan and did. >> i'm afraid we've come to the end of our time here. i appreciate very much of the questions from the audience, and also the good work by our panel. please join me in thanking our panel for the presentation today. [applause] las. .
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[hushed conversations] >> coming up next here on c-span 2 we'll be live with a discussion of the massachusetts health care plan that might work nationally. an economist has analyzed the plan. and on live at 1:15 on c-span, president barack obama will
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thank veterans and talk about plans for the wars in iraq and afghanistan. the president will be in phoenix, arizona to address the veterans convention. that's live on c-span. while we wait for the live discussion on health care, some is of our last week's home defense department briefing. >> i want to share a few thoughts about where we are in afghanistan. one week from now, the people of
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afghanistan are going to meet with councils. the afghanistan international military forces is to support an election administered and organizationed by the government of afghanistan. the goal is to provide a security environment as conducive as possible to holding a fair, credible election, free from violence and womennation. due to some of the military operation that have taken place, it looks like more afghans will be able to vote than had been the case before the deployment of u.s. forces. obviously, that's an encouraging development. in terms of the country my view and i believe the view of most of our military commanders is that we are looking at a mixed picture. in some parts of afghanistan the
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taliban has clearly established a presence. the operation is under way, and we're designed to roll back the taliban. >> and now back live on the report of the health care coverage in massachusetts. >> also listen to today's discussion about tuning into congressional briefing series on itunes. we do research across a variety of areas. in 2006, massachusetts passed an initial health care. the challenge is a problem because of how to pay for it. today an economist at rand and the co-author of this study will discuss the projections of the cost about how it could be paid
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for. our current research is on affordability of private health insurance, social disparity, and modeling the effect on health care changes on cost, coverage, and other outcomes. doctor also played a key role in the evidence-based approach to helping policymakers and the public understand and evaluate health policies. today's briefing is the first of several rand briefings on health care cost. the next one is next monday at the same time. it will address health care, growth, and relationship to the economic performance of u.s. industries. i hope to see you all there again next week. in addition, rand is participanted in a event related to what we're calling a critical conversation in nashville, tennessee on august t @, foe you
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cans on the third rail of health reform cost. i'd like to turn this over to doctor now. >> thank you, shier re. so today i'm going to be talking about options for health care cost containment in the state of massachusetts. i should say that all of the options have been modeled specifically to the needs of massachusetts. however, we think this exercise is really important from an national perspective, because most of the policy options that we've considered are being currently discussed in the national health care reform debate. and in addition to the fact that policy options for cost containment are being discussed in the national health care reform debate, there's also massachusetts has been one of the first states to ask health care reform. to see major components of the
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health care reform in massachusetts included a mandate requiring all individuals to maintain or pay a fine. a separate mandate for employees also requiring to offer health insurance to residents or to their workers or pay a fine. also state regulated options became available to make it easier for people to purchase health care if they didn't have access to a policy. the uninsured rate in massachusetts fell to 2.6%. this is a big achievement. however, it's worth noting that going into reform, massachusetts has relatively favorite demography for reform. it was 8% compared to 15% nationally. the median income is higher than united states.
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and the poverty rate is lower than the national average. so far the reform has been successful at achieving close to universal coverage in massachusetts. but there's a question about whether or not the form is going to be sustainable. and a key issue relates to the sustainability is the cost of health care in the state of massachusetts. so here we have projected trends in health care spending in massachusetts starting in 2010 and moving to 2020. in 2010 we project the health spending will be $43 billion and will reach $82 billion by 2020. one question is all sectors of the economy are growing over time, or at least that's the general pattern. so there's a question of how does it compare to other sections. it turns out we were able to constrain the health care cost
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to match the anticipated growth of gdp. we see it raising at a lower raise only to $71 billion. this is a substantial different, there's 7.7% cumulatively over the 11 years. one of the reasons we would think about benchmarking it if health care cost were to grow at the rate of growth of gdp, we wouldn't see health care consuming a larger and larger share. nationally health care consumes about 16% of total gdp, i'm sure you've heard that number a lot. do we want to see it larger? probably not. this is trying to make growth match gdp growth. in order to address this we were asked by massachusetts to evaluate the effects of various potential cost containment options. our project involves three
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steps. first we had to select the options. then for each of the options that we selected we had to conduct and review to understand the background, the evidence, and the theory supporting the effects of those policy options. and then finally for options that showed promise and for which there was sufficient evidence and data, we then did a modeling estimate of what the effect of those policy on health care spending in the state. so the first step was selecting the options for analysis. and in order to do this we interviewed state holders in the state and we came up with a list of 75 different cost containment options. 75 was too much for us to do in a single study. so we narrowed it. the way we did that, we grouped the reforms into five categories, payment reform, redesign health care, reduce waste, medical behavior, and medical malpractice.
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we grouped those, and with the client, we selected options a total of 21 options that reflected all five of those categoried to do more in depth analysis. and the options were selected to select the one that had the most momentum. one of the challenges we encountered in conducting this analysis that really to have an option that you think is going to be a very promising option, you really want to have two criteria. we like to have strong theory. but in addition to theory and logic, we'd like to implementation and experience or evident to suggest that it has worked in practice. and so broadly speaking, the kinds of reforms that we considered grouped into two different categories. the first is regulatory reforms. and for regulatory reforms we have a lot of theory and logic
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about why they might work. we also have a strong history about implementing them in the u.s. in the 1970s and '80s. we can draw on that experience to determine how likely these options are to work currently. the other set is market based reforms. we have a lot of theory and logic, but we have less experience with these kinds of reforms. a challenge with the regulatory reforms that were implemented in the test, it didn't necessarily show in implementation a very strong effect on health care spending. we want to think about considering these reforms again we have to think about reasons why they might work better this time. and then for the market-based reforms, there's a lot of logic to support the idea that they might work but we don't have as much implementation. this has been a challenge, and it's not really a fair fight.
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one we have experience to draw on and we can sort of draw conclusions based on that experience and the other is relying more on logic. okay with that i want to go through the different reforms that we did select to consider. and out of the 21 options that we did the in depth review, we ended up with 12 for which we created model estimates. so the first four we considered grouped into the general category of reforming payment system. so i've listed them here. the first two reforms are more market-based orientated reforms. and the second two are more regulatory. and the very first is bundle payment. and i'm going to through what bundle payment is and give an example later on in the talk. the second two policies relate to pricing for academic medical centers in the state of massachusetts. so this is actually, these two policies are very specific to the state of massachusetts.
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massachusetts has a lot of academic medical centers and they tend higher prices than community hospitals. these policies would be trying to reduce spending at academic medical centers that are not necessarily relevant for the u.s. overall. the fourth one is hospital all payer rate setting. that's a regulatory, and one of the reforms that was adopted in the '70s and '80s, and has been abandoned by all states except maryland. the second group of reformed that we considered fell into the category of redesigning the system. the first three are all about expanding primary care and increasing the efficiency of primary care. and the last is disease management which is obviously about better managing chronic illness. the third group of options that we considered had to do with reducing waste in the health care system. we hear a lot about reducing waste as a potential policy for
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-- for health care savings. so the challenge here was articulating which policies used to reduce waste. we came up with three that might be promising, eliminating payment for some events. and finally accelerating the option of health information technology. and then finally we evaluated one reform that was in the area of encouraging consumers to maintain health. and that reform is called value-based insurance design. i think that bared a little more explanation. value-based is setting propayments for medical services so they reflect the value that a patient receives for that kind of care. so they are frequently discussed in the context of pharmaceuticals, and so the idea would be for the someone with a serious illness who has a need, they would get a lower copayment than someone using for a less serious condition or something.
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and then before the modeling, i would say there were originally five categories that we considered. when we narrowed it down to select options for modeling, they fell into four categories. the categories that was left off was medical malpractice. we developed health care spending projections for the state of massachusetts from 2010 to 2020. and these projections adjusted for population change. and they also allowed for health care cost inflation. and we projected that over this time period massachusetts would spent $670 billion on health care. an then we model what would be the likely effect of implementing policies on the health care spending. and for each model -- when we model these policy options we created an upper and lower bound
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estimate. upper bound lower bound takes a more pessimistic view. i want to talk about medicare before i move on to the results. so medicare spending was included in the $670 billion of total health spending projected cumulatively of 2010 and 2020. however, it was kind of challenging to determine how we incorporated medicare into our estimates. the reason that our charge was to think about policies that could be speed limited by stakeholders within massachusetts. and medicare is of course outside of the massachusetts in general. and so for many options we assumed that there would be no medicare policy changes. and if that was the case it would not -- medicare would be unaffected. however, there were a few exceptions. the first exception was that we
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thought the waiver could be obtained and a particular type of policy. this really applies to hospital rate regulation. the evidence from past experience has just that medicare has been willing to participant -- participate in those options. we had medicare within the rate regulations. we also allowed medicare to be included either medicare enrollees or providers to make sure of the system changed. so an example of this is health information technology. we think the providers adopted health information technology, they would use it for all regardless of who was paying for that care, and so that case medicare was included in our estimates. okay. so now i'm going to move to the results. and first just to orient you to how i'm presenting this, the red star here on the graph representing the 7.7% that we'd
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like to see deline between 2010 and 2020 in order to achieve a production that would match the rate of growth in gdp. the difference was 7.7% this is the target we're trying to achieve. the option that turned out to be the most promising for reducing spending at least in upper bound estimate was a policy balled bundle payment. as a payment we project would lead to 5.7 reduction in accumulative spending. so before i was -- before i go with the rest of the policy options i'm going to go through what we did for bundle payment in a little detail. just to tell you what it is, and how we conducted these only
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analysis. with these service, providers are reimbursed to the service they provide. that could lead to the overuse of care. the total cost of caring for a condition and providing a particular procedure would be calculated and that bundle payment would be given as opposed to fee for service payment. the idea would be that all cares of the patients condition would come out of the bundle. the bundle amount is usually reduction for the condition or procedure. it would be applied across multiple providers and care settings. and well this is one of the market-based reforms for which there is not tons of evidence. the limited evidence suggests that it would save money. okay. so we considered bundle payment for ten different conditions and four procedures.
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they are listed here. the conditions are chronic conditions such as diabetes and high blood pressure, colts procedures like hip replacement. there's a payment reform system called the promethus system. we were able to draw from that data in order to figure out how much it would save the state of massachusetts. so walk through the example of how it works, for a typical patient with diabetes, the average spending for that parable is about $6,000 per year. but promethus has gone back and looked at evident-based guidelines. and they determined that 39% of payment for care is for evidence-based guideline recommended care.
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and the other 61% is for care that was potentially avoidable. and by potentially avoidable, i mean it could have been a test that was ordered twice so you got the same test results back for the same situation. or it would be something that became a -- became necessary but could have been avoided. an example of that would be an emergency visit for hypoglioseem ya. >> and in this situation we've said that the reduction on potentially avoidment payment would be 50% sop this causes the payment for diabetes to fall from an average of $6,000 to $4200 per patient per year. now the reason that this is attractive is that it gives providers a little bit of a cushion in case of the some of the care was actually in
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evidentable. but it also gives an incentive to participant. because if you're a provider and you think you can get your care levels to provide only recommendations care, you stand to make money off this policy. we multiplied the difference out between the $6,000 and $4200 and we came up with an estimate of savings. but there's a question about how this would work in practice. i mentioned before that there is some evidence that bundle payment has worked. but the evidence comes mainly from hospital-based conditions and it's mostly for coronary-artery bypass conference. the lower bound estimate included only hospital-based conditions. and you can see from the side that there was a specially a 0 effect, so this was marginal reduction when you include only the hospital-based conditions. so chronic illness is really the
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biggest cost saver, and we don't have enough evidence at this point. who owns the bundle and allocates the payment? in an integrated delivery system, it might work well. but in a more traditional setting where they don't interact were communicate with the hospital or the specialist, it might be hard to figure out how that bundle is going to be allocated. there's t they are also difficult to develop in price. they used this from prometheua, and it took 10 years to develop prices. and then there are unknown effects on value of care. one concern is by capping it the amount, providers would pull back not only on the unnecessary care but potentially care that
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could have been necessary. okay. so this just kind of goes back to the slide and shows the original estimate for bundle payment. turns out to the four options that were the most promises in the upper bound at least were options that were related to former payment systems. one of the options that show the most promotion are captions aimed at changing the health care. we also had three options in the middle in terms of the likely savings potential, health information technology was one, and two others are options that are aimed at improving the efficiency and expanding primary care. and then there were three options grouped at the bottom. these options are creating medical homes with, and also encouraging disease management. if you can see the slide, for these options, they cross the line at 0, which means that in
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some estimates they can increase as opposed to decrease. all of these three options that they are about better managing illness for patient. and so in order to do this we have to invest in better management for a wide group of patient. and then the savings come down the road. hopefully some people end up using less hospital and emergency care because they managed it better in the first case when something started to develop. so the reason these might provide uncertain savings is because the spending that you have to give in order to better manage care is a certainly and a savings that come down the road are very uncertain. okay. to summarize. we have limited experience with most policy options. the policy that seem to be the most promising at least in the upper bound are all used on reforming payment system. and the policy that were aimed at better managing chronic
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illness, they require investment that may or may not generate savings. weaver looking specificically at health care spending. we're not thinking about the value that's added in terms of quality of life that would come about. the we don't mean to suggest they are not good ideas, but from a spending prospective, they are not necessarily going to save money. the final conclusion that no single policy a magic bullet. bundle payment was the most promising option in the upper bound would leave to 5.7% reduction in the 11 year period. the target is 7.7% reduction in spending. so we're not getting all the way to the target with any one of these policy implemented alone. and obvious next step would be to think about combining options. it turns out it's more challenging that you might imagine. we don't think in terms of
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projecting the likely effect. we don't think these effects are likely to be additive. for most of the policy options they are addressing the same sources. many of the policy options that we considered are about reducing spending that occurs within hospitals for conditions that might have been avoided. and so you can obviously only save that money once regardless of the specific policy that you'd use. we can't necessary add these together. we think it would be possible to come up with an estimate of how combined package of different reforms would effect health care spending but we haven't done that at this point, and it would be another project. so in terms of the next step we delivered to the client earlier this month. the findings were released. about three weeks before we delivered our reports, they recommended global payment as a strategy to reduce health care. global payment is extreme form
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of bundle payment where all care for a particular patient would be bundled as a specific price and the provider would receive one payment per patient per year. it was provided by the payment reform commission is that bundle payment could be the first step on the road to global payment. i should mention that bundle payment at this point is not a lot of implementation. we are currently evaluating in four different sights. hopefully with that evidence we will have something to say about the bundled payments. okay. so that concludes the reported portion of this believing. -- briefing. at this point i'd be happy to take questions from the audience. yes? [hushed conversation] >> how reliable would it be if
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you were to have a disease and you were to get a price on how much to pay for that disease, what would happen if other diseases came about as as -- because of the former disease you have. how would bundling be able to excel sate, and how would you compensate with the cause of different health care :
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>> beyond that, we also think of a bundled payment or global payment as it usually been coupled with different performance incentives to make sure the quality of care doesn't suffer or that is not necessarily the case with capitation. >> emphasis on the bundled payments, and for chronic care patients may be reducing their use of the er. >> right. >> so most of the bundling i have seen, programs being talked about are in post acute-care, bundled payments maybe to a
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hospital, is anyone evaluating maybe like three acute-care, bundling type program that keep them out of hospital in the first place? >> i'm not aware of whether not that is underway. peter, do you know? this is my co-author. he may be able to answer that. [inaudible] >> in the back. >> could you describe how the bundled payments is evaluated with different. [inaudible] >> so the bundles are based on those 10 conditions that i presented earlier so they were payments, they were intended to be payment for chronic conditions that would be an annualized payment per patient per year. for each payment with that
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condition. and then there were also four different bundles that related to sort of acute episodes of care like a geriatric surgery. it would cover all of the care that went along with a geriatric surgery, whether it occurred before, or after that was related to that episode. [inaudible] >> with bundled payment we would assume it would take three to five years to get fully operationalize and then after that we would see the savings accruing overtime for the period between 2010, 2020. [inaudible]
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>> no, we only look at the original case, the state regulatory board. yes, was there another question over here? >> is increasing prices charged such as pharmaceutical questions or manufacturers of medical technology, increase their pricing play in projected costs of spending in massachusetts? and our price controls off the table? >> we didn't evaluate either of those off options. i can't speak to that. >> why didn't you? >> we had the school to evaluate about, we started with about 75 different options and we narrowed down to 21 based on what stakeholders and what our client our most important to consider. that's how we narrowed it to 21. the ones we left off the list weren't promising, they were just options we didn't have the scope and resources to evaluate.
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>> the bundled payments that they have come up with, taken into account geographic area asian? >> that is a good question. i will ask peter. is bent and baltimore with the prometheus analysis. >> where they analyze what the prices in a particular market, but also potentially avoid the use. so they are tailored for the program. [inaudible]
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>> they are in now. [inaudible] who does the bundled payments go to? is that the hospitals or providers? how does that work? >> that's a good question, so if it were -- i think the model would be typically two integrated so that the primary care provider for the patient was holding a bundle but how that would work in practice is difficult to say. we could see it working well in integrated delivery system but mormore challenging temperamentf there wasn't a link across different providers. [inaudible] >> okay. so accountable care organizations was actually not one of the things we consider. it turns out that the three
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options that grouped sort of in the middle, two of those three were delivery system reforms. so focused on approving the efficiency of primary care physician so substituting lower cost primary care providers like nurse practitioners and physician assistant for indecent. mds. yes? [inaudible] >> so as we modeled it for that option we really only considered it fairly narrowly to focus on substituting for primary care dividers to see more nurse practitioners and physician assistants as opposed people with mds. we discussed that could be implement more broadly to encourage the greater use of primary care physicians over specialist and there will be other examples of how that might work as well. additional questions? follow-up?
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[inaudible] >> and now safety net providers are able to adopt if it isn't? >> so i'm not sure that the analysis that we did spoke to either of those specific questions that you raise. the way we talk about health i.t. is having savings across a number of different dimensions, including sort of reduced paperwork, reduced or better drug prescribing so there is less redundancy and unnecessary drug prescriptions. i'm trying to think about the other areas. nursing time, so that would be a savings to nursing time from having a health information technology of a low. we had several categories of savings that we consider that went into the health information technology kind of pricing. yes. >> so notwithstanding the estimates that you got from the changes to the health care
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delivery system, given that bundled payments scenes, upper bound at least, estimates seem to work in the case of integrated delivery system, at that point in argue for the medical home concept or some other concept that does integrate the delivery system, vertically, horizontally, however you want? >> we did discuss that a little bit. in order to implement the reforms you might need a structure like a medical home structure underlying. in the payment reform report for the state of massachusetts where they talk about implement global payment they discuss it in the context of accountable care organizations which will be similar to linking dividers. >> ended with the global payment without having these kind of other delivery systems? >> i think the idea would be to implement them in tandem, yeah. yes. >> consumers slash patients, what are some of the costs of
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downside of the bundled payments? >> i think the biggest downside would be if quality of care could be negatively affected in some way by capping the bundle at a particular amount. so the way that would hopefully be dealt with would be by implementing performances and synods alongside bundled payments to ensure the care was being delivered appropriately but it is a little bit unknown at this point. it is something we need to study further. >> bundled payments are a new concept. they started 20, 30 years ago i think when managed-care was first introduced in california. can you think of, for instance, can you give a concrete example of a bad outcome for a patient because of bundled payments? >> i can't necessarily get a concrete example, no. other questions? yes. >> he thought about how some of these estimates may change at the national level?
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like for instance, does massachusetts choose nurse practitioners for a lot of care already? >> that's a good question. we have actually started doing some estimates at the national level and are hoping to develop a white papers in. i think that sort of the biggest difference is the national level we can certainly envision medicare playing along. so that would mean the savings potential for many of the different reforms is bigger because medicare consumes such a big portion of total spending. >> in your modeling, how did you assign a role for medicaid? because at the state level, that's the big consumer of state budgets. >> right. we use data from the medical expenditure panel survey and we used the dissolution of the medicaid spending that was in an altered that spending basically in the same way we altered spending for other payers.
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okay. are there other questions? all right. thank you very much, everyone, for your time and i would be happy to take questions afterwards if you would just like to contact me personally. thanks again. [applause] [inaudible conversations] >> you have been watching live coverage of a discussion on the health care system in massachusetts. now we are going to show youtube videos shot by americans attending health care town hall meetings.
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the first takes place in the summit missouri at a town hall hosted by democratic congressman emanuel cleaver. the second takes place at a town hall hosted by democratic representative vicki tsongas of massachusetts. >> do you know what insurance plan has the highest administrative costs in the country? daycare. yes, it does. that is a proven fact from the government budget office. they have the highest administrative costs of any plan. not only that they have run out of money. >> we are listening to different sources because i have a whole lot different number strick i cadidn't bring my campus with a. >> nobody listened. we jump up and down and we get excited and our voices raised and we raise our hands and we write letters. no one will listen. so when we start getting excited
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in a matter of speaking, according to what they are saying, oh, they are radicals. well, you didn't listen to us by letters, by phone calls which doesn't take you to listen to is the first time. >> well, i would like to say health care for everyone. i want to see affordable health care for everyone. there is a population that is not out here. everybody out here are probably well-to-do, have insurance. there is a population that is not here that has a voice that need to be heard. >> i am in the health care field. and i came out to kind of hear what i thought i was going to hear, e-mail your cleaver speed about the deal. but i did not get that. i am kind of disappointed in that because i wanted him to really address the issues and answer some of the people's questions on a national level,
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not on a sit down with people can't understand or realize what he is saying. >> i feel it's a very unfair issue. one, as i come out i am against abortion and in this care as a nurse i would have to perform abortions against my own right. and i feel that that is very, very unfair. and it is a system that is supposed to be giving to people, it is about the government taking control of our lives and telling us when we can get treatment, what kind of treatment we can get, and what is going on in our lives. >> i am absolutely against with your try to do in congress right now, as far as medical health care and socialized medicine. it is a huge takeover. that's not good for anybody. >> and if you want to call it socialism, i think it's better than what we've got now. >> my turn. mitered. i was born in cuba. i left a socialist country. i sneak in 20 pounds of medicine every three months. they have socialized medicine.
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go to the real and see the pictures of socialized medicine, human feces on the floor. if it is so great in cuba why did castro have to bring a doctor in from spain? >> i lived in spain which is a socialist country. the hope that ran the health care system worked perfectly. sorry. i'm not going to show you what i know. i lived in spain and people were taken care of from birth to death under a fair system. it doesn't cost anybody anything. >> where does the money come from? >> they have come to their coffeeshop in sitting and talking about national policy. that is a pretty powerful thing. we may not agree or disagree with everyone that is here, but the congressman is working his way through one on one talking to as many people as he can. he scheduled this in january. this is our august coffee with cleaver. we do this with every time.
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this is by far our largest crowd, which is great. >> the government has no business running my, taking care of what i can take care of on my own. >> we have become -- when you look in other countries, they're people just die, how about that? and they don't have health care. so we need proper health care for everybody in the united states. the only way we can start. nobody says it's perfect but we got to start someplace and it's a good place to start. >> [inaudible conversations] >> did you get paid by obama?
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>> know. >> what is your job? >> i don't have a job. >> i want to know what your job was? >> i work right over there in the recycling court nader. so yes, i work for the government. >> why are you here? >> i am here because i want to get it done right. and i think they are rushing to get it done wrong. >> why are you here? >> i oppose socialism. i am not american. >> i am here and nobody sent me to come here. i came here on my own. i don't belong to any group that is trying to upset this whole thing. i am here because we need term limits on our congressman, our senators, all of them. they are not doing this. they are more interested in power, whether it's the republicans or the democrats. we need to change that. people need to wake up and do something about it.
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>> and i wan have friends in caa and they are extremely disappointed. don't shove it down my throat. >> she says we're not going to have a single-payer health plan. the president says we are going to have a single-payer health plan. on the one income on the other hand he says we are not going to have a single-payer health plan. so they're contradicting themselves and i want to find out what her opinion is. >> i believe it will hurt a lot of people. >> basically to disagree. >> it's my children's future. enough taxes already. >> did anyone send you here? >> know. >> i came on my own.
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i don't want the government having any access to my back account, which is part of the bill. >> i think they're going to fast. i think they are putting in things that they don't even know about. and i can't support that and they went so fast with a stimulus, they need to slow down now. >> i think it's time for a change. i think that this whole process around the country is being hijacked by extremists. i would like to see broader access to health care for americans, and health insurance is getting ridiculous. my family spends $14000 a year on health care. it is obscene. it is enough. >> i am not part of any group. and i am here because i still live by that dream that our representatives are really supposed to support us and not just go along with whatever is being pushed through. i question why they have to push this through so fast.
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84% of americans have good health care plan that they like, and they're going to take that away from us despite what the president says. i had a mother who is almost 80, two in-laws were 82, and he answered to their physical maladies is a pain pill. and they are taking money away from medicare and medicaid, to areas that i work in. and i am very, very concerned and i hope they vote against this. >> town hall meetings are taking place across the country during the august recess. you can share video from your town hall meetings on health care by going to >> as the health care conversation continues, c-span's health care hub is a key resource. go on line and follow the latest tweets, video ads and links. also keep up-to-date with health
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care events like town hall meetings, house and senate debates, even upload your opinion about health care with a citizen video. the c-span health care hub, at c-span .org/health care. >> lobbying influence and money. ellen miller. >> how is c-span funded? >> the u.s. government. >> i don't know. i think some of it is government raised. >> it's not public. >> probably donations.
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>> i want to say from me, my tax dollars to. >> how is c-span funded? america's cable companies created the c-span as a public service. a private business initiative. no government mandate, no government money. >> now a senate hearing on hurricanes. looking at research efforts, preparedness and economic impacts. jay rockefeller of west virginia chairs the commerce and science committee. this runs about two hours. >> [inaudible conversations] >> good morning. welcome to the commerce committee, and on this panel we are joined by a distinguished group of experts. the assistant administrator for
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oceanic and atmospheric research, doctor richard spinrad leads the office at the national oceanic and atmospheric administration. and dr. spinrad will discuss those efforts to improve research for predicting modeling and forecasting hurricanes, and the agency's work with coastal states to assessable rebuild the two hurricanes and to try to create something that we all desire, which is a disaster resistant community. and doctor kelvin droegemeier is the associate vice president for research and regents professor of meteorology at the university of oklahoma.
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dr. droegemeier is testified to have on the half of the national science board hurricane science board hurricane science and engineering, and he will discuss the task force findings in their report, hurricane warning, the critical need for a national hurricane research initiative. and doctor gordon wells, a research associate in the center for space research at the university of texas at austin. dr. wells has worked on gps signals, and the best hurricane and storm surge models available to support coastal evacuation. in his testimony will address the current state of science, the data needs of stakeholders, as well as future needs to
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improve research for predicting, modeling and forecasting hurricanes. and ms. leslie chapman henders henderson, is the president and ceo of the federal alliance for safe homes, a national nonprofit dedicated to strengthening homes and safeguarding families from disaster. her testimony was dressed how model building codes can improve the resiliency of structures and reduce the economic cost of post-storm recovery efforts, and a lot of her experience comes from the experience that florida suffered after the mega- hurricane, hurricane andrew in 1992. and mr. frank nutter is the president of the reinsurance association of america. he currently serves on the board of the international.
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meteorological society, and board of the university senate for atmospheric research. he will address the economic impacts of hurricane planning, damage, and recovery on vulnerable communities. and so we thank you all, and dr. droegemeier, i want to especially thank you for it you let your vacation early to come back so you could testify today. so thank you very much. i could say all of the obvious things about the disruptive force of hurricanes. the fact that we have this extraordinarily vulnerable coastline that most of the population of america is along
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the coast, certainly that is the case with regard to my state of florida. and we can see that this is an enormous cost, not only to insurance companies, the people in two states, but also to the united states government, and therefore the people of this country. it's also deadly. 2000 deaths in the united states since 2003 account for approximately 66% of the insured losses due to, and account for 66% of the insured losses due to natural hazards.
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hurricanes and other tropical cyclones. and you just think about it. it was the hurricane of 1928 that killed, drug, 2000 people around lake okeechobee. and what a turning point in our history that was. and here we are experiencing a similar kind of thing with regard to the number of deaths since 2003. images like that, that is hurricane charley. that was a category three. it covered up virtually the entire state of florida. and by the way, that was the first of four in 2004, within a six week period, four hurricanes hit florida which virtually hit every part of the state within that six weeks period. of course, that's a typical kind of distraction. i'm going to insert the rest of
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introductory comments, and i would call on senator vitter, our ranking member of our subcommittee. >> thank you very much, mr. chairman. i want to welcome and thank all of our witnesses. i am very much looking forward to the testimony. i am here for a pretty obvious reason also just like you are. unnatural interest in these phenomenons represents louisiana. of course, the best known example of a hurricane to hit louisiana recently is petrina which caused enormous devastation beginning with the death of over 1800 people. but sort of like florida, louisiana has expressed multiple hurricanes in the last few years alone. right after katrina, we had hurricane rita which was very, very serious. that particularly hit southwest louisiana and southeast texas. and then hurricanes goosed off and eich since then.
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i will go through all of the statistics all of the devastation, death and the dollar lost. but clearly, particularly in places like louisiana, florida, the gulf coast, but also our other coast are vulnerable as well. i think there is a clear need for advanced and increased research in many areas, areas like understanding and predicting, predicting hurricane intensification and size and reducing the uncertainty associated with where and when hurricanes make landfall. understanding air sea interactions, predicting storm surge, rainfall and inland flooding. and improved observations. also in the broad category of impacts. i think we need to understand even better the interaction of hurricanes with engineered structures. the economic and social impact of hurricanes and mitigation members.
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measures. interaction with hurricanes with natural ecosystems. third category is preparedness and response measures here and certainly we have a lot of additional work to do there, assessing and improving the resilience of the built environment, disaster response and recovery. and survey i am working very hard with many members regarding a much more streamlined your hocrisy in fema. human behavior and risk planning and evacuation planning. evacuation is critical, particularly to lessen and mitigate any impact on humans and any possibility of human deaths. so i look forward to all of your comments on these and other areas, and look forward to continuing on the track of significant and progressive research in all of these areas using our resources in noaa and across the federal government. thank you, mr. chairman.
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>> senator martinez, my colleague and my cosponsor. >> thank you, mr. chairman. you are going to say martinez, were you? >> oh, no. not at all. [laughter] >> i know better. i'm from florida. >> i could take that would from someone else but not from you. thank you so much. we are pleased to have you here today and have today's hearing on something that is so important to the gulf states for sure. but we think really to the root whole country. my time in the senate i have been very focused on this problem and i worked very closely with my dear friend and colleague, senator nelson. as well as others here on the capital to try to look for ways that we could get more expertise, more research, get some of the very brightest and best in our science and government, academic institutions and the private sector to better understand hurricanes. according to the national science board from 2002 through 2007, hurricanes cost
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approximately $180 billion in losses compared to 14 billion from earthquakes. yet there isn't a nationally targeted research initiative for hurricanes like the national earthquake hazards reduction program. these deadly storms that killed over 2000 people in the last six years, and with a majority of our nation's population living near the coast it is critical that we begin to have more coordinated and targeted strategy for dealing with hurricanes. there is no doubt in my mind that any state like florida, this is a very, very much connected to the future of our state as we look at the economic damage that can occur, but also the problem we've had with insurance which i know we will be addressing today. and i should also say that as a neighbor to the caribbean, and to central america, that so much damage and devastation has occurred in that region in the last several years, and it does seasonably because it is an area that is prone to these kinds of events. and so the kinds of research that we can do will not only be
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of great benefit to our country, we will save as we do more mitigation, billions of dollars in after soaring cost, but it will also be of some real help to our neighbors and countries who really have a lot less to do with these problems themselves. so thank you for being here and i look forward to your testimony. >> as we discussed, what we're going to do is not read a bunch of boring statements that people just read. what we are going to do is i want to have a conversation. i want to have a dialogue, and i want you to bring it out. so what i will do is ask a couple of questions here. we will not have a time limit. and then i'm going to throw at you, senator vitter, and did you, senator martinez. dr. droegemeier, tell me, from
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1987 to 2006, hurricanes cost $137 billion in insured losses, whereas earthquakes caused 19 billion in losses. and yet, hurricanes receive substantially less money in research funding than earthquakes. can you share with us why this might be? >> in fact, let me thank you and your colleagues for holding this hearing and in recognizing the importance of hurricanes to our society. you a nicely laid out some of the challenges we face, the economic and societal impacts, the tremendous loss of life that occurs. i thank you for the. to your question, senator, that was one of the things that motivate the national science board to look at the notion of why we don't have a concerted focused effort on hurricanes. not in the sense that we were competing with the earthquake community, but we really looked
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at them as a role model saying they have been a great job of mobilizing necessary assets, intellectual capital, the talent. and really attack the problem in an incredible way. so we said hurricanes, as you mentioned, are very devastating so why do we not had that. we really set upon a course actually to address that question by putting together what we think is a thoughtful plan come a really focused plan and a very balanced approach for addressing the hurricane problem, not just as a weather problem which in fact has been the case for a long time and appropriate it so. but if you look at the hurricane, hurricane is really a weather driven social site infrastructure, economics, policy problem in its many dimensions. all the way from putting sensors in the field to collect data like they do for earthquakes, taking the state and putting them in predictive models, predicting when and where hurricanes will inform, the intensity, and providing uncertainty estimates of those types of quantities. looking at a banquet in, mobilizing people for predisaster preparation, the
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actual landfall, the post response, rebuilding. is a problem that is really unique and it is actually different than in earthquake problem because of its vitality. of what it encompasses from sensors in the field to human response behavior and that sort of thing pixel with the science board did with that recognizing that fact, we put together this plan for a national initiative that really would look to the earthquake community as a good example, role model, but yet taking it in the context of hurricanes. like what research do we need. who needs to be involved in what are the key challenges, and especially what are the priorities, what needs to come first to one of the things i think as lawmakers you might be interested in knowing, and this has some similar to earthquakes, how predictable are hurricanes? fundamentally, how predictable are these things? and the reason that is important to you is if we are 90% of the way to predicting hurricanes, which i don't think we are, and that last 10% will be an enormous cost that might not be the best way to invest. if we know we are quite a
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distance and a lot of them to go, progress to be made, then we are to be investing. i think it is very clear we are not near the limit of predictability of hurricanes. that is an important question that begs the earthquake community as it does us. senator, it is a very important question and we will address that in our report to look at putting on track a very sustained, focused effort on hurricanes. not just as a weather problem but by bringing in social sciences, engineering, wind engineering, and ecological sciences in a completely integrated way for all these folks talk to one another. they interacted their models communicate with one another. we're looking at predicting a hurricane as a complete, total problem for society, not just as a weather problem. >> all of your written statement will be entered into the record so that we have that basis of information. mr. nutter. >> senator nelson, i wanted to
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what dr. droegemeier said. insurance studies hazard events worldwide and if i could provide the committee for the record their chart showing exactly what has been mentioned here, and that is a relatively steady the number of geophysical advanced earthquakes, that nature, and pretty dramatic rise which i realize you can see from that distance, and the number of climatological events. it seems to me that what should be driving this agenda is that our population and the values at risk has increased at extraordinary amount in hurricane prone areas. and that if we were not in the past providing enough research money to support hurricane research, we have every reason to do so now as our population has shifted into areas of greater and greater risk. in my prepared statement there is a data to support what the insured dies of risen to be at the number of people. it is a dramatic rise. >> your chart will be entered into the record.
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senator vitter? senator martinez? >> maybe what i should do is give each of you others who have not spoken at this point to give us a quick opening and then i will follow-up with some questions and make sure all of you get a chance to get in some of your thoughts. and then let me come back to you on questions. >> and you might discuss whether or not you think we are making progress on reducing hurricane impacts. dr. spinrad. >> thank you, mr. chairman. actually i would like to follow-up on a particular aspect of what dr. droegemeier alluded to, in that the hurricane forecast and prediction capability is a comprehensive set of solutions. within noaa which of course includes our national weather service, we have responsibility for developing improved capability on the front end, especially on the prediction and
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forecast in providing warnings and information that emergency managers, local managers can use. now, we do that through a rather extraordinary combination of capabilities. and i found it fascinating, the image that you should, sir, of hurricane charley represents the culmination of capabilities in terms of satellite support, in terms of enhanced models and observations, in terms of our ability to work with coastal managers through the national ocean service. and of course on the very front end, the research that goes into that capability to provide and improve forecast. we have made dramatic improvements over the last several decades in the track forecast. where will that hurricane makes landfall. not as dramatic in the intensity forecast. and the consequence of this is that emergency managers will, through a precautionary approach, take the forecast with respect to intensity and make assumptions about increased
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intensity. because all too often as well, many of these hurricanes rapidly intensify as they make landfall. i had the personal expense of flying through hurricane ike last year as it passed from cuba to the shore and intensified over a very short period of time to a category two hurricane. why does it do that? how does it do that, when does it do that. we have recognized that in order to do our part in the comprehensive forecast and response capabilities that dr. droegemeier alluded to, we need to enhance our investment, our research investments. specifically, to improve the intensity forecast and most notably for those rapidly intensifying storms. as a result, with an emergency appropriation supplemental appropriations last year, we were able to dramatically increase the investment on the research and predictive
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capabilities this year in our fy10 budget in fact we have increased our request so that we can develop high resolution models, work with our partners, which is a fundamental aspect of the research initiative that you have put forward so we worked closely with the national science foundation. we work closely with u.s. navy. we work closely with nasa. we work closely with the minerals management service, and with the department of homeland security to develop new techniques to enhance that forecast. for example, this year in about a month, we will deploy high altitude balloons, lots of them. in the spawning area for hurricanes to see if that information that we get before the hurricanes develop, even as they are simply tropical depressions, can that help us to provide improved forecasts, especially for the intensity forecast. that, coupled with increased investment, especially in association with the national
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science foundation and some of the social sciences, how does one interpret the forecast. we may have the best forecast ever. and that, i would use hurricane katrina as an excellent example. it was one of the best forecasts that has been provided, but we all know the devastation. why is it that people respond the way they do? how can we help people manage in uncertainty and improve our products and services? so it's both the physical sciences of improving the forecast for observations and models, and the social science associated with interpretation. that is the noaa responsibility embedded within that copperheads of enterprise that dr. droegemeier alluded to. >> one thing i would say in that regard is that it seems like when the forecast gets enhanced, because of a lack of predictive ability or intensity, you end up with a forecast that doesn't meet expectations of the population. and so we got ready for a big storm and there was a big nothing. and we got another warning. it was a big storm, a big
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nothing. then there was a story about the third when it comes along, nobody gets prepared for because we always ride them out. we are always finding is going to be a four and came out to be a 2. i think people develop, particularly in places like florida where we get them so often, this is no big deal, you know. with the enhancement part i also remember flying with senator nelson, i think it was wilma or naples, and the damage was surprisingly not. and as we came across the everglades and on into fort lauderdale, the damage was from and to. and that storm intensified after it made landfall while it went over the everglades i think it was wilma but did that. it was just remarkable. >> will not actually hit the un- urbanized part of the state where the counterclockwise winds hit the coast, was actually down there in the 10000 islands where there is no, no civilization
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there, except mangroves. >> that's right. >> across that most everglades, it kept up its speed and by the time it got to miami, and fort lauderdale, it is some real damage. one of the things, wilma was a record setter in the meteorological community with respect to intensification, which is exactly why we have emphasized trying to focus on the rapidly intensifying storms. the other point i would make is, we need to work hard to make sure the public understands, for example, that our two and three day forecast are not as good as the one day forecast was, say, a decade ago. and for the most part, what we have seen is that people have enhanced confidence in that 24 hour forecast. but the other issue, of course, is how does one interpret the uncertainty associated with that forecast? and as i think all of the members of the committee
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understand when we put the forecast out, we include a cone of uncertainty. what does that mean? it's not good enough for us simply to put that out. we need to develop the tools of the people understand how to interpret that. >> dr. wells? >> i want to agree that it is very important to study the problems that we have had with that. i would like to say that in the texas experience in the last several years we have dealt with two hurricanes, oh three and more recently with ike, in which the crack was not very well forecast until the very last 24 to 36 hours before landfall. let me give you a concrete example of the impact that that has. we can all agree that it is necessary to evacuate nursing homes, assisted living centers, citizens that are homebound that have physical or sensory disabilities that live in the area that would be affected by storm surge and i went. we can do this in a couple of different scenario's. we can wait until the last 24 to
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36 hours before tropical storm force winds reached the coast, and which at that time we have a reasonably good track prediction. however, if we do that, we are likely, if we have an over evacuation as we had during hurricane rita, we could have been trapped in traffic that we could even with feeder bands coming in, we could have flooding, which could also cause them to be trapped here or they would have a very long and tiring evacuation for this fragile community. or we can do as we do in texas now. we can take that period between 72 and 48 hours before landfall, and attempt to evacuate that community at that stage. now, when we do that, in the cases of these storms with poor track conditions we already evacuate and we place in jeopardy these very fragile citizens that if we had as good a forecast that we now have 24
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hours out, if we had that at 48 to 72 hours out we would have a solution to this dilemma. right now there is no good solution. >> it's amazing how much better the tracking has now progressed, but interestingly, used, dr. spinrad, the example of charlie. i flew not into charlie, but above charlie in your noaa g4 and that was when they still had it down south cuba in the caribbean. and by the time it got to the peninsula of florida, it was headed straight for tampa bay. and all of a sudden, all of our predictions, we had no idea. it suddenly came in with a left hook, and it turned sharply to the right, and it went right across charlotte harbor hitting
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straight on. people had evacuated from tampa bay and had come to the holiday inn at potter korda, and they were at ground zero. and then it kept right up the spine of the state, right up the peace river through polk county, orlando. it came out somewhere just north of the kennedy space center. so all of our predictions -- and by the way, i think because of your g4, you figure that you've got 15% better accuracy, is that correct? >> the accuracy over the last decade is i believe even higher than 15%. attributable in part to the g4, but i would also say largely attributable to other observation techniques. and probably mostly because of the improvements in the model's. >> what are you going to do if the g4 is down for maintenance or because of an accident?
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>> we have several contingencies. first and foremost, we are relying on our strong and codified relationship with the air force. they have agreed to provide the c-130 gap filler capability. >> it can get as high. >> it can't get as high. part of this though a link to the work that we have done with the department of homeland security the high altitude balloons, the extent we are doing this year in fact would suggest that we can get similar kinds of observations from those rays of balloons. also, we can increase the drops on observation and i believe you saw that activity from the g4. we can increase the drops on density with the aircraft c-130s. and with our t-3 hurricane hunters. so we have a series of steps that we can accommodate and i would point out the additional observation capability that we are testing this year i am convinced will provide some of those enhanced observations. >> so you are not worried about
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the column of air from the max altitude of the c-130 and the p-3, which is somewhere in the range of 33000 feet, you would miss that column of air at the top of the hurricane, which is from 45000 down to that 33000. >> that's why we are trying techniques using the bulletins. that's why some of our modeling capabilities should allow us to do some extrapolation from the top of the profile of the p-3 and c-130 flight profiles as well. but i cannot tell you what the consequences of not having that full set of observations will be, absent the observations we get from the blue and. >> senator martinez, please continue. >> i am very interested. i wonder if that is not part of something that you might be able to share some information with us. >> survey.
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certainly. the notion of having a system where we connect the dots between social behavioral, forecasting, engineering, all of these different sciences to get a system in place where we protect the communities is really music to our ears. building codes help us on new. new homes, after katrina, after target mitigation, we look at more something to help with the unfortunate problem that we construct most of our homes without the benefit of the modern building code. do we have to have both. the problem is we don't. we have pockets of success with building codes in places like florida, although i would point out that even florida had a very big loophole in the panhandle until 2007. we have pockets of success with mitigation programs. again, florida, south carolina,
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soon mississippi have put programs in place to harden existing precode older homes. their activities are things like enhancing roof attachment, better high wind shingles, protecting windows, doors and garages. again, unfortunately just as we have got these new emerging programs, they are desperate for funding. having to make their case very hard now, now they find themselves again unfortunately competing with things like weatherization. so as an organization in a hundred partner strong movement who are looking at how to get that end result, that outcome intercommunity, and we need the forecasting and we need the track, but in the end, maybe if we could get to the point where the structures are sound, that is minimized. because we can safely, you know, shelter in place families outside the flood zones can do what people do in places like bermuda. they can batten down the
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hatches, and they can stay put and safely so. they don't have to evacuate. they don't have to go to shelters and be fed. and cared for. so when we look at things like the new mitigation programs that we would love to see an national model, because those programs work. the florida return on investment has been calculated to be the one. south carolina has reported homes that are in the program getting 23% on average savings on insurance. 29% on average savings on energy because if they do the windows. but with a focus on weatherization, what we've got to stop doing it simply looking at one piece. we can't get green building against energy resistant construction against disaster. we need to be holistic. for example, with weatherization, you are talking about things and activities that look at addicks, windows, doors, walls. those are the very same things you look at for wind resistance. so if we are going to inspect
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homes in coastal communities and weatherized them, we are replacing the windows, let's also put in an impact resistant windows so that the dollar spent for weatherization are not wasted windowsills, which remained vulnerable, are swept away. the building code system that we have is excellent in terms of creating model codes, but it is not fast enough. applied science and research informed building codes could help resolve some of the debates that occur unnecessarily. simple things like taking additional nails and putting them into a roof decking often mean the difference between a home that is completely destroyed and one that is not. but so often that isn't done, and groups are destroyed and committees are destroyed as a result. so our focus really, and it is incredibly encouraging to hear that you are putting forth a program that would integrate
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across all of this because the key is information sharing. our engineers across the academic community and the states that typically get hit like texas and florida and south carolina are doing phenomenal work. and discovering things like a simple handful of nails, other affordable ways to strengthen homes. but we've got to get those into a system so that it is always done. with research behind that information, i think that is what earth quake has succeeded, really by comparison when you talk about the investment in earthquake research, it's almost made a lot of the debate about the specific building practices moved because people know this is what we have to do. so ditto on win32 can get past the debate of whether or not things work because we put enough research behind the findings, and the building code will deliver that protection to the homeowners each and every time. the breakdown between the developer, the code adopter,
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down to the citizen who doesn't even know to ask, is extraordinary and i think that is why we lose communities. >> i will never forget in the aftermath of hurricane andrew in 1992, in which all of the habitat for humanity homes survived when so many of those other subdivisions were just blown away. that people would come up to the head of habitat because they had a habitat sticker on his briefcase and say thank you, thank you. and the press would come up and ask him, why did the habitat homes survived? and his answer was inexperienced. and they would say inexperience? what do you mean? and he would say we do it with volunteers and instead of driving to nails, they would drive can nails. [laughter] . .
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>> for the regulations where the hints are you have to evacuate. the structure itself of the new home is so much better. but we would still ask that
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evacuate, because they can't resolve the attachment issue. and we also look to -- traditionally we've always held out the manufacturer of a mobile home. there are other options and things that can be done that we can overcome attaching the home to the foundation. that's when with we get into trouble. this is another place that's ripe with confusion. and the lack of information about what worked and what doesn't when it comes down to it as a family, we need to be confident that whatever we dwell it's safe to say. and our rule of thumb if you don't know which building code or which regulation, it's that case, how can you possibly make a decision that could be life or death on behalf of your family. with respect to the manufacturer housing, i think again, we're very decentralized. so we don't have good information. and until we resolve attaching
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homes to the foundation, one good wind storm, and it doesn't really have to be a torrent consistently brings death and injury. and that's unacceptable. >> and there's property loss too. huge amounts of property loss. even if people evacuate. the mid grace not only about life and limb, but also about property. >> that's right. many my longer version i have a 22-state analysis on the economic impact of building notes and mitigation. it's clear that i pulled texas out all of the 22 states, in texas, the advantage insured losses are around $1 billion. if you put in modern building code and reduce that by 40%. if you put in codes plus, which is just some of the things that are absent from the code you could reduce that to $200
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million per year. taking the advantage annual from $1 billion to $200 million. the insurance challenges, it becomes very clear that you can remove them over time. and that's i think the analysis -- excuse me, is very compelling and i think has gone a long way of getting some attraction around the discussion. i'd like to think so. >> senator. >> specificically what research gathering tools and programs would you put at the top of the list in helping agree the goals laid out in the improvement project? i know they are all worthwhile and helpful. but what tools and programs would you put at the top of the list in terms of having positive impact? >> senator, i'd start to answer
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your question by saying we think about the category of research investment that will attribute to it. and in a very course definition those would be observations and modeling and what we can data assimilation, getting the observations into the models. so for example on the observational side, one of the things that we feel is very important is characterizing the nature of the heat content in the ocean as the storms are coming across the ocean. so improving our ways of finding the total heat content, how much heat is in the full ocean is one observational technique we need to improve. also low-level winds. we've got high-level winds, upper-level winds around the storm. but for years we have not been making observation of the lowest-level winds. they might be influential in how
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the hurricane is structured. so what we started doing in that regard is launching small unmanned aircraft in areas where we would not want to put p3 and c130s and g4s. and on the modeling side, i think if you talk to most of the modelers, they will tell you our real challenge is increasing the resolution. bringing the size of the model grid down to 5 kilometers and maybe even 1. as you might imagine that demands much, much more computational horsepower. we've spend a lot of resources investing in computers. on the data side, we work closely with the academic researchers who have improved the capability to absorb,
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including radar observations from the aircraft in realtime into the models so that with a lag of less than an hour or two we can have the observations going to a supercomputer such as the one we use in texas into the national hurricane center to improve what we call the forecast guidance, the model output that the forecaster, the critical human in the loop, can then take to develop that forecast. so it's models, observations, and data assimilation are the critical components in the research investment. >> okay. and let me ask you on the other end of the process in terms of the end result, the goals laid out, and the hfrt for improvement. what do you see as being the most eminently achievable, reducing cracking error, extending forecast lead time, increasing forecast accuracy,
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what area do you expect to see the most improvement in? >> we've already seen dramatic improvement in continuing to improve the forecast on the track. just last year by using the supercomputer in texas we were able to bring the track down on one or two storms that we were studying. i would say that extending the forecast of and by itself is directly doable right now. the real parenthetical aspect of that is extending the forecast with some accuracy. so we will make immediate improvements on track. we already saw that last year. we have started to make improvements on intensity. we have foot the goal on the improvement project rather high. it is a high bar to reach to
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improve the track and intensity forecast by 50% over the 10-year period of what we call the hurricane forecast improvement project. but i'm convinced we will reach all of goals. probably on the track we will reach it sooner. okay? and then for dr. wells, the simulations you run, what do they suggest about the relative effectiveness in terms of productive infrastructure of softer options like wetlands restoration versus structures and how those interact and build on each other. >> well, we has been to be -- we happen to be using the same supercomputer than they are using for forecast. we are using it called the advance circulation model. and that allows us to increase
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the model space issue resolution from 50 to 20 meters so you can represent the built infrastructure on the surface. what we have done recently, the team that is led by professor dawson and his assistant in the the university of texas. they have taken hurricane ike from that, especially from the wind fields, and they have run stimulations as the land fall as the storm occurred. and they have taken a concept called the ike dike, which is texas a & m. this is a sea barrier that would be if built 60 miles, all of galveston all the way over to peninsula. and they've run both of the simulations with and without the
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dike. they have also taken ike and created a category four and run the same stimulation. so you can see on the hard option side of using things like dikes and storm gates, what the consequences might be. there are also the soft options. wetlands restoration and some restrictions on led use and development on the coastline. these are usually seen as categorically the opposite. you have to pick one or the other. we can see what best combination would work for different areas. there are maybe combinations that would work for one particular landfall scenario that would fail or create bigger problems for the landfall scenario. the wonderful thing about the modeling is we can stimulate hundreds of storms use historical storms and use storms
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that are purely our design and we can test these different protective measures that can be taken both built infrastructure as well asal central processes. >> also for dr. wells, you mentioned in terms of forecasting storm search to help with rescue operations that in addition to natural gee graphic data, a full database should contain social gee graphical data. what it would be useful how it would be useful on the social geographic. >> i should first say that i and my team work in the operation center. we work with state electeddive
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governor and we're constantly interpreting the model forecast and we're taking runs from the supercomputer in texas advance computer center and looking at the impact geography. how what we see in the physical side, those high magnitude impacts are not necessarily the areas where you want the first responders to go. i'll give you a concrete example. if we had ground zero being in east beach, we have an area there that is developed with half-million beach houses that are second homes. very high rent, areas that are not primary dwellings, areas where certainly the residents would have a means to self-evacuate. that might well be the area to have the highest magnitude impact.
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six niles away, you have a number of social factors. you have elder rein neighborhoods who are living in older housing stock. you have single-parent, low-income wage earners who may not be able to leave the island because of their job requirements. you have people that again, they have a medical special need. you have a number of factors that are social factors. and you need to be able to overlay the impact from the physical impact that particular geography with the distribution of these populations within the community that have specific risk. we need to be able to evaluate and compile that as a distribution for the population. because the two overlap, social and physical risk, that's the threat geography. that where we need to be able to
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do search and clear and it's where you want to be able to get in the very earliest moment to center to check those neighborhoods to see those people are safe. >> o.k.. that's all i have right now mr. chairman. >> mr. nutter, we haven't forgetten you. i want you to comment on how better construction methods and the stronger building codes can save lives and property and reduce the economic losses. since you're in the reinsurance business, how does this improve forecasting in modeling also help bring down the economic loss? >> there's no question it's been mentioned by several people that improved forecasting where people can be out of harm's way is going to save lives. that will not necessarily save
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property damage unless we do something to mitigate these properties from the statistic. losses from hurricane andrew caused about $20 billion in today's dollars of insured losses. that would have been reduced by 50% of residential property, and 40% of commercial property if the destroyed and damage structure had been built with florida's 2004 building code to miss chapman-henderson's point. there are ways to do this. other statistics that homes built experienced the 60% reduction in the frequency, actual losses of property losses and 42% of the dollar amount of insurance claims during hurricane charlie in 2004. i don't think there's any question that improved research
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is important. but improved research needs to be with the hurricanes not just the physical call interest but the interaction with the environment as we are saying. but also the natural environment and buffers. c wells point about the ability to reevaluate as well as built buffers is an interesting way to look at this and research focus on that would be of immense value to the people who live in these areas. >> i recall also a huge part of economic loss that we've gotten better at preventing. after the hurricane has come through and people have holes in their roofs, by fema being ready so that it can get plastics in there so people can cover up the holes that you can save an
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enormous amount of economic damage. because if there's a hole in your roof, the rains come after the hurricane is gone, and then of course that then causes all the insurance loss inside the home. you want to comment about that? mr. nutter and miss chapman henderson. >> there's an immediate response. the government has not always been fairly prepared tour maybe even fairly criticized for its response. but the reality is those who might come in thought help need access to those areas which include debris removal anything that would focus on first responding areas would be a great value in reducing these losses. >> all right. dr. spinrad i'm going to test your forecasting ability. okay.
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we've will el niño is arriving. it is the warming of the pacific waters which tend to lesson the activities in the atlantic hurricane. now thus far we haven't had any activity in the atlantic on hurricanes. so, i mean of my significance, so tell us what's going to happen in the atlantic. >> the first -- first i would point out that my meteorologist friends are this charge of marketing not production. with that in mind, i'm an oceanographer, that's my qualifying statement. the outlook that we provide
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every year at the start of hurricane season from which the information that you have comes. this year did take into account what we thought was the emergence of an el niño, now we have better information about the emergence of el niño. that outlook did include that. second is, our look will come out on august 6th. that will take into account the enhanceed forecast. you are absolutely right that the statistical in additions from el niño are that in in fact actually increases the upper-levels winds. as a result it knocks off and sheers off the developing storms and therefore diminishing number and intensity. based on that physics, one would assume you would see a reduced probability.
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as you know this year's outlook effectively said a 50% probability of 9 to 14 storms. on august you have identify how that has changed. i would simply point out the name storms this year does not of and by itself give any indication of what the season will look like. i remind you of course hurricane andrew, a, there are the first storm occurred in late august. the latest a-named storm that is the first hurricane occurred on august 30th. that was hurricane arlen. and historicically, especially in florida, you can see that august and september are the most intense months for hurricanes. so i think we can't simply say that since we have seen an emerging stronger, we therefore can conclude that we are safe.
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and i'd also point out that obviously from our stand point, one severe storm is catastrophic, and we are more concerned with nailing the forecast with respect to those individual storms than what the statistical average outlook might be. but i think in some, since you have tested my forecast capability, we will see on august 6th an outlook that accommodates the consequences of what is now clearly an el niño signal. >> all right. that being the case, would it be responsible to expect the late hurricane season of which you pointed out andrew was in late august, that because of el niño appearing, that it lessens the likelihood of the atlantic storms since it sheers off the top of them? >> statistically, yes. >> okay. >> statistically.
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but as i point out and in fact i would have to look back at the record, there have been a number of very strong storms during el niño years as well. >> was el niño present in any of those years that you mention andrew or arlene. >> it was. if there was a week el niño during andrew. so that just disproves the whole theory? >> well, to the extent that statistics are disprove yes. >> in other words, we take no comfort in the fact that el niño is there. >> that's right. there maybe some comfort in fitting curves. but clearly i would not want to go to the citizens of florida, louisiana, and texas and say since it's el niño the statistics are such that you might have a slightly reduced
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probability of severe storms. that's not consolation in my opinion. >> had you working with hud and other agencies to tie the science and the coastal management and the community preparations together? >> noah is working with a variety of different agencies. i would also point out that we are in the department of commerce, we work closely -- >> senator martinez, i wanted before you left, and i really appreciate you being here. i know you do. and i just want to -- since you and i introduced this package of bills, do y'all generally support these -- this six pack that we've put together? basically, the legislation is a lot about what we've been talking about here.
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is there anybody that doesn't? >> as you know the reinsure sector has an ongoing dialogue about the value of the private sector's role in financing and the role that government can or should play with it. so with that caveat, we are strongly supportive of the bill that you have introduced. in fact we think the funding is more modest than it should be. it should be increased. >> so it's fair to say the reinsurance industry would not support the bills that we've introduced with regard to the federal government giving a loan guarantee to the states for their catastrophe funds? >> the loan guarantees without some conditions with regard to the underlying insurance markets and insurance being risk-based
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would be important conditions with regard to that to make certain that's it responsibility being priced. and that the people are paying based upon the risk that they have. >> you know, what i don't understand is when the big one hits, and the big one is a category four or five hitting a dense part of the urbanized coastline there's going to be more business that you can shake a stick at. and you're going to have to have the states strengthened in their reinsurance funds. their catastrophe funds in order to accommodate that kind of economic loss. and rather than you're industry looking at that as competition from the federal government, it seems like that we aught to be able to marry up the two going in the same direction. comment? >> well, yes, i'd be happy to
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comment. the private reinsurance sector, which is all i can speak for, wants to write catastrophe risk in florida and other states. it's a business that is driven by insurance companies were reinsurance. we want to provide that market. to the extent that the state of florida that recolludes or preempts companies from buying, it's an unfair advantage we would say for the government programs to do that. so we would love to find the compromise that works. but i would say that the private sector cannot easily compete with the public sector in providing reinsurance as it's being done in the state of florida. >> thank you, senator martinez for being here. the insurance industry is split on this issue of what we're talking about here. the reinsurance issue doesn't support the federal guarantees
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for a state catastrophe fund, whereas generally the insurance companies do. and i just wanted the record to show that. thank you. >> all right. thank you, senator vitter. may i continue on with regard to once we know that a storm is going to hit, a lot of you have talked about the preparations that people need to make to move to safety. dr. wells, for example, you all had such a horrendous tie up on your interstate in trying to evacuate. that's happened in florida as well. and then everybody gets smart and figures out a way with the highway patrol to make the interstate one way so people can get out.
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what's your experience with other states doing what texas and florida have done? >> i'll risk arguing with you a little bit here. my background is hydrodynamics. i can say that for hurricane wreath that, you also have so much roadbed. if you have an overevacuation has did occur, we had 2.7 million people over a very short time span that they were going to get on the roads. there's no solution to that. you can start with 20 lanes of traffic heading outbound and 20 miles down the road there will be six lanes. where do you want to choke flow? back towards the city where you have some resources to take care of people or do you let them go out into the country side and sit out there for several hours? again, without the built
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infrastructure to take care of that in terms of transportation, i don't think flow gets you out of those instances. what you need of course is a phased evacuation for the people in greatest jeopardy have the opportunity to get out first. galveston county and island have the opportunity to get ahead of the traffic stream. then you do not want to evacuate certain areas of county which are more than 50 miles from the ocean or subjective to high winds or flooding of the kind that would put life in jeopardy. >> ms. chapman-henderson, do you want to answer that? >> i do. i am only familiar with the building code to the legislation. i can hardly endorse those aspects. and our partnership is evenly divided on other insurance issues as well. with respect to the evacuation,
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it seems we like it look at it in aideal sense between those that reside in a flood zone or not as step one. and throughout i think it's uniform that if you live in a flood zone you have to leave. because there are too many variables of life safety being a challenge there. but beyond that the home owner on the business owner or anyone seeking to take shelter, they have knowledge of what their house can do. a performance forecast, for example, and they can confidently make decisions about evacuation and take themselves out of the overevacuation problems. i think you're talking about for florida where the east coast of florida ended up heading west and spending all types of
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problems. people spent the night in parking lots and were more vulnerable because we didn't know where the storm would land. we have as you know an experience right now down in epcot where we bring through more than a half a million experience a storm and engage in game playing to do structures and different aspects of the hurricane safety. we do know what we find is people do not know. they don't know that there are differences in building codes with respect to how things are built. their expectations that it would be built properly in the first place. a very common question is the notion of roof shape, being more aerodynamic capable. people come us to every day and
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say why do we build a house that isn't if we're here. why do we do that in first place? i think the public's expectation that we would do it light. it's designed to be a minimum legal standard. they don't know there are different of historic cam strength codes and the modern codes are better. they don't put the information together to make decisions and as a result they just leave. if we could get to a place where people understand what they have and what they can do, shelter in place, stay off the roads, and leave them available to the responders and the others that need to be there and need to be mobile for the storm. they can become, they can remove themselves from the definition of catastrophe. we received thousands of calls. people call, i remember, during
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isabelle. people from maryland calling us and saying am i in the flood zone. so we have a great amount of work to do with respect to equipping people with information about first and foremost am i in or out of the flood zone, an second of all, will this house survive? i think that's a strong link and how we could improve performance and evacuation. >> with the amount they are having to pay for homeowners insurance, if they are in a coastal area you would think that people would be asking about those things when they buy a house. >> absolutely. one of the things that is very promising as i mentioned before florida and south carolina and mississippi is programs too hard in the home. there's a definite link between the hardening that address the strength of roofs, windows, and doors, and insurance set up
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discounts for those areas like southeastern florida that have the highest insurance rates, although they do compete with texas. they are looking ann at up to 50 % insurance discount or credit on the insurance with the wind portion of the insurance premium. so there are those that report the advantage savings in florida from the hardening program is $773 per year. southeast florida is closer to $2,000 per year. that is a tremendous incentive as you can imagine for people who have older homes to purchase shutters that are tested and improved and invent in impact resistant garage tools. i think that's why the program has been successful because of the financial incentives antesafety value and the information that people can shelter and place. there's a lot of letters from
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people who reside in miami. one in particular came from the program, an elderly citizen who described her experience of being psychologically traumatized for all of hurricane season each and every year following andrew. but because she was able to receive a matching grant from the program she could rest easy this season because she's taken all the steps necessary to harden her home. >> senator hutchison. >> thank you, mr. chairman, i'm very pleased to be here. i think what you and senator martinez are doing is very important for stateses like yours and states like mine that are hurricane-prone. and i also have maybe a more -- more reaching and not yet proven suggestion in a bill that came out of commerce committee a
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month or so ago to look at not only ways that we are able to better predict the impact and the course of the hurricanes which y'all are doing. but also are there ways we might consider through research mitigating the effects of those hurricanes with some kind of intervention. so i hope that my bill passes, i hope that your bill passes, and i want to put my statement in the regard, my opening statement in the record. but let me just, i've tried to ask my staff here what has already been covered. so i'm going to try not to duplicate. but i do want to ask c wells because i had the personal information while we were all watching ike by the minute. i would amazed at the accuracy
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of where it was hit, when it would hit, intensity, that your ranger computer was able to model and sharing with all of the federal agencies, the weather service, the local and state emergency services, it was the best i have ever seen. and so i want to ask you, what did you learn from what you were able to get? is there something more that can be done that we should explore? or is there something new that you think should be added for this year's hurricane season? because the ability to track the way you did, and what was amazing is to look at it after the fact that everything you predicted was exactly where and when you had predicted it would happen. so now my question is we're going into hurricane season. and what more should we be doing, can we be doing and what
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is this new ranger capability going to do for the rest of our states that are so vulnerable? >> well, i think and dr. spinrad has also talked about their such at noah and running the ranger. we were running the storm search forecast they were running the track and intensity. we were sharing the resources there. there's 60,000 processers to share. the "new york times" had a nice graphic that showed ranger in relationship to all the other supercomputers a couple months ago. it was 6th largest of all the other computers at national laboratories or similar federal facilities. there is a university research that's shareable with many other investigators researching a very wide variety of problems.
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it's a highly adaptive computing resource that we can use for our modeling as well hurricane forecasting. >> and i know you were sharing with noah, is there anything more that would be able to between noah and technology that you have that would get any better or more helpful information to the people on the ground who were trying to prepare? >> exactly. i was about to say probably the area that we haven't explored to the degree that we need to are some of the ways that we can visualizing the information from the models, the outcome of the modeling with and put is boo a context where the public can really assess their personal risk. i think there are lots of model outputs that we see that are maps and various other ways of displaying these results. but they just don't always capture the imagination of the
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public in general. and they cannot see themselves in their homes as being vulnerable to this particular event that we're attempting to give them the model results. we understand that, and we can place first responders in the field. and i can provide information to mayor thomas saying here's what your community is going to look like tomorrow. but i'm afraid we are not doing as effective of job of changing the attitudes and the personal comprehension of risk that citizens have. and i think that modeling, can be sinmatic, and from flooding. when people see their neighborhood and even their residents as effected by the event, that's the future of this. we can get to that level of demonstrating what the impact is going to be. you always hear these people
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after the event saying, i knew that there was going to be bad hurricane. it's going to be as bad as carla, and i lived through that. i just didn't think in my part of town or my neighborhood or my house it was going to be as bad as it was. >> one of the things about hurricane ike was the flooding, the heavy not just heavy, it's not a tsunami, but it is forceful flooding. i flew over the area on the other side of galveston where -- over the peninsula. i've been there many times. and i was flying over it and i was thinking gosh this must be a new construction area because there's nothing here. >> that material was ten miles
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away. >> and that's why all you saw were sticks in the grass. there were no turned over refrigerators, there was no debee, there was nothing. no, i'm not heart of oliver peninsula where all the houses are. and yet there was no debris. that's what people aren't prepared for. i grew up in galveston county. i lived through carla, and i'd never seen anything like it. that's what you are talking about. people can't visualize, they are going to come back and see nothing. it was unbelievable. so that what you mean when you're saying people aren't prepared for what is going to happen, and their immediate
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neighborhoods? >> they have the general concept, but they cannot personalize it and see it in terms of their own geography where they live. and i think that we have now and we certainly will have better in the future a means of doing the predicting of the impact and the means of delivering that information more effectively. we probably need to study how people respond to different kinds of information that's given to them. i don't think there's enough research to show how people concept yulize. i think we really need to take a careful look at this. we can have the greatest science and best knowledge, but if we can't communicate it, it's not going to make a difference. >> you said one other line of questioning to anyone would wish
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to respond. in the field that i'm putting forward, it's time to study the plenty -- present and the past to see if there's any future in modification. in other words there's an example, i don't know if there is possible, but i think we aught to be lacking at it. if you see a certain type of hurricane a hundred miles out in the atlantic, and is there something that could be done there that wouldn't stop it but might make it less powerful when it comes into florida or into mississippi or louisiana or texas or alabama? is there something that we haven't looked at from the past that would give us an indication of maybe a mitigation of the impact because the damages are so much higher now than they
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have ever been because of the intensity. so my question is to anyone. yes? >> senator hutchison, it's a very important question that you ask and one that as your bill states, got a lot of looking at in the '70s. but then there was a drought of weather mitigation activity. i'd like to make four points, i think number one is you really need good numerical forecast models to do weather modification. you need to know the modification you're going to try to impute to the hurricane will have the intended affect. and sos that's a challenge in and of itself and it requires the best research and the best forecast technology you could have. we have stimlaces of thunderstorms and hurricanes. we know there's no question you can chase the course of the hurricane, you can kill it off, you can kill off a thunderstorm
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before it produces a torrent. tornado. then the question is:how do you implement that change? there's a engineering problem. there's been so far ranging approaches proposed all the way from launching ballistic missiles to doing all kinds of thing in space. that is the real challenge. how do you deliver the disruptive influence that will change the course. we just cool the office surface and sure enough the hurricane dies. then the question is how do you do that? the first point you have to have good forest to know that the change is trying to achieve is what you're going to get. second thing is how do you deliver the influence? the third one is an interesting one than that is the untended consequence. for example, hurricane, although they are destructive, they have positive aspects of bringing fresh water. there is a lot of flooding. but they are an important source
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of water recharge. another thing about hurricanes that's interesting. we don't know why they exist. we know why weather occurs, it's the atmosphere's way to balance, and it's not never successful because the sun keeps shining. hurricanes, we don't know why they are there and what purpose they place. if you got rid of all hurricanes, for example, what impacts might that have on the climate. there is where models are come into play. when we resolve them with climb models, when a hurricane starts to form we can kill it off and compare that stimulation with the case where the hurricane is actually allowed to continue. the third point is really one of unintended consequences. the fourth one is really ethics and legal issues. i know you run into this in texas, we do. in oklahoma and kansas, you're spending a lot of money into
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that in private sector. someone said you led out of my waters in the clouds. so it brings in a lot of interesting legal challenges as you cross state lines and geopolitical barriers. but i do think, and i read your bill, it is time for the nation to get serious about weather modification, and there's a lot of research showed, there really is no compelling evidence that it works. we have much more powerful systems which we need, things like that, aircraft, and especially numerical models. the think the scientific community is well posed to address the important challenge you bring across. i applaud you to introducing. there's some interesting ethical and legal issues as well. but the other point i would make just in closing here is in fact when you study modification of the weather, the kinds of questions you ask have great relevance to some of the other
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issues that we deal with in terms of predictability of the atmosphere in general and how you do data stimulations. we might think of it as modifying murks or doing weather modification. but there's a lot we can learn in other areas and challenges in weather forecasting. when we are studying, so it has a double barrel effect on the studying and the issue of weather modification. all the other things it relates to, we can get a great benefit. >> i want to go to that. this is the purpose of the bill. not only to see what might have an effect but what are the unintended consequences. and i think even today when you have clouds in one area, we need to know if it affects weather in another area adversity. and i think that's something because we did like a path on getting data really many years ago, we really need to know now
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more whether to go and what the consequences are. >> thank you. i'd just like to add to points of emphasis. the first is before we modify the system, we need to know what the system is come -- comprised of. we have begun to understand the role such as el niño and la nina. we are understanding the sahara have a very strong influence on whether hurricanes will form. five years ago, we had no idea. the research that goes into understanding the system and development of any weather phenomenon would have to engage in any kind of modification. my second point is unspent the consequences. i hope we would include some
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consequences to ecosystem itself. there's some indications that for example because hurricanes have a major stirring effect they reintroduce nutrients. there are the productivity of the environment. it's the physical consequences, the societal, but it's also the ecosystem consequences. >> i think all those points are well taken and would be part of any kind of study. basically what i want to do is start getting the data. and then from that, know, if we do or don't modify, that's when you start getting into the consequences. it just seems like not knowing is not very enlightened. hopefully we can do something about it. thank you, mr. chairman. i appreciate the opportunity. >> thank you, senatorupson.
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-- senator hutchison. earlier, you were talking about the importance of measuring the winds at the surface of the ocean as a means of frying to predict the direction and intensity of hurricanes. and we used to have a satellite that measured that. but that sat lead is either on the blink or it's about to go out beyond its designed life. and there was an attempt to get another one in there called a sclerometer. the short name was quick scat. what, since we don't have that capability, what are the plans for the next generation of a quick scat? >> surface winds are important. i think there has been some debate as to the full value of
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those data in terms of a proven forecast. nevertheless, i think most of our scientists and forecaster would say having those surface winds is of value. quick scat in fact is viable and fuel to run through 2011 if all things go well. we are in discussion with nasa about development of the next generation ocean surface wind sensor which would fulfill the same data requirements. we also have ongoing discussions for data availability from a scattometer being developed and that would be called a scat. and finally i would at that as i mentioned earlier, there are some approaches that we are testing. one of which is the use of unmanned aerial systems which we have fly into the hurricane and
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directly acquire the surface winds, near surface winds, and the other is a new piece of equipment that we have installed on the aircraft and the air force aircraft and that's called a microwave radiometer, which allowed us to view the ocean surface and see what the winds are. so there are a variety of different approaches. we believe with the viability of quick scat, we have time to develop the solutions so that we can in fact get those surface winds. >> earlier, you all testified about these computer models and the supercomputer with regard to intensity and direction. what about the hurricane models that model what is going to be the economic loss for the insurance industry. do you think that since the insurance companies have their
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own hurricane computer models that we aught to have a public domain computer model? >> i think it's fair to say that there are in this, when it comes to the models, it's -- more is probably better. and having private sector and having that information and findings from those models available is essential. as far as having a public model, i think it's like any model, as long as the data and assumptions and everything that go into the model are accurate and connect, then you get a good product from them. one of the things i've heard and i am not a modeler, but what i have heard in the work that we do is that it is important for us to know overrely on models. they are predictors like anything else of economic loss. i think what's very instructive
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and i think mr. nutter can add a lot of value to this conversation as well, that when we look at the model performance after a storm, there are some excellent track records in terms of, you know, this was anticipated, this amount of economic impact was forecast. that is indeed what occurred. in austin they are more conservative that what actually happens because of the duration after the impacts of the storms and the cost that is already anticipated. ironically, it seems like we come away and i think this is true on the weather, engineering, and economic side, we get the sense that we learn things after a storm and develop a set of beliefs. and for example, on hurricane andrew we learned that stables collapse and we were going to do it better. what happened is we labor under all those beliefs, and that's
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good. but we learn something knew -- new each time. the rule of thumb, i think we find comfort in society and having a set of conclusions. so -- which is always incentive. if the storm makes landfall, you can expect to lose a category. and it can go down to a 2 or 3. after all those years of telling homeowners or citizens okay, it's coming in as a 4 by the time it gets to you it'll be a 3. we might be kind of pat release because of the comfort. but that's not always true. wilma came in as a weak one or two and increased and came out on the east side than the west side. i guess the way i look at models is as long as the information goes in it's excellent that we can be guided by them. certainly an economic impact
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have been proven. we have to keep that in mind. every major catastrophe and i've been in and around them for 25 years, we learn something altogether different about what the outcomes are going to be. so i don't know if you wanted to add to that or not. >> as senator nelson, i've been proud to serve on the hurricane research center which is affiliated now for some years. that's where the public model was developed. the florida also has an interesting approach to evaluating these models and having a commission that's i think chaired by or staffed by economics from the computer. it's a responsible approach to try to understand the dynamics of these models. it seems to me that one of the real values of the public model whether it's placed is on what the public values are here. so by that i mean what
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mitigation might benefit from an analysis using the public model. what evacuation systems, hardening systems, those kind of things, the public model has not focused on as much as it could and should. it would be valuable in doing so. there's great utility in the public model that would look at the kinds of impacts that these storms have and help everyone understand what those impacts maybe but more importantly what you could do to minimize those impacts. >> does florida have a public model? >> it does. it was developed at the university and funded by the state of florida through the insurance department. >> to what degree to the insurance companies and reinsurance companies use the public model to determine loss? >> i don't think the public model is used by the insurance or reinsurance companies. there are private mod less that are used. and those models all have to go
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through an accreditation process that's a commission in the state of florida. to the extent that they are private and proprietary information, they are still subjective to a review. under the jurisdiction to the state of floss to see what the assumptions that are made in those models. i think the public model is used primarily by the insurance department as a guideline if you will, a guide northeast looking at what the insurance company files and what reliance they face on the private models. >> do you recall about either you or ms. chapman henderson what year the public model was developed by florida international university? >> i would say four years ago. it may have been a couple of years of development. :
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recent studies suggest with the climate changing as we believe it is, as records indicate, we are seeing a shift not in the total number of storms, keeping the number of storms constant, but a larger number of more intense hurricanes, smaller number of less intense hurricanes. we see that shifting the atlantic based on historical records of a few decades. there's also some sense of the hurricane, the power of the hurricane being greater in the last several decades than at has
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been prior to that. those are some evidences we're seeing. it is a challenge to draw definitive conclusions, so the work needs to be ongoing. flipping a coin around, looking at the impact of hurricanes on the climate system, we are seeing some things in the last few years especially that, as dr. spinrad mentioned, discoveries that are surprising. the role of hurricanes changing the balance of currents in the ocean, because they bring up a lot of cold water from beneath, when you have a lot of hurricanes in progression as we saw several years ago, five in the land to call lined up right after one another, that has a longer-term impact on the climate system, the conveyor belts of moisture, of each and energy in the ocean. that has an impact on the large global climate system, the hurricane impact in the climate system. that is something we have not been able to study because climate models have not been able to resolve hurricanes. without a hurricane in the model
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you're missing an important piece, but that is changing with the more powerful computers getting to the resolutions that dr. spinrad mentioned, understanding the trade offs. overall, the notion of our hurricanes are impacted by climate and the impact of hurricane on the climate system is in its infancy where we're seeing some early results that are compelling the lot more work needs to be done. >> can i add something to that? i agree with kelvin droegemeier. in the legislation introduced to fund additional research related to hurricanes, there is a reference to climate change. from looking at the value to the extent that those climate models can be more regionalized, the resolution can be more tailored to local areas, it would be a greater value to local officials and other private and public sector officials in addressing issues associated with climate
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change. >> let's say that we have an increase of one foot in sea level. what does your professional opinion tell you is going to happen to the storm surge level and the inland flooding? >> i wanted to jump into the last conversation. your one foot estimate may be quite conservative. one of the things we do epicenter for space research is the lead principal investigator for the gravity recovery and climate experiment. the two satellite mission that is really looking and probably the greatest detail at the loss of water from greenland and antarctica, it is showing observations, also showing the rate of relative sea level rise
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is increasing more dramatically than some of our previous modelling would have shown. two or three years ago. that estimate that it may only rise a foot or so by the end of the century may be off by a factor of 50%. we could see a considerably larger rise than that. this has tremendous impact on what we want to do in the future as we think about what mitigating steps we are going to take because it is a moving target now. i have friends who are studying barrier systems, geologists who have looked at everything that has formed since the last blaze the asian and they are seeing evidence that sea level is rising faster than it has in 7,500 years if this trend continues. barrier islands did not exist along the texas/louisiana coast in that period. there's some question as to whether they could exist under those conditions. we are getting into a period of instability as this increases.
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if we are going to have large build infrastructure like the dike in these areas, we are going to have to ask these questions, if the trends continue, what are the effective countermeasures we can take? the the tremendous impact on the coast line and i don't think we have comprehended at this stage what the future holds as it unfolds. stanley the modeling is going to help us determine that. >> mr. chairman, if i can add, there's an important component that has been introduced into this discussion. in addition to the climate change impacts, we also recognize that there are periods of several decades when we see increased and decreased frequency, intensity of hurricanes, multi decade oscillation and the question occurring is how much of that is continuing to happen? as we had a discussion with regard to climate change impact, we also have to look at what we
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believe are the naturally occurring, multi decade patterns that mother nature introduces herself. >> but spinrad, are you familiar with a satellite that is sitting on the ground named discover, which would give more precise measurements on climate change? you want to are for your professional opinion on that? >> i am familiar with that. i had the pleasure of talking with former vice president al gore about that particular satellite a few months ago. i think there are clear benefits to the kinds of observations that we would get from a satellite such as discover. i also believe that we have looked very carefully at our priorities for world sensing, the satellites that we have in the hopper, if you will, to be put up in the launch schedule, and i believe that we can't afford to compromise that
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schedule. i think we should have a more vigorous debate and discussion about how and whether and when we should continue launching that kind of capability, but not if it compromises what we have all very carefully agreed are the needs at hand right now. the national research council put out just a couple years ago what they call their decade survey, identifying what they, the nation's premiere scientists, believe the priorities are for earth observations. we have tried to you that as our guide in defining what satellites we should put up, when, for what observations. >> i think we are going to be with get that satellite up because the department of defense has a need for and other instruments to replace an aging satellite at the lagrange point
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between earth and the sun to measure solar flares. the radiation affect upon the earth to warren earth before the solar radiation gets to earth. increasingly, we just put language in the department of defense authorization act that the air force is going to study this, and i think this might be a way that we can kill 2 birds with one stone. >> let me ask mr. franklin w. nutter, how is the insurance industry addressing climate change? clearly, it has an enormous impact on the insurance industry because of all the property that you insure on the coast? >> it is an excellent question. at times i am proud of the industry and at other times disappointed in their commitment
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to this. a number of insurers have, for long time, funded research, private research, as well as talked publicly about the need to address climate change. swiss insurance and munich reinsurance stand out as a paragon of being progressive about looking at this. increasingly we see an interest in the industry to better understanding the science including working with people such as on this panel. the insurance group, insurance brokerage funds academic research through -- the institute for business and home safety renews a companion organization to flash henderson's organization, as i mentioned in my statement, is funding a research facility to look at this. i would hope our industry in the united states would commit more to research, and looking at climate change because of the applications of climate change, the insurance companies, more importantly policyholders, is
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pretty critical to understand. i closed the relationship between our industry and the community of government and private research is pretty critical. >> a decade ago, european insurance companies were getting more interested in the effects upon their economic activities that were american insurance companies. our european companies still taking the lead? >> no question about it. renaissance, a bermuda based company, they have all step forward to fund research as well as to promote better understanding. by that i mean by public research, made available to others, funding research looking at both the health and property light exposures related to climate change. the industry in the united states, historically, has a
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business model that tends to be a retrospective one. they look at actuarial data and a trend it forward. the europeans continue to be more progressive than u.s. industry in trying to understand future events and the impact upon themselves as well as their policyholders. >> i want to conclude by asking anybody who would like to respond, one of the problems we have in the senate is the fact that senators from states that are not coastal states tend to thank hurricanes are not their problem. and if they don't come from california, they think earthquakes are not their problem. we are focusing on hurricanes
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here, but that is just a fact of life, that is human nature. you all want to suggest for the record, on a hurricane bill that senator mel martinez and i have proffered, that seems to meet with widespread support. what is it that you would recommend to us as to how we go about getting the attention of these senators who are not from coastal areas that are threatened by hurricanes? miss leslie chapman-henderson? >> senator nelson, first and foremost as taxpayers, we need to be concerned about the impact of hurricanes because of the significant economic impact on all of us but on a more practical level, i think you can go state-by-state and identify
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impacts that surprise some. one in particular that springs to mind is from hurricane ike and the flooding that occurred in ohio. more than $1 billion in insurance losses happened in ohio because of height. similarly in pennsylvania after hurricane ivan, west virginia after a different storm. hurricanes do not come to the coast and stopped. they move through and cause damage throughout the united states, and is again, one of those things where sometimes looking back at that instead of thinking forward, but i believe we can provide a detailed analysis in case of an economic and societal destruction that follows hurricanes well inland to places that are not traditionally thought of. ohio springs to mind because of last year. >> senator, they are national disruptions to the consequences of hurricane landfalls in particular areas, you only need to look at the high proportion
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of the petrochemical and refining activity that occurs on the texas/louisiana coast, and we have not had the event that would create the distortion and destruction of that system, the kind of hurricane that would go up the houston ship channel for instance. >> we talked mostly about landfall, we talk about impact on the coast, i would remind you, greater than 90% of the imports and exports we enjoy in this country travel by sea. stating that hurricane has safely turned to see is not quite appropriately talk about the impact on that maritime commerce. everything we buy, almost reaching we buy and sell take the vantage of that. there are excellent studies that have shown the impact of adverse weather on the cost of goods and products wherever we buy them in the united states. >> senator nelson, a very important point, that is why such an into gated research approach is needed to understand
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these linkages. some of them are very long terms, the resupply chain, things like the forest industry, some of the the decade impact of hurricane that require massive rebuilding efforts and shipping of the dance services, reallocation of wealth from some part of the country to another and sustaining impact are very long term and we really don't understand that nearly as much as we should. we can give some excellent examples as you heard, but the interactions of all of those components of our society are things that are very complicated, something we don't have a handle on. the research you are talking about, by its nature, will build upon these stories and give credibility to a deeper understanding of their impact on our society. >> if i might add, this is a country of shared values and two of the values we talk about repeatedly here are mitigation, ways to reduce damage to property and loss of life and certainly research in this area is going to have an extra affect
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on other kinds of properties and non hurricane areas. the other shared value would be our responsiveness to people who have had a disaster that have faced that, the government has always been generous in dealing with temporary housing and disaster assistance and response. >> i would just add, in a direct answer, in addition to the excellent comments that you have made to this question of why should senators from non coastal states be interested in the damage of hurricanes, it is also the fact that most of the cost is borne by the american taxpayer, wherever is that taxpayer happens to live, because clearly we have seen in the case of hurricane katrina, almost half of the economic loss
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of that hurricane was born by the federal government in its efforts to try to bring that part of the united states back to life. i want to thank you all, this has been an extensive and very thorough discussion of the issue. you have eliminated this issue enormously. the record is quite full, and that is thanks to your expertise as presented here today. so thank you, and with that, the meeting is adjourned. [inaudible conversations]
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[inaudible conversations] [inaudible conversations] >> tonight on c-span, senior white house advisor valerie jarrett speaking at the nation conference in pittsburgh. she addressed the group over the weekend and took questions on subjects such as health care, detainee's and gay civil rights. the program airs at 8:00 p.m. eastern. also tonight on c-span, president obama's remarks before the group veterans of foreign wars. he talks about the pentagon budget, the war in afghanistan and plans to withdraw troops from iraq. the event took place today in phoenix. >> lobbying, influence and
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money. ellen miller, a co-founder and executive director of the sun life foundation on how they use the internet to provide transparency in government, the communicators, tonight at 8:00 eastern on c-span2. >> this month,'s book tv weekends continue all week in prime time, with more books on the economy, current events and politics. tonight, gillian tests, fritz henderson and senate majority leader harry reid. >> this fall, and to the home to america's highest court, from the grand public places, to those only accessible by the nine justices, the supreme court, coming the first sunday in october on c-span2 -- un c-span. >> now a discussion on technology issues facing congress and the obama administration including cybersecurity, national broadband and government information technology. the lobbying group tec america hosted this group in washington,
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it is about an hour. >> they will not serve a tech policy in washington. to that end i wanted to introduce phillip bond as soon as he put on his microphone, president of tech america. he will have a few opening remarks to kind of the lay of the land of the various issues that we have been watching and what we are looking for in the fall and then we have a number of our policy experts on hand and on the phone as well to facilitate what we hope will be a fruitful q&a session for all of you. >> thank you very much. can you pick it up or not? >> bear with me for one minute. i am technologically challenged. there we go. welcome to everybody, glad you could join us. we are tec america, the largest advocacy group on behalf of the technology industry with 1500 member companies and 3 regional
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affiliates across the country, touch some 16,000 technology companies, and on behalf of all of them i welcome you here. we still have some of our key staff with us today to help us field your questions after i do a quick review, kind of a waterfront of some of the issues still in the policy arena on behalf of the tech center. let me introduce those folks in advance so you know who they are and we will get to questions later on the phone. we have the executive vice president of the public sector grew, all the issues having to do with bringing technology to government. we have bar mcclellan, senior director of tax, health policy, tec america, jeff clark, acting director of our state government affairs program, we lobby in all 50 states on behalf of our industry, and said long couldn't neck, we will have more from him later. with me in the room, jennifer
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kerber, vice president of federal land, and security policy, to my immediate left, trey hodgkins, vice president for national security and federal procurement policy. on my right, joshua larnel, senior vice president of commercial policy and heads our government efforts, and last but subtly not least, liesyl franz, vice president of cyber security policy. let me see if i can do a quick tour of the waterfront for you. from a technology industry perspective, congress the parts for its august break after a very positive start. the recovery act made sure innovation was central to the president and congressional plans in terms of confronting our nation's biggest problems. washington also has taken up with renewed vigor the entire push on cybersecurity, several bills in play and plans to appoint an unprecedented high level advisor in the white
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house. innovation clearly was a priority in the omnibus budget, we saw that expressed in research and development, in computing and alternative energy, smart grids. the question now is where do we go from here? after a very good start, realizing we are in a very competitive world. so far it is fair to say that most of the attention in recovery projects has been 20th-century infrastructure. techamerica and its members are more interested in twenty-first century infrastructure. broadband deployment, revolutionizing healthcare and the information flow, education, smart grids, green technology, this is not to diminish shovel ready project but we are more interested in innovation rated project. let me observe too that the two are not mutually exclusive.
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if we are going to be tearing up roads or building roads or repairing roads and bridges as shovel ready projects are teed up, no reason why we can't also simultaneously be laying down twenty-first century infrastructure, fiber, under those roads, and we have called for exactly that. joshua larnel can talk about that later. to do this, we need to make sure the regulation, planning is done in advance but i would say the tech sector and its individual companies are anxious to get moving. there is a lot to do. meanwhile we are continuing to work with states as well. much of the recovery money flows through to the states, we are working to make sure we continue the innovation headquarters of the world, in part together, techamerica's midwest chapter is asked to partner on the illinois smart grid task force in an effort in the state of illinois
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to establish a physical microgrid test bid for as a natural resource, test bid for smart grid projects that will be coming through the department of energy. as we make progress at the federal and state levels of around these, we also have been urging governors and federal legislators to not forget the contribution that small companies make in this arena. 25% stimulus funding has been targeted for smaller companies, but we are in touch with governors in all the states, with the hills, we are collecting signatures from small companies to write to the governors to make that point. small companies need to understand better how government operates, so techamerica's mission is to be at that intersection to help the companies understand, now that the can plug into these programs and understand policymakers and others and federal agencies to
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find those small businesses. as we play that role at the federal and state level we focus on things like broadband plan and stimulus investments, but also the long term commitment. the fcc's plan, broadband plan, we called at techamerica for a flexible national strategy that focuses first on the high-capacity networks, on consumer demand so that there is some pull through this network, and what is called middle mile networks making sure you have high capacity capability in a community from which you can branch off to reach other elements of that to extend broadband to every corner of america. once that plan is developed and released we look forward to working with the congress and the administration on implementation. one other area i want to mention quickly, which is techamerica is leading the new group of
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associations and companies to seek a stable a uniform inter carrier compensation so that you can enable networks to move information that is particularly focused on voice-over internet protocol, in other ip based services. joshua larnel can talk about that. let me set way to talk about the appropriations season that we are in. appropriation season often means unintentionally -- provisions that unintentionally limit the ability of government to access the latest and greatest technology. there have only been a few such proposals to date this season, but we continue to watch that front and work with our friends in congress to help them understand often unintended consequences from certain ideas. also looking ahead to the balance of the year legislatively, as lawmakers look at appropriations and look for papers on some of the spends, we
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recognize that some will find some appeal in ending oversees the furl as a way to pay for some of that. our counter to the point is this is the linchpin in american competitiveness, this particular tax provision is critical to our company. we are 5% of the world's population which means 95% of the world market is outside the u.s. and the tax provisions are overseas income, critical to allowing our companies to go overseas and compete and succeed. we do not think it is a good trade to sacrifice long-term jobs for short-term revenue. we will be making that point on the hill. this is a provision our members are wholeheartedly against any restrictions. another tax provision that is on the horizon that has to be addressed is that the research and development tax credit, set to expire at the end of the
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year, this is something that must be done on an annual basis. we will be reminding members of congress that this isn't just about scientists working on something ten years from now. studies show that 70% of the research and development spending actually create real time jobs. we are here to say that you think it is a good idea to encourage research and development in america and create those jobs, or you don't. so we're going to be watching proponents very closely, not just of votes but who's doing the work. not is cosponsoring but doing heavy legislative lifting. those will be the true friends of american innovation in our view. ..
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>> but in this environment, it's been reported melissa hathaway has submitted her resignation, as mischel kwon. i think many in the technology who understand the importance to secure your assets but also to make the media secure and instill confidence that we're frustrated that the appointment has not been made. the president shares that frustration because he personally came to the white house and the 60-day review was completed to promise fast action in that appointment.
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but we really look forward to some process on senator carper's bill to improvement the management act of fisma. we've been engaged in that process and legislation for da da breach notification. we are encaged with the subcommittee chairman rush as well. those will be important things for congress to address at the second half of the year. related on the security front, two of the things, one is pass i.d., the other is -- both related to pass i.d.. real was proposed to ensure that people are who they say to make driver's license more secure. that was the recommendation of the 9/11. pass i.k. -- i.d. is the
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successor. it makes driver's license less than what they might have been otherwise. so wety it's important that you will able to truly validate that somebody is who they say they are. so we will be continuing to work on that. and there's some specific concerns about readable data on the cards that will ask jennifer kerber to address if you have questions there. it is on the horizon again, it's reenergized by schumer and longnecker joining forces to address what we think is broken immigration system. we will continue to work with them to make sure we get secure borders but also be able to bring in the best and brightest around the world. both those are employeed and those who might be. our members also will be working on a related matter what the
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e-verify system. we support employment verification. we've called for changes on @ legislation in this area. we've also sent a letter up to folks expressing our concerns or our need in this area. let me cover just a couple of others real quickly before we open it up. one is on procurement, i mentioned in passing earlier. great interest and guidance is coming out of omb in response to president's march 4th memorandum on government contract. the memo posed a number of good questions. we'll be watching and working with them to make sure they pursue reforms and positive developments around the kinds of contracting and procurement the
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taxpayer can have effect and we don't want to bring hurdles in the way. finally, i would like to note our concern over a couple of other o appointments. again these are both related to the procurement arena. first is the gsa administrator. we have support and have called upon them to immediately upon its return to fill the position of the gsa administrator. two other positions at gso has been given a green light to go ahead and be filled. but we need the administrator. the second position is secretary activity army, the norm knee, and we call on the senate to act on that as soon as possible after their return. this is a rapid and far-reaching
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summary of things that are pending right now. what i'd like to do is turn the gavel over to all of you, and open the floors for any questions. and we'll either defer to the appropriate expert to help us out. all right. let me go right here for the first question. please identify yourself for the camera. >> mr. chapman. you have to built fiber under roads and bridges. what do you want it to go? where do you want it to go? and broadband in the same token. it's thanks to the feds a town of 50,000 halfway across the country, what do you want it to do for that town? >> i'll call on joshua lamel.
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you don't want to work on the opportunity to work on 20th century infrastructure to put down the infrastructure to the 21st century. makes common sense to put it down for all kinds of capabilities, some of which we don't know. there would be municipal needs, government needs, private sector should be able to plug into that as well, you should notify if they want to tear the roads so if they want to put their own their capabilities they can do that. i'll let josh talk more about that. in terms of what the folks would do with the broadband, our first thought is really use these kind of demanding a gators, a hospital, a library, some other public service from which you can brand off with greater speed. let me defer to josh lamel who
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oversees all of our telecom work, was a tech and telecom advisors on the hill for a number of years and leads our committee efforts there. you can just hold it. >> i think there's. got it. it's inside. all right. hold on one more second. there's a couple of things here. i think first the -- the first part of the question is the basic answer why does rural america and small town america need broadband. and you have why do e want it, where is it going? i think there's a lot of reasons. i think first and foremost, to be competitive in the 21st century, for their education system to be competitive, they need broadband.
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we are at a point in terms of when we talk about this broader debate about u.s. competitiveness, if you do not understand and know how to use the services you get because of broadband, you are left behind. and you are not going to be creating a competitive work force, you're not creating competitive work force for 2005 let alone 2015 and 2025. it brings communities -- one of the best examples we see and hear people talk about the importance of enteredband to formers. in terms of the way they can monitor crops, regulate water and fertilizer, it brings huge efficiency, it brings down the cost of producing food. that will bring down the cost of food. that's something that no argument would be a good thing. in terms of how you do this, i
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think one of the reasons we can focus on this concept. the idea of going to a library, going to a community center, a hospital, with these massive middle mile connections and allowing the last mile to be built off that. whether it's through the stimulus or whatever, the fcc is going to do it in the national broadband plan. it is that the -- these institutions, a hospital, a library, these are the key institutions for access. a hospitals you're getting into issues around provision of medical care and the hospital having broadband with the role that doctors can confer with the number one expert. they send it quickly and in real time so he can make a life-saving diagnosis if he or she has the ability to make. there's the perfect example why
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hospitals having a connection is important. libraries, libraries are the place of learning for a lot of people and the community and frankly not everybody wants to spend the money on having a broadband connection in their home, not everybody has a computer, and a library is a place where you can allow those people to go and do those things. schools are fairly obviously why it's important to have these in schools. that's been a long-standing policy back to 2001 and the fcc. so there's a lot of good we can do from that. what you can do, if you have this huge connection, the capacity is not going to get used just by that institution. and what it allows is companies to build wifi connections out to the community for those people who do want to purchase it for their own business. and it allows you to do so in a
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cheaper why while meeting a governmental needs to providing broadband for the institutions. >> let me make, and i'll, let me make one other perhaps morer gent point on that. three years we did a study to show that domestic sources of work in the u.s. is becoming increasingly competitive. so great innovation has been companies outsourcing work to others to do it more efficiency. rural america can do that work. they have the human capabilities. with some training they can do that. but what they need is serious bandwidth. we've seen some governors recognize and market this as places that can compete globally for outsourced work.
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that's one immediate, real, global trend that's going on, employment for rural america. but they need bandwidth. >> other questions in the back. >> you mention cybersecurity, and i know a big challenge that has been identified is involving industry so it's a coordinated attempt to tackle the issue. but at the same time industry is going through terms about liability even anti-trust laws violations given the information sharing requirements. how can that be rectified so we are in a coordinated attempt. as a follow up, you mention dhs's leadership. is that enough to strengthen their leadership? >> i'm going to defer to both liesyl and hodgkins. there is efforts to track policy
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and impact that policy, both new legislation as well as regulation and interaction with the procurement officials. let me just say before i hand it off to liesyl and then to trey that first of all we think the two appointments dhs are two extraordinarily strong players and that can only help in the cause. the need for the white house coordination is something we recognize and call for the in the past, and certainly anxious to get that piece done. i think that some of the challenges you identified concerns about liability and proprietary information only reinforce the argument for more engagement and partnership. you need the best and most cutting edge technology. you do have to engage the private sector, and to understand what the hurdles maybe to getting that into government service.
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with that let me hand it first to liesyl and then to trey. can you reach that? >> no, i think you -- i want to address a couple of challenges that people have talked about with regard to the partnership that is so crucial between industry and government. cybersecurity, no one element can do it on its own. the partnership efforts that has been launch to date indicate that. i think that from the industries perspective, we look at the current environment as a time to make changes that can enable information sharing and partnership in a way that removes those obstacles. we might need to restructure or
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reconstitute what that partnership looks like to enable that kind of interaction. and remove fears of either inadvertent sharing of proprietary information or the threat of liability requirements that would have unintented consequences for the use of products and services. and then really reduce security rather than enable it. to address your second question, as phil pointed out, they have hit the ground running. the issue perhaps with the department is whether or not -- where the support lies. we see that there is some movement on the hill to try and put into statutes some of those
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authorities. and they have not previously been there. we look forward to seeing where that might come out. and again the appointment of cybersecurity coordinator would be important to all the efforts of dhs and other agencies not only for securing themselves as an agency but bringing their resources and capabilities to bear to combat the problem in a coordinated manner. >> realtime, and i can reference where we are partnering or working diligently to try to go around the far counsel's case regarding authentic i.t. products. the last public hearing for that effort will be this thursday. the industry has been working
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with the far council to try to develop a proposal for a way ahead that would allow the government and industry to come toll consensus about how to do this excluding innovation and commercial products that we are not inadvertently cutting off small business access to the market. also providing a degree of assurance. that's the realtime exercise that we're going through now where industry is working with the government to come up with a contract clause. it's not going to -- what we discovered is not an easy task. it's not going to happen overnight, it's not something we will resolve on the public hearing. our proposal will be that we need to identify in a time frame where we can work together and reach a conclusion. but that is a realtime example of trying to work together with the government and the media issue.
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it's the authentic idea case. i can get that case number for you. >> other questions? yes, ma'am. >> the coordinator of the fcc national broadband project has been pretty vocal in saying the record so far committed by industry and other steak holders -- there's no new ideas that are going to help the plan moving forward. do you -- how do you respond to that? do you think we will have some ideas that will really move the ball? >> that certainly -- it's certainly a vocal criticism that's out there right now. and i think industry has taking it to heart, and really going back and looking at what they said. i think part of it from a trade association perspective, you're representing the interest of in
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our case, you know, hundreds of people in industry. so it gets hard to get really down into the details. i think what we try to do in our reply comments is kind of focus on some of the big ideas that people may not be thinking about. things like when you are defining broadband, you don't know how to define speed. people go oh, it's 100 megabits, that's what it is. that's not what it is. it depends on the network, how many of the neighbors, what you're doing, what's going on. it's an art form. it's not a science. don't focus on that. what this is really about is focusing on what you need to do the right thing to do, do what you think is the best, focus on what consumers think. what it's business or individual consumers, focus on what they need and make sure whatever broadband is, it's meeting the needs of the community at
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large. and that's an important thing. we try to save big picture with that. some of the terms of the technical details part of it is no one wants to go out on a ledge and jump and say, you know, this is what you should do. but i think there are some people willing to do that. i think this gets that and maybe also areas around sunshine. to be honest with you, i think there are some people that would love to say some things and make some propoa sals and ideas not on the record that cannot do so because the fcc sunshine laws that would love to have those conversations. this is where we'd like to be, we don't know if we'll be there, but this is where we'd like to be. and the sunshine prevent that, i don't want to way honest dialogue. you don't want to get put on the
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record making promises that technological you don't know if i will be able to keep or not. we've heard, and many people have been going into this really thinking that broadband coordinator and the fcc chairman have really had an idea of what they want to do and this is just collecting a record in order to back up when they want to do. and so i think people have not been investing necessarily because of that belief. people may not be investing that serious amount of time to put together 500-page comments to go in depth. i also people recognize, at least i recognize, the less that these guys have to read thousands of comments. i want to stick to and focus on what i can actually state from authority, and i think that can add value from our organizational perspective.
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i can talk about what we did. we're not going to add value, we're not engineers or scientists. we're not going to add value to this process by talking about in depth specifications that need to happen for l.t.e. in the future. that's for the engineers and scientists. as the trade association, you want to fee focus on the things that we don't want you to forget. and it's important, you know, to have that underlying everything you're doing. >> let me add one quick comment. again, i think one of the things that is betrayed by that kind of observation is that the companies and us as an association and i think the fcc are all funning into the fact that demand matters. that's an inindictment of us, we need to do a better job
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communicating to individuals so they believe it is true. but they understand that bandwidth equals more job opportunities. so there's real demand on the system. that again is returning to something i mentioned before. that's why efforts like that are governor baldacci in maine. people need to understand that they will demand for bandwidth. that's one of the holy grails is how do we incite more demand? frankly, i think we need to do a better job. >> can i add something? that's a good point. look at some of the studies that are out there. even when broadband going into communities, maybe it's in the 70s in certain communities. who are those other 40%. why aren't they losing to purchase? we all know the benefits.
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there's no argument. but why are people choosing not to buy it. why are businesses choosing not to buy it? and there's some fascinating studies. studies that clearly get at, and i think the stimulus bill and what the fcc are going to show that computer is still an issue. if you don't have a computer, you don't need a broadband. but at the same time, in many of those communities they have mobile devices that they can access some technologies like the iphone, palm pre, the blackberry storm are changing. some of the deals that you see, some of the major wireless carriers making that for a contracted price. that is a -- that is revolutionary for helping lower-income communities access
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broadband. because the purchase of a computer was often an inpedment to that. the ability to get a new netbook that enables them to do everything they need to do for $99 or for free. it probably will be within six months to a year. it's phenomenal, it's a game changer. we talked about the digital device for how many years. that is a game changer. the other thing when you look at the demand issues, we talked about this in our comments on the fcc is the disabled community. broadband has been a revolutionary technology, especially wireless for the disabled community to be able to communicate with people. for the deaf and hearing impaired, the benefits have been immense. i think any of you, if you go, i encourage everybody to go spend an hour at the new york avenue
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metro station, just watching. see the amount of communicating that's going on that previously couldn't go on because of some mobile device in their hand and how they are able to interact. this has been revolutionary for that community and their ability to communicate. but not everybody knows that, not everybody understands that. we need to be a better job of educating that older generation. we need to be a better job of showing the blind community of the benefits that broadband can bring to them. they can't see all the things they can do that they otherwise thought they couldn't do. we need to do a better job of educating the over 65 community about the benefits. i always joke get a telegram --
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just by getting an e-mail you could get every grandma signed up within an hour. there's got to be a better education. not just the benefits, but why it's a good investment. why it's a good investment and economically makes sense for them to shell out the $29, $30, $50, a month to purchase this service. we talk about why it's good. but we don't talk about at the end of the day why it's worth them spending that kind of money. and it is worth them spending that kind of money. and we need to do a better job of educating them on that. >> let's go back here. >> david with congress daily. you talk about the proposals. what are the pro pal -- proposals that are out there? what are some of the major company that is are concerned
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about this somebody >> i'm going to hand it off to bartlett who is our senior tech counsel here. i will say that any company that is driving revenue overseas will have an interest. as i referenced earlier, 5% of the world market is increasingly that includes the smallest of companies from the very smart-upphase who are trying to reach and monetize markets. bartlett, let me give it to you to give an update on where this stands. >> thanks, phil. and i knew we'd finally get to the good part of the program. thanks, everybody. all right. so i'll go in reverse order. i think one of the main points to take away is that the interest in deferral, keeping
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the tax system as it is is veryd . :
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>> we find that whole approach to be frankly dangerous. i think the key point to understand about the current tax system, and i see this report sometime and it is reported erroneously, this is not a way to advantage our companies. this is a way to level the playing field for our companies. if you take away this deferral portion, you basically are putting our companies on a lesser putting down the forum rivals. and as we although there are plenty of companies around the
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world directly competing with our industry. >> i think there's another important point here to make. i think first of all what you are hearing from many congressional leadership is we want to talk about this in the contacts of a broader tax reform package in 2000. and be open and welcome that discussion that as there are lots of issues with our corporate tax cut right now that i think most of our small, medium and large businesses want to look at. another point and it gets on a broader issue which is the location isn't what it used to be. it used to be location, location, location. for a company to decide where they need to be located, because of changes in who their market is, it's less and less important everyday for companies to choose to be located in the united states. and it is less of that location becomes less and less of a factor in their decision making. and so issues like the tax code
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get into broader issues of general competitiveness in the united states. the u.s. passcode in 1970 and especially the corporate tax existed in a bubble and you could kind of put a bubble around the united states doing certain things for business within the united states. but basically in the tax code exists in this bubble in the united states. it does not exist in that bubble anymore. when a country like ireland, and i know there is some controversy around ireland, but when a country like ireland chooses to make a decision to promote and invest a in technology especially, with a strong r&d provisions, strong corporate tax provisions, and they have the education system in the workforce to back it up, it becomes very easy for a company to say i'm better off being in ireland than being in the united states. and for my bottom line if you're a public traded company,
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especially for what you're doing as a ceo with that company, there's going to be tons of pressure on you to do so from the market, from your investors. if you are a small company, for your large-company on the market. there will be tons of pressure on you to do so. because location becomes less -- and it will continue to become less important everyday. every day passes that were your company is located will become less and less important. >> let me just say something, the impetus for we are in the middle of doing a survey and will have data on this, but i contagious and talking to folks in from the early data that i have looked at. the number one ended as for why an organization in the company, small, large, public, private, whatever, will send folks out of this country, while they will set up other locations, the number one virtually only reason why, but the number one reason why is for sales. it goes back to what phil said
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is that make it easy, right, if you are selling pizza, you can't deliver in a neighborhood if you don't have a location in that neighborhood for which you deliver a hot, fast speeds. it's not that much different. folks need technical support and help your tv to be on the ground to provide technical support and help, and sales. do all of your sales. send e-mails to folks are going to go around the world to sell. that idea, that kind of business approach is the number one reason that they will certainly locate internationally. so i would say what josh added, the people leading to set up any kind of facility elsewhere is often simply sales which drives revenue back to the united states of course. creating more jobs, but in addition they already now have a location elsewhere and so it even easier to be flexible when it might be the world.
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>> who is behind these proposals? is at the obama administration? are there folks on the hill? can you be specific about either members of congress or particular agencies? >> obama put this in his budget, that he proposed to congress which kind of started the firestorm of everybody reacting. there has not been a push from congress yet on doing this, but behind the scenes when you talk to people in congress, when you talk to staff, they have talked about it and have heard some staff talk about and there is no specific to any member in congress because of that member of congress isn't out there on us yet. but on using this potentially as a pay for, it was announced through us by members on the hill that this potentially could be used as a pay for in health care package. that has since been promised to us that would not be done. i think you have seen the senate finance committee, certainly in
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chairman bachus talk about this more in the context of a broader debate we're going to have to have in 2000 around the tax code in general. so i think that it certainly will do with it senate leadership has been on this. the house side has been fairly quiet on what their plans are around this. >> anything you want to add to that? >> all set. >> let me wrap up before i promise to come up here and go here. in terms of kind of global options that companies have today. i just want to underscore, we are techamerica. we are committed to the notion of america being as hospitable to the technology of leading companies as possible. in fact, kind of our stated goal that we want america to be the innovation headquarters, and america has distinct advantages. not only the biggest market but the higher education system
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continues as the indeed of the world. we have a melting pot population which gives rise to an innovation culture. those are all huge advantages, but to the extent we explicitly disadvantage our companies through the tax code, it doesn't like them to look at other places where we are committed to the notion that we have real advantages here. here and then we will move over to. >> can you verify, a lot of concerns that gives a false reasons too often. >> let me defer to jennifer who is really our expert on that system and other identity management systems. >> on i think you're right that we do have concerns, that it does allow for identity fraud to get through the system. and it is not doing enough to actually authenticate the person presented the information. for the job. we support an on line workable
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employment verification system. it should be patient with the way technology is now we are able to do it on my. we should no longer be asking your h.r. representative in a company to be a document authentication extra. there are plenty of ways to authenticate documents. there are ways on line. and so if we truly create a system that we are going to use for employment verification that employers can feel sure the information they are getting is correct, that they are complying with the law is correct, it's going to create a live efficiencies in this system. we have concerns with the scalability of the system. we have concerns that right now i could bring you someone else's document and be employed, whether that is me or not. we have concerns. there is some liability issues in the. we are liable for our subcontractors, and you know, we don't always know what level of assurance we should have with our subcontractors are actually using the system. i think we also have some
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concerns as you said with the error rate. i think right now they say it's a 3% error rate, which is absolutely much better than it was. but 3% to a small company is devastating. especially when you have to bid somebody and you can order the government contracted as you just somebody trying to figure out who is eligible to work with the system has maybe returned a false negative, or they are having to go work through the social security administration and dhs to try and clarify their information. so i think if the system were phased in, i think there is a lot of stuff that can be done to improve the system. and we would support it. i think it needs a little more investment on the system. i think what is happening with what you're saying with e-verify, for biometrics, social security card, what we're seeing with pass i.d. and real i.d., if we are struggling to figure out how you authenticate and verify a person's identity. right now there is no -- we have no trust a form of identification in this country. and there are many ways a candidate. there are many technologies that can be employed.
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it can be done to ensure privacy and security of the system. but i would argue by now that we are on the verge of identity crisis, and the identity issue is central to everything we're doing right now. it is central to national security. e-verify, cybersecurity, immigration, all of these. and so i think until we really sit down and resolve this issue, we are going to continue to have these same questions. how do you get a license and make sure the person is who they are? how to make sure the social security card is a legitimately issued social security card for that person? is this person really eligible to work. the are all issues. and i think on cybersecurity as well. a perfect example is the homeland security residential directive 12, you saw when department of defense started to use it for physical and logical access actually accessing the computer, trey, you might remember what the actual figure was, over 70% drop in attempted hackings to the system. and all it is by using a secure
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credential to get onto a system and make sure that you are only accessing what you are supposed to access. so again i think this identity plays a major area and i think all the proposals we see on the hill, pass i.d., e-verify, some of the e-health stuff, the social security card is all trying to get to that fundamental issue of where is the secure credential and a secure identity. >> i was going to ask a question about cybersecurity. just follow up on one thing. you mentioned earlier about pass i.d. you had some concerns or problems. can you expand on where you are with that? the bill that cleared, you know, what are your feelings on the amendment? >> we do have some concerns with the bill that is actually weakening the verification standards to a pre-9/11 double. i think you saw that some of the issues around verification and validation are actually weaker.
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so we are not always authenticating all the documents that are being presented to prove your identity, and then we are not verifying that i am the actual owner of those documents. so i think one example, there's a great youtube video of a guy who goes into a virginia dmv and he gets for licenses on the same day, same deity, and he uses documents and changes his name every time. but the fourth time he actually spray-painted a unibrow on his face and went in and they gave him the license. and the thing is that's because they were able to authenticate the doctor was being presented, the social security number, the birth certificate, however. but they were able to tie him that that was really his documents being issued. so in this bill we move away from that. we roll back some of the verification and validation procedures. we also take the state to state the verification to a pilot program. so it's no longer mandatory to ensure when driver, one license. so i think some of that, those
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issues we have concerns with. there was great stuff done in that built about, find the privacy provisions. and the other concern that we are still looking to fix is the restrictions being put on the use of the machine readable zone on the back of a drivers license license. a lot of companies use that for fraud prevention. so those are some of the areas we are working on. and we look forward to working with both the senate and house on that legislation. >> over the last year, a lot of the bills have come from committees related to energy, commerce, homeland security. does that kind of approach benefit the companies you represent? is that negative? are using any kind of development in a certain type of committee? or one committee that is really taking a lead on this? did you see any movement in that because it seems like it is coming from all directions. cybersecurity is all over. any comments?
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>> i will offer a quick comment and then see what liesyl would have to add. i guess my reaction, and in part because the fact that like many people in this town, i worked on the hill for a number of years. so my reaction to that is that it is inevitable. cybersecurity does have multiple facets to it. it does have implications for commercial use as well as just pure security concerns of information systems and networks. and so it is inevitable that committees will look at this and that ultimately that means better legislation because it represents the different views. let me defer to somebody who tracks this on a day-to-day basis and is much more of an expert that i am. liesyl. >> i think you both touched upon the core issue, which is that cybersecurity is broad reaching and touches sort of every aspect of our lives, whether it be
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commerce, government services, or individual use. and so as bill noted it is not surprising, a positive thing that there are, there is an increased awareness of the issues that we are grappling with in cybersecurity. and that more and more people are getting involved and trying to find ways to improve it. having said that, with a, you know, while i think the increased awareness and increased interest and increased need to do something allows for a proliferation of bills that we have seen. i would hope that as they progress, they progress toward a coalesced solution. except in cases where there is very specific, very specific need that can be addressed in one particular area.
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one might be the critical infrastructure, electric infrastructure protection bills that were put out by both the senate and the house. it's a very specific perspective and need that is being addressed. if you are looking at something more of an ominous bill, for example, then we will need to go with your colleagues with other areas to make sure that all the perspectives are brought to bear in the discussion, at the very earliest stage so that a positive approach can be pursued. you know, much like we think that a cyber court nader in the white house will help ring together and coalesced some of the solutions, i think you will need to see that kind of collaboration in the congress as well to move something forward that is positive. >> is an omnibus bill something that you, i mean you see as a good idea? is omnibus cybersecurity something positive?
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>> i think that because there are so many aspects it would take a long time to put something together that would addressed each of the aspects of cybersecurity in a positive way. so actually looking at it in a more targeted approach, for example, senator carper's fisma bill for fisma or congressman rush's bill to address security in data breach. those are specific means that can be addressed in a cohesive way, more forward than try to touch everything and be anything to all people. to the extent that anything might coalescent or broader bill down the road, if it's all positive and well-vetted and will work along the process and with the right amount of collaboration, i would be positive as well. >> that's not one of the other i don't think. >> we are about out of time.
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so take a last question. >> you didn't address this in your opening remarks but i saw in your letters you included a letter that your organization recently sent to the senate committee. and you were talking about the need for incentives and stuff. the congress already gave quite a bit of incentives in the recovery act. and there has been a lot of talk about needing doctors and hospitals to get sort of up-to-date and everything. but i think from the doctors and hospitals perspective they are saying what is out there is not any good. i mean, they are being promised all of these wonderful things that they can do and they look at the products, and they don't do it. so is the industry -- what is the industry doing to come together and actually make their products actually beat interoperable and be able to be starting to do some of these things they were promised? >> i will do some preliminary comments and then let bartlet to other comets. at the very end of your question
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in regards to health care, you said the keyword at least my perspective, which is the interoperability concerns. that is really what it is about. of course, funding and efforts around standardization, in that arena which are going to be critical to unlocking the great capability here. i would say equally as important or close to it would be the emphasis on training to make sure people understand what the real capabilities of some of the programs and other technologies are available. and then of course digitization to make sure that you have got things going from paper to digits so you can move them more speedily. but bartlett, let me ask you to comment further on the letters and other things that techamerica has done on behalf of its members in this area. >> i would be happy to address the latter directly but it sounds like the question was thrust to the letter.
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so to the interoperability point, so one of our key positions, and phil underscored this already, interoperability is absolutely critical. your frame up of the frustration of the doctors and health care industry is exactly the correct historical perspective. part of the perspectives that gave rise to the skin is money, right. and one of the thrust of the stimulus money is to get in some cases liquidity, money out there into health care system, doctors, hospitals, etc., to be able to adopt technologies, especially if we move, we suddenly have a complete electronic health care records system. you would need everyone to have someone interacting as opposed to paper copies. in some cases you will need money in some cases you're going to need worker interoperability. one of the key points of our work and one of our key talking
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points and part of the reason this money was made available is so systems can be designed to interoperate, education and training is a key part. and that is a lot of the interoperability does, people have to know how to make it interoperate because that's always going to take some human element to get records transferred from one place to another regardless. that said, i think the industry, and this is just going to be speaking to individual members as opposed to giving you any kind of empirical evidence. i think the message is heard. i don't think it's a surprise that we find that as new systems develop, that systems develop in parts of a country. i would say this is true of health care as well. we start historically with individual hospitals and individual health caregivers. hospitals aggregate doctors into a networking, you know, 20, 30, 40 years ago you started seeing physical buildings.
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you know longer -- in fact, i went to the doctors office the other day and i don't go to a doctors office anymore. i go to a hospital complex that includes a pharmacy and a gym and all kinds of health related kind of activities going on at one physical establishment. the same thing will happen in it and it is happening. so while i do appreciate, it's a little bit of a softball. that is exactly the historical perspective. the current activities are all aligned to get around the. by last point would be onc. this is exactly why they are taking the time to make sure the definitions, this is a little bit archaic, but the definition of all the meaningful use. we need to give those kind of definitions right in our comments here do know that we address interoperability as a suggestion to hhs. not only product to product, but product to government rules. so in other words, they do not allocate money for systems that
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aren't already designed to be able to work with current or soon-to-be coming changes in regulation. >> i hope that is responsive to your question. if any of you have any of the follow-up questions feel free to contact charlie and we will take any other questions that may occur to you later. with that let me thank you all for your time coming by today. and let us know how we can help you in the future. thank you very much. [inaudible conversations]
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>> how is c-span funded? >> the u.s. government. >> benefactors. >> i don't know. i think some of it is government raised. >> it's not public. >> probably donations. >> i want to say from me, my tax dollars. >> how is c-span funded? america's cable companies created c-span as a public service. a private business initiative. no government mandate, no government money. >> now to a discussion on wartime contracting oversight. part of a congressional commission hearing looking at contracting in iraq and afghanistan. we hear from officials at contractors dyncorp and kbr. or kellogg brown and root. this is about two and a half hours.
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>> oversteering back to order and to say that before we start the second panel, mr. parsons rightfully reminded me that i had said that any one of the panelists who wanted to make kind of a closing statement to correct records or just to emphasize a point would have that opportunity. so mr. parsons, i'm very grateful that you reminded me of that and so we will start with you. is there anything you would like to put on the record before we go to the next panel? >> yesterday are a couple of things. first of all, and just reflecting back on the morning here where there appear to be quite a bit of division between the panel members. i would like us to walk away feeling that we really do want to work together and look at the future and how we make improvements. and i am committed and continue to follow through with april
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with me in her and meet with the dcaa to talk about these important issues, not only the contractor business systems, but also with a task orders under logcap iv. i can tell you that mr. laurel, who is my director of contracts out of rock island, contracting center has met and has discussed these business system issues with his counterpart in each of the companies. is the intent of myself and mr. harrington, who's the deputy deputy assistant secretary of army procurement to meet with each of these contractors to discuss the importance of these business systems. so i want to assure you that the army senior leader ship is committed to working these hard issues. and i think as mr. shea said these are complex business systems. and i knew a couple of folks that shouldn't be rocket science but the truth of the matter is there is complex issues. i think there is work to make us better for the future. i do want to emphasize on the
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task force. we had to make a decision come may, june timeframe to get those task orders awarded. we look at what the additional delay might entail if we asked dcaa go in and do some detailed audits on those cost proposals and came up to the conclusion that any further delay on getting those task orders awarded in the timeframe that we did was not going to meet the operational needs of the army. that gets to mr. green sport. the contracting officer has to make this trade off to meet the operational needs of the war fighter and at the same time having to care about protecting taxpayers interest. a decision was made to go ahead and award those task orders under afghanistan. however, we have agreed and we are working with dcaa to go in and do post audit reviews on the cost baselines that were proposed by each of these contractors. so we will get some detailed cost information out of the contractors and have supported those proposals that they sedated and we'll asked dcaa to


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