tv U.S. House of Representatives CSPAN July 26, 2010 12:00pm-5:00pm EDT
he thought he took care of that. he introduced legislation like the community choice act. the medicaid policy for all these years that says you can get what you need, you have to go to our place to get it, that failed policy has stolen many -- millions of lives. now we have the choice act, and until that past, every state still struggling with the fact that congress has mandated that which they do not really want any more, which the department
of justice is saying not so much now, you can move on. and they are struggling with failing budgets for home and community-based services that are "optional services," and they are undermining their own principles, their own agenda, their own policies, cutting that which we need to stay in the community to transition people out of those homes. so we really need the actual lot to pass up that says now is a mandate to go get what they need where they want to be. i tried to still be it -- to simplify things. in my work directly -- well, i will tell you about my mom because i think she is watching. my mother is in short, unlike her colleagues and friends, the issue will never go to a nursing facility. she knows this because others are lining up and putting in their bid so she can come live
with the kids. one of my children will get an act of congress so i do not have to go to a nursing home. [laughter] so come on, already. there is a variety of advocates in the immunity that said the money follows the person grants. no more excuses grant. it is lush and wonderful. when i heard it was in an earlier version of mi casa, i said is another one. medicaid, attended services, and support was added in. i doubt it was implied, but it was an explicit, now it is there. now we have state support. this is what every state will want to do because it will fund almost their entire system of freedom and transition and options. not every state went for it. maryland is one of the states that went for it and is now very grateful, and a huge segment of
its operation is now 100% federally funded. now that seems to look like on paper that all means all, finally. the community first option is still just an option, and people will wait. it is still an option. it is not the same as being told when somebody needs this, they have to be provided that kind of institution. it is not the same. it is an option. it has incentives. so my clients range in age from 20-something to 80 or more. and i have a grass-roots group. i hope some of them are watching, the sunshine folks, and many of whom are nursing facilities survivors themselves. they have a passion for this. they want to find other people who had no idea. one of my volunteers said that
she met a person that was 84 who got stuck -- she had her hip surgery in got better but never got out again. she cannot get what she needed in the community. she cannot get the services she needed. so she told her, well, there these community waivers now, which are may be suffering cutbacks, but you have an entitlement to because of maryland law, the grass roots in the maryland law center may happen. since you have an entitlement to it, it is an earlier decision. she said, i do not think i know anyone who is 84 that is not in a nursing facility. but if i could get help, my son would be delighted if i moved into them. it is not always an accurate perception, but in this case, it was. in some cases, the sun will say he is delighted, but it will not happen. but in this case, it was. and i have young people who were shocked to find out, not just that i would significant
disabilities, who avoided going into a state institution just because i had a sense of humor. seriously. that is how i escaped. my father did not have the heart for it. i was a toddler. he tell my sister, as long as she is laughing and she makes us laugh, then we will keep her home. we know she will not live very long, but we're keeping her home as long as she is laughing. that is how my sister understood it. she was a little kid. she said, it looks like maybe she is going to keep laughing. i do not think she will die. but now you need to teach her everything you learned in kindergarten because she needs that because we're not sure exactly what we are going to do for her education. i am either as old as i look or older prior to the iaea, prior to the indication of disabled children, prior to section 504 of the real guttation act. long before the american disabilities act. i was out of school.
and it was a profound struggle every single year. now i am facing individuals who may be major little young girl or a little older who say, what the mean where do i want work and my transition plans? what are you talking about? i said, why not? what would you like to do? do you want to go fishing? you want to volunteer? you want to work for me? what do you want to do? so this gap that we're still struggling with, this failed medicaid policy that is still in so many lives, and i feel like we have an amazing ally both in the congress and in this department of justice. it has just been tremendous. >> thank you. [applause] listening to her, two things come to mind. one, she mentioned the waiver programs and things we have in different states.
one thing we put into the community first choice option is this, that if estate takes up this option, they must cover everyone. no longer can they segregate one group as they do now. some people are eligible, and some are not, depending upon your disability. so they have to cover everyone. and that requirement is in there. secondly, i mentioned this starts in october 2011. some might charge, i spoke to some degree celebrations this weekend in my state of iowa, and i insist now under the first choice option, which covers everybody, cannot segregate people of any longer, my challenge to all the disability groups is organized, organize, organize between now and 2011 in all these states to get the state legislatures to move the legislation and get the
governor's to move it to adopt the first choice option, so they get that 6% bump up. they get that money follows the person. my challenge to you is to adapt and between now and october 2011, make sure those state legislators and those governors out there pick up on this and implement it. so one more round of organizing that we have to do. christine griffin. federal agencies are hiring people with disabilities. you're the deputy director at opm. what is opm doing with other federal agencies to make sure we have accessibility, reasonable accommodations, and things like that? >> we are actually doing a lot. about 90% of the people i want to thank in this room and you for all the leadership and education i have received. i am are in that post-ada wave
of advocates. i am beneficiary of the law as all of you have been. so thank you. as a result of that, this is how i ended up deputy director at opm. which is a good thing. i'd love employment. i am big advocate for the employment of people with disabilities. i think we will really change the world. i believe that. we have done a number of things in collaboration with the office of disability employment policy. we felt the first-ever disability-only job fair -- we held at the first-ever disability-only job there. we created a really good website at opm. we get really get information. we have access to information for human resources folks at the federal agencies as well as applicants. we have developed online
training speaker we have a fabulous tool that we can use to get people with disabilities into the federal government in a non-competitive way. yet, we do not use it very well. people keep saying they do not know what it really is. what does it do? well, we did a training. it takes five minutes online. simple, easy. it cannot be more simple. we have one of the best accommodations to the system in the world are in this federal government. we have something called computer electronic accommodations program. it is run out of the department of defense. back in the late 1990's, congress saw that it should be extended from dod two other federal agencies it has. and it is amazing. a woman named diana cohen run as it. a general is now in charge of it. it is an amazing tool. i hope that it will be expanded as we hire more people with disabilities. we started a government wide diversity initiatives at opf. and the people who do not know
this, and that the most people there, but when we talk about diversity, it includes people with disabilities. we are part of the diverse fabric of this nation. and people need, especially diversity professionals, need to make sure they know that. they say it, and they live in it. we have created that diversity office, the first ever at opm. i guarantee that the person that will have doubled the in the senior executive service, and they will no disability laws and be able to advocate for us as well as the rebels. and i think the bottom line is what we are trying to do at opm with other federal agencies is to take away every excuse federal agencies have had about not hiring people with disabilities. >> thank you. thank you. [applause] >> little by little. [applause] and i would just add that over the next couple of days, we are going to see a couple historic,
major things happen that will increase employment for people with disabilities in the federal government, so stay tuned. thank you. [applause] >> that is wonderful. thank you, christine. thank you, thank you, thank you. that brings me to catch the martinez now -- kathy martinez. we have heard from christine and we're going to make more progress in the federal government. one thing that has bothered me is the federal government spends a lot of taxpayer dollars in contracts with private entities. what can we do to make sure those private entities that are using taxpayers' dollars from the defense industry to everything else to make sure that they are proactive, that they follow the guidelines, that they are hiring people with disabilities? what can we do to further that in the private sector when they are taking taxpayer dollars?
>> what a great question you ask. >> bring the microphone in. >> ok. can you all hear me now? i can hear myself really well. [laughter] anyway, i wanted to thank senator harkin for bringing this panel together and to say it is an honor to walk in the footsteps or the wheel tracks, in many cases, of those who lead this effort to pass the ada and the ada amendments act, and to know what the catalyst it has been, both for future laws in this country but for folks around the world, as is indicated by the u.n. convention on the rights of folks with disabilities. i will answer the question, but i want to say that it is important to understand the disability is an international issue, and the world takes it
very seriously the reason why is because of our leadership. so senator harkin, as no, president obama made a commitment to strengthening the affirmative action provisions of section 503 of the real page -- rehabilitation act of 1933 which requires federal contractors and subcontractors not only to refrain from discriminating against folks with disabilities, but also to take affirmative action to recruit, hire, retain, and promote in employment folks with disabilities. the regulatory agenda published last december, we look at section 503, the implementing regulations, to see if they could better reflect effective affirmative action practices for the employment of folks with
disabilities. i am happy to report that on july 23, the department of labor's office of federal contract compliance programs issued an advance notice of proposed rulemaking. so that people with disabilities, employ years, and other stakeholders can submit comments and suggestions on modernizing the section 503 regulation. this is a vital step in a strengthening and enforcing the affirmative action provisions on section 503. and i strongly encourage everyone's comments. please note that -- know that odep will be doing some educational seminars. because it is kind of a complicated issue.
but our goal is to the disability on the par with the gender and race in this area. [applause] we have too long dealt with affirmative promises and reassurances and assurances on everything but action. for those of you who probably know this, i will reiterate the 22% of our work force in the country is hired by federal contractors or subcontractors. so if we are on the par with the gender and race, that will mean such a change in employment for folks with disabilities. it will mean a change in the whole concept of an inclusive work places, of what we have to do to make technology accessible.
if we do this right, writing these regulations will have such an impact on the employment of folks with disabilities. so i am very proud to say that we're heading in the right direction with section 503. thank you very much. >> thank you. [applause] thank you very much. again, i say to all of you in those who may be watching and listening, so the department put out an advanced notice of proposed rulemaking. it is open for comment, which means, i hope, that all of you will look at that and if you represent different groups, look at that and get your comments in. how many days do we have? is it 60 or 90 days? >> i need a lawyer. [laughter] i think it is 60 days. >> i think it is 60 days.
so please, your views in on this. it is vitally important for modifying and strengthening section 503. renee --before we open it up to the audience here. again, one of the things that, as you know, she's our assistant secretary, rsa, rehabilitate the services association commissioner. one of the things that i see that we have a stumbling block here, and that is we're getting kids mainstream in school. we have struggled to make sure with kids with disabilities get every advantage in opportunity in schools. but then when they finish, they have to go to the workplace, that transition. that transition is a very tough. talk to us about transitioning from being a student to entering the work force.
>> well, that is a great question. and again, as everyone else has said, this is just such an honor to be here, having a chance to be on the c-span. my husband is watching. i cannot believe i am doing this. but to have this chance to be able to talk about what we are really doing as we look at having this amazing piece of legislation. we have all these folks who are committed to making opportunities happened. but for kids who are transitioning from high-school now, they have never known the world before the ada. so they come to schools every day. there in the community. they're hanging around with their friends. they had a very different experience than i did. they have a very different experience than many people who crafted this lot. at the same time, they have the siege expectations. they see themselves as being
able to run businesses. they see themselves as being able to be employed. sometimes they see themselves as not being employed. they are looking at the world as a way that they are going to be able to achieve independence. they're going to be able to have self-sufficiency, and they do not even consider that there are going to be barriers to even be able to do that. but when they finish school, many times, even when they have gone on to college, they do not have practical experiences. they do not have internships. they have not had work experience. there has not been an expectation that they were going to be involved in work study programs. so when they complete their academic training, they are not prepared to go on to employment unless they have had those. so one of the things that we're doing in the public vocational
rehabilitation program and with our partners is to be able to say, let's make sure that kids who transitioning from high school start when they are in grade school. thinking about what they are going to be. that they have career exploration is that really challenges all of us to see their potential. and that we spend the time while they're in high school and when they go on to further education that that is part of where they are going to be. and we expect that the end result is that they are going to be a book to maximize their potential. that we assure that they have those work experiences, those internships, those opportunities. and then when they are available, that we have employers who are saying, i want kids with disabilities to be part of a summer work experience program that is funded by the department of labor under the work force investment back. i want to have interns in my
office, whether that is here in congress or in federal agencies are out in the private sector. i want to make sure that students with disabilities have the chance to participate in programs like project search, which really has the bases in figuring out what business is need to know about hiring kids with disabilities, how we give them exposure to that when they're still in high school, so it is just like an experience we recently had in virginia with a hospital. they had project search in the past academic year, and when those kids graduated, the hospital said, we expect you to come back as employees. that is what we need for kids with disabilities to have us a promise of education. they also have to have a promise of the job. thank you. [applause] >> wow. [applause]
>> i want to keep this panel together. this is the expertise and knowledge base that we need to make sure that we continue on and that we expand and the promises of the ada in all its aspects, but to make sure we do not backslide. and to make sure that that supreme court also knows what we intend to do. but i think the department of justice. sam, i am aware of what you're doing down there, and thank you for really now focusing in this area of enforcing the homestead decision. i thank you so much for that. my other partners in the government, i thank you also for all that you're doing you'reopm, rsa. this is just a great effort. with that, i want to take some time, and a promised people that i've would try to open it up for some questions from the audience
or statements. try not to go too long, perhaps, and your questions or statements. do we have a roving microphone or anything like that? >> yes. >> there it is. >> hello. yes with the chair of the hearing access program and the mother of the 16-year-old daughter with hearing loss. i would like to know -- the ada is amazing. i cannot thank everyone for their involvement. but there are gaps. the areas are programmatic access for people with hearing loss. when you have the ada, it's jealousy we need a counter 36 inches, but there is no specificities for people with hearing loss. some museums and theaters around this country are not offering access. we have the smithsonian, our nation's jewel, and it is not
accessible for people with hearing loss. they may but in videos that have captioning, but children below nine years old cannot read captioning. so we talk about education, and part of the on-site education is going on field trips. >> are you telling me the smithsonian does not have looked systems? >> nope. i e-mailed them for three years. i reread with the department national park service, guidelines on programmatic access that were released last september. i sent those guidelines to the smithsonian say, you know what, the department of interior national park service did a fabulous job. fabulous government work. let's use these guidelines for the smithsonian. in national parks basically museum. no answer. send them to the pentagon when they refused originally to make the u.s. air force museum accessible, and they said no.
. i sent it to omb. how do we get the same guidelines. why are we reinventing the wheel? it is a list of government money. let's take these guidelines that work and let every federal branch of the government adopt them and give the meat to the bones of the ada. i ask for help. [applause] >> i appreciate that. andy? >> maybe it is safer for me to comment fork -- first since it cannot run any enforcement agencies. i want to say thank you for your comment and your passion and what i would say is what you just raised is a political issue as much as it is a legal issue. these things happen to our community because we do not have the political power to force them not to happened yet. i think one of the it seems we've heard from pat in the prior panel was the we're not
done yet. you're talking about trying to get that floor that pat talked about to be level. even if we succeed with everything you're saying, we will still experience discrimination on hearing loss and other disabilities from my perspective, yes, we have some work to do to get the basic requirements and forced for our own government. i had a congressional office asked me last year when i was trying to place a deaf entering, but with a deaf person do in a congressional office? that is the level of an ignorance we get from our own government sometimes. but what i want to say is to take your passion is organized around it. make sure you have a big lift your working with to change that. >> i have worked 16 museums and theaters around the world. >> that is so important. what you're doing to organize is more important than fixing the issue. fixing the issue is critical, but the organizing is the stuff we need to do. that is how we will accomplish
the agenda. >> i have done that. i have worked with all the national organizations for people with hearing loss. i work across disability. i have done all of that. that is how the national service guidelines came. the issue is the federal government, getting the federal government not to keep reinventing the wheel and to adopt it. it is already written. they are great. >> let me just say, not that we are a town hall meeting with president obama here right now, but you know you notice when things get mentioned at a town hall meeting that he has things that happen. just the fact that you raised it at this event that senator harkin has set up i think is going to help with the smithsonian. from my lips to the smithsonian years. i get it. but i also want to take your point to a broader poihnt. i remember when we were working on the ada and legislative
history, we had conversations about museum is being made accessible to people with hearing loss and people were blind. if people think, if you're blind, how can you possibly enjoy the museum? hello, there are lots of things to do. i think you raising yet here is important. but number two, as someone who for 20 years was outside the government as an advocate, working and developing ada, etc., and now someone inside the government as a commissioner, i will tell you, change -- >> we believe the last few minutes of this program. it is available online anytime at the c-span.org video library. we will go live to capitol hill as the u.s. house is convening for general speeches. this is like house coverage on c-span. the clerk: the speaker's rooms, washington, d.c. july 26, 2010.
i hereby appoint the honorable laura richardson to act as speaker pro tempore on this day. signed, nancy pelosi, speaker of the house of representatives. the speaker pro tempore: pursuant to the order of the house of january 6, 2009, the chair will now recognize members from lists submitted by the majority and minority leaders for morning hour debate. pursuant to clause 12-a of rule 1, the chair declares the house in recess until 2:00 p.m. today.
support, but most especially in the u.s. congress to work with us to get this bill fully funded, and let's get people back on those of buses and back into the community. >> thank you very, very much. [applause] >> that just raised a good point i want to mention. look, have been involved in disability rights issues for most of my adult life. but there are so many things i do not know. there are things that pop up all the time and i think, why did i not know that? so i rely upon people like you to come to us. to let us know that we have to fix this, change that, modified this. i just really implore all of you to make sure that we get that kind of input. do not just assume old harkin knows this. i know a lot but not everything.
so i need the help from people like you to feed that information to me and to my staff. somebody else. >> i used to be active with adapt, and we worked for -- i worked for them 15 years plus in getting community choice act -- before that, it was mi casa. before that, it was casa. it was really a hard. being arrested in things we did not want to do, being in the cold, etc. so we had a chance. i would rather be in prison than to die in a nursing home. can you tell me, for legislative aspect and from the grass roots. of view, what can we do to finally pass the community choice act and get people out of
nursing homes, live on their own, give them the freedom that they want, that they deserve, that is their right? >> well, from the legislative standpoint, after almost 16 years of trying to pass the community first choice act, which is mi casa, i just kept running into a brick wall because of the cbo -estimates on the cost. we just never get over that hurdle. so i took the opportunity, as being involved in the health care reform bill, and because of the death of senator kennedy, i took over the chairmanship of the health committee, so i wanted to make sure that we at least got a community first choice option in there. we have i think $5 billion for that. billions for the money
follows the person. but we do have that in there as an option for states. it is not a mandate, but if the states do -- if the states, beginning next october, implement the homestead decision without any segregation, without any distinction among disabilities, then they get a 60 senators to -- a 6% boost. i am repeating what i said earlier. >> with no time limits. this is a permanent part of medicaid. >> yes, this is a permanent wall. so this goes on and on and on. so hopefully -- as i said earlier, i repeat again, i am hopeful that all the disability groups are around the country and will start to organize to get their state legislators and governors to pick up on this. beginning next october.
not this year and next october, to take advantage of it. so maybe it is a way of getting the community first choice act without actually passing the community first choice act. i wish i could have gotten it done. but i cannot get it. >> i happen and to know you have a lot of family members who live in iowa, and some of them are very strong supporters of the center. and it is wise -- what has happened is incrementally. initially the money follows the person, a grant, or a part of the mi casa legislation. the committee's choice act was sort of lifted and put into health reform. and incrementally. but you're absolutely right to actually eliminate, to make most integrated settings a reality. at some point -- i do not know
anyone who plans to go to a nursing facility. i do not know anyone -- thank you so much for having me here with all these heroes of the ada. because here we are, they have worked so hard. not for the least restrictive setting, a term we hear a lot, but for the most integrated setting. you do not have to go in to get out, and the money follows the person is shifting, is giving the states no more excuses to make people go in. they cannot redesign their own program. when will it be the law that if you need this, you do not have to go there to get it, it comes to you? when will community choice act finally pass? when your family in iowa, in missouri, everyone across the country says, enough is enough
and it is unacceptable. whatever the congressional budget office says, we do not care. it has got to be the law. >> thank you both. >> marty wanted to say something more. >> i just wanted to add a little bit about the health reform bill, the affordable care act, just a little bit more because we talked about the community first choice and the money follows the person. i wanted to mention that, as senator harkin said, we hear a lot about the health aspects of the new lot and not as much about long-term services provisions. there are quite a lot of new provisions in health reform that affect long-term services began support. they're way too many to go into in this setting right now, but i urge you to pay careful attention to the things you get
on the web, it satcher, from the organizations you belong to, because there will be a lot of opportunities that come out in terms of improvements to the medicaid program, a different improvements, different changes in their laws that will make it easier to get community-based services. and then there's a new program that will take some time for the administration to design and implement called the class act, which will create a new voluntary insurance program for long-term services that will allow people actually to cover themselves and not end up in the medicaid program hopefully and not have to impoverish themselves to be eligible. so that is sort of one of the future things we're talking about on this hopefully in the future some point, individuals and their families can cover themselves for these needs without having to go into poverty and being dependent on medicaid. that is one of the things to look forward to in the future.
but i want to say this law is full of things that will help people and help meet people's needs, but we cannot cover them all today. thank you. >> hello. >> another person who was there at the creation. >> yes, yes. [inaudible] >> no, you're a teenager in 1990. >> yes, three years ago. senator harkin, we have many people that make the claims of the one to hire people with disabilities, etc., etc. joyce bender is in the room. >> i see her. last week, she honor the national security agency for their outstanding work on hiring people with disabilities.
a goals abound. when is the united states senate, united states congress going to make their own goal of hiring people with disabilities? you are always telling people that you all should hire them, but i want to see what you guys can do. show me the money. [laughter] [applause] >> absolutely right. you are right. you're absolutely right. i mean, we keep going to the employment offices and stuff like that. i keep pushing affirmative action. it is not enough just to sit back and wait. a lot of people have disabilities and did not even know these jobs are available. there has to be some kind of affirmative-action. >> right. but if we have harry reid and nancy pelosi using the bully pulpit and making a commitment, we get the word out. we find the people to come. >> and again, becky, you have
done so well over the past 20 years i have known you, and just keep poking. >> i have no intention of stopping. >> ok. [applause] >> today, i am speaking to you from the u.s. international council on disabilities, and i was so happy to see more bipartisan colleagues up there and talk about how important the bipartisan spirit was in getting the ada and other disability laws passed. one of the things that i do not think any of us expected was held the ada would resonate around the world and a profound impact it has had on people with disabilities all over the world but also their governments. and as you know, the u.n. passed a treaty on the rights of people with disabilities called the u.n. convention on the rights of people with disabilities. what is your expectation in the
senate? can we count on the same kind of bipartisan spirit when president obama since the ratification package over for consideration? >> well, i hope he sends it over soon. maybe we will talk with him about that today. i do not know. i have looked to the convention. i see nothing wrong, why we cannot get the 67 votes we need in the senate to adopt it. again, i hope it is going to be something that we can get both sides and some of the people on the first panel to weigh in on that and move it forward committee former president bush, maybe both president bushes. we will weigh in on that and work on both sides of the aisle. i am and colorful but we can adopt it. i am really am. maybe a few people might object to this or to that, but i have
got to believe we will have 67 votes in the senate. maybe more than that, hopefully. hopefully it will be unanimous. i just returned from a trip to vietnam, and in 1999, 1999, a delegation of vietnamese came here to see me and staff, and i think this talked to other people in the disability community at that time because they wanted to do a similar kind of law in vietnam. i was just there in july, earlier this month, and the vietnamese assembly passed a law in june on the rights of people with disabilities. quite frankly, it mirrors a lot of the ada, so it is catching on. it is moving. >> thanks to you. >> thank you. listen, i am told -- that i have to quit. that is what i am told. is there someone that really has something that they want to convey before we really call it
to a close? one person and this will be the last one. >> hello, i am executive director of the center for independent living. over the years, i have worked closely with gayle on policy. we brought the country together for the program. one that the state has and when the federal government has given us. one of the biggest barriers that we have in maryland and across the nation is as much as we want to free our people from nursing homes, it is not going to happen until hud steps up to the plate. we need housing. we need to set aside vouchers for people living in nursing homes.
when they are getting the wafers, they need to have a voucher to go along with it. >> that is right. thank you. i am really glad i called on new. every time we talk about getting people at of institutional settings, there is a problem of accessible, affordable housing. so that is another issue on hud we have to be focusing on. anybody want to add to that? >> where is hud? >> we have enough people here to work on hud. >> we can go visit them. they just love it when we show up. >> you are right on the money. right on the market we have to have more affordable, accessible housing for people with disabilities. that is one of the elements that we did not focus on. thank you for bringing that up. >> thank you. >> before we go, i also want to introduce my staff person who has organized all of this.
[inaudible] [applause] >> good job. [captioning performed by national captioning institute] [captions copyright national cable satellite corp. 2010] >> i want to thank all of you and thank our panelists for an enlightening discussion. i think the audience for being here today and across america. i hope many of you will be able to participate in celebrations of the ada's 20th anniversary in local communities in america. i hope all of you that are here will be at the white house later on this afternoon from 4:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m., it i am not mistaken. something like that. at the white house. please tune in at 2:00 p.m. on the house of representatives. today is a great day to remember how we got here and to recommit ourselves to make sure that the promise of the ada is not just a promise but is fulfilled. i am always reminded that
emancipation proclamation by abraham lincoln was not fulfilled for 100 years until the civil rights act of 1964. waiting 100 years to have the promise of the ada to be alive and fully implemented, but we are going to do it now. we have to recommit ourselves. thank you all very much. [applause] >> thank you, senator harkin.
>> as senator harkin calls this event to a close, he will return to the senate chamber this afternoon. the senate will be in session at 3:00 p.m. eastern. you can see live coverage on c- span2. the house started at 12:30 p.m. today for the morning hours. they will be coming back for legislative business at 2:00 p.m. eastern with votes at 6:00 p.m., and one other items on the agenda today is a suspended bill that deals with the americans with disabilities act. and you can see live suspension built -- you can see live coverage of the house here when members return at 2:00 p.m. eastern. >> c-span, our public affairs content is available on television, radio, and online,
and you can also connect with us on it twitter, facebook, and u2, and for our schedule alert e- mails @ c-span.org. and now, a member of the european parliament on the european economy in the future of the euro currency, hosted in washington. it is an organization associated with the german free democratic party. it lasts about an hour. [rings bell] >> welcome, i am delighted you could join this today. i am the rep of the foundation in washington, d.c. i and also want to welcome them viewers of c-span today.
it is a great pleasure to have you with us. since we have had such a great turnout, i feel obliged to say a little bit about what we're doing here at the foundation. it is the german political foundation that is associated to one of the german parties, and in this case, the free democratic party in germany. we have offices in 60 countries all over the world where we promote democracy building and human rights. of course, it is very hard to do in washington, d.c., so i am the head of a project called transatlantic dialogue project. the name basically says what we're doing. we are trying to create a dialogue among decision makers on both sides of the atlantic, as well in washington, d.c., and brussels and berlin. for these reasons, we're
delighted to welcome our guest who is a member of the european parliament, and he is here this week on his own initiative, which i also want to commend, and he is getting information on consumer protections and on class action suits because those are issues that are before the parliament, and he wants to get information on both. so i am thankful that he, on his own initiative, made this trip. and of course, then i took the opportunity to ask him to speak on the subject, and i think the numbers of people that are here show how interested the washington audience is on the issue -- a single market without
a single currency. and i have asked him to talk not only about a single currency, the euro crisis, but also to talk to him about the financial reform efforts that are going on in europe. so i am really happy that he was a very willing to do this. he has spent a member of the european parliament since 2009. there was a european election beforehand, and he worked for 25 years at a big giant german chemical company. and in his later stage, he joined the state parliament for a state representative for 11 years. among his duties were he was vice president of the parliament, and also, the last
four years, he was the chairman of the european committee. so when it came about to select the people who might want to go into the european parliament, they asked him, and he said why not. he had promised his wife, and i asked if i could tell this story, he promised his wife that he would retire from politics, and then he ran in germany on a position where the free democratic party never got anybody into the european parliament. so he basically said, i am not running. by the way, i am on this list, but it is very doubtful i will end up in the european parliament. and last year, we had a very good year, and all of a sudden, he was a member of the european parliament, and his wife is not really happy about it. but that is his diplomatic and political skills to solve that problem.
so i am it really delighted that you are here today, and yasser really delighted to see all of you. and i am very much looking forward to your presentation. so please welcome our guest. [applause] >> thank you very much. when you look at the free democratic party, and would not be in the european parliament. we will see how fast something can change in politics. but anyway, we are elected for five years. so from 2009 to two dozen 14, we have to work on it. and because it's all here in united states, i need to report to the european parliament and to the commission, to the president about the proposal
that he could push single market -- [unintelligible] and i said ok, this is very close to class actions in the united states. and that is the reason i am here, to inform you a little bit what is in favor and what is against that. i will see what the commission will bring us. that's my topic of single markets without a single currency. it is not up to me to stand before you today to present to you a european view on one of the most rising issues of our time. whether it is the roots of the financial and the euro crisis, investors from germany in europe to prevent this in the future. finally, how can we work together at the global level for sustainable economy? by enterprise, it is a global economy since the summer of
2007, and it is a precedent in post-war economic history. recreated the deepest recession on the european economy since 1930. in 2009, -- this is the starkest contradiction of the history of the european union. finally, 2009, economic recession came to an end in the eu in large part because of the measure put into place under the european economic recovery act. it included a fiscal stimulus of about two billion euros, and about 3 billion euros at the european investment bank level. the fiscal stimulus was completed by proposals to speed up structural reforms and
investment measures that both european and national levels. as you know, the crisis has many forces. an ovation, financial products, a willingness by lenders to take excessive risks, low interest rates, and the degree of the investor for high-yield -- higher yields. [unintelligible] the repackaging of credits, the complexity of products, and a phalanx of intermediation made it more difficult and sometimes impossible to clearly evaluate the nature and the magnitude of the risks involved and identify those. the put investment in such products without the necessary capital requirements.
it was a distressed which led to a liquidity crisis which had to be addressed by economic stimulus packages and financial aid to support banks that were too big to fail across the world. in the eu, economic recovery measures led it to spending. at the same time, as another consequence of the crisis, eu countries staged a sharp increase in tax revenues. this was due to a public deficit, budget deficits, and rising public debts. these can be found in the fixed states like portugal, ireland, italy, greece, and spain which already had high public spending for many years. as you are well aware, greece marked the beginning of the euro trials. in order to get access to credit
on the international capital markets, greece had to accept the highest interest rates since the introduction of the euro this increase their payment obligations and reduced the credit ratings even further. we had a vicious circle which ultimately threaten the country's solvency in spring 2010. the great crisis became a hero crisis -- the crisis in greece became a european crisis. ultimately, support by the greek government on may 9, even members agreed on the 750 billion euros emergency rescue plan to save greece and the states like portugal and spain which were also in discussion. mainly this was to save trees from insolvency and pulling down
the rest of the eurozone. loans were 500 billion euro guaranteed. in addition, loans worth 250 billion euros were available by the imf, the international monetary fund. in spite of the success of these short-term measures, recovery will be slow and painful. the financial and euro crisis made it clear that both the financial system and the european monetary union need to be reformed last week, the u.s. congress adopted president obama's reform package bringing the biggest changes in banking regulations since the world financial crisis in the 1920's. what is being done in europe to reform the financial markets? the democratic party in the european parliament has
requested the reform of financial markets and regulations with financial supervision calling for guidelines and principles. there has to be more transparency on the markets. to many credit default swaps are traded over-the-counter and not in the public trade market. the second is responsibility. all markets must take responsibility for their actions and take corrective measures. third is the sustainability, market stability must be restored in a sustainable and long term basis to allow growth and innovation. here we need stronger cooperation of supervisory bodies. fourth, investor relations at the european and international levels. i have been trying to translate these into more concrete proposals. for supervision this means in
concrete terms supervisory bodies must collaborate more internationally and exchange information in order to recognize systemic risk at any earlier stage. this calls for cooperation between european supervisors and the european central bank but also for the national supervisors and central banks. for a european to revise your authority should work to decentralize much like the european system with central banks. european supervisory authority should directly supervise cross-border financial activity in the eu. since september 2009, the european commission's submitted a legislative proposal to create three european authorities. these are the european banking authorities coming european insurance and occupational pension authority, and the
european securities and market authority. in addition to them, european systemic risk board which will act as an early-warning system within the european central bank. the free democratic party and the european parliament consider these proposals are going in the right direction. however, in the view of the european parliament they do not go far enough. it one more reform -- they once more reform as outlined. however, the member states only one to limit this new authority to the rating agencies. the negotiation has been difficult and they are still ongoing. with regard to banks, we ask the following. banks must be able to not go bankrupt. if they did not constitute a systemic risk.
reckless risk-taking must be punished. otherwise we had a moral hazard. banks should be prepared for crisis situations with emergency plans which would also enable the >> separation of certain parts of the banks. -- which also enabled the quake separation. there needs to be more long-term oriented and be transparent. risk-management needs to be improved. off-balance sheet activities should be limited. banks should follow their business models. a bank that specializes in small and medium-sized businesses should not be an investment bank. but at the same time, providers of services that are familiar to banks must be regulated as a bank. furthermore, the capital requirements from basil 2 need to be in revised and they must be implemented -- implemented in the you -- the eu and the u.s..
the international basil iii regulations, we have submitted our own legislative proposal in july to thousand nine increasing capital requirements for the books and 3-securitized -- re- securitized issues. since july, only a few days ago, european parliament and member states adopted the new directive. from 2011, banks must tied bonuses on at the basket -- under the basic salaries. this will not limit bonuses, but there will be strict guidelines in order to prevent disproportionate bonuses. the biggest part of the bonuses
may only be paid after three- five years when the managers have proved to be successful. if the bank gets into financial difficulties, bankers will be liable for their bonuses that have not yet been paid for them. in addition, the commission is working on proposals to harmonize insolvency laws in different member states going hand-in-hand with the cross- border management system for the banking industry. and insolvency mechanism would allow this to survive. the remaining part of the company would declare bankruptcy. finally, rating agencies should be "-- should become more transparent. they should provide a clearer information. and has to be clear with a rating means. we have to discuss and herons
interests between agencies and trading services at the same time. in 2009, the eu adopted a regulation on credit regulating agencies which are supposed to tackle all of these points. from january 2011, all credit rating agencies will have to register with the european securities and a market authority. supervision is it to increase. the supervisory authorities will not be allowed to influence the contents of the rating agencies. new rules are to prevent conflicts of interest and to ensure increased transparency as well as the quality of credit ratings. overall, we have supported the compromise. however, the new regulation makes it more difficult for small rating agencies to access the european market.
you know the biggest three agencies. standard and poor's, moody's, and fitch. this structure could be broken. the eu should swiftly go towards an independent rating of their own. the european parliament would like to make sure that country ratings are carried out in the most clear of ways. therefore, the three private rating agencies should be complemented by the european ratings foundation which would work similarly to the test. the eu rating foundation would be limited to country ratings, which is very important only for country ratings, would foster competition within and between the established rating agencies. it would be independent of the juror can central-bank and political influence by the commission or member states.
the foundation should also be financially independent. they should financed by selling ratings to investment. in the future it should be mandatory for government bonds of member states to have two ratings, one of them from the european rating foundation. now i have spoken a lot about the initiatives of the financial markets reform in the european union, however financial markets all over the world are more interconnected. if you really want to prevent another crisis from happening, we need to reach international agreements of financial market reforms. the g-20 unites the 20 leading industrial and emerging economies, at the summit last june all countries agree the, "to lead worldwide growth on a sustainable path." the u.s. and european union but
then how stable growth can be aligned with public budgets. the u.s. and some emerging countries want strict saving policies and in export nations like germany. by contrast, european countries made it clear that the transition of the budget after spending billions of your robes on the crisis. but they wanted to have a universal bank levy to make them pay for the cost of the financial crisis. canada, japan, and brazil could not be convinced to impose a levy on their banks. however, the eu countries are now planning to go ahead with a european bank levy.
it is very -- it could be a very crucial point because the money goes in that area where you have no such levies. when the united states and europe go in the same direction, they do not have all of the regulations and this could create a problem because it does not work with the relations. of course, a unilateral levy could lead to a loss of the european competitive banking sector. they could switch to other countries that did not have a levee in place.
that would kill any chance of bringing such a measure on a global scale in the future. the european parliament rejects the financial transaction tax but supports the financial activity tax which is limited to high risk transactions. i know the transaction tax would be a very small margin could perhaps help it and it would create money for the budget. it would help to reduce the budget deficit from the previous years. as i mentioned, when this does not work because you can go via the internet, you can make your orders oliver the world, so that is a failed proposal. -- make your orders all over the world. we have a long way to go until a comprehensive financial reform of the global markets can be
reached. it has moved from a financial crisis to a euro crisis. we need a new basis for the european monetary union. the monetary policy is on the possible in the long term. the economic policies are coordinated with other eurozone members. that is a problem we have. when you compare the euro with the dollar, there must not be a single market but you also have taxes and basis on the market. we have 27 member states which can create problems. the euro crisis seems to predict the common european country who has never believed it could work.
some politicians in germany have demanded the reintroduction of the deutsche mark. to recall what is at stake here, let's look at its underlying assumptions. what are the advantages of the common european currency? first of all, price stability. since the end of world war ii, germany has always been a champion of stability -- stable financial policy inbundesbank -- financial policy. the bundesbank has a great reputation. the first 10 years of the economic and monetary european union, the ec been -- the ecb
has been more successful. the deflationary rate has decreased in all of the member states. a more stable exchange rate with the dollar. since spring 2002, the euro as almost continuously risen against the dollar. only the greek crisis led to the devaluation of the euro. we have recovered a little bit. most of the eurozone countries enjoy a more stable exchange rates compared to before when short-term currency fluctuations have been less recent. there is a cross-border trade in the international market. furthermore, businesses no longer need to add that the exchange rates.
germany is an export driven country. for us, it was very important to introduce the euro because we now have a big advantage to deliver on our products into the european market without looking to the exchange rates. in germany and some other countries, there was a boost of about 2%. there is a boost in foreign trade it. thanks to the euro, exports within the european union have increased by about 5% because some companies which had never exported goods finally got to enter the export business. finally, protection from currency crisis especially with other european countries whose credit rating had suffered. it agrees, spain, and portugal had national currencies, this
would have come under enormous pressure to reevaluate. these countries would have borrowed mostly in foreign currency and the the debt would become more striking. before we get to the proposal reforms in more detail, we should take a look at how the economic and monetary union works at the moment. at the moment, 16 of the 27 eu countries are members of the eurozone. 11 countries have not yet introduced the euro that have the obligation to do so according to the european treaty. except our great britain and denmark. the candidate country must fulfill the master criteria adopted in 1991. this is to ensure a familiar
stable economic development of the bridge dissipating countries. the following conditions should bit -- must be fulfilled. the country must prove a high degree of price stability. the inflation rate can only be 1.5%. each point above the average inflation rate of the three most stable euros own countries. -- eurozone countries. the yearly deficit of the public budget may not be higher than 3% of gdp, gross domestic product. the total government debt may not exceed 60% of the g.d.p. exchange rates must be stable. the national currency must not go beyond the margin of deviation of the european monetary system for in these two
years before examination of the application and the interest rates for long-term credit should been familiar. the interest rate for long-term credit could not be more than two percentage flights above the interest rate of the three countries with the highest price stability. as you know, greece joined the team of european monetary union because of a fake statistics in 2001. did put this in the budget for defense, not that they are responsible. they crossed that out. there would have to increase the cost for defense. they are fighting against turkey, both in nato partners, but most money is spent in the
military budget is to protect what they are thinking is against turkey. we let them join the monetary union ultimately. it was a problem of political position. in addition, the master criteria is stability. from 1999, this was intended to ensure the member states maintained budgetary stability after the single currency had been introduced. it opens the way of to penalize any participating member state that fails to take appropriate measures to end in excess of deficit. this is the so-called excessive deficit procedure. initially, the penalty would take the form of a non-interest
bond up a set -- non-interest bond. it could be converted into a fine if the deficit is not corrected within two years. however, there is no fixed rules concerning the penalties. they are subjects to circumstances by the council. that is a problem. in march 2005, the european council under the pressure of france and germany, proceedings of 3% of budget deficit and 60% of public debt were maintained but the decision to declare a country with excessive deficit can now rely on certain -- i will not give you the behavior of the level of debt, the duration of a slow-growth period, and the possibility that the deficit is related to
productivity enhancing futures. it is clear that the economic and monetary union needs to be reformed in order to prevent future crises like the one caused by greece. the european parliament asked for four concrete measures in this respect. first, the european commission must receive the necessary competencies' to work and to be able to implement. second, compliance with the stability must be enforced on the basis of the rules that more emphasis on the competitiveness. third, control of compliance needs to improved through tough sanctions. tough sanctions could range from naming, warnings, and losing voting rights in the council, blocking eu money for agriculture, structural and cohesion funds.
the commission should receive a more rights in order to be able to get recommendations to member states over the formulation of their economic policies and budget. competitiveness needs to be a part of the economic policy. this is very important. do not create devaluation when you are competitive. you cannot be competitive in the international market. this is why the competitiveness is one issue we need. we need the direct crisis resolution which comes interaction in actions like this. this could work at less to
stabilize the european monetary system. the objective is not -- which would be in contradiction. it would not be in accordance with the constitution. finally, financial support by the voluntary fund. it would not be to take over the debt but the short-term support. this has yet detracted critics from the european central bank many questions are still open including who would pay into the fund and how independent it would be from the commission.
between the german and french governments, there was a question of how the government should be organized in the future. the french president was in favor for a permanent director it of the 16 euro countries. angela merkel was in agreement. the euro countries can meet. as of june 13, the european commission made several proposals to improve the stability. the proposed measures represent the lowest common denominator between the member states and do not require any changes to the eu treaty. that is important to know. when you change the treaty coming in the acceptance of all 27 member states. in germany, there have to pass
the parliament. in other member states, they need the vote of the population. that is why nobody after the lisbon treaty is in favor to change again the eu treaty. they tried to handle all the problems within the 13 e. according to the proposal, member states should coordinate budgets in a structured measure. it would be a so-called european semester. this will start jan. 2011. furthermore, member states should be forced to comply with quicker sanctions. if they do not comply with the 60% g.d.p. criteria date risk losing their subsidies. this could be a lot of money.
fishers and farmers which still be entitled by -- and had to subsidies, but they would have to be been paid in would put pressure local governments to be in line with all of the proposals. if a member state fails to make progress on the consolidation of their budget, they will have to have the deficit within the eu. the money is paid back with interest. in addition to budgets, the commission plans to introduce economic surveillance, an early warning system to assess indicators like competitiveness, inflation, a private debt. in most confirmed cases, the commission would make a country specific recommendations and to propose putting them in the excess of balances position.
for the enforcement mechanism in the case of a serious competitive breach of recommendation [unintelligible] they did not take the further for a proposal from the german chancellor of finance. it is very important in a political positions. in these these recommendations and the later run in yet -- in later years, there will be a decision about that. you have to get the acceptance of the member states, too, which is a problem have. in order to exclude non compliant states, we propose them to exclude non complaint states. this will make sure that
sinner's do not grow over sinners. i fear this will lot has maturity of which the german chancellor, angela merkel, and sarkozy had intimated that the summit two years ago. nevertheless, the reforms proposal which lets us many of our requests and is a step forward in the right direction and the three can expect the reform to be adopted this year since it seems to be based on a general consensus between member states. the problem would not be to implement it this year, the follow-up would be and i hope we can come to resolution. in conclusion, financial market reform is an extremely difficult task on the european and even more at the global level. the four steps need to be taken
and a lot remains to be done. the same holds for the european monetary union. we cannot afford to lose the advantages of the euro. the euro is a must. if we cannot have the euro, we can forget the european market. if you have a single market, you need a single currency. you have to first meet the criteria. otherwise you will, out -- will come out like your crisis. we cannot afford to lose the advantages of the euro so we need to do it -- need to use of our political energy now to get the job done while the window of opportunity is still open. the crisis can be defined as crucial but a significant part or a turning point. in the case of the european union, there are two options.
either play a part and emerge from the crisis stronger in united than other. -- united than ever. i would say i hope is that option because it is a very difficult and complicated. we need to bring all the 27 member states with different interests. i will give you one example. germany has about 25% of their gdp in manufacturing, in industry. great britain has about 17%. there are much different interests. as a manufacturing industry, we have a problem because we need our products to be exported not only within the eu. we need to be in the global
market, to asia. that is very important. for us, we need to stay with the euro. thank you very much for the visit here and for your attention. [applause] >> thank you very much. i think what this it did was that in previous events we have a lot of questions on the greek crisis and financial services and we never got the full picture. i think this is the full picture. i appreciate your doing this. we have a little time for questions. microphone? please introduce yourself. a little louder.
>> he made an intriguing suggestion. [unintelligible] someone in the manner of how the patent office exists apart from the fees paid. i'm trying to imagine how that will work. initially, on paper or on bond, they need to have a rating available for investors. that tells them whether or not they want to buy that. they will pay the fee to the rating agency. he did not have to concede that these coming from the issuer's but the purchasers. there are so many instruments. will there be enough purchasers to make this work?
about thehinking european rating agency. it should be a foundation. it is financed and only based on the ratings of the bonds of states, not of companies. we had a problem in germany that the ratings coming out were saying the ratings were reduced. it was pushed against the euro. most of them worried there was a budget deficit. in that moment, the ratings were coming out, and everyone was concerned.
let's try a foundation which will be financed and operates with no relation to the european governments toward the european central bank. it is very important. the other important part if we collect money is when we make a proposal or say something to collect the money. that is the idea, to get more competitiveness on that market. the european debt, but nothing against the free american dead, but when the greek was ending, the downgrading came from portugal and then spain. that is the problem we have.
>> very interesting propositions. >> can you introduce yourself? >> i am a specialist in litigation against tax -- toxic assets. i think qlogic a good lesson from the united states because our supreme court recently made a decision that class actions cannot extend territorially to help protect german investors from actions by u.s. banks and others. the th example the te ikb is not likely to be extended because that was an sec litigation case. class action's did have great promise for protecting against future financial crises as well as current financial crises. the problem, i suggest, which is not in the litany you identified
was the $1 trillion of clatter rise debt obligations -- collateralized debt obligations. many of them will not dissipate in a class-action lawsuit. the accounting rules make it possible, as you put it, use fake statistics. and is called spake accounting. to be a plaintiff, you have to admit you are wrong. if you are hiding the loss in bonds that you claimed have not fallen in value, then you do not have a claim. the european economic union is about to release the bank stress tests. that is a stress -- that is a central issue in the headlines today. the testing that of the 91 banks only accounts for trading losses. they allow the banks to hide
the $1.30 trillion, for example. i would push to do class-action litigation. they can protect things better than cut financial lawyers. you need an accounting system that forces real losses to be registered. >> what i would like to mention is all of the accounting. i was in the accounting department. in normandy under the german law, your honor allowed to put the highest amount you had. you had to write it out next month to the acquisition cost. that was a main problem to get
profits on paper, not realizing it could go over the costs. they pushed to the bonds on it. they increase the profit and equity on the other side. later on when they were nothing, everyone has to devaluate, drive down coming in the problem was that everyone had to go in different directions. they were thinking of the fair value principle. >> we have a question back there.
>> i was expecting to hear from you some sort of penalty of two greece for misrepresenting their membership application for the eu. is there no provision, say, ending the membership of greece in the european union or penalizing them in some way so that they understand that this kind of deception does not work for the union? in has been a disaster. i do not understand why more has not been done. >> that is a problem for the politicians to decide. that is why we would like to have rules. it is clear that they did not fill the criteria.
i will not blame the government, everybody knows they were too high. germany was over 3%. was it okay? that is a big problem we have a. you cannot introduce retirements which automatically. in place when someone is against it or breaks the rules and you make political decisions. politics do not like to have these rules. they like to discuss the problems. now we get from the european commission a new mechanism.
they have to balance the budget and then the commission looks over the budget. they can say that your deficit is it too high or whenever. the german parliament, no one will go in there and they decide what they have to do, but the commission can say your budget is it too high and to reduce it. there is no mechanism with the euro. that is a problem. in prior years, there was a mechanism. the exchange rate devaluated and do that more competitive in the market. for example, greece had to% of their funds before the crisis. it was the same interest rate than germany had.
germany still had to%. when you profit -- germany still had 2%. -- it is not good to make a higher inflation rate. all these proposals, all of the european central bank have to have the credit rating between the zero- -- 0-2% otherwise they have to go against the high inflation rate. all countries have a high budget deficit in the console that only with a high inflation rate. it will take between 2-4% to reduce the deficit. that is not a good proposal by fine because we need stability for the people and for the
industry. >> i am dain marshall. i wonder if i can ask the speaker to comment a little bit about one of the most burning issues right now coming out of the pittsburgh and toronto and g-20 which is on the rebalancing. i wonder if you can tell us what we might expect to see in late terms of the steps the germans will take towards rebalancing with respect not only to the eu but globally? >> you were talking about balancing the budget? >> rebalancing in terms of domestic demand as compared to exporting as a means for growth.
>> [unintelligible] the interests are increasing in increasing. in the same way, we have a reducing population in germany. we have all of the social security's. we have to fulfill the pension, social welfare, all of these things. your interest in total, the proportion is increasing and increasing. you have problems. there are only two steps you can do. you can increase inflation, which is not a good solution. you can reduce a budget. i think they will have to do the
same. either you have a big discussion in the g-20 with obama, they were against it. i hear that the united states will go the same direction because i think there is no all that -- no alternative. the need to bring more of a push into the inner market and increase the consumption. the increase in consumption is a problem of thinking with the population. in the moment, we have a very low unemployment rate, a good unemployment rate.
we have 7.8%, i said, at the moment. in some parts to have less than 5%. you have a good, safe job, then they will spend their money. they have money and can invest. we have similar firm and to stimulate the consumer in germany which did not work in the past. i prefer to say make good economic policy. we are very happy that we are increasing exports. the chinese people are buying bmw, mercedes had the highest prices because now we have a
[inaudible] >> cash for clunkers. [laughter] >> it was a push for the industry thediatsu.. every chinese would like to have a mercedes, bmw, or an hour the. -- or an audi. >> mr. creutzmann, thank you very much. >> thank you. [applause] >> think all of you for coming this friday. i think it give you a little taste of what the transatlantic dialogue means. i think you get more knowledge about europe than you ever wanted to know, but that is the price for lunch. [laughter]
on that, i wish you all a very nice summer. enjoy the nice weather outside. have a nice weekend. we will see a the next time here. thank you. [applause] >> both chambers of congress are in session today. the house comes in for legislative business at 2:00 p.m. on the agenda coming fiscal year 2011 spending for military construction and veterans affairs, also the department of transportation and housing and urban development. also, additional spending for the wars in afghanistan and iraq. live coverage of the house on c- span. the senate gavels in on -- at 3:00 p.m. in the response to a recent supreme court decision, the procedural vote on the measure is scheduled for tuesday. president obama will talk about the bill shortly. live coverage at 2:20 p.m. on c-
span2. senators are expected to resume work on a small business bill. you can follow the senate live on c-span3. before the house gavels in coming here is a look at american soldiers training troops in afghanistan. >> a free-lance journalist recently traveled to afghanistan to observe u.s. troops training afghan security forces bagram airforce. many troops are receiving training from the u.s. military. >> this is my third trip to afghanistan since summer 2007. on this trip, i focus my attention the capital area around a couple -- around kabul and the pakistani border. i spent time with the army unit training afghan comandos at bagram.
they have an aviation unit working to train them in air assault. you cannot get anywhere by road easily. the roads are poor. even where they exist, the conditions are so extreme it can take you hours. it is preferable to move by air. because of the absence of a rhodes and the cultural expectations -- because of the absence of roads, they are stationary. they cannot move easily which limits their ability to respond to taliban attacks. the commandos are supposed to be a the exception. the u.s. army and nato are treating them to fly assault missions all over afghanistan in their own helicopters. there is an army national air corps.
these are certified pilots to have russian-made helicopters. the have gone through training. the commandos are being trained in how to board a helicopter, secure a landing zone, get off the helicopter, and do this all safely even if under enemy fire. i got to observe a graduation exercise which turned out to be a real-life mission at the time the acting commandos and air crew working with nato at bagram to out into a village and the idea was to practice air assault techniques but also do some humanitarian work at the village. they wanted to prove that these guys can plan their own operations and operate their own aircraft and do it safely. they can bring all of these -- bring all of these moving parts together, ground troops, landing gear. they can do it safely and then
execute a mission. they did it. they secured a landing zone. they flew in, went into the village, they had boxes of it cheap radios, school supplies, and invited the villagers to come in to get some of the stuff. that is where it broke down. the military side of the operation was well planned and executed. no one had bothered to check with the village authorities. from the perspective of the village, especially the people in charge, the police and village elders, they got invaded by the afghan commando force. ironically one of the points of
giving out humanitarian aid was for the command is to build a quick relations with the community. they totally undermined that by not coordinating their arrival with the village. the helicopters swooped in and landed. they had permission to land in a field not to ruin crops. they show up with all of this free stuff, hundreds of people swarm them. the commandos are having to do violent crime control. they are trying to keep these people at bay. the cops show up. they are irritated, which is an understatement. no one had bothered to ask them. >> we were trying to go little further away. one of the reasons we are here is because -- when the commanders to practice these techniques.
-- and went home. the afghan military is a mixed bag. the afghan security forces are a mixed bag. there is the national army, police, border guard, there is an air corps. the quality of these forces varies pretty wild. the fleet is while they considered corrupt if not actual talibna. the act -- if not actual taliban. this is the old northern alliance that fought the last war. the has been platooned into the afghan government and dressed in new uniforms and given training. they are male leave -- they are mainly from the north. they are not bad as they go. the best of the best are the
afghan commandos. at one of the major operating basis, the army is trading up afghan security forces. part of that means trying to give them a sense of physical fitness standards. these guys are all fairly tough. they climb up and down mountains. it is not systematic. the army is trying to get them to do army-style physical training. >> 5, 4, 3, 2, 11. good job. >> was the hardest part of this job? >> as far as an instructor?
probably the language barrier. many of the things we want to get across and things we want to put emphasis on, sometimes it is hard because it might not get translated exactly right or they may not understand some things. >> we are taking to capitol hill as the u.s. house convenes for legislative business. the agenda today includes committee the 20 anniversary of the americans with disabilities act. this is live house coverage on c-span. been uncovered as obstacles to equal opportunity have been removed. by celebrating the accomplishments of the past 20 years founded in the initiative of the disabilities act, lord god, responsible government has continued to embrace the advent and development of your people. lord here, may each -- hear may
each child of disadvantage and victim of war and accident be given hope and grounding for personal aspirations to achieve his or her full potential in your sight. with the help of research, engineering, medicine, and professional therapy, may government uphold the nation's commitment to equal opportunity in the pursuit of happiness. and may every american rejoice and thank you, almighty god, for the next step and every step to be taken to open and full accessibility through place and position for all citizens in a just world. for this we pray and will continue to work both now and forever. amen.
the speaker pro tempore: the chair has examined the journal of the last day's proceedings and announces to the house his approval thereof. pursuant to clause 1 of rule 1, the journal stands approved. the pledge of allegiance will be led by the gentleman from rhode island, mr. kennedy. mr. kennedy: let me first offer my congratulations, jim, in your ascension to the speaker's chair and how much we are proud of this special day and thank you for the example you have set for all americans. this pledge today has a deeper meaning because of your example. i pledge allegiance to the flag of the united states of america and to the republic for which it stands, one nation under god, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all.
the speaker pro tempore: for what purpose does the gentlewoman from new york rise? ms. slaughter: mr. speaker, on this most important day in the house of representatives, i send to the desk h.res. 1555, an act for immediate consideration in the house. the speaker pro tempore: the clerk will report the title of the resolution. the clerk: house resolution 1555, resolution permitting individuals in the hall of the house in order to improve the accessibility of the hall of house. the speaker pro tempore: is there objection to consideration of the resolution? without objection, the resolution is agreed to. and the motion to reconsider is laid upon the table. ms. slaughter: mr. speaker. the speaker pro tempore: the chair will now request -- general tain requests for one-minute speeches.
-- entertain requests for one-minute speeches. for what purpose does the gentlewoman from california rise? >> to address the house for one minute. the speaker pro tempore: without objection. the speaker: thank you very much, mr. speaker, jim langevin . mr. speaker, it's with great pride and joy that i rise today to acknowledge the history that you are making. by your leadership and your inspiration and your education of the congress, you have helped take us to a place that honors the tradition and the goals of our founders. to improve liberty and equality for all americans. today through technology, the leadership of the architect of the house, we are able to in a way that is almost magical extend to you the privilege
that you deserved all along, to be able to preside over the house. we are joined by our former colleagues in the house and now senator, senator harkin, who is set to champion a path -- set in championing the path to americans with disability act. our colleagues who worked so hard on that subject, mr. markey, mr. kennedy, and the champion in our house on americans with disabilities act, steny hoyer, our wished majority leader. mr. sensenbrenner has made this part of his legacy in the congress, not so fast, i know, more to come, but we thank you on being the champion on civil rights that you are and i see now we have been joined by our distinguished republican leader of the house, mr. boehner. this is a bipartisan effort. it has been all along. it is a cause for celebration.
it is a source of liberation, and it's important to note that there is a reason mr. langevin is first. he is first because of his courage. he's first because of his inspiration, and he's first because when i became speaker he said to me, now that you are presiding, i want to preside, too. so when that day when we made history having the first woman speaker of the house, it became clear that we had to make history today in having jim langevin preside on this historic occasion which is a source of pride to all of us, but also a source of challenge as to how we go forward addressing the new technology so that we can continue to remove barriers of porpgs to all americans. -- participation of all americans. it's better for them and better for our country.
now we can go forward as clearly saying that we respect people for what they can do not judge them or limit them for what they cannot. and that we can more fully honor the pledge of allegiance that mr. kennedy led us in earlier, one nation, under god, with liberty, and this is about liberation, with liberty and justice for all. congratulations, mr. langevin. thank you. the speaker pro tempore: the chair thanks the house, the gentlelady from california. the chair will entertain further one-minute requests. for what purpose does the gentleman from ohio rise?
>> to address the house for one minute. the speaker pro tempore: the chair recognizes the minority leader without objection. mr. boehner: thank you, mr. speaker. i rise today to join with the speaker and majority leader in recognizing the 20th anniversary of the americans with disabilities act. first i want to applaud you, mr. speaker, for making history today as the first american with disabilities to preside over this distinguished body. it's truly an inspiring sight and a reminder that the disabled are, of course, among the most active and functional members of our society. and it's a testament to the historic measure that we are celebrating today. i also want to congratulate my colleague, mr. hoyer, the majority leader, who i know played a key role in making this legislation a reality along with other colleagues from the other body and retired, along with mr. sensenbrenner, but really want
to thank all of you for ensuring that we come together across the aisle when necessary when it comes to make certain that we continue this act fulfills its original mission. before the americans with disabilities act, nowhere in the world was there a comprehensive declaration of equality for people with disabilities. in the medical community people with disabilities are called handicapable. because they succeed in the face of great personal obstacles. there was a time, however, when the encouragement alone was not enough to get them into their hometown theaters to see a movie or office build to go apply for a job, much less to provide for their families. now, those wrongs were corrected on july 26, 1990, when president gorge herber walker bush signed the americans with disabilities act
into law on the south lawn of the white house. on that day president bush noted that it was roughly a year after the berlin wall came down and said that this legislation, quote, takes a sledgehammer to another wall, one which has for too many generations separated americans with disabilities from the freedoms they could glimpse but not grasp. for too long our nation has kept americans with disabilities dependent when they allerned for independence. -- yearned for independence. and the americans with disability act has given them the tools to do just that. to quench their theirs -- thirst for life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. it has changed lives for millions and will do so for many years to come. i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the rules require the chair reminds all persons in the gallery that they are here as guests of the
house and any manifestation of approval or disapproval of the proceedings is in violation of the rules of the house. for what purpose does the gentleman from rhode island rise? without objection. mr. kennedy: thank you. mr. speaker, one of the peculiar yarets -- peculiarities of larmente procedure is all discussion of the floor on the house is directed to the person who occupies the speaker's podium, but it is on rare occasion when the significance of the individual presiding over house proceedings outweighs the proceedings themselves. this is such a time. it is with great pride that i stand here on this historic occasion as my close friend, jim langevin, presides over the house from the speaker's rostrum. jim is an individual embodies the best of the american people. he is the personification of the word courage.
i have known jim since our time together 2349 rhode island -- together in the rhode island state legislature and i have been fortunate to witness his overcoming obstacle after obstacle throughout his life. as a teenager jim made a commitment to a life of public service, seeking a career as a police officer when a cruel twist of fate denied him the path he envisioned, the easy road, the easy road would have been to give up. but jim would not be disswayed. instead he drew on a spirit of perseverance that any lesser of us would have struggled to find. may i ask unanimous consent to have the requisite five minutes that i was initially -- the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman may complete his thoughts.
the gentleman is recognized. mr. kennedy: how much time do i have? the speaker pro tempore: the chair expects further debate during extension of the rules. the gentleman may conclude his thoughts. mr. kennedy: how much time do i have? the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized for 15 seconds. mr. kennedy: who is in charge now? all right. i'll get my chance later. and you better be ready. because there will be no holding back then.
god bless you. i'm so proud to be your colleague. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman's time has expired. who seeks recognition? for what purpose does the gentleman from south carolina rise? >> permission to address the house for one minute. revise and extend. the speaker pro tempore: without objection. mr. wilson: mr. speaker, it's particularly fitting that i would be with you today and that my late father-in-law, state representative julian dusenberry who was a hero of the battle of okinawa was shot by a sniper, but he continued his service from the wheelchair in the statehouse of south carolina. i have always appreciated your courage and want to join with congressman kennedy to recognize your churge and courage to serve. thank you, god bless you. . the friday front page headline of hilton head, south carolina, highlights the legit concerns
of -- legitimate concerns of a tax hike. since the stimulus bill became law, 2.4 million americans have lost their jobs. the promise of unemployment not to exceed 8% was broken as unemployment soared to 8%. the failed borrow and spend tax policy cry out for where are the jobs. we need both parties to promote small business creation. president kennedy cut taxes and jobs grew. president reagan cut taxes and more jobs were created. republicans have offered positive alternatives using the proven policies from both parties which actually promote jobs. in conclusion, god bless our troops and we will never forget september 11 and the global war on terrorism. the speaker pro tempore: for what purpose does the gentlewoman from california rise? >> to address the house for one minute and to revise and extend. the speaker pro tempore:
without objection. mrs. capps: mr. speaker, the honorable mr. langevin, i rise to recognize the 20th anniversary of the americans with disabilities act and offer my strong support for h.res. 1505. 20 years ago the a.d.a. declared that the millions of americans living with disabilities had a right to reasonable accommodations in the workplace and access to public buildings. in doing so we acknowledge for the first time the civil rights of these americans who live independently to fully participate in all aspects of our society, our schools, our businesses, our communities. today we extend that participation to the speaker's chair, and i want to acknowledge our colleague, congressman langevin. his place today managing debate over the people's house is long overdue. when george h.w. bush signed the a.d.a. in 1990, the late senator ted kennedy said, "equal justice under the law is not a privilege but a fundamental birthright in america."
i couldn't agree more. we must protect the rights of men and women regardless of ability, mental capacity or physicality by removing barriers for people with disabilities, we allow america to be a society where justice -- equal justice prevails. i urge support for h.res. 1504, and i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: for what purpose does the gentlewoman from north carolina rise? ms. foxx: i ask permission to address the house for one minute. the speaker pro tempore: without objection, so ordered. ms. foxx: thank you, mr. speaker. i want to congratulate you, also, today on this historic day and also all those who have made this day possible by making the house much more accessible to everyone who serves in the house. but, mr. speaker, i must change the subject and say that in five months the hardworking taxpayers of america will get hit with the largest tax increase in american history if this congress doesn't act to
stall it. tax hikes will go up across the board. this is complotely unacceptable. during this time of economic turmoil, tax hikes will fall hard on small businesses that have already born the brunt of this economy. this is the community that represents our best hope from emerging from this recession. increasing their taxes now will be an economic poison now that will kill economic growth and job creation. after all, mr. speaker, what tax increase ever created a job? i yield back.
the speaker pro tempore: for what purpose does the gentleman from massachusetts rise? >> mr. speaker, by the direction of the committee on appropriations, i present a privileged report for filing under the rule. the speaker pro tempore: the clerk will report the title. the clerk: report to accompany h.r. 5850, a bill making appropriations for the departments of transportation and housing and urban development and related agencies for the fiscal year ending september 30, 2011, and for other purposes. the speaker pro tempore: referred to the union calendar and ordered printed. pursuant to clause 1 of rule 21, all points of order are reserved. pursuant to clause 8 of rule 20, the chair will postpone further proceedings today on
motions to suspend the rules on which a recorded vote or the yeas and nays are ordered or on which the vote is octobered to under clause 6 of rule 20. record votes on postponed questions will be taken after 6:00 p.m. today. for what purpose does the gentleman from colorado seek recognition? >> mr. speaker, i move that the house suspend the rules and agree to house resolution 1505 as amended. the speaker pro tempore: the clerk will report the title of the resolution. the clerk: house resolution 1504, resolution recognizing and honoring the 20th anniversary of the enactment of the americans with disabilities act of 1990. the speaker pro tempore: pursuant to the rule, the gentleman from colorado, mr. polis, and the gentleman from wisconsin, mr. petrie, will each control -- mr. petri, will each control 20 minutes. the chair recognizes the gentleman from colorado. mr. polis: mr. speaker, i ask unanimous consent that all
members may have five legislative days to revise and extend their remarks and insert extraneous material on house resolution 1504 into the record. the speaker pro tempore: without objection, so ordered. mr. polis: i'm pleased to recognize the leader, mr. hoyer, for one minute. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. hoyer: i thank the gentleman for yielding. speaker langevin, i congratulate you on taking the podium. i congratulate you your extraordinary service to the people of rhode island, the people of our country, and i congratulate you for being an example. the can-do spirit that has made america such a great country. mr. speaker, i'm glad to be here on the 20th anniversary of the enact of the americans with disabilities act. and i'm proud to be here on the floor with tony quello from the state of california. tony quello was the whip on our
side of the aisle for a number of years, elected into that position very shortly after he took his seat in the congress of the united states. he's a person of extraordinary ability, extraordinary energy, extraordinary focus and extraordinary accomplishment. but early in his life he fell off in a farming accident, a tractor, and injured his head. as a result of that traumatic injury, he became an epileptic, and because of that his lifetime dream of becoming a priest was not available to him. that was something of great trauma to him.
however, he overcame that, came to congress and has made his life's work opening up america to those who have been discriminated against, to those who have been shut out, to those for whom the pursuit of happiness was made either impossible or very difficult. by the barriers and prejudice that existed. 20 years ago today, the first president bush signed the americans with disabilities act. i was proud to help pass that legislation, but much more i was proud to see our country come together to rededicate itself to the principles of equal opportunity irrespective of race or color, national origin, religion or any other arbitrary distinction, including disability.
the a.d.a. made it possible for american with disabilities to use the same public places and to succeed as their talent and drive allows them to. 50 million americans have gone through the doors of equal opportunity that it opened. when i first heard that figure it sounded awfully high to me because i thought about disabilities being somebody, who, like mr. langevin, as a result of an accident, had been forced to use a wheelchair for mobility purposes. i was used to thinking of disabilities as somebody who used a cane because they had no sight or somebody who used a hearing aid because their hearing was diminished or nonexistent. helen keller, of course, taught us a great powerful lesson about overcoming disabilities, but i learned quickly that
someone has a disability that nobody else see. mr. coelho is on the floor. i ask you to identify mr. coelho by his disability you couldn't so but the privilege to his disability was in fact very present. so the americans with disabilities act not only dealt with perceived -- excuse me -- actual visual impairments but also perceived impairments. we know that those doors are not all the way open, however. we strengthen the act -- we strengthened the act in 2008 and we need to live up to its enduring principles, whether it's making the house rostrum wheelchair accessible -- thank you, madam speaker, for your leadership for making sure that jim langevin, our colleague, who has the ability to preside, has the accessibility of the
rostrum so that he can exercise that ability. that's what the disability act was all about. i want to thank my colleagues who helped make the a.d.a. possible, tony coelho, in the house, was our leader, our spark plug, our visionary, and he enlisted many of the rest of us to assist in this effort. the disability community who fought so hard, who showed so much courage, who spent so much time to let members of congress know that discrimination to which they were subjecting. -- subjected. i believe this act is an act which will continue to make america a better country, will continue to make america a country that is in fact living
out the core of its principle which is equal opportunity for all. under the law. i want to thank a number of people, some of whom we'll see further today, mr. markey, who was so critical on communications issues. i want to thank my friend, jim sensenbrenner, who sits on the floor here, who was a leader on the judiciary committee, a critical component for the passage of the americans with disabilities act. i want to thank my friend, steve bartlett, who himself was a member of congress, not now, but was my partner in coordinating the various committees and subcommittees and worked together with me in nonpartisan -- it bipartisan -- it nothing to do with party or politics. it had to do with our country's principles. i want to thank augustus hawkins, who was chair of the education and labor committee, major owens, matthew martinez,
steve bartlett, congressman fawell. i want to thank john dingell. edward markey, the chair of the telecommunications subcommittee. tom lukin and norm lint, bob whitaker, matt renaldo. glen anderson, who is chair of the public works committee. and robert roe, ranking democrat. and norm ma neta. every time you see a bus accessible or train station accessible or an airplane that is accessible, remember norm lint. remember norm me neta who made that possible. and that was very difficult because there was a cost associated to it and we wanted to make sure there was a reasonable cost to be imposed, but we knew that in the long run that investment would pay off for america. i want to thank john paul hemersmith as well. the chair of the judiciary committee committee at that time.
hamilton fisch, and, of course, jim sensenbrenner. there were many, many others. this resolution recognizes the adoption of a bill 20 years ago. jim langevin is the living, breathing, participating example of how that statute made a difference. not just for jim langevin but for all of us who will benefit from the contribution that the jim langevins of america will make. and we ought to be proud in america that this bill is now an example to all the world and has been used as a model by many nations in the world that they have followed to make their societies more accessible and make the lives of those with disabilities fuller and more productive. . there is much that needs to be done. those with disabilities are more likely to live in poverty.
those are disabilities are still more likely not to be able to get a job. those with disabilities are still confronted with a lack of access to some facets of our society. so as we recognize this anniversary, as the president tonight will honor the 41st president of the united states, george bush, and his son, who signed the amendments act, both president bush have played a role in making acceptibility a reality in america. as we celebrate this day, let us recommit ourselves as our founding fathers talked about equality of opportunity, and as we have seen for the 200-plus years of the existence of our constitutional democracy, that periodically we have had to
take steps to make sure that the promise of opportunity was the reality of opportunity. speaker langevin, congratulations to you. congratulations to our country. congratulations to our citizens as we all work together, make this a more perfect union. i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from wisconsin. >> thank you, mr. speaker. i rise in support of house resolution 1504 and yield myself such time as i may consume. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. petri: we are here to commemorate the 20th anniversary of the enact of the americans with disabilities act and we celebrate also the positive changes in our workplaces, our public facilities, and indeed in our nation's understanding of the
challenges and the pry um of of individuals with disabilities. the americans with disabilities act is an example of bipartisanship at its best. members on both sides of the aisle came together 20 years ago to craft meaningful protections for members of our society who, up until this law's enactment, had too off been denied the opportunities and accommodations necessary for them to thrive. in the 20 years since the americans with disabilities act became law, we have seen firsthand the contributions made by individuals with disabilities when obstacles are removed and ignorance gives way to understanding. by simply leveling the playing field, our society is richer. this law has been a remarkable success, but with the passage of time and need for improvement, that's why members on both sides of the aisle came together once again in 2008,
modernized the law, and ensure its protections today, fulfill its promise made 20 years ago. i applaud the brave individuals who 20 years ago fought to shine a light on the discrimination and lack of basic access afforded to many individuals with disabilities. i applaud the legislators on both sides of the aisle who heard those stories and who responded with this landmark legislation. i also applaud the employers, state and local governments, and facilities owners across the nation that have taken the letter and the spirit of this law to heart and opened their doors and extended their opportunities to all americans regardless of disabilities. today we take the time to appreciate how this house and indeed how our nation as a whole have benefited from the americans with disabilities act.
i'm pleased to join my colleagues in support of this resolution. i reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman reserves the balance of his time. the gentleman from colorado. mr. polis: mr. speaker, i'm pleased to recognize the gentleman from rhode island, mr. kennedy -- mr. speaker, i'd like to yield myself such time as i may consume. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. polis: mr. speaker, i rise today in support of house resolution 1504, which recognizes and honors the 20th anniversary of the signing of the americans with disabilities act of 1990. the most historic piece of legislation affecting the civil rights of people with disabilities in our nation's history. prior to its passage, too many people with disabilities received unequal treatment. didn't have the same kinds of opportunity as other americans. faced inaccessible facilities and services, in both the public and private sectors. many americans with disabilities faced
discrimination in education and employment, couldn't support their families, couldn't access jobs. as a result the americans with disabilities were denied the opportunity to fully participate in society. because they were not afforded the same rights as other americans take for granted. the hard work of disability advocates and members of congress, many of whom being recognized today, present and past, culminated with the bipartisan effort to craft and pass the americans with disabilities act. since its passage the a.d.a. has worked to fulfill the nation's goal, equal opportunity, independent living, economic self-sufficiency, and full participation. the a.d.a. prohibits discrimination against individuals with disabilities across all sectors of society. it reduces barriers, promotes access, and helps people with disabilities. that friends our friends, families, and ourselves fully participate in society. more than 50 million americans directly benefit from the a.d.a. while there is undoubtedly more work to be done to ensure full incluesive of all people with
disabilities, today we celebrate a major milestone, 20 years of civil rights under this act and a firm its ideals and the work ahead. mr. speaker, i'd like to thank leader hoyer for introducing this important resolution. i once again express my support for house resolution 1504 honoring the 20th anniversary of the americans with disabilities act. i reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman reserves the balance of his time. the gentleman from wisconsin. mr. petri: i yield such time as he may consume to my distinguished colleague from the state of wisconsin, f. james sensenbrenner. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from wisconsin virginia tech. mr. sensenbrenner: thank you, mr. speaker. -- the gentleman from wisconsin, is recognized. mr. sensenbrenner: thank you, mr. speaker. i promise you there will be no points of order of order from the republican side while you're in the chair. i also rise to support house resolution 1504, which celebrates the 20th anniversary
of the americans with disabilities act. it's important to acknowledge the achievements of the disability community and its allies have accomplished in the past two decades. this anniversary represents another positive step taken ensuring that all americans are included in our communities and places of work. it's been a long road to guarantee that our fellow americans find equal protection under the law. on the signing of the a.d.a., president george h.w. bush said that the shameful law of exclusion finally come -- walls of exclusion finally come tumbling down. through bipartisan efforts, barriers that far too long kept disabled americans from fully participating in our communities did indeed crumble with the passing of one of the most effective civil rights laws ever. because of this monumental piece of legislation, our country has been able to capitalize from the talents of millions of americans with disabilities in the workplace.
the a.d.a. has protected the rights of children and students who once encountered educational discrimination and barriers. the accessibility of buildings, public transportation, and sidewalks has made our society more inclusive. the achievements of the a.d.a. and the thousands of advocates who fought tirelessly for its passage represents the country's endless commitment to empower all american citizens with disabilities with the capacity to fully participate in his or her community. in response to several supreme court decisions that restricted a.d.a. coverage for individuals with diabetes, epilepsy, and cancer, to name a few, in 2008 congress passed the americans with disabilities amendment act. this legislation broadened the definition of disabled and brought more people with disabilities under the umbrella of protection and reaffirmed congress' promise to integrate people with disabilities.
furthermore, it's important to recognize the change in societal attitudes with people with disabilities as a result of the a.d.a. since its passage more and more americans enjoy increased educational employment opportunities. these opportunities have produced higher graduation rates and higher employment rates. because of the a.d.a., the disabled are no longer confined to isolation. we now see our fellow americans with disabilities in our restaurants, sporting events, schools, and places of work. as of today, this congress will see a fellow congressman from rhode island and quadraplegic, mr. langevin, preside over the house. because of changes made to the speaker's rostrum, this house now joins the ranks of thousands of buildings across the nation that have made -- architectural changes which serve to increase accessibility for people with disabilities.
this is a proud moment for this congress and reflects the progress that has been made in the past two decades. the a.d.a. along with passage of the a.d.a. amendments act reminds us that this progress has been made over the last 20 years as well as the continued efforts that must be made to advocate for people with disabilities who still experience discrimination. i urge my colleagues to join me in passing house resolution 1504 and yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from wisconsin reserves the balance of his time. the gentleman from colorado. mr. polis: mr. speaker, it's my honor to recognize the gentleman from rhode island, mr. kennedy, for seven minutes. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. kennedy: just want to make sure if it's all right if i could talk. the speaker pro tempore: for seven minutes. mr. kennedy: thank you, mr. speaker. my good friend and colleague, jim langevin. i rise to support 1504,
commemorating the a.d.a. mr. speaker, you are the embodiment of what the a.d.a. meant to accomplish. to accomplish the great mission of america, the widened circle of opportunity for more and more americans to participate in the american dream. your servants in congress exemplifies the elements of the american dream, the potential that exists when we are lifted by what we believe in ourselves , rather than what we are told by others. the spirit of possibility also represents this country itself. however daunting appearing the challenges that loom before us, we must not forget that this nation was built on possibility . and founded on the principles of overcoming overwhelming
obstacles, the true strength of our nation is derived not only from the fact that we are the most diverse nation in the world, but we are also the most inclusive nation in the world. in much of the world, minority populations continue to be persecuted and discriminated against. yet in america people exercise their right, guaranteed under the constitution, and the 1965 voting rights act, to cast their ballot for bram -- barack obama who received more votes from more americans than any other previous presidential candidate in american history. it's nearly 50 years ago that my uncle entered the white house and among many challenges he issued to the american people was the civil rights act. the true strength of our nation
is not derived from the fact that that is our big challenge but that what we must keep going forward. he said, the heart of the question is whether all americans are to be afforded equal rights and equal opportunity. whether we are going to be -- treat our fellow americans as we ourselves want to be treated. in short, he cannot enjoy the full and free life which all of us want, then who amongst us would be content to have the color of his skin change or in this case, to have the physical condition that they are in change and abide by that situation that they are living in. as he goes on, who amongst us would then be content with the counsel of patience and delay? with this anniversary of the
a.d.a. perhaps it's time we think about all the new ranks of those with disabilities. our returning veterans. suffering from ptsd. i'll never forget the day we passed the mental health parity bill. the most eloquent speech that i heard that day was given by none other than the man in the rostrum, jim langevin. he came down on the floor of the house, he said to his colleagues, all of you see my disability, i'm in a wheelchair. but for millions of americans, the disability they face is no less paralyzing in their lives. . this disability comes in the form of a neurological disorder, a brain illness.
to them they have a very real disability, but we don't treat it as such. that's why we need to pass legislation prohibiting discrimination against the mentally ill. jim langevin carried the day on that mental health parity bill. i will always be grateful for that. today we stand at the new frontier, as my uncle said, of the possibility of scientific break through, -- breakthrough, to help our veterans through their mental illness and traumatic brain disorder. i say that the new challenge of the disability movement is not to stand by with the patience and delay that too many of us
have witnessed when it comes to research. now, research can see something esoteric. but research is not esoteric to someone who's paralyzed in a wheelchair, who is looking forward to the day when we can regenerate the spinal cord and allow them to step out of that wheelchair. research to someone with alzheimer's, for them to be able to restore their memory and restore their ability to come back to their family. that's as personal as it gets. research that allows us to reconnect the wirings in the brain of a family that has children with autism. kneel armstrong in his famous
quote when he landed on the moon, an objective people thought was unrlistic, they thought it was impossible. but the ited states got behind that mission and we carried the day because we're the united states. how fitting it would be if we could apply neil armstrong's quote to not only putting a man on the moon but apply that quote one small step for man, one giant leap for mankind, to those veterans when it comes to them being able to say i stepped out of my wheelchair, i was able to step out of my bed, i was able to step out of my
house because this country went ahead with science. nothing is more personal. and just later in about three weeks i'm going to celebrate the anniversary of my father's passing. what people don't know is that i marvel the fact that i had an extra year with my dad that no one expected because of a neurosurgeon gave me that year. to me that neurosummeron and modern science gets as personal as it can get because it gave me someone i love for an extra year. ladies and gentlemen, let's harness the innovation technology that we have on behalf of our veterans. if we don't have an urgency on behalf of them to work to set them free from being prisoners of their war injuries, held hostage from their trauma of
serving this country, then what are we going to get worked up for? ladies and gentlemen, i want to thank people like jim langevin who fought the fight and have been an example. isn't it time we continue to stand by them and continue that fight? let's pass this resolution but let's rededicate ourselves to taking this fight not only to helping to make sure people don't fall behind but also making surthat they move forward to a brighter future, something that they can look forward to and that's what america has been all about. thank you, jim. with you. i look forward to many years ahead of you serving this great country of ours. i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the chair thanks the gentleman from
rhode island. the gentleman from wisconsin. mr. petri: thank you, mr. speaker. i yield ch time as she may consume to the genewoman from the state of washington, kathy mcmorris rodgers. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlewoman is recognized. mrs.cmorris rodgers: you truly are an inspiration to us all. i want to join in the celebrion of the 20th anniversary of the americans with disabilities act. the a.d.a., which was signed 20 years ago today, was one of the most important civ rights achievements in american history. and for me, it represents the empourment. and it represents encouragement. this landmark bill gave 50 million americans, including my sown, cole, who was born with down syndrome three years ago, the opportunity to live the american dream. through the a.d.a., cole and so many others like him were given
the chance to fully participate in our society, including better opportunities for education, employment and independent living. and as cole's mom, i'm so thankful for the manwho worked hard many, manyears so that my son in 2010 could have morepportunities, more resources and more support than ever. this was a bipartisan effort supported by democrats and republicans in congress, signed by a republican president, and i want to thank the members who are still in congress, including majority leader hoyer and representative sensenbrenner, as well as former majority whip tony coelho, for their tremendous leadership on this issue. i also want to thank the incredible community of disabled -- the disabilities community in america, a community that welcomed me and my family with open arms, for all of the work that they've done, for advocating this bill.
they're ordinary citizens who by working together acheast extraordinary things. we've -- achieved extraordinary things. let's use today's anniversary as an inspiration for creating more, a more perfect union, for americans with disabilities and for all americans. thank you, mr. speaker. i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from colorado. mr. polis: i ask if the gentleman fr wisconsin has additional speakers? mr. petri: i have done. mr. polis: does the other side yield back? mr. petri: i'd be happy to yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. the gentleman from colorado. mr. polis: mr. speaker, again, i'd like to encourage my colleagues to support this important step and march forward for civil ghts in our country, celebrating the work behind us and getting to work to complete the task of ensuring that every american has access to the great opportunities this country
offers. and i yield back the balance of my time and ca the question. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. the question is will the house suspend the rules and agree to house resolution 1504, as amended. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair, 2/3 having responded in the affirmative -- mr. polis: mr. speaker, i request the yeas and nays. the speaker pro tempore: the yeas and nays are requested. all those in favor of taking this vote by the yeas and nays will rise and remain standing until counted. a sufficient number having arisen, the yeas and nays are ordere pursuant to clause 8 of rule 20 and the chair's prior announcement, further proceedings on this motion will be postponed. the chair lays before the hoe a communication. the clerk: the honorable the speaker, house of
representives. madam, pursuant to the permsion granted in clause 2-h of rule 2 of the rules of the u.s. house of representatives, the secretary received a message from the secretary of the senate on july 26, 2010, at 10:21 a.m., that the senate disagrees to the senate amendment h.r. 4899, that the senate passed without amendment, h.r. 4684. with best wishes i am. signed sincerely, lorraine c. miller, clerk of the house. the speaker pro tempore: the chair lays before the house the following enrolled bill. the clerk: senate 1053, an act to amend the national law enforcement museum act to extend the termination date. the speaker pro tempore: for what purpose does the gentleman from massachusetts seek recognition?
>> i move that the house suspend the rules and agree to h.r. 3101, the 21st century century communications and video programming act of 2010, as amended. the speaker pro tempore: the clerk will report the title of the bill. the clerk: h.r. 3101, a bill to ensure that individuals with disabilities have access to emerging internet protocol-based communication and video programming technologies in the 21st century. the speaker pro tempore: pursuant to the rule, the gentleman from massachusetts, mr. markey, and the gentleman from florida, mr. stearns, will each control 20 minutes. the chair recognizes the gentleman from massachusetts. mr. markey: mr. speaker, i ask unanimous consent that all members may have five legislative days to revise and extend their remarks and include extraneous materials in the record. the speaker pro tempore: without objection, so ordered. mr. markey: mr. speaker, i yield myself such time as i may
consume. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. markey: mr. speaker, it is great to see you, my colleague from new england, presiding in the chair toy at this historic moment. you are always going to have a permanent place in the history of our country. you are a great leader and inspiration to all of us and of everythinghat we are doing today is inspired by your incredible personal courage. with the increble example that your service to the house is providing, i am confident that you will not be the last who will sit up there and
preside but only the first in a long line. now, since i introduced the legislation before us today, we have engaged in a bipartisan, extensive and constructive process with stakeholders to find common ground on the legislative language and to move forward with this bill. i want to thank the leadership of chairman henry waxman, without whom we would not be here today, rick boucher, who worked over the last year to construct thislegislation before us, to cliff stearns from florida, who worked in a bipartisan fashion to craft this historic legislation which we are about to consider, to joe barton from texas, who ensured that from the very beginning this would be a bipartisan effort that we would
put together in order to pass the historic legislation that is today before us. i would like to think that helen keller and annie sullivan are looking down on us here this afternoon and that they are smiling. this picture of the two of them was taken in 1888 in brewster, massachusetts on cape cod. i am so proud to have the perkins school for the blind where annie sullivan graduated and helen keller was educated in my congressional district in watertown, massachusetts. when they met 122 years ago they were a stunning study in contrast. alabama and massachusetts, a
daughter of the south, a young woman of irish descent traveling south from boston. nevertheless, they changed the world together, these two miracle workers. they shattered expectations about what a person who was deaf or blind could achieve. now, i am an american of irish heritage from boston, and my mother was a sullivan, and she always told me that her relatives were a particularly smart d determined lot, but i could only imagine the bottomless resolve and resilience annie sullivan must have needed to navigate her way in the south in the aftermath of the civil war. whether it was a braille reader or a broadband connection access to -- or a broadband connection, access to technology is not a political
issue. it is a participation issue. each of us should be able to participate in the world to the fullest extent possible and the latest communications and video services and devices can enrich and ennoble how americans experience and enjoy their lives. we're debating this bill today on the 20th an verse arery of the americans with disabilities act which the first president george bush signed into law, underscoring the nonpartisan nature of this vital issue. the 20th anniversary is an opportunity to look back and to reflect on the progress which we've made. coming out of the energy and commerce committee's telecommunications subcommittee over the last two decades have been a whole series of legislative initiatives aimed at broadening the disabled community's access to technology that can help them
do things that most americans take for granted. in 1990, we made sure that american whors deaf could make telephone calls. in 1990 we mandated that thrfings shows -- that television shows be close captioned for the -- closed captioned for the deaf so they could enjoy the same programming as other people. many deaf and hard of hearing people say closed captioning is the single modern accessibility technology that has changed their lives the most. in 1996,e inserted language that required accessibility of all telephone equipment, including telephones, caller i.d. and related services all be accessable. two decades ago, americans with disabilities couldn't get around with buildings weren't
wheelchair accessible. today, they can't get around without being web accessible. that's what we're talking about here today. 20 years ago, the a.d.a. mandated physical ramps into buildings. today, individuals with disabilities need online ramps to the internet so that they can get to the web from wherever they happen to be. from the time of helen keller and annie sullivan through the americans with disabilities act to closed captioning for television programming and the ability of the deaf to make telephone calls and now to the 21st century communications and video accessibility act on the floor today, we have made important progress. we have made from braille to broadcast tv. from broadband to the
blackber. we have move to end sure that in each area, and today we move to the internet to sure that everyone in our couldn't arery has access -- that every in our country has act ss to this technology. annie sullivan used special language she spelled in helen keller's palm. in the 21st century are, we moved from tracing letters of the alphabet in a palm to navigating a palm pilot. we must make sure that all of these modern devices are are accessible. annie sullivan was an incredibly dedicated and determined teacher. now, technology needs to be th teacher. the constant companion providing instruction and access to the world and opportunities that otherwise would be out of reach.
by age 10, helen keller had mastered reading, braille and manual sign language. she then wanted toearn how to speak. at the school -- school for the deaf in boston, helen took lessons, then annie took over and worked with helen. helen did learn to speak. and helen keller is still speaking to us today. about how all of us should make the most of our abilities and paicipate in society to the fullest, but we need the technology to make that possible for every american. the bill we are considering today significantly increases accessibility for americans with disabilities to the uh indy intention -- indy
spenceable telecommunications tools of the 21st century. by making web access easier through smart phones, enabling american whors blind tone joy tv fully through audible deprescription of the -- description of the on screen action. making cable tv program guides and menus accessible to people with vision loss. providing american whors deaf the ability to watch new tv programs online with the captions included. mandating that remote controls have a button or a similar mechanism to easily access the closed captioning on broadcast and pay tv. requiring that telecom equipment used to make calls over the internet is compatible with hearing aids. for low income americans who are deaf and blind, providing a
share of the total of $10 million per year of funding to purchase internet access and telecom services so these individuals can more fully participate in society. today's miracle worker, today's technology, today's ability to be able to provide with the technologies that people need today is one that as we move forward, we have to make sure has the accessibilit for all amicans. and that technology is the ipad. the ipad is something that today makes it possible for annie sullivan and helen keller to be able to access with a touch the technology that the helen tellers and annie
sullivs of -- helen tellers and ab -- helen kellers and annie sullivs of today need. it's not about touching the palm like it was today but about touching the pad, uching these devices, having to speak to them, being able to speak back to have a conversation with the rest of us in society this morning, i did a teleconference with a group of students from the perkins school for the blind and the carroll center for the blind. these young people were born before president bush signed a.d.a. into law. these two schools are led by two extraordinary visionaries who serve with amazing passion and vision. opportunity, independence,
equal access for all, that's what this legislation is all about. these are timeless american values that were as relevant when annie sullivan and helen keller were working together as they are today. when we maximize marties pation for all americans, we move forward as a couldn't arery. when we expand the circle of inclusion, we evolve as a people. when we increase accessibility for americans with disabilities, we get closer to fulfilling the ideals of our nation's founders and all men and women are endowed by their creator with certain inalienable rights that among these are life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness this legislation which we are considering today is intended to increase access for all ericans with disabilits to the technological tools needed to succeed in today's interconnected world. ain, i want to thank the
entire disabled community, the deaf and the blind communities, that have advocated for years for this incredible revolution that is happening here on the floor of the house of representatives today. we are in your debt for being the advocates, for being the witnesses so that we make this change today. again, i want to thank mr. waxman, chairman waxman, mr. boucher, mr. barton and mr. stearns and all the members who worked together to make today the great historic success it's going to be. at this point, mr. speaker, i would like to reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: think gentleman reserves thealance of his time. the gentleman from florida. mr. speaker, let me also thank mr. markey for his eloquent remarks and also his steadfast in pushing this bill. mr. stearns: he's been work og then -- on this bill for many
years. often when a bill comes to the floor, many members don't realize the amount of wo that goes into a bill like this. i know when i was on the telecom committee, the ranking member before mr. markeytalked to us about this, i'm glad it's cullmy nated today on th20th anniversary of the americans with disabilities act. i also want to congratulate the gentleman from rhode island for being in the chair, i think it's important and appropriate. i think many of us have walked the halls of congress and seen veterans in wheelchairs, we've seen men and women without legs, arms, hands, some of them practically blind. shouldn't they have the opportunity to come back from afghanistan and iraq and have the full benefitsf this electronic media? before this bill passed, it
might not have had the complete opportunity, but now with this bill they will. so i rise in strong support of h.r. 3101, the 21st century communications video accessibility act. we know there's all kinds of new devices coming on, mr. markey mentioned the ipad. and as i mentioned, it's important that people with disabilities are not left behind, have access and the opportunity to enjoy the wide variety of technology and in many cases, the internet will be lifesaving, through telemedicine, ways to help peopleho are handicapped through emergency cools and ultimately, the d-spectrum, when we have that kind of spectrum set aside just for safety and security. whenever you do a bill like this, it gets complicated. people want to use a lot of mandates for the united states government to mandate through
the f.c.c. as mr. markey pointed out with the ipad, oftentimes, industry can come to the front and voluntarily do it. we in the united states congress if we mandate certain technologies, we attempt to pick winners or losers. the best approach to ensuring accessibility is to establish accessibility goals, but not dictate how to accomplish them. we need to encourage innovation to flourish and my colleagues, bill does that. now, obviously, every legislation we bring up here is not perfect. this bill obviously has some, probably, improvement by certain industries. nevertheless, i think as mr. markey pointed out through the bipartisan process we have had here, republicans and democrats, we achieved a consensus, which is not
altogether an everyday occurrence here in congress. so i think in many ways we can compliment ourselves both as democrats and republicans that we came together on a very important issue which affects a huge number of manufacturing companies in this united states and throughout the world. we came together in a consensus. i would like to thank chairman waxman for doing this, subcommittee chairman boucher from virginia, joe barton, the ranking member from texas and my staff, particularly neil who worked with the staff to bring this consens together. the collaboration of this kind doesn't often happen in such a short amount of time. my main concern was that the legislation was extremely broad in its original scope and included unnecessary mandates. changes that were adopted at the committee markup addressed many of my concerns. language was add that
explicitly states that the relevant sections shall not be construed to require every feature and every function of every device or service to be accessible for every disability. so that the record is clear regarding the intention that underlies this bill, i want to offer guidance to the f.c.c. regarding the way it should view several key provisions in this legislation. first, my colleaes, the bill creates a new, achiefable standard to gue manufactures and service providers' efforts to provide accessibility to the disabled. under section 255 of the communications act, telecommunications services and equipment must be accessible if the provision of accessibility is readily achieveable. as introduced, h. are r. 3101 proprosed -- proposed moving to a significantly higher standard under which accessibility would be required unless it imposed
an undue burden. the achieveability standard we achieved is a comp mies, a very important compromise between these two positions. the committee also recognized that it is not necessary for a manufactured service provider to make every piece of equipment or service accessible if it offers or directs such person to functionally equivalent accessible alternative to the service in question. this was a source of concern and confusion by many members in contention early in the legislative process. and i'm pleased that this bill we are considering today resolves this issue by adopting clarifying language that makes this point ia clear and unambiguous manner. finally, my colleagues, the bill before us also recognizes that advanced communication services and applicatis may be offered by third parties and that manufacturers and network operators should not be held responsible for ensuring these
third party advance communications comply with the act. thus, section 2 makes clear that no person is liable for a violation of this act to the extent that such persons transmit, routes or provides intermediate or storage for content or communications or provides an information location tool used to obtain access to condepartment or -- content or information. these are the components for a sound bill. as i said previously, this legislation is not perfect but it is much, much improved due to the hard work of industry, the disability community who came togetheand the staff on both sides of the aisle. this legislation, mr. chairman, mr. speaker, goes a long, long way to ensuring that people with disabilities can utilize all the new and exciting product, services and applications in the years ahead. i ur its passage. and for those veterans coming
home, this will ensure that you have access to those new financial -- those new video, those new devices that are going to make your life a lot easier. with that, mr. speaker, i reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman reserves the bance of his time. the gentleman from massachusetts. mr. markey: the legislation would not be here today without the incredible leadership of the chairman of the energy and commerce committee. he resolves the most meddlesome issues in the final week for us to bring this historic legislation here to the floor. i'd like to yield three minutes to the gentleman from california, mr. waxman. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from california is recognized for three minutes. mr. waxman: mr. speaker, i'm pleased to rise in support of this very important legislation. it was in 1934 when the communications act was adopted that it set out that they -- that they would have the goal in this country of making
available so far as possible to people without discrimination on the base of color, religion, national origin or sex all rapid, efficient, nationwide and worldwide wire and communication service. well, this legislation before us today furthers this core principle by ensuring that americans with disabilities can access the latest communications technology. it's only fitting that we're taking this bill up today, the 20thnniversary of the landmark americans with disabilities act. although the a.d.a. remains a critical protection for americans with disabilities, our communications laws have not been updated since 1996 when congress required that plain old telephone service be accessible to individuals with disabilities. 14 years is more than a lifetime in technology policy,
especially in the internet age. the world of communications has been transformed, and we need to update relevant laws so that individuals with disabilities can share in the amazing benefits these products and services have to offer. h.r. 3101 updates these laws in a number of importan ways. among other things, the bill requires that advanced communication services, such as video conferencing and text messaging be accessible to individuals with disabilities. it ensures that internet browsers on smart phones are accessible and that tv programming distributed over the internet contains captions. it reinstates video description rules designed to ensure that individuals with vision impairment have better access to tv programming. and it ensures the emergency alert scrolls that warn
consumers of hazardous weather and other conditions can be heard by those who have vision impairments. although the legislation requires access to up-to-date communication devices and video programming for individuals with disabilities, it's crafted to allow the industry with a great flexibility in achievin these goals. given the pace of technological change, industry should be allow to meet the bill's requirements by utilizing the best, least expensive technology or application so not only is the legislation the right thing to do for the millions of americans with disability it's -- disabilities, it's friendly to business and encourages innovative solutions. it's aid like to recognize the bill's sponsor, mr. markey, for his ongoing dedication and passion for this cause. i want to commend chairman boucher for his leadership in guiding the bill through the
commtee -- subcommittee. i want to thank ranking member barton and ranking member stearns and their staff for their contributions to this bill. as i said when we marked up this legislation at the energy and commerce committee, h.r. 3101 is truly bipartisan, consensus measure. demonstrates what congress can accomplish when we work together. h.r. 3101 will improve the lives of millions of americans, and on this 20th anniversary o the americans with disabilities act i urge every member to vote in support of this measure. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from florida. mr. stearns: mr. speaker, i just want to speak briefly to follow-up with the gentleman from massachusetts when he displayed in his hand the ipad. and i think it's a good example of what apple has done with the
ipad and how they voluntarily went about to help the people who are impaired by sight and hearing. they took the necessary steps to make certain that their product and their apligscations are accessible to all people -- applications are accessible to all people. for example, when you look at the ipad, people think that it's revolutionary. it gives you in a touch of the fingers an opportunity to go through and look at newspapers and magazines, to go on the internet, to check your email effortlessly. it's sort of using technology as a breakthrough. is it possible that this breakthrough technology could help people who are disabled? absolutely. for example, mr. speaker, the ipad comes with a screen reader, support for playback of the closed-captioned content
and other innovative universal access features. this was done right out of the box. apple did this voluntarily. these features make ipad easier to use for people who have vision impairments or deaf or hard of hearing or who have physical or learning disabilities. it includes a voiceover, a gesture-based screen reader for the blind. instead of memorizing keyboard commands or pressing tiny arrow keys, you can simply touch the screen to he a description of the item under your finger, then double tap, drag or flip to control the ipad. voiceover speaks 21 languages and works with all of the applications built into the ipad. let me repeat at.
the voiceover speaks 21 languages and works with all the applications built into the ipad, a if he number that. apple also -- a phenomenon. apple also created applications for the ipad that works with voiceover. furthermore, every ipad can display subtitles and closed captioning for the deaf and hard of hearing when playing movies and podcasts that support it. movies and podcasts with closed captioning are available on the itunes store and can be downloaded directly to ipad or synced to the ipad using itunes. it is important, my colleagues, to remember that a company like apple included these features without any government mandates. this suggests that the broader market could be providing better access to people with disabilities than they do today.
this bill will go a long ways towas doing that. the f.c.c. should remember when they come to asking for comments, when they have responses, and they have an advisory committee that's all involved with this, the key is to be flexible in their response so that industry like apple did with the ipad has the flexibility to develop the most sound and comprehensive ways to help our disabilities today. with that, mr. speaker, i reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman reserves the balance of his time. the gentleman from massachusetts. mr. markey: could you advise us as to how much time remains on either side? the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from msachusetts has 3 1/2 minutes. and the gentleman from florida has 8 1/2 minutes. mr. markey: to the gentleman from florida, i will be the concluding speaker forur
side. if the gentleman would like to recognize any other member. mr. stearns: i will conclude my commen and then yield back the balance of my time. i think it's been pointed out by mr. markey this is an historic day. 20 years ago the americans with disabilities act passed. i voted r it. i supported it. i think many people in my district and many of my friends have children who have disabilities. it is important that these individuals do not feel left out. i think the eloquent arguments we had 20 years ago are no less important today, particularly in lightf the veterans that are coming home fromraq and afghanistan, are coming home with the disabilities that will impair them. and they're in their 20's. these are young men and women that want to work, and for many of them they'd like to go back to their team but they can't. they must fi employment.
they must in many ways adjust and transition. how much better will it be if they can use the internet, if they can use the wireless devices that we have and not to mention the myriad of new devices that are coming out, how important is this for them? very important. so today i join with mr. markey and others to commend him for his hard work here and his effort and urge my colleagues to support this bill. and with that, mr. speaker, i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. the gentleman from massachusetts. mr. markey: i thank the gentleman very much, and i thank the -- i yield myself as much time as i may consume. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. markey: i thank the speaker very much, and i thank the gentleman from florida, again, for his work on this legislation and to mr. barton and to all of the members on the minority. we could not be here without
their cooperation today. this is a very complex piece of legislation. it's historic but it required a lot of bipartisan work to bring it to this point. i want to thank neil fried and mr. carton the minority staff for their work on this legislation. on the majority side, i want to thank roger shern, tim poderly, sarah fisher, for many years, clin crowe on this staff worked -- colin crowe on this staff worked on this legislation. i thank you, mark, for your incredible effort on this issue. we could not be here without the incredible work that was put in by all of these people. back 20 years ago we had a force of nature, tony quello,
the majority whip, who said -- tony coelho, the majority whip, who said it was time for all the people to have access. he had a handicap himself and. and tony coelho was on the floor with us and he was an inspiration to us. that inspiration was carried by steny hoyer to ensure that that legislation did pass here in 1990, was signed by president bush into law, and all of the advances that were made thus far that make it possible for the historic moment where we have a speaker who is sitting up there today, mr. langevin from rhode island, and all the people who are using today's devices who gain access to the modern internet technologies have benefited from the laws that have been put on the books today.
for the 21st century, this law may be the most important law. people now have wheelchair access, but access to the web, access to information is what this century this information century is going to be all about. the deaf and blind, because of this legislation, will be able to make their contributions to our country and the world and let's not kid ourselves. the technologies developed here in the writes are going to spread across the whole wor for every deaf and blind person. that's quite a gift the people here in congress can make. so i thank the comnity, i thank yoall. i know that so many of you are here and so many of you are watching and listening. i can only pledge to you that we will continue to ensure that access is something that we guarantee as a right to be an american in every year we serve here in congress.
mr. speaker, it's my honor to have been here on the floor work you psiding over this historic 21st century legislation. you are the right person to be here and to create a ramp for the internet for the 21st century for all americans. i urge an aye vote on this legislation and i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman's time has expired. the chair will are remind guests in the gallery they are not to approve or disapprove of the proceedings and the question is, will the house suspend the rules and pass h.r. 3101 as amended? those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair, 2/3 being in the affirmative, the rules are suspended and the bill is passed. without objection, the motion to reconsider is laid upon the table. >> mr. speaker.
the speaker pro tempore: for what purpose does the gentleman from massachusetts rise? mr. stearns: i would like to request the yeas and nays. -- mr. markey: i would like to request the yeas and nays. the speaker pro tempore: all those in favor of taking this vote by the yeas and nays will rise and remain standing. a sufficient number hang risen, the yeas and nays are ordered. according to the chair's prior announcement, further proceedings on this motion will be postponed. pursuant to clause2a of rule 1, the chair declares the house in recess for a period of not less than 15 minutes.
>> the house is in recess. we will have live coverage when they return here on c-span. until then, a look at the 20th anniversary of the americans with disabilities act on "washington journal." harkin, thank you so much for being with us this morning. guest: thank you for having me. est: what was the like -- host: what was that like to get the americans with disabilities act passed? guest: it was a tremendous day. the largest gathering ever on the white house lawn fothe signing of a bill. president bush said the memorable line that when he finished his remarks, let the shameful walls of discrimination come tumbling down against people with disabilities. a remarkable day with euphoria
and the sense that finally people with disabilities have their civil rights guaranteed. think about it this way. prior to july 26, 1990, if you were a person of color and you went down to get a job for which you were qualified and that prospective employer told judy out because i am not hiring black people or asians, you could file suit for discrimination. but if you were a person with a wheelchair and you were qualified for that job and that employer said get out, i do not hire cripples and he went down to the court house, you have absolutely no rights whatsoever on discrimination. we have had some rights before protecting against race, color, creed, national origin, sex, all kinds of things, but not this
ability. so many people have discriminated blatantly for their entire lifetimes. imagine what it felt like to my own brother, people like that, to finally say that i now have my civil rights? a momentous day. host: you were the chief sponsor of this legislation. you talk about your family's personal experience, were there other reasons that this resonated for you? had people approach you about this? guest:i started in the house 12 years before, focusing mostly on issues dealing with this ability. we started getting closed captioning and the national captioning institute, things like that. it was not until i came to the senate in 1985 that the national council on disability was working to get this legislation upper.
the first sponsor was from connecticut in 1988. i was a sponsor with him. but then the senator did not come back, he did not win reelection in 1988. in 1989 i introduced the bill into the senate and it was introduced in the house in the same day. may 9, 1989. >> 20 years later -- host: 20 years later, is it working? guest: you tell me. the streets, have you seen the curb cuts? not just for people with wheelchair's, women with baby strollers levitt as well. every bus in america is now accessible. you can get it if you have a wheelchair or a walker. fully accessible. sports aren, movie theaters. that is excess ability.
there are things like information going out in different formats for the hearing-impaired or the sight impaired. closed captioning being the most ubiquitous of those. stop signs or crosswalk signs that speak to you. books that talk. all kindsf things that make it possible foromeone with this ability to be fully integrated into -- disabilities to be fully integrated into all aspects of american life. what i was working on the bill back in 1989, 1990, there was a young woman who was 14 at the time,everely disabled. she lived in the morning. when i talk to her about this she was very strong for it and i s telling her the wonderful things it would do to protect your rights, get a job and all of these things.
in her 14-year-old way, she said that is all important, but i want to be able to purchase a pair of shoes just like anyone else. that is really what the act is about. so that people with disabilities can live in the real world. >> of a house has returned after a brief recess. occasion of its 10th anniversary. the speaker pro tempore: pursuant to the rule, the gentleman from colorado, mr. polis and the gentleman from wisconsin, mr. petri, each will control 20 minutes. the chair recognizes the gentleman from colorado. mr. polis: i request five legislative days for members to revise and extend and insert extraneous materls into the record. the speaker pro tempore: without objection. mr. polis: i yield myself such time as i may consume. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. polis: i rise in strong support of house resolutn 1058 which honors the 10th
anniversary of so journ to the past, an organization which helps educate about the civil rights musme. the civil rights movement transformed the united states of america, ensuring legal equality and civil rights to all people in our country regardless of race or ethnicity. jeff steinberg understood the importance of civil rit whence he led a field trip to several civil rights landmarks. that grew to a program that includes 100 high school students with three trips each year, and includes discussionings with prominent veteran civil rights leaders. the students visit five landmarks, including the edmund pettus bridge, the site of a massacre, and the civil rights museum in memphis, tennessee.
more than 10 years later, so journ to the past has its own rich history, inspiring students to become civic leaders for the 21st century with a base of awareness of the civil rights movement of the 20th century. newfound knowledge of the civil rights movement, these high school students reflect on how they can fight to end bigotry and inequality in their own schools and communities. today more than 5,000 high school juniors and seniors learned these lessons through participation in so journ to the past. these -- in sojourn to the past. they will take responsibility for ending discrimination and promoting equality for all americans proving forward. i'd like to thank a great civil rights leader who i am deeply honored to serve with in the house of representatives, representative john lewis, for introducing this important resolution and serving on the sojourn national advisory committee.
i would like to reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman reserves the bance of his time. mr. petri of wisconsin is recognized. mr. petri: i yield myself such time as i may consume. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. petri: i rise in support of house concurrent resolution 275, expressing support for designation of the week beginning on the second sunday of september at the arts and -- as arts and education week. i'm sorry. i beg your pardon. i rise in support of house resolution 1048, honoring and praising the so journ to the past organization on though case of its 10th anniversary. since 1999, sojourn to the past a nonprofit organization, has taken thousands of students out of the classroom and across the country far life-changing educational experience by a hands-on lessons on the civil
rights movement, through a sometimes emotional and eye-opening 10-day journey following segregation in the deep south they learn the civil rights movement of the united states. sojourn to the past is the longest-running civil rights education and outreach program in the united states. it's conducted 55 sojourns and introduced over 55,000 high school juniors and seniors to the history of the civil rights movement this organization teaches high school students how the lessons of the civil rights movement are still relevant today. we recognize sojourn to the past for teaching younger generations of people about the history of the civil rights movement and challenging them to make a difference in their cools and their communities. i support this resolution and reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman reserves the balance of his time. the gentleman from colorado is recognized. mr. polis: madam speaker, it's my honor to recognize the gentleman from georgia, mr. lewis, for as much time as he
may consume. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from georgia, mr. lewis, is recognized for as much time as he may consume. mr. lewis: madam speaker, i want to thank my friend and colleague from colorado, and my friend and colleague from wisconsin for bringing this resolution before us. want to thank the chairman and the ranking member of the ucation and labor committee for their support of this bill and the majority leader for his support and for bringing this resolution to the floor. madam speaker, this year marks the 10th annersary of an outstanding organization called sojourn to the past, the longest running civil rights education program in the united states. sojourn to the past was founded by jeff steinberg and five american history high school teachers from northern california. he started by taking his students on a 10-day field trip through the south to see where the most important moments of
the civil rights movement actually happened. he took them to places like atlanta, tuss keke, birmingham, and took them to jackson, little rock. while on these journey, young people met the leaders of the movement. they get out of the classroom and visit historic places that mark the time. through this program i believe young people grew more informed about the movement, they learn how it changed our country and our society. and they are changed. they become better human beings and better citins, not just for the citizens but of the world. since itegan, sojourn to the past has taken over 5,000 high school students on these journeys teaching them about the importance of social justice and the philosophy and the discipline of nonviolence.
and like the civil rights movement itself, it challenged young people to think about their own values, about what kind of country they want america to be. madam speaker, i invite all of my colleagues to join with all of us in honoring this important organization. thank you very much, and i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. mr. petri from wisconsin is recognized. mr. petri: madam speaker, i have no further qurs pour -- requests for time and i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro teore: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. the gentleman from colorado is recognized. mr. polis: madam speaker, i once again express my support for house resolution 1058, which honors the 10th anniversary of sojourn to the past to help young americans understand the importance and the history of their very recent civil rights movement in this country. urge my colleagues to join me in supporting this resolution, and i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time.
the estion is will the house suspend the rules and agree to house resolution 1058 as amend. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair, 2/3 having responded in the affirmative, the rules are suspended and the resolution is agreed to and without objection the motion to reconsider is laid on the table. for what purpose does the gentleman from colorado seek recognition? mr. polis: madam speaker, i move that the house suspend the rules and agree to house resolution 1543. the speaker pro tempore: the clerk will report the title of the resolution. the clerk: house resolution 1543, resolution honoring the educational significance of dr. jane goodall's work on this the 50th anniversary of the beginning ofer work in tanzania, africa. the speaker pro tempore: pursuant to the rule, the gentleman from colorado, mr. polis, and the gentleman from wisconsin, mr. petri, each will control 20 minutes.
the chair recognizes the gentleman from colorado. mr. polis: madam speaker, i request five legislative days during which members may revise and extend and insert extraneous material on house resolution 1543 into the record. the speaker pro tempore: without objection. mr. polis: madam speaker, i yield myself such time as i may consume. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from colorado is recognized. mr. polis: madam speak, i rise today in support of house resolution 1543 which honors my dear friend, dr. jane goodall, on the 50th anniversary of the beginning of her important and groundbreaking work in tanzan, africa. dr. goodalis an inns pittsburgh, world renowned primatologist and the -- is an inspirational, world renowned primatologist. she has continued scientific research and environmental research of chimpanzees and other primates as well as a role model for young men and
women. in keeping with her childhood fascination with chimpanzees, dr. goodall started researching in 1960. dr. goodall remained open to new ideas in the field and new approaches in prime tolling and research. her pioneering observations of primates behavior changed our views on primates, especially with those of social behaviors. she observed the chimpanzee and developed relationships with family members in a complex social structure, exhibit reason and thought in the concept of self and occasionally e foods outside of a vegetarian diet. a few years after her if you initl research, dr. goodall authored a collection of articles and books that today provides the foundational work
of chimpanzees. her like -- works like "30 years observing the chimpanzees" details the ranging behaviors of chimpanzee natural history and remain critical references for present-day students, researchers and scientists. her research and publications also help inform the jane goodall institute which empowers individuals to improve the habitats of all living things through research, training and increased awareness of animals, communities and their enronments. her efforts in education, including the roots and chutes programs, which is available through primary and secondary levels, helps instill environmental learning and a whole new generation of future civic, scientific and business leaders. she is an inspiration to my own
sister, jordana, which acted as jane goodall in her fifth grade biology fair, and was inspired her by the example of dr. jane goodall. and her high-profile role at a time when there were very few women in the research sciences. madam speaker, i'd like to express my strong support house resolution 1543, which honors the 50th anniversary of dr. jane goodall's researcon chimpanzee behavior and celebrates her incredibly important work in the field. i ask my colleagues to support me in supporting this bill. i reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman reserves the balance of his time. the gentleman from wisconsin, mr. petri, is recognized. mr. petri: madam speaker, i yield myself such time as i may consume. the speaker pro tempore:
without objection. i rise in support of house resolution 1543, honoring the educational significance of dr. jane goodall's work on this the 50th anniversary of the beginning of her work in tanzania, africa. dr. goodall is one of the foremost authorities on chimpanzees having closely observed their behavior in the jungles the gandhi reserve in africa, living in the chimps' environment and gaining their confidence. her observations and discoveries are internationally heralded. her research and writings have made revolutionary inroads into scientific thinking. she received her ph.d. from cambridge university in 1965. she's been the science director of the gandhi stream research center since 1967. 1984, dr. goodall received the j.p. wall getty wildlife conservation prize for helping millions of people understand
the importance of wildlife conservation for life on this planet. her other awards and international recognitions filled pages. her scientific articles have appeared in many issues of "national geograph" magazine. she's written scores of magazines of known scientists. dr. goodall has writtenwo books "wild chimpanzees" and "in the shadow of man." dr. goodall has expanded her global outreach with the founding of the drjane goodall institute in connecticut. e now teaches and encourages young people to appreciate the conversation of chimpanzees and of all creatures, great and small. she lectures, writes, teaches and continues her mission in many inventiveays including the chimpanzee guardian projects. today, we honor dr. jane
goodall for the significant role that her resear has played in recognizing the behavioral differences in humans and other animal species. i support this resolution and ask my colleagues to do the same. madam speaker, i have no further requests for time and yield back the balance of time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. the gentleman from colorado is recognized. mr. polis: madam speaker, i once again would like to express my support for house resolution 1543, which honors the 50th anniversary of dr. goodall's research on chimpanzee behavior and celebrates hermmense educational and scientific contributions to the field as well as her life dedicated to a sustainable future, not only for humans but four all of the residents of our wonderful and fair planet. i urge my colleagues to join me in supporting this resolution, and i yield back thbalance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. the question is will the house suspend the rules and agree to house resolution 1543. those in favor say aye.
those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair, 2/3 having responded in the affirmative, the rules are -- mr. polis: madam speaker. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from colorado is recognized. mr. polis: madam speaker, on that i request the yeas and nays. the speaker pro tempore: the yeas and nays are reested. all those in favor of taking this vote by the yeas and nays will rise and remain standing until counted. a sufficient number having arisen, the yeas and nays are ordered. pursuant to clause 8 of rule 20 and the chair's prior announcement, further proceedings on this motion will be postponed. for what purpose does the gentleman om colorado seek recognition? mr. polis: madam speaker, i move that the house suspend the rules and agree to house resolution 1456. the speaker pro tempore: the clerk will report the title of the resolution. the clerk: house resolution 1456, resolution congratulating the university of dayton men's basketball team for winning the 2010 national invitation tournament basketball championship. the speaker pro tempore:
pursuant to the rule, the gentleman from colorado, mr. polis, and the gentleman from wisconsin, mr. petri, each will control 20 minutes. the chair recognizes the gentleman from colorado. mr. polis: madam speaker, i request five legislative days during which members may revise and extend and insert extraneous material on house resolution 1456 into the record. the speaker pro tempore: without objection. mr. polis: i yield myself such time as i may consume. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. polis: madam speaker, i rise today in support of house resolution 1456, which congratulates the university of deyton's men's basketball team for winning the 2010 national invitation tournament basketball championship. the n.i.t. is the oldest tournament in college basketball, it started in 1938. it was the first national postseason collegiate basketball tournament to be played in the country. one year before the ncaa. the deyton flyers claimed victory er last year's champs, the tar heels, with a 79-68 win, that thursday night at madison square garden in new york city.
it was the flyers' first n.i.t. title in 40 years and their third in university of deyton's history. additionally, this was the 22nd appearance in the n.i.t., cond only to st. john's 22nd. this season mked the head coach's seventh season with the flyers. deyton players showed excellence offense against the tar heels. paul williams scored 16 points for deyton while chris wlithe and chris johnson both had 14 points. with a strong lineup, they beat 14 teams in route to the championship. i also want to congratulate the flyers for their excellence off the court. the deyton team had a 100% grad ration rate since 2010 since brian gregory was named head coach in 2003. i join the students, alumni, faculty and staff in celebrating these impressive student athletes. madam speaker, i once again congratulate theeyton flyers
on win the 2010 invitational tournament. i ask my colleagues to support it. i reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman reserves the balance of his time. the gentleman from wisconsin is recognized. mr. petri: madam speaker, i yield myself such time as i may consume. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. petri: i rise today in support of house resolution 1456, congratulating the university of deyton's men's basketball team for win the 2010 national invitation tournament basketball championship. the university of dayton flyers defeated the university of north carolina tar heels 79-68 inhe finals of the national invitational basketball tournament. the flyers men's basketball team holds 40 all-time victories in the national invitation tournament, or n.i.t., the second most victories in tournament history. flyers' coach, brian gregory, led the team to victory in his
second season as dayton's head coach, every season of which has been a winning season. head coach brian gregory has also led the team to two ncaa tournaments and two national invitational tournaments. flyers plar chris johnson earned the 2010 n.i.t. most outstanding play and mark johnson was selected to the n.i.t. all-tournament team. the dayton flyers ended the 2009-2010 season with 25 wins and 14 losses, ending with their third n.i.t. title. though we're celebrating their athletic excellence, let's take a moment to recognize the quality of their academic programs as well. the university of dayton is a top tyre national doctoral university and one of the 10 best catholic universities in the nation. according to "u.s. news & world
report." founded in 1850, the university of dayton's offerings include 70 undergraduate programs in four divisions and graduate programs at the masters and doctoral level as well as a law degree. the largest private university in ohio, university of dayton is a leader in higher education. i extend my congratulations to dayton university's president, head coach brian gregory and his staff, the hardworking players and of course the fan. -- the fans. i wish theall continued success and ask my colleagues to support this resolution. i reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from colorado is recognized. mr. polis: i'd like to inquire if the gentleman has any additional speakers? mr. petri: i do. mr. polis: i reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from wisconsin is recognized.
mr. petri: i recognize the author of the resolution, mike turner. the speaker pro tempore: for hutctime is the gentleman recognized? mr. petri: for as much time as he may consume. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. turner: i rise in strong support of house resolution 1456, congratulating the -- congratulating the university of dayton's men's basketball team for winning the basketball men's chamonship. the basketball team won its third i.t. championship in school history. they won on april 1, defeating the ncaa tournament national championship north carolina tar heels 79-56. they are second in all-time wins at the n.i.t. with 40. in addition to their success off the court, as has been stated, the university of dayton, academically, is very successful with its athletes. the program has graduated every senior student athte since brian gregory was named head
coach in 2003, including seven play thers season. in addition, u.d. graduated 96% of all its student athletes in 2008, the most of any athletic conference -- atlantic conference school and tied for 10th overall. the survey of community revitalization ranked university of dayton number one among catholic universities and number three overall in helping save america's cities from blight. they're being very active in the community in revitalization. the university of dayton is also a center of research excellence, with u.d.r.i. being a major contributor to research that affects national security. not only does the men's basketball program serve as a significant aspect of campus life, it plays a major role in bringing people from the surrounding area into the city. the flyer men's basketball team has within -- has been one of the biggest attractions there in years.
since it opened, it's been in the top 35 in home attendance this year they led the atlantic 10 conference for the 13th straight season in attendance. the university of dayton is one of the 10 largest catholic schools in the united states. the faculty, alumni and fans of the university should be recognized. i would like to thank my highway colleagues. as a proud alumnus of the university of dayton m.b.a. program i urge my colleagues to support this resolution congratulating the university of dayton's men's basketball team on their championship. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back. the jell from colorado is recognized. mr. polis: does the gentleman have any additional speakers?
mr. tri: i have no further requests for time and i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from colorado is recognized. mr. polis: i congratulate the dayton flyers for winning the 2010 tournament, i thank congressman turner for bringing this resolution forward and i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back. the question is will the house suspend the rules and pass house resolution 1456. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair, 2/3 being in the affirmative, the rules are suspended and the resolution is passed. without objection, the motion to reconsider is laid on the table. for what purpose does the gentleman from colorado seek recognition? mr. polis: i move that the house suspend the rules an agree to house concurrent resolution 275 as amended. the speaker pro tempore: the clerk will report the title of the concurrent resolution. the clerk: house concurrent resolution 275, concurrent
resolution expressing support of designating the week beginning on the second sunday of september as arts in education week. the speaker pro tempore: pursuant to the rule, the gentleman from colorado, mr. polis, and the gentleman from wisconsin, mr. petri, each will troll 20 minutes. the chair recognizes the gentleman from colorado. mr. polis: i request five legislative days in which members may revise and extend and insert extraneous material on houseres. louis 275 into the record. the speaker pro tempore: without objection. mr. polis: i yield myself such time as i may consume. the speaker pro tempore: the chair rebling nices the gentleman from colorado. mr. polis: i rise in support of house concurrent resolution 275 which expresses support for designating the week beginning the second sunday of september as arts in education week. e arts serve a critical role in the advancement of students' creativity and intellectual development. a well-rounded session extremely important in our schools and communities helping students think creatively and
critically. when students leave the classroom they use their understanding of dance, music, theater, literature, design, visual arts to communicate in new way, build intellectual capital to express themselves within and across cultures and medium thesms arts also add a new dimension thinking of social and hard sciences. in keeping with albert eitein's assertion that, quote, the greatest scientists are artists as well, end quote. art has a positive effect on students' academic career. many studies show that those participating in visual and performing arts have bter grades and are less likely to drop out. they are at least three times more likely to be elected to class office, or win an award for scho attendance or writing a poem or essay. they are also more likely to go
on to college. however, a poll found that only 58% of eighth graders attended schools where music instruction was offered three times a week and only 53% attended schools where visualrts were offered thretimes or more a week this highlights the importance of giving our students expanded opportunities to participate in the visual and performing arts in school. i took advantage of those opportunities growing up myself, participating in several school plays throughout lower school and elementary school in a music program and i know that i take many of those lessons today that have help make me a wetter rounded perso and more effecve representative in congress for the people of colorado. i strongly encourage my colleagues to join representative speier, the sponsor of this bill, in supporting arts and education
week and i reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman reserves the balance of his time. the gentleman from wisconsin, mr. petri, is recognized. mr. petri: i yield myself such time as i may consume. the speaker pro tempore: the chair recognizes the gentleman from wisconsin. mr. petri: i rise in support of house concurrent resolutn 275, expressing support for the dez igs nation of the week beginning the second sunday in september as arts in education ek this highlights the benefits of exposing students to the benefits of the arts and recognizes that arts can play a role in educating youth. many localities have a rich art community, exposg youth to museums, artists and works of art within these communities can help to provide cultural experiences, foster creativity and support classroom learning about the arts. many states and communities are taking efforts to ensure udents are exposed to the arts. most states specifically -- most states, scifically, 43
states, require schools to provide art instruction and many schools have integrated art education into other areas of study. many instructors take advantage of local artistry by introducing students to the various points of access to arts in the community. parents play a vital role in exposing youth to the arts as well. weekend trips to the art museum or a night out to see a local play are two examples of ways to educate children about and ensure their children's participation in the arts. i urge my colleagues to support this resolution, i have no requests forime and i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. the chair recognizes the gentleman from colorado. mr. polis: it's my honor to recognize the gentleman from new jersey, mr. pascrell, for as much time as he may consume. the speaker pro tempore: the chair recognizes the gentleman from new jersey for as much time as he may consume.
mr. pascrell: thank you, madam speaker, thank you madam chair. the gentlelady from california is not here yet. the primary sponsor of the legislation. but i rise in support of resolution 275 and i want to commend both mr. polis and mr. petri for their very succinct words. i know firsthand the benefits that our children receive from a robust arts education program whether it's music, theater, visual arts, photography, poetry, dance. this is not simply an outlet. this is part and parcel of the essential features of what a good education is all about. unfortunately, the current state of the economy has now
put these classes and further enrichment of oustudents at risk and i would ask us to address this issue. what's the first to be cut, right across the nation? arts. libraries. and sports. the things our kids love best. these are not just times that they seek to get away from things, but these are part of their lives. it enriches them. it contributes to the total being. you have appreciation of arts, i taught an arts course, history through the arts. mostly students who could care less about american history. so i had to find a way to get to them. and i taught the course through
going through all of those fine arts i just talked about. i asked them to learn about our nation, through different periods of time, the artwork, the poetry, the music of that particular time. not unlike we would do in the renaissance. this is particularly evident in new jersey, city of my district , west orange, has announced its intentions to cut its music and arts dartments. in addition to laying off almost 90 staff members in order to reduce its budget. it'sorced to do that. yet we take no action. last year in the stimulus package, we saved a lot of jobs, necessary jobs, this year, we are reluctant to do that. we are frightened. the word deficit is all in capital letters, yet for eight years we saw this accumulate
and accumulate and said nothing. in my town of paterson, where i grew up and still live, 50 music teachers, 38 art teachers got their pink slips. john f. kennedy high schl performed just its second spring musical in 30 years. talk about austerity, in april. due to the cuts, it could be another 30 years. i'm not exaggerating. these are the numbers. you can't make this stuff up. before this crisis, a 2007 study found that more than 75,000 students in new jersey attend school every day with no arts education. if we want to encourage arts in education then we can't fork out the both sides of our mouth. so it's nice to recognize them a week, a month or year as
arts year. that's fine, that's great. if we fire all the arts teachers what would that be like? it seems that the senate has decided to strip the $10 billion that the house voted for to keep our teachers in their classroom. i don't know what's happening at the other end of the building. by failing to provide our children with opportunities to supplement their classes, we are rubbing them, robbing them of a complete education. we must consider the arts which enrich our lives, the lives of our youth, spark a life-long love andassion for crtivity, not as a secondary priority in our educational system. but as an essential pillar of its foundation. so i urge the support of 275, which expresses the supporfor designation of this we
beginning on the second sunday of september, and i urge the senate to keep up with the house on some issues, at least. i yield back. thank you very much, madam speaker. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from new jersey yields back the balance of his time. the gentleman from wisconsin is recognized. mr. petri: i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from wisconsin yields back the balance of his time. the chair recognizes the gentleman from coloro. mr. polis: madam speaker, i once again want to thank representative speier for introducing this concurrent resolution and once again express my support for the week beginning in the second sunday in september as arts in education week. i urge my colleagues to join me in supporting this resolution of arts in education, and i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. the question is will the house suspend the rules and agree to house resolution concurrent resolution 275, as amended. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair,
the speaker pro tempore: for what purpose does the gentlewoman from the district of columbia seekecognition? ms. norton: madam speaker, i move that the house suspend the rules and agree to the bill, h.con.res 226. the speaker pro tempore: the clerk will report the title of the concurrent resolution. the clerk: house concurrent resolution 226, concurrent resolution supporting the observance of spirit of 1945 day. the speaker pro tempore: pursuant to the rule, the gentlewoman from the district of columbia, ms. norton, and the gentleman from alabama, mr. bonner, each will control 20 minutes. the chair recognizes the gentlewoman from the district of columbia. ms. norton: madam speaker, i ask unanimous consent that all members may haveive legislative days to revise and extend their remarks. the speaker pro tempore: without objection. ms. norton: madam speaker, i yield myself such time as i may consume. the speaker pro tempore: the chair recognizes the gentlewoman from the district of columbia. ms. norton: madam speaker, on behalf of the committee of oversight and government reform, i present house
concurrent resolution 226 for consideration, supporting the observance of spirit of 1945 day to commemorate the anniversary of the end of world war ii on august 14, 1945. h.con.res 226 was introduced by our colleague, representative filner of california, in january, 2010. it was referred to the committee on oversight and government reform which ordered it reported favorably by unanimous consent in july. h.con.res 226 enjoys strong bipartisan support of over 70 co-sponsors. madam speaker, communities across the country will commemorate the 65th anniversary of the end of world war ii on august 14 by establishing an annual day of remembrance in honor of the legacy of the men and women of america's so-called greatest generation. august 14, 1945, is a day that changed history. it marked the end of world war ii and ushered in a new era of
peace, prosperity and unity made possible by the heroic efforts of men and women who risked their freedom to give us ours. the goal of this resolution is so inspire a new sense of community and national unity in our country by establishing a day when america will stop to reflect on the achievements of the men and women who endured the great depression, preserved freedom and democracy in the most devastating war in history and then went on to rebuild their shattered world. their example of courage, self-sacrifice and commitment can inspire a renewed sense of national unity when our country must again come together to meet common challenges. spirit of 1945 day will engage young and old and a share intergenerational project that will preserve forever an important part of our nation's history and heritage while reinvig rating --
reinvirating our community, creating a sense of unity at a time when our nation is facing major challenges once again. madam speaker, this year marks the 65th anniversary of t end of world war ii and it makes me one of the last time -- the times americans can y thank you to our greatest generation to their legacy of service. let us now honor them and encourage others to follow their example through the passage of h.con.res 226. thank you, madam speaker, and i reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlelady reserves the balance of her time. the gentleman from alabama, mr. bonner, is recognized. mr. bonner: thank you, madam speaker. i yield myself such time as i may consume. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman is recognized. mr. bonner: i rise today in support of house concurrent resolution 226, supporting the observance of spirit of 1945 day.
madam speaker, august 14, 2010, marks the 65th anniversary of the end of world war ii. it was on this day in 1945 that the japanese informed the united states that they had agreed to the terms of the surrender agreement, and after some six horrific years, the second world war was over. the alied victory mark, the -- the allied victory tt defeated the axis powers, liberated oppressed nations and ended the horrors of the holocaust. the victory was achieved by the collective service and individual sacrifice of the people of the united states, both those who served on the front lines, overseas, as well as those who supported them here at home. japan's surrender came some three years and eight months after the bombings at pearl harbor and marked the beginning of an unprecedented era of
global rebuilding. the united states was the leader in this effort to not only to rebuild the war-ravaged nations of our allies but of ours as well. during world war ii, more an 400,000 americans lost their lives in the ultimate act of sacrifice to our great nation. the men and women who were fortunate enough to survive and serve so bravely both on the home front and overseas make up a generation that many americans consider the greatest generation. a generation that has and continues to dedicate themselves to service and sacrifice to their community and to our great country. this generation has promoted civic engagement and created numerous organizations and institutions in the postwar years that have truly made america and the world a better place.
today, the sacrifice, courage and dedicationf those who served during world war ii still inspires those who wear the uniform and defend our nation each and every day. the men and women in our armed forces who fight for freedom effort day in iraq, afghanistan and all over the world are the children and grandchildren of those who gave so much in world war ii. undoubtedly, today's soldiers have been influenced and motivated by those who served during the great world war. madam speaker, as we move further away from ts historic anniversary and with many of this generation passing away on a daily basis, it is so easy to forget both the sacrifices that this generation ma during the war and what they did after the war. america's victory catapulted our nation to become the
predominant world superpower and allowed the children, grandchildren and great grandchildren of this generation to grow up in a more prosperous and safe country. like my colleagues and all americans, i am truly thankful for the sacrifices endured by so many during the war and afterwards and after august 14, 1945. and on the second sunday in august, the proposed spirit of 1945 day, i urge each and every american to reflect on the importance of this day and what it means to ou country. madam speaker, i strongly support this resolution and urge all members to join me in supporting h.con.res 226, and i rve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentman reserves the balance of his time. the chair recognizes the gentlelady from the district of columbia. ms. norton: madam speaker, i'm pleased to yield to the gentleman from california, mr. filner, the author of e resolution, for such time as he
may consume. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from california, mr. filner, is recognized for as much time as he may consume. mr. filner: i thank e gentlelady. as the chair of the house veterans committee' committee, i ask my colleagues to support -- veterans' committee, i ask colleagues to support 226, to honor the soldiers of the second world war. i ask that my remarks be inserted in the record. and we all know that this was the war that was carried out by the greatest generation and the spirit of 1945 memorial day is to set aside for us and our children and our grandchildren and their children to think about the courage and the heroism and, of course, the victory of the troops fought on the allied side in the second world war. the -- this year of remembrance or this day of remembrance was
celebrated several months ago in san diego on the aircraft carrier midway which is stationed as a both a learning environment, as a tourist attraction in the san diego harbor. one of the great spirits of that day was the nurse, edith shane, who was the one who was pictured in the iconic "life" magazine cover of the marine -- of the soldier coming home and kissing the nurse that we all remember as sort of emblem attic of the spirit of the -- emblematic of the spirit of the end of the war. edith went around the country talking about our great heroes. she passed away at the age of 93 a few weeks ago. so in her spirit but in the spirit of all those, all those incredible people of the greatest jen reags, we offer this resolution -- generation,
we offer this resolution so our country can always remember their bravery and courage. i would yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. the gentleman from alabama is recognized. mr. bonner: madam speaker, i reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman reserves the balance of his time. the gentlelady from the district of columbia is recognized. ms. norton: madam speaker, i have no further speakers. if the gentleman is ready to yield back, i would like to reserve at this time. mr. bonner: madam speaker, i have no further speakers as well. i urge support and yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from alabama, mr. bonner, yields back the balance of his time. the gentlelady from the district of columbia is recognized. ms. norton: madam speaker, i strongly urge my colleagues to join me in supporting the observance of spirit of 1945 day, and i thank you and yield back the balance my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlelady yields back the balance of her time. the question is will the house
suspend the rules and agree to house concurrent resolution 226. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair, 2/3 having responded in the affirmative, the rules are suspended, the concurrent resolution is agreed to and without objection, the motion to reconsider is laid on the table. for what purpose does the gentlewoman from the district of columbia seek recognition? ms. norton: madam speaker, i move that the house suspend the rules and agree to the bill h.res. 1525. the speaker pro tempore: the clerk will report the title of the resolution. the clerk: house resolution 1525, resolution honoring the 50th anniversary of the publication of "to kill a mockingbird," a classic american novel authored by nelle harper lee of monroeville, alabama. the speaker pro tempore: pursuant to the rule, the gentlewoman from the district of columbia, ms. norton, and the gentleman from alabama, mr.
bonner, each will control 20 minutes. the chair recognizes the gentlewoman from the district of columbia. ms. norton: i'm pleased to present house resolution 1525 for consideration. h.res. 1525 was introduced by our colleague, representative jo bonner, of alabama, it was presented to the committee of oversight and government reform. it enjoys the bipartisan support of over 80 co-sponsors. madam speaker, "to kill a mocking bird" is one of the greatest works of 20th century american literature. the novel has sold over 30 million copies in its 50-year history and remains a staple in classrooms all over the
country. for years, students have studies this -- studied this coming of age tale, giving teach the opportunity to facilitate frank discussions of its tark and challenging scenes. the story deals with difficult issues of injustice and racial prejudice but also provides an uplifting portrayal of courage, morality, and human decency. in particular, atticus finch continues to serve as a moral hero for many readers, as well as a model of integrity for the legal profession. notably in 1997, the alabama state board erected a monument to the character in harper lee's hometown of monroeville, outside their historic old courthouse. the novel is set in the 1930's but is closely associated with the civil rights movement and some scholars believe some of the events and characters of
the novel are based on events and figures of that movement. the novel is part of that period in our nation's history in which we began to address inequality and injustice. the morality the novel inspired helped leaders to support it, bringing knowledge through the dwhrifes narrator, a young child. harper lee has won many awards for "to kill a mockingbird," including the pulitzer prize after 41 weeks on the bestseller list. lee was named to the national council of the art in 1966, inducted into the alabama academy of honor in 2001 rerks seved an honorary doctorate if the university of notre dame in 2006 and was awarded a presidential medal of freedom by president bush in 2007.
her novel's impact on the world will be felt for generations to come as people around the country and around the world continue to read, study, and learn from the work. madam speaker, let us now take the time to honor harper lee and her classic american novel through the passage of h.res. 1525. i urge my colleagues to join me in supporting h.res. 1525 and i reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlelady reserves the balance of her time. the gentleman from alabama, mr. bonner, is recognized. mr. bonner: thank you, madam speaker. i thank my colleague if the district of columbia for her assistance today as well as we bring this american classic to the floor of the house of representatives. on behalf of my colleagues in the alabama delegation, mr. aderholt, mr. bachus, mr.
bright, mr. davis, dr. griffith, and mr. rogers, as well as our two united states senators from alabama, senator shelby and senator sessions, i'm extremely proud to rise today in support of house resolution 1525, honoring the 50th anniversary of the publication of the a truly great american novel, "to kill a mockingbird," and madam speaker, i yield myself such time as i may consume. the speaker pro tempore: the chair recognizes the gentleman. mr. bonner: it was 50 years ago this month when nell harper lee of monroeville penned what is today considered one of the most beloved american stories of all time. before i speak further about ms. lee and her masterpiece, however, i'd like to take a minute to thank chairman towns and ranking member issa of the oversight and government reform committee and their staffs for working with my staff and me to get this resolution brought to the house floor before congress breakers in august district
work period. if approved, i hope to present a copy of this resolution to the people of monroe county when i return home later this week. i would also like to thank the speaker of the house, the majority leader, and the minority -- and the majority whip, mr. hoyer, mr. clyburn, as well as the minority leader, mr. boehner and minority whip, mr. cantor, not to mention all the other members of congress who have co-sponsored this resolution for their encouragement and support in finding an appropriate way to honor ms. lee. her family, as well as the wonderful people of monroeville, alabama, a town of approximately 7,000 people, which i am proud to say i represent in alabama's first congressional district. without a doubt, the people of monroeville and monroe county all join with me and this body as we celebrate this proud moment, for as people all
across america know, monroeville provided the real-life setting for the fictional town of makom where the fictional tale comes to life. i am pleased to offer this resolution which offers the remarkable achievements of a pulitzer-prize-winning south alabama author whose words have not only inspired generation bus have helped change our nation and the world for the better. born on april 28, 1926, to a.c. and francis finch lee, nell harper completed her first and only novel in 1960. in fact, it appeared for the very first time on july 11 of that year. upon its publication, nell, as she is affectionately known to her family and close friends, reportedly remarked her book would win some encouragement for what was a budding writing
career. 50 years later, it is safe to say her hopes have been more than realized. in many ways, harper lee could not have foreseen her brilliantly worded prose would one day become a literary bee cohn for equality and justice, not to mention an inspiration for the advancement of civil rights all across our land. not only would "to kill a mockingbird" become one of the great books of the 20th century but the 1962 movie version, starring grig peck, has been immortalized in celluloid. the courtroom intine -- interior shown in the movie is the exact replica of the sold county -- old county courthouse in monroeville which you can visit today. for her effort the book won the pulitzer prize for fiction in 1961. today, as the gentlelady from the district of columbia pointed out, "mockingbird" has
sold more than 30 million copies and has been published in more than 40 different languages. in survey after survey asking which one book civilized people should read, "to kill a mockingbird" routinely finishes second only to the holy bible and the movie which premiered in 1962, won three oscars, including best actor for mr. peck who brought the character of at cus finch to wlisme know the characters as though they live down the street from us. there's scout, the 6-year-old narrator, as well as her father, atticus, who held every one of us with each word as he paced the courtroom floor while delivering his impassioned argument in defense of tom robins. how many young lawyers today credit atticus finch with inspiring them to go into law? there's scout's older brother jim they housekeeper calpurnia,
their neighbor, dill, and of course tom robinson, the black man wrongly accused of rape. madam speaker, this month, as we celebrate the 50th anniversary of "to kill a mockingbird," we also use this as a fitting occasion to honor the life of its author, harper lee. the people of monroeville honored her legacy by staging annual performances of they are book to the delight of those throughout the south, not to mention in the kennedy cent for the d.c. and standing room only crowds in england and israel. just a few weeks ago, monroeville hosted a special 50th anniversary tribute to harper lee and her famous novel, attracting admiring fans from all across the country. a half century after the ink has dried on this first edition of "to kill a mocking bird,"
its pages still call our better instincts of decency and fairness to our fellow man while reminding us that prejudice, though too common, must continue to be confronted. on a personal note, i was honored to attend the 2007 white house ceremony during which nell harper lee was presented the presidential medal of freedom, america's highest civilian award, by president george w. bush. presenting -- in presenting this award to ms. lee, the president noted, "to kill a mockingbird" has influenced the character of our country for the better. it's been a gift to the entire world, as a model of good writing and humane sensibility this book will be read and studied forever. after the medal ceremony in the east room, and after a brief reception in the state dining room, i was truly touched as people stood literally the length of the white house, including some of the other
recipients of the award ceremony that day just for the opportunity to thank ms. lee for her gift to mankind. in a moment i will truly never forget, i remember the ceremony was winding down, standing next to ms. lee in the foyer of the white house, while the conductor of the president's own, the united states band, led the orchestra in the musical score from the opening credits of the movie. there were few dry eyes in the white house that afternoon and it was a fitting close to a spectacular day. madam speaker, here on the 50th anniversary of "to kill a mockingbird," the people of monroeville, monroe county, and all across alabama could not be more proud of our favorite daughter and her lasting legacy. to ms. nell, her sister, ms. alice, and the many others who
inspired this story, our country offers the warmest congratulations and love on this occasion. no doubt for generations to come, there will also be touched and inspired by this timeless story. mavepls, i urge all the members to support h.res. 1525, and i reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman reserves the balance of his time. the gentlelady from the district of columbia is recognized. ms. holmes: one further word on this resolution. i commend the gentleman from alabama for coming forward with this resolution a honoring one who is perhaps the most esteemed constituent he or any before him have had in his home state, harper lee's novel teaches us something about the american novel and indeed about
fiction throughout humankind. that fiction often tells us what history books cannot convey. this is what harper lee managed to do at a time when writing about her subject was anything but popular. until she had put it on paper. in which case it rose out of her skill to be embraced by the american people and many across the world this book is very interesting because it is a product of a very distinct era in american history and life. and yet the novel continues to reverberate and inspire our very different era, an era
revising itself from that era, unadulterated racial prejudice of the kind described in this novel has a -- has abated and certainly is no longer openly celebrated as it once was. yet, what harper lee writes about has left a mark so deep in american history that it will never be entirely erased. that's why the novel continues to speak to us. it's not like what we find in american courtrooms. even in the old south today. it is that it reminds us the
distance we have come and for many of the distance we have to go. harper lee, it is said over and over again, wrote this one great novel. my response is if you write this novel you never need to write another single novel. you have said it perhaps all for yourself and in many ways she said it all for that era in our country. i ask the gentleman if he has any other speakers. mr. bonner: madam speaker, i do not have any other speakers, and i'm pleased to yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from alabama yields back the balance of his time. the gentlelady from the district of columbia is recognized. ms. norton: madam speaker, i have no further speakers, so i would again like to urge my colleagues to join me in honoring harper lee and her
renowned novel through the passage of h.res. 1525, and i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlelady yields back the balance of her time. the question is will the house suspend the rules and agree to house resolution 1525. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair, 2/3 having responded in the affirmative, the rules are suspended and the resolution is agreed to and without objection, the motion to reconsider is laid on the table. for what purpose does the gentlewoman from the district of columbia seek recognition? ms. norton: madam speaker, i move that the house suspend the rules and pass the bill h.r. 1320, the federal advisory committee act amendments as amended. the speaker pro tempore: the clerk will report the title of the bill. the clerk: h.r. 1320, a bill to amend the federal advisory committee act to increase the transparency and accountability of federal advisory committees, and for other purposes.
the speaker pro tempore: pursuant to the rule, the gentlewoman from the district of columbia, ms. norton, and the gentleman from alabama, mr. bonner, each will control 20 minutes. the chair recognizes the gentlewoman from the district of columbia. ms. norton: madam speaker, i yield myself such time as i may consume. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlelady is recognized. ms. norton: h.r. 1320 was introduced by representative clay, chairman of the oversight committee's information policy committee on march 5, 2009. representative clay introduced a similar bill as congress had passed the house by voice vote. this amends the federal advisory committee act, which is a cornerstone of open government, was enacted in 1972 in response to concerns that the federal advisory committee was not objective and had little oversight or accountability. faca requires that committees be balanced, transparent and independent from the influence
of special interests. agencies are not consistently complement -- have not implemented fmbing aca and undermines the purpose of the act. h.r. 1320 closes those loopholes and strengthens faca. it promotes the independent advisory committees. it will provide the committee members who are appointed as experts must comply with conflicts of interests and other ethics requirements it improves the transparency of the advisory committees by disclosing more information about committees. for example, agencies that require to provide information about the process used to identify and appoint committee members, the process of selecting members and a justification of need for any member that represents stakeholder interest. agencies must disclose when a committee member is issued a conflict of interest waiver and provide a copy of the waiver, a
summary of the need for the waiver and the reason for granting it. agencies must disclose when meetings are taking place and following a committee meeting the agency must provide a transcript or recording of the meeting. currently, advisory committee can avoid having public meetings and other requirements of faca by conducting business through subcommittees. the bill closes that loophole and makes it clear that faca applies to subcommittees. it provides that committees set up by contractors are subject to faca. this bill is the epitomy of government. i urge my colleagues to support it and i reserve the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentlelady reserves the balance of her time. the gentleman from alabama, mr. bonner, is recognized. mr. bonner: thank you, madam speaker. i yield myself such time as i may consume. the speaker pro tempore: the chair recognizes the gentleman. mr. bonner: i rise in support of h.r. 1320, the federal advisory committee act amendments of 2010.
federal advisory committee act, first signed into law in 1972, is an important safeguard of the publics right to know. congress originally passed faca to formally establish federal advisory committees and set guidelines for their creation in management in response to be believed by citizens and members of congress that many committees were duplicative, lacked adequate control or oversight. faca required formal reporting and oversight procedures. balanced membership, open meetings and ensured the advice provided by committees be objective and accessible to the public. federal advisory committees bring together private and governmental experts to examine issues and recommends statutory, regulatory and other actions. there are over 900 active
committees with nearly 64,000 total members that provide advice and recommendations to 50 federal agencies. these committees make key decisions affecting every american on vital issues such as health care, civil rights and national security. congress intended faca to shed some light into how agencies make decisions based upon advice and recommendations from individuals outside of government. it also ensures that the benefits received from such committees are justified to taxpayers. as originally introduced and reported, h.r. 1320 enhanced the advisory committee selection process and expanded the disclosure of conflicts of interest of committee members. the introduced and reported version of h.r. 1320 was essentially the same bill that many of my colleagues supported
last congress when it passed by a voice vote. however, madam speaker, over the past year the bill that many of our colleagues supported in the last congress was watered down by the majority and until recent changes, madam speaker, we would have been asked to support a bill that was promoting less transparency. however, following talks with the administration, the majority proposed a revised version of h.r. 1320 this spring that reduced transparency, limited disclosure and weakened the prohibition on conflicts of interest. this came as a shock to many of my republican colleagues on the committee on oversight and government reform. as a 2004 g.a.o. investigation found that agencies were using advisory committees to avoid disclosing conflicts of interest. thankfully, at the urging of
republican members on the committee of oversight and government reform, democratic and republican members were able to work together and gave this body a bill that increases transparency and accountability of both the committees and the agencies that they advise. h.r. 1320 provides strong protection against conflicts of interest and robust transparency into the workings of these committees. the bill also closes loopholes that many agencies were using to get around financial disclosure requirements andth ricks requirements for members -- and ethics requirements for members of those committees. i thank chairman clay, and other distinguished members of the committee for making the federal government more transparent and open and accountable to the american people. and i urge all members to support h.r. 1320 and reserve
the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from alabama reserves the balance of his time. the gentlelady from the district of columbia is recognized. ms. norton: madam speaker, i'm pleased to yield such time as he may consume to the chairman of the oversight subcommittee -- subcommittees information policy -- oversight's subcommittee on information policy, the author of the bill before us. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from missouri is recognized for as much time as he my consume. mr. clay: thank you, madam speaker. i also thank my colleague from the district of columbia for yielding. h.r. 1320, the federal advisory committee act amendments, strengthens one of our central open government laws. you know, advisory committees
provides the president and agencies with expert advice on complex issues. current examples include the national commission on fiscal responsibility and reform that was established to advise the president on policies to achieve fiscal sustainability and the national commission on the b.p. deepwater horizon oil spill. faca is intended to ensure that advisory committees, like these, provide objective advice and operate in a way that is open and accessible to the public. but over time faca has been undermined by inconsistent implementation. this bill closes loopholes that allow agencies to get around the act and makes the advisory committee process more transparent.
this bill is being brought up with an amendment that addresses feedback we received from the office of government ethics. the primary change addresses how agencies appoint members to advisory committees. the g.a.o. has identified improper designation of committee members as one of the primary problems with implementation of faca. g.a.o. found that some agencies are avoiding federal ethics rules by appointing members that should be appointed as special government employees as representative members. the amendment to h.r. 1320 will require agencies to properly designate committee members and require agency ethics officials to certify the designation. if an agency appoints a member
to represent a specific interest, the agency has to put information on its website justifying its decision and identify the interest the member represents. the amendment also makes improvements to the bill proposed by oversight committee ranking member issa. specifically, these changes include requiring agencies to establish a process that allows the public to nominate potential committee members and requiring agencies to disclose when a committee member is recused because of a conflict of interest. a section has also been added to the bill to make the bill consistent with the way trade advise -- advisory committee members are act. they are omitted by faca open
hearings requirements and h.r. 1320 will preserve that exemption. h.r. 1320 will shed light on who is advising the government, how they are advising the government and what they are saying. i urge my colleagues to support this important open government legislation, and, madam speaker, i yield back the balance of my time. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. the gentleman from alabama is recognized. mr. bonner: madam speaker, i don't have any further speakers on this side at this time. i would inquire if the distinguished lady from the district of columbia, does she have any additional speakers? ms. norton: i have no speakers, no further speakers, i say to my friend from alabama. mr. bonner: madam speaker, i'm happy to encourage members to happy to encourage members to support passage of this, and i