tv Key Capitol Hill Hearings CSPAN May 20, 2014 9:00pm-11:01pm EDT
give the department of defense that flexibility, the same type of thing that, if they found themselves in a bind for with the reactor this is past year, would be important not to find ourselveses in a bind if we would need it for this year. and i would also like to remind my colleagues that yes, we put some more money into nonproliferation this year after many years of cutting it but we put in significantly money amount of money into the nuclear armament piece. mr. chairman, i would just ask my colleagues to vote for this flexibility for the department of defense, i have no further speakers and i urge my colleagues to support my amendment with the underlying bill. i yield back. the chair: the gentlewoman yields back. the gentleman from california is recognized. i'm sorry, from alabama is recognized. mr. rogers: thank you, mr. speaker. i respect my friend from california, she's very knowledgeable on the budget but she's wrong on this amendment and urge a no society. i yield back. the chair: the question is on
the amendment offered by the gentlewoman from california. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair, the noes have it. the amendment is not agreed to. ms. sanchez: mr. chairman. i request the yeas and nays. the chair: the gentlewoman ask -- has asked for a recorded vote. pursuant to clause 6 of rule 18, further proceedings on the amendment offered by the gentlewoman from california will be postponed. it is now in order to consider amendment number 4 printed in house report 113-455. for what purpose does the gentleman from colorado seek recognition? mr. lamborn: mr. chairman, i have an amendment at the desk. the chair: the clerk will designate the amendment. the clerk: amendment number 4 printed in house report 113-455 offered by mr. lamborn of colorado. the chair: pursuant to house
resolution 585, the gentleman from colorado, mr. lamborn, and a member opposed each will control five minutes. the chair recognizes the gentleman from colorado. mr. lamborn: thank you, mr. chairman. when our soldiers, sailors, airmen, marines and defense civilians deploy overseas, the department of defense enters into agreements with the host nation to prohibit the taxation of the assistance provided by u.s. companies to support their missions. we have entered into such agreements with afghanistan, but in the last six years the afghan government has chosen to ignore these agreements, it has levied more than $1 billion in illegal taxes against our u.s. businesses, which are supporting our war fighters. last year we took action to withhold assistance funding in response to this illegal taxation. yet the afghan government continues to submit tax bills to our companies. if the firms refuse to pay, afghan officials threaten to deny them permits and visas, to
arrest company workers and to prohibit them from moving mission-essential equipment into and throughout the country. though our committee has now increased the amount of funding to be with held, i propose this amendment to hopefully -- withheld, i propose this amendment to hopefully end this wrong practice altogether. this would require two important steps forward. first, the secretary of defense would take a full account of illegal taxes leskied by the afghan government against american companies and, second, the secretary will establish a plan for the afghan government to reimburse the illegally levied taxes. in short, no u.s. companies should be threatened or financially punished for supporting our troops and department of defense civilians in afghanistan. this amendment strikes at the root of the problem and i urge its adoption. thank you and i reserve the balance of my time. the chair: the gentleman reserves the balance of his ime. for what purpose does the gentleman from washington rise?
>> i rise in opposition to the amendment. the chair: the gentleman is recognized for five minutes. mr. smith: thank you. i'm very sympathetic to the problem. this is certainly something that the afghan government should not be doing. as i understand the amendment, however, this would require the u.s. government to reimburse those private companies and then seek reimbursement from the afghan government. at the end of the day that is the problem and concern we have on our side. is that if we want to take all of the deliberate steps we can to try and require the afghans to repay this money, that's great. but i can see the little gathering of staff over there that disagrees with me, so maybe we'll have to work on this. but as i understand it, if that reimbursement cannot be achieved from the afghan government, this would require the u.s. government, u.s. taxpayers to reimburse these companies and for that reason i would be opposed unless someone can convince me otherwise. and i reserve the balance of my time. the chair: the gentleman reserves the balance of his time. the gentleman from colorado is recognized. mr. lamborn: thank you, mr. chairman. in response, and i appreciate
the gentleman's comments, the bookkeeping trouble that this would involve is first put on the afghan government, in an attempt to save the trouble to our own department of defense folks. and on your second point, i don't believe u.s. taxpayer dollars would be at risk because this would only be money withheld that would otherwise go to the afghan government and is committed for that purpose. is my understanding. so, you raise good questions but i think both of those objections are satisfied by this amendment. at this point, mr. chairman, i'd like to yield as much time as he may consume to the chairman of the full committee, representative mckeon. the chair: the gentleman from california is recognized. mr. mckeon: thank you, mr. chairman. i want to thank the gentleman for his concern and for bringing this issue to the floor. we did address this in the underlying bill, d.o.d. contractors are providing very important services that support the mission in afghanistan and they should not be illegally
taxed. we need to address this. i think the gentleman's amendment will move the process forward. i think we have time between now and the senate passage and conference to resolve the issue . also hopefully there will be a new president in afghanistan that will have a whole different way of addressing this situation. so what i would ask is that we do continue to work together on this as we move the process forward through conference. with that i yield back my time. the chair: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. the gentleman from colorado is recognized. mr. lamborn: mr. chairman, how much time is left on our side of the issue? the chair: the gentleman has two minutes remaining. mr. lamborn: ok. i reserve the balance of my time. the chair: the gentleman reserves. the gentleman from washington is recognized. mr. smith: thank you, mr. chairman. i yield myself the balance of my time. the problems are there in the drafting of this amendment.
yes, first, it does ask for the afghan government to step up and find money and do this. but if they don't it puts d.o.d. in the position of reimbursing them and that would come from money they would give to afghanistan anyway but that money they're giving to afghanistan, i'm not sure that's true, first of all, second of all, whatever money we're giving to afghanistan, we're giving it to them for a reason. so i think there is a problem here. there's also the problem of how can -- do we have a list of these contractors who have been illegally taxed? versus legally taxed? and how do we sort through all that? i'm not going to belabor the point. i'm going to oppose the amendment. i know how this works. i'm going to lose. so we'll work it out in conference. but i do have serious concerns about this amendment the way it is written and would urge a no vote. the chair: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. the gentleman from colorado is recognized. mr. lamborn: thank you, mr. chairman. to summarize, these are legitimate questions that the ranking member has raised. i appreciate his comments. and there are valid issues in
that it's not a clean or perfect situation. but the trouble is, $1 billion is a lot of money to our defense contractors. and to not try to address it would do a really big disservice to them. so i think it's worth tackling the difficulty that might be entailed in getting the paperwork done properly because the goal is worth doing. $1 billion is a lot of money. some of these companies might be big contractors, some of them might be small contractors. so i would urge the adoption of this amendment and, mr. chairman, i yield back the balance of my time. the chair: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. the question is on the amendment offered by the gentleman from colorado. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair, the ayes have it. he amendment is agreed to.
it is now in order to consider amendment number 5 printed in house report 113-455. for what purpose does the gentleman from california seek recognition? mr. garamendi: mr. chairman, i ask unanimous consent that my amendment, 040, be modified as placed before the desk. the chair: does the gentleman first offer the amendment? mr. garamendi: yes. the chair: the clerk will report the modification. the clerk: amendment number 5 printed in house report 113-455 offered by mr. garamendi of california. modification offered by mr. garamendi of california to amendment number 5, on page 5, line 14, replace afghan security forces with african nion standby force, a.s.f. the chair: are there objections to the modification?
without objection. pursuant to house resolution 585, the gentleman from california, mr. garamendi, and a member opposed will each control five minutes. the chair recognizes the gentleman from california. mr. garamendi: thank you, mr. chairman. for some time, like more than an hour today, this house debated and discussed the issue of boko haram and the terror that they are enacting throughout nigeria and the southern area of africa. this is not a new issue, this is an issue that's been ongoing among several violent extreme organizations operating in that area. we've seen this in sudan, we've heard about the lord's resistance army, we know this problem also -- violent extreme organizations in the somalia area. the question arises, how do these organizations finance themselves? well, over the years previously
it was blood diamonds and things of that sort. in recent years it's now become an issue of killing elephants and selling their tusks. this amendment deals with the violent extreme organizations and attempts to deal with the way in which they've been able to finance themselves. that is, illegally poaching animals, particularly elephants in africa. if we are going to deal with this, we're going to have to use some of the assets that are available through the american military. africa -- africom has shown that they can provide i.s.r. assets. is happened in mali with the violent extreme organization that eventually was dealt with in mali. the africom provided the use of the i.s.r. global hawk to
identify and to support the french troops. what this amendment would do would be to authorize the military, the department of defense, to work with african countries, to provide support as they attempt to deal with these violent extreme organizations that are illegally poaching animals and using that revenue from that poaching, particularly the sale of ivory, to support themselves. the amendment also provides for the opportunity for the africa union forces to receive assistance from the american -- tary in how to deal with how to position themselves to have the correct military units in place, how to use various intelligence sources that are available, and it also provides for the department of defense to become part of the
organizations that we now have in place to deal with illegal poaching throughout africa. that's basically what it is. had this been in place for the last couple of years, would boko haram been successful? well, it would be less successful. and they would have less opportunity to poach the very valuable elephants and their tusks. so i'd ask for this -- i would reserve the balance of my time and ask for support of this amendment. the chair: the gentleman reserves the balance of his time. for what purpose does the gentleman from texas -- >> i claim the time in opposition. the chair: the gentleman is recognized for five minutes. >> mr. chairman, i yield myself two minutes. the chair: the gentleman is recognized for two minutes. >> thank you. mr. chairman, this issue has been a longstanding concern of the gentleman from california, as well as other members. and there is certainly evidence that terrorist and criminal organizations use a variety of illegal methods to fund their
organizations. that includes wildlife trafficking, it includes human trafficking, it includes drug trafficking. mr. thornberry: it includes kidnapping for ransom, a whole variety of illegal methods are used to fund these organizations. now, in last year's ndaa we expanded the authority of the military to deal with ministries of interior so that, in fighting terrorism, they can have more options available to them. it's also those ministries of interior that deal with the -- with these wildlife trafficking issues. last year's bill also added 15 countries in africa to the list of those countries with which d.o.d. can partner on transnational criminal organizations involving drugs. so if -- for boko haram, they're already designated a terrorist organization. for them or for drugs, those authorities already exist. the question is, do we want to make it a priority of the military to focus on this
illegal poaching as a priority in itself? and my concern is that the military is already stretched thin. if it's terrorism, fine, if it's these transnational organizations, fine. but to give the military poaching as a priority would be a mistake. the other point i'd make is that the president's budget for the state department cut funding for this very purpose this year. last year they spent about $54 billion. this year the president asked for less than $30 billion. so my suggestion to the member is that perhaps he could focus on the president's budget request for the state department, the department of the interior, law enforcement agencies, all of which are engaged in this and that would be a better use of resources. i reserve the balance of my time. the chair: the gentleman reserves. mr. garamendi: the gentleman from texas makes a useful and interesting argument, but
neglebts to focus on one of the principal ways in which these organizations fund themselves and that is illegal poaching and tusks. it's about an $8 billion business and this does not in any way detour the current power that the department of defense has but allows them to engage with the wsh did those organizations in these governments that deal specifically with the conservation of the species in those countries. it does not prioritize. it simply gives an additional role and augments the military's use of their equipment, particularly the i.s.r. equipment, to focus pecifically, but only on the
poaching issue. it is very clear from studies that have been done by conservation organizations through ask that this is a -- throughout africa that this is extreme. we ought not to ignore that. i would ask for a positive vote on this matter, in that it does detour in any way from what the gentleman from texas says the military is already doing, but adds to it. i yield back. the chair: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. the gentleman from texas. mr. thornberry: i yield two minutes to the gentlelady from indiana, mrs. walorski. mrs. walorski: i thank the gentleman from texas. i rise to oppose the amendment. while i appreciate the intention, we have immense security challenges in africa. defense has been cut over a trillion dollars and the military is facing shortfalls in readiness. and terrorism threats are expanding. given that the military cannot
meet our current requirements in africa, i don't think it's wise to add new requirements. military commanders in africa have testified about shortfalls in intelligence, crisis enforcers and to meet the new security requirements in africa. no military commander has highlighted wildlife trafficking. nor have they recommend the it be prioritized before this committee. combating wildlife trafficking should not be a core d.o.d. mission. they recognize that combating wildlife trafficking is not a co-d.o.d. function and thus the combating does not set forth. the d.o.d. should not be duplicating efforts that are occurring within the interagency, including the intelligence community, the law enforcement community and the state department which are working on and collecting
information on this issue. i thank the gentleman and i yield back. the chair: the gentlelady yields back. the gentleman from texas. mr. thornberry: if there is a terrorism connection to this illegal poaching, the military can stop it just like other forms of terrorist financing, but as an independent objective for the military, we are stretched too thin already and for that reason i recommend that the members reject this amendment and i yield back. the chair: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. the question is on the amendment as modified as offed by the gentleman from california. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair, the amendment is not agreed to. >> i ask for a vote. the chair: pursuant to clause 6, rule 18, further proceedings on the amendment offered by the gentleman from california will e postponed.
it is now in order to consider amendment number 6 printed in house report 113 i-4 5. for what purpose does the gentleman from montana seek recognition? mr. daines: i have an amendment at the desk. the clerk: amendment number 6 printed in house report 113-455 offered by mr. daines of montana. the chair: pursuant to house resolution 585, the gentleman from montana, mr. daines, and a member opposed, each will control five minutes. the chair recognizes the gentleman from montana. mr. daines: i yield myself such time as i may consume. the chair: the gentleman is recognized. mr. daines: our country's intercontinental ballistic missiles make our world safer. it advances the cause of peace and promotes our national security interests around the world. the defense department put forward a nuclear force
structured plan under the new start treaty and committed to maintaining 450 nuclear launchers in a warm status. in doing so the pentagon recognizes represerving our. the base bill would sunset the warm status requirement in 2021. i believe this is unwise and premature. first and foremost, we don't know what the future holds and whether it will be in our security interests to shut down some of our silos seven years from now. on the other hand, what we do know maintaining our nuclear launches provides maximum flexibility to respond to nuclear threats against the american people and our allies and we know preserving this capability complicates our adversary capability to target our nuclear assets. maintaining our silos is in the best interest of taxpayers
because rebuilding them would be very expensive. in short, there is no justification deciding today how many silos will be needed to safeguard our national security interests. i urge to strike the i will-advised sunset legislation. and i reserve. the chair: for what purpose does the gentleman from tennessee seek recognition? >> i rise in opposition. the chair: the gentleman is recognized. >> thr violates a bipartisan agreement that was reached in the armed services committee. i wish the gentleman would focus on the fact that micro managing our nation's nuclear defenses is really not in the best interests of our country. i urge the gentleman to realize this is a highly technical issue. we have some 450 miss will
silos. mr. cooper: this would change the status of those. these are probably the least sur vivel of all our nuclear weapons. they have been targeted by the russians and others over the decades. it's very appropriate that we have a survivable nuclear deterrent. these land-based missiles are probably the least survivable. and as i understand the way the couldent is drafted, this prevent testing of these silos. i know these are not the gentleman's intent but we need to make sure we are not overreaching and hamstringing our nuclear defenses. no secret that these sponsors are from the states of colorado and this might be a parochial amendment more than a nuclear
defense amendment. i hope it's not the case but leads one to think in that direction. mr. chairman, i would like to yield one minute of my time to the distinguished ranking member of the committee, if he would like to take it now. i'll reserve the remainder of my time. the chair: the gentleman reserves. the gentleman from montana is recognized. mr. daines: while the president is commander of chief, this is a question of micro manage. this is to provide and maintain a navy. it is our duty and responsibility to help shape our nation's defense policy. bm are in hardened silos and eastern. . icbm without them, five nuclear
warheads could successfully disarm the u.s. and now i would like to yield one minute to my friend, the gentleman from new york state dakota, kevin cramer. the chair: the gentleman from recognized. mr. cramer: with regard to the claims of pa oakialism, the experts. technical while i'm content with the department of defense's recent force structure announcement on complying with the new start treaty to maintain 454 icbm's silos in warm status, i oppose the hard stopgate that maintains these missile silos no later than 2021. members of the senate and secretary of defense, chairman of the joint chief of staffs have said that sustainment of
ought not tirad and to be done. maintaining and investing in the modernization of this weapons system is important as any other system in any other nuclear leg. and from what i can tell from what the people of north dakota know, it is cheaper to maintain them should we err in our judgment. i urge passage of the amendment and yield back. the chair: the gentleman's time has expired. the gentleman from tennessee is recognized. mr. cooper: i yield two minutes to the distinguished ranking member of the committee. mr. smith: i strongly oppose this amendment. any sensedoesn't make whatsoever. what the bill does is you can't touch these things until 2021. we don't like this in the first place. this is micro managing d.o.d.'s ability to make decisions about how best to maintain our nuclear
deterrence. a fine example of why d.o.d. is going to be in so much trouble. any effort they are going to make money is going to be blocked. the people will rise up and say you can't do that because it negatively impacts my constituents. the thing that is truly awful about this one, it doesn't negatively impact constituents. and it's not a hard stop deat. it's 2021, when it is sunseated. congress wants to extend it can go ahead and extend it. d.o.d. should not be forced to say if a silo exists, it has to be maintained forever, which is basically what this amendment says. it says it is completely impossible that under any set of circumstances, might it be in the best interest of the department of defense and national security of this nation to get rid of even one silo. that doesn't make sense.
the underlying bill more than protects the parochial interests of the sponsors here to make sure d.o.d. can't touch it until 2021. they have to offer an amendment to strip it out so it goes on forever. it doesn't make any sense. this is micro managing for parochial interests. people will rise up and say we have to stop them, no we don't. we have to let d.o.d. to make intelligent decisions to protect national security and at a minimum we ought to have a sunset without having to remove that tiny possibility. i urge opposition. the chair: the gentleman's time has expired. the gentleman from montana is recognized. mr. daines: i reserve the balance of my time. the chair: the gentleman reserves the balance of his time. the gentleman from tennessee is recognized.
mr. cooper: how much time do i have remaining? he chair: 1 1/2 minutes. mr. cooper: i would like to yield to the gentleman from california 0 seconds. the chair: the gentleman is recognized for 30 seconds. mr. garamendi: i took up a amendment a moment ago about how we use our resources to keep these miss will silos opened when they are not needed. we are talking about billions and billions of dollars. if we are really concerned about how we deploy our precious money, then we ought not be doing this amendment. i yield back my time. the chair: the gentleman yields.
mr. daines: i reserve. the chair: the gentleman reserves the balance of his time. the gentleman from tennessee is recognized. mr. cooper: i urge my colleagues to oppose this amendment. it's poorly drafted and prevents routine testing and maintenance of the silos which couldn't be in the intention of the authors and micro manages the defense department. for them to give you seven more years of relay. it sets a new level of parochialism and greed. so i hope the members will reject this amendment. the chair: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. the gentleman from montana is recognized. . mr. daines: i yield back the balance of my time. the chair: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. the question is on the
amendment offered by the gentleman from montana. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair, the ayes have it. he amendment is agreed to. >> i ask for the yeas and nays. the chair: does the gentleman ask for a recorded vote? pursuant to clause 6 of rule 18, further proceedings on the amendment offered by the gentleman from montana will be postponed. it is now in order to consider amendment number 7 printed in house report 113-455. for what purpose does the gentleman from colorado seek recognition? mr. lamborn: mr. chairman, i have an amendment at the desk. the chair: the clerk will designate the amendment. the clerk: amendment number 7 printed in house report 113- 455. offered by mr. lamborn of
colorado. the chair: pursuant to house resolution 585, the gentleman from colorado, mr. lamborn, and a member opposed each will control five minutes. the chair recognizes the gentleman from colorado. mr. lamborn: mr. chairman, most americans do not realize that 28% of the land across our great country is owned by the federal government. in the 11 most western states, the federal government owns a staggering 47% of all land. in my state of colorado the federal government owns 36% of the land, over 1/3 of all land in colorado is owned and operated here out of washington, d.c. management of these lands is often controversial, particularly when the federal government owns such a significant portion of the land of a state or locality. there are often situations where there are competing and conflicting uses of this publicly owned land. this federal ownership of public land is administered through a variety of federal agencies and bureaus, making things potentially difficult
for states and localities. even more difficult. this public land serves many functions, including in some cases as a prime training ground for the u.s. military. in colorado, for example, the new combat aviation brigade at fort carson flies their helicopters up into the mountains around colorado springs for training. to practice high altitude landings in rugged terrain, which is a crucial skill for combat in countries like afghanistan, the army must get permission from the various parts of the federal government that owns the land. over the last few years, the forest service and the bureau of land management and other agencies have reduced the number of landing sites that are permissible. in the latest permit they old the army that congress has not made national security a priority for public lands. unfortunately this is not just isolated to colorado. across the country military bases are continually fighting with other government agencies to maintain their access to public lands.
today my amendment will help set the record straight. national security should be the top priority of our government and that most certainly includes the ownership of public land. land owned and operated by the federal government. we should apply the rule of common sense. unless there is an obvious reason not to, public lands should of course be available so that men and women in uniform can receive realistic, effective training that will save lives in combat. we must remember that the first job of the federal government is to protect our nation. i urge support for my amendment resolving that national security should be a top priority for public lands. thank you, mr. chairman, i reserve the balance of my time. the chair: the gentleman reserves the balance of his time. for what purpose does the gentleman from washington seek recognition? mr. smith: claim time in opposition. the chair: the gentleman is recognized for five minutes. mr. smith: thank you, mr. chairman. there's a lot of competing interests for public lands, certainly national security is one of them. it's not the only one. there's domestic aviation,
there are all kinds of considerations. this is not terribly binding, as it's the sense of congress and thus doesn't really change the law. i do however think it sets bad precedent, that somehow the department deaf fence is going to hold sway over public lands, over all other interests, regardless of what they are. we've had, you know, many, many interests in our public lands. certainly defense is one of them. i don't think it should be paramount. therefore i oppose the amendment and reserve the balance of my time. the chair: the gentleman reserves the balance of his time. the gentleman from colorado is recognized. mr. lamborn: thank you, mr. chairman. i just don't want it to happen again that the forest service or any other bureaucracy can tell the men and women who are training to protect our country that they can't train and that congress has never even addressed this situation. i at least want to have a resolution on record expressing the sense of congress that national defense is a priority. and that's the way our constitution is written, so i
think that this makes all kinds of sense and i would urge its adoption. mr. chairman, i reserve the balance of my time. the chair: the gentleman reserves. the gentleman from washington is recognized. mr. smith: thank you. i yield myself such time as i may consume. it sort of depends on what the forest service -- why the forest service wants to limit that use. if there are other legitimate interests in the area and the forest service doesn't want them testing missiles or -- sorry, test firing, whatever it is they're test firing, i think there needs to be a balance between those interests. it is conceivable the forest service has something they're trying to protect that the d.o.d. has not thought about. i think a balance of those interests is better than making one agency paramount over others. the forest service does not know much about the department of defense, but i would submit the department of defense doesn't know much about what the forest service is trying to protect. as a -- it's a matter of both sides doing their job and striking the proper balance. so i yield back the balance of my time and simply urge a no vote.
the chair: the gentleman yields back the balance of his time. the gentleman from colorado is recognized. mr. lamborn: may i inquire how much time is remaining? the chair: the gentleman has two minutes remaining. mr. lamborn: mr. chairman, in conclusion, i will just say that there are balancing interests, there are competing interests that should be at many times debated and weighed and that's actually what the army at fort carson does. they have entered into the permitting agreements with the forest service and the bureau of land management, agreeing with the concerns raised by those two bureaucracies. so they have worked together in a cooperative fashion. what i'm addressing though is when the forest service comes out and says congress has never addressed this issue, i think that that's wrong. and now is the time to set the record straight. and this amendment does set the record streat up. -- straight. we are expressing that national security is a priority. that's what the constitution says and that's what we're stating right here. mr. chairman, i yield back the balance of my time.
and i ask for a a yes vote. the chair: the question is on -- ask for a yes vote. the chair: the question is on the amendment offered by the gentleman from colorado. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. in the opinion of the chair, the ayes have it. he amendment is agreed to. for what purpose does the gentleman from colorado seek recognition? mr. lamborn: mr. chairman, i move that the committee do now rise. the chair: the question is on the motion that the committee rise. those in favor say aye. those opposed, no. the ayes have it. the motion is adopted. accordingly, the committee rises.
the committee of the whole house on the state of the union, having had under consideration h.r. 4435, directs me to report that it has come to no resolution thereon. the speaker pro tempore: the chair of the committee of the whole house on the state of the union reports that the committee has had under consideration h.r. 4435 and has ome no resolution thereon. -- has come to no resolution thereon. the chair lays before the house the following personal requests. the clerk: leave of absence requested for mr. thompson of mississippi for today. the speaker pro tempore: without objection, the request s granted.
alzheimer's and the effect that it has. i'd like to quote from that newspaper. gasps were audible as the images flashed before the gathering scientists at an alzheimer's disease center pathology conference. on the screen before them were photos of a brain severely wasted with age, with what looked like silver rivers of atrophy cutting deeply through the tissues. even for the experts it can be shocking to see the damage that alzheimer's disease inflicts on the aging brain. what can stop the devastation of alzheimer's? without better answers from researchers, the degenerative brain disease, already the nation's sixth leading cause of death, will be diagnosed in as many as 16 million aging baby boomers by 2050. unchecked it will rob millions of their memories and lives, their past and future, even as
it threatens to overwhelm the health care system. tonight in a bipartisan one-hour session, we're going to talk about alzheimer's. unfortunately our time was cut short. but we'll take this up again in the weeks ahead. as we deal with one of the most profound and expensive and damaging issues americans face. i have here a diagram that explains what is going to happen. the alzheimer's cost to medicare and medicaid in the years ahead. right now it's $122 billion and it will rise in 2020 to $195 billion, to $346 billion in 2030. and by 2050 it will be approaching $1 trillion. we have a problem. americans, every family is facing this issue. my family has and i suspect
every other family in this nation at one time or another already has faced this issue and they will in the years ahead. this is not a new issue for the congress. it's an issue that's been dealt with, there has been legislation introduced and in a few moments i'll talk about some of the bills that have been introduced by my colleagues here in the congress, both on the democratic and the republican side of the aisle. but this issue has to be addressed. and the principle thing we need to do is to provide research and care and support for the families that have this issue in their midst. i want to take up a couple of other charts and then turn to y colleague from kentucky. on this chart, we deal with the issue of what is going to happen with the funding. if we're going to solve this problem, let me just go back -- well, we'll deal with this. if we're going to solve this
problem, we're going to have to increase the funding. we are spending around $5.5 billion a year on cancer through the national institutes of health. hiv-aids is close to $3 billion a year. cardiovascular issues are being around $2 billion. alzheimer's is down here at just over $566 million. we're not yet at $1 billion on this yet, as we can see here. this is going to be the most expensive illness facing the medicare and medicaid population. in the future years. we also know that deaths from the illnesses that have the greatest funding, breast cancer down 2%, prostate cancer down 8%, heart disease down 16%, stroke down 23%, and h.i.v. a remarkable success with deaths
now declining by 42%. on the other hand, deaths from alzheimer's are increasing at a rate of 68%. so we're seeing this extraordinary shift occurring in the illnesses that are facing americans and their families. we're seeing this extraordinary increase in alzheimer's death, as we see success, thankfully success. often that success is a direct result of what is happening with the research that's going on. mr. garamendi: i would like to turn to mr. smith and spend the next 15 minutes a dialogue about this problem. mr. smith: i thank my friend from california for yielding and i rise today, mr. speaker, to talk about this devastating
disease that impacts nearly every family in america. according to the aleds i'mer's association, aleds i'mer's is disease in ssiest america and accounts for 20% of medicare spending. these numbers will only continue to increase, making discovery of a cure or way to delay onset critical to our economy. across the united states, more than 5 million americans are living with als i'mer'. someone will develop this disease every 67 seconds. and it is the sixth leading cause of death in the united states. but it's not the financial drain that is the moist devastating. touched. has been
migrate uncle was touched by the disease. my umping will was lost trying to find his way home. i remember about confused this uncle that i knew could be so confused and lose his way. i also experienced many my family with my wife's grandfather. wvent to visit him and he didn't recognize her. someone she loved so much didn't know who she was has still stuck with me today. this disease is emotionally wrenching. beyond the direct emotional and hysical impact, primary care delivers are stretched to their limits. they come home to care for their family member. finding a cure. introduced h.r. 43 1 with
representative paul tonko. .r. 43 1, alzheimer's accountability act, seeks to find a cure for the disease. by receiving a professional budget directly, congress will be in a better position to see the needs and promise of researchers and news that to make critical decisions. today, h.r. 4351 which is a bipartisan -- my friend paul tonko and myself filed this legislation, we have 80 co-sponsors and a senate companion bill and imagining momentum. i thank my colleague for on wing me to shine a light alzheimer's disease and co-sponsor h.r. 43 1 and help funding this a top priority.
mr. garamendi: thank you for being part to what my knowledge is a first bipartisan hour. this issue isn't a democratic or republican issue, left or right issue, this is a true american tragedy and one that is going to be a true american financial as well as a family problem. one of the gentlemen that has been involved in this from the early days is my friend from new york, mr. tonko. thanks for joining us. you were with one of our colleagues for. >> we love louise slaughter and to louise sympathies slaughter to her husband. but representative garamendi,
thanks for bringing us together in such a meaningful way in a bipartisan spirited way to address the issue of alzheimer's disease and it is my honor to sponsor the measure. and aleds i'mer's knows no boundaries, age, whatever. and it is important for us to come together in support for the alzheimer's community. recently, i joined the advocates that came to the hill here in washington from around the country and i heard folks being diagnosed in their 20's, a 40's. an who died in his it is in the low-age category, and so it's important for us to invest all-out effort to
in all sorts of developments that respond to the individuals and families that live with alzheimer's. the accountability act is i think so sound an approach because it addresses a professional budget, a professionally-inspired budget that will have the scientists, the clinicians, those most in the front lines of addressing alzheimer's and their patients forecasting what their needs are. we set up a national project that requires planning until the year 2025. and the measure introduced by representative guthrie and myself it will require a professional judgment that will name the price tag for each year as we go to 2025. it won't be up to us as a political force but the clinical
health care provider community that will have the best estimates of what's needed. as i gather at the town halls that we have by requirement to have an alzheimer's town hall to know of the progress or lack thereof, you hear heart-wrenching stories. they say they go to work because their spouse is struggling. they search employment. so as to pull themselves out of that day-to-day routine because it's wearing on their relationship and spend every dollar they earn to go towards respite. people mourn twice, first one r when the diagnose happens and lost their loved one somewhat or lost their permit and mourn again with the physical departure. and one who comes to mind a high chool buddy who said, he knows my voice but doesn't know my name. this is a priority, an urgency
and let's go forward and let's go in a bipartisan way, let's get it done, make certain the planning is there, the resources are there through research for respite care for the services that are required so as to address the dignity and deliver hope for the families who live with it on a daily basis and who persona be e entire lost in their midst. it is an honor to be with you and work with you in partnership in a spirited way to make things happen. mr. garamendi: thank you very much. i know mr. guthrie may have some additional remarks and we have about seven minutes and maybe take three minutes and talk about some of the legislation that's here. i'm going to go through this
very quickly. mr. markey thruse introduced h.r. 1507, this deals with the social security and medicare diagnosis and the accountability act which you have introduced. alzheimer's 9, the resolution. next month is national alzheimer's month and this will be part of that effort to talk about this issue around the world. the pilot act to keep elderly people in their homes introduced by chris smith, who will join us the next time we come out on this issue. nd also h.r. 2975, the aleds i'mer's caregiverers care act. and again deals with the kind of support you were talking about. 76, f these -- and h.r. 29
missing alzheimer's' disease alert program, dealing with elderly, those who wander off. all of them in one way or another deal with this problem. the one thing that is not among these is specific money from research. mr. guthrie. i know you have to some additional comments. mr. guthrie: thanks representative tonko for moving forward and i will have to give my sympathies to mrs. slaughter. i know she is from upstate from new york, she has a little bit of kentucky mountain a little bit. and that connection we had and she has been special to me and my prayers are with her. doing into this, 2050,
alzheimer's disease will cost the federal treasury a trillion dollars, i remember thinking, those are migrate-grandkids and i did the math, i'm going to be 86 in 2050. the generation that will be in that category is me. not some long off issue. d so it is something i'm i'm the end of the end of the baby boomer. and not just the stress on the federal budget but the dignity of the person with the disease, the stress on the family dealing with the disease and emotion is why it is so important. and i saw it from a great uncle when i was a young boy and later on in life figured out what was
happening and we didn't understand what was going on. but we do now and something we need to put the efforts of both parties. we are standing together the effort to move forward and when my generation is retired, our children aren't going to sustain it financially or emotionally and something we need to do today. mr. tonko: as representative guthrie said, you know, the trillion dollars, we are at the trillion dollar mark today and the tragedy of the situation is that for every dollar spent on alzheimer's today less than a penny is spent on research to find a cure. we have to do better than that. the hope, the miracle lies in research and we have trained clinicians and medical community
that is raring to go and we need to invest in a far more significant way and it was a message we heard from our advocates when they came on the hill. and again, i think it goes without saying, we all commit to that research budget. honor to join you this evening in this very special caucus. mr. garamendi: i would like to close with a statement of hope and statement of opportunity. here's what happens when you spend money on research and on treatment. breast cancer down 2%. deaths from these cancers. heart disease down, stroke down, -down, that's what research will do. alzheimer's is up 68%. that's what happens when you spend this kind of money. cancer, over $ billion a year and as a result, decline in scan
ser. hiv-aids. you see the extraordinary success of that. cardiovascular, decline in each of these causes of death. alzheimer's, right around half a billion dollars. the result is this. increase deaths. so we have a way of answering this question of what to do with this, and that is turn our focus to the research and the care and support for the families. that should be our watch word. that is a bipartisan way of going after this and we can focus on 435 members of this house and in the senate. bipartisan issue with a known path to a solution. with that, we are out of time. i thank my republican colleague
from kentucky and my friend who is often on the floor with me, mr. tonko. we are going to do this back in the month of june and several of our republican colleagues who wanted to be here also and we'll go at this and move forward with a solution. mr. speaker, we yield back our time. the speaker pro tempore: pursuant to clause 12-a rule 1, the chair
out --house has dabbled gaveled out. >> they are working on 2015 policies. we are joined with a congressional reporter. how much is in there for the pentagon? what about afghanistan? bill right now i 600 elliott dollars. $60 million. the pentagon has asked for a little less. the house has stepped in and made a bunch of changes to what the pentagon suggestions are not just for the overseas funding, but also for domestic programs and long-term programs. bills.itch some
they're preserving the aircraft carrier fleet. the white house has come out and threatened to veto this bill saying with the changes, it has cost over $50 billion in savings over the next five years. >> is go to one of the headlines. the house bill protects benefits . what are some details behind that? had asked for a reduction in housing allowances for troops. -- turnover call the tri-care system. gas for changes on how the benefits were and how much they can save when they shop on base. the house has rejected all of those. we have heard rumblings that they want to reject them as well. to report nexted february. most lawmakers want to wait and see what those folks have to say. the pentagon says they want to see these changes now. it could mean long-term savings
down the road here those things being considered does not have any of those changes. the white house has said you're limiting how much money can go to readiness. you're hurting the flexibility of the military. >> there is a unanimous vote. what does that say about the bipartisanship on this bill between that chairman and the ranking democrat? >> the represented had said quite a few time see things hard decisions need to be made. he will be introducing an amendment this week to start another base closure, something that pentagon desperately wants something lawmakers have faith for. they'll see something that will hurt jobs in their district. think there's a feeling on both the parties that this is a tough down -- tough
time to make a lot of these decisions even though down the road it might mean more financial problems. when thehat bode well house gets around to it? >> i think they'll be quite a few fights come especially on the amendments. are some provisions dealing with sexual assault. contentiousfor some lord debate. to allowprovisions troops to carry loaded weapons on the basis. >> whatin response about immigration? >> they said they would back off immigration bill. the look at ways to allow folks to get citizenship through enlisting in the armed forces. for now, eric cantor says he does not want that as part of the bill and he wants to keep it
away. there will be plenty more fights plenty of folks looking to see policy the way they see fit. >> go back to the veto threat to you treated a while ago a reminder though obama has bullet through on a veto threat twice. that is a lowest of any president in the last 13 130 years. is there a redline? >> that is what they are saying. this will be his fifth or six are in a row the obama administration has threatened to veto this defense authorization bill. i do not know that anyone here on the hill is too worried about that threat right now. this is the house version. a lot of these concerns will be considered by the senate. we get a comic could be a different bill. i do not think anyone in the
house is too worried about a veto right now. leo shane from the military times. he is also on twitter. thank you for joining us. >> thank you. >> holes are close in primary close now and are primary races in several states. oregon --in idaho and what we know is associated press has declared senator mitch o'connell the winner in the republican primary in kentucky. statentucky secretary of will be his democratic challenger. in pennsylvania, the democratic nominee for governor. george are governor has won the state republican gubernatorial primary against two challengers. for more about the primaries, go to our website.
we will bring you the speeches from the kentucky senate race. >> that of the federal communication commission told members of congress that the fcc was following a court decision when it voted last week to move ahead on a proposed rule that could allow internet providers like netflix to pay for so-called fast lane services. the proposal is in a response to decisions challenging the net neutrality rule. >> we will call to order the subcommittee on the communications and technology. i want to welcome members and our witness, the chairman of the federal communications commission should mr. wheeler, we are delighted you can make time and spent time with us on this important day. so much is going on.
six months ago, the subcommittee met for the first time and welcome mr. wheeler in, the new chairman. today, let me welcome mr. wheeler back good we need to review the record of action and selected in action taken under the first six months of your leadership. unfortunately on the given some recent actions, here we might be heading into some rough waters. when we last met, i offered some advice to chairman wheeler. i urge them to heed the words of reject calls contrary to congressional contempt. the second, i urge them to bear in mind that evening seemingly small changes could have significant impact on the marketplace. i called upon all of the members of the commission to discharge duties and a view of the technological landscape. in sum, my advice is that they
must approach the duties of humility and restraint. unfortunately, my advice was ignored. in december, we had get to know that the d c circuit court of appeals will once again reject the attempt to regulate the internet and could only speculate whether the commission would have a third attempt. sadly, we know the answer. the item the commission has opted last week is up for the idea -- this reinvigorated willingness to consider regulating the internet under title ii under the to medications act. i come back to a world in which there was only one service. the monitor medications landscape there's no resemblance to the world title ii was meant
to regulate. everyactical consequences -- every classification regulates every possible aspect of the internet. we should all consider the haspects that the fcc authority over internet access and what that means for innovation in the telephone network of yesteryear. we should be aware that this could open the door for the state to regulate internet. contrary to any intended effects, the reclassification under title ii valhall -- harm consumers and stifle investment. when theat a time commission is taking steps toward greater growth and innovation across internet access. forms. the commission is contravening rules undermine those very efforts and compromise of fundamental approaches of the
bush and clinton administrations that laid the foundation of the internet we know today. struggling under a action of the fcc illegally struggling. required under the hell communication at, the fcc has failed to complete its review of the limitations brought cap property. it has been six years says -- since they held the last mandate. rather than focusing that the rules reflect reality, the chairman has announced that the commission will scrap the 2010 review and begin the 2014 review. notwithstanding the sale record, the fcc move forward to make major changes to the regulations that govern media ownership. adopted changes to its rules has determined the local station ownership role. the fcc says it would have
certain agreements. ,n order to comply with rules it would force broadcasters into service service agreements that are beneficial to ensure local content in smaller markets. these changes do not bring benefits to the communities served by these broadcasters and how it would serve the public interest. the fcc reform has been an ongoing priority. asare deeply invested in and the mistreated by the passage in -- we are deeply invested in this. we are troubled by the fcc's seemingly flawed process. they chose to restrict license transfers. this action was not debated by the commissioners, nor is the subject to any kind of boat but rather it was announced -- any kind of vote, but rather it was
announced. internet proposal. after having provided the material to the democratic commissioners on the press, fcc open meeting. the concern raised by these reports is only compounded by revisedons that it's draft of another item scheduled for vote was not presented in to the closing minutes of the evening before. the revise item before the open meeting and i did contain more than 3000 revisions -- and it contain more than 3000 revisions. the process that got us this rulemaking today is flawed. for closeree
scrutiny and analysis necessary for decision-making. these decisions are anomalies. the transformative impact of the evolution of technology from analog to digital to narrowband and broadband has forever altered our lives. in theon continues commission has before the issues i mentioned and many more. all significant and their impact in our lives. reliever to build on the process. i hope we can move forward in a direction that the cap's this critical sector of they economy and facilitate its intended growth and job creation back, and i yield recognize my friend from
california, the ranking member of the subcommittee, for her opening statement and >> thank you, mr. chairman, and thank you to all of my colleagues, and welcome back to the committee, chairman wheeler. dive intodo a deep the chairman's proposal as well as some of the other major issues that are before the fcc, i think it would be well for us to step back and appreciate what i believe is one of the most consequential inventions in human history. this was dreamed of and built by disruptors. it is an american story. it is the product of american genius. the internet. word, but it really takes one's breath away in terms of the arc of history.
it is not only an invention. it has reshaped lives, economies , andand around the world our thinking and our debate today really should be viewed, i think, through the prism of a critical step that we are taking now in the 21st century. the internet is a continuing of change -- continuum of change. open, and itsle, innovations continue. they power individuals, entire not only inarning, our economy but economies around the world and serving humanity in countless ways. place, and has taken here we are in the second decade of the 21st century, so this is huge. this is huge.
is behind doort number one, door number to, door number three where it is the "price is right." this is huge. going toisions are affect every single american going forward, just as it has in the past, and it will continue regulators,f us, innovators, consumers, legislators, we have to get this right. high, and are very america cannot lose. it has been our leadership that has advanced the digital age, and now is not the time, and actually, i do not think there should ever be a time to unravel the values that have really been the hallmarks and the bulwark of the internet.
so the question is how do we seized the future? at least in my view, that is what the question is. i know what i want to see continue. openness, free, accessible. these are also the hallmarks of our democracy, and that is why this has been such an ouraordinary export of country. i know what i don't want. i do not want this to become an auction, selling off the best in bits and pieces. faster lanesy for and others cannot pay, and they get stuck in the slow lane. some giant company blocking content and others discriminating so they can sell their stuff to keep the other guy stymied. that is not a very pretty description, but it is a street description of what can be at hand. day to bery
essentially the fourth of july for american innovation so that it just keeps bursting. it just keeps bursting, and i see it every day in my congressional district. 10 years, 25rd years, 50 years, i want this to continue, and we should all be thinking on a grand scale, because this growth and this economic driver should be for everyone. we need smart, savvy regulations, regulatory decisions. we need a congress that is engaged in this and a congress that is vigilant, and i plan to be, so what should the fcc do? i think in all the articles you read, there is this debate. should it be 706, or should it be title 2? anhink we have to have
understanding of what has made the internet what it is today and what basic values need to be protected and preserved, and then what that is going to look like, and there is more on top of all of this. can anyone here today pieced together the effects of a comcast time warner merger and and at&t directv merger on consumers and a free and open internet? massive decisions and massive pieces that are moving forward, and what is going to happen to innovation? walden, ian, chairman urge you to convene a hearing to examine these issues here. i think they deserve to be examined and to be debated and saidions asked, so, as i earlier, every person in the country will be affected by the outcome of these decisions that are before the commission and
i look forwardso to questioning chairman wheeler today. i also ask for unanimous consent for two letters, two very important letters, began to into the record. one, signed by more than 100 venture capitalists and angel investors who support simple, strong, enforceable rules against online discrimination and access fees and the other, signed by more than 100 internet companies, small and large, mostly small, which support a free and open internet. >> without objection. >> and i do not know if i have any time remaining. i think i have gone over, but with that, i yield back what i don't have. >> i think the gentlelady for her opening statement and her letters, and we now turn to mr. fred up to and from michigan for his comments. >> mr. chairman, oversight is an
important part of this committee's objective. we have had lots of hearings with all of the fcc commissioners to address issues of natural importance -- national importance and to make sure we promote jobs and innovation, and today we will continue that discussion to ensure that the fcc works in a way that benefits consumers, industry, and certainly the economy, and i thank you for coming today. in the six months since mr. wheeler was confirmed as chair, he has addressed a number of items, including the ip transition and just this past week the auctions and net neutrality. i appreciate the chairman's leadership on some of these but have serious concerns with others. chairman wheeler started with a review, and with a this committee has spent a lot it,ime working to conform
but i was disappointed to see some of the process failures that occurred last week. there was an open item being circulated as late as midnight before the vote on one item, and in what appears to be partisan sharing with democrats in as much as 24 hours before sharing them with republicans is concerning. affiliation, representatives must be given an equal amount of time. --h instances of favoritism additionally, i continue to be concerned about the commission's ongoing compliance to complete the 2010 quadrangle -- quadrennial review. it has nonetheless move forward with changes that effectively bar joint sales agreements and change treatment of shared
service agreements under its media attribution rules. the absence ofn the statutorily required media ownership review to raise significant questions about the commissions commitment to making decisions informed by fax and utilizing sound process, and lastly, i am troubled by the chairman's insistence of attempting to regulate the internet by rules that were done by 19th-century railroad greg's in an attempt to have the monopolies of the past. the internet has flourished over the light touch regulatory scheme, and subjecting it to burden some rags is a leap in the wrong direction. some regs. nobody wants telephone service to look like it did in 1984, and we certainly shouldn't wish for
this access to return to that either. ,his is vital to our autonomy and action on even small items can have broad impact. national economy and commission action on even small items can have broad impact. thank chairman wheeler for being here today. look forward to working toward a bipartisan measure, transparent and responsible actions that do benefit consumers, job creation and our economy. i yield my balance and time to be split between mr. vlada and mr. bart. >> thank you, chairman for yielding. i appreciate you holding this hearing today. welcome chairman wheeler. thanks for being here. the communications technology industry is heralded as a vibrant, dynamic and productive sector of our economy. set works that service to ip based platforms had the flexibility to grow and advance in large part because they have not been subjected to the stifling hand of legacy government regulation. we pursued a light touch regulatory approach to the
internet ecosystem because we've seen time and again it serves as catalyst to job creation and competition. look forward to develop policies that would further this growth, we would be remiss to overlook the significance regulatory restrain has been fundamental component of the success. that's why i'm concerned with some of the proponents. broadband internet access services, telecommunications under title 2 of the communications act. this would be an extreme exercise of government overreach and likely result in failed websites, downgraded and poor customer service, less choice and flexibility for consumers, businesses and stifling innovation through regulation. attempts to manufacture and shape markets' outcome proposed solutions in search of problems imposed antiquated regulations will frustrate future progress and innovation. i intend to introduce legislation that prevents the
fcc following through on this misguided regulatory proposal. with that i yield back the balance of my time. >> the question before the committee today is are we soon going to be calling him mr. wheeler dealer. i put my statement in the record and yield back the time to the chairman. >> thank you, chairman. turn to the gentleman from california mr. waxman for opening comments. >> thank you, mr. chairman. i want to welcome back chairman wheeler. federal communications commission had an historic week last week. you're tackling some of the most complex and pressing issues in the communications sector today. in 2012, congress gave the fcc a big job to create the world's first incentive auction to ensure that beach front low band spectrum is put to its highest economic value.
you established the ground rules for this crucial auction last week. you had a hard job because you needed to balance four potential, potentially conflicting objectives. one maximizing the amount of spectrum made available, promote competition and create bans of unlicensed spectrum and raise money. it appears you hit this one out of the ballpark. want to commend you to your advance of unlicensed spectrum. a vision of new super wi-fi can now become a reality. i want to commend you for promoting competition. it will be an enormous setback for consumers.
it would turn into a duopoly dominated by verizon and at&t. this is the best and possibly last chance the fcc has to invigorate competition. i would have preferred if you reserved even more spectrum for competitive carriers, but i recognize the pressures you are under and you need to secure three votes. by the way, you may hear arguments today from republicans on this committee that you lack the authority to promote competition. these claims are nonsense and contradict the express language of the statute. last week you launched the fcc's third attempt in eight years to protect the open internet. you didn't hit this one out of the park, but you didn't need to either. you made a wise decision to solicit comment on a wide range of options. as i wrote you, the time has come to end the legal gymnastics and stop the lobbying games
being played by the big broadband providers. in 2010, verizon, at&t and comcast pled with the fcc not to use its undisputed authority under title ii of the communications act. then after fcc did what they wanted, verizon sued the agency for lacking authority when the fcc agreed with the company. if you want to proceed under section 706 as your main legal theory, that's fine. you shouldn't water down the open internet rules to fit section 706. instead get the substance right and invoke title ii as basis of independent authority. fcc lost two rulings in court over the open internet. you don't have to choose between
weak rules and weak legal case. you can issue strong rules and have a strong legal case if you use a belts and suspenders approach to the next rule making. i look forward to exploring this issue with you further in the question period. in the meantime, i yield the balance of my time to my friend and colleague. >> thank you very much for yielding me time. welcome, chairman wheeler. the fcc has a lot on its plate. commission is considering rules on the broadcast incentive option, aws 3 option, usf and eray and two very significant mergers. i'm confident the fcc will be able to demonstrate it can walk and chew gum at the same time. this subcommittee should also do its part. for one, i join a calling for the chairman to hold oversight hearings on the two proposed
mergers between comcast and time warner and on at&t and directv. both are some of the largest mergers in our nation's telecommunications history. americans including many in my district of sacramento are seeing the trends towards consolidation, content and pairing deals and how they hear phrases like paid privatization and wondering what is going on. what does all this mean for them for competition and for the economy? it has been encouraging that so many americans are speaking up in support of protecting an open internet. i was one who thought the fcc should have taken more time to deliberate in what neutrality rules the commission should propose. we are where we are. the proposal improved over the last few weeks. it is still far from perfect. i support a ban on paid privatization deals. we can't afford a two-tiered
internet system. i look forward to hearing from you today and yield back the balance of my time. >> gentle lady yields back the balance of her time. you heard from us or a few of us up here, mr. chairman. now we are delighted to have you here and look forward to your opening statement and comments. thank you again for the work you're doing. go ahead. >> thank you, mr. chairman and members of the committee. as you pointed out, it's been about six months since we last sat down. i what i wanted to do was highlight some of the things that we have done in that period and then engage in a dialogue with you with whatever topics would you like to address. as has been evidenced by a lot of these comments up here, one of the principle responsibilities of the commission is dealing with the spectrum crunch. we have taken a significant step forward in terms of getting more spectrum out to the market. we had the h-block option which raised $1.5 billion for ten
megahertz of spectrum. we have opened a new hundred megahertz swath in the five gigahertz band which is already being referred to as gigabit wi-fi because of the incredible through put it enables. we have begun a proceeding on spectrum are sharing in 3.5 gigahertz. we announced yesterday that in accord with the mandate of this committee and congress to auction off b 2 b west 3 section, we will begin the auction november 13th, and we will finish as per your mandate february 22nd, 2015. we have also, as some of the committee noted, established a new set of mobile spectrum holding rules, which have been
praised by everybody from public interest groups to small operators to large operators as was commented by mr. waxman hitting the ball out of the park. and we have begun the incentive auction process. you mandated us as you said with a nontrivial task, and we have taken the first important steps to that. on the question of universal service and what's going on there, we have fulfilled the pledge that i made to this committee last time we were together to eliminate the infamo infamous quantile analysis and seeking comments on what its replacement should be. we funded the connect america fund to provide connectivity to 5 million more americans who do not have access to broadband today.
that's about 1/3 of the total and significant bite out of that we are seeking input through put standards, as technology increases and bandwidth increases, do we need to think about higher bandwidth supported by the connect america fund? how do we best deal with the mobile component of broadband delivery in connect america? and how best to support broadband for rate of return carriers. those are proceedings under way. we made significant strides in the area of public safety. we took a good chunk out of the first net $7.5 billion with the h-band auction. expect obviously that the next auction will do more. i wouldn't be surprised if we show up at the incentive auction having met the requirement or at least taken a huge bite out of
the requirement for funding first net. we had rule making on text 911. phones aren't used just for talking any more but texting. and so if you want to text to an emergency service provider, we had a rule making on that. the major carriers stepped up and literally in the last couple of days, they all met their goals for implementation on that, which is a terrific step forward. we also initiated a further notice on location accuracy because as wireless usage increases, and particularly as it replace s wire line connections inside, and as gps usage has increased, there's been a fascinating reality that location accuracy is actually declined.
we began the 24 review on media issues with an expedited date. we closed the loophole exploited to get around the ownership rules using joint services agreement. we brought competition back to the retransmission consent negotiations. we continue to impress on the reform issues we believe to be important. the task force came back with 154 recommendations. about 3/4 of those are now well along their way to being in process. they break into two parts. there are proceedal issues and how do you make the agency more efficient. last week as many discussed, we
op opened you rule making an preserving and protecting the open internet. it's important to recognize there are no protections for open internet in place today. the january court decision affirmed the commission's authority under section 706 to deal with the open internet and identified what i call a road map for house to achieve that. and what i have proposed is a method that follows that road map. i understand there is a great debate on this issue. i heard the debate here this morning. between those who say there is no need and those who say it ought to be a regulated utility. what we have tried to do is to follow the court's direction road map, the blueprint, and come up with a proposal that
stops blocking, that prohibits anything that degrades a consumer's access including prioritization. that asks a broader question about prioritization as to whether it should be banned outright and if so, how? then engages in the discussion we heard already this morning about title ii versus 706 and collecting a broad scope of information. there is not a fast internet and slow internet. there is not special services internet and none. there is one internet. when the consumer buys access to the internet they are buying access to the full internet. that's what our rules attempt to
protect. this has become a debate among legal approaches about legal approaches. it's a healthy debate. it is a debate that furthers multiple requests. we ought to explore the powers that are granted in the '96 act, specifically section 706, keep asking how title ii fits in, but develop a regulatory policy that looks forward not backward because what we need is a regulatory plan for the 21st century. i look forward to discussing that with you, mr. chairman and members of the committee. >> mr. wheeler, chairman, thank you for being here. we appreciate your work and your willingness to come and spend some time with us. and respond to our questions. i want to pick up on middle class tax relief act which is designed to create a forum where
broadcasters could volunteer their spectrum up for auction. for mobile broadband use. never been done quite like proposed. we all knew that going in, but it seemed like a good balance. critical term in all of this was broadcasters would volunteer to put their spectrum up. they wouldn't be forced into it. that was the agreement. yet many of the actions that we've seen coming out of the commission would lead some to believe that the fcc might be bullying broadcasters into giving up spectrum without providing hard data and clear models so that the broadcasters can thoroughly and thoughtfully deliberate and choose to participate or not in this auction. for example, the joint sales agreement that are now outlawed. these agreements offer broadcasters viable business model in small markets would otherwise suffer from lack of service. you're considering increasing the attribution value of uaf
station so more broadcasters could end up with violation of the national cap under the broadcast ownership rule. fcc failed to process broadcasters' petition for allocation changes from vhf to uaf even though petition were filed prior to the middle class tax relief act. finally, seek to use a a modifies version will likely result in reduced coverage from broadcasters that choose to stay in the business making the business itself less viable. the very people you are trying to incent to put spectrum up to be available for auction, i think, are concerned about where the commission is headed in a number of areas. can you explain how these actions will encourage broadcasters to participate in this auction? >> thank you, mr. chairman. i think the goal here that we have been trying to follow is not to discourage or encourage,
but to follow through with our responsibili responsibilities. that means enforcing and updating our rules. >> do you think any of these things i just cited encourage broadcasters to participate more? if you don't have broadcasters showing up at spectrum -- >> we have an important issue, an important and historic role. this is an incentive auction. >> i'm aware of that. >> what we have tried to do in the mobile spectrum holdings rule, for instance, is to encourage broadcasters, encourage, sorry, wireless carriers to buy, which creates the incentive. the interesting thing there was a report by one of the wall street analysts last week who said we expect the greatest risk
to this auction, broadcasters not showing up, just dropped. because the fact that at&t suggested that they're ready to bid between $9 and $18 billion for 20 to 40 megahertz, this analyst said should send p positive signals to broadcasters. our role is to create this marketplace. and we are not trying to take regulatory action in unrelated areas. >> but you are taking lots of regulatory actions. it does have an effect on the marketplace. those two are fact. quadrennial review not complete, these things are out there. if we don't have these broadcasters coming to the table voluntarily there won't be spectrum available. this one i refer to as mr. dingell to see if i can get just sort of yes or nos here.
will you commit the fcc will not score television stations based on their enterprise value? >> on their enterprise value. that is not our intention, sir. >> no. that is a yes, actually, you will commit you will not score. will you commit the fcc -- is that correct? >> yes. >> you'll commit the fcc will ensure broadcasters cost to reallocate are covered by the $1.75 billion relocation fund? >> we believe that fund will be adequate. that is what congress told us to spend, period. >> completing frequency coordination between canada and mexico before the auction? >> i think the issue there is what is the term complete? on the dtv transition it never came down to signing on paper we understood where each other were. i am very confident we will be at that kind of a point. >> that is critical. will you commit to revoking only those low-powered tv and
translator licenses that are necessary to complete the auction? >> yes. >> thank you. i think i'm out of time. with that i would now yield to the gentle lady from california. >> thank you, mr. chairman. a lot of things to discuss, but i want to bore down on or bore into some of the particulars on your recent proposal relative to the internet. on net neutrality. i've argued, many advocates for net neutrality have argued that paid prioritization represents a fundamental departure from the internet as we know it. just restating what is obvious, but i think that when you have
hundreds of thousands of people communicating from across the country to you on it that it is important to raise. as a policy, not as a legal question, do you think that paid prioritization should be blocked outright? >> so i have said, congresswoman, that i don't believe there ought to be haves and have nots. >> no, just answer my question. tell me. do you think it should be blocked outright? >> we have asked that question in the rule making. and what i have said is that i believe that under section 706, anything anti-competitive or anti-consumer is competitively unreasonable and therefore, can and should be blocked. that becomes the trigger for how
you deal with paid prioritization. >> yeah. now what happens -- >> the question you per se asked, we asked how and when. >> what happens if the fcc determines if there is no outright, no way to outright, create an outride band in these paid agreements under 706? where does that believe you, where does that leave the country? >> so when the court gave us our instructions, they talked about what they call the virtuous cycle. and that is that content drives the need for conduit which creates the opportunity for content. and that this cycle is what is our responsibility to protect. and that's what 706 authorizes
us to protect. so what my proposal is, is that we take them up on that and we say if there is something that interferes with that virtuous cycle, which i believe paid prioritization does, that then we can move against it. >> all right. let's move over to title ii. title ii is described, it depends on who is describing it. it's either a scourge. it's been compared to the early railroad regulations in our country to being the flip side, you know, the savior title. i talked about in my opening statement about one of the
impromoteurs of the internet has been consistent innovation. while there are those that -- and i understand why people would move to title ii because they want the internet protected. these values are, they're worth protecting, but i also believe that there is room for, in title ii, for heavy-handed regulation. i don't think that let me put it this way. i think we need a light but strengthful legal touch in this because the values are so essential. people across the country and in the world -- i'm hearing from people in different parts of the world, are calling for these
protections. how would you envision, how would you handle constraint under title ii? in terms of being the chief regulator? have you given thought to this? >> yes, ma'am. as you know -- >> as some people say, share it with me. >> there is nothing in title ii that prohibits paid prioritization. we have all kinds. >> you worry me bringing that up first. >> i think the root question is how do you forebear from that. okay? and so it is possible to go through and say yes, we will not do this, will not do this. in the wireless context, interestingly enough, congress created that wireless as a
common carrier but said this doesn't apply, this doesn't apply and this doesn't apply. we can do that as a commission, as well. it has been proposed that that's an approach to take. there are also those who throw up their hands and in great concern over that say, well, this commission may do this, but what about the next commission? and you can't bind a future commissioned by making those kinds of determination. what we have done in this nprm is ask the specific question here is section 706, title ii, let's compare them and contrast them with each other and tell us what the pluses and minuses and the best ways to get through this are. i think that leads us to the kind of answer you're asking for today. >> gentle lady's time expired.
gentle lady from tennessee, ms. blackburn, vice chair of the full committee for her questions. >> thank you, mr. chairman. mr. wheeler, thank you for taking the time to come and be with us. you've got a feisty term going over there at the fcc. in tennessee we would say you're kicking up a little bust. it's causing concern. many of our content creators have a tremendous amount of concern about your approach. many of our health care innovators who are looking at absent telemedica concepts are also expressing concern. i think that probably your actions have inserted a good bit of uncertainty into the innovation sector that is looking how we best utilize all things internet to quality of
life and access for economic development for health care, for innovation. i've got just a couple of simple questions for you. first of all on cost benefit analysis. i thank you last night your team sent a letter over to us on that question. but what concerned me was in the letter you say that this is just a tool. cost benefit analysis is just one of those tools that would go into your decision and your nprm does not include an initial cost benefit analysis. your predecessor mr. janikowski in this committee, came before us and assured us he was going to use this. he said i brought particular focus to this process, including by directing the early involvement of our chief economists in the analytical process of rule making and by
having fcc staff consult with the staff of the office of information and regulatory affairs on best practices in conducting cost benefit analysis. i think it is an incredibly important component of this to look at what the cost of net neutrality rules would be to the consumer and also industry. i want to know from you, are you going to give as commitment right now that you will conduct a thorough and extensive cost benefit analysis of the actual cost to the consumer and to industry on these rules? >> thank you, ms. blackburn. i agree cost benefit analysis are crucial to decision making. in this rule making, we specifically ask what are the costs of one approach or another and wor the benefits, one or
another, so that we can electricity that information and have that kind of analysis. i agree with the importance of cross benefit analysis. >> let me ask you this also. the commission's funding is regulated by the fcc, but we have some that are impacted by this but are not regulated in paying those fees. in the net neutrality context, for example, companies like google and netflix want the fcc to act on their behalf and petition or visit the agency, if you will, in support of those efforts, but they free ride because they are not paying the fees bearing that part of the regulatory burden.
since they seem so ready and willing to rely on regulation to help them with their business models, how would you recommend that those entities share in the cost, pay their part of the cost funding the agency? >> with all respect, that's a decision this committee and congress can make setting the rules. >> i'm asking what your relation would be. they lobby you and are pushing the net neutrality rules. while they may like what you are saying because they want you to step in, we have a lot of people out there paying the fees that are not in favor of what you are doing and we have a lot of innovators who are not in favor of what you are doing. and your door has the name chairman on it. what is your perspective? >> so our effort in all of this
is to represent the american people, not company a or company b. we have been told by the congress from whom we can collect regulatory fees, and we do, if there is a decision that we should collect regulatory fees from somebody else, that's something we obviously will take. if there is a decision that we should expand regulatory authority over other entities, that is obviously something we should do. but that is a decision that is out of our hands. >> i yield back. >> yentl lady yields back. chair recognizes the gentle lady from california. >> thank you, mr. chairman. chairman wheeler, i would like to understand given the success of the internet in the absence of prioritization, precisely what types of pay privatization do you believe will speed the declinement and adoption of
broadband internet access services, given that paid privatization agreements would be used as a barrier of entry to start-ups and small business? what prioritization arrangements specifically will be better for the internet than the no prioritization norm we have today? >> what we are trying to do in this item is to say that anything that affects that virtuous cycle the court talked about and i talked about before core and is not lawful in would include this. we have asked, and we are soliciting comments on that. but e