The Senate was not in session last week. In addition to roll call votes last week, the House passed the following bills by voice vote: the National Institute of Standards and Technology Small Business Cybersecurity Act (H.R. 2105), to require the director of the National Institute of Standards and Technology to disseminate guidance to help reduce small business cybersecurity risks; the National Clinical Care Commission Act (S. 920), to establish a National Clinical Care Commission; the Bonuses for Cost-Cutters Act (H.R. 378), to enhance the authority under which federal agencies may pay cash awards to employees for making cost-saving disclosures; and the Thrift Savings Plan Modernization Act (H.R. 3031), to provide flexibility in making withdrawals from a Thrift Savings Plan account.


GOVERNMENT USE OF TECHNOLOGY: The House passed the FITARA Enhancement Act (H.R. 3243), sponsored by Rep. Gerald E. Connolly, D-Va. The bill would extend various requirements for federal government agencies to evaluate their information technology assets and seek to use those assets more effectively. Connolly said the requirements seek to ensure the federal government “is making smart and effective investments to modernize” information technology. The vote Wednesday was unanimous with 418 yeas.

YEAS: Chellie Pingree, D-1st District, Bruce Poliquin, R-2nd District

DISASTER RELIEF SPENDING: The House concurred in the Senate amendment to the Additional Supplemental Appropriations for Disaster Relief Requirements Act (H.R. 2266). The amendment would provide $36.5 billion of emergency funding for recovery measures taken in response to the recent hurricanes and wildfires on the Gulf Coast, Puerto Rico and Virgin Islands, and California and other Western states. A supporter, Rep. Rodney Frelinghuysen, R-N.J., said the spending will cover immediate needs for the impacted areas and help them with longer-term efforts to prevent and limit future damage. The vote Thursday was 353 yeas to 69 nays.

YEAS: Pingree, Poliquin

GOVERNMENT WHISTLEBLOWERS: The House passed the Dr. Chris Kirkpatrick Whistleblower Protection Act (S. 585), sponsored by Sen. Ron Johnson, R-Wis. The bill would authorize disciplinary action against supervisors in the federal government for retaliating against whistleblowers and introduce medical records privacy provisions for federal employees. A supporter, Rep. Doug Collins, R-Ga., called the provisions “much-needed changes to ensure that those who come forward with information necessary to maintain and increase accountability within our government do not suffer backlash” from their managers. The vote Thursday was unanimous with 420 yeas.

YEAS: Pingree, Poliquin