Washington Watch: Legislative Update

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Washington Watch: Legislative Update

2017-02-03T21:40:09+00:00February 6th, 2017|From the Grand Lodge, Legislation|Comments Off on Washington Watch: Legislative Update

Washington Watch: Legislative Update
For the Week of 30 January 2017

I.      Legislative News and Activity
II.    This Week in Congress
III.   Update on Top Legislative Priorities
IV.  FOP NEWS: FOP Applauds Committee Vote on Sessions
V.  Follow the FOP National Legislative Office on Twitter!

I.      LEGISLATIVE NEWS AND ACTIVITY
Senior Legislative Liaison Tim Richardson and Legislative Liaison Mike Martin met with staff in the office of Representative H.W. “Trey” Gowdy III (R-SC), Chairman of the Subcommittee on Crime, Terrorism, Homeland Security and Investigations, to talk about the FOP’s hate crimes proposal and other issues pending before the Subcommittee.

Senior Legislative Liaison Richardson and Legislative Liaison Martin met with the majority staff of the House Committee on Ways and Means to discuss the “Social Security Fairness Act” and other issues pending before the Committee.

Legislative Liaison Martin met with staff in the offices of Senators Robert P. Casey, Jr. (D-PA), Joseph S. Donnelly, Sr. (D-IN) and Patrick J. Toomey (R-PA) to discuss the re-introduction of the Children of Fallen Heroes Scholarship Act.

Legislative Liaison Martin met with staff in the offices of Representatives Brendan F. Boyle (D-PA) and Brian K. Fitzpatrick (R-PA) to discuss the re-introduction of the Children of Fallen Heroes Scholarship Act.

II.     THIS WEEK IN CONGRESS
The House and Senate were both in session this week.

Action in the House
The House considered and passed H.R. 58, the “First Responder Identification of Emergency Needs in Disaster Situations (FRIENDS) Act,” under a suspension of the rules on a voice vote. The bill, which would direct the Government Accountability Office (GAO) to report on State and local programs and policies related to the preparedness and protection of first responders, now goes to the Senate for further action.

The House considered and passed H.J. Res. 40 on a 235-180 rule. The resolution disapproves of the rule submitted by the Social Security Administration relating to implementation of the NICS Improvement Amendments Act of 2007.

Action in the Senate
The Senate considered and confirmed the nominations of:

  • Elaine L. Chao to be the next Secretary of the U.S. Department of Transportation on a 93-6 vote and
  • Rex W. Tillerson to be the next Secretary of the U.S. Department of State on a 56-43 vote.

Actions in Senate Committee
The Committee on the Judiciary considered and favorably reported the nomination of Senbator Jeffersob B. Sessions III (R-AL) to be the next Attorney General of the United States on a 11-9 vote. The nomination now proceeds to the Senate floor.  (See Item IV. for additional information.

III.       UPDATE ON TOP LEGISLATIVE PRIORITIES
For the complete list of cosponsors for all of our top legislative priorities, or to find out if your Representative and Senators are cosponsors of specific bills, check out https://www.congress.gov/

A.  Support the “Social Security Fairness Act”
This legislation has not yet been reintroduced..

B.  Support the “Law Enforcement Officers’ Equity Act”
This legislation has not yet been reintroduced.

IV.      FOP NEWS: FOP Applauds Committee Vote on Sessions
Chuck Canterbury, National President of the Fraternal Order of Police, applauded today’s news that Senator Jefferson B. Sessions III (R-AL) was favorably reported by the Committee on the Judiciary on a straight party line vote of 11-9.

“Jeff Sessions has been a partner and a champion for law enforcement officers for nearly all his adult life,” Canterbury said. “As a longtime prosecutor, he is and always will be a member of the law enforcement family and we look forward to his leadership at the U.S. Department of Justice.”

Senator Sessions served as a U.S. Attorney in Alabama and was the Attorney General of that State prior to his election to the Senate. He served as a member of the Committee on the Judiciary during his tenure in the Senate and has been a real advocate for the men and women in law enforcement.

“Jeff Sessions is a man who can and has reached across the aisle to get things done for the rank-and-file officer as well as a man who will support those same officers, even when it is unpopular to do so,” Canterbury said. “The men and women serving in law enforcement will be proud to have Senator Sessions as our top cop.”

Senator Sessions’ nomination must be confirmed by the U.S. Senate, which is expected to be held next week.

V.      DAY ON THE HILL 2017!
This year’s Day on the Hill is of particular importance as the 115th Congress is sworn in and a new Administration takes over the operation of the Federal government. It is imperative that we make our voices heard and work hard to ensure that our issues are considered in the Congress and throughout the Executive branch. Please make an effort to attend if you can–we need you!!!

The FOP Day on the Hill 2017 will begin on Monday, 13 February. The National Legislative Office and the National Legislative Committee will host a short briefing on our legislative agenda. The briefing will take place at 3pm on that Monday afternoon at D.C. Lodge #1 and last approximately one hour. We look forward to seeing you there.

Tuesday and Wednesday, 14-15 February, will be devoted to your meetings with Members from your home States and districts. These appointments should be made in advance!!! Event participants should make every effort to have their Representative or Senator attend the meeting along with the appropriate staff person.

VI.     Follow the FOP National Legislative Office on Twitter!
Sign up today for the latest news from Capitol Hill:  https://twitter.com/FOPLegislative

 

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Questions or Comments? E-mail us at or call (202) 547 – 8189.
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John Blackmon

A retired law enforcement officer who now serves as the President of the Fraternal Order of Police Tri-County Lodge #3.
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