Congressman Lee Terry (R-NE) today introduced the Nuclear Emergency Re-Establishment of Obligations (NERO) Act (H.R. 3657), legislation that will alter the authority currently held by the Chairman of the Nuclear Regulatory Commission, as well as enforce new guidelines for the Chairman's interactions with other Nuclear Regulatory Commission Officers, and Congress.
The NERO Act requires that the Chairman, amongst other new duties, declare an emergency and notify other Commissioners and Congress of the emergency before utilizing the Chair's emergency powers. The legislation also enforces a new certification process of documents transmitted from the NRC to Congress, and brings oversight into the appointment of Commission officers, the NRC's budget review/development process, and the approval of Commissioners' travel.
"The daily activities of the NRC shouldn't be covert operations. The NERO Act pulls open the curtain that has hidden numerous questionable NRC actions in the past.
"Trust at the Commission has been broken, and it is time to restore it. This legislation is a good first step in the process to help the Nuclear Regulatory Commission function at the level expected of it," said Terry.