LARSON: 9/11 COMMISSION BILL WILL MAKE AMERICA SAFER FROM TERRORIST ATTACKS
WASHINGTON - U.S. Congressman John B. Larson (CT-1), Vice Chair of the House Democratic Caucus, today released the following statement on House passage of the conference report on the Implementing the 9/11 Commission Recommendations Act (H.R. 1):
"As a member of the conference committee which forged this bipartisan agreement, I'm proud to see the House pass this legislation. The first priority for Democrats when we took control of Congress was to pass the recommendations of the 9/11 Commission. Despite opposition from the President to common sense provisions like scanning 100 percent of all cargo within five years and interoperability grants for first responders, we have delivered on that promise. Under the leadership of Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Homeland Security Committee Chairman Bennie Thompson we have bridged many of the differences between Democrats and Republicans in Congress. Finally, six years after 9/11 and 3 years after the 9/11 Commission recommendations, we are sending to the President a comprehensive strategy for protecting our homeland. I strongly urge the President to sign this bill into law to make America safer from terrorist attacks."
Key provisions of the conference report include:
* Improving the formulas for allocating homeland security grants to states.
* Establishing a stand-alone interoperability grant program to improve the ability of local police, fire, and emergency medical personnel to communicate between one another.
* Ensuring greater protection for the privacy and civil liberties of Americans.
* Requiring 100% screening for cargo on passenger aircraft within 3 years and maritime cargo within 5 years.
* Strengthening nonproliferation programs for weapons of mass destruction and nuclear threats.