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Rockefeller Details Committee Priorities for 113th Congress

Press Release

Location: Washington, DC

Chairman John D. (Jay) Rockefeller IV today announced his priorities and goals for the U.S. Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation for the start of the 113th Congress.

"I look forward to continuing working with my colleagues on the Commerce Committee to solve the tough problems that affect people's lives. Public service demands -- and deserves -- nothing less than everything you have. So with an agenda that seeks to prepare Americans for a digital economy and better protect consumers, we have our work cut out for us in the 113th Congress. I am confident that this Committee, with its long history of bipartisan cooperation, can take on these priorities to make a meaningful difference in the lives of all Americans."

Key Priorities for the Senate Commerce Committee for the start of the 113th Congress Include:


Increasing the competitiveness of America's manufacturing sector

Improving our infrastructure and the public's safety through key investments in rail, highways, and pipelines

Preparing Americans for a digital economy by closing the digital divide and expanding access to broadband -- wired and wireless

Maximizing our investments in scientific research and strengthening science, technology, engineering, and mathematics education through reauthorization of the America COMPETES Act

Making sure that, as warmer temperatures and new technologies generate increased economic activity in the Arctic, we do not ignore the need for responsible environmental stewardship

Reviewing whether existing cruise line industry regulations sufficiently protect passengers and the environment

Promoting the development of the economic potential of natural gas (energy) in a safe and environmentally responsible way


Oversight of critical government programs, including:

Federal Aviation Administration, including the agency's efforts to modernize the air transportation system

FirstNet implementation, which will provide our nation's first responders with an interoperable broadband communications network

Working with the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration and Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration on MAP-21 directives to increase motor vehicle and truck safety

Monitoring the Federal budget process to prioritize safety and minimize impacts to vital programs that affect the flow of commerce and transportation

Increasing access to telecommunications and broadband infrastructure for schools and communities through the E-Rate program

Strengthening forensic science through research and advancing the development of science-based standards for adoption by forensic labs

Recruiting and training cybersecurity personnel to ensure the federal government has the necessary workforce to secure our nation from cyber threats

Protecting lives, communities, and property by improving our nation's ability to predict severe weather conditions with advancements in technology and services


Safeguarding consumer information and strengthening privacy protections on the Internet, including an investigation into the business practices of companies that collect and sell consumer data

Studying the impact of violent and indecent media content on children

Promoting competition and increasing consumer choice in video content

Holding the health insurance industry accountable for its business and marketing practices

Cracking down on consumer fraud, including telephone billing scams, and monitoring the impact technological developments have on consumers to ensure bad actors cannot take advantage of consumer confusion

Continuing oversight of key federal agencies with consumer protection mandates, such as the Federal Trade Commission, the Consumer Product Safety Commission, the Surface Transportation Board, and the Federal Communications Commission

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