During the Executive Session, Committee members will consider the following legislation and nominations*:
- S. 773, Cybersecurity Act of 2009
- S. 2881, FCC Commissioners’ Technical Resource Enhancement Act
- S. 1252, Oceans and Human Health Reauthorization Act of 2009
- S. 2870, International Fisheries Stewardship and Enforcement Act
- S. 2871, Technical Corrections to the Western and Central Pacific Fisheries Convention Implementation Act
- Nomination of Vice Admiral Robert J. Papp, Jr., to be Commandant of the U.S. Coast Guard, U.S. Department of Homeland Security (PN 1324)
- Nomination of Dr. Larry Robinson, to be the Assistant Secretary for Oceans and Atmosphere, U.S. Department of Commerce (PN 1454)
- Nomination of Dr. Earl F. Weener, to be a Member of the National Transportation Safety Board (PN 1344)
- Nomination of Dr. Michael F. Tillman, to be a Member of the U.S. Marine Mammal Commission (PN 1342)
- Nomination of Dr. Daryl J. Boness, to be Chairman and Reappointed to the U.S. Marine Mammal Commission ( PN 1343 and PN 1431)
- Nomination of Mr. Jeffrey R. Moreland, to be a Director of the Amtrak Board of Directors (PN 1345)
- Nominations for Promotion in the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration Commissioned Corps (PN 1457and PN 1458)
- Nominations for Promotion in the U.S. Coast Guard (PN 1444, PN 1445, PN 1446, PN 1489 and PN 1556)
*List of items under consideration subject to changes prior to scheduled executive session.
Individuals with disabilities who require an auxiliary aid or service, including closed captioning service for webcast hearings, should contact Collenne Wider at 202-224-5511 at least three business days in advance of the hearing date.
Chairman John D. (Jay) Rockefeller IVU.S. Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation
WASHINGTON, D.C.—We need a new concept of security in the 21st century. We are in uncharted territory in the Information Age.
Our country is well-suited to meet this challenge – America is a country of pioneers and innovators.
Securing cyberspace is a new challenge. It is different from virtually every other security threat that we have faced in our history, and therefore we need a very different solution.
We have to pull together, like the pioneers did, and navigate this uncharted territory – and we have to do it together. We will have to do this with unprecedented proactive teamwork and collaboration between the government and the private sector.
The approach we are proposing is not a 20th century framework of "government regulation" – it is a new paradigm for the future.
For centuries, security has meant governments protecting their citizens within national borders.
This basic concept of government-provided security has remained in effect throughout American history, through all of our wars, hot and cold. Even now, 10 years into a new century with new and very different threats, we are still relying on the old approach to security: that the government alone is responsible to protect us from all threats.
The problem is that this model simply doesn't work in cyberspace. Nearly 90 percent of critical infrastructure is owned and operated by the private sector.
The government can't protect our citizens, or our critical infrastructure, on its own.
And private companies cannot protect themselves on their own.
Our future is literally being stolen from us with the theft of intellectual property and proprietary information from U.S. companies and innovators.
The status quo is not sustainable. We need a new model for the 21st century.
The Rockefeller-Snowe bill provides that new model – giving the government, private companies and private citizens the collaborative responsibility and authority to defend our country in a world where borders do not exist.
This collaboration and engagement between government and private sector on cybersecurity needs to be proactive and constant. It cannot be reactive and disjointed.
That goes for promoting innovation and best practices, professional development and education, emergency preparedness and response, public awareness, and virtually every other aspect of cybersecurity.
It is no longer government alone protecting the country; it's all of us together.
Our approach is very different from traditional regulation because it gives the private sector unprecedented influence – and responsibility – in determining how our country defends itself.
It is better to act now than to wait to act after a cyber-emergency. We need the private sector to meet this challenge with bold and visionary leadership.
We know that concerns remain about some specific aspects of this bill, and Senator Snowe and I will continue to work with stakeholders and experts as we move forward.
We must emphasize that our core principle is not going to change: we need a new framework where private sector and government are on the same team, tactically and strategically.
They cannot just act in response to a government grant or contract, subpoena or regulation – but instead, they must act as an integral day-to-day and year-to-year part of 21st century business and national security plans and operations.
This bill will help to make that happen.
Senator Kay Bailey HutchisonU.S. Senate Commerce, Science, and Transportation Committee
STATEMENT OF HON. KAY BAILEY HUTCHISON,
COMMITTEE ON COMMERCE, SCIENCE, AND TRANSPORTATION
EXECUTIVE SESSION #14
MARCH 24, 2010
Thank you, Mr. Chairman. Today we are considering several important pieces of legislation and nominations, including legislation to protect the United States from the growing threats against our nation from cyber attacks.
Cybersecurity Act of 2009
Mr. Chairman, I would like to commend you and Senator Snowe for making the issue of cyber security a major priority. I share the goal of strengthening the United States’ ability to defend against cyber attacks launched by foreign powers, terrorist groups, and criminals.
I appreciate that your staffs have worked closely with my staff in the last 11 months to modify the legislation, and that you have agreed to accept several of my amendments as part of the managers’ package. The way we have worked together on the legislation is one of things that distinguishes this Committee from many others. I thank you for working together to improve this bill.
I would like to note a few items in the cybersecurity bill that I think are particularly good. The bill places a major focus on cyber research and development activity that will drive technology to evolve with the threats. Congress can play a role in making sure that this research occurs, and I am pleased to see such an emphasis on it in the bill.
I also believe the bill takes an appropriate longer range view and recognizes that, as the threat evolves, we need to have a steady supply of professionals coming through the college and university system with the education and skills necessary to work in the cybersecurity field. I think there is much to like about the scholarship for service program.
I hope we can revisit the decision to require private entities to develop and adopt auditable workforce training and certification standards. I think we need to carefully consider the connection between mandates on training for a small part of the workforce and potential gains to security. That linkage has not been firmly established in my mind and I worry about the costs to small and midsized businesses of these new obligations.
Nevertheless, I recognize the tremendous work that has gone in to improving the bill, and that it is important to move forward on this matter, and I will support moving the bill out of Committee.
As we move forward, I hope we will continue to incorporate the views of affected stakeholders and other Committees of jurisdiction—including the views of our colleagues on the Homeland Security and Intelligence Committees—before the bill is considered by the full Senate.
Again, Mr. Chairman, thank you for your willingness to work together on this important legislation.
I also am pleased we are moving forward this afternoon to report out six nominees so that their nominations can proceed to the full Senate for confirmation.
These are all exceptional individuals, and we need to place them in their positions as soon as possible so they can begin to tackle the challenges facing their respective agencies.
Mr. Chairman, thank you again for holding this Executive Session and I look forward to reporting out the bills and nominations before us today.