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Thune and Nelson Applaud Senate Passage of the National Quantum Initiative Act

WASHINGTON – U.S. Sens. John Thune (R-S.D.) and Bill Nelson (D-Fla.), who serve as the chairman and ranking member of the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation, applauded Senate passage of H.R. 6227, the National Quantum Initiative Act, by unanimous consent last night with a Thune-Nelson substitute amendment. The legislation, which is the House companion of S. 3143, introduced by Thune and Nelson and approved by the Commerce Committee earlier this year, will develop and accelerate quantum science in the United States and help secure leadership in the field as other nations are developing their own quantum programs. The race to develop applications of quantum technologies has implications for both national security and economic competitiveness.

“Establishing a national quantum program is essential to maintaining our position as global leaders in science and technology,” said Thune. “I appreciate Chairman Lamar Smith and Ranking Member Eddie Bernice Johnson for working with me, Sen. Nelson, Sen. Murkowski, and Sen. Cantwell to finalize text of a bill with support in both chambers that should make it to the President’s desk before year’s end.” 

"Establishing a national quantum science initiative will ensure the U.S. remains at the forefront of scientific research and technology development," said Nelson.  "I was pleased to join with colleagues from across the aisle to advance this important legislation.”

Highlights of the National Quantum Initiative Act of 2018:

  • Accelerate Research – Establishes the National Quantum Initiative Program to speed quantum research and development and technology applications over the next ten years. 
  • Establish Interagency Coordination – Authorizes a National Quantum Coordination Office and an interagency Subcommittee on Quantum Information Science at the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy to oversee interagency coordination, provide strategic planning support, serve as a central point of contact for stakeholders, conduct outreach, and promote commercialization of federal research by the private sector.  
  • Support Standards Activities – Supports quantum information science research, measurement, and standards development, including a 5-year allocation of up to $80 million per year.
  • Establish Research and Education Centers – Sets up National Science Foundation-sponsored multidisciplinary quantum research and education centers including a 5-year allocation of up to $10 million per center per year.
  • Encourage Private Sector Involvement – Encourages U.S. high-tech companies and startups to contribute knowledge and resources to a national effort. 
  • Establish National Research Centers – Establishes Department of Energy national research centers, including a 5-year allocation of up to $25 million per center per year. 

Quantum science exploits certain principles of quantum physics, such as the ability of subatomic particles to exist in multiple states simultaneously, for valuable, real-world applications. Scientists believe quantum phenomena will enable future quantum computers to perform complex calculations at speeds that are potentially millions of times faster than today’s most advanced supercomputers.  Applications of this technology will also have a profound impact on communication security, navigation, imaging, and many other technologies that are not otherwise possible with conventional systems.

House Science Committee Chairman Lamar Smith (R-Tex.) and Ranking Member Eddie Bernice Johnson (D-Tex.) are the lead cosponsors of H.R. 6227. Senate Energy Committee Chairman Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska) and Ranking Member Maria Cantwell (D-Wash.) authored provisions establishing new requirements within the Department of Energy included in the Senate-passed bill. Sens. Steve Daines (R-Mont.), Cory Gardner (R-Colo.), Kamala Harris (D-Calif.), and Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) are cosponsors of the Senate version of the legislation introduced by Thune and Nelson. 

Click here for the full text of H.R. 6227, the National Quantum Initiative Act of 2018, as amended by the Thune-Nelson substitute.

Thune Remarks on Sen. Nelson’s Time in the U.S. Senate

“Bill’s work in the Senate and the Commerce Committee has left a legacy.”...

Thune Applauds FCC Action on Rural Broadband Deployment

WASHINGTON – U.S. Sen. John Thune (R-S.D.), chairman of the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation, issued the following statement on the Federal Communications Commission’s (FCC)adoption of an order addressing funding for broadband deployment in rural areas. Through oversight of the FCC the Committee has remained committed to closing the digital divide and ensuring America’s rural communities have advanced telecommunications capability. With its action today, the FCC has fulfilled its promise to this committee and to America’s rural communities to do its part to overcome the difficulty of deploying broadband to rural areas. 

“Broadband is vital to America’s rural communities,” said Thune. “Today the FCC, under the leadership of Chairman Pai, has taken an extremely important step to enable the continued deployment of broadband socritical to communities in my home state and rural communities across the country. By ensuring predictable and sufficient support, the commission has fulfilled an important obligation to ensure universal service and meet its obligations under the law.”   

Over the past several years the Committee has conducted hearings with testimony from rural broadband providers, farmers, tribal representatives, and others on the critical role broadband plays in the lives and economies of rural America, and the challenges involved in deploying broadband in rural areas. 

Thune and Markey Applaud FCC Reassigned Number Database

WASHINGTON – U.S. Sens. John Thune (R-S.D.), chairman of the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation, and Edward J. Markey (D-Mass.), author of the Telephone Consumer Protection Act of 1991, issued the following joint statement on the Federal Communications Commission’s(FCC) report and order creating a reassigned numbers database to help consumers avoid unwanted robocalls and robotexts.

We applaud the Commission for their continued efforts to protect the American public and promote public interest with a reassigned numbers database,” said Thune and Markey. “Once implemented, this database will help legitimate callers avoid making unwanted calls and texts to Americans who have acquired the phone number of a previous user who had signed up for messages.”

In July, Sens. Thune and Markey sent a letter to Chairman Ajit Pai outlining an opportunity for the FCC to take action and better protect consumers from unwanted robocalls and robotexts. Last month, Sens. Thune and Markey introduced S. 3655, the Telephone Robocall Abuse Criminal Enforcement and Deterrence (TRACED) Act, which would give regulators more time to pursue enforcement actions against scammers, increase civil forfeiture penalties for those caught, promote call authentication and blocking adoption, and bring relevant federal agencies and state attorneys general together to address impediments to criminal prosecution of robocallers who intentionally ignore laws.

New York Regulator Approves Internal Use of “Permissioned” Blockchain by Commercial Bank—Other Institutions Should Follow

WLF Legal Pulse - Wed, 12/12/2018 - 10:24am
Guest Commentary By Maxwell T.S. Thompson, an Associate with Murphy & McGonigle, P.C. in the firm’s New York, NY office. Prior to joining the firm, Mr. Thompson was Assistant General Counsel and Assistant Corporate Secretary with Bank Leumi USA and served in the General Counsel’s office of the New York State Department of Financial Services. …

Continue reading New York Regulator Approves Internal Use of “Permissioned” Blockchain by Commercial Bank—Other Institutions Should Follow

Categories: Latest News

Chairman Chabot: Our country has experienced unprecedented growth…

House Small Business Committee News - Tue, 12/11/2018 - 12:00am

WASHINGTON – Today, the National Federation of Independent Business (NFIB) released its November 2018 Small Business Optimism Index, which reports optimism remaining high in November.

Following the release of the report, Chairman Chabot (R-OH) said:

“Small business optimism has remained solid over the past month, which demonstrates the enthusiasm and strong economic growth driven by wage increases that have reached a 30-year high and the creation of thousands of new jobs. There’s no question that over the past two years our country has experienced unprecedented growth that has produced a fertile ground for small business owners and entrepreneurs. I’m pleased that the implementation of the new tax law and regulatory rollbacks have fueled our economy and paved the way for Main Street to thrive.”

For the full NFIB Small Business Optimism Index, click here.

Chairman Chabot: Our country has experienced unprecedented growth…

House Small Business Committee News - Tue, 12/11/2018 - 12:00am

WASHINGTON – Today, the National Federation of Independent Business (NFIB) released its November 2018 Small Business Optimism Index, which reports optimism remaining high in November.

Following the release of the report, Chairman Chabot (R-OH) said:

“Small business optimism has remained solid over the past month, which demonstrates the enthusiasm and strong economic growth driven by wage increases that have reached a 30-year high and the creation of thousands of new jobs. There’s no question that over the past two years our country has experienced unprecedented growth that has produced a fertile ground for small business owners and entrepreneurs. I’m pleased that the implementation of the new tax law and regulatory rollbacks have fueled our economy and paved the way for Main Street to thrive.”

For the full NFIB Small Business Optimism Index, click here.

DOJ Modifies Policy on Credit for Cooperation by Corporate Employees

WLF Legal Pulse - Thu, 12/06/2018 - 11:02am
Featured Expert Contributor, White Collar Crime & Corporate Compliance Gregory A. Brower, a Shareholder with Brownstein Hyatt Farber Schreck, LLP in Las Vegas, NV and Washington, DC, with William E. Moschella, a Shareholder in the firm’s Washington, DC office. Following an internal review of the Department of Justice’s policy concerning individual accountability in corporate cases, …

Continue reading DOJ Modifies Policy on Credit for Cooperation by Corporate Employees

Categories: Latest News

Preparing for Maritime Transportation in a Changing Arctic

WASHINGTON – U.S. Sen. Dan Sullivan (R-Alaska), chairman of the Subcommittee on Oceans, Atmosphere, Fisheries, and Coast Guard, will convene a subcommittee hearing titled “Preparing for Maritime Transportation in a Changing Arctic,” at 9:30 a.m. on Thursday, December 6, 2018. The hearing will examine emerging transportation issues in the changing Arctic region, including increases in vessel traffic and the resulting need for updates in waterway management, infrastructure investment, and domain awareness.

 
Witnesses:

  • Mr. Willie Goodwin, Chairman, Arctic Waterways Safety Committee
  • Andrew Hartsig, Director, Arctic Program, Ocean Conservancy 
  • Ms. Kathy Metcalf, President and CEO, Chamber of Shipping of America
  • Captain Ed Page, Executive Director, Marine Exchange of Alaska

*Witness list subject to change.

Hearing Details: 

Thursday, December 6, 2018
9:30 a.m.
Subcommittee on Oceans, Atmosphere, Fisheries, and Coast Guard 

This hearing will take place in Russell Senate Office Building 253. Witness testimony, opening statements, and a live video of the hearing will be available on www.commerce.senate.gov.

Commerce Committee Leaders Seek Answers on Marriott Data Breach

WASHINGTON – U.S. Sens. John Thune (R-S.D.), chairman of the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation, Roger Wicker (R-Miss.), chairman of the Subcommittee on Communications, Technology, Innovation, and the Internet, and Jerry Moran (R-Kan.), chairman of the Subcommittee on Consumer Protection, Product Safety, Insurance, and Data Security, have sent a letter to Mr. Arne M. Sorenson, the president and chief executive officer of Marriott International. following news that the company had identified a cybersecurity incident impacting an estimated 500 million consumers. 

Excerpt from the letter to Marriott International:

“Of the estimated 500 million consumers impacted by the breach, approximately 327 million of those guests reportedly had a combination of customer data, including personally identifiable information exposed, including name, mailing address, phone number, email address, passport number, Starwood Preferred Guest account information, date of birth, gender, arrival and departure information, reservation date, and communication preference.  Additionally, sensitive payment information like payment card numbers and payment card expiration dates were also apparently exposed, but Marriott stated that this specific information was encrypted using the Advanced Encryption Standard (AES-128), which requires two individual components to decrypt the information.  Nevertheless, Marriott has also clarified that the company has not yet ruled out that these decryption keys were also taken as a result of the breach.” 

In the letter, Sens. Thune, Wicker, and Moran question Mr. Sorenson on details related to when the breach began, what consumer information was compromised, and investigative efforts Marriott International has taken since detection.  

Read the full letter to Marriott International President/CEO here. The Commerce Committee exercises jurisdiction over consumer protection and cybersecurity.

Artificial Intelligence Will Benefit Us Immensely—If We Don’t Get in the Way

WLF Legal Pulse - Tue, 12/04/2018 - 11:06am
Ideas are becoming more expensive. Larger teams of scientists are taking longer and spending more to discover less. A common theory for these diminishing returns compares exploring the laws of nature to exploring land. Pioneers chart the most accessible areas. Later generations must grope their way across remote and forbidding terrain to find anything new; …

Continue reading Artificial Intelligence Will Benefit Us Immensely—If We Don’t Get in the Way

Categories: Latest News

Chairman Chabot Highlights 15-Year High for Small Business Optimism

House Small Business Committee News - Tue, 12/04/2018 - 12:00am

WASHINGTON – Today, the latest quarterly Wells Fargo/Gallup Small Business Index was released, indicating a significant jump of optimism among small business owners and the highest score in the survey’s 15-year history.

Upon the release of this report, Chairman Chabot (R-OH) said:

“Small business owners are experiencing the positive effects of our booming economy, with indicators for a hopeful future ahead. With small business optimism reaching historic highs, our policies are not only helping small business owners, they are bringing more people into the job market. Easier access to credit means more growth and more jobs. I look forward to this momentum continuing as small business owners and entrepreneurs gear up for a new year.”

The Wells Fargo/Gallup Small Business Index showed:

  • 80 percent of respondents regarded their financial situation as very good or somewhat good.
  • 55 percent of respondents recorded increases in revenue for their small businesses.
  • 27 percent of small business owners say over the past 12 months, the number of jobs in their company has increased.
  • 47 percent of companies found it somewhat or very easy to obtain credit.
For the full Wells Fargo/Gallup Small Business Index, click here.

Chairman Chabot Highlights 15-Year High for Small Business Optimism

House Small Business Committee News - Tue, 12/04/2018 - 12:00am

WASHINGTON – Today, the latest quarterly Wells Fargo/Gallup Small Business Index was released, indicating a significant jump of optimism among small business owners and the highest score in the survey’s 15-year history.

Upon the release of this report, Chairman Chabot (R-OH) said:

“Small business owners are experiencing the positive effects of our booming economy, with indicators for a hopeful future ahead. With small business optimism reaching historic highs, our policies are not only helping small business owners, they are bringing more people into the job market. Easier access to credit means more growth and more jobs. I look forward to this momentum continuing as small business owners and entrepreneurs gear up for a new year.”

The Wells Fargo/Gallup Small Business Index showed:

  • 80 percent of respondents regarded their financial situation as very good or somewhat good.
  • 55 percent of respondents recorded increases in revenue for their small businesses.
  • 27 percent of small business owners say over the past 12 months, the number of jobs in their company has increased.
  • 47 percent of companies found it somewhat or very easy to obtain credit.
For the full Wells Fargo/Gallup Small Business Index, click here.

Kimberly-Clark Seeks Supreme Court Review in “Flushable” Wipes Case

WLF Legal Pulse - Mon, 12/03/2018 - 2:42pm
Guest Commentary By Lucía Roibal, an Associate with Morrison & Foerster LLP in the firm’s San Francisco, CA office. This commentary is reposted with permission, originally appearing on November 30, 2018 in the firm’s Class Dismissed  blog. On September 6, 2018, Kimberly-Clark and affiliates filed a petition for writ of certiorari in Kimberly-Clark, et al. v. …

Continue reading Kimberly-Clark Seeks Supreme Court Review in “Flushable” Wipes Case

Categories: Latest News

Update: Justices Seek Federal Government’s Views on Pending Clean Water Act Suit Petitions

WLF Legal Pulse - Mon, 12/03/2018 - 2:17pm
In a November 20 Featured Expert Contributor post, Cert Petitions May Mean Supreme Court Will Clarify Clean Water Act Jurisdiction, Sidley Austin LLP partner Sam Boxerman and his colleague Ben Tannen discussed two related certiorari petitions pending before the U.S. Supreme Court. Both petitions ask the Court to review circuit court decisions that held discharges through …

Continue reading Update: Justices Seek Federal Government’s Views on Pending Clean Water Act Suit Petitions

Categories: Latest News

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