H.R. 4407, Counterterrorism Advisory Board Act of 2016, as amended

H.R. 4407

Counterterrorism Advisory Board Act of 2016, as amended

Sponsor
Rep. John Katko

Date
May 16, 2016 (114th Congress, 2nd Session)

Staff Contact
Communications

Floor Situation

On Monday, May 16, 2016, the House will consider H.R. 4407, the Counterterrorism Advisory Board Act of 2016, as amended, under suspension of the rules. The bill was introduced on February 1, 2016, by Rep. John Katko (R-NY) and was referred to the Committee on Homeland Security, which order the bill reported, by voice vote, on February 2, 2016.

Bill Summary

H.R. 4407 establishes a counterterrorism advisory board within the Department of Homeland Security to coordinate and integrate departmental intelligence, activities, and policy related to counterterrorism. Members of the Board will include senior represenatives from the operational components of the Department[1], support agencies[2], and other offices and programs determined appropriate by the Secretary. The Chair of the Board will serve at the Counterterrorism Coordinator, and submit a report to the homeland security committees of the House and the Senate on the status and activities of the board.

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[1] U.S. Customs and Border Protection; U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services; U.S. Coast Guard; Federal Emergency Management Agency; U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement; U.S. Secret Service; and the Transportation Security Administration.
[2] The National Protection and Programs Directorate; the Office of Operations Coordination; the Office of the General Counsel; the Office of Intelligence and Analysis; the Office of Policy; and the Science and Technology Directorate.

Background

In March 2015, the Committee on Homeland Security launched a bipartisan Task Force on Combatting Terrorist and Foreign Fighter Travel. Eight Members of Congress were charged with examining the threat to the United States from foreign fighters. The Task Force assessed domestic and overseas efforts to obstruct terrorist travel and identified potential security gaps.  They issued a final report on September 29, 2015.[1]

One of the Task Force’s 32 individual conclusions, it was recommended that Congress authorize the DHS Counterterrorism Advisory Board (CTAB). CTAB is an internal body established in 2010 at the direction of the Secretary of Homeland Security, and is charged with advising the Secretary on counterterrorism issues. According to the Committee, CTAB has improved the Department’s ability to respond to terrorism threats and harmonize counterterrorism programs and activities across multiple components, and should be established an a permanent structure within the Department.[2]

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[1] See Final Report on the Task Force on Combating Terrorist and Foreign Fighter Travel at 2.
[2] See House Report 114-481 at 2.

Cost

The Congressional Budget Office (CBO) estimates enacting H.R 4407 would have no significant effect on DHS spending, since the Department is currently carrying out similar activities.

Additional Information

For questions or further information please contact Jake Vreeburg with the House Republican Policy Committee by email or at 5-0190.