CONGRESSWOMAN ELISE STEFANIK
On Tuesday, June 21, 2016, the House will consider H.R. 5388, the Leveraging Emerging Technologies Act of 2016, under suspension of the rules. The bill was introduced on June 7, 2016, by Rep. John Ratcliffe (R-TX) and was referred to the Committee on Homeland Security which ordered the bill reported, by voice vote, on June 8, 2016.
H.R. 5389 directs the Secretary of Homeland Security to engage with innovative and emerging technology developers and firms to address homeland security needs. In addition, the legislation authorizes the Secretary to establish personnel and office space in specific geographic areas within the United States if the Secretary identifies high concentrations of innovative and emerging technology developers and firms. Finally, H.R. 5389 directs the Secretary to develop and implement a strategic plan for a Department-wide strategy to proactively engage with innovative and emerging technology developers and firms. The plan shall include: a focus on sustainable methods and building relationships with technology developers; efforts to include proven technologies in future acquisition contacts; and criteria the Secretary plans to use to determine a technology is innovative or proven.
According to the Committee, the nation is under constant cyber-attack from nation-states, criminal groups, and terrorist organizations and the attacks and the tools they use are becoming more sophisticated. In order to keep pace, DHS recently established an office in Silicon Valley to encourage regular engagement and communication with the innovative technology developers in the area. Although a vital technology hub, Silicon Valley is not the only hub in the United States. The Department’s ability to engage across the country and establish office space in a similar manner will help it regularly communicate with innovative and emerging technology developers. In this vein, requiring the Department to consider strategically how it will engage these technology developers will strengthen the Department’s ability to access innovative and emerging technologies in order to combat evolving threats.
A Congressional Budget Office (CBO) estimate is currently unavailable.
For questions or further information please contact Jake Vreeburg with the House Republican Policy Committee by email or at 5-0190.