California Capitol Hill Bulletin

Volume 16, Bulletin 11 -- April 3, 2009   [view online or pdf or go to previous]


To expand communications between Washington and California, the California Institute provides periodic bulletins regarding current activity on Capitol Hill that affects our state.  Bulletins are published weekly during sessions of Congress, and occasionally during other periods.  To subscribe to the Bulletin or other California Institute announcements, visit this link.


CONTENTS OF THIS ISSUE:

Resources: House Natural Resources Evaluates California Water Shortage

Budget: House and Senate Approve FY 2010 Budget Resolutions

Homeland Security: House Homeland Security Appraises Fusion Centers

Energy: Energy and Natural Resources Marks Up Energy Legislation

Resources: Subcommittee Discusses Water Use Efficiency and the EPA

Employment: Education and Labor Subcommittee Discusses Green Jobs and Economic Recovery

Nutrition: Agriculture, Nutrition and Forestry Committee Discusses Federal School Meal Programs

Energy: Clean Energy Act Draft Released

Homeland Security: Appropriations Panel Examines Safety of Containerized Cargo

Immigration: House Judiciary Examines 287(g) Enforcement



Resources: House Natural Resources Evaluates California Water Shortage

    The House Natural Resources Committee held a hearing on Tuesday, March 31, 2009 on “The California Drought: Actions By Federal And State Agencies to Address Impacts On Lands, Fisheries, And Water Users.”

    Chairing the committee hearing was Rep. Grace Napolitano, Chair of the Natural Resources Subcommittee on Water and Power. Witnesses included Reps. Mike Thompson (St. Helena); Dennis A. Cardoza (Atwater); Devin Nunes (Tulare); George Radanovich (Mariposa); Wally Herger (Marysville); and Ken Calvert (Corona), all of whom testified during the Committee’s first panel.

    The second panel consisted of: Mary M. Glackin; Deputy Undersecretary for Oceans and Atmosphere; National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, U.S. Department of Commerce; J. William (Bill) McDonald, Acting Commissioner, Bureau of Reclamation, U.S. Department of the Interior; Candy Thompson, Acting Deputy Administrator for Farm Programs, Farm Service Agency, U.S. Department of Agriculture; The Honorable Mike Chrisman, Secretary, Natural Resources, State of California, accompanied by: Lester Snow, Director, California Department of Water Resources; and The Honorable Allen Ishida, Tulare County Supervisor, California Board of Supervisors.

    Other Californians at the hearing included Committee members Grace Napolitano (Norwalk); George Miller (Martinez); and Jim Costa (Fresno).

    During the hearing, the following issues were discussed:

    - whether Endangered Species Act provisions should be eased in order to allow pumping of water this spring, and the impact on farming if more water does not get pumped;

    - whether California’s water issues are being considered as part of an integrated environmental and infrastructure plan or only as a water delivery system

    - whether desalination and other alternatives are being developed sufficiently, and whether those alternatives could provide a sufficient cushion to ensure adequate water, and

    - whether construction of a peripheral canal would improve the quality of the delta

    Testimony of all witnesses is available at: http://resourcescommittee.house.gov . In addition, full video of the hearing is posted on the site, at http://resources.edgeboss.net/wmedia/resources/2009_03_31_fc.wvx .


Budget: House and Senate Approve FY 2010 Budget Framework

    Late on Thursday, April 2, 2009, the House and Senate approved their separate budget resolutions. The House vote was 233 to 196. The Senate approved their measure later in the evening on a party-line vote of 55 to 43.

    The versions differ slightly from President Obama’s proposed $3.6 trillion spending plan, as well as from each other. In general, both spending outlines would approach major initiatives on health care, education and climate change in similar manners

    The House version includes a spending plan that would eliminate $150 billion from President Obama’s proposal, and would reduce next year's deficit to $1.22 trillion compared under $1.38 trillion under the Administration’s request. The House proposal leaves out tax relief extension for business; eliminates about $7 billion of requests from government agencies, yields $600 billion less in deficit; eliminates the President's proposed permanent tax exemption for middle class families; and opts not to extend the $800 tax cut for working families that was included in the stimulus package.

    One major differences between the House version and the Senate version is the use by the House drafters of budget reconciliation -- a procedural element that would allow the Senate to pass some of Obama's major initiatives, including his health care proposal and his higher education federal aid expansion proposal, with only a majority vote in the Senate. Also different is the larger decreases in spending in the Senate version, which would pare about $15 billion from the President's requests for government agencies and programs; it also presumes greater cuts to the deficit than the House version.

    For more information and specific details about each budget resolution can be found at: http://budget.house.gov/ and http://budget.senate.gov/.

Homeland Security: House Homeland Security Appraises Fusion Centers

    On Wednesday, April 1, 2009, the House Homeland Security Subcommittee on Intelligence, Information Sharing and Terrorism Risk Assessment, chaired by Rep. Jane Harman (Venice) held a hearing entitled “The Future of Fusion Centers: Potential Promise and Dangers.”

    Fusion centers have been established in the United States to integrate information and intelligence from the Federal, State, local and tribal governments, as well as the private sector, to provide law enforcement with an accurate picture of risks to people, infrastructure and communities.

    Witnesses at the hearing included: Sheriff Leroy Baca, Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department; Mr. Robert Riegle, Director, State and Local Program Office, Office of Intelligence & Analysis, Department of Homeland Security; and Mr. Bruce Fein, Principal, The Litchfield Group.

    In her opening remarks, Chairwoman Harman expressed her support for fusion centers but stated that the effort has to be done right, so that the centers have “the mission focus, structure, and privacy and civil liberties resources they need to protect the homeland while preserving the Constitution that protects each and every one of us.”

    Sheriff Baca detailed the origin and establishment of the Los Angeles Joint Regional Intelligence Center (JRIC). He noted the Center has been recognized for its efforts in exploring prison and jail radicalization, and has also been the first to include personnel from the fire service, public health, and other public service offices to provide subject matter expertise as needed. Among other issues, Baca urged that as efforts to standardize the mission and operations of fusion centers increases it is important to get significant input from local leaders. He stated that he is “not confident that policy makers at the Federal level have a clear understanding of the information needs of local law, fire and health departments.” Also, he said, because of the differences in demographics, population size, and the like, “one size does not fit all and any attempt to constrain local input into national policy developments is a mistake.” He also called for “sustainable federal funding” for the JRIC and other fusion centers.

    Mr. Fein’s testimony paralleled an opinion-editorial piece in the April 1 edition of the Washington Times. He strongly objected to the existence of fusion centers, stating: “The Soviet Union had its KGB, East Germany had its Stasi, and the United States should profit by those examples. It should abandon fusion centers that engage 800,000 state and local law enforcement officers in the business of gathering and sharing allegedly domestic or international terrorism intelligence. The vast majority conceive this task as synonymous with monitoring and disparaging political dissent and association protected by the First Amendment.”

    As an example he noted Wall Street Journal and Los Angeles Times articles from April 2008 that reported on a Los Angeles Police Department order requiring officers to report any “suspicious behaviors” that will then be fed to the local fusion center, and that “LAPD Special Order #11, dated March 5, 2008, states that it is the policy of the LAPD to ‘gather, record, and analyze information of a criminal or non-criminal nature, that could indicate activity or intentions related to either foreign or domestic terrorism,’ and includes a list of 65 behaviors LAPD officers ‘shall’ report,” including a list of such “innocuous” activities such as taking measurements, pictures, video, or measurements.

    During questioning of Sheriff Baca and other witnesses, Chair Harman elicited that they strongly denied the allegations made by Mr. Fein, such as that law enforcement officers or public officials will “never” honor First Amendment principles; that they are rewarded financially and professionally by the volume of intelligence collected; and there are no serious quality controls.

    For the testimony of all the witnesses, go to: http://homeland.house.gov .


Energy: Energy and Natural Resources Marks Up Energy Legislation

    On March 31, 2009, the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee marked up four proposed bills. The committee discussed: S 531, S 598, S 661, and a draft of the Energy Innovation and Workforce Development title of the draft comprehensive energy legislation.

    S 531, the "Energy and Water Integration Act of 2009", would direct the Department of Energy, in consultation with other agencies, to conduct of an in-depth analysis of the impact of energy development and production on the water resources of the United States. The Act would require DOE to use life-cycle assessments of the quantity of water withdrawn and consumed in the production of transportation fuels and electricity, and to, within ninety days, develop an "Energy-Water Research and Development Roadmap," to define the future research and development, demonstration and commercialization efforts that are required to address emerging water-related challenges to future, cost-effective, reliable, and sustainable energy generation and production. The assessment would also include an evaluation and analysis of electricity generation facilities, including cooling techniques.

    S 598, the "Appliance Standards Improvement Act of 2009", would amend the Energy Policy and Conservation Act (EPCA)to improve appliance standards. Generally, S 598 would amend the EPCA to: 1) require the EPA and DOE to update their interagency agreements to improve cooperation, 2) require EPA and DOE to review Energy Star market share every 3 years or when Energy Star designated products achieve 35% market share, 3) require third-party verification of the testing of qualified products, 4) develop and publish standardized building audits methods to encourage standardization of building auditing among the federal and state agencies, counties and utilities, and private businesses who conduct such audits, 5) authorize specific DOE and EPA Energy Star Programs, 6) establish minimum energy efficiency for portable light fixtures, such as table and floor lamps- a provision that would add new consensus standards to laws that were develop through a California rule-making process, 7) require the phase out of the use of incandescent light bulbs in portable light fixtures, and 8) to require DOE to conduct one study of the degree of compliance with energy standards for appliances, including an investigation of compliance rates, one study of the cost and benefits of requiring DC electricity supply in buildings, and one study to assess electric motors and the electric motor market.

    S 661, "Restoring America's Manufacturing Leadership through Energy Efficiency Act of 2009", would: 1) provide financing mechanism for industries to retool and implement advanced technologies and reduce energy intensity and emissions, and would establish DOE grants to community lender/state partnerships to establish regional revolving loan programs for manufacturers, 2) establish partnerships between the Industrial Technologies Program (ITP) and other Federal applied technology programs to engage in early stage manufacturing technology development, 3) direct DOE to benchmark the domestic industry by assessing the cost, energy and ghg emissions savings potential of commercially available, but not widely implemented industrial technologies, 4) develop, with industry, technology road-maps to map out how to achieve decreased energy intensity and emissions,5) expand the regionally based Industrial Assessment Centers to reach more small and medium-sized manufacturers and train industrial engineers, 6) establish Industrial Innovation Grants to encourage and reward innovation in industrial processes and technologies, 7) establish a joint industry-government manufacturing partnerships to shift our industry towards utilizing advanced, sustainable manufacturing technologies and processes to compete in a low-carbon global economy, and 8) direct the National Academies of Science to evaluate the critical manufacturing capabilities and supply chain components needed to capture the development and production of advanced energy technologies in the U.S.

    The Energy Innovation and Workforce Development title is expected to be part of a larger package that will ultimately take shape as a 2009 energy bill. The committee will be marking up and discussing each title in the draft. The Energy Innovation and Workforce Development title, generally includes provisions to: 1) extend and expand research, development, demonstration and workforce training programs at the Department of Energy (DOE), 2) authorize a doubling of current research and development funding levels at the DOE over the next four years, 3) authorizes a new "Grand Challenges Research Initiative" to integrate the basic and applied energy research programs at the DOE, 4) authorizes a Domestic Vehicle Manufacturing Program, focused on electrification of vehicles, with the goal of enabling a domestic battery manufacturing industry for electric vehicles, similar to government-industry partnerships in Japan and Korea, 5) develop an array of training programs for the energy workforce of the future, particularly for the skilled technician and trade workers needed to construct and maintain energy infrastructure, and for personnel expert in the geosciences needed in several major energy- and climate-related areas (i.e., oil and gas development, geothermal energy, geological storage of carbon dioxide, water development) and to coordinate energy-related training programs across the Federal government.

    More information and each of these proposed bills can be found at: http://energy.senate.gov/public/


Resources: Subcommittee Discusses Water Use Efficiency and the EPA

    On March 31, 2009, the Water and Wildlife Subcommittee of the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee, held a hearing on the "EPA's Role in Promoting Water Use Efficiency."

    Witnesses included: Michael H. Shapiro, Acting Assistant Administrator, Office of Water U.S. Environmental Protection Agency; Martha Davis, Executive Manager for Policy Development Inland Empire Utilities Agency; Mary Ann Dickinson, Executive Director Alliance for Water Efficiency; Mark A. Shannon, James W. Bayne Professor, Director of the Center of Advanced Materials for the Purification of Water with Systems, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign; and G. Tracy Mehan III, Principal, The Cadmus Group, Inc.

    Inland Empire Utilities Agency Executive Manager Martha Davis stated that "what is needed is a balanced approach to the development of multiple sources of water supplies, with a clear priority for water efficiency, local water supply management, and an emphasis on less energy intensive uses of water that will also protect water quality and enhance wildlife habitats." Davis recommended that the EPA can play a pivotal role in helping provide water agencies with relevant information, and encouraged the committee to strengthen the connection of water, energy and greenhouse gas emissions stating that "embedded energy in water and the related potential for reduction in greenhouse gas emissions be incorporated into the proposed U.S. Environmental Protection Agency research and development program."

    More information and full witness testimony can be found at: http://epw.senate.gov .


Employment: Education and Labor Subcommittee Discusses Green Jobs and Economic Recovery

    On March 31, 2009, the Subcommittee on Workforce Protections of the House Education and Labor Committee held a hearing to examine green jobs and their role in our nation's economic recovery. The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act set aside $50 billion in grants and tax incentives to promote energy efficiency and the renewable energy sector. Congress also approved the Green Jobs Act in 2007, a program to help train American workers for jobs in the renewable energy and energy-efficiency industries.

    Witnesses included: William T. Bogart, Dean of Academic Affairs and Professor of Economics; Kathy Krepcio, Executive Director; John J. Heldrich, Center for Workforce Development, Rutgers University; Jerome Ringo, President, Apollo Alliance; Robin Roy, Vice President for Projects and Policy, Serious Materials; Jill Sherman, Gerding Edlen Development; and Clinton R. Wolfe, Executive Director, Citizens for Nuclear Technology Awareness.

    According to Jerome Ringo, "Congress can take advantage of [the opportunity to strengthen and expand America's middle class by boosting the clean energy manufacturing sector] by...1) providing direct federal funding for clean energy manufacturers to retool their facilities and retrain their workers to develop, produce, and commercialize clean energy technologies; 2) attaching standards to funding: condition federal support to manufacturers on their ability to meet labor and domestic content standards; 3) increasing funding for the Manufacturing Extension Partnership, both to expand its role in strengthening the clean energy supply chain and to establish partnerships with regional/local development and manufacturing support organizations; 4) increasing funding for the Green Jobs Act and direct funds administered under the Act toward workforce and skill standards development for the clean energy manufacturing industries; and 5) creating a "Presidential Task Force on Clean Energy Manufacturing" to bring together a range of federal agencies to make the manufacturing of clean energy systems and components a national priority."

    Witness testimony and more information can be found at: http://edworkforce.house.gov/ .


Nutrition: Agriculture, Nutrition and Forestry Committee Discusses Federal School Meal Programs

    On March 31, 2009, the Senate Agriculture, Nutrition and Forestry Committee, chaired by Sen. Tom Harkin (Iowa), held a hearing on federal school meal programs, focusing on nutrition for kids in schools.

    Witnesses included: Pat Cooper, President, Early Childhood and Family Learning Foundation; Nancy Huehnergarth, Director, New York State Healthy Eating and Physical Activity Alliance; Byron Garrett, CEO, National Parent Teacher Association; Reginald Felton, Federal Relations Director National School Boards Association; Karen Ehrens, Public Policy Chairwoman North Dakota Dietetic Association; Miriam Erickson Brown, CEO, Anderson Erickson Dairy Company; Hank Izzo, Vice President, Research and Development Mars Snackfood U.S.; and Susan Neely, CEO, American Beverage Association.

    Byron Garrett, CEO of the National PTA developed a series of recommendations for the upcoming re-authorization of the Child Nutrition Act. PTA’s recommendations include 1) requiring policies for the provision of recess, physical education, and regulation of food marketing in schools to be included in local wellness policies, 2) requiring periodic assessments of the development, notification, implementation, and content of local wellness policies, 3) increasing reimbursement rates for school meals, 4) increasing the promotion of school meals programs and reduce the administrative barriers that limit participation, 5) requiring the development of best practices for the processing of USDA commodities to more closely align these products with the 2005 Dietary Guidelines for Americans, and 6) require the USDA to update the national nutrition standards for school foods sold outside of the school meals programs in order to keep pace with emerging scientific evidence.

    More information can be found at: http://agriculture.senate.gov/ .


Energy: Clean Energy Act Draft Released

    On April 1, 2009, Congressmen Henry Waxman (Los Angeles) and Ed Markey (MA) released a "discussion draft" of the American Clean Energy and Security Act as a starting point for a comprehensive energy and climate legislation. Waxman and Markey expect to complete work on the legislation by Memorial Day, and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (San Francisco) has indicated that action will be taken on the bill this year.

    California companies and governments have led much of the energy innovation in the U.S., and the Waxman-Markey proposal draws considerable inspiration from California’s example. While a final bill is a long way away, the state’s industries may be well positioned to compete successfully under legislation that resembles the latest draft in any substantial way.

    The bill is divided into four major titles: Clean Energy, Energy Efficiency, Reducing Global Warming Pollution, and Transitioning to a Clean Energy Economy. Some of the major proposed provisions of each title are outlined below. A more comprehensive outline will be available shortly.

    The draft of Title I, which is titled “Clean Energy” includes provisions that:

    - establishes a ‘renewable energy standard' that will require an increasing percentage of electricity sold by utilities to come from renewable sources, reaching 25 percent by 2025.

    - includes all retail electric utility service providers, including investor-owned utilities, municipal utilities, and rural coops, who sell at least 1 million megawatt-hours of electricity annually, but includes compliance flexibility that would allow utilities to meet targets with federal RECs and would allow Governors to petition to reduce the RES requirement by up to 20-percent in any given year, as long as they meet certain requirements.

    - provides three times the number of RECs for electricity generated through distributed renewable sources (like solar PV),

    - allows states like California, who already have their own RPS (renewable portfolio standard) programs, to continue their programs; the federal RES will not interfere with individual state policies

    - includes several provisions relating to carbon capture and storage, including incentives for research, coal-fired power plant standards, and health and human safety requirements

    - requires electric utilities to plan for electric vehicle infrastructure, and changes the existing low carbon fuels standard

    - promotes smart grid by requiring FERC to reform regional planning to modernize the electric grid,

    - and authorizes federal agencies to sign contracts of as long as 30 years for purchase of renewable energy.

    The “Energy Efficiency” portion, Title II, includes provisions that:

    - calls for a thirty percent improvement in energy efficiency in energy codes for new commercial buildings and homes, and a fifty percent after 2016

    - sets efficiency standards for lighting and appliances,

    - requires regions to set greenhouse gas emissions reductions goals relative to transportation planning,

    - and requires natural gas and electric utilities to accomplish energy savings equal to 10 and 15 percent, respectively, by 2020

    Provisions of the Reducing Global Warming Pollution portion (Title III):

    - establishes a market-based program for reducing global warming pollution from electric utilities, oil companies, large industrial sources, etc. The program will require covered entities to have tradable federal permits, called "allowances," for each ton of pollution emitted into the atmosphere. The program reduces the number of available allowances issued each year to ensure that aggregate emissions from the covered entities are reduced by 3% below 2005 levels in 2012, 20% below 2005 levels in 2020, 42% below 2005 levels in 2030, and 83% below 2005 levels in 2050,

    - allows covered entities to increase their emissions above their allowances if they can obtain "offsetting" reductions at lower cost from other sources.

    - establishes a rolling two-year compliance period, effectively allowing covered entities to borrow from one year ahead without penalty. Allowances from two to five years in the future can be borrowed under limited circumstances.

    -directs EPA to create a "strategic reserve" of about 2.5 billion allowances by setting aside a small number of allowances authorized to be issued each year thereby creating a cushion in case prices rise faster than expected

    -directs EPA to make allowances from the reserve available through an auction when allowance prices rise to unexpectedly high levels. The proceeds of the auction will be used to purchase additional offsets that will replenish the strategic reserve

    - directs EPA to achieve additional reductions in global warming pollution by entering into agreements to prevent international deforestation. By 2020, these supplemental reductions will achieve reductions equivalent to 10% of U.S. emissions in 2005. These are low-cost reductions in global warming pollution that can be secured by devoting approximately 5% of the allowance value to the program

    - FERC is charged with regulating the cash market in emission allowances and offsets.

    - provides that CO2 and other greenhouse gases may not be regulated as criteria pollutants or hazardous air pollutants on the basis of their effect on global warming. The draft also provides that new source review does not apply to these global warming pollutants

    Title IV, titled “Transitioning to a Clean Energy Economy,” includes the following items:

    - authorizes a number of programs that may later be funded, depending on committee negotiations, by allowance allocations and auction revenues

    - adopts the Inslee-Doyle proposal for transitional rebates to certain energy-intensive manufacturing facilities making basic commodity products that are subject to strong international competition

    - creates worker training, education, and transition program

    - authorizes assistance for deploying clean technologies to developing countries

    - requires NOAA to perform a national vulnerability assessment, evaluating regional vulnerabilities to climate change impacts on human health, natural resources, and infrastructure and provide resources for domestic and international adaptation.

    The draft and more information can be accessed at: http://energycommerce.house.gov/ .


Homeland Security: Appropriations Panel Examines Safety of Containerized Cargo

    On Wednesday, April 3, 2009, the House Appropriations Subcommittee on Homeland Security held a hearing regarding cargo, container, and supply chain security. It featured testimony from Jayson Ahern, Acting Commissioner of Customs and Border Protection (CBP); Charles Gallaway, Acting Director of the Domestic Nuclear Detection Office (DNDO); and Thomas Winkowski, Assistant Commissioner for CBP’s Office of Field Operations.

    California has a central interest in containerized security. Nearly half of the nation’s containerized cargo is transshipped through California ports.

    CBP’s Jayson Ahern testified that Congress should reconsider a legal mandate that requires 100% of cargo containers to be scanned for weapons of mass destruction at foreign ports before they are shipped to the United States. The mandate, to be implemented by 2012, was instituted in a homeland security bill in 2007.

    Earlier this year, newly confirmed Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano told lawmakers in late February that meeting the deadline was not feasible, due to insufficient technology as well as the difficulty of obtaining authorization from foreign nations. At the hearing, Ahern testified that CBP currently scans cargo entering U.S. ports of entry using polyvinyl toluene (PVT)-based radiation portal monitors that can detect radiation, but cannot distinguish between threat materials and naturally-occurring radioactive material, such as kitty litter and ceramic tiles. Next-generation technologies will be more sophisticated, but they are not yet ready for implementation. As a result, DNDO has de-scoped the Cargo Advanced Automated Radiography System (CAARS) program from an acquisition program to a research and development-focused program. CAARS was specifically developed to specifically detect nuclear material. Ahern testified that the 100% requirement “needs to be thoughtfully reconsidered.”

    Subcommittee Chairman David Price (NC) acknowledged that there may need to be revisions to the comprehensive screening requirement, but asked, “The question is, absent a ‘100 percent solution,’ are current programs adequate to mitigate risk? If not, what needs to be done?”

    Subcommittee ranking Republican Hal Rogers (KY) commented that DHS has made “tremendous progress at improving the security of the more than 25 million cargo containers that enter our country each year.” He lauded the department for “adding rigor to its risk-based approach to cargo security.” Regarding the 100% screening requirement, Rogers said, “Because of the scope and complexity of the cargo shipping industry, the draconian treatment of every aspect of the supply chain is simply unworkable.”

    Rogers separately commented, “As part of DHS's efforts to confront the drug war and support Mexico's noble efforts against the cartels, CBP will reportedly embark on a new, $95 million effort to screen 100% of the rail containers flowing south into Mexico and step up inspections of outbound traffic at our ports of entry.”:

    Ahern’s prepared testimony is available at http://www.dhs.gov/ynews/testimony/testimony_1238610092655.shtm .


Immigration: House Judiciary Examines 287(g) Enforcement

    The House Judiciary Subcommittee on Immigration, Citizenship, Refugees, Border Security, and International Law, and the Subcommittee on the Constitution, Civil Rights, and Civil Liberties held a joint hearing on Thursday, April 2, 2009 on “The Public Safety and Civil Rights Implications of State and Local Enforcement of Federal Immigration Laws.” Section 287(g) of the Immigration and Nationality Act was enacted by Congress in the 1990s to authorize the federal government to enter into voluntary agreements – Memoranda of Agreement (MOAs) – with state and local law enforcement agencies, under which designated officers in state and local police departments would receive training and then partner with federal immigration enforcement agencies to enforce U.S. immigration law.

    Witnesses at the hearing included: Julio Cesar Mora, Avondale, AZ; Antonio Ramirez, Frederick, Maryland Community Advocate; Deborah Weissman, Reef C. Ivey II Distinguished Professor of Law, Director of Clinical Programs, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill School of Law; Ray Tranchant, Operations Director, Advanced Technology Center, Virginia Beach, VA, and Adjunct Professor at Cambridge College, Cambridge, MA, Chesapeake Campus and Bryant and Stratton College, Virginia Beach, VA; David Harris, Professor of Law, University of Pittsburgh School of Law; Hubert Williams, President, Police Foundation; George Gascon, Chief, Mesa Police Department, Mesa, AZ; and Kris Kobach, Professor of Law, University of Missouri – Kansas City School of Law.

    Issues discussed at the hearing included:

    - whether state and local law enforcement officers should be involved in enforcing federal immigration law, and whether doing so distracts from the enforcement of local criminal laws;

    - whether law enforcement personnel are engaging in racial profiling and discrimination when stopping and detaining individuals of color and ethnicity; and

    - whether the number of designated 287(g) officers is sufficient and whether the training and resources provided to them are sufficient.

    For the testimony of the witnesses, go to: http://judiciary.house.gov .

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