NSA Capitol Watch Newsletter July 2011

The House and Senate have adjourned for the August recess after passing legislation to raise the debit ceiling.


Both chambers will resume legislative business the week of September 5.


In This Issue


aMeet With Your Member of Congress in August

The August recess is the perfect opportunity for sheriffs to personally meet with their U.S. Senators and House of Representative members to discuss critical funding for state and local law enforcement programs, particularly Byrne JAG; COPS; SCAAP; and COPS Meth.


While the full House was slated to vote on the FY12 CJS Appropriations bill before August recess, the debt limit debate took precedence. The House recessed BEFORE it could consider the FY12 CJS Appropriations bill. That being said, IT IS IMPERATIVE THAT SHERIFFS CONTINUE OUTREACH! Consideration of FY12 CJS Appropriations is expected in September.


In regards to the U.S. House of Representatives, NSA continues to ask sheriffs to:

  1. Personally reach out to your House Representatives and continue to express how important Byrne JAG; COPS; SCAAP; and COPS Meth funding is to your offices.
  2. How the lack of funding, particularly in regards to SCAAP and COPS, would affect your office/state.
  3. Ask your House of Representative Members to do all that they can to RESTORE funding for COPS and SCAAP within the House FY12 CJS Appropriations bill - as both programs are currently zeroed out.


In regards to the U.S. Senate, NSA continues to ask sheriffs to:

  1. Personally reach out to your U.S. Senators and continue to express how important Byrne JAG; COPS; SCAAP; and COP Meth funding is to your offices.
  2. How the lack of funding for these programs would affect your office/state.
  3. Ask your U.S. Senators to do all that they can to ensure SIGNIFICANT funding for Byrne JAG; COPS; and SCAAP, as well as $25M for COPS Meth, in the Senate's FY12 CJS Appropriations bill.

In addition to CJS Appropriations, meeting personally with your U.S. Senators and House of Representative Members is a perfect opportunity to also ask them to support legislation to allocate the D Block to public safety (S911/HR607). Also, asking your House of Representative members to support HR498-State and Local Law Enforcement Hatch Act Reform Act of 2011.


For the appropriate talking points, please click on the various links below:

  1. House-Talking Points to Restore COPS and SCAAP 
  2. Senate-Talking Points on Senate FY12 CJS Appropriations Funding.
  3. Talking Points on D Block Legislation (S911/HR607)
  4. Fact Sheet and Sample Letter on HR498
bRobert Mueller Reconfirmed As FBI Director for Additional Two Years

On July 27, the Senate voted unanimously to reconfirm current FBI Director Robert Mueller for an additional two years, with his term now expiring on September 4, 2013.


Originally slated to end his 10-year tenure with the FBI on August 2, President Obama asked Director Mueller to stay on to provide continuity for the White House national security team.


As current law limits the tenure of the FBI Director to 10 years, Congressional action was required. Both the Senate and the House passed legislation that not only created a one-time extension for Director Mueller's term, but also required the President to re-nominate and the Senate to reconfirm Director Mueller.


NSA congratulates Director Mueller on his reconfirmation and looks forward to the continued strong partnership between the FBI and the nation's sheriffs.

cHR1981 Voted Out of House Judiciary Committee
The House Judiciary Committee passed HR19181-Protecting Children From Internet Pornographers Act of 2011 on July 28. The bill passed the full Judiciary Committee by a vote of 19-10.

The legislation, introduced by Congressman Smith (R-TX) and Congresswoman Wasserman Schultz (D-FL), originally had some push back from several member of the Judiciary Committee due to concerns regarding data retention and privacy issues. However, during the full Committee mark-up on July 28, Congressman Smith (R-TX) offered an amendment to the legislation to assuage concerns.  


The amendment narrowed HR1981 data retention requirement by exempting companies that provide "remote computing services," (such as free Wi-Fi provided by hotels; bookstores; and coffee shops), as that type of service does not involve assigning IP addresses to customers and subscribers. It also exempts business networks and free Wi-Fi access that could be provided by local governments. However, Investigators can still request data from commercial providers that will help them identify pedophiles and other criminals using these Internet services.


The amendment also clarifies that providers must retain not just a list of the IP addresses they assign to customers, but a log of the IP addresses and the corresponding account information needed to identify the customer.


Furthermore, to address cost concerns raised by providers, and to further protect customer privacy, the amendment limits access to the retained data to only governmental entities and gives providers up to 180 days after the date of enactment to comply with the retention requirement; and reduces the retention period from 18 months to 12 months.  


Along with the National Sheriffs' Association, HR1981 is support by the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children; the Major County Sheriffs' Association; the International Union of Police Associations; and the Fraternal Order of Police.


As the bill has passed the House Judiciary Committee, the bill can be brought up to the House Floor for a vote at any time. NSA will continue to work with Congressman Smith (R-TX) and Congresswoman Wasserman Schultz (D-FL) to pass this important legislation during the 112th Congress.

dDHS Names New Assistant Secretary for State and Local Law Enforcement

The Department of Homeland Security has named Louis Quijas as the new Assistant Secretary for State and Local Law Enforcement.  In this position, Mr. Quijas will serve as the principal Department-wide liaison with state, local, and tribal law enforcement, ensuring that both relevant information and policy development are coordinated with our non-Federal law enforcement partners.  


Assistant Secretary Quijas knows firsthand the unique challenges that state, local, and tribal law enforcement face, serving with the Kansas City (MO) Police Department for 25 years; as Chief of Police of the High Point Police Department (NC); and as the Assistant Director for the FBI's Office of Law Enforcement Coordination, a division he established under the request of FBI Director Mueller.


NSA congratulates Assistant Secretary Quijas on his appointment and looks forward to working with him in the coming years to continue to strengthen the partnership between DHS and the nation's sheriffs.

eWhite House Unveils Strategy to Combat Transnational Organized Crime

On July 25, the White House unveiled its Strategy to Combat Transnational Organization Crime for a myriad of stakeholders during a briefing at the White House. In attendance to discuss the strategy were: John Brennan, Assistant to the President for Counterterrorism and Homeland Security; ONDCP Director R. Gil Kerlikowske; Attorney General Eric Holder; Secretary of Homeland Security Janet Napolitano; Under Secretary of the Treasury for Terrorism and Financial Intelligence David Cohen; Under Secretary of State for Political Affairs William Burns; and Deputy Administrator of USAID Donald Steinberg.


The Strategy seeks to build, balance, and integrate the tools of American power to combat transnational organized crime and related threats to national security, as well as urging our foreign partners to do the same.  


Additionally, the Administration is pursuing five core policy objectives: (1) protecting Americans and our partners from transnational criminal networks;

               (2) helping partner countries improve governance and transparency; as well as helping to cut off the corruptive power of transnational criminal networks and sever state-crime alliances;

                 (3) protecting strategic markets and the U.S. financial system from transnational organized crime in addition to breaking the economic power of transnational criminal networks;

                 (4) targeting the infrastructure of transnational criminal networks, depriving them of their enabling means, and preventing the criminal facilitation of terrorism; and

                 (5) building international consensus, multilateral cooperation, and public-private partnerships to defeat transnational organized crime.


The full 2011 strategy can be found on the White House website at:  http://www.whitehouse.gov/sites/default/files/Strategy_to_Combat_Transnational_Organized_Crime_July_2011.pdf  


fONDCP & COPS Office Holds Meeting on Pharmacy Robberies

ON July 28, NSA, along with various federal, state, and local law enforcement officials, and representatives from the pharmacy community, attended a meeting held by ONDCP Director Gil Kerlikowske and the COPS Office to discuss the threat to public safety posed by pharmacy robberies and burglaries.


During the meeting, participants discussed the importance of public safety officials; the federal government; and the pharmacy community working together to share best practices for preventing and reducing diversion of prescription drugs from pharmacies and improve data collection regarding the scope of the problem.


Additionally, as part of the Administration's efforts to address the prescription drug abuse threat, the previous week, ONDCP also convened pharmacists, academics, and leaders representing independent and chain pharmacies to discuss ways to expand education opportunities regarding prescription drug abuse in colleges of pharmacy and through continuing education programs.


Prescription drug abuse is the Nation's fastest-growing and deadliest drug problem. Drug-induced deaths (driven primarily by prescription drug overdose) are now the second-leading cause of injury death in the country, behind only traffic crashes.


NSA looks forward to continuing to work with the Administration and our law enforcement partners to combat prescription drug abuse, as well as working to reduce the numbers of robberies and thefts of pharmacies, nationwide.

gD Block Continues to be Hot Issue on Capitol Hill

Allocating the D Block to public safety continues to be a hot-topic on Capitol Hill.


The week of July 25, the PSA (Public Safety Alliance) hosted a D Block event on Capitol Hill. Representatives from law enforcement, fire, and EMS were on hand to meet with various Members of Congress to urge Congress to enact legislation to allocate the D Block to public safety before the 10-year Anniversary of 9/11.


Additionally, the Senate Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs held a hearing on July 27 regarding public safety communications and the need to allocate the D Block to public safety.


NSA continues to work closely with our public safety; state and local intergovernmental; and industry partners to urge Congress to act when they return from the August recess.

hNSA Solidifies Affiliation with NACo
The National Sheriffs' Association further solidified its partnership with the National Association of Counties (NACo) by becoming an affiliate of NACo during NACo's Annual Conference in Portland in late July. NSA and NACo routinely work together on a variety of issues, particularly on Capitol Hill, which impact the nation's sheriffs and counties, such as the D Block; vital state and local law enforcement funding within the CJS and DHS Appropriations bills; and legislation and funding affecting mentally ill offenders

NSA's affiliation with NACo is an attempt to establish a more formal relationship between the two associations and only strengthens and reaffirms the current partnership.


In particular, as an affiliate, NSA will have a seat on NACo's Board of Directors to ensure sheriffs continue to provide their input on issues impacting counties nationwide. Additionally, NSA and NACo will work together to cross-promote, through our publications, conferences, and newsletters, various issues of interest to both sheriffs and counties.


NSA is thrilled with our new affiliation and we look forward to continue to work with our partners at NACo.
iCOPS Office Holds 2011 National Conference

The COPS Office held its 2011 National Conference on August 1-2 in Washington, D.C. The theme of the conference was Community Policing: Advancing Public Safety in a New Economy.


The conference had wonderful attendance by a multitude of state and local law enforcement; representatives from federal agencies, including Attorney General Holder; academics; and national organizations.


Sheriff Sue Rahr (King County, WA) had the honor of keynoting on August 1. The Sheriff addressed the need for law enforcement agencies to develop creative ways to perform the basic law enforcement tenants - protecting and serving - particularly in tough economy. Additionally, the Sheriff addressed the innovative issues of procedural justice and county-city contracting.


During the Conference, a myriad of workshops were held focusing on either: data, analysis, and technology; community engagement; leveraging resources; new approaches in policing; operations and personnel; youth safety; and grant management.


Sheriff Rahr, Sheriff Lee Baca (Los Angeles, CA); and Sheriff Mike Leidholt (Hughes County, SD) all participated on panels for various COPS Workshops during the Conference. Sheriff Rahr participated on a panel for a Procedural Justice workshop. Sheriff Baca participated on a panel for a workshop involving building trust between law enforcement and Arab and Muslim Americans. Sheriff Leidholt participated on a panel for a workshop focusing on building partnerships to advance tribal safety.


NSA congratulates the COPS Office a very successful 2011 National Conference!

News & Updates
Save the Date!
2012 Winter Conference
January 18-22, 2012
JW Marriott
Washington, DC

If you have any questions, please contact:
Stephanie Garlock


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