Slew of revived tech bills passes house

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Correction: Jan. 11, 2017
A previous version of this article said the TALENT Act passed the House with other legislation Jan. 10. The House passed the TALENT Act Jan. 11.

The House passed Tuesday several bills from Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy’s Innovation Initiative portfolio, including legislation that would allow for government employees to be reimbursed for trips using ridesharing apps, such as Uber and Lyft, or bikeshare programs.

Here are some of the bills on the Innovation Initiative portfolio that passed the House Tuesday:

H.R.288 – Small Business Broadband Deployment Act – passed

The bill would exempt small businesses from having to comply with the Federal Communications Commission’s recently enacted Open Internet rules, also known as net neutrality.

H.R.321 – Inspiring the Next Space Pioneers, Innovators, Researchers, and Explorers (INSPIRE) Women Act – passed

The bill directs NASA’s administrator to support several programs that expose children to career possibilities in NASA.

It also directs the administrator to submit a report to a committee in the House and in the Senate on: “how NASA can best facilitate and support both current and retired astronauts, scientists, engineers, and innovators, including early career female astronauts, scientists, engineers, and innovators, to engage with K–12 female STEM students and inspire the next generation of women to consider participating in the fields of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics and to pursue careers in aerospace.”

H.R.255 – Promoting Women in Entrepreneurship Act – passed

The bill authorizes the National Science Foundation to “encourage its entrepreneurial programs to recruit and support women to extend their focus beyond the laboratory and into the commercial world.”

H.R.239 – Support for Rapid Innovation Act of 2017 – passed

“This bill amends the Homeland Security Act of 2002 to direct the Under Secretary for Science and Technology of the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) to support the research, development, testing, evaluation and transition of cybersecurity technologies,” the bill’s summary says.

H.R.240 – Leveraging Emerging Technologies Act of 2017 – passed

The bill requires DHS to engage emerging tech companies to address mission needs.

It also allows the department’s secretary to designate people or office space to areas with “high concentrations of such innovative and emerging technology developers and firms.”

H.R.274 – Modernizing Government Travel Act – passed

The bill allows for government employees to be reimbursed for trips using ridesharing apps, such as Uber and Lyft, or bikeshare programs.

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Congress, Government IT News, Kevin McCarthy