|Sen. Baucus Makes Trade
Promotion Authority Proposal
|7/25. Sen. Max Baucus
(D-MT) released a proposal for extending trade promotion
authority (also known as "fast track") to the
President. He released a summary
[PDF] and a statement
[PDF]; however, he has not yet introduced a bill. Sen. Baucus
proposes a two year grant of authority, with the possibility
of extension for an additional three years. And, he includes
labor and environment provisions.
Sen. Baucus is the new Chairman of the Senate Finance
Committee, which has jurisdiction over this legislation.
He stated that "There has been a great deal of discussion
of how to develop a realistic, bipartisan approach to fast
track. But there has been very little serious work. The
Administration misses few opportunities to call upon the
Congress to grant fast track. But it has yet to table a
serious proposal or bill to achieve that goal. Some of my
colleagues in the House have introduced a fast track bill. But
it is a bill that completely ignores the most controversial
issue of the day – the appropriate handling of labor rights
and environmental issues. No one has put forward a truly
bipartisan proposal on fast track extension."
Labor and Environment. Sen. Baucus proposes
"achieving agreements from countries not weaken their
labor or environmental laws to distort trade; provisions to
support existing labor rights and environmental norms; and
flexible enforcement procedure that allows the President to
select from a range of options, including trade sanctions,
fines, incentives, or other measures appropriate to the
IPR. Sen. Baucus also proposes to "Continue to
pursue efforts to protect intellectual property rights, taking
into account the need for special rules that may need to apply
to health emergencies."
E-Commerce. Sen. Baucus proposes to "Promote the
liberalization of services essential to e-commerce, including
telecommunications, computer related services, advertising and
business services, distribution services (including the
distribution of digitized content), information technology
services, and financial services, including internet
payments", "Seek the protection of intellectual
property both online and offline, including stronger
enforcement", and "Seek to eliminate all trade
barriers to digitized trade, especially the online delivery of
digitized content (including movies, music, software and
Other Bills. There are already several pending bills to
extend trade promotion authority to the President. Sen. Bob Graham (D-FL), Sen. Frank Murkowski
(R-AK), and others introduced, S
1104, the Trade Promotion Act of 2001. See also, S
599. On the House side, Rep. Phil Crane (R-IL)
has introduced HR
|Senate Holds Hearing On
Cybercrime and NIPC
|7/25. The Senate
Judiciary Committee's Technology, Terrorism, and
Government Information Subcommittee held a hearing on the National Infrastructure Protection
Center (NIPC) and cybercrime. The NIPC, which is a part of
the FBI, was created by Presidential Decision Directive (PDD)
63 in May of 1998 as a part of the federal government's
strategy to protect national infrastructures from hostile
attacks, especially computer based attacks.
Robert Dacey, of the Congress's General
Accounting Office (GAO), testified regarding a GAO study
of the NIPC. He concluded in his prepared
testimony that "we found that progress in developing
the analysis, warning, and information sharing capabilities
called for in PDD 63 has been mixed. The NIPC has initiated a
variety of critical infrastructure protection efforts that
have laid a foundation for future government wide efforts. In
addition, it has provided valuable support and coordination
related to investigating and otherwise responding to attacks
on computers. However, at the close of our review in February
2001, the analytical and information sharing capabilities that
PDD 63 asserts are needed to protect the nation's critical
infrastructures had not yet been achieved, and the NIPC had
developed only limited warning capabilities."
See, prepared testimony of witnesses: Ron
Dick (NIPC), Robert
Dacey (GAO), Sallie
McDonald (General Services Administration), James
Savage (Secret Service), Michehl
Gent (North American Electric Reliability Council), and Christopher
Klaus (Internet Security Systems).
|FCC Approves Fox Chris
|7/25. The FCC approved the application of Fox Television
Stations to acquire licenses of 10 TV stations held by
Chris-Craft Industries and its subsidiaries BHC Communications
and United Television. The FCC approved the license transfers
with conditions requiring the licensee to comply with FCC
rules on television duopolies, the 35% national television
audience cap, and newspaper / broadcast cross ownership.
|Export Administration Act
|7/25. The House
International Relations Committee approved HR 2602 by a
voice vote. This bill, which is sponsored by Rep. Henry Hyde (R-IL),
would extend the Export Administration Act (EAA) until
November 20, 2001. It is currently set to expire in August.
The Senate Banking
Committee passed S
149 on March 22, 2001. That bill would extend the EAA and
ease restraints on the export of most dual use products, such
as computers and software. There are several variations of
this bill pending in the House, including HR
2568 (Dreier), HR
2581 (Gilman), and HR
7/24. Sen. Tom Daschle
(D-SD), the Senate Majority Leader, briefly addressed the EAA
on the Senate floor. He stated that "the Export
Administration Act is also in peril. The act expires during
the August recess. The administration has indicated this is a
high priority for them. It is a high priority for our caucus,
but I think, on a bipartisan basis, Senators on both sides of
the aisle have indicated a strong desire not to allow this
legislation to expire in August. So it is my expectation that
it, too, must be dealt with prior to the time we leave."
See, Congressional Record, July 24, at Page S8102.
|7th Circuit Rules in Trade
|7/25. The U.S.
Court of Appeals (7thCir) issued its opinion
v. Accu-Tech Plastics, a case involving
misappropriation of trade secrets by former employees of 3M.
Facts. 3M makes carrier tape. Three employees of 3M who
were integral to 3M's development of carrier tape
manufacturing clandestinely formed their own company, Accu-Tech
Plastics, to manufacture and market resin sheeting, the
essential component of carrier tape. When 3M learned of Accu-Tech,
it terminated the individuals, and filed a complaint in U.S.
District Court (WDWisc)
against Accu-Tech and the three former employees.
Complaint. The complaint alleged, as to the three
individual defendants, breach of fiduciary duty, breach of
employment contracts, and misappropriation of trade secrets.
The complaint also alleged, as to Accu-Tech, misappropriation
of trade secrets, unfair competition, tortious interference
with prospective contractual relationships, and tortious
inducement to breach his employment contract with 3M.
Trial Court. The jury found that Accu-Tech had
misappropriated trade secrets from 3M, and that Accu-Tech's
founders had breached duties of loyalty owed to 3M. The
District Court overturned some of the jury's findings of
liability, upheld other findings, and granted 3M's request for
a permanent injunction barring the disclosure, but not the
use, of the trade secrets which the jury found Accu-Tech had
Appeals Court. Both sides appealed. The Appeals Court
affirmed the District Court on all matters, except that it
reversed and remanded the District Court's grant of summary
judgment to Accu-Tech on 3M's claim for unlawful competition.
|7/24. Rep. Henry Hyde
(R-IL) and others introduced HR 2602, a bill to extend the
Export Administration Act until November 20, 2001.
7/24. Rep. Bill
Thomas (R-CA) introduced HR 2603, a bill to implement the
agreement establishing a U.S. Jordan free trade area.
7/24. Rep. Mitch
McConnell (R-KY) introduced S 1232, a bill to provide for
the effective punishment of online child molesters, by
removing the requirement of interstate travel.
|7/25. Verizon notified the Rhode
Island Public Utilities Commission that it intends to file
271 application with the FCC to provide
interLATA services in Rhode Island. See, Verizon
7/25. The FCC published a
in the Federal Register of its most recent postponement of
auctions for spectrum licenses licenses in the 747-762 and
777-792 MHz band (Auction No. 31). These had been scheduled to
begin on September 12, 2001. See, Federal Register, July 25,
2001, Vol. 66, No. 143, at Pages 38704 - 38705.
7/25. The NCTA
filed a supplemental
brief [PDF] with the Supreme Court of the
United States in NCTA v. Gulf Power Company, the
pole attachments case.
|Thursday, July 26
|8:30 - 10:00 AM. Press breakfast on telecommunications
issues with former FCC Commissioner Harold Furchtgott-Roth.
RSVP to Veronique Rodman, Director of Public Affairs, AEI at
202-862-4871 or email@example.com.
9:00 AM. The Department of Commerce's Bureau of Export Administration's
Information Systems Technical Advisory Committee (ISTAC) will
hold the second session of a two day meeting. Part of the
meeting is open to the public, and part is closed. See, notice
in Federal Register, June 29, 2001, Vol. 66, No. 126, at Page
34613. Location: Herbert Hoover Building, Room 3884, 14th
Street between Pennsylvania Avenue and Constitution Avenue,
NW., Washington DC.
9:30 AM. The House
Commerce Committee's Subcommittee on Commerce, Trade, and
Consumer Protection will hold a hearing titled "How Do
Businesses Use Customer Information: Is the Customer’s
Privacy Protected?" The scheduled witnesses are Harriet
Pearson (IBM), Jacqueline Hourigan (General Motors), Zeke
Swift (Proctor & Gamble), Paul Misener (Amazon.com), David
Johnson, (Land’s End), Jennifer Barrett (Acxiom), Deborah
Zuccarini (Experian), John Ford (Equifax).Location: Room 2322,
9:30 AM - 2:00 PM. The Federalist
Society will host a conference titled Broadband Policy
for an Internet Age. The price to attend is $30. There is
no charge for students and Capitol Hill staff. See, online
registration page. Location: The National Press Club, 529
14th Street, NW, Washington DC.
• The first panel discussion is titled "What
Path to Broadband Paradise?" The panelists will be David
Baker (EarthLink), Robert Crandall (Brookings), James Glassman
(American Enterprise Institute), Thomas Hazlett (American
Enterprise Institute), Janusz Ordover (New York University),
and John Frantz (Verizon).
• The second panel is titled "Are Narrowband
Regulators Ready for a Broadband World?" The panelists
will be Kenneth Ferree, (FCC Cable Services Bureau), Raymond
Gifford (Colorado Public Utilities Commission), Randolph May
(Progress & Freedom Foundation), Howard Waltzman (House
Commerce Committee), and David Lawson (Sidley & Austin).
• There will be a lunch. The speaker will be
Alfred Kahn (Cornell University). The title of his address
will be "Knowing When To Let Go: The FCC and
10:00 AM. The Senate
Finance Committee will hold a business meeting. The agenda
includes S 643, a bill to implement the agreement establishing
a U.S. Jordan free trade area. Location: Room 215, Dirksen
2:00 PM. The House
Financial Services Committee's Capital Markets
Subcommittee will hold a hearing titled "Market Data II:
Implications to investors and market transparency of granting
ownership rights over stock quotes." Location: Room 2128,
Rayburn House Office Building.
2:00 PM. The House
Ways and Means Committee will hold a meeting to mark up HR
2603, the U.S. Jordan Free Trade Area Implementation Act of
2001, and HJRes 51, regarding Vietnam. Location: Room 1100,
2:30 PM. The Senate
Banking Committee will hold a hearing on several pending
nominations, including that of Michael Garcia to be
Assistant Secretary for Export Enforcement at the Department
of Commerce. Location: Room 538, Dirksen Building.
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