GovTrack’s Bill Summary
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The bill’s title was written by the bill’s sponsor. H.R. stands for House of Representatives bill.
We don’t have a summary available yet.
The summary below was written by the Congressional Research Service, which is a nonpartisan division of the Library of Congress.
The summary below was written by the House Republican Conference, which is the caucus of Republicans in the House of Representatives.
This summary can be found at http://www.gop.gov/bill/112/1/hr2302.
Section 1--Quarterly reports to Congress on conferences sponsored by the department
Current law does not require the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) to provide Congress with detailed financial data related to functions such as conferences and other large-scale meetings. Typically, VA holds several of these types of meetings annually, which is partially reflected in the significant increase in the VA's budget request for travel from $289 million in FY 2011, to $394 million in FY 2012.
Section 2--Submission of certain information by the Secretary of Veterans Affairs
Currently, VA's Office of Congressional and Legislative Affairs (OCLA) inconsistently applies an unwritten policy regarding the types of information requests from the Committee on Veterans' Affairs that require a signed letter from the Chairman of the Committee or a Chairman of a Subcommittee.
Section 3--Publication of data on employment of certain veterans by Federal contractors
Section 4212 of title 38, United States Code, requires companies with Federal contracts worth $100,000 or more to have an affirmative action plan to hire veterans and to report certain veteran-related employment data annually to the U.S. Department of Labor (DoL). There is doubt that DoL does indeed enforce the requirement to submit these reports. Because these reports are not made public, there is no proof that Federal contractors are taking the necessary steps to employ qualified veterans or that their Federal contracts include an affirmative action clause.
H.R. 2302 would require the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) to provide both the Senate and House Committees on Veterans' Affairs a quarterly accounting of actual expenses related to conferences hosted or co-hosted by VA with attendance of 50 or more individuals, or that cost in excess of $20,000. The report would be required within 30 days of the conclusion of each quarter and must also include an estimate of actual conference expenses for the current quarter.
Section 2 would clarify that a request by a covered Member of the House or Senate Committee on Veterans' Affairs is a covered disclosure under the Privacy Act and a permitted disclosure under Health Information Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA). The section would also clarify that a covered Member of either Committee includes the Chairman or Ranking Member of the House or Senate Committee on Veterans' Affairs, a Chairman or Ranking Member of a Subcommittee of the House or Senate Committee on Veterans' Affairs, or the designee of such Chairmen or Ranking Members. Lastly, the section requires that the Secretary of Veterans Affairs also submit a copy of the information requested by a covered Member of the Committee to the Chairman of the full Committee when submitting such information.
Section 3 would require the Secretary of Labor to establish a public website for the purpose of disclosing certain information from contractors with contracts over $100,000. Under current statute, these contractors are required to take “affirmative action” to “employ and advance in employment qualified covered veterans.” The contractors are required to report on various aspects of their affirmative action program to hire veterans. (The reports are commonly referred to as the VETS 100 and VETS 100A reports.)
The Congressional Budget Office (CBO) estimates that any costs associated with implementing H.R. 2302 would be insignificant over the 2012-2016 period. Enacting H.R. 2302 would not affect direct spending or revenues; therefore, pay-as-you-go procedures do not apply.
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The bill contains the following citations to other parts of U.S. law:
Slip laws refer to enacted bills and joint resolutions in their original form as enacted by Congress, that is, before other laws amend them. Slip laws are cited as “Public Law XXX-YYY”, where XXX is the number of the Congress in which the bill or resolution was introduced.
The United States Code is the compilation of permanent laws enacted by Congress. Temporary and other non-permanent laws do not appear in the United States Code. (About half of the United States Code is the law itself, called positive law. The other half is merely a compilation of the laws but has no legal significance.)