This week, the House takes steps to reduce contractor fraud as it considers HR5712, which requires contractors to alert the federal government when one of its agents violates federal criminal law or receives significant overpayment. (Seems like common sense, but apparently such a law isn’t on the books.) The House is also scheduled to take up the Contractors and Federal Spending Accountability Act, which directs the General Services Administration to create a database of civil and criminal proceedings brought against state and federal contractors. (While the nonprofit POGO maintains such records, strikingly, the government never has.) Also on the docket are amendments to the Small Business Act, a vote on Coast Guard authorization, and whether to establish a one-year moratorium on several White House-issued Medicaid regulations that jeopardize rehabilitative and case management servies for youth, among other vulnerable groups.
The Senate votes on S2831, the Lily Ledbetter Fair Pay Act, which would remedy last year’s draconian Supreme Court ruling that requires all victims of wage discrimination to file a complaint within 180 days (regardless of whether an employee is aware of the discrimination at the time). The Senate additionally takes up the Disabled Veterans Insurance Improvement Act, which would increase the amount of supplemental life insurance available for totally disabled veterans from $30,000 to $50,000.
Also this week, Congress holds hearings on the Jubilee Act, detainee treatment, Iran’s nuclear ambitions, national security letters, the FDA’s foreign drug inspection program and crises in Tibet and Darfur. On Tuesday, the Senate Commerce Committee will hear from Lawrence Lessig and others on the future of the internet and issues of net neutrality.