DC Digest – January 13, 2013

In Today’s Issue:

  • This Week in Washington
  • Twitter Interview: Fuqua’s Health Sector Management Program Week in DC
  • Duke Prof to Testify on Drones Before Senate Commerce Committee
  • Associations Ask Senator Leahy to Hold a Second Hearing on Patent Legislation


THIS WEEK IN WASHINGTON

  • Government Funding:  Later today, lead appropriators are expected to announce the details of a $1.012 spending bill that would fund agencies through the end of the fiscal year. Pending full Congressional consideration and passage, the House of Representatives will vote on Tuesday on a “clean” three-day continuing resolution to keep the federal government running through Jan. 18, giving Congress the week to pass the omnibus bill. The current spending measure expires on January 15.
  • White House: On Friday, President Obama will deliver his speech outlining proposed reforms to the National Security Agency. The location and timing of the remarks have yet to be announced. The Vice-President will lead the U.S. Delegation to Ariel Sharon’s, the former prime minister of Isreal.
  • Unemployment Insurance: The Senate is set to take a procedural vote on a three-month short term extension of unemployment insurance for 1.3 million Americans later today. In the House, Speaker John Boehner (R-OH) has said that extended benefits should not add to the deficit.
  • Supreme Court: At 10 a.m. Monday, the Supreme Court will hold ninety minutes of oral argument on a constitutional controversy arising out of gridlock in the Senate over presidential appointments. The case is National Labor Relations Board v. Noel Canning, and addresses the meaning and reach of presidential recess appointments.

Read More:
Closing in on a budget deal (Politico)
Obama to announce changes to NSA surveillance on Jan. 17 (Washington Post)
Defining the scope of the President’s recess appointment powers: In Plain English (Scotusblog.com)

 

TWITTER INTERVIEW: FUQUA’S HEALTH SECTOR MANAGEMENT PROGRAM WEEK IN DC
Students and faculty in Fuqua’s Health Sector Management Program (HSM) traveled to DC last week as part of the program’s annual Week in DC (WIDC).  The WIDC course, HLTHMGMT716: Health Systems and Policy, brings daytime MBA, executive MBA, and MPP students to Washington to learn about health policy from members of Congress, agency officials, think tank fellows, and other senior health policy practitioners working on the front lines of health care policy.

The week-long program included a packed schedule of back-to-back speakers, and OFR spoke to HSM professor Don Taylor via Twitter on the heels of their visit last week.

Read More:
Devils in DC: Don Taylor and Fuqua’s HSM Program (governmentrelations.duke.edu)
DUKE PROF TO TESTIFY ON DRONES BEFORE SENATE COMMERCE COMMITTEE
The U.S. Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation will hold a hearing on Wednesday, January 15 to examine the growth of unmanned aerial systems (UAS), commonly referred to as “drones”, in the United States, including the potential economic benefits of drone operations, and the progress of steps taken to facilitate the development of the industry through the FAA Modernization and Reform Act of 2012.

Dr. Missy Cummings, director of the Humans and Autonomy Lab at Duke, will testify before the panel.

Read More:
The Future of Unmanned Aviation in the U.S. Economy (commerce.senate.gov)

ASSOCIATIONS ASK SENATOR LEAHY TO HOLD 2ND HEARING ON PATENT LEGISLATION
The higher education associations that are working together on patent reform sent a letter to Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Patrick Leahy (D-VT) on January 3 asking him to hold a second hearing on legislation to reform patent litigation.  The purpose of the hearing would be to allow universities and other stakeholders to testify about the complexities surrounding this issue.The Committee held a hearing December 17 on abusive patent litigation, where witnesses primarily from companies and industry associations discussed the bill introduced by Senator Leahy, the Patent Transparency and Improvements Act of 2013, as well as patent litigation bills introduced by Senators Orrin Hatch (R-UT), John Cornyn (R-TX), and Charles Schumer (D-NY).  Senators also reviewed the House-passed Innovation Act.At the hearing, titled “Protecting Small Businesses and Promoting Innovation by Limiting Patent Troll Abuse,” several Judiciary Committee members urged that the panel be deliberative in developing legislation on this complex issue and called for holding another hearing to hear from stakeholders not represented at the hearing, such as universities.Read More:
Letter to Senator Leahy (aau.edu)