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Rubio, Warner Applaud Senate Passage of Intel Authorization Act
Washington, D.C. — U.S. Senators Marco Rubio (R-FL) and Mark Warner (D-VA), Vice Chairman and Chairman, respectively, of the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence, applauded the Senate’s passage of the Intelligence Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2022 (IAA). The IAA authorizes funding, provides legal authorities, and enhances congressional oversight for the U.S. Intelligence Community.
“Our annual Intelligence Authorization Act provides critical authorities and funding for the U.S. Intelligence Community and its dedicated personnel, who provide our first line of defense to protect our nation,” Rubio said. “This year’s Act provides increased capabilities to confront the multitude of threats facing our nation, including the Chinese Communist Party and other autocratic states like Russia, Iran, Cuba and Venezuela; the dispersed terrorist and cyber threats; and also provides the tools for leveraging the commercial sector’s innovation to address intelligence challenges.”
“The Intelligence Authorization Act ensures that the men and women of our Intelligence Community have the resources, personnel and authorities they need to keep our country safe while operating under vigorous supervision and oversight,” Warner said. “The funding and authorities provided in the IAA will increase the Intelligence Community’s ability to detect and counter cyber threats, ransomware attacks, and other emerging threats, including those from adversaries such as China and Russia. This IAA will also reinforce oversight of the IC by strengthening protections for whistleblowers, reforming the security clearance process, and mandating a robust response to reported cases of ‘Havana Syndrome.’”
The Intelligence Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2022 ensures that the Intelligence Community (IC) can perform its critical mission to protect our country and inform decision makers, while under robust Congressional oversight, including in the following key areas:
- Increasing oversight and investments to address the growing national security threats and challenges posed by the Chinese Communist Party and its related influence operations, including in technology, infrastructure, procurement, and digital currencies;
- Improving the IC’s response to the anomalous health incidents, known as “Havana Syndrome,” by establishing an independent medical advisory board at the CIA, ensuring benefits, eligibility, and access to expert medical advice and facilities, and requiring protocols on testing, information safeguards, and reporting mechanisms;
- Improving the IC’s ability to adopt Artificial Intelligence (AI) and other emerging technologies;
- Bolstering investments in commercial imagery and analytic services to provide more unclassified collection and analysis to policymakers and warfighters in a more timely manner;
- Continuing the Committee’s commitment to reform and improve the security clearance process, including mandating a performance management framework to assess the adoption and effectiveness of the Executive Branch’s “Trusted Workforce 2.0” initiative; more accurately measuring how long it takes to transfer clearances between Federal agencies so it can be shortened; and creating IC-wide policies to share information on cleared contractors to enhance the effectiveness of insider threat programs;
- Ensuring strong congressional oversight of and protections for IC whistleblowers who come forward to report waste, fraud, or abuse;
- Addressing intelligence requirements in key locations worldwide, including in Latin America and Afghanistan, to confront foreign adversaries’ efforts to undermine the U.S. abroad;
- Strengthening the IC’s ability to conduct financial intelligence; and
- Supporting the IC’s efforts to assess unidentified aerial phenomena (UAP), further building upon the work of the UAP Task Force.