In The News


Lawmakers aim to 'get smart' about A.I. with help from giants like Amazon, Google, and IBM

by Jordan Novet

Rep. John K. Delaney, D-Md., wants to help the government to "get smart" about artificial intelligence. On Wednesday, he announced the launch of the bipartisan Congressional Artificial Intelligence Caucus, which will look to inform lawmakers on the current state of AI and then push for policy that could boost economic activity around AI and help citizens whose jobs are being replaced by automation. As part of the effort, Delaney told CNBC, he has met with Amazon and Google, he told CNBC in an … Continue Reading


No Good News for FAA Space Office in FY2018 Request

by Marcia S. Smith

After successfully fighting to get a budget boost in FY2017, the FAA's Office of Commercial Space Transportation (AST) is back to the drawing board in the Trump Administration's FY2018 request. The office won a $2 million increase to $19.8 million in FY2017, but the FY2018 request is back down to $17.9 billion. The FAA's budget request also includes funding for a space traffic management pilot project. Advocates for AST have insisted for years that more resources -- money and people -- are nee… Continue Reading


Congressman Kilmer vows to oppose the Trump budget

U.S. Representative Derek Kilmer (D-WA) said he would fight President Trump's 2018 budget proposal, and noted he's heard no support for cutting funding that provides for seniors and families in need. Kilmer, vice ranking member for the House Appropriations Committee and Washington's 6th District congressman, released the following statement after President Trump officially released his Fiscal Year 2018 budget proposal: "I meet with hundreds of businesses and community groups every year, and I … Continue Reading


Kilmer & Heck Speak out Against President Trump's Budget Proposal that Eliminates Investments in Puget Sound

Washington D.C. - Today, U.S. Representatives Derek Kilmer (WA-06) and Denny Heck (WA-10), co-founders of the Puget Sound Recovery Caucus, spoke out against President Trump's budget proposal which would completely eliminate several key programs that promote restoration efforts in the Puget Sound region. 'Puget Sound is an iconic body of water that is vital to our economy and to who we are as Washingtonians,' said Kilmer. 'The President's budget does not reflect this. President Trump has pledged… Continue Reading


Bipartisan bill would funnel royalties to $12B backlog

by Corbin Hiar

A bipartisan, bicameral coalition of lawmakers yesterday unveiled legislation that would use oil and gas royalties to reduce the National Park Service's $12 billion backlog of deferred maintenance projects. The "National Park Service Legacy Act" will be introduced in the upper chamber by Sen. Mark Warner (D-Va.) and in the House by Rep. Derek Kilmer (D-Wash.). The initial co-sponsors of the bill are Sen. Rob Portman (R-Ohio) and Reps. Will Hurd (R-Texas), Colleen Hanabusa (D-Hawaii) and Dave Re… Continue Reading


Lawmakers Introduce Bill to Jump Start Overdue Maintenance Projects in National Parks

Bipartisan legislation from Kilmer, Hurd, Hanabusa, and Reichert would help reduce the more than $11 billion park maintenance backlog. WASHINGTON, DC - Today, Representatives Derek Kilmer (D-WA), Will Hurd (R-TX), Colleen Hanabusa (D-HI), and Dave Reichert (R-WA) introduced a bipartisan bill to jump start overdue maintenance projects in national parks. The National Park Service Legacy Act would provide investments that would go toward reducing the more than $11 billion backlog the National Pa… Continue Reading


Connelly: Sec. DeVos would cut public education, promote charter schools, vouches

by Joel Connelly

The U.S. Department of Education plans to slash a range of public education programs, from public service loan forgiveness to Special Olympics education programs, according to near-final budget documents. The documents, first reported by the Washington Post, show part of the savings would go to pet programs of U.S. Education Secretary Betsy DeVos, expanding vouchers and charter schools for private and religious schools, and pushing public schools to choice-friendly policies. The cuts, totali… Continue Reading


New Zealand Embassy hosts Regional D.C. Fly-In delegation

As part of the 2017 Regional D.C. Fly-In we were honored to be hosted at the New Zealand Embassy for an international trade policy reception. Attendees heard from New Zealand Ambassador Timothy Groser and Congressman Derek Kilmer on the importance of trade, good trade policy, and diplomacy. New Zealand was a member of the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) agreement and is now part of the 'TPP 11', the remaining countries in the agreement that are moving forward with a trade deal without the US. A… Continue Reading


Deploying service members could end TV, internet contracts without fees under Costello bill

Deploying active-duty service members could terminate television and internet service contracts without penalty under bipartisan legislation introduced by U.S Rep. Ryan Costello (R-PA) last week. The measure, which Costello introduced with U.S. Rep. Derek Kilmer (D-WA), would expand protections under the Servicemembers Civil Relief Act (SCRA) to ensure active-duty troops aren't penalized with termination fees when they're given orders to move or deploy. "When servicemembers are preparing to re… Continue Reading


Congressman Kilmer: Trump won't deal with voter suppression

U.S. Representative Derek Kilmer slammed President Trump for making "spurious claims" of voter fraud following the announcement of a new executive order Thursday calling for a new commission to examine voting irregularities. The president has claimed - without a hint of evidence - that millions of people illegally cast votes in the November 2016 election. Trump lost the popular vote by approximately 3 million votes, but gained the presidency through a win in the Electoral College. Kilmer (D-WA… Continue Reading


GAO Requested to Study Restoring FAA Commercial Space Office to Secretary's Level

by Marcia S. Smith

Three members of the House have sent a letter to the Government Accountability Office (GAO) requesting a study on the feasibility of elevating the Federal Aviation Administration's (FAA's) Office of Commercial Space Transportation (FAA/AST) to the Secretary of Transportation's office. Advocates believe that would facilitate getting needed financial and personnel resources to allow the office to fulfill its duties as the commercial space launch business expands. Reps. Derek Kilmer (D-Washington)… Continue Reading


Lawmakers step in after Tacoma organization denied grants by Dept. of Education

by Patrick Quinn

TACOMA, Wash. - A Tacoma organization was denied federal funding after their three grant proposals were denied by the Department of Education. The Metropolitan Development Council helps low-income, first-generation high school students pursue college education through Upward Bound, a federally-funded program. In April, the MDC learned their three grant proposals were denied due to "exceeding the budget." "It was a surprise and disappointment," said Tom McNair-Huff, Director of Communica… Continue Reading


“Mr. Floatie” will no longer float in Salish Sea

VICTORIA, B.C. - Mr. Floatie officially retired Friday. The mythical mascot represented the raw sewage Victoria, B.C. has dumped into the Salish Sea. But Canadian officials have started construction on a $765 million waste water treatment plant. And Sixth District Congressman Derek Kilmer says that's great news for his constituents along the coast of the Strait of Juan de Fuca. "That represents enormous progress," Kilmer says. He says members of the Canadian parliament are committed to seei… Continue Reading


Poop in Puget Sound sickened customers but really hurt oystermen’s livelihood

by Rob Hotakainen

WASHINGTON, D.C. - John Hansen says there's an easy explanation for why he can no longer sell his shellfish: There's just too much poop in the waters of Puget Sound. When nearly 40 people were sickened in March after eating raw oysters, the Washington state Department of Health traced the outbreak to shellfish beds along a three-mile stretch of Hammersley Inlet. It includes Hansen's farm, South Sound Mariculture, one of 31 companies that had to shut down. States officials blamed the illnesses o… Continue Reading


3 House Lawmakers Ask OPM to Simplify Federal Cyber Talent Hiring Process

by Ramona Adams

Reps. Derek Kilmer (D-Washington), Kathleen Rice (D-New York) and Josh Gottheimer (D-New Jersey) have urged the Office of Personnel Management to modify requirements and streamline the recruitment process for federal cybersecurity jobs. Kilmer, Rice and Gottheimer currently serve as co-chairs of the New Democrat Coalition's Cybersecurity Task Force and told Acting OPM Director Kathleen McGettigan in a joint letter released May 1 that the agency should look to the private sector for ideas to opt… Continue Reading


Jetty-area moratorium extended, revised

by Angelo Bruscas

The Ocean Shores City Council has extended and modified its moratorium on the acceptance of applications for new development or redevelopment of properties in the area just north of the jetty along Ocean Shores Boulevard where erosion continues to impact the shoreline. "We're trying to keep people from harm's way of their house falling into the ocean until we have a better grasp on the erosion issue," said City Attorney Brent Dille. The 9-month moratorium specifically applies to Block 1, Divis… Continue Reading


Kilmer explains his ‘no’ vote on repeal of Affordable Care Act

U.S. Representative Derek Kilmer said the U.S. House's repeal of the Affordable Care Act marks more broken promises by President Trump. Kilmer released the following statement after the House voted on the American Health Care Act: "President Trump has repeatedly promised that any effort to replace the Affordable Care Act will lower costs, protect folks with pre-existing conditions, and won't lead to a loss in coverage for folks who have it now," said Kilmer, Washington's 6th District congressm… Continue Reading


Legislators call for more flexible cyber hiring and training

by Chase Gunter

Three Democratic members of Congress want the government to borrow private-sector practices to improve federal hiring and training and bolster the cybersecurity workforce. In a letter to Office of Management and Budget Acting Director Kathleen McGettigan, Reps. Derek Kilmer (D-Wash.), Josh Gottheimer (D-N.J.) and Kathleen Rice (D-N.Y.), who co-chair the New Democrat Coalition Cybersecurity Task Force, suggested ways to tackle the "unprecedented" cybersecurity challenges and lackluster governmen… Continue Reading


News Dems Urge OPM to Hire Mroe Cyber Pros Without 4-Year Degrees

by Joseph Marks

A trio of moderate congressional Democrats pushed the Office of Personnel Management this week to update its hiring practices to open up more federal jobs to cybersecurity workers without 4-year degrees. There's no official requirement cybersecurity-focused federal employees have bachelor's degrees, but in practice, most do because of requirements in job postings. "Given the increasing need for cybersecurity personnel, OPM should be more flexible with job requirements," the co-chairs of the Ne… Continue Reading


Kilmer pushing ethics training for House members

(Washington DC) - Local U-S Congressman Derek Kilmer is pushing for more ethics training for legislators. This week Kilmer led a letter to congressional leadership calling for annual ethics training for members. In a letter to Speaker of the House Paul Ryan and Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, Kilmer and other members pointed out that House staff and other political appointees take ethics training for their jobs. Kilmer says his own staff have to take far more ethics training than he does as an … Continue Reading

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