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On the Floor
On October 23, 2007, the House passed the Joshua Omvig Veterans Suicide Prevention Act, H.R. 327, and the bill was signed into law on November 5, 2007. The legislation directs the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) to develop and implement a comprehensive program to reduce the incidence of suicide among veterans. It is named for an Iraq veteran who took his own life, and recognizes the special needs of veterans suffering from Post Traumatic Stress Disorder and elderly veterans who are at high risk for depression and experience high rates of suicide.
On October 23, 2007, the House passed the Violent Radicalization and Homegrown Terrorism Prevention Act, H.R. 1955. This bill is designed to take steps to better understand violent radicalization and homegrown terrorism in order to prevent them.
On October 17, 2007, the House passed the Federal Railroad Safety Improvement Act of 2007, H.R. 2095, and it was signed into law on October 16, 2008. The bill reauthorizes and renames Federal Railroad Administration ('FRA') and takes a variety of steps to strengthen rail safety including updating the limits on rail workers' hours of service to reduce fatigue-related accidents, nearly doubling the number of safety inspectors, requiring new safety technologies on trains, and upgrading safety at rail tracks and crossings.
On October 16, 2007, the House passed the Free Flow of Information Act of 2007, H.R. 2102. The bill would provide journalists with a qualified privilege as to sources and information, while at the same time, recognizing the need for effective law enforcement and robust national security. Freedom of the press is fundamental to our democracy and is essential to protecting the public's right to know. Without a federal media shield law to protect the confidential sources of journalists, freedom of the press is threatened.
On October 16, 2007, the House passed H.Res. 734, which raises objections to the Administration's withholding of information relating to corruption in Iraq. The American people and Congress deserve honest answers about the extent of corruption in the Iraqi government and whether corruption is fueling the insurgency and endangering our troops.
On October 30, 2007, the House passed the final version of the Internet Tax Moratorium Extension, H.R. 3678, which temporarily bans state and local taxes on Internet access. The bill extends the Internet tax moratorium for seven years. The bill was signed into law on October 31, 2007.
On November 15, 2007, the House passed the RESTORE Act of 2007 (Responsible Electronic Surveillance That is Overseen, Reviewed, and Effective), H.R. 3773.
On October 15, 2007, the House passed H.Con.Res 25, which expresses the sense of Congress that the goal of the U.S. is that America's farms, forests, and ranches provide 25 percent of the total energy consumed in America from renewable resources by 2025, while continuing to produce safe, abundant, and affordable food, feed, and fiber. The 110th Congress is taking America in a New Direction, working to strengthen our energy security by reducing American dependence on foreign oil.
On October 10, 2007, the House passed The National Affordable Housing Trust Fund Act of 2007, H.R. 2895, to establish a national affordable housing trust fund to build or preserve 1.5 million homes or apartments over the next 10 years, without increasing government spending or the federal deficit. The bill will initially allocate between $800 million and $1 billion annually directly to states and local communities, targeting funds for the construction of affordable housing and for lower income families facing the greatest housing affordability challenges.
On October 10, 2007, the House passed the Tax Collection Responsibility Act of 2007, H.R. 3056, to repeal the use of private debt collection companies to collect federal income taxes, delay the application of an onerous three percent withholding requirement on government payments, and discourage individuals who renounce their U.S. citizenship to avoid paying taxes.