Washington, D.C. – U.S. Senator Susan Collins, a member of the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence, announced that the Intelligence Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2023 (IAA) passed the committee by a unanimous 16-0 vote with multiple provisions authored by Senator Collins. The bill, which was filed this week as S. 4503, authorizes funding, provides legal authorities, and enhances congressional oversight for the U.S. Intelligence Community.
“The Intelligence Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2023 will enhance the Intelligence Community’s ability to arm policy-makers with the necessary information and tools to defend U.S. interests against foreign adversaries. The bill bolsters intelligence support for Ukraine, improves the timeliness of the security clearance process, takes a major step forward to promote cybersecurity, and increases congressional oversight of the Intelligence Community,” said Senator Collins. “I look forward to continuing to work with Chairman Mark Warner, Vice Chairman Marco Rubio, Director of National Intelligence Avril Haines, and CIA Director William Burns to make progress on each of these important initiatives.”
The provisions authored by Senator Collins address the following issues:
- Bolstering intelligence support for Ukraine as it fights to defend its territorial integrity and sovereignty since Russia’s second unprovoked invasion.
- Driving improvements to the security clearance process by keeping the IC accountable for progress, including for timeliness in bringing cleared personnel on-board and ensuring that key management and contract oversight personnel in industry can obtain clearances. These provisions were co-authored with Chairman Warner. (Sections 504, 505, and 506)
- Establishing cybersecurity minimum standards for classified networks and systems (Section 314). This provision would require the Director of National Intelligence, in consultation with the Director of the National Security Agency, to (1) establish IC-wide minimum cybersecurity standards for systems that transmit classified information, (2) require IC elements to meet the deadlines established for those standards, and (3) require IC elements to update their resources plans to fully implement those standards. The statutory provision builds upon NSM-08, recent policy guidance published by the White House to enhance cybersecurity compliance in the Department of Defense and the IC.
- Ensuring continued support to the victims of anomalous health incidents (“Havana Syndrome”) and maintaining continued oversight over the IC’s investigations into the causes of anomalous health incidents (Section 311).
- Enhancing congressional oversight of IC activities by mandating that the Director of National Intelligence submit an annual report describing actions being taken to address all open recommendations from the Comptroller General of the United States (GAO). GAO is the congressional watchdog that serves as an independent, non-partisan agency that examines how taxpayer dollars are spent and provides Congress with objective, fact-based information to help the government save money and work more efficiently. After several lapses in providing timely responses to GAO, the provision in Section 308 ensures that ODNI is subject to the same reporting requirements as other federal agencies.
- Maintaining strong congressional oversight of IC resources by requiring IC agencies to deliver budget justification materials to its oversight committees no later than 14 days after the President submits the budget request to Congress. Section 309 is intended to address significant delays in the delivery of budget justification materials from the Intelligence Community.