[Congressional Record: October 1, 2002 (Senate)]
From the Congressional Record Online via GPO Access [wais.access.gpo.gov]
21ST CENTURY DEPARTMENT OF JUSTICE APPROPRIATIONS AUTHORIZATION ACT--
Mr. DASCHLE. Mr. President, I send a cloture motion to the desk.
The PRESIDING OFFICER. The cloture motion having been presented under
rule XXII, the Chair directs the clerk to read the motion.
The senior assistant bill clerk read as follows:
We, the undersigned Senators, in accordance with the
provisions of Rule XXII of the Standing Rules of the Senate,
hereby move to bring to a close the debate on the conference
report to accompany H.R. 2215, the 21 Century Department of
Justice Appropriations Authorization Act.
Harry Reid, Jeff Bingaman, Jean Carnahan, Hillary
Clinton, Thomas Carper, Richard Durbin, Paul Sarbanes,
Daniel Inouye, Bill Nelson of Florida, Jack Reed,
Patrick Leahy, Benjamin Nelson of Nebraska, John
Edwards, Tim Johnson, Joseph Lieberman, Byron Dorgan,
Mr. DASCHLE. Mr. President, I suggest the absence of a quorum.
The PRESIDING OFFICER. The clerk will call the roll.
The senior assistant bill clerk proceeded to call the roll.
Mrs. HUTCHISON. Mr. President, I ask unanimous consent the order for
the quorum call be rescinded.
The PRESIDING OFFICER. Without objection, it is so ordered.
Mrs. HUTCHISON. Mr. President, I want to speak briefly on the
reauthorization conference report that is before the Senate today.
There are many parts of this legislation I want to talk about. One part
that is very important to me is the new judgeships that would be
created in the border areas of our country, including two new district
judgeships in the western district of Texas, and one temporary
judgeship in the eastern district of Texas.
The conference report contains language that Senator Feinstein and I
put forward because of the judicial emergencies that we find in our
States. Largely in the border regions, we have had an onslaught of
caseload that has made it very difficult for our judges to not even
stay even but just to try to handle the most important cases. So we
have been trying to add some judgeships, both in California and in
Texas, to relieve some of this emergency.
The judgeships in the western and eastern districts of Texas have
been declared ``judicial emergencies'' by the nonpartisan Judicial
Conference of the United States. The creation of new judgeships will
certainly bring much needed relief.
Of all the courts in the country that are desperate for judges, the
United States-Mexico border courts have the most critical need.
According to the statistics from last year, the western district of
Texas handles the most criminal cases in the country; last year, 4,434.
Currently, the western district of Texas is facing a criminal
caseload of 1,987 pending cases; that is 2,758 defendants. In El Paso,
884 cases are pending overall--more than any other region in the
district. Each day, more cases are added, overwhelming an already
overburdened western district.
As our war against terrorism is advancing, as well as our war against
drugs, it is even more crucial we have highly qualified judges and law
enforcement officials in charge of our justice system.
Mr. President, I really appreciate the fact that we do have a cloture
motion on this conference report. I hope very much we will be able to
pass this legislation and create these courts. Hopefully, they will be
able to be up and running sometime next year and try to bring justice.
Justice delayed is justice denied in many instances. We would like to
clear out the backlog and let people face trials and either serve their
sentences or, if they are acquitted, of course, allow them to go free.
Right now, they are incarcerated, and it is creating not only a burden
on the court system but on the prison system. Many of our county
prisons and State prisons are overloaded and trying to help with the
backlog, but it is very hard for these counties to justify the costs
when they do not get full reimbursement.
So we would appreciate passing this bill so we could get these
courts. I hope the Senate will act expeditiously on this bill.
I yield the floor and suggest the absence of a quorum.
The PRESIDING OFFICER (Mr. Dayton). The clerk will call the roll.
The senior assistant bill clerk proceeded to call the roll.
Mr. SESSIONS. Mr. President, I ask unanimous consent that the order
for the quorum call be rescinded.
The PRESIDING OFFICER. Without objection, it is so ordered.
Mr. SESSIONS. Mr. President, I wish to speak a few minutes on the
Department of Justice conference report that is before the Senate.
The Department of Justice is one of the great Departments of our
Government. It is one of the oldest, one of the
original Departments. I served in that Department for 15 years. It was
the greatest honor for me. I believe it has worked, and I believe, all
in all, this bill is a healthy bill. I am pleased to support it.
It came out of the Judiciary Committee on which I serve, and we
talked about many of the issues. Hopefully, when the dust settles, the
bill we pass will strengthen justice in America. I am pleased with
There is one provision that came out of this conference committee,
however, with which I am not pleased. It was not in the Senate bill; it
was not in the House bill. It was placed in the conference report
without having been passed by either body, which is against the
tradition of the Senate and the House. This should not be done. It is
normally not done.
That provision deals with automobile dealers and arbitration clauses
they have with automobile manufacturers. The truth is, most automobile
dealers today are pretty sizable entities. They have lawyers. They
negotiate these contracts when they have an agreement with a big
company. It requires arbitration apparently in most of these contracts.
They reject it. They want to alter this right of contract and eliminate
it. I objected to it in committee.
I believe the question of binding arbitration is one that requires a
good deal of thought. I believe pretty strongly that if we are going to
change arbitration law in America to exempt people from binding
arbitration, I am not sure the first place we should start is between
automobile dealers and automobile manufacturers. That seems to me to be
an odd place to start. There was not a lot of thought put into it.
There are disputes and arguments between the dealers and the
manufacturers, and the dealers believe they will have a better chance
in court, if they can try the case at home, in a lawsuit, probably
throwing some claims in that lawsuit. They want to do it that way.
Apparently, most of our colleagues agreed; an overwhelming number of
people supported the amendment. It is now included in the bill.
I say that because I earlier introduced an arbitration bill that
focuses on improving arbitration across the board. It was a broad bill
and had a lot of positive changes in it. I will be introducing today
another, even more comprehensive, bill to deal with arbitration. I will
not go into all the details of it, but I call this bill the Arbitration
Fairness Act of 2002, and it will continue the changes we offered in
the 106th Congress when I introduced the consumer and employee
arbitration bill of rights.
This will be a broader procedure. It will deal with the question of
Federal arbitration. Congress enacted the Federal Arbitration Act in
1925. It has served us well for three-quarters of a century.
Under the act, if parties agree to a contract affecting interstate
commerce that contains a clause requiring arbitration, the clause will
be enforceable in court. That is the fundamental issue with which we
have been dealing.
My State has had a lot of debate about arbitration. It is healthy to
look at what we did 75 years ago. We found there are legitimate
complaints about arbitration. Our act, a bill of rights of protections
for people who are involved in arbitration, I think will take us a step
in the right direction.
It will maintain cost-benefits of arbitration. Many times it is quite
cost-effective to arbitrate, but there are instances in which
arbitration costs more and is more of a headache than perhaps going to
small claims court or other courts.
There have been some concerns that the arbitrators under these
agreements are not independent and the corporation or the larger entity
has too much power in selecting who might arbitrate.
The bill provides the following rights:
No. 1: Notice. Under the bill, an arbitration clause, if it is to be
enforceable, would have to have a heading in large, bold print that
states whether arbitration is binding or optional and identify a source
that the parties may contact for more information and state that a
consumer could opt out and go to small claims court.
In other words, when you have an arbitration, you have to pay the
arbitrators. Both parties have to go. Many States have effective small
claims courts where you file a $25 fee and an independent judge will
hear the case. Sometimes that is better. This would allow an opt-out
for a person who is involved in an arbitration matter if they choose
and if they qualify for the small claims court. That probably is
It would eliminate a lot of the complaints we have heard about over a
small item, say a television or sofa or refrigerator, that could cost
more to arbitrate than the merchandise is worth. This would at least
give that option, so a party could opt out if it chose.
No. 2: The independent selection of arbitrators. The bill would grant
all parties the right to have potential arbitrators disclose relevant
information concerning their business ties and employment. All parties
to the arbitration would have an equal voice in selecting a neutral
This ensures that the large company that sold a consumer product will
not select the arbitrator itself because the consumer with a grievance
will have the right to nominate potential arbitrators, too. As a
result, the final arbitrator selected will have to have the explicit
approval of both parties to the dispute. This means the arbitrator will
be a neutral party with no allegiance to either party. There are some
instances when that has not been the case.
We deal with choice of law. We make clear that parties can be
represented by counsel at their own expense. It guarantees that all
parties will have a fair hearing in a forum that is reasonably
convenient to the consumer or employee to prevent a large company, for
example, from requiring a consumer or an employee or small business
owner to travel across the country to arbitrate a claim.
The bill grants to all parties the right to conduct discovery and
present evidence; to have cross-examination; that there should be a
tape recording or a stenographer to make a record of the hearing, and
that there would be a timely resolution. That is important.
One of the reasons we choose arbitration is for timely resolution.
There have been complaints that these have not been timely and in fact
have been just as long, in some instances longer, as going to court.
Under the bill, the defendant must file an answer within 30 days of
the filing of a complaint. The arbitrator has 90 days to hold a hearing
and must render a decision within 30 days after the hearing. That would
be the maximum time that would be allowed. It would require a written
decision. As to expenses, it grants all parties the right to have an
arbitrator provide for reimbursement of arbitration fees in the
interest of justice; the reduction, deferral, or waiver of arbitration
fees in cases of extreme hardship; and also the small claims opt-out.
This is a Department of Justice bill that I believe has some good
things in it. It has 20 new Federal judges, pretty much selected on a
need all across America. Some States are really in crisis, such as
California and they need some additional district judges. We need
several in Alabama. It has that in there.
It has a body armor bill that Senator Feinstein and I worked on that
says if you deal with such a violent criminal who is involved in a
serious crime, who wears body armor while they are committing that
crime, then the judge is authorized to give a more substantial penalty
where that occurs and make it a separate offense for wearing body armor
during the commission of a felony.
We had an instance in my State, and Senator Feinstein in California,
in which a criminal actually wore body armor and killed a law
enforcement officer, thereby gaining an advantage in weaponry by being
There are some other provisions in the bill that are good. We
strengthen the Coverdell Act that deals with forensic laboratories. In
my view, as a prosecutor for many years, perhaps the greatest single
bottleneck in justice today is a delay that so often occurs in
obtaining scientific analysis of evidence. A prosecutor cannot go
forward with a case involving cocaine, white powder, until some chemist
reports that it is actually cocaine. Most prosecutors probably will not
take it to a grand jury until they have that chemical report.
If there are fingerprints, an analysis is needed. If there is a
weapon involved, the ballistics need to be examined. If there are DNA
issues, DNA is needed. If there has been a rape, the DNA analysis and
blood samples are needed. Those are procedures that are being delayed.
In my State, we saw delays of as much as a year or more in actually
receiving the scientific analysis. On a routine basis, that is
happening around America. It is important we assist in that. The bill
we named after former Senator Paul Coverdell--who was such a wonderful
Member of this body, a bill he worked on before his death--would help
I believe we are moving in the right direction, and I would like to
see the Federal Government take a stronger lead in encouraging the
States to move forward on forensic capabilities.
We spend huge amounts of money on prisons. We spend huge amounts of
money on probation officers. We spend huge amounts of money on
sheriffs' deputies, police officers, prosecutors, judges, and juries,
but we are spending only a pittance on getting our scientific evidence
produced in an honest and effective way. As a result, justice is being
delayed. And justice delayed is justice denied.
Recently, in Alabama, we had probably the most horrendous crime ever.
A man killed six members of one family. The newspaper reported he was
out on bail pending trial. The prosecutor said they were waiting on the
chemical analysis of the drugs he had been arrested with. Had that come
in promptly, had he been indicted, gone to trial, and been in jail, six
people would probably be alive today.
That is occurring around America today. Make no mistake about it, it
is something we need to do to improve. It is primarily a State
function, but this Government does a lot to encourage and help States
do better, and we really ought to step it up in this area.
I yield the floor.
Mr. GRAHAM. Mr. President, I commend Senator Leahy and Senator Hatch
for their hard work on the Department of Justice authorization bill.
This bill will strengthen our Department of Justice and increase our
preparedness against terrorist attacks, prevent crime, and improve our
intellectual property and antitrust laws.
However, I am disappointed that the ecstasy provisions I sponsored in
the Senate version were removed in the conference committee. These
provisions would have directed the National Institute on Drug Abuse,
NIDA, to continue researching and evaluating the effects of ecstasy on
an individual's health and authorized money to the High Intensity Drug
Trafficking Areas, HIDTA, program for combating ecstasy use.
I am concerned that ecstasy has become the ``feel good'' drug of
choice among many of our young people and drug pushers are marketing it
as a ``friendly'' and ``safe'' drug to mostly teenagers and young
adults. But we know this is not true.
Just last week a new study conducted by researchers at John Hopkins
University found that a single use of ecstasy could seriously harm the
brain and put users at risk of damage that mimics Parkinson's disease.
I ask unanimous consent that the following article from Reuters
titled, ``Ecstasy's Brain Drain Possibly Wider Than Thought,'' be
printed in the Congressional Record following my statement.
The PRESIDING OFFICER. Without objection, it is so ordered.
(See exhibit 1.)
Mr. GRAHAM. Mr. President, several recent studies have also revealed
an alarming increase in the availability and abuse of ecstasy across
the United States.
According to the Partnership for Drug Free America's 2001 National
Survey, more teens in America have now experimented with Ecstasy than
cocaine, crack or heroin. Approximately 2.8 million teenagers in
America, roughly one of every 11 teens in the Nation, have now tried
Even the Armed Services have been impacted by this dangerous drug. In
July 2002, 82 marines and soldiers at Camp Lejeune, NC, were convicted
in a military court for either using or distributing ecstasy.
Despite the abundant evidence to the contrary, young people have been
lulled into believing that ecstasy and other designer drugs are safe
ways to get high without risking addiction or physical harm.
As legislators, we have a responsibility to stop the proliferation of
this potentially life threatening drug. I remain firmly committed to
working on legislation to combat this dangerous drug and I appreciate
my colleagues' willingness to work with me to pass this legislation
Ecstasy's Brain Drain Possibly Wider Than Thought
(By Amy Norton)
New York (Reuters Health).--The club drug Ecstasy may
damage a broader range of brain cells than most research has
suggested, according to a new study in monkeys.
Researchers at Johns Hopkins University found that one
round of the drug, designed to simulate what many Ecstasy
users take in a night, was toxic to dopamine-producing cells
in the brain. Dopamine is a brain chemical that helps
regulate mental and emotional functions, as well as movement.
This is the first time Ecstasy has been shown to have such
dopamine effects in primates.
Previous studies in animals and humans had shown the drug
to selectively affect brain cells that carry out the work of
serotonin, a chemical involved in mood, memory and other
vital functions. Both serotonin-cell loss and memory problems
have been found in regular users of Ecstasy, also known as
Similarly, monkeys and baboons in the new study showed
damage to the serotonin system. But the dopamine effects,
which were even more substantial, were ``totally
unexpected,'' lead author Dr. George A. Ricaurte told Reuters
He and his colleagues at the Baltimore, Maryland university
report the findings in the September 27th issue of Science.
According to the researchers, these findings are
particularly concerning because dopamine is vital to
movement, and a loss of dopamine brain cells is known to be
involved in Parkinson's disease (news-web sites) and the
related movement disorder parkinsonism.
Of course, whether the primate findings extend to humans at
all is unknown, Ricaurte pointed out.
``Clearly,'' he said, ``most MDMA users have not developed
Still, the researcher added, if the drug does have dopamine
effects in humans, this raises the possibility that with age
and its accompanying, natural dopamine decline, Ecstasy users
could face a heightened risk of parkinsonism.
Before this study, only mice had been shown to have
dopamine effects after Ecstasy exposure, making mice ``an
enigma'' in the field, Ricaurte said. His team's working
hypothesis, he explained, is that the pattern of MDMA
exposure in this primate study is behind the dopamine damage.
The animals were given three does of the drug at 3-hour
intervals, in an amount and time frame designed to simulate
what often goes on at ``raves''--all-night dance parties
where Ecstasy use is pervasive.
It may be that taking multiple does in a night, known as
``stacking,'' is required for dopamine damage to occur,
according to Ricaurte, but there's no evidence of that yet.
And whether any dopamine-cell loss would be lasting in
humans is also unknown. In this study, primates showed
``profound'' dopamine-cell loss 2 to 8 weeks after Ecstasy
exposure, according to the researchers.
``We were struck by the severity of the dopaminergic
injury, ``Ricaurte said.
To begin to see whether such injury occurs in humans, his
team plans to take brain scans of former Ecstasy users to
look for signs of dopamine depletion.
In a statement released in response to the study, Dr. Glen
R. Hanson, acting director of the US National Institute on
Drug Abuse, said the findings ``are cause for concern and
should serve as warning to those thinking about using
Earlier this month, US health officials reported that the
number of Americans using Ecstasy went up 25% between 2000
Mr. KOHL. Mr. President, I rise today in strong support of the
Department of Justice reauthorization bill. The reauthorization of the
Department of Justice and all of its component parts is long overdue.
In particular, this bill is important because it reauthorizes the
Incentive Grants for Local Delinquency Prevention Program, Title V,
which is the cornerstone of our national juvenile crime prevention
strategy. Senator Leahy deserves special mention for recognizing the
importance of juvenile justice policy and waging a successful fight to
reauthorize many important programs.
Effective prevention programs are critical to any juvenile crime
strategy, and title V is one of the programs that deserve our support.
Let me tell you why. It relies on local communities, who know their
needs better than the Federal Government, to identify solutions
tailored to local problems. Communities qualify for funds only if they
establish local boards to design long-term strategies for combating
juvenile crime, and if they match Federal funds with a 50-percent local
And, title V works. Participating communities, from 49 States,
believe in this program so much that, according to the GAO, they've
matched Federal money almost dollar-for-dollar, far more than the 50-
percent match this program requires. In addition, studies confirm that
many of these programs have reduced crime in cities across the Nation.
A program that can motivate communities both to cooperate in improving
safety and to collect the resources to do so is one that really works.
I would also like to commend the conferees for including in the final
bill important provisions from S. 1165, the Biden-Kohl-Reed-Landrieu-
Daschle Juvenile Crime Prevention and Control Act. Senator Biden has
always been a leader on juvenile crime control issues and it has been a
pleasure to work with him. This bill understands the importance of
federal assistance to our communities in the area of juvenile crime
control and delinquency prevention programs.
Finally, on a different issues, I am pleased that the bill makes
several needed technical corrections to the Nation's antitrust laws. It
will also eliminate unnecessary and unused antitrust review authority
placed in the Nuclear Regulatory Commission, and will therefore further
our goal to consolidate antitrust oversight.
Again, I applaud the Senate's consideration and passage of this
Mrs. CARNAHAN. Mr. President, I rise today to express my support for
passage of the 21st Century Department of Justice Appropriations
Authorization Act, H.R. 2215. I applaud Chairman Leahy, who along with
his staff, has put in long hours to complete this bill. It is my hope
that the conference report, which has passed the House by a vote of
400-4, will pass the Senate today.
I am pleased that H.R. 2215 includes the Law Enforcement Tribute Act,
a bill I introduced. The Law Enforcement Tribute Act authorizes $3
million in grant funding to States, localities, and Indian tribes to
provide for permanent tributes to the police officers and firefighters
who have been injured or killed in the line of duty. I have been
contacted by numerous law enforcement and public safety organizations
that have voiced their support for the bill, including the National
Association of Police Organizations, the International Association of
Fire Fighters, the Missouri Fraternal Order of Police, and the Missouri
Police Chiefs Association. These organizations believe, as I do, that
it is appropriate for our national Government to help local communities
pay tribute to those who have made the ultimate sacrifice.
H.R. 2215 also authorizes language for many programs of critical
importance to our nation's security. It authorizes funds to enhance
border security and increase domestic preparedness. The bill includes
important provisions to strengthen law enforcement, such as FBI reform,
and better witness protection. H.R. 2215 improves state and local
forensic science capabilities, and implements appropriate sentencing
enhancements when defendants use body armor in crimes of violence or
drug trafficking crimes.
H.R. 2215 establishes a permanent, separate, and independent Violence
Against Women Office within the Justice Department, similar to S. 570,
which I cosponsored. It also authorizes $30 million for the Crime-Free
Rural States program to make grants to rural States to help local
communities prevent and reduce crime, violence, and substance abuse.
H.R. 2215 reauthorizes the Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention
Act, and preserves the core protections that ensure juvenile
delinquents are dealt with firmly but fairly.
Support for these law enforcement programs comes at an important
time. Crime rates, which had fallen to record lows during the 1990's,
have begun to creep up, and our Federal, State, and local law
enforcement agencies have had new and important responsibilities placed
on them following the September 11 attacks. So, I am extremely pleased
that we are expressing our support and providing resources that will
make a real difference in increasing the personal security of all
Mr. KENNEDY. Mr. President, I strongly support this bipartisan
legislation. The fact that it is now before the Senate for a final vote
is primarily due to the skill, patience, and determination of our
colleagues on the Senate and House Judiciary Committees, especially
Chairman Leahy, Senator Hatch, Chairman Sensenbrenner, and Congressman
Conyers, and I commend them for their leadership. They have guided our
Senate-House conference with a steady hand and have kept the process
moving, even when the prospect of the bill's passage appeared in doubt.
As a result, we are about to complete action on a genuinely
comprehensive authorization bill for the Department of Justice--
something Congress has not managed to enact since 1979.
The need for this legislation is urgent. The terrorist attacks of
September 11 made clear that we must strengthen the ability of our
justice system to deal with the threat of terrorism. Since September
11, Congress has enacted laws giving law enforcement and intelligence
officials enhanced powers to investigate and prosecute terrorism,
improving the security of our borders, and strengthening our defenses
On May 14, President Bush signed the Enhanced Border Security and
Visa Entry Reform Act. The Department of Justice Authorization Act
builds on that bipartisan legislation by authorizing over $4 billion
for the administration and enforcement of our immigration laws--$3.2
billion of which will be allotted to the Border Patrol. The act
authorizes funding for the Drug Enforcement Administration to conduct
police training in South and Central Asia, and improves our
implementation of the International Convention for the Suppression of
Financing Terrorism. These will be important tools in our effort to win
the war on terrorism and protect the country for the future.
Here at home, the Department of Justice Authorization Act achieves
many important goals: It implements needed reforms of the Federal
Bureau of Investigation, including a long-overdue plan to improve the
Bureau's outdated computer system. It also provides special danger pay
to F.B.I. agents who perform hazardous duties outside the United
The bill closes a number of loopholes in our criminal code, and
increases the protection of witnesses who report criminal activity. It
increases sentences for defendants who use body armor during the
commission of violent crimes. It reauthorizes the State assistance
program to help States deal more effectively with the problem of
criminal aliens. It authorizes funding for the Boys and Girls Clubs of
America, including the creation of 1,200 new clubs across the Nation to
improve the lives of at-risk youth. It reauthorizes the Juvenile
Justice and Delinquency Prevention Act, while preserving the core
protections to see that juvenile delinquents are treated fairly and
It authorizes a number of important drug treatment and prevention
programs, including programs to reduce drug dependency among prisoners
and to support State and local drug courts. These cost-effective
programs will reduce the demand for drugs in America, which President
Bush has called ``the most effective way to reduce the supply of drugs
I am also pleased that this legislation contains a provision to
extend H-1B visa status for persons with pending labor certification
applications. Unfortunately, this application process now takes years
to complete, and is undermining the ability of American companies to
keep qualified workers.
The Department of Justice Authorization Act also reauthorizes the
Police Corps, a program that I have strongly supported since its
creation in 1994, to improve the quality of police training, develop
strong community-police partnerships, and produce officers who will
take future positions of leadership and responsibility in law
The Department of Justice Authorization Act is an impressive
bipartisan achievement that will strengthen our justice system and our
defenses against terrorism. I commend all the conferees for their
The House of Representatives overwhelmingly adopted this legislation
last week by a vote of 400 to 4, and I urge the Senate to support it
Mr. BIDEN. Mr. President, I rise in support of the conference report
on H.R. 2215.
With approval of this conference report, we are one step closer to
authorizing the operations of the Justice Department for the first time
since 1979. I commend the conferees, and particularly the Chairman of
the Judiciary Committee Senator Leahy, for the work they have done on
this measure. It will improve the operations of the Department, and in
so doing it will strengthen our efforts against terrorism, help protect
our borders, and prevent crime and drug abuse.
I would like to highlight a few of the provisions of the conference
report that I think are particularly important, beginning with the
establishment of the Violence Against Women Office. Today is the first
day of Domestic Violence Awareness Month, and it is a fitting tribute
to this special month that H.R. 2215 provides this Senate with an
opportunity to make our voices heard loud and clear on the importance
of continuing the fight against domestic violence, sexual assault and
A key tool in that fight is the permanent and independent Violence
Against Women Office, a proposal I first introduced in the Senate in
March, 2001, and now established in the Conference Report. This
provision means that the Office will be removed from its current
location inside the Office of Justice Programs, and become its own
free-standing entity. The bill also sets out the jurisdiction of the
Office and the extensive duties and functions of the Director. It also
requires that the Director be nominated by the President, confirmed by
the Senate and report directly to the Attorney General.
With this bill, the Violence Against Women Office is set out in black
and white. Its leadership and agenda cannot be pushed to the sidelines
nor marginalized as one of many offices in a large bureau. Instead,
this law gives the Violence Against Women Office the foundation and
roots it deserves. It will be its own, separate and distinct office
within the Department of Justice with a Director who answers only to
the Attorney General. This statutory authority is long overdue.
Since we passed my Violence Against Women Act in 1994, the Office has
been charged with disbursing billions of dollars to states, localities,
tribal governments and private organizations to improve the
investigation and prosecution of crimes of domestic violence, sexual
assault and stalking; to train prosecutors, law enforcement and judges
on the unique aspects of cases involving violence against women; and to
offer needed services to victims and their families.
The Violence Against Women Office also handles and coordinates the
Department of Justice's legal and policy issues regarding violence
against women, everything from enforcing protection orders across State
lines to issuing annual reports on stalking. The Office also works with
other Federal agencies, such as the Department of Housing and Urban
Development, and the Immigration and Naturalization Service about
Federal policies, programs, statutes, and regulations that impact
violence against women.
It is a tall order for the Violence Against Women Office, and to
carry out these critical mandates, we must ensure that the Office has
the sufficient visibility, prestige and authority. An independent
office will provide just that platform. An independent office will be
insulated from any attempts to undo the great work it has historically
accomplished. A director nominated by the President and confirmed by
the Senate will have the credibility and the bully pulpit to travel
this country and get local people to the table. Let me be clear, to
meet its mandate, the Violence Against Women Office should not, must
not, and cannot be buried within a grant-making bureaucracy.
Since the Violence Against Women Act passed in 1994, we have changed
the way folks think about domestic violence and sexual assault. We have
hauled these matters out from the closet, and called them their proper
names, ``crimes'', crimes that warrant investigation and prosecution
with crime victims who desperately need our help. Across the country
there are signs that the law is working. Statistics released by the
Justice Department last month indicate that rape and sexual assault
crimes dropped 8 percent from 2000 to 2001. The New York City Police
Department is beginning to use digital cameras to capture the injuries
of domestic violence which has drastically improved the way these cases
are prosecuted. One of the first trials for cyberstalking is underway
In my home State of Delaware, the Violence Against Women Act and the
leadership of the Office have made an enormous impact. Just last week,
the STOP grant program, one of several grant programs in the Violence
Against Women Act, awarded $85,000 to the Sexual Assault Network of
Delaware so that it can formalize community responses to sexual assault
crimes and victims. Since 1995, Delaware has received more than 30
grants totaling almost $8.5 million dollars, all of it designated to
combat violence against women.
But sadly, we are not done.
The National Violence Against Women Survey reports that nearly 25
percent of women sometime in their lives has been raped or physically
assaulted by an intimate partner.
One out of 5 adolescent girls in America becomes victims of physical
or sexual abuse in a dating relationship according to a report issued
by the Journal of American Medicine.
We still need Domestic Violence Awareness Month this October. And we
need the leadership of an independent and separate Violence Against
Women Office. I want to thank the Senate conferees, Senators Leahy,
Hatch and Kennedy, who worked long and hard to get an ensure that the
Violence Against Women Office Act was included in the compromise
Conference Report, and I thank Senators DeWine, Levin, Specter,
Carnahan, Hutchison, Miller, Collins and Carper who originally joined
me when I first introduced a bill for an independent office in March,
2001. And finally, in this first week of Domestic Violence Awareness
Month, it is right to give thanks for the tireless efforts of advocates
and service providers who support the women and children victimized by
domestic violence and sexual assault.
The next point I would like to highlight is that the Conference
Report reauthorizes the Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention Act
of 1974. Congress has tried for over six years to get this job done and
as the former Chairman of the Judiciary Committee and the current
Chairman of the Subcommittee on Crime and Drugs I am extremely
gratified we were able to renew the juvenile justice law here.
Last year, Senators Kohl and Reed and I introduced S. 1165, the
Juvenile Crime Prevention and Control Act. That bill reauthorized the
1974 Act, authorized the Juvenile Accountability Incentive Block Grant
for the first time, and proposed to close the gun show loophole. S.
1165 contained provisions similar to H.R. 1900 and H.R. 863, and
provisions complimentary to Senator Leahy's S. 1174. Major provisions
of H.R. 1900, H.R. 863, S. 1165 and S. 1174 are included in this
Conference Report today. Provisions from S. 1165 included in the
Conference Report will ensure that youth in the juvenile justice system
are protected from abuse and assault by adults in adult jails. The
Conference Report ensures we will remain focused on preventing juvenile
crime before it occurs: it reauthorizes Title V, the Justice
Department's juvenile crime prevention grant program. Title V resources
have been critical in Delaware to sponsor programs to reduce school
violence, provide transition counseling to students returning to their
local school from alternative school placement, reduce suspensions,
expulsions, truancy, and teen pregnancy, and provide services to the
children of incarcerated adult offenders. I compliment Senator Kohl for
his steadfast devotion to Title V and for ensuring it is continued
through this Conference Report.
The Conference Report adopts provisions of S. 1165 that authorize the
Juvenile Accountability Incentive Block Grant. This program was created
in the 1998 Commerce Justice State appropriations bill but has never
been authorized. It provides resources to States and units of local
government so programs can be developed to promote greater
accountability in the juvenile justice system. The Conference Report
also expands the purposes to which JAIBG funds can be put, for the
first time, resources are provided to support proven strategies for
rehabilitating adjudicated youth and families
as well as for reducing juvenile re-offense rates. In years past, my
state has used JAIBG funds to establish a Serious Juvenile Offender
program through the Delaware Division of Youth Rehabilitative Services,
which provides an immediate secure placement of violent youth offenders
who have violated the terms of their probation. Delaware has also used
these funds to expand diversionary programs such as Teen Court and Drug
Court, thus reducing the time between arrest and disposition of
juvenile offenders, and to add psycho-forensic evaluators in the
Delaware Office of the Public Defender to identify and address mental
illness as a cause for delinquent conduct. I compliment the conferees
for including provisions drawn from S. 1165 and H.R. 863 in this
I would also like to highlight the provisions in the Conference
Report that are designed to strengthen Boys and Girls Clubs of America.
Provisions here will allow for the establishment of 1,200 additional
Clubs across the Nation. This will bring the number of Clubs to nearly
4,000, serving nearly 6 million young people across America.
Finally, this Conference Report also incorporates much of S. 304, the
Drug Abuse Education Prevention and Treatment Act, a bill which
Senators Hatch, Leahy and I introduced together. While I am
disappointed that many of the bill's drug treatment provisions were
dropped in conference, I promise to fight for those provisions again in
the next Congress.
I want to draw attention to three of the important provisions from S.
304 that were included in the conference report to address addiction
among those in the criminal justice system and make sure that we are
doing all we can to keep them from reoffending. Specifically, the
conference report reauthorizes two key programs created in the 1994
Biden Crime Law to deal with drug addicts in the criminal justice
system, prison-based drug treatment and the drug court program, and
includes my ``Offender Reentry and Community Safety Act of 2001,''
which creates demonstration programs to oversee the reintegration of
high-risk, high-need offenders into society upon release.
Let me address prison-based drug treatment first. Providing prison-
based treatment is not ``soft''; it is smart crime prevention policy as
the Key and Crest programs in my home state of Delaware have shown. If
we do not treat addicted offenders before they are released, they will
return to our streets with the same addiction problem that got them in
trouble in the first place, and they are likely to re-offend. This is
not my opinion; it is fact. More than 80 percent of inmates with five
or more prior convictions have been habitual drug users, compared to
approximately 40 percent of first-time offenders. Prison-based
treatment programs are a good investment and an important crime
And so are drug courts. The Federal Government has funded drug courts
since 1994 as a cost-effective, innovative way to deal with non-violent
offenders who need drug treatment. Rather than just churning people
through the revolving door of the criminal justice system, drug courts
help these folks get their acts together so they won't be back. When
they graduate from drug court programs they are clean and sober and
more prepared to participate in society. In order to graduate, they are
required to finish high school or obtain a GED, hold down a job, and
keep up with financial obligations, including drug-court fees and
Drug courts have been proven effective at keeping offenders with
little previous treatment history in treatment, providing closer
supervision than other community programs to which the offenders could
be assigned, reducing crime and being cost-effective.
Just as treating addicted offenders when they are in the criminal
justice system is smart crime policy, so is making sure that high-risk,
high-need offenders get reintegrated into society upon release. These
individuals have served their prison sentences, but they pose the
greatest risk of re-offending because they lack the education, job
skills, stable family or living arrangements, and the substance abuse
treatment and other mental and medical health services they need to
successfully re-integrate into society. The demonstration reentry
programs created in this conference report will help supervise high-
risk people when they are released from jail and make sure they get the
services and other support that they need so they won't go back to a
life of crime and can be productive members of our society.
Once again, I thank the conferees, Senators Leahy, Hatch and Kennedy
and their staff, including Bruce Cohen, Beryl Howell, Ed Pagano, Tim
Lynch, Steve Dettelbach, Makan Delrahim, Leah Belaire, Wan Kim, Melody
Barnes and Robin Toone, for their unfailing support for these
provisions, and for their hard work in bringing the Conference Report
to the floor.
Violence Against Women Office
Mr. LEAHY. As you stated earlier, the pending Justice reauthorization
conference report establishes an independent Violence Against Women
Office, and isn't it true that this Office will be an autonomous and
separate office within the Department of Justice and no longer
underneath the jurisdiction of the Office of Justice Programs?
Mr. BIDEN. That is absolutely correct. Rather than be one of many
offices subsumed in a larger bureau or office, the Violence Against
Women Officer will now be its own, separate and distinct entity within
the Department of Justice. This provision means that the Office will be
removed from its current location in the Office of Justice Programs,
and become its own free-standing entity. This is a non-negotiable and
unambiguous provision of the act. What this means is that the
leadership and the agenda of the Office cannot be pushed to the
sidelines or marginalized. You and I both know that ending violence
against women is too important of an issue to be relegated to a back
Mr. LEAHY. I couldn't agree with you more, Senator. I am particularly
pleased that the Violence Against Women Office will now be led by a
Director nominated by the President and confirmed by the Senate. How
will this provision affect our nation's fight to end domestic violence
and sexual assault?
Mr. BIDEN. A director who is nominated by the President and confirmed
by the Senate will have the stature, credibility and authority
necessary to spearhead the efforts to end violence against women. In
practical terms, a director within this sort of clout will attract the
attention of key Congressional leaders, will be able to travel the
country and bring state leaders to the table for local initiatives, and
will be able to command the nation's bully pulpit on these issues.
Another key provision in the statute creating the Violence Against
Women Office is the explicit instruction that the Director report
directly to the Attorney General. Would the Senator agree?
Mr. LEAHY. Yes, the statute is unequivocal. The director shall report
directly to the Attorney General--do not pass go, do not get out of
jail free. The law is clear that the director is not to report to
various deputies or assistants, but rather straight to the Attorney
General. That kind of unfettered access to the Attorney General will
ensure that issues of violence against women remain in the forefront,
and part of the decision-making and policy-development done by those at
the highest levels of government, isn't that so?
Mr. BIDEN: That is right. As the former Director of the Violence
Against Women Office said: ``There is a world of difference between
full participation in the highest levels of decision-making and being
buried in a satellite grant office in the Department.'' When the
director is out of the leadership circle and placed in a satellite
office, the Violence Against Women Office's involvement in activities
decrease; for example, it is no longer involved in educating U.S.
Attorneys about their role in local communities' efforts to stop
violence or it is no longer involved in deciding whether to bring or
appeal specific cases. The new Violence Against Women Office Act will
be ensure that the Director has the access he or she needs to fully
participate--the fight to end violence against women deserves no less.
I thank the Senator for his efforts as our Judiciary Committee
Chairman and as a conferee to the Justice Reauthorization Act in moving
this important act forward.
Mr. ENZI. Mr. President, I rise in support of the Conference Report
the U.S. Department of Justice Reauthorization. We are debating
legislation that overwhelmingly passed the House last Thursday on a
vote of 400-4. It is my hope that it will pass the Senate with an
equally strong majority.
I am speaking in support of legislation included in the conference
report that protects the rights of motor vehicle dealers, many of which
are small businesses, under State law. The provision is identical in
substance to Senators Hatch and Feingold's bill, S. 1140, which has
bipartisan support of 64 cosponsors. I ask my colleagues to pass this
legislation and restore desperately needed rights to small businesses
throughout the nation.
S. 1140 is necessary to restore fairness for automobile dealers by
preserving their state rights in dispute resolution with manufacturers
under motor vehicle dealer contracts. All 50 States, including Wyoming,
have enacted laws to regulate the relationship between motor vehicle
dealers and manufacturers and curb unfair manufacturer practices. These
laws are necessary to protect auto dealers since they must sign
contracts with the much larger manufacturers to sell the product. A
Supreme Court decision, however, allows manufacturers to skirt these
State laws by including mandatory binding arbitration in their dealer
Congress never intended to strip the State's role in regulating the
motor vehicle dealer franchise relationship, but because of the Supreme
Court interpretation, states cannot prohibit manufacturers from forcing
dealers to waive their state rights and forums. Dealers must sign
``take-it-or-leave it contracts'' drafted by the manufacturer to stay
in business, and are vulnerable to manufacturer abuses of power. Since
States cannot remedy this problem, Federal legislation is necessary to
restore dealers' rights.
Specifically, the legislation included in the conference report
States that whenever a motor vehicle franchise contract provides for
the use of arbitration to resolve a contractual controversy,
arbitration may be used to settle the controversy only if both parties
consent in writing after the controversy arises. It also requires the
arbitrator to provide the parties with a written explanation of the
factual and legal basis for the award.
The arbitration language in the conference report before us is
supported by Wyoming automobile and truck dealers and dealers
throughout the country because it would merely restore State law. It is
consistent with Wyoming law, which does not allow a manufacturer to
force a dealer to prospectively waive rights and remedies under State
law. I urge my colleagues to pass this legislation and protect our
States' interest in regulating the auto dealer/manufacturer
The PRESIDING OFFICER. The Senator from Nevada.
Mr. REID. I suggest the absence of a quorum.
The PRESIDING OFFICER. The clerk will call the roll.
The assistant legislative clerk proceeded to call the roll.
Mr. REID. Mr. President, I ask unanimous consent that the order for
the quorum call be rescinded.
The PRESIDING OFFICER. Without objection, it is so ordered.
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