Thanks to C-SPAN and mainstream news, we have a pretty good idea of what’s going on in Congress. But legislation isn’t the only game in town. So here are a few of the low-drama activities carried out by the Executive Branch. The Un(der)reported News Weekend Edition presents a few stories from our executive agencies for some perspective on this administration’s projects and priorities.
USDA to Sponsor Web-Based Nutrition Gaming Contest in Support of the President’s Open Government Initiative
“The Innovations for Healthy Kids Challenge highlights the Obama Administration’s commitment to combating childhood obesity and improving the nutritional health of America’s youth,” said Vilsack. “We are excited to spur innovation by making it easier for high-tech companies and individuals to identify collaborative, entrepreneurial opportunities. Those who participate in this challenge will be important partners in helping our kids make smarter choices about the foods they eat.”
Families Can See Off, Greet Troops at Airport Gates
“TSA permits the airlines to offer a gate pass to family members of arriving or departing U.S. servicemembers,” Greg Soule said. “So, family members who want to accompany a … servicemember being deployed to the boarding gate, or greet them [as they return] from deployment at the arrival gate may receive passes to enter the secure area of the airport.”
Spouse Describes Impact of Post-traumatic Stress
The major left in February 2005, and the soldiers did their mission, Sheri said. “Although Jeff says to this day, ‘I don’t know what that mission was, other than riding around and getting blown up and shot at.’ This really wore on him a lot while deployed, she said.
U.S., Russia Make Progress on Nuclear Reduction Agreement
Negotiations have proceeded quietly in Switzerland under tight secrecy, according to reports. But an administration official this week said the two sides are making progress on reaching an agreement.
DOE Launches New Website to Bring Energy Technology Information to the Public
“This information platform will allow people across the globe to benefit from the Department of Energy’s clean energy data and technical resources,” said Secretary Chu. “The true potential of this tool will grow with the public’s participation – as they add new data and share their expertise – to ensure that all communities have access to the information they need to broadly deploy the clean energy resources of the future.”
Medicare Expands List of Covered Preventive Services to Include HIV Screening Tests
The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) today announced its final decision to cover Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV) infection screening for Medicare beneficiaries who are at increased risk for the infection, including women who are pregnant and Medicare beneficiaries of any age who voluntarily request the service. The decision is effective immediately.
Secretary Napolitano Announces the Creation of New Center to Ensure the Safety of Imported Goods
Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Secretary Janet Napolitano today announced the creation of the Import Safety Commercial Targeting and Analysis Center (CTAC)—a new U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) facility designed to streamline and enhance federal efforts to address import safety issues.
HUD Secretary announces disaster assistance for Louisiana storm victims
This is KATRINA aid, for crying out loud — my comment. I wish the press would do its job in keeping up with the continued plight of Katrina victims. Here’s one article about the new policy from Texas, of all places: More housing to become available
Largest Environmental Bankruptcy in U.S. History Will Result in Payment of $1.79 Billion Towards Environmental Cleanup & Restoration
As a result of the largest environmental bankruptcy in U.S. history, $1.79 billion has been paid to fund environmental cleanup and restoration under a bankruptcy reorganization of American Smelting and Refining Company LLC (ASARCO), the Justice Department, Environmental Protection Agency, Department of the Interior and Department of Agriculture announced today.
Member of the Cherokee Nation Pleads Guilty to Selling Bear Gall Bladders
The conviction arose from a three-year undercover anti-poaching investigation, called Operation Botanical, into the unlawful collection, purchase, sale and transportation of ginseng and bear parts within and along the southern Appalachians.
United States Transfers One Guantanamo Bay Detainee to Kuwait
Fouad Mahmoud al-Rabiah, a Kuwaiti national, has been transferred from the detention facility at Guantanamo Bay to the control of the government of Kuwait.
U.S. President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief Launches Five-Year Strategy Annexes
The annex on “PEPFAR and the Global Context of HIV” considers America’s commitment to HIV/AIDS in the broader global context. In the coming years, PEPFAR will work with partner country governments, bilateral partners, multilateral partners, and others to mount a true global response to the HIV/AIDS pandemic.
Salazar Announces $46.5 Million in Grants to States and Territories for Historic Preservation
Secretary of the Interior Ken Salazar announced today that the National Park Service is awarding $46.5 million in historic preservation grants to 59 states and U.S. territories.
ASARCO Settlement Provides $194 Million for Federal, State and Tribal Wildlife and Habitat Resource Restoration
“Through this historic settlement, the American public is compensated for the damage and loss of natural resources resulting from ASARCO’s past mining, smelting and refining operations,” Secretary Salazar said. “Were it not for this agreement, these injured resources would either remain impaired for future generations or require taxpayer expenditures to achieve environmental restoration.”
Secretary Salazar Announces Initiative to Protect Grand Canyon Resources While Meeting Water Needs
The Department of the Interior will undertake an important experimental initiative to improve the management of Glen Canyon Dam and the Colorado River as it flows through Grand Canyon National Park, Secretary of the Interior Ken Salazar announced today during the Colorado River Water Users Association conference.
New Science Estimates Carbon Storage Potential of U.S. Lands
The first phase of a groundbreaking national assessment estimates that U.S. forests and soils could remove additional quantities of carbon dioxide (CO2) from the atmosphere as a means to mitigate climate change.