House Homeland Security Committee approves eight emergency communications, security bills

The U.S. House Committee on Homeland Security approved on Wednesday eight security and emergency communication bills.

The committee unanimously passed the Department of Homeland Security Interoperable Communications Act. It also passed an amendment by Rep. Eric Swalwell (D-Calif.) that would provide incentives for countries to report data on lost and stolen travel documents, HSToday reports.

"Today, the committee passed eight bills to further improve the border security, transportation security and emergency communications efforts of the Department of Homeland Security," Rep. Michael McCaul (R-Texas), the chairman of the committee, said, according to HSToday. "I am pleased that the committee approved the U.S. Customs and Border Protection Authorization Act, which provides the proper authorities and guidance to Customs and Border Protection to ensure taxpayers dollars are used effectively and efficiently. It's inexcusable that Congress has never before authorized CBP, and we will spend significant time this year authorizing other key DHS components."

The legislation approved by the committee also seeks to address unaccompanied children crossing the U.S. border with Mexico.

"Children are facing a dangerous journey to be smuggled into the U.S. and the Administration is not adequately prepared to address this crisis," McCaul said, HSToday reports. "This bill requires DHS to provide a thorough report to Congress on this issue, including an investigation into the root cause and the operational impacts of this mass migration of unaccompanied children."

The bills also address other security issues, including the establishment of preclearance facilities.