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Search Senator Leahy’s press releases, floor statements, and Committee speeches by date or by subject.

09.16.10

New Bipartisan, Bicameral Bills Seek To Spotlight And Curb Inhumane Conditions In Foreign Prisons

(THURSDAY, Sept. 16) - Senators Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) and Sam Brownback (R-Kansas) Thursday introduced, with the support of a broad spectrum of faith-based, human rights, and justice reform organizations, a bill intended as a catalyst to curb inhumane conditions in foreign prisons. Identical bipartisan legislation to their Foreign Prison Conditions Improvement Act of 2010 was also introduced Thursday in the House by Representatives Bill Delahunt (D-Mass.) and Joe Pitts (R-Pa.). The bills call… Continue Reading


09.16.10

Statement of Senator Patrick Leahy On The Legacy Of Agent Orange

Madam President, during the Vietnam War more than 20 million gallons of herbicide known as Agent Orange, much of it containing the highly toxic chemical dioxin, were stored, mixed, handled, and sprayed by U.S. airplanes over millions of acres of forest and farmland in Vietnam. Since then, dioxin has been linked by the U.S. Institutes of Medicine to various cancers and other debilitating diseases, as well as birth defects. The International Agency for Research on Cancer and the National Institute… Continue Reading


09.16.10

Senate Passes Long-Stalled Small Business Jobs Bill

(THURSDAY, Sept. 16) - In a vote of 61 to 38, the U.S. Senate Thursday approved a small business jobs bill that will boost commercial lending and provide tax relief to small businesses in Vermont and nationwide. Senate supporters of the bill, including Senator Patrick Leahy (D) and Senator Bernie Sanders (I) have had to overcome a months-long obstacle course and a Republican filibuster to get the bill to Thursday's decisive up-or-down Senate vote. The House is expected soon to pass the Senat… Continue Reading


09.16.10

Leahy, Collins Introduce Bill To Aid Veteran Groups

(Thursday, Sept. 16, 2010) - Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) and Senator Susan Collins (R-Maine) introduced legislation Thursday to include veterans organizations among the groups eligible to receive surplus property donations from the federal government. The General Services Administration (GSA) currently oversees the distribution of surplus property to eligible organizations, such as medical institutions, providers of assistance to the homeless, universities, and childcare facilities. This pr… Continue Reading


09.16.10

Senate Judiciary Committee Approves Bill To Repeal SEC FOIA Exemptions

(Thursday, Sept. 16, 2010) - The Senate Judiciary Committee Thursday unanimously approved bipartisan legislation to repeal exemptions to the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) for the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) that were enacted as part of the Wall Street reform bill, which was signed into law in July. The legislation is sponsored by Committee Chairman Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.), and Committee members Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa), John Cornyn (R-Texas), and Ted Kaufman (D-Del.). The legisla… Continue Reading


09.16.10

Leahy Applauds DISH Network Announcment Of Local TV Service In Bennington, Windham

THURSDAY, Sept. 16 - Prompted by legislation authored by Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.), DISH Network announced Thursday that it has launched its service to provide customers in Bennington and Windham counties with access to Vermont broadcast stations by satellite. "I am pleased that DISH Network has announced that it will begin providing Vermont broadcast stations to its customers in southern Vermont," said Leahy. "I worked hard to ensure that DISH Network was granted this authority when Congr… Continue Reading


09.16.10

Leahy, Sanders, Welch Announce Report Detailing Recovery Act Energy Investments In Vermont

(THURSDAY, Sept. 16) - Senator Patrick Leahy (D), Senator Bernie Sanders (I), and Congressman Peter Welch (D) on Thursday announced a new report detailing the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act's impact on Vermont's clean energy economy. The report, compiled by the Department of Energy, outlines the nearly $140 million worth of ARRA projects the state has benefited from, including local energy efficiency grants, statewide implementation of smart grid technologies and investments in energy-r… Continue Reading


09.15.10

Bipartisan Group Of Senators Urge Action On Patent Reform Legislation

(Wednesday, Sept. 15, 2010) - A bipartisan group of 25 Senators Wednesday sent a letter to Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) urging him to schedule a vote on the bipartisan Patent Reform Act. The legislation will make the first reforms to the nation's patent laws in more than 55 years, and will update the patent system to improve patent quality and increase certainty among parties in litigation. Leading signatories to the letter include Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Patrick Leah… Continue Reading


09.15.10

Comment Of Senator Patrick Leahy On New SEC Guidance Interpreting The FOIA Exemptions In Wall Street Reform Bill

"While I commend the Commission for taking steps this week to clarify how it will interpret these new FOIA exemptions, I remain troubled by the Commission's attempts in recent weeks to retroactively apply these exemptions to pending FOIA matters, and by the Commission's past statements that these exemptions would shield all examination information from public scrutiny. Given the great need to restore transparency and public confidence in our financial system, I believe that corrective legislatio… Continue Reading


09.15.10

Vermont Farmer Testifies Before Senate Panel, On Organics - Live Webcast Information

Today's Senate Agriculture Committee hearing on Organics will be webcast starting at 10 a.m. To access the live webcast, go to the Senate Agriculture Committee's main site at http://ag.senate.gov/site/index.html and then click the "Live Webcast" link at the bottom of the home page. Or, go directly to http://ag.senate.gov/site/webcast.html . The webcast will stream in real time (a short delay may be expected depending on internet connection speed) and can easily be viewed on any computer with … Continue Reading


09.14.10

Leahy, Sanders, Welch Commend Administration's Prompt Handling Of $19 Million In Emergency Education Aid To Vermont

(TUESDAY, Sept. 14) - U.S. Education Secretary Arne Duncan Tuesday night announced that Vermont is set to receive $19 million in emergency education funds that were passed by Congress in August. The new law is intended to save tens of thousands of teaching jobs in America's classrooms and to boost Medicaid payments to states. The measure, supported by Senator Patrick Leahy (D), Senator Bernie Sanders (I), and Congressman Peter Welch (D), also set aside about $37 million for state-run Medicaid h… Continue Reading


09.14.10

Vermont Receives $1.47 Million In Federal Grants To Help Crime Victims

(Tuesday, Sept. 14) - Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) announced Tuesday that Vermont has been awarded more than $1.47 million in federal grants to help victims of crime. The grants come from the Crime Victims Fund, the primary source of federal financial aid for crime victims, and are administered through the U.S. Department of Justice. "The need for victim assistance and compensation has grown over the years, and the Crime Victims Fund has been a mainstay for crime victims in states like Vermon… Continue Reading


09.14.10

Senate Breaks Months-Long Filibuster On Small Business Jobs Bill

(Sept. 14) - The U.S. Senate Tuesday narrowly broke a months-long Republican filibuster by voting 61-37 to advance a small business jobs bill that will boost commercial lending and provide tax relief to small businesses in Vermont and nationwide. U.S. Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.), who voted in favor of the bill, expects the Senate to give final approval to the bill on Thursday. The Small Business Job Creation Act modernizes the application process for U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA)… Continue Reading


09.13.10

Leahy Again Calls For Votes On Long-Pending Judicial Nominations

(Monday, September 13, 2010) - Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) Monday afternoon spoke on the Senate floor, urging prompt action on more judicial nominations that have been reported by the Judiciary Committee. The Senate confirmed the nomination of Jane Stranch of Tennessee to fill a vacancy on the Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals in a bipartisan vote of 71-21. Her nomination languished on the Senate's calendar since being reported by a bipartisan majority of the Judici… Continue Reading


09.13.10

Comment Of Senator Patrick Leahy On The FBI Release Of Crime Statistics For 2009

"Many feared that the current economic crisis would contribute to large-scale increases in crime. Instead, according to the FBI's crime statistics for 2009, last year saw more than a five percent decrease in violent crime nationwide. Vermont also saw a significant decrease in violent crime. State and local law enforcement officials in Vermont deserve our thanks for their relentless work to reduce crime on our streets and in our neighborhoods. "Renewed attention by Congress and by the Obama a… Continue Reading


09.13.10

Leahy Introduces Food Safety Accountability Act

(Monday, September 13, 2010) - Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) today introduced legislation to hold violators of food safety standards accountable for their crimes. The legislation follows a bill introduced by Leahy before the August recess, and will strengthen criminal penalties for food safety violators. The Food Safety Accountability Act, introduced Monday, creates a new criminal offense in the criminal code for any individual or corporation that knowingly distributes tainted food products, … Continue Reading


09.13.10

Vermont Congressional Delegation Hails Energy Grant For Barre-Based Company

, September 13 - The U.S. Department of Energy awarded $620,000 to Northern Power Systems of Barre, Vt., to help boost the speed and scale of midsize wind turbine technology, Vermont's congressional delegation announced today. Sens. Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) and Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) and Rep. Peter Welch (D-Vt.) said the grant will accelerate the development of wind turbines manufactured in the United States. The delegation had urged U.S. Department of Energy Secretary Steven Chu to support the p… Continue Reading


09.08.10

Leahy Says Obama’s Plan For R&D Tax Credit Would Mean Jobs In Vermont

MONTPELIER, Vt. (WEDNESDAY, Sept. 8) - U.S. Sen. Patrick Leahy and members of Vermont's business community praised President Barack Obama's call Wednesday to renew, expand, simplify and make permanent the federal research and development tax credit. Leahy said the credit, which allows businesses to write off portions of their revenues spent on research, would help Vermont businesses put people back to work. "This is a sensible and fiscally responsible way to create jobs now, with the research… Continue Reading


09.05.10

Senator Leahy Comments On State Department Report On Merida Funding And The Leahy Human Rights Conditions

Following is the reaction of Senator Patrick Leahy, chairman of the Appropriations subcommittee that funds the State Department and foreign aid programs, and author of the human rights conditions on U.S. aid to Mexico, to the Secretary of State's report that Mexico is meeting the conditions: "The United States and Mexico share an interest in stopping the drug related violence and other lawlessness that has engulfed Mexico, and we have provided more than $1.3 billion in aid in the past three yea… Continue Reading


09.03.10

A Leahy-Secured $125,000 Grant Shifts Into Gear The Long-Awaited Reconstruction Of Springfield’s Burned-Out Ellis Block

SPRINGFIELD, Vt. - During a groundbreaking ceremony at the Ellis Block in Springfield on Friday, U.S. Sen. Patrick Leahy announced he has secured a $125,000 federal appropriation to help rebuild workforce housing and a theater lost to a 2008 fire. The appropriation, finalized earlier this summer, ensured that the project could break ground. Housing Vermont and an affiliate of the Springfield Housing Authority have partnered to redevelop Main Street's historic Ellis Block, which was destroyed b… Continue Reading

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