News and Updates Archive

2013-2014

 

September 2014

 

Congressional Recess

The Senate has adjourned and is in recess until November 12. The House is now planning to adjourn on September 19, and will also return in mid-November.

 

Congress Passes Funding Bill

On September 17, the House passed HJ Res 124, the Continuing Appropriations Resolution, 2015, which will fund the government through December 2014. The Senate then approved the bill on September 18, which is now headed to the President’s desk for signature.

 

Staff for Senate Committee Tour NESDIS Facility

On September 18, staff for the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science and Transportation visited the NOAA Satellite Operations Facility in Suitland, Maryland, where they were briefed by officials for NOAA’s National Environmental Satellite and Data Information Service (NESDIS) and given a tour of the facility.

 

Senate Committee Approves Assistant Secretary Nominee

On September 17, the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, And Transportation (Chair, Senator Jay Rockefeller, D-WV) met in executive session and approved the nomination of Vice Admiral Manson K. Brown (Coast Guard, ret.) to be NOAA’s Assistant Secretary for Environmental Observation and Prediction. The nomination now goes to the Senate floor for a vote at a later date to be determined.

 

Senate Markup of International Fisheries Treaties

On September 17, the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation (Chair, Senator Jay Rockefeller, D-WV) met in executive session to consider several items, including:

The Committee approved the bills, and they will be sent to the Senate floor for a vote at a later date to be determined.

 

Representative Pearce Interviews NWS Officials

On September 16 and 17, Representative Steve Pearce (R NM-2) interviewed officials from NOAA's National Weather Service’s (NWS), Midland Weather Forecasting Office (WFO) to discuss rainfall and flooding threats to the region from tropical storm Odile as part of Representative Pearce’s Congressional Review radio show. Both interviews emphasized the short-term forecast and the concept, "turn around don't drown." NWS officials also discussed how September is the wettest month of the year per climatology.

 

NOAA Hosts North Atlantic Roundtable for Delaware Delegation

On September 16, staff for the Delaware Delegation attended a roundtable hosted by NOAA’s North Atlantic Regional Team at the St. Jones Reserve Site of the Delaware National Estuarine Research Reserve in Dover, Delaware. The Roundtable was called “Supporting Vibrant Delaware Communities and Economies” and NOAA officials from the National Weather Service (NWS), National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS), and National Ocean Service (NOS) briefed participants on the products, services, and activities of NWS' Eastern Region and Mount Holly Weather Forecast Offices, NMFS' Science Center and Chesapeake Bay Office, and NOS' Office of Response and Restoration and National Centers for Coastal Ocean Science Cooperative Oxford Laboratory provide. NOAA’s local hosts and partners, including: Delaware Coastal Programs and Delaware Sea Grant, the Delaware Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control, the Delaware River Basin Commission, the University of Delaware, and Greater Brandywine Village also particpated.

 

Senate and House Staff Tour NOAA Ship Okeanos Explorer

On September 13, all interested Senate and House staff joined officials from NOAA’s Office of Marine and Aviation Operations (OMAO), the NOAA Commissioned Officer Corps, and NOAA's Office of Oceanic and Atmospheric Research for a tour of the NOAA Ship Okeanos Explorer. During the tours, held as part of the Star Spangled Banner 200th Anniversary Celebration in Baltimore, Maryland, congressional staff met with the officers and crew of the vessel to learn more about OMAO, the NOAA Corps, and the ship’s mission, programs, and activities.


Senator Mikulski and Representative Culberson Tour NOAA Ship and Attend Reception

On September 12, Senator Barbara Mikulski (D-MD) and Representative John Culberson (R TX-07) toured the NOAA Ship Okeanos Explorer to learn more about NOAA’s Office of Marine and Aviation Operations, the NOAA Corps, and the ship’s mission, programs, and activities. Senator Mikulski and Representative Culberson also joined NOAA leadership at a reception at the National Aquarium in Baltimore, Maryland. The NOAA leadership present at the reception included:

Senate Staff Transit on NOAA Ship Okeanos Explorer

On September 10, staff from the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation joined officials from NOAA’s Office of Marine and Aviation Operations (OMAO) the NOAA Commissioned Officer Corps, and NOAA's Office of Oceanic and Atmospheric Research for a transit up the Chesapeake Bay from Annapolis to Baltimore, Maryland, on the NOAA Ship Okeanos Explorer. During the transit, the congressional staff met with the officers and crew of the vessel to learn more about OMAO, the NOAA Corps, and the ship’s mission, programs, and activities.

 

House Natural Resources Hearing on Endangered Species Act Legislation

On September 9, the House Committee on Natural Resources (Chair, Representative Doc Hastings, R WA-4) held a hearing on proposed legislation to amend the Endangered Species Act. The Director of NOAA’s National Marine Fisheries Service, Office of Protected Resources, Donna Wieting, testified. A copy of the written testimony may be viewed on the Congressional Testimony page.

 

Senate Field Hearing on the Chesapeake Bay Agreement

On September 8, the Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works, Subcommittee on Water and Wildlife (Chair, Senator Ben Cardin, D-MD) held a field hearing in Annapolis, MD, on the recently-signed Chesapeake Bay Agreement (CBA), which seeks to improve Chesapeake Bay habitat, fisheries, and water quality. NOAA is one of seven federal signatories to the CBA, and discussed its role in meeting the ten goals of the Agreement. The Director of NOAA’s National Marine Fisheries Service, Chesapeake Bay Office, Peyton Robertson, testified. A copy of the written testimony may be viewed on the Congressional Testimony page.

 

Senator Levin Attends Thunder Bay National Marine Sanctuary Celebration

On September 6, Senator Carl Levin (D-MI) attended a Thunder Bay National Marine Sanctuary Community Celebration in Alpina, MI. At the event, Senator Levin and officials from NOAA’s National Ocean Service, Office of National Marine Sanctuaries spoke about the research, public input, and support from local and regional officials that led to expanding the Sanctuary’s boundaries from 450 square miles to 4,300 square miles.

 

 

NOAA Fleet Update - September 2014

The NOAA Fleet Update - September 2014 [PDF] provides the status of NOAA’s fleet of ships and aircraft, which play a critical role in the collection of oceanographic, atmospheric, hydrographic, and fisheries data. NOAA’s current fleet of 16 ships – the largest civilian research and survey fleet in the world – and nine aircraft, are operated, managed, and maintained by NOAA’s Office of Marine and Aviation Operations (OMAO). OMAO includes civilians, mariners, and officers of the United States NOAA Commissioned Officer Corps (NOAA Corps), one of the nation’s seven Uniformed Services.
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NOAA Aircraft P-3 (N42RF)
Photo Credit: Aircraft Operations Center (AOC), NOAA

 

August 2014

 

Senator Cantwell Staff Tour NOAA Facilities

On August 28, staff for Senator Maria Cantwell (D-WA) toured NOAA’s Office of Oceanic and Atmospheric Research, Pacific Marine Environmental Laboratory and the National Marine Fisheries Service’s Northwest Fisheries Science Center in Seattle, Washington. Staff were briefed on current research at the facilities, which includes: integrated ecosystem assessments, ocean acidification, seafood safety and aquaculture, carbon programs, and tsunami forecasting.

 

Representative Diaz-Balart Tours AOML

On August 26, Representative Mario Diaz-Balart (R FL-25) toured NOAA’s Office of Oceanic and Atmospheric Research, Atlantic Oceanographic and Meteorological Laboratory (AOML), in Miami, Florida, where he was briefed on AOML’s wave glider deployments in the Gulf of Mexico, ocean acidification research, and the current Hurricane Weather Radar and Forecast model and future development. Representative Diaz-Balart also observed an unmanned aerial vehicle flight and was briefed in how new observations can best improve hurricane forecasts.

 

Representative Flores Tours Mauna Loa Observatory

On August 22, Representative Bill Flores (R TX-17) visited NOAA’s Office of Oceanic and Atmospheric Research, Earth System Research Laboratory’s (ESRL) Mauna Loa Observatory in Hilo, Hawaii, and was briefed on the Observatory’s programs, which measure greenhouse gases, ozone and ozone-depleting substances, solar radiation, and aerosols (particles).

Representative Flores at the Mauna Loa Observatory.

 

Senator Begich Joins Commerce Leadership for Roundtable Event

On August 21, Senator Mark Begich (D-AK) joined the Secretary of the U.S. Department of Commerce, Penny Pritzker, as well as NOAA’s Under Secretary of Commerce for Oceans and Atmosphere and NOAA Administrator, Dr. Kathryn Sullivan, at a business leaders' roundtable event in Anchorage AK.

 

Representative DeFazio Tours Siuslaw River Restoration Site

On August 21, Representative Peter DeFazio (D-OR) joined officials from NOAA’s National Marine Fisheries Service, Office of Habitat Conservation for a tour of the Waite Ranch property and Siuslaw River Restoration Site in Mapleton, OR, during a site visit coordinated by NOAA grantees Ecotrust and McKenzie River Trust. The Waite Ranch property is adjacent to the Siuslaw River in OR, and has been acquired by the McKenzie River Trust for the purpose of habitat restoration, which is scheduled to begin in the summer of 2015. The restoration work will include removal of a levee, which will reconnect approximately 210 acres of tidal estuary habitat and ten miles of tidal channels to the Siuslaw River. The project will provide important habitat for Endangered Species Act-listed OR Coast Coho salmon, Steelhead, Chinook salmon, and many other estuarine species.

 

Senate Committee Staff Visit WFO

On August 15, staff for the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation visited NOAA’s National Weather Service, Weather Forecast Office (WFO) in Rapid City, SD. During the visit, staff received a tour of the facility, and were briefed on the WFO's mission, operations, and work with partners, and observed a radiosonde (weather balloon) launch.

 

Senator Levin Attends Great Lakes Restoration Event

On August 15, Senator Carl Levin (D-MI) attended an event in Muskegon, MI, to commemorate NOAA’s Great Lakes restoration efforts, and announcement of an additional $5.5 million in NOAA Great Lakes Restoration Initiative funding for future projects. Senator Levin was also briefed by officials from NOAA’s National Marine Fisheries Service on habitat restoration and conservation efforts, and toured other restoration initiatives in the region. 

 

NOAA Fleet Update - August 2014

The NOAA Fleet Update - August 2014 [PDF] provides the status of NOAA’s fleet of ships and aircraft, which play a critical role in the collection of oceanographic, atmospheric, hydrographic, and fisheries data. NOAA’s current fleet of 16 ships – the largest civilian research and survey fleet in the world – and nine aircraft, are operated, managed, and maintained by NOAA’s Office of Marine and Aviation Operations (OMAO). OMAO includes civilians, mariners, and officers of the United States NOAA Commissioned Officer Corps (NOAA Corps), one of the nation’s seven Uniformed Services.
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NOAA Ship Oscar Dyson pushing through first-year sea ice in the Bering Sea.
[Photo: Allen Smith, NOAA]

 

Maine Delegation Staff Attend Roundtable on Climate and Fisheries

On August 12, staff for the Maine Delegation attended a roundtable hosted by NOAA’s North Atlantic Regional Team at the Gulf of Maine Research Institute in Portland, ME. NOAA officials discussed the agency’s activities and collaborations in support of Maine’s response to a changing climate, its impacts on fisheries, and NOAA’s work to make Maine communities more resilient. The roundtable also highlighted the Penobscot Bay watershed Habitat Blueprint focus area, and addressed the need for, and progress on, an ocean acidification network for the Northeast. Attendees also visited a CO2 monitoring buoy in the Gulf of Maine aboard the University of New Hampshire's R/V Gulf Challenger. Partners from the state’s coastal program, emergency management, and private industry also attended.

 

Senator Murkowski and Senator Begich Staff Briefings on OMAO

On August 11, staff for Senator Lisa Murkowski (R-AK) and Senator Mark Begich (D-AK) met with the Director of NOAA’s Office of Marine and Aviation Operations (OMAO) and the NOAA Commissioned Officer Corps, Rear Admiral David Score (two star), in Ketchikan, AK. During the meetings, Rear Admiral Score briefed the Senators' staff on the latest fleet updates for OMAO, the NOAA Corps, and efforts related to the Ketchikan homeport.


Representative Huizenga Visits Great Lakes Lab

On August 8, Representative Bill Huizenga (R MI-2) visited NOAA’s Office of Oceanic and Atmospheric Research, Great Lakes Environmental Research Laboratory, Lake Michigan Field Station in Muskegon, MI. Representative Huizenga toured one of the facility’s research vessels and was briefed on NOAA’s research, restoration and regional collaborations in the Great Lakes.

 

Senator Blumenthal Staff Visits Milford Lab

On August 4, staff for Senator Richard Blumenthal (D-CT) visited the National Marine Fisheries Service, Northeast Fisheries Science Center’s Aquaculture Laboratory in Milford, CT. NOAA officials provided a tour of the facility and briefed staff on the Laboratory’s aquaculture and ecosystem programs, educational outreach, and research.

 

July 2014

 

House Hearing on Arctic Issues

On July 23, the House Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure, Subcommittee on Coast Guard and Maritime Transportation (Chair, Representative Duncan Hunter, R CA-50) held a hearing titled, “Implementing U.S. Policy in the Arctic.” The Director of NOAA’s National Ocean Service, Office of Response and Restoration, Dave Westerholm, testified. A copy of the written testimony may be viewed on the Congressional Testimony page.

 

Florida Delegation Attends PORTS Dedication

On July 23, Senator Bill Nelson (D-FL), Senator Marco Rubio (R-FL), Representative Ander Crenshaw (R FL-4), and Representative Corrine Brown (D FL-5), joined NOAA’s Under Secretary of Commerce for Oceans and Atmosphere and NOAA Administrator, Dr. Kathryn Sullivan; the Assistant Administrator of NOAA’s National Ocean Service, Dr. Holly Bamford; and other NOAA, federal, state, and local officials at the dedication of the Physical Oceanographic Real-Time System (PORTS) in Jacksonville, Florida.

 

Senate Committee Markup

On July 23, the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation (Chair, Senator Jay Rockefeller, D-WV) met in an executive session to consider several items, including a couple of bills of interest to NOAA:

The Committee passed both bills, which will go to the Senate floor for a vote at a later date to be determined.

 

Senator Cardin Staff Visit Oxford Lab

On July 11, staff for Senator Ben Cardin (D-MD) visited NOAA’s National Ocean Service, National Centers for Coastal Ocean Science (NCCOS), Cooperative Oxford Lab on the Eastern Shore. The staff were provided with an overview of NCCOS projects as they relate to climate change in the Chesapeake Bay and also received briefings on native oyster restoration projects, NOAA educational programming, the lab’s research, and living shoreline initiatives. The final part of the tour included a trip on the research vessel, Potawaugh, which is the NOAA Chesapeake Bay Office’s primary platform for acoustic survey work.

 

Senator Cochran Staff Visit Buoy Center

On July 8, staff for Senator Thad Cochran (R-MS) toured NOAA’s National Weather Service National Data Buoy Center as part of a NASA-hosted tour of the Stennis Space Center in Gulfport, MS. During the tour, the staff were provided with an informational briefing on the Center’s mission and operations.

 

Delegate Sablan Tours NOAA Ship Oscar Elton Sette

On July 3, Delegate Gregorio Sablan (D-CNMI) visited and toured the NOAA Ship Oscar Elton Sette while the ship was docked in Saipan, Commonwealth of the Northern Marianna Islands. During the tour, Delegate Sablan was briefed by members of the NOAA Commissioned Officer Corps and ship’s crew on the vessel’s mission, programs, and activities.

 

NOAA Fleet Update - July 2014

The NOAA Fleet Update - July 2014 [PDF], provides the status of NOAA’s fleet of ships and aircraft, which play a critical role in the collection of oceanographic, atmospheric, hydrographic, and fisheries data. NOAA’s current fleet of 16 ships – the largest civilian research and survey fleet in the world – and nine aircraft, are operated, managed, and maintained by NOAA’s Office of Marine and Aviation Operations (OMAO). OMAO includes both civilians, mariners, and officers of the United States NOAA Commissioned Officer Corps (NOAA Corps), one of the nations’ seven Uniformed Services.
 
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NOAA Ship Hi'ialakai spent much of the day on July 1 on Sand Island at the Midway Atoll, HI.
[Photo: Tim Monaghan, NOAA]

 

June 2014

 

Harmful Algal Bloom and Hypoxia Research and Control Amendments Act of 2014 Passes

On June 17, theSenate passed an amended Harmful Algal Bloom and Hypoxia Research and Control Amendments Act of 2014, or S. 1254, which first passed the Senate by unanimous consent on February 12, 2014. On June 9, 2014, the amended bill passed the House by unanimous consent. The bill then returned to the Senate for final consideration.

 

Washington Delegation Staff Attend Duwamish River Restoration Project Event

On June 17, staff for the Washington Delegation celebrated the completion of the Duwamish River Restoration Project in Seattle, WA. The Duwamish River Restoration Project is a partnership among NOAA’s National Marine Fisheries Service, West Coast Region, NOAA’s National Ocean Service, and Boeing. Boeing worked with NOAA and other partners to restore habitat for fish, shorebirds, and wildlife harmed by historical industrial activities on this heavily used urban river. The project is one of the largest habitat restoration projects on the Lower Duwamish River, and involved reshaping the shoreline and adding 170,000 native plants and large woody debris to the shore. The plants and woody debris provide areas where young salmon can seek refuge from predators in the river. Other restoration projects included creating two acres of wetlands to provide resting areas for migrating salmon, and transforming more than a half mile of former industrial waterfront back into natural shoreline.

 

NOAA Fleet Update - June 2014

The NOAA Fleet Update - June 2014 [PDF], provides the status of the ships and aircraft in NOAA’s fleet, including current location and planned mission(s), information on our Teacher at Sea program, as well as support provided for unmanned systems and to our federal partners.

NOAA’s ships and aircraft play a critical role in the collection of oceanographic, atmospheric, hydrographic, and fisheries data. NOAA’s fleet of research aircraft and ships are operated, managed, and maintained by NOAA’s Office of Marine and Aviation Operations (OMAO), which includes both civilians and the commissioned officers of the NOAA Commissioned Officer Corps (NOAA Corps), one of the seven Uniformed Services of the United States.

Another great update from the NOAA Teacher at Sea Program, and a participant aboard NOAA Ship Pisces

"The NOAA Ship Pisces is a state-of-the art research vessel. Even when in transit to a specific operational location, it is always recording data and making observations of the ocean and the atmosphere." - TAS Spencer Cody http://teacheratsea.wordpress.com/2014/05/28/spencer-cody-a-sea-of-uncertainty-may-28-2014/

 

39th Annual NOAA Fish Fry

On June 11, Senator Maria Cantwell (D-WA) and over 40 Senate and House staff joined NOAA officials at the annual NOAA Fish Fry. The event featured a variety of fish prepared by guest chefs from across the U.S.

 

Dr. Sullivan Participates in WGA Roundtable

On June 9, NOAA’s Under Secretary of Commerce for Oceans and Atmosphere and NOAA Administrator, Dr. Kathryn Sullivan, participated in a roundtable discussion titled Managing Drought, hosted by the Western Governors’ Association (WGA) during its meeting in Colorado Springs, Colorado. At the event, Dr. Sullivan signed a renewed Memorandum of Understanding between NOAA and the WGA.

Westgov.org News Article and a copy of the MOU

Dr. Sullivan and Governor Hickenlooper and at the MOU signing between NOAA and WGA.

 

House Passes the Harmful Algal Bloom and Hypoxia Research and Control Amendments Act

On June 9, the House passed S 1254, the Harmful Algal Bloom and Hypoxia Research and Control Amendments Act of 2013. The bill passed the Senate by unanimous consent on February 12, 2014. Representative Suzanne Bonamici (D OR-1) and Representative Bill Posey (R FL-8) proposed an amendment to the bill that made minor technical changes. Both the amendment and S 1254 passed unanimously out of the House Science, Space, and Technology committee by voice vote on May 21, 2014. Since the House passed an amended S 1254, the bill will go back to the Senate for final consideration.

 

Senator Cardin Staff Tour NESDIS Facility and Visit NOAA Offices

On June 6, staff for Senator Ben Cardin (D-MD) toured NOAA’s National Environmental Satellite, Data, and Information Service (NESDIS), Satellite Operations Center in Suitland, Maryland. During the tour, staff were briefed by NESDIS officials on the facility’s environmental satellite operations of national and global significance. Later in the day, Senator Cardin’s staff were briefed by NOAA leadership including the Acting Assistant Administrator for NOAA’s Office of Oceanic and Atmospheric Research, Craig McLean, and leadership for the National Ocean Service at NOAA offices in Silver Spring, Maryland.

 

Oklahoma Delegation Staff Visit the National Weather Center

On June 3 and 5, staff for Representative Tom Cole (R OK-4), Representative James Lankford (R OK-5), and Representative Jim Bridenstine (R OK-1) toured the National Weather Center in Norman, Oklahoma, where they were briefed by officials from NOAA’s office of Oceanic and Atmospheric Research and the National Weather Service (NWS) on an experiment occurring in the Hazardous Weather Testbed that is part of a broad effort to revitalize the NWS watch/warning paradigm known as Forecasting a Continuum of Environmental Threats.

 

Senate Committee on Appropriations Approves CJS Bill

On June 5, the Senate Committee on Appropriations (Chair, Senator Barbara Mikulski, D-MD) marked up the Commerce, Justice, Science, and Related Agencies spending bill for FY15, which includes funding for NOAA. The bill approves $51.2 billion of which, $5.4 billion would be for NOAA.  There were no NOAA-related amendments to the bill, and a date for floor consideration has not yet been determined, but could be as soon as the week of June 16.

 

Representative Kennedy Visits NWS Forecast Center

On June 2, Representative Joe Kennedy III (D MA-4) visited and toured the NOAA National Weather Service (NWS), Weather Forecast Office and Northeast River Forecast Center, which are co-located in Taunton, MA — part of Representative Kennedy’s district. Representative Kennedy was briefed by officials from NOAA’s NWS on the office's weather prediction, outreach, and flood forecasting operations, and by National Environmental Satellite, Data, and Information Service Regional Climate Service officials on potential impacts to the district from a changing climate. This event was coordinated as part of NOAA's ongoing outreach plan to create a Weather Ready Nation.

 

Implementing Legislation for International Fisheries Treaties Submitted to Congress

On June 2, the Obama Administration submitted to Congress implementing legislation for three International Fisheries Treaties: the North Pacific Convention, South Pacific Convention and NAFO Convention Amendment, which would enable U.S. participation in two new regional fisheries management organizations (RFMOs) in the North and South Pacific Ocean and support a revised mandate in the Northwest Atlantic Fisheries Organization. These treaties will strengthen our ability to advance U.S. fishing interests and promote sustainable fisheries management overseas.

U.S. participation through these RFMOs will improve international fisheries governance, increase reliance on science-based management and strengthen our ability to combat illegal, unreported and unregulated (IUU) fishing. Our participation in these RFMOs has direct impact to U.S. interests. The United States is a coastal State for each RFMO, meaning that we have fisheries and marine habitats directly adjacent to their convention areas. Our full participation allows us an important voice in management measures that will prevent significant adverse impacts on vulnerable marine ecosystems on the high seas that could impact U.S. resources.

The U.S. approach to science-based fisheries management has become a global model of success.  We are leading the way in scientific and technological advancements and in the development of innovative management strategies for sustainable fisheries. Advancing theses three new International Fisheries Treaties will help us push for international cooperation to achieve effective and responsible marine stewardship and ensure sustainable fisheries management globally.

 

President Signs National Oceans Month Proclamation

President Obama has signed a Proclamation in honor of National Oceans Month - June 2014. NOAA policy staff drafted the proclamation and NOAA was the lead agency on clearance and submission of the Proclamation for the President’s consideration and signature. The text of the Proclamation may be found at:
http://www.whitehouse.gov/the-press-office/2014/05/30/presidential-proclamation-national-oceans-month-2014

 

May 2014

 

House Approves CJS Bill

On May 30, the House approved HR 4660, the Commerce, Justice, Science, and Related Agencies Appropriations Act of 201, by a vote of 321-87. The bill contains $51.2 billion in total discretionary funding – a reduction of $398 million below the fiscal year 2014 enacted level. NOAA would get about $5.3 billion, fully funding two major satellite programs and boosting the appropriations for the National Weather Service above the Administration's request. Several NOAA-related amendments were considered during the floor debate, including:

 

House Committee Passes Bill to Amend Magnuson

On May 29, the House Committee on Natural Resources (Chair, Representative Doc Hastings, R WA-4) held a markup on, and passed, HR 4742, the Strengthening Fishing Communities and Increasing Flexibility in Fisheries Management Act. The bill is to amend and reauthorize the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act of 2006 and a number of amendments were considered prior to approving the final bill, which will now go to the House floor for a vote at a later date to be determined.

Before passage, committee members approved by voice vote 11 amendments to the measure:

Additionally, the committee voted down five amendments to the legislation:

 

Staff for Senator Udall Tour David Skaggs Research Center

On May 28, staff for Senator Mark Udall (D-CO) toured NOAA’s David Skaggs Research Center in Boulder, CO. NOAA officials briefed Senator Udall’s staff on the Earth System Research Laboratory’s Global Monitoring, Chemical Sciences, Physical Sciences, Space Weather Prediction, and Weather Forecasting services.

 

NOAA Officials Host Hurricane Awareness Tour

On May 23, local Senate and House staff joined NOAA officials for the final stop on NOAA’s Hurricane Awareness Tour in Tampa, FL. The Tour has been conducted for over 30 years and is a critical piece of a campaign to raise public awareness about, and preparation for, the upcoming 2014 Hurricane Season. The goal of the Tour is to protect communities through preparation and awareness.

 

National Hurricane Preparedness Week Proclamation

On May 23, President Obama signed a Presidential Proclamation in honor of National Hurricane Preparedness Week – May 25-30. NOAA’s National Weather Service drafted the proclamation and NOAA was the lead agency on clearance and submission of the Proclamation for the President’s consideration and signature. The text of the Proclamation may be found at:
http://www.whitehouse.gov/the-press-office/2014/05/23/presidential-proclamation-national-hurricane-preparedness-week-2014

 

 

NOAA Fleet Update - May 2014

The NOAA Fleet Update - May 2014 [PDF], provides the status of the ships and aircraft in NOAA’s fleet, including current location and planned mission(s), information on our Teacher at Sea program, as well as support provided for unmanned systems and to our federal partners.

NOAA’s ships and aircraft play a critical role in the collection of oceanographic, atmospheric, hydrographic, and fisheries data. NOAA’s fleet of research aircraft and ships are operated, managed, and maintained by NOAA’s Office of Marine and Aviation Operations (OMAO), which includes both civilians and the commissioned officers of the NOAA Commissioned Officer Corps (NOAA Corps), one of the seven Uniformed Services of the United States.

Norfolk, VA - The NOAA Ship Nancy Foster is currently moored at NOAA Marine Operations Center-Atlantic, next to the NOAA Ship Gordon Gunter prior to heading just outside Chesapeake Bay to do sediment sampling and water column research with our colleagues at the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.

Photo: Ens. Conor Maginn, NOAA

 

2014 Hurricane Season Outlook Interagency Briefing for Congress

On May 22, over 50 Senate and House staff were briefed by officials for NOAA’s National Weather Service and National Ocean Service, and officials for the Federal Emergency Management Agency and American Red Cross. The briefing highlighted proactive measures each agency is taking to better prepare U.S. citizens and communities for the 2014 Hurricane Season. The Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation hosted the briefing.

 

House Markup of Harmful Algal Bloom and Hypoxia Act

On May 21, the House Committee on Science, Space, and Technology (Chair, Representative Lamar Smith, R TX-21) held a markup on S 1254, the Harmful Algal Bloom and Hypoxia Research and Control Amendments Act of 2013. The bill, introduced by Senator Bill Nelson (D-FL), passed the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation on July 30, 2013, and the full Senate by unanimous consent on February 12, 2014. Representatives Suzanne Bonamici (D OR-1) and Bill Posey (R FL-8) proposed an amendment to the bill that made minor technical changes. Both the amendment and S 1254 passed unanimously out of committee by voice vote.

 

NOAA Officials Host Hurricane Awareness Tour

On May 19-22, all-interested Senate and House staff, and local and state officials, joined NOAA officials for a Hurricane Awareness Tour in hurricane-vulnerable locations across the United States; Corpus Christi, TX; Houston, TX; New Orleans, LA; Tallahassee, FL; and Tampa, FL. The Tour has been conducted for over 30 years, and is a critical piece of a campaign to raise public awareness about, and preparation for, the upcoming 2014 Hurricane Season. The goal of the Tour was to protect communities through preparation and awareness. Officials from the Federal Emergency Management Agency joined the TX Tour stops.

Day four for the NOAA Hurricane Awareness Tour brought us to Tallahassee, Florida. The NOAA P-3 Orion aircraft was joined by a USAF Reserve C130-J hurricane hunter aircraft that's based at Keesler AFB in Biloxi, Mississippi. More than 1200 students from area schools came out to visit both planes!

 

DOC Commerce Day on the Hill

On May 20, the Department of Commerce (DOC) hosted Commerce Day on the Hill for all-interested Senate and House staff. At the event, DOC bureaus showcased its mission to create the conditions for economic growth and opportunity using interactive displays. NOAA’s displays emphasized fisheries management and how coastal resilience and weather forecasts save lives.

 

Representative Boustany and NOAA Officials Host 2014 Hurricane Season Briefings

On May 12 and 14, Representative Charles Boustany Jr. (R LA-3) and officials from NOAA’s National Weather Service and National Ocean Service hosted public briefings in Lafayette, AL, and Morgan City, LA, respectively. The topic of the briefings was the upcoming 2014 hurricane season. Representative Boustany and NOAA officials discussed the preparation south Louisianans need to respond to hurricanes and tropical cyclones threatening the state.

 

Representative Frelinghuysen and Hurricane Hunter Pilot Tour Schools

On May 13, Representative Rodney Frelinghuysen (R NJ-11) was joined by a Hurricane Hunter Pilot from NOAA’s Office of Marine and Aviation Operations and the NOAA Commissioned Officer Corps for a series of visits to schools in the Morristown, NJ, area, where they spoke to hundreds of students. The purpose of the visits was to emphasize the importance of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics and to educate the students about NOAA’s work and the valuable contributions its aircraft fleet and Corps pilots provide to the nation.

 

C-J-S Bill Advances–Excerpted from CQ.com

On May 8, House appropriators advanced a measure to fund the Justice and Commerce departments, along with science agencies, after endorsing a GOP gun proposal and sidelining a series of Democratic firearm policy amendments. The draft fiscal 2015 bill would provide $51.2 billion in discretionary funds, a $398 million decrease from currently enacted spending levels. The Appropriations Committee approved the measure by voice vote.

The measure would provide $8.4 billion for the Commerce Department, a $171 million increase above currently enacted levels. Within that agency, House appropriators would keep funding for NOAA virtually equal” to fiscal 2014 at $5.3 billion, according to the committee, while emphasizing spending on weather forecasting and warning systems.

“Simply put: these investments save lives. They saved lives in Arkansas and Mississippi, and they will save lives wherever the next severe weather event strikes,” said C-J-S subcommittee Chairman, Representative Frank Wolf (R VA-1).

Despite the relatively flat funding for NOAA, some of the committee’s top Democrats slammed GOP cuts to the agency’s programs outside of weather forecasting, particularly a 24 percent reduction to the climate research account.

 

Representative Davis and Staff For Senator Boxer Attend Lasker Commissioning

On May 2, Representative Susan Davis (D CA-53) was joined by staff for Senator Barbara Boxer (D-CA); state and local officials; NOAA’s Deputy Under Secretary of Operations, Vice Admiral Mike Devany; and officials from NOAA’s Office of Marine and Aviation Operations and National Marine Fisheries Service for the commissioning of the Reuben Lasker in San Diego, CA. The Lasker is the fifth in a series of the most technologically advanced fisheries survey vessels in the world and will primarily support fish, marine mammal and turtle surveys off the U.S. West Coast and in the eastern tropical Pacific Ocean. The new ship will improve NOAA’s ability to manage fisheries stocks and recover protected species. It is named after the late Dr. Reuben Lasker, who served as the Director of SWFSC’s Coastal Fisheries Division and as adjunct professor at Scripps Institution of Oceanography, U.C. San Diego.

Lasker
Please enjoy some more photos of the NOAA Ship Reuben Lasker commissioning ceremony at the USS Midway Museum in San Diego!
Lasker crew

 

April 2014

 

NOAA FY 2015 Budget Hearing

On April 30, the House Committee on Science, Space, and Technology, Subcommittee on Environment (Chair, Representative David Schweikert, R AZ-6) held a hearing on NOAA’s FY 2015 budget request. NOAA’s Under Secretary of Commerce for Oceans and Atmosphere and NOAA Administrator, Dr. Kathryn Sullivan, testified.  A copy of the written testimony may be viewed on the Congressional Testimony page.

 

Markup on Legislation to Amend the Endangered Species Act

On April 30, the House Committee on Natural Resources (Chair, Representative Doc Hastings, R WA-4) held an executive session and markup. The following bills to amend the Endangered Species Act of 1973 were considered:

HR 4315, HR 4316, and HR 4318 passed out of committee and were sent to the House floor for consideration, date: TBD.

 

FY 2015 Budget Briefings for Congress

Recently, a number of Members of the Senate and House and congressional staff were briefed by NOAA leadership on the FY 2015 NOAA Budget Request (and/or the Line Office/Program FY 2015 request). Below are the briefings that occurred, noting date, Member or staff, briefer(s), and OLIA Lead(s):

April 30

April 29

April 28

 

 

Staff for Representative Bonamici Tour Pacific Marine Environmental Laboratory

On April 24, staff for Representative Suzanne Bonamici (D OR-1) toured NOAA’s Office of Oceanic and Atmospheric Research, Pacific Marine Environmental Laboratory (PMEL) in Newport, OR. NOAA officials from the head of PMEL’s Acoustic and Earth and Interactions Programs provided the staff with a tour of the facilities and briefed staff on research in acoustics, renewable energy, and hydrothermal vents.

 

Representative Miller Attends the Groundbreaking of Marsh Restoration

On April 22, Representative George Miller (D CA-11) attended a groundbreaking celebration of the highly anticipated Bruener Marsh Restoration Project in Richmond, CA. The project is a cross-line office partnership among NOAA’s National Marine Fisheries Service, National Ocean Service, and Office of General Counsel and will restore 60 acres of wetlands and create marsh channels for native fish and invertebrates. The project will also restore coastline prairie, protect the endangered California clapper rail and saltmarsh harvest mouse, and provide public access to the San Francisco Bay shoreline. Staff from NOAA's National Ocean Service, Damage Assessment Remediation and Restoration Program joined California State Senator Loni Hancock and State Assembly Member Nancy Skinned at the celebration.

 

From drought.gov: New Report Documents Changes in Navajo Nation Lands, Offers Hope for Resilience

In the Southwest, the decade of 2001-10 has been warmer than any of the previous 10 decades of the 20th century, with greater temperature increases during spring and summer, decreases in number of cold waves, and increases in number of heat waves.Since 1994, there has been an overall drought coupled with brief periods of wetness. During the past 2,000 years, there have been droughts more severe and longer than droughts in modern times. It is possible that the relative wetness of the previous century could have been an anomaly. Rising temperatures, prolonged drought, increases in extreme weather events, and ecosystem changes have the potential to significantly alter the 27,000 square miles of Navajo Nation reservation lands. More than 170,000 people live in this arid region about the size of West Virginia.

The new report Considerations for Climate Change and Variability Adaptation on the Navajo Nation provides foundational information for planning for anticipated and proven challenges from climatic shifts on the Navajo Reservation. The report highlights potential and actual climate changes occurring in the Southwest and Four Corners region and presents an example of an adaptation planning and implementation process, applicable to any group facing disruption.

 

NOAA Fleet Update - April 2014

The NOAA Fleet Update - April 2014 [PDF], provides the status of the ships and aircraft in NOAA’s fleet, including current location and planned mission(s), information on our Teacher at Sea program, as well as support provided for unmanned systems and to our federal partners.

NOAA’s ships and aircraft play a critical role in the collection of oceanographic, atmospheric, hydrographic, and fisheries data. NOAA’s fleet of research aircraft and ships are operated, managed, and maintained by NOAA’s Office of Marine and Aviation Operations (OMAO), which includes both civilians and the commissioned officers of the NOAA Commissioned Officer Corps (NOAA Corps), one of the seven Uniformed Services of the United States.

SetteOur Facebook Family has grown! We're happy to welcome NOAA Ship Oscar Elton Sette to Facebook! The Sette is homeported in Honolulu, Hawaii, and works on some amazing missions in the NW Hawaiian Islands, and other Pacific Island U.S. Territories. Be sure to "Like" their page, and tell your friends. NOAA Ship Oscar Elton Sette

 


Staff for Representative Polis Tour David Skaggs Research Center

On April 14, staff for Representative Jared Polis (D CO-2) toured NOAA’s David Skaggs Research Center in Boulder, CO. The tour was an opportunity for Representative Polis’ staff to learn about NOAA research at the Boulder facility, which is located in the Representative’s district.

 

NOAA Great Lakes Restoration Briefing

On April 11, Representative Candice Miller (R MI-10) was briefed by NOAA officials on NOAA’s Great Lakes Restoration Program and related activities within her district, particularly the Saginaw Bay area, which is plagued by harmful algal blooms resulting from nutrient inputs from agricultural runoff. The event took place at NOAA’s Restoration Center and Great Lakes Environmental Research Laboratory in Ann Arbor, MI.

 

WA Representatives Attend Restoration Event

On April 11, Representative Peter DeFazio (D OR-4), Representative Derek Kilmer (D WA-6), Representative Denny Heck (D WA-10), and NOAA officials attended a Restoration Event in Commencement Bay, WA. The event was hosted by the Commencement Bay Trustees, a group comprised of: NOAA, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, the Bureau of Indian Affairs, the WA Departments of Ecology, Natural Resources, and Fish and Wildlife, and members of the Puyallup and Muckleshoot Indian Tribes. Commencement Bay and its eight waterways are home to dozens of industrial and commercial operations, including chemical manufacturing companies, oil refineries, and food processing plants. The area is also home to diverse marine species, such as Chinook, Coho, and chum salmon, steelhead trout, flatfish, and numerous bird species. For decades, hazardous substances from local industries contaminated Commencement Bay, its waterways, and sediment. In October 1991, NOAA and its co-trustees began a damage assessment and restoration planning process. The effort resulted in $4.9 million in funding to maintain 17 restoration projects in Commencement Bay. The Restoration Event was an opportunity for WA Representatives to learn about the restoration projects and prospective activities for the restored Bay.

 

Senate Committee Markup

On April 9, the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation (Chair, Senator Jay Rockefeller, D-WV) held an executive session and markup in which the following bills were considered:

The bills passed out of committee and were sent to the Senate floor for consideration, date: TBD.

 

Hearing on Legislation to Amend the Endangered Species Act

On April 8, the House Committee on Natural Resources (Chair, Representative Doc Hastings, R WA-4) held a hearing on four bills to amend the Endangered Species Act of 1973. The bills are:

The Deputy Assistant Administrator for Regulatory Programs of NOAA’s National Marine Fisheries Service, Sam Rauch, testified. A copy of the written testimony can be viewed on the Congressional Testimony page.

 

NWS StormReady and TsunamiReady Recognition Ceremony in Guam

On April 4, Delegate Madeleine Bordallo (D-GU) and Governor Eddie Baza Calvo (R-GU) participated in a StormReady and TsunamiReady Recognition Ceremony hosted by officials from NOAA’s National Weather Service (NWS), Weather Forecast Office. The event took place at the 36th Air Base Wing at Andersen Air Force Base, which is the first facility in the Micronesia region to be recognized as StormReady and TsunamiReady.

 

Senate Endorses Treaty in ‘Pirate Fishing’ Crackdown – as reported by CQ.com

On April 3, the Senate agreed by voice vote to consent to ratification of several global fishing treaties to crack down on so-called pirate fishing that reduces seafood populations and puts the U.S. commercial fishing industry at a financial disadvantage. The United States signed the Port State Measures Agreement (Treaty Doc 112-4), the first binding global treaty to combat illegal, unregulated and unreported fishing, in 2009 but it has been awaiting action in the Senate since 2011. Senators also backed three regional treaties designed to improve coordination among the United States and nations in the North Pacific (Treaty Doc 113-2), South Pacific (Treaty Doc 113-1) and Northwest Atlantic (Treaty Doc 113-3).

 

House Hearing on Illegal, Unreported, and Unregulated Fishing Legislation

On April 3, the House Committee on Natural Resources, Subcommittee on Fisheries, Wildlife, Oceans, and Insular Affairs (Chair, Representative John Fleming, R LA-4) held a legislative hearing on:

NOAA’s Deputy Assistant Secretary for International Fisheries, Russell Smith, testified, and copy of the written testimony may be viewed on the Congressional Testimony page.

 

Senator Begich Staff Visit to NWS Alaska Region

On April 3, staff for Senator Mark Begich (D-AK) were briefed by officials from NOAA’s National Weather Service (NWS), Alaska Region, during a meeting in in Anchorage, Alaska. After the briefing, which discussed the relationship between the NWS Alaska Region and emergency managers throughout the State, the Senator’s staff toured the facility and learned about NOAA’s emergency coordination work.

 

March 2014

 

Lasker

NOAA’s newest fisheries survey vessel, the Reuben Lasker, recently transited the Panama Canal on its way to its homeport of Sand Diego, California. Among the staff and crew aboard the ship are officers from three different services – the NOAA Commissioned Officer Corps, the United States Coast Guard (USCG), and the United States Public Health Service (USPHS). They include, from left to right:

LCDR Elizabeth Buendia (USCG), LT Claire Surrey-Marsden (NOAA Corps), CDR Helen Ballantyne (USPHS), ENS Cherisa Friedlander (NOAA Corps), LT Ellen Cava (USCG).

 

NESDIS Newsletter- March 2014

The NESDIS Newsletter- March 2014 [PDF], provides an update on the operations, key data sets, messages, activities, and programs for NOAA's National Environmental Satellite, Data, and Information Service.

 

Senate and House Staff Briefing on U.S. Drought

On March 13, all interested House and Senate staff were briefed by NOAA’s Assistant Secretary of Commerce for Conservation and Management, Dr. Mark Schaefer, and other government agency officials on the drought affecting the Western United States. The briefing was an updated version of a similar meeting delivered to the Western Governors in the Situation Room at the White House in late February. Dr. Schaefer discussed the current Drought Monitor, Drought Outlook, and the most recent forecast for the region.

 

Senator Wicker and Representative Farr Recognized at Knauss Welcome Reception

On March 11, Senator Roger Wicker (R-MS) and Representative Sam Farr (D CA-20) were recognized at the 2014 John D. Knauss Sea Grant Welcome Reception. The Members were celebrated for their congressional support of coastal and marine issues and contributions to NOAA’s Sea Grant Fellowship program. At the event, the 2014 Sea Grant Fellows were recognized and welcomed into the marine policy community. NOAA’s Deputy Undersecretary for Operations, Vice Admiral Michael Devany, was in attendance and spoke with Senator Wicker and Representative Farr.

 

Senate Committee on Foreign Relations Recommends Senate Ratification of International Fisheries Treaties

On March 11, the Senate Committee on Foreign Relations voted to recommend Senate approval and ratification of four international fisheries treaties. Ratification of these treaties is expected to provide an international signal that the United States is aligned with its partner nations in their joint efforts to reduce and eradicate illegal, unreported, and unregulated fishing.  In February, the Committee’s Surface Transportation and Merchant Marine Infrastructure, Safety, and Security Subcommittee held a hearing on these treaties. The hearing included NOAA officials, State and USCG witnesses, Senator Lisa Murkowski (R-AK), and Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI). The four unratified treaties are:

 

NOAA Fleet Update - March 2014

The NOAA Fleet Update - March 2014 [PDF], provides the status of the ships and aircraft in NOAA’s fleet, including current location and planned mission(s), information on our Teacher at Sea program, as well as support provided for unmanned systems and to our federal partners.

NOAA’s ships and aircraft play a critical role in the collection of oceanographic, atmospheric, hydrographic, and fisheries data. NOAA’s fleet of research aircraft and ships are operated, managed, and maintained by NOAA’s Office of Marine and Aviation Operations (OMAO), which includes both civilians and the commissioned officers of the NOAA Commissioned Officer Corps (NOAA Corps), one of the seven Uniformed Services of the United States.

Rainier

NOAA Ship Rainier was recently up on blocks in Lake Union Dry Dock, Seattle WA undergoing maintenance.
Photo: LTJG Joseph Phillips, NOAA

 

February 2014

 

NESDIS Newsletter- February 2014

The NESDIS Newsletter- February 2014 [PDF], provides an update on the operations, key data sets, messages, activites, and programs for NOAA's National Environmental Satellite, Data, and Information Service.

 

House Hearing on MSA Reauthorization

On February 28, the House Committee on Natural Resources (Chair, Representative Doc Hastings, R WA-4) held a hearing to discuss Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act (MSA) reauthorization with a focus on the Pacific. The Director of the Pacific Island Science Center of NOAA’s National Marine Fisheries Service, Dr. Sam Pooley, testified. A copy of the written testimony may be viewed on the Congressional Testimony page of the OLIA website.

 

House Hearing on ESA

On February 27, the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform, Subcommittee on Energy, Health Care, and Entitlements (Chair, Representative James Lankford, R OK-5) is held a hearing on Endangered Species Act (ESA)implementation. The Deputy Assistant Administrator for Regulatory Programs at NOAA’s National Marine Fisheries Service, Sam Rauch, testified and a copy of the written testimony may be viewed on the Congressional Testimony page.

 

Senate Hearing on MSA Reauthorization

On February 27, the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science and Transportation, Subcommittee on Oceans, Atmosphere, Fisheries, and Coast Guard (Chair, Senator Mark Begich, D-AK) held the fourth, and final, of a series of hearings to discuss Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act (MSA)reauthorization and regional fisheries management issues, this one on the North Pacific perspective. The Alaska Regional Administrator for NOAA’s National Marine Fisheries Service, Dr. Jim Balsiger, testified and a copy of the written testimony may be viewed on the Congressional Testimony page.

 

Dr. Sullivan Joins Governors and Members of the Cabinet

February 23, the Acting Under Secretary of Commerce for Oceans and Atmosphere and NOAA Administrator, Dr. Kathryn Sullivan, attended the Western Governors' Association breakfast meeting as part of the National Governors' Association Winter Meeting in Washington, DC. The meeting was hosted by the Administrator of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), Gina McCarthy, and held at the EPA. In addition to Dr. Sullivan and Administrator McCarthy, cabinet members included Secretary Vilsak (Department of Agriculture), Secretary Jewell (Department of Interior) and Secretary Moniz (Department of Energy).

Dr Sullivan

1st Row, L to R: Governor Mary Fallin – Oklahoma, Governor Gary Herbert – Utah, Administrator Gina McCarthy – EPA, Secretary Ernest Moniz – Energy, Secretary Sally Jewell – Interior, Governor Jan Brewer - Arizona, Acting Administrator, Dr. Kathryn Sullivan –NOAA, Governor Jack Dalrymple - North Dakota, Governor Eloy Enos - Northern Marianas Islands
2nd Row, L to R: Governor Matt Mead – Wyoming, Secretary Tom Vilsak – USDA, Governor John Hickenlooper – Colorado, Governor Steve Bullock – Montana, Governor Brian Sandoval – Nevada, Governor Jay Inslee – Washington, Governor John Kitzhaber - Oregon

 

Senate and House Staff Visit NOAA Center

On February 21, interested Senate and House staff joined officials from NOAA’s National Environmental Data, Satellite, and Information Service and National Weather Service for a visit the NOAA Center for Weather and Climate Prediction in College Park, Maryland. During the visit to the Center, the staff met with scientists at the Ocean Prediction Center, Weather Prediction Center, Satellite Analysis Branch, and the Air Resources Laboratory. In addition, a series of briefings were held on select NOAA activities including lightning mapping, building resilience to coastal inundation in the Chesapeake Bay, Maryland Sea Grant, satellite altimetry, and the Cooperative Institute for Climate and Satellites. Staff from the following offices attended:

 

Representative Nugent Staff Visit to AOC

On February 21, staff for Representative Rich Nugent (R FL-11) visited MacDill Airforce Base in Tampa, Florida, where they met with officials from NOAA’s Office of Marine and Aviation Operations, Aircraft Operations Center (AOC) and the NOAA Commission Officer Corps. Representative Nugent is interested in learning more about the various commands and federal functions at MacDill and his staff received a briefing by members of the Corps and other staff on the Center’s mission, programs, and activities as well as our aircraft research platforms including the WP-3D Hurricane Hunters.

 

House Committee Staff Visit NSOF

On February 19, staff from the House Committee on Science, Space, and Technology visited the NOAA Satellite Operations Facility (NSOF) in Suitland, Maryland. During the visit, staff toured the facility, viewed a demonstration of Satellite and Product Operations by the Satellite Analysis Branch, and had a tour of the National Ice Center.

 

NOAA Fleet Update - February 2014

The NOAA Fleet Update - February 2014 [PDF], provides the status of the ships and aircraft in NOAA’s fleet, including current location and planned mission(s), information on our Teacher at Sea program, as well as support provided for unmanned systems and to our federal partners.

NOAA’s ships and aircraft play a critical role in the collection of oceanographic, atmospheric, hydrographic, and fisheries data. NOAA’s fleet of research aircraft and ships are operated, managed, and maintained by NOAA’s Office of Marine and Aviation Operations (OMAO), which includes both civilians and the commissioned officers of the NOAA Commissioned Officer Corps (NOAA Corps), one of the seven Uniformed Services of the United States.
aircraft ops

The NOAA Office of Oceanic and Atmospheric Research project on Atmospheric Rivers over the Pacific was very busyrecently as major storm activity moved into the North American Coast. Here, OMAO Flight Meteorologist Rich Henning is shown at his workstation in the NOAA G-4 aircraft helping coordinate the work.
Photo: Mr. Gabe Defeo, NOAA

 

Senate Hearing on International Fisheries Treaties

On February 12, the Senate Committee on Foreign Relations (Chair, Senator Robert Menendez, D-NJ) will hold a hearing on the four International Fisheries Treaties (Port State Measures, North Pacific, South Pacific and North Atlantic Fisheries Organization treaties) currently under review by the full Committee. NOAA’s Deputy Assistant Secretary for International Fisheries, Russell Smith, testified and a copy of the written testimony may be viewed on the Congressional Testimony page.

 

California Delegation Briefing on Drought

On February 11, several Members of the California Delegation and all interested congressional staff, joined NOAA’s Assistant Secretary of Commerce for Conservation and Management and Deputy Administrator, Dr. Mark Schaefer, and other federal officials at a briefing on California drought issues. This was the first in a series of planned briefings to inform Congress of the status of the administration’s efforts to address California water issues, to walk through the latest science, and the nature and availability of federal programs and funding to assist. The Members in attendance included:

 

Senate Meeting on Fishery Disaster Funding

On February 11, several Members of the Northeast Delegation met with NOAA’s Acting Under Secretary of Commerce for Oceans and Atmosphere and NOAA Administrator, Dr. Kathryn Sullivan, to discuss funding for fisheries disasters. The Members included:

 

House Hearing on MSA Reauthorization

On February 4, the House Committee on Natural Resources (Chair, Representative Doc Hastings, R-WA-4) held a hearing to discuss Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act (MSA) reauthorization. The Deputy Assistant Administrator for NOAA’s National Marine Fisheries Service, Sam Rauch, testified and a copy of the written testimony may be viewed on the Congressional Testimony page.

House Hearing on Navigation

On February 4, the House Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure, Subcommittee on Coast Guard and Maritime Transportation (Chair, Representative Duncan Hunter, R CA-52) held a hearing entitled "Finding Your Way: The Future of Federal Aids to Navigation." The Director of NOAA’s National Ocean Service, Office of Coast Survey, Rear Admiral Gerd Glang, testified and a copy of the written testimony may be viewed on the Congressional Testimony page.

 

January 2014

 

Senate Hearing on MSA Reauthorization

On January 30, the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science and Transportation, Subcommittee on Oceans, Atmosphere, Fisheries, and Coast Guard (Chair, Senator Mark Begich, D-AK) held the third of a series of hearings to discuss Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act (MSA) reauthorization and regional fisheries management issues. The West Coast Regional Administrator of NOAA’s National Marine Fisheries Service, Will Stelle, testified on the successes to date under the MSA as well as on issues of concern in the Pacific and Western Pacific regions. A copy of the written testimony may be viewed on the Congressional Testimony page.

 

NOAA Fleet Update - January 2014

The NOAA Fleet Update - January 2014 [PDF] , provides the status of the ships and aircraft in NOAA’s fleet, including current location and planned mission(s), information on our Teacher at Sea program, as well as support provided for unmanned systems and to our federal partners.

NOAA’s ships and aircraft play a critical role in the collection of oceanographic, atmospheric, hydrographic, and fisheries data. NOAA’s fleet of research aircraft and ships are operated, managed, and maintained by NOAA’s Office of Marine and Aviation Operations (OMAO), which includes both civilians and the commissioned officers of the NOAA Commissioned Officer Corps (NOAA Corps), one of the seven Uniformed Services of the United States.
Admirals Secretary Pritzker, Vice Admiral Devany, Rear Admiral Score, Rear Admiral Lopez, and Acting Deputy Secretary of Commerce Gallagher

 

December 2013

 

Senator Murphy Staff Attend NOAA Corps BOTC Graduation

On December 19, staff for Senator Christopher Murphy (D-CT) joined NOAA's Assistant Secretary of Conservation and Management, Dr. Mark Schaefer, and the Director of NOAA's Office of Marine and Aviation Operations and the NOAA Commissioned Officer Corps, Rear Admiral Mike Devany, at the NOAA Commissioned Officer Corp's 122nd Basic Office Training Class (BOTC) graduation at the U.S. Coast Guard Academy (USCG) in New London, Connecticut.

Representative Hanabusa Attends Inouye Regional Center Dedication in Hawaii

On December 16, Representative Colleen Hanabusa (D HI-1) spoke at the formal dedication of NOAA’s Inouye Regional Center (IRC) in Honolulu, Hawaii. Staff from the Hawaiian Delegation attended the event along with NOAA’s Acting Under Secretary of Commerce for Oceans and Atmosphere and Administrator, Dr. Kathryn Sullivan, NOAA's Acting Assistant Administrator for the National Marine Fisheries Service, Sam Rauch, and other NOAA officials. NOAA’s IRC consolidates over 700 people from diverse locations from around the island of Oahu into a new research and administrative headquarters for the Pacific Region in Hawaii.

 

Senate Hearing on Weather Forecasting

On December 12, the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation, Subcommittee on Oceans, Atmosphere, Fisheries, and Coast Guard (Chair, Senator Mark Begich, D-AK) held a hearing entitled “Forecasting Success: Achieving U.S. Weather Readiness for the Long Term.” The hearing focused on NOAA National Weather Service’s efforts to improve the timeliness, accuracy, and accessibility of weather forecasting and prediction services and whether currently available data and capabilities are adequately meeting the needs of the public. NOAA’s Assistant Administrator for National Weather Service, Dr. Louis Uccellini, testified on behalf of NOAA. A copy of Dr. Uccellini’s written testimony may be viewed on the Congressional Testimony page.

 

Senator Shaheen Staff Attend Change of Command Ceremony for NOAA Ship

On December 6, staff from the office of Senator Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH) joined officials from NOAA’s Office of Marine and Aviation Operations and the NOAA Commissioned Officer Corps for a Change of Command ceremony for the NOAA Ship Ferdinand R. Hassler in New Castle, New Hampshire. A letter of greeting from the Senator was read during the event and the staff had the chance to tour the vessel and meet the Corps Officers and crew to learn more about the vessel’s mission, programs, and activities.

 

House Markup on Marine Debris Bills

 

On December 4, the House Committee on Natural Resources (Chairman, Representative Doc Hastings, R-WA-4) held a markup of several bills, including two bills introduced by Representative Suzanne Bonamici (D OR-1) that address marine debris:

Both bills were passed by the Committee.

 

November 2013

 

Representative Stewart Visits Forecast Centers

On November 26, Representative Chris Stewart (R UT-2) visited and toured NOAA’s National Weather Service (NWS) Weather Forecast Office and Colorado Basin River Forecast Center, both co-located in Salt Lake City, Utah. Representative Stewart was briefed by NWS officials on Weather Ready Nation.

 

Senator Schumer Hosts Senate and House Staff Briefing on Sandy Response

On November 20, all interested Senate and House staff attended a briefing titled “Natural Disasters and NOAA's Role in Supporting Coastal Communities Before, During and After a Storm - A Case Study of Hurricane Sandy. The briefing highlighted good practices that helped coastal communities and decision-makers during this difficult time and what can be learned for future storm preparedness. Senator Charles Schumer (D-NY) hosted the briefing, and panelists included NOAA’s Assistant Administrator of the National Weather Service, Dr. Louis Uccellini and an official from NOAA’s National Ocean Service. The panel shared informative success stories of community engagement and capacity building on the local governmental and stakeholder levels.

 

House and Senate Appropriations Staff Visit Chesapeake Bay

On November 14, staff from the Senate and House Committees on Appropriations visited the Chesapeake Bay region to experience NOAA's collaborative approach to science and stewardship in the Bay. NOAA officials briefed visiting staff on key NOAA programs including oyster restoration, estuarine research, hydrographic mapping and charting, and the Chesapeake Bay Interpretive Buoy System.

Senate Hearing on Southeast Regional Perspectives on MSA Reauthorization

On November 14, the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science and Transportation (Chair, Senator Jay Rockefeller, D-WV) held the second of a series of hearings to discuss Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act (MSA) reauthorization and regional fisheries management issues.

The Southeast Regional Administrator of NOAA’s National Marine Fisheries Service, Dr. Roy Crabtree, testified on the successes to date under the MSA as well as on issues of concern in the South Atlantic, Gulf of Mexico and Caribbean, and a copy of the written testimony may be viewed on the Congressional Testimony page.

Final Tribal Consultation Handbook

On November 14, NOAA announced the Final Tribal Consultation Handbook titled
NOAA Procedures for Government-to-Government Consultation With Federally Recognized Indian Tribes and Alaska Native Corporations.” This Handbook is intended to improve coordination and consultation with Indian tribal governments.  It will assist NOAA, including its regional and field staff, in conducting effective government-to-government consultations and fulfill NOAA’s obligations under E.O. 13175 and Department Administrative Order 218-8 on Consultation and Coordination with Indian Tribal Governments, and the Department of Commerce Tribal Consultation and Coordination Policy.

On June 24, 2013, NOAA published a notice and requested comments on a draft “NOAA Procedures for Government-to-Government Consultation with Federally Recognized Indian Tribes” in the Federal Register.  In response, NOAA received letters from 10 different entities, with approximately 25 unique comments.  A summary of comments received and NOAA’s responses to those comments will be published this week in the Federal Register.

In addition, this year NOAA has:
• Announced a NOAA Tribal Liaison—Linda Belton;
• Announced a Tribal Liaison for each Line Office with in NOAA which
are listed in the Handbook;
• Established a Tribal Working Group;
• Developed an external websites for all Tribal information;
• NOAA has meetings on continual basis both regionally and nationally
with tribal leaders and commissions;
• Developing internal training, tracking and assistance for our employees; and
• Highlighted the importance of Tribal consultation across the Agency.

 

NOAA Fleet Update - November 2013

The NOAA FLEET UPDATE – November 2013, provides the status of the ships and aircraft in NOAA’s fleet, including current location and planned mission(s), information on our Teacher at Sea program, as well as support provided for unmanned systems and to our federal partners.

NOAA’s ships and aircraft play a critical role in the collection of oceanographic, atmospheric, hydrographic, and fisheries data. NOAA’s fleet of research aircraft and ships are operated, managed, and maintained by NOAA’s Office of Marine and Aviation Operations (OMAO), which includes both civilians and the commissioned officers of the NOAA Commissioned Officer Corps (NOAA Corps), one of the seven Uniformed Services of the United States.
Aircraft fleetNOAA’s aircraft fleet at the OMAO Aircraft Operations Center in Tampa, Florida.

October 2013

 

Representative Bridenstine Visit to National Weather Center

On October 31, Representative Jim Bridenstine (R OK-1) visited and toured the National Weather Center in Norman, Oklahoma. The visit included a short tour of the NOAA National Weather Service Weather Forecast Office, Storm Prediction Center and Hazardous Weather Testbed, where Representative Bridenstine was briefed on their mission, programs, and activities.

 

Representative Gabbard Staff Visit Inouye Regional Center in Hawaii

On October 30, staff of Representative Tulsi Gabbard (D-HI-2) visited and toured NOAA’s Inouye Regional Center in Honolulu, Hawaii. Staff were briefed by NOAA officials on the Center’s key programs and partnerships.

 

Senator Murkowski Visits Research Institute in Alaska

On October 23, Senator Lisa Murkowski (R-AK) visited NOAA’s National Marine Fisheries Service, Ted Stevens Marine Research Institute in Juneau, Alaska, where she received a briefing on the Institute's mission, programs, and activities.

 

Due to the government shutdown, there are no other recent activities to report for October.

 

September 2013

 

Senate Hearing on Seafood Sustainability

On September 24, the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation, Subcommittee on Oceans, Atmosphere, Fisheries, and Coast Guard (Chair, Senator Mark Begich, D-AK) held a hearing on third-party certification of seafood as sustainable and the impacts on U.S. fishermen titled "The Role of Certification in Rewarding Sustainable Fishing." The Acting Assistant Administrator of NOAA’s National Marine Fisheries Service, Sam Rauch, testified and a copy of the written testimony may be viewed on the Congressional Testimony page.

Representative Shea-Porter and Congressional Staff Welcome NOAA Ship to its New Homeport

On September 21, Representative Carol Shea-Porter (D NH-1) and staff from the offices of Senator Kelly Ayotte (R-NH) and Senator Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH) joined officials from NOAA’s Office of Marine and Aviation Operations, National Ocean Service, and other honored guests at the ceremony hosted by the University of New Hampshire to welcome the NOAA Ship Ferdinand R. Hassler to its new homeport in New Castle, New Hampshire. Representative Shea-Porter and other guests were then provided a tour of the vessel to learn more about the mission, programs, and activities of the ship and meet members of the NOAA Commissioned Officer Corps and other crew who staff her.

Rep Shea-Porter

left to right: RDML David Score (OMAO Deputy Director for Operations and Deputy Director, NOAA Corps), Mica Stark (UNH Government Relations), Lisa MacFarlane (Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs, UNH), Rep. Carol Shea-Porter, Jan Nisbet (Sr. Vice Provost for Research, UNH), RDML Gerd Glang (Director, NOAA Office of Coast Survey), LCDR Ben Evans (Commanding Officer, NOAA Ship Ferdinand R. Hassler).
Photo: David Hall



Florida Delegation Staff Visit NOAA Ship

On September 20, staff from the Florida Delegation and local officials visited and toured the NOAA Ship Nancy Foster during a port call. The tour provided a chance for the staff to learn more about the mission, programs, and activities of the ship and to meet members of the NOAA Commissioned Officer Corps. The guests included:


Confirmation Hearing for Dr. Kathryn Sullivan

On September 19, the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation (Chair, Senator Jay Rockefeller, D-WV) held a hearing to consider the White House nominee to be NOAA’s Under Secretary of Commerce of Commerce for Oceans and Atmosphere and NOAA Administrator, Dr. Kathryn Sullivan. A copy of Dr. Sullivan’s written testimony may be viewed on the Congressional Testimony page.

House Hearing on Climate and Satellite Management

On September 19, the House Committee on Science, Space, and Technology; Subcommittees on Environment and Oversight (Chair, Representative Lamar Smith, R-TX-21) held a hearing entitled “Dysfunction in Management of Weather and Climate Satellites.” The purpose of this hearing was to provide Congress with an update on the polar-orbiting and geostationary weather satellite programs. The Assistant Administrator of NOAA’s National Environmental, Satellite, Data, and Information Service, Mary Kicza, testified and a copy of the written testimony may be viewed on the Congressional Testimony page.

Senate Meetings in Advance of Nomination Hearing

On September 13-18, a number of Members of the Senate met with NOAA’s Acting Under Secretary of Commerce for Oceans and Atmosphere, Dr. Kathryn Sullivan, in advance of her September 19 nomination hearing. These meetings provided the Senators, staff, and Dr. Sullivan an opportunity to discuss NOAA’s mission, programs, and activities as well as specific areas of interest or concern. Meetings occurred with the following Members:


Senator Begich Visits Weather Service Office

On September 16, Senator Mark Begich (D-AK) visited NOAA’s National Weather Service (NWS), Weather Service Office, in Nome, Alaska. Senator Begich was briefed by NWS officials on disaster recovery.

 

NOAA Fleet Update - September 2013

The NOAA FLEET UPDATE – September 2013, provides the status of the ships and aircraft in NOAA’s fleet, including current location and planned mission(s), information on our Teacher at Sea program, as well as support provided for unmanned systems and to our federal partners.

NOAA’s ships and aircraft play a critical role in the collection of oceanographic, atmospheric, hydrographic, and fisheries data. NOAA’s fleet of research aircraft and ships are operated, managed, and maintained by NOAA’s Office of Marine and Aviation Operations (OMAO), which includes both civilians and the commissioned officers of the NOAA Commissioned Officer Corps (NOAA Corps), one of the seven Uniformed Services of the United States.
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Sunrise over Kodiak, AK as seen from the bridge of NOAA Ship Oscar Dyson.
August 2013 – Photo Credit: Kathryn Hough, NOAA

 

Senate and House Staff Participate in Fall Plankton Survey

On September 11, staff from offices of the Mississippi Delegation travelled to Pascagoula, Mississippi to participate in the first part of the fall plankton survey that is conducted by the NOAA Ship Pisces. Staff from the following Member offices attended:

Senate Meetings in Advance of Nomination Hearing

On September 10-12, Members of the Senate, as well as Senate committee staff, met with NOAA’s Acting Under Secretary of Commerce for Oceans and Atmosphere, Dr. Kathryn Sullivan, in advance of her nomination hearing. The hearing has been scheduled for September 19. These meetings provided the Senators, staff, and Dr. Sullivan an opportunity to discuss NOAA’s mission, programs, and activities as well as specific areas of interest or concern. Dr. Sullivan met with the following Members and committee staff:

House Hearing on Rebuilding Fisheries

On September 11, the House Committee on Natural Resources (Chair, Representative Doc Hastings, D WA-4) held a hearing on the rebuilding timelines for U.S. fisheries as called for in the Magnuson-Stevens Act. The Acting Assistant Administrator of NOAA’s National Marine Fisheries Service, Sam Rauch, testified and a copy of the written testimony may be viewed on the Congressional Testimony page.

Representative Cole Visits National Weather Center in Oklahoma

On September 3, Representative Tom Cole (R OK-4) visited NOAA’s National Weather Service (NWS), National Weather Center, in Norman Oklahoma. Representative Cole is interested in the potential impact of a government shutdown on NWS activities in Norman, which include the Radar Operations Center, the Norman Weather Forecast Office, and the Storm Prediction Center.

 

August 2013

 

Senate Committee Staff Visit Science Center

On August 29, staff from the Senate Committee on Appropriations visited NOAA’s National Marine Fisheries Service, Northeast Fisheries Science Center in Woods Hole, Massachusetts. The committee staffer was provided an overview of the Center and its work, including what goes into fishery surveys, stock assessments, a demonstration of the Habitat Camera Mapping System that is used to map scallop and other fishery habitat, an explanation of the work done in the aging lab to determine the health of fish populations, information about electronic monitoring, and was provided a chance to talk and ask questions of stock assessment scientists.

Senator Whitehouse and Senator Reed Participate in National Estuaries Week

On August 29, Senator Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI) and Senator Jack Reed (D-RI) attended the National Estuarine Research Reserve Association’s (NERRA) celebration of estuaries at the Narragansett Bay National Estuarine Research Reserve on Prudence Island, Rhode Island. NERRA officials presented both Senators with Distinguished Service Awards for their national and state leadership efforts in protecting our nation’s estuaries. NOAA’s Acting Under Secretary of Commerce for Oceans and Atmosphere, Dr. Kathryn Sullivan, attended the event to provide remarks and toured the NERRA facilities and sites to learn more about estuarine research, restoration, and education efforts.

House Committee Staff Visit Pacific-Northwest Facilities

On August 26-29, staff for the House Committee on Natural Resources visited several NOAA facilities in the Pacific-Northwest. During the tour, the staffer visited the Northwest Fisheries Science Center, the Western Regional Center and Pacific Marine Environmental Laboratory in Seattle; the Marine and Operations Center - Pacific and the NOAA campus in Newport; and the Fisheries Northwest Regional Office in Portland.

 

Rhode Island Delegation Visits Dam Removal Project

On August 27, Members and staff of the Rhode Island Delegation joined officials from NOAA’s National Marine Fisheries Service and our partners including the Wood-Pawcatuck Watershed Association, for a tour and discussion of habitat restoration at the Kenyon Mill Dam, which is being removed as part of larger fish habitat restoration project along the Wood-Pawcatuck rivers. These projects will restore access to 1,300 acres of spawning and rearing habitat for river herring, American shad, and American eel. The Members and staff who attended included:

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Senator Whitehouse, Senator Reed, and other guests at the event.

 

Senate Committee Staff Visit NOAA Facilities

On August 26-27, staff from the Senate Committee on Appropriations visited several NOAA facilities in, and around, Mobile, Alabama. The staffer visited the NOAA Gulf of Mexico Disaster Response Center; the Weeks Bay National Estuarine Research Reserve; and the National Weather Service, Weather Forecast Office.

 

Maryland Delegation Staff Visit Chesapeake Bay Office

On August 22, Senate and House staff from the Maryland Delegation traveled to Annapolis, Maryland, where they were joined by officials from NOAA’s Chesapeake Bay Office to see bottom mapping of habitat complexity and fish sampling to establish pre-restoration baseline for $90 million multi-year, multi-partner oyster restoration project in Choptank River complex. This is a follow up visit to a successful briefing earlier this summer that had an on-water component which was postponed due to weather. Staff from the following Member offices attended:

MD staff

Congressional staffers assisted NOAA with habitat mapping in Chesapeake Bay. Standing on the R/V Potawaugh from left to right are: Jim Notter (Hoyer staff), Helena Mastrogianis (Sarbanes staff), and NOAA's Jay Lazar, David Bruce, Stephanie Westby and Peyton Robertson.

 

Representative Palazzo Visits Fisheries Lab

On August 22, Representative Steven Palazzo (R MS-4) visited NOAA’s National Marine Fisheries Lab in Pascagoula, Mississippi, for a briefing on the Lab’s mission, programs, and activities.

Palazzo

Representative Palazzo inspecting some of the tools used by Lab staff.

 

Senator Hirono Staff Visit NOAA Facilities

On August 20, staff for Senator Hirono visited several NOAA facilities in Hawaii including the Marine Operations Center - Pacific Islands, the Inouye Regional Center, Office of Law Enforcement, Pacific Regional Climate Services, and met with staff from the National Weather Service, National Marine Sanctuary program, and regional program.

 

Representative Bridenstine Visits NWS Facilities

On August 20, Representative Jim Bridenstine (R OK-1) toured NOAA’s National Weather Service (NWS), Arkansas Basin River Forecast Center and Weather Forecast Office in Tulsa, Oklahoma, where he was briefed by NWS officials on NOAA’s Weather Ready Nation initiative.

 

Connecticut Delegation Staff Visit Aquaculture Lab

On August 19, staff from offices of the Connecticut Delegation visited NOAA’s National Marine Fisheries Service, Milford Shellfish Aquaculture Lab, in Milford, Connecticut, where they were briefed by NOAA officials on the Lab’s research and partnerships with the shellfish industry.

 

Representative Shea-Porter Briefing on Coastal Flooding

On August 19, Representative Carol She-Porter (D NH-1) was joined by staff from NOAA’s National Weather Service, Weather Forecast Office in Portland, Maine, at a meeting in Hampton, New Hampshire, that discussed the community’s success in hazard mitigation regarding coastal inundation.

 

Senate Staff Visit Facilities in Hawaii

On August 16 and 17, staff from the Senate Committee on Appropriations and the office of Senator Thad Cochran (R-MS) visited NOAA staff and facilities on the Big Island, Hawaii. The tour included a visit to the Mauna Loa Observatory, which is an atmospheric baseline station of the Earth System Research Laboratory, Global Monitoring Division. Staff also visited the National Energy Laboratory of Hawaii Authority for a tour of some aquaculture facilities where they were briefed by officials from NOAA’s Office of Oceanic and Atmospheric Research on local aquaculture activities.

 

Governor Nixon Visits WFO

On August 14, Governor Jay Nixon (D-MO) visited NOAA’s National Weather Service, Weather Forecast Office (WFO) in Springfield, Missouri, where he was joined by several other top state officials that deal with public safety. WFO staff provided a briefing on the mission, programs, and activities of the WFO to ensure citizens are weather ready, as well as the recent record-breaking flash flooding Missouri recently had.

Nixon

Governor Nixon (at the head of the table) and other officials being briefed at the WFO.

 

Transcipt Now Available for Second Tribal Consultation Webinar

On August 13, 2013, NOAA's Tribal Liaison, Linda Belton, hosted and moderated a second webinar regarding the draft handbook "NOAA Procedures for Government-to-Government Consultation with Federally Recognized Indian Tribes and Alaska Natives."  As announced in the June 24 Federal Register, this webinar gave the public and tribal representatives an opportunity to review and comment on the draft notice before the final document is approved. The transcript of the August 13 webinar is now available. Webinar Transcript - 081313 [pdf]

 

NOAA Fleet Update - August 2013

The NOAA FLEET UPDATE – August 2013, provides the status of the ships and aircraft in NOAA’s fleet, including current location and planned mission(s), information on our Teacher at Sea program, as well as support provided for unmanned systems and to our federal partners. NOAA’s ships and aircraft play a critical role in the collection of oceanographic, atmospheric, hydrographic, and fisheries data. NOAA’s fleet of research aircraft and ships are operated, managed, and maintained by NOAA’s Office of Marine and Aviation Operations (OMAO), which includes both civilians and the commissioned officers of the NOAA Commissioned Officer Corps (NOAA Corps), one of the seven Uniformed Services of the United States.

Hassler
NOAA Ship Ferdinand R. Hassler, homeported in New Castle, New Hampshire

 

Senator Nelson Hosts Roundtable on Water Quality

On August 15, Senator Bill Nelson (D-FL) hosted a roundtable discussion on water quality and management issues in Stuart, Florida. Representatives from NOAA’s National Marine Fisheries Service joined the roundtable to speak about marine mammal stranding and management issues. Other roundtable participants included representatives from the Florida Atlantic University Harbor Branch's Marine Mammal Program, Florida Oceanographic Society, and St. John's Water Management District.

 

Representative Steve Southerland Visits Panama City Lab

On August 14, Representative Steve Southerland (R FL-2) visited and toured NOAA’s National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS), Southeast Fisheries Science Center, Panama City Lab, in Panama City, Florida. NMFS scientists briefed him on the lab’s research and operations.

 

Senate Field Hearing on Water Flows in Apalachicola Bay

On August 13, the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science and Transportation (Chair, Senator Jay Rockefeller, D-WV) held a hearing, “Effects of Water Flows on Apalachicola Bay: Short and Long Term Perspectives,” in Apalachicola, Florida. Senator Bill Nelson (D-FL) presided over the hearing.

The Acting Director of NOAA’s National Marine Fisheries Service, Office of Sustainable Fisheries, Emily Menashes, testified on the process for DOC/ NOAA making fishery disaster declarations and this week's disaster declaration for the Gulf of Mexico oyster fishery, primarily the fishery based in Apalachicola Bay. A copy of the written testimony may be viewed on the Congressional Testimony page.

 

Representative Bonamici Staff Visits Weather Forecast Office

On August 13, staff of Representative Suzanne Bonamici (D OR-1) toured NOAA’s National Weather Service (NWS), Weather Forecast Office and River Forecast Center in Portland, Oregon.  They were briefed on the Offices' operations, service to constituents, and were briefed by NWS officials on NOAA’s Weather Ready Nation initiative.

 

House Staff Visit to NOAA Ship Ferdinand R. Hassler

On August 8, staff from the offices of Representative Carol Shea-Porter (D NH-1) and Representative Ann Kuster (D NH-2) toured the NOAA Ship Ferdinand R. Hassler in New Castle, New Hampshire. Staff received an update on the important work that NOAA’s fleet does and had the chance to meet some of the men and women of the NOAA Commissioned Officer Corps – one of the nation’s seven uniformed services.

 

Representative Brooks Visits Weather Forecast Office

On August 7, Representative Mo Brooks (R AL-5) toured NOAA’s National Weather Service (NWS), Weather Forecast Office in Huntsville, Alabama, and was briefed by NWS officials on NOAA’s Weather Ready Nation initiative.

 

Representative Capps Visits Channel Islands Sanctuary

On August 6, Representative Lois Capps (D CA-24) was joined by the Assistant Administrator of NOAA’s National Ocean Service, Dr. Holly Bamford, and officials from NOAA’s Office of National Marine Sanctuaries and the University of California Santa Barbara to celebrate the opening of the Ocean Science Education Building, housing new headquarters for Channel Islands National Marine Sanctuary.

 

Senate and House Staff Visit NOAA’s Aircraft Operations Center

On August 2, staff for Members of the Florida Delegation visited NOAA’s Office of Marine and Aviation Operations (OMAO), Aircraft Operations Center (AOC) located at MacDill Air Force Base in Tampa, Florida, home of our P3-Hurricane Hunters and other aircraft, to join members of the NOAA Commissioned Officer Corps for a Change of Command Ceremony. During the ceremony, Captain Randy TeBeest was honored for his time as Commander of AOC and Captain Harris Halverson was installed as the new Commander.Staff from the following offices attended:

P3

WP-3D (N42RF) while flying in close proximity with the National Science Foundation aircraft, NCAR C-130.
July 2013 - Photo Credit: Lynne Gratz of UW Bothell

 

Transcipt Now Available for First Tribal Consultation Webinar

 

On July 17, 2013, NOAA's Tribal Liaison, Linda Belton, hosted and moderated a webinar regarding the draft handbook "NOAA Procedures for Government-to-Government Consultation with Federally Recognized Indian Tribes and Alaska Natives."  As announced in the June 24 Federal Register, this webinar gave the public and tribal representatives an opportunity to review and comment on the draft notice before the final document is approved. The transcript of the July 17 webinar is now available. Webinar Transcript [pdf]

 

BREAKING NEWS FROM CAPITOL HILL AND THE WHITE HOUSE
On August 1, the Senate approved the nomination of Dr. Mark E. Schaefer, to be NOAA’s Assistant Secretary of Commerce for Oceans and Atmosphere.

Also on August 1, the White House announced that the President had nominated Dr. Kathryn Sullivan to be NOAA’s Under Secretary of Commerce of Commerce for Oceans and Atmosphere and NOAA Administrator. The nomination will be considered by the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation after they return from recess on September 9, exact date TBD.

 

July 2013

 

Senate Committee Markup

On July 30, the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation (Chair, Senator Jay Rockefeller, D-WV) held a markup and passed the following bills and nominee:  


House Committe Staff Visit National Center for Weather and Climate Prediction

On July 30, staff from the House Committee on Appropriations toured NOAA National Weather Service (NWS), National Center for Weather and Climate Prediction, and were briefed by the Assistant Administrator of NOAA’s National Weather Service, Dr. Louis Uccellini, on NOAA’s National Centers for Environmental Prediction Center for Satellite Applications and Research, Satellite Analysis Branch, and Air Resources Lab.

 

Representative Scott Hosts Event at NOAA’s Marine Operations Center – Atlantic

On July 26, Representative Bobby Scott (D VA-3) hosted an event in Norfolk, Virginia, for a tour of NOAA’s Office of Marine and Aviation Operations (OMAO), Marine Operations Center – Atlantic (MOC-A) and the NOAA Ships Thomas Jefferson and Ferdinand R Hassler. During the visit to MOC-A, Representative Scott was joined by Representative Rob Wittman (R VA-1); staff for Senator Tim Kaine (D-VA); and staff from the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation; as well as NOAA officials for a briefing on OMAO, the NOAA Corps, and NOAA’s hydro and mapping programs, and a tour of the ships.

RepScott

Left to right: LT Samuel Greenaway, Representative Scott, Rear Admiral David Score,
Representative Wittman, LT Megan Guberski, CAPT Anita Lopez

 

Senator Murphy Hosts Roundtable on Severe Weather and Resiliency

On July 26, Senator Christopher Murphy (D-CT) hosted a roundtable discussion in Milford, Connecticut, to bring together local, state and federal leaders to discuss how storms like Irene and Sandy impacted the Connecticut shoreline communities and how communities and the state are preparing for future storms. An official from NOAA’s National Marine Fisheries Service, Northeast Fisheries Science Center Milford Laboratory, joined the panel to speak about storm impacts and provided information on what NOAA can do to support coastal resiliency. Additional panelists included local mayors, emergency management directors, state legislators, environmental activists and FEMA representatives.


Representative Scalise Visits Weather Forecast Office

On July 26, Representative Steve Scalise (R OK-1) toured NOAA’s National Weather Service (NWS), Weather Forecast Office in New Orleans, Louisiana, and was briefed by NWS officials on NOAA’s Weather Ready Nation initiative.

Scalise
Representative Scalise holding one of the weather balloons used by the Forecast Office.

 

Senate and House Staff Briefing on Puget Sound and NOAA Ships

On July 25, Senate and House staff from the Washington Delegation joined NOAA regional officials and staff for a briefing and roundtable discussion on NOAA’s work in the Puget Sound. After the briefing, the staff toured the NOAA Ship Fairweather, where they were briefed by members of the NOAA Commissioned Officer Corps on the ship’s mission, programs, and activities. Staff from the following offices attended the event:

 

Confirmation Hearing for Dr. Mark Schaefer

On July 24, the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation (Chair, Senator Jay Rockefeller, D-WV) held a hearing to consider the White House nominee to be NOAA’s Assistant Secretary for Oceans and Atmosphere, Dr. Mark Schaefer.

 

Senate Commerce Committee Magnuson-Stevens Act Reauthorization Hearing

On July 23, the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation, Subcommittee on Oceans, Atmosphere, Fisheries, and Coast Guard (Chair, Senator Mark Begich, D-AK) held a hearing to provide an overview on the progress to date and the ongoing challenges faced in transitioning to sustainable fisheries management in the New England and Mid-Atlantic since the enactment of the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Reauthorization Act of 2006.

The Regional Administrator for NOAA’s National Marine Fisheries Service, Northeast Regional Office, John Bullard, testified and a copy of the written testimony may be viewed on the Congressional Testimony page of the OLIA website.

 

Senate Appropriations Committee FY14 Spending Bill Markup

On July 18, the Senate Committee on Appropriations (Chair, Senator Barbara Mikulski, D-MD) held a markup and approved a fiscal 2014 Commerce-Justice-Science bill that would provide $5.6 billion to NOAA, boosting funding for weather forecasting, storm warnings and fisheries management. A recording of the markup (if available) may be viewed on the Committee’s website.

On July 18, the Senate Committee on Appropriations (Chair, Senator Barbara Mikulski, D-MD) held a markup and approved a fiscal 2014 Commerce-Justice-Science bill that would provide $5.6 billion to NOAA, boosting funding for weather forecasting, storm warnings and fisheries management. A recording of the markup (if available) may be viewed on the Committee’s website.

 

House Appropriations Committee FY14 Spending Bill Markup

On July 17, the House Committee on Appropriations (Chair, Representative Hal Rogers, R KY-5) held a markup and approved a fiscal 2014 Commerce-Justice-Science bill that would provide a total of $4.9 billion to NOAA, which is $524 million below the Obama administration’s 2014 request. A recording of the markup (if available) may be viewed on the Committee’s website.

 

Senate Appropriations Subcommittee FY14 Spending Bill Markup

On July 16, the Senate Committee on Appropriations, Subcommittee on Commerce, Justice, Science, and Related Agencies (Chair, Senator Barbara Mikulski, D-MD ) held a markup and approved a draft fiscal 2014 Commerce-Justice-Science bill that would provide a total of $5.6 billion to NOAA. A recording of the markup (if available) may be viewed on the Committee’s website.

 

Congressional Staff Chesapeake Bay Field Briefing

On July 12, Senate and House staff from the Maryland Delegation traveled to Annapolis, Maryland, where they were be briefed by officials from NOAA’s Chesapeake Bay Office on NOAA's education partnerships, the Chesapeake Bay interpretative buoy system, and the extensive habitat restoration work being done by NOAA and its partners in the Chesapeake Bay. Staff learned first-hand how important these science and education investments are to the larger state and national community. Staff from the following Member offices were briefed:

staff
Left to right: Helena Mastrogianis, Representative Sarbanes (D MD-3); Jim Notter, Representative Hoyer (D MD-5); Josh Klein, Senator Cardin (D-MD); Peyton Robertson, NCBO Director; David Bruce, NCBO Scientist

 

Senator King Staff Visit WFO

On July 9, staff for Senator Angus King (I-ME) visited NOAA’s National Weather Service, Weather Forecast Office (WFO) in Gray, Maine to present a 40-year length of service pin to the daughter of John Lunt, who worked for the U.S. Weather Bureau from 1929 to 1970. Senator King’s staff were also briefed on the mission, programs, and activities of the WFO.

staff
Left to right: MIC Hendricus Lulofs, Ms. Lunt, Dan Reardon from Senator Kings office.

 

Senator Mikulski Briefing on Weather Enterprise Improvements

On July 2, Senator Barbara Mikulski (D MD) visited the NOAA Center for Weather and Climate Prediction (NCWCP) in College Park, Maryland, to attend an event highlighting the importance for NOAA's role in the weather enterprise. NOAA’s Acting Under Secretary of Commerce for Oceans and Atmosphere and NOAA Administrator, Dr. Kathryn Sullivan; the Assistant Administrator for NOAA’s National Weather Service, Dr. Louis Uccellini; and the Secretary of the Department of Commerce, Penny Pritzker, joined the Senator at the event which included a briefing on weather service improvements and how NOAA integrates these efforts across line offices. The event also included a press-invited operations floor tour and a press conference in the Center's briefing room.

Sulliva
Left to right: Dr. Uccellini, Secretary Pritzker, Senator Mikulski (in front), Dr. Sullivan

 

NOAA Fleet Update - July 2013

The NOAA FLEET UPDATE – July 2013, provides the status of the ships and aircraft in NOAA’s fleet, including current location and planned mission(s), information on our Teacher at Sea program, as well as support provided for unmanned systems and to our federal partners. NOAA’s ships and aircraft play a critical role in the collection of oceanographic, atmospheric, hydrographic, and fisheries data. NOAA’s fleet of research aircraft and ships are operated, managed, and maintained by NOAA’s Office of Marine and Aviation Operations (OMAO), which includes both civilians and the commissioned officers of the NOAA Commissioned Officer Corps (NOAA Corps), one of the seven Uniformed Services of the United States.

June 2013

 

House Hearing on Red Snapper

On June 27, the House Committee on Natural Resources (Chair, Representative Doc Hastings, R WA-4) held a hearing to discuss management of red snapper in the Gulf of Mexico. The Assistant Administrator of NOAA’s National Marine Fisheries Service (performing the functions and duties of the Assistant Secretary of Conservation and Management), Eric Schwaab, testified and a copy of the written testimony may be viewed on the Congressional Testimony page.

 

House Hearing on Weather Forecasting

On June 26, the House Committee on Science, Space, and Technology, Subcommittee on Environment (Chair, Representative Chris Stewart, R UT-2) held a hearing titled "Restoring U.S. Leadership in Weather Forecasting, Part 2." NOAA’s Acting Under Secretary of Commerce for Oceans and Atmosphere and NOAA Administrator, Dr. Kathryn Sullivan, testified and a copy of the written testimony may be viewed on the Congressional Testimony page.

 

Representative Bonamici Visits Newport Facilities

On June 22, Representative Suzanne Bonamici (D OR-1) visited the Oregon State University Hatfield Marine Science Center in Newport, Oregon, and toured the collocated NOAA facilities and programs as well as NOAA’s Office of Marine and Aviation Operations, Marine Operations Center – Pacific. Representative Bonamici was briefed by NOAA staff and NOAA Corps officers on the missions, programs, and activities of our Newport-based facilities.

Tribal Consultation Handbook

June 21, 2013 - NOAA announces the availability of and request for comments on the Draft NOAA Procedures for Government-to-Government Consultation With Federally Recognized Indian Tribes.  This Draft Handbook is intended to assist NOAA staff in conducting effective government-to-government consultations. Written comments must be received on or before11:59 p.m., EST, 60 days after date of publication in the Federal Register. See official Federal Register notice published June 24, 2013.

Written comments may be sent by any of the following methods:

  • Email to the following address: noaa.tribalhandbook@noaa.gov
  • Mail or hand deliver to Heather Sagar, Department of Commerce (DOC), National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, 14th and Constitution Avenue NW., Room 51027, Washington, DC 20230. Mark the outside of the envelope “Draft NOAA Tribal Handbook”; or
  • Fax at (202) 482-1844.

For additional information on the Draft Handbook, contact Heather Sagar by phone at (202) 482-1568 or by fax at (202) 482-1844.

As a part of continued outreach efforts to Tribes on the Draft Handbook [PDF], NOAA is conducting two webinars to discuss the policy and gather input and comments from tribal leaders. The two webinars are scheduled on Wednesday, July 17 and Tuesday, August 13 from 3:00pm – 4:00pm EST. Please note that registration is required for the webinars. We hope that you will review the handbook, participate in the webinars and provide NOAA with your views and evaluation of the proposed procedures in the Handbook.  

The two national webinars will be held according to the following schedule:

Wednesday, July 17, 2013
3:00 – 4:00 EST
2:00 – 3:00 CT
1:00 – 2:00 MT
12:00 – 1:00 PT
11:00 – 12:00 AKT

Registration for the July 17th webinar may be accessed by CLICKING HERE
Conference number: 1496093
Passcode: 5272360 

Tuesday, August 13, 2013
3:00 – 4:00 ET
2:00 – 3:00 CT
1:00 – 2:00 MT
12:00 – 1:00 PT
11:00 – 12:00 AKT

Registration for the August 13th webinar may be accessed by CLICKING HERE
Conference number: 1496113
Passcode: 5272360 

 

NOAA Announces Tribal Liaison

On June 20, NOAA formally announced the appointment of Linda Belton, Senior Advisor for Intergovernmental Affairs to be the NOAA Tribal Liaison in keeping with the authorities and requirements of Executive Order 13175, DAO 218-8 and the Tribal Consultation and Coordination Policy for the Department of Commerce. As Tribal Liaison, Linda will work to ensure meaningful and timely Government to Government consultation with affected federally recognized Indian Tribes and Alaska Natives that will include:

Linda may be contacted at 202-482-5447 or Linda.Belton@noaa.gov.

 

Senate and House Staff Attend Meetings on Response and Restoration

On June 17, 18, and 20, Senate and House staff participated in a series of public meetings and were joined by officials from NOAA’s National Ocean Service, Office of Response and Restoration. These meetings focused on the Urban Waters Federal Partnership, which aims to stimulate regional and local economies, create local jobs, improve quality of life, and protect Americans' health by revitalizing urban waterways in under-served communities across the country. The staff who attended included the offices of:
June 17 – Camden, New Jersey

June 18 – Chester, Pennsylvania and June 20, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

 

NOAA Fleet Update - June 2013

The NOAA FLEET UPDATE – June 2013, provides the status of the ships and aircraft in NOAA’s fleet, including current location and planned mission(s), information on our Teacher at Sea program, as well as support provided for unmanned systems and to our federal partners. NOAA’s ships and aircraft play a critical role in the collection of oceanographic, atmospheric, hydrographic, and fisheries data. NOAA’s fleet of research aircraft and ships are operated, managed, and maintained by NOAA’s Office of Marine and Aviation Operations (OMAO), which includes both civilians and the commissioned officers of the NOAA Commissioned Officer Corps (NOAA Corps), one of the seven Uniformed Services of the United States.


House Hearing on Legislation

On June 13, the House Committee on Natural Resources, Subcommittee on Fisheries, Wildlife, Oceans and Insular Affairs (Chair, Representative John Fleming, R LA-4) held a legislative hearing on six bills for which they asked NOAA to provide testimony. The bills included:

The Director of NOAA’s National Ocean Service, Office of Coast Survey, Rear Admiral Gerd Glang, testified and a copy of the written testimony may be viewed on the Congressional Testimony page.

Jill
On June 11, famed ocean explorer and director, Mr. James Cameron, testified before a Senate hearing tited, "Deep Sea Challenge: Innovative Partnerships in Ocean Observation." After the hearing, OLIA's Hollings Scholar, Jill Goatcher (second from left), and some of her fellow Hollings and Sea Grant Fellow colleagues, had a chance to meet Mr. Cameron.

 

Senate and House Members Meet Dr. Schaefer

On June 10-14, a number of Members of the Senate and House and congressional staff recently met with the White House nominee to be Assistant Secretary for Oceans and Atmosphere, Dr. Mark Schaefer, in advance of his confirmation hearing, the date of which is TBD. Below are the recent meet-and-greets noting date and Member, staff or Committee.

Representative Huffman Visits Veterans Corps Site

On June 8, Representative Jared Huffman (D CA-2) joined officials from NOAA’s National Marine Fisheries Service for a visit to the NOAA Veterans Corps site in Arcata, California, where he met the veterans and project partners.

 

Senate Hearing on Gulf Restoration

On June 6, the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation (Senator Bill Nelson, D-FL, will Chair) held a hearing titled “Gulf Restoration: A Progress Report Three Years after the Deepwater Horizon Disaster.” The hearing examined the progress and challenges thus far in restoring the Gulf of Mexico’s ecosystem and coastal communities following the disastrous 2010 explosion and subsequent oil spill. NOAA’s General Counsel, Lois Schiffer, testified and a copy of the written testimony may be viewed on the Congressional Testimony page of the OLIA website.

 

FY 2014 Budget Briefings for Congress

A number of Members of the Senate and House and congressional staff have been briefed by NOAA leadership on the FY 2014 NOAA Budget Request (and/or the Line Office/Program FY 2014 request). Below are the briefings recently noting date, Member or staff, briefer(s), and OLIA Lead(s):

June 5

June 6

Senator Cantwell, Senator Hagan, and Congressional Staff Attend Fish Fry

On June 5, Senator Maria Cantwell (D-WA), Senator Kay Hagan (D-NC) and over 30 congressional staff joined NOAA’s Acting Under Secretary of Commerce for Oceans and Atmosphere and NOAA Administrator, Dr. Kathryn Sullivan, and other officials at the 38th Annual NOAA Fish Fry.

 

Capitol Hill Oceans Week – Dr. Sullivan Keynote

On June 4, NOAA’s Acting Under Secretary of Commerce for Oceans and Atmosphere and NOAA Administrator, Dr. Kathryn Sullivan, provided the welcome and keynote address at Capitol Hill Oceans Week (CHOW) as she addressed Healthy Oceans and Coasts for a Resilient America. During CHOW, which ran June 4-6, Members of Congress and NOAA officials participated in a series of panels and discussions and were be joined by all interested Senate and House staff.

 

Governor Nixon Visits WFO

On June 1, Governor Jay Nixon (D-MO) and state and local officials visited NOAA’s National Weather Service, Weather Forecast Office (WFO) in St. Louis, Missouri, where they were briefed on the recent tornado and upcoming river flooding.

 

May 2013

 

Florida Delegation Attends Hurricane Preparedness Event

On May 31, Senator Bill Nelson (D-FL), Representative Debbie Wasserman-Shultz (D FL-23), Representative Joe Garcia (D FL-26), and other Members of the Florida Delegation attended the a hurricane preparedness press conference during the annual hurricane season media day at NOAA’ National Weather Service (NWS), National Hurricane Center in Miami, Florida. The Delegation was joined by officials from NWS and the Administrator of the Federal Emergency Management Agency, Craig Fugate.

 

Representative Wasserman-Shultz Attends Hurricane Preparedness Event

On May 31, Representative Debbie Wasserman-Shultz (D FL-23) hosted a meeting with district decision-makers regarding the approaching 2013 hurricane season, followed by a press conference in Doral, Florida, where she was joined by officials from NOAA’s National Weather Service.

 

Senator Murkowski Visits WFO

On May 31, Senator Lisa Murkowski (R-AK) visited NOAA’s National Weather Service (NWS) Alaska Regional Headquarters and Weather Forecast Office (WFO) in Anchorage, Alaska. During the visit Senator Murkowski was briefed on NWS’ products and services for Alaska residents and about their observing infrastructure.

 

Senate and House Staff Briefing on Hurricane Outlook

On May 23, all interested Senate and House staff were briefed by the Assistant Administrator of NOAA’s National Weather Service (NWS), Dr. Louis Uccellini, and the Assistant Administrator of NOAA’s National Ocean Service, Dr. Holly Bamford, as well as other federal officials on the 2013 NOAA Hurricane Seasonal Outlook & Flood Resiliency panel. The briefing, hosted by Senator Charles Schumer (D-NY), highlighted proactive measures each agency is taking to better prepare our citizens and communities for the 2013 Hurricane Season. Presenters discuseds their efforts to prepare for, mitigate, and respond to hurricanes. The briefing included NOAA's announcement of the 2013 Atlantic Hurricane Season Outlook forecast. An additional discussion focused on flood mitigation, community resilience, and tools that NOAA and other agencies provide.

 

Senate Confirmation Hearing – Commerce Secretary

On May 23, the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation (Chair, Senator Jay Rockefeller, D-WV) held a hearing on the confirmation of the President’s nominee to be the Secretary of Commerce, Ms. Penny Pritzker. Ranking Member, Senator John Thune (R-SD) said he expects a vote on the Senate floor after the Memorial Day recess.

 

House Hearing on Magnuson and Data Collection

On May 21, the House Committee on Natural Resources, Subcommittee on Fisheries, Wildlife, Oceans, and Insular Affairs (Chair, Representative John Fleming, R LA-4) held an oversight hearing titled, “Data collection issues in relation to the reauthorization of the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act.” The Chief Science Advisor and Director of Scientific Programs for NOAA’s National Marine Fisheries Service, Dr. Richard Merrick, testified and a copy of the written testimony may be viewed on the Congressional Testimony page of the OLIA website.

 

Representative Boustany Attends Hurricane Season Forum – Morgan City

On May 13, Representative Charles Boustany (R LA-3) attended a public forum in Morgan City, Louisiana on the 2013 Hurricane Season at which they discussed the needs and preparations for the public of south Louisiana to take in dealing with tropical cyclones threatening the state. Representative Boustany was joined by officials from NOAA’s National Weather Service, Weather Forecast Office and NOAA’s National Ocean Service for this forum, one of three currently scheduled.

 

Senate and House Staff and State Local Officials Join Dr. Sullivan At MOC-P

On May 13, staff from the offices of Senator Ron Wyden (D-OR), Senator Jeff Merkley (D-OR), and Representative Kurt Schrader (D OR-5) as well as state and local officials joined NOAA’s Acting Under Secretary of Commerce for Oceans and Atmosphere and NOAA Administrator, Dr. Kathryn Sullivan, at NOAA’s Office of Marine and Aviation Operations, Marine Operations Center – Pacific (MOC-P) in Newport, Oregon. During the visit they received a tour of MOC-P and then had a meeting with Dr. Sullivan for an update on NOAA, our mission, programs, and activities.

 

Representative Boustany Attends Hurricane Season Forum – Lake Charles

On May 10, Representative Charles Boustany (R LA-3) attended a public forum in Lake Charles, Louisiana on the 2013 Hurricane Season at which they discussed the needs and preparations for the public of south Louisiana to take in dealing with tropical cyclones threatening the state. Representative Boustany was joined by officials from NOAA’s National Weather Service, Weather Forecast Office and NOAA’s National Ocean Service for this forum, one of three currently scheduled.

 

Representative Israel Hurricane Season Preparedness Event

On May 6, Representative Steve Israel (D NY-3) hosted a hurricane season preparedness event for the emergency management and first-responder community in western Long Island, New York. Representative Israel invited officials from the NOAA National Weather Service, Weather Forecast Office in New York City to participate.

 

Representative Palazzo Visits Buoy Center

On May 2, Representative Steven Palazzo (R MS-4) visited NOAA’s National Weather Service, National Data Buoy Center in Stennis, Mississippi. During the visit Representative Palazzo was briefed on the Center’s mission, programs, and activities.

 

Representative Polis Visits Boulder Facilities

On May 2, Representative Jared Polis (D CO-2) visited NOAA’s David Skaggs Research Center in Boulder, Colorado, where he attended a brown bag discussion hosted by the Boulder Labs Diversity Council.

RepPolis
Representative Polis speaking to NOAA Employees.


Hawaii Delegation Meeting on Coastal Zone Management

On May 1, staff for Senator Mazie Hirono (D-HI) and Representative Tulsi Gabbard (D HI-2) joined statte officials and representatives from NOAA’s National Ocean Service in Honolulu, Hawaii, for a meeting planned by the Hawaii State office of Planning on the Hawaii Coastal Zone Management Program. The meeting provided an opportunity for congressional representatives and federal, state, and local partners and stakeholders to ask questions about the program.

 

Senator Coats Staff Tour of WFO

On May 1, staff for Senator Dan Coats (R-IN) toured NOAA’s National Weather Service, Weather Forecast Office (WFO) in Sterling, Virginia. During the tour, the staff were provided a briefing on the WFO’s mission, programs, and activities.

 

FY 2014 Budget Briefings for Congress

A number of Members of the Senate and House and congressional staff have been briefed by NOAA leadership on the FY 2014 NOAA Budget Request (and/or the Line Office/Program FY 2014 request). Below are the briefings recently noting date, Member or staff, briefer(s), and OLIA Lead(s):

May 17

May 16

May 15

May 14

May 9

May 8

May 7

May 2

May 1

 

April 2013

 

 

April 30