Congress leaves tech issues on ice

Congress soon will hit the campaign trail, leaving behind several brewing IT issues.

Among this Congress' tech-friendly accomplishments is the law President Clinton signed last week that will increase the number of skilled technical workers allowed into the United States under the H-1B visa program.

And earlier this month, Congress and Clinton passed the Electronic Signatures in Global and National Commerce Act (E-Sign), ushering in the use of digital signatures.

But several high-profile issues have been left sitting on the table for lawmakers returning in January:

    * Internet taxation. The current ban on new taxes expires next year. Despite efforts by the Advisory Commission on Electronic Commerce, no political consensus has been reached.

    * Internet privacy. Consumers are worried about online security, and some vendors are warming to the idea of new laws. Several bills are pending.

    * Tech training tax break. A bill seeking credits for corporations to build up the sagging tech workforce remains stalled.

    * Research and development tax credit. The current corporate break lasts only for a five-year period.

    * Tech education initiatives. The New Millennium Classrooms Act supported by industry would put more technical resources in schools. This bill passed the Senate.

Nancy Weil, a correspondent for the IDG News Service, contributed to this report.

Copyright 2000 InfoWorld, International Data Group Inc. All rights reserved. Distributed by IDG News Service.


  • Defense
    Ryan D. McCarthy being sworn in as Army Secretary Oct. 10, 2019. (Photo credit: Sgt. Dana Clarke/U.S. Army)

    Army wants to spend nearly $1B on cloud, data by 2025

    Army Secretary Ryan McCarthy said lack of funding or a potential delay in the JEDI cloud bid "strikes to the heart of our concern."

  • Congress
    Rep. Jim Langevin (D-R.I.) at the Hack the Capitol conference Sept. 20, 2018

    Jim Langevin's view from the Hill

    As chairman of of the Intelligence and Emerging Threats and Capabilities subcommittee of the House Armed Services Committe and a member of the House Homeland Security Committee, Rhode Island Democrat Jim Langevin is one of the most influential voices on cybersecurity in Congress.

Stay Connected


Sign up for our newsletter.

I agree to this site's Privacy Policy.