July 27, 2000
S. 1912 - Electronic Commerce Technology Promotion Act
The Administration opposes Senate passage of S. 1912, as reported by the
Senate Commerce, Science, and Transportation Committee. The Administration
strongly supports electronic commerce and actions that promote the use of
electronic commerce by Federal agencies, and has proposed increased funding
in the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) to work with
small- and medium-sized enterprises as they adopt e-commerce technologies
and to support the industry-led development of standards for e-business and
manufacturing supply chains. It appears, however, that S. 1912 gives NIST
a role that goes well beyond its existing responsibilities in the standards
and technology area and goes well beyond the scope of the activities with
the private sector for which the Administration has sought funding.
(Frist (R) Tennessee and 2 cosponsors)
Specifically, while the Administration would support the new NIST Center
providing information about technologies in order to assist decision-making
on electronic commerce within the government, the Administration opposes
giving the Center a role in addressing other issues relating to e-commerce.
NIST's focus should properly remain on key standards and technology issues,
such as computer security and interoperability.
The Administration is ready to work with the Congress so that S. 1912 could
be revised to address the concerns identified above.