Rosen-Backed Cybersecurity and Wildfire Bills Advance Out of Senate Homeland Security Committee

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee unanimously voted to advance the CISA Cyber Exercise Act, bipartisan legislation introduced by U.S. Senator Jacky Rosen (D-NV) with U.S. Senators Ben Sasse (R-NE) and Angus King (I-ME), to enhance the cybersecurity of critical infrastructure. The Committee also advanced Senator King’s Defense of United States Infrastructure Act, a bipartisan cybersecurity bill that Senator Rosen co-sponsored and helped pass during the markup. Additionally, the Committee passed Senator Dianne Feinstein’s (D-CA) Wildland Firefighter Fair Pay Act, a bipartisan bill to support federal firefighters, which Senator Rosen co-sponsored and to which she offered a successful amendment.

“I’m proud to see that several bipartisan bills I’ve introduced and supported have advanced out of the Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee today,” said Senator Rosen. “These vital pieces of legislation will help us address and mitigate two urgent threats that are on the rise right now across the country – crippling cyberattacks on our critical infrastructure and unprecedented wildfires, which are placing a significant burden on our brave firefighters and those who support our first responders. I look forward to seeing each of these bills move forward in the Senate.”

BACKGROUND: Senator Rosen’s bipartisan CISA Cyber Exercise Act would establish a National Cyber Exercise Program within the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA) to test the U.S. response plan for major cyber incidents and provide American businesses and state and local governments with model exercises to test the safety and security of their critical infrastructure against the threat of cyberattacks.

The Defense of United States Infrastructure Act — to which Senator Rosen filed a substitute amendment in the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee, reflecting compromise language agreed to by Senators King, Rosen, and the committee leadership — would strengthen the cyber resilience of America’s critical infrastructure systems.

The Rosen-backed Wildland Firefighter Fair Pay Act would waive annual premium pay caps for federal firefighters working overtime due to wildfire emergencies. Senator Rosen’s amendment to the bill, which was adopted unanimously, would expand the bill to cover National Weather Service incident meteorologists (IMETs), specialists dispatched to wildland fires alongside firefighting crews to provide accurate up-to-date information critical to combating fires in the West and across the country.