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H.R. 3007 (ih) To establish the Commission on the Advancement of Women in Science, Engineering, and Technology Development. ...
H.R.3007 One Hundred Fifth Congress of the United States of America AT THE SECOND SESSION Begun and held at the City of Washington on Tuesday, the twenty-seventh day of January, one thousand nine hundred and ninety- eight An Act To establish the Commission on the Advancement of Women and Minorities in Science, Engineering, and Technology Development. Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled, SECTION 1. SHORT TITLE. This Act may be cited as the ``Commission on the Advancement of Women and Minorities in Science, Engineering, and Technology Development Act''. SEC. 2. FINDINGS. The Congress finds the following: (1) According to the National Science Foundation's 1996 report, Women, Minorities, and Persons with Disabilities in Science and Engineering-- (A) women have historically been underrepresented in scientific and engineering occupations, and although progress has been made over the last several decades, there is still room for improvement; (B) female and minority students take fewer high-level mathematics and science courses in high school; (C) female students earn fewer bachelors, masters, and doctoral degrees in science and engineering; (D) among recent bachelors of science and bachelors of engineering graduates, women are less likely to be in the labor force, to be employed full-time, and to be employed in their field than are men; (E) among doctoral scientists and engineers, women are far more likely to be employed at 2-year institutions, are far less likely to be employed in research universities, and are much more likely to teach part-time; (F) among university full-time faculty, women are less likely to chair departments or hold high-ranked positions; (G) a substantial salary gap exists between men and women with doctorates in science and engineering; (H) Blacks, Hispanics, and Native Americans continue to be seriously underrepresented in graduate science and engineering programs; and (I) Blacks, Hispanics, and Native Americans as a group are 23 percent of the population of the United States, but only 6 percent are scientists or engineers. (2) According to the National Research Council's 1995 report, Women Scientists and Engineers Employed in Industry: Why So Few?-- (A) limited access is the first hurdle faced by women seeking industrial jobs in science and engineering, and while progress has been made in recent years, common recruitment and hiring practices that make extensive use of traditional networks often overlook the available pool of women; (B) once on the job, many women find paternalism, sexual harassment, allegations of reverse discrimination, different standards for judging the work of men and women, lower salary relative to their male peers, inequitable job assignments, and other aspects of a male-oriented culture that are hostile to women; and (C) women to a greater extent than men find limited opportunities for advancement, particularly for moving into management positions, and the number of women who have achieved the top levels in corporations is much lower than would be expected, based on the pipeline model. (3) The establishment of a commission to examine issues raised by the findings of these two reports would help-- (A) to focus attention on the importance of eliminating artificial barriers to the recruitment, retention, and advancement of women and minorities in the fields of science, engineering, and technology, and in all employment sectors of the United States; (B) to promote work force diversity; (C) to sensitize employers to the need to recruit and retain women and minority scientists, engineers, and computer specialists; and (D) to encourage the replication of successful recruitment and retention programs by universities, corporations, and Federal agencies having difficulties in employing women or minorities in the fields of science, engineering, and technology. SEC. 3. ESTABLISHMENT. There is established a commission to be known as the ``Commission on the Advancement of Women and Minorities in Science, Engineering, and Technology Development'' (in this Act referred to as the ``Commission''). SEC. 4. DUTY OF THE COMMISSION. The Commission shall review available research, and, if determined necessary by the Commission, conduct additional research to-- (1) identify the number of women, minorities, and individuals with disabilities in the United States in specific types of occupations in science, engineering, and technology development; (2) examine the preparedness of women, minorities, and individuals with disabilities to-- (A) pursue careers in science, engineering, and technology development; and (B) advance to positions of greater responsibility within academia, industry, and government; (3) describe the practices and policies of employers and labor unions relating to the recruitment, retention, and advancement of women, minorities, and individuals with disabilities in the fields of science, engineering, and technology development; (4) identify the opportunities for, and artificial barriers to, the recruitment, retention, and advancement of women, minorities, and individuals with disabilities in the fields of science, engineering, and technology development in academia, industry, and government; (5) compile a synthesis of available research on lawful practices, policies, and programs that have successfully led to the recruitment, retention, and advancement of women, minorities, and individuals with disabilities in science, engineering, and technology development; (6) issue recommendations with respect to lawful policies that government (including Congress and appropriate Federal agencies), academia, and private industry can follow regarding the recruitment, retention, and advancement of women, minorities, and individuals with disabilities in science, engineering, and technology development; (7) identify the disincentives for women, minorities, and individuals with disabilities to continue graduate education in the fields of engineering, physics, and computer science; (8) identify university undergraduate programs that are successful in retaining women, minorities, and individuals with disabilities in the fields of science, engineering, and technology development; (9) identify the disincentives that lead to a disproportionate number of women, minorities, and individuals with disabilities leaving the fields of science, engineering, and technology development before completing their undergraduate education; (10) assess the extent to which the recommendations of the Task Force on Women, Minorities, and the Handicapped in Science and Technology established under section 8 of the National Science Foundation Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 1987 (Public Law 99- 383; 42 U.S.C. 1885a note) have been implemented; (11) compile a list of all federally funded reports on the subjects of encouraging women, minorities, and individuals with disabilities to enter the fields of science and engineering and retaining women, minorities, and individuals with disabilities in the science and engineering workforce that have been issued since the date that the Task Force described in paragraph (10) submitted its report to Congress; (12) assess the extent to which the recommendations contained in the reports described in paragraph (11) have been implemented; and (13) evaluate the benefits of family-friendly policies in order to assist recruiting, retaining, and advancing women in the fields of science, engineering, and technology such as the benefits or disadvantages of the Family and Medical Leave Act of 1993 (29 U.S.C. 2001 et seq.). SEC. 5. MEMBERSHIP. (a) Number and Appointment.--The Commission shall be composed of 11 members as follows: (1) One member appointed by the President from among for-profit entities that hire individuals in the fields of engineering, science, or technology development. (2) Two members appointed by the Speaker of the House of Representatives from among such entities. (3) One member appointed by the minority leader of the House of Representatives from among such entities. (4) Two members appointed by the majority leader of the Senate from among such entities. (5) One member appointed by the minority leader of the Senate from among such entities. (6) Two members appointed by the Chairman of the National Governors Association from among individuals in education or academia in the fields of life science, physical science, or engineering. (7) Two members appointed by the Vice Chairman of the National Governors Association from among such individuals. (b) Initial Appointments.--Initial appointments shall be made under subsection (a) not later than 90 days after the date of the enactment of this Act. (c) Terms.-- (1) In general.--Each member shall be appointed for the life of the Commission. (2) Vacancies.--A vacancy in the Commission shall be filled in the manner in which the original appointment was made. (d) Pay of Members.--Members shall not be paid by reason of their service on the Commission. (e) Travel Expenses.--Each member shall receive travel expenses, including per diem in lieu of subsistence, in accordance with sections 5702 and 5703 of title 5, United States Code. (f) Quorum.--A majority of the members of the Commission shall constitute a quorum for the transaction of business. (g) Chairperson.--The Chairperson of the Commission shall be elected by the members. (h) Meetings.--The Commission shall meet not fewer than 5 times in connection with and pending the completion of the report described in section 8. The Commission shall hold additional meetings for such purpose if the Chairperson or a majority of the members of the Commission requests the additional meetings in writing. (i) Employment Status.--Members of the Commission shall not be deemed to be employees of the Federal Government by reason of their work on the Commission except for the purposes of-- (1) the tort claims provisions of chapter 171 of title 28, United States Code; and (2) subchapter I of chapter 81 of title 5, United States Code, relating to compensation for work injuries. SEC. 6. DIRECTOR AND STAFF OF COMMISSION; EXPERTS AND CONSULTANTS. (a) Director.--The Commission shall appoint a Director who shall be paid at a rate not to exceed the maximum annual rate of basic pay payable under section 5376 of title 5, United States Code. (b) Staff.--The Commission may appoint and fix the pay of additional personnel as the Commission considers appropriate. (c) Applicability of Certain Civil Service Laws.--The Director and staff of the Commission may be appointed without regard to the provisions of title 5, United States Code, governing appointments in the competitive service, and may be paid without regard to the provisions of chapter 51 and subchapter III of chapter 53 of that title relating to classification and General Schedule pay rates, except that an individual so appointed may not receive pay in excess of the maximum annual rate of basic pay payable under section 5376 of title 5, United States Code. (d) Experts and Consultants.--The Commission may procure temporary and intermittent services under section 3109(b) of title 5, United States Code, at rates for individuals not to exceed the maximum annual rate of basic pay payable under section 5376 of title 5, United States Code. (e) Staff of Federal Agencies.--Upon request of the Commission, the Director of the National Science Foundation or the head of any other Federal department or agency may detail, on a reimbursable basis, any of the personnel of that department or agency to the Commission to assist it in carrying out its duties under this Act. SEC. 7. POWERS OF COMMISSION. (a) Hearings and Sessions.--The Commission may, for the purpose of carrying out this Act, hold hearings, sit and act at times and places, take testimony, and receive evidence as the Commission considers appropriate. The Commission may administer oaths or affirmations to witnesses appearing before it. (b) Powers of Members and Agents.--Any member or agent of the Commission may, if authorized by the Commission, take any action which the Commission is authorized to take by this section. (c) Obtaining Official Data.--The Commission may secure directly from any department or agency of the United States information necessary to enable it to carry out this Act. Upon request of the Chairperson of the Commission, the head of that department or agency shall furnish that information to the Commission. (d) Mails.--The Commission may use the United States mails in the same manner and under the same conditions as other departments and agencies of the United States. (e) Administrative Support Services.--Upon the request of the Commission, the Administrator of General Services shall provide to the Commission, on a reimbursable basis, the administrative support services necessary for the Commission to carry out its responsibilities under this Act. (f) Contract Authority.--To the extent provided in advance in appropriations Acts, the Commission may contract with and compensate Government and private agencies or persons for the purpose of conducting research or surveys necessary to enable the Commission to carry out its duties under this Act. SEC. 8. REPORT. Not later than 1 year after the date on which the initial appointments under section 5(a) are completed, the Commission shall submit to the President, the Congress, and the highest executive official of each State, a written report containing the findings, conclusions, and recommendations of the Commission resulting from the study conducted under section 4. SEC. 9. CONSTRUCTION; USE OF INFORMATION OBTAINED. (a) In General.--Nothing in this Act shall be construed to require any non-Federal entity (such as a business, college or university, foundation, or research organization) to provide information to the Commission concerning such entity's personnel policies, including salaries and benefits, promotion criteria, and affirmative action plans. (b) Use of Information Obtained.--No information obtained from any entity by the Commission may be used in connection with any employment related litigation.
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