Pallone & Schakowsky Praise House Passage of Three Consumer Protection Bills
Energy and Commerce Chairman Frank Pallone, Jr. (D-NJ) and Consumer Protection and Commerce Subcommittee Chair Jan Schakowsky (D-IL) released the following joint statement today after the House of Representatives passed three consumer protection and commerce bills:
“Protecting consumers from fraud, scams and abuse has long been one of this Committee’s top priorities, and with the surge in COVID-19 related scams this year, that mission is more important now than ever,” said Pallone and Schakowsky. “Legislation passed today establishes critical new tools in the fight against fraud – especially fraud aimed at seniors and other targeted groups – and will also ensure the American public is regularly updated on the effects of COVID-19 on home safety and the travel industry. Together, these three bipartisan bills will significantly improve our ability to protect Americans from some of the troubling impacts of this pandemic. We thank our colleagues who worked with us to get this important legislation passed today.”
The House of Representatives passed the following bills:
H.R. 2610, the “Fraud and Scam Reduction Act,” was introduced by Reps. Lisa Blunt Rochester (D-DE) and Tim Walberg (R-MI) and includes the text from four bills: H.R. 2301, the “Seniors Fraud Prevention Act of 2019;” H.R. 7699, the “Protecting Seniors from Emergency Scams Act;” H.R. 8127, the “Protecting Indian Tribes from Scams Act;” and H.R. 8152, the “FTC Collaboration Act.” The bill establishes a senior scams prevention advisory group to coordinate efforts to improve educational materials on senior scams, a new office at the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) dedicated to preventing fraud targeting seniors, and a new searchable database on senior scams. The bill also requires the FTC to issue reports on seniors scams, scams targeting Indian Tribes and members of Indian Tribes, and collaboration between the FTC and state Attorneys General regarding scam enforcement. The bill passed on the House Floor by voice vote.
H.R. 6435, the “Combating Pandemic Scams Act of 2020,” was introduced by Reps. Earl “Buddy” Carter (R-GA), Annie Kuster (D-NH), Richard Hudson (R-NC) and Blunt Rochester. It requires the FTC to inform the public about scams related to COVID-19, disseminate information on reporting COVID-19 scams, and establish a national database for such information. The bill passed on the House Floor by voice vote.
H.R. 8121, the “Pandemic Effects on Home Safety and Tourism Act,” was introduced by Rep. Tony Cárdenas (D-CA) and includes text from H.R. 8122, the “Protecting Tourism in the United States Act.” The bill requires the Consumer Product Safety Commission to study and report to Congress on the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic on injuries and deaths associated with consumer products. It also directs the Department of Commerce to conduct a study and report to Congress on the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic on travel and tourism in the U.S. The bill passed on the House Floor by voice vote.