WASHINGTON, D.C. – The U.S. Senate today unanimously approved the Conference Report to the Intelligence Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2005. The conference report authorizes funding for programs and activities of the U.S. Intelligence Community. The legislation authorizes funds for the Central Intelligence Agency, the National Reconnaissance Office, the National Security Agency, the National Geospatial Intelligence Agency, the Defense Intelligence Agency, and other Intelligence Community entities.
In addition to authorizing intelligence funding, the conference report contains a number of key provisions that have been reconciled with the Intelligence Reform and Terrorism Prevention Act of 2004 (S. 2845). First, the bill grants the Central Intelligence Agency authorities for personnel under non-traditional cover that will provide enhanced security for intelligence operations and relieve associated administrative burdens. Second, the bill establishes a Chief Information Officer (CIO) for the Intelligence Community. The CIO will fill an essential role as community-wide manager for development of an Intelligence Community enterprise architecture and for the acquisition and research and development of information technology resources. The bill also establishes and enhances programs designed to ensure that the Intelligence Community can recruit and retain officers and employees with the diversity of skills necessary to address issues critical to national security, including individuals with language skills that are in great demand in our intelligence services.
Senator Pat Roberts (R-Kan.), the Chairman of the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence, stated in connection with today's Conference action: "I am pleased with the bi-partisan support for the Conference Report to accompany the Intelligence Authorization Act for 2005. Our nation has had an Intelligence Authorization Bill every year since 1979. This fact underscores the importance that the Congress places on providing regular and explicit authorities to our Intelligence Community. The passage of the authorization bill is a fundamental oversight duty of the Senate and House Intelligence Committees. I am pleased that we were finally able to get it done."