OVERNIGHT TECH: Cybersecurity bill headed straight to Senate floor

The bill would give the Homeland Security Department regulatory authority over companies with computer systems crucial to the nation's economic and physical security. It would require that the companies take adequate precautions to safeguard their systems and would increase information-sharing about cyber threats between the private sector and the government. 

The Democratic aides said they expect lawmakers to vote on an amendment on the floor that would require companies to notify consumers if their data is breached.

Spectrum included in tentative deal: According to a GOP aide, a tentative deal to extend the payroll tax cut includes auctions of airwaves licenses, known as spectrum.

The auction proceeds would help to pay for extending unemployment benefits.

The spectrum legislation would authorize the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) to auction airwaves that currently belong to television broadcasters, splitting some of the revenue with the stations that choose to participate. The spectrum is potentially worth billions of dollars to wireless carriers, which are struggling to meet the growing data demands of smartphones and tablet computers.

Sen. Jay RockefellerJohn (Jay) Davison RockefellerBottom Line World Health Day: It's time to fight preventable disease Lobbying World MORE (D-W.Va.) said lawmakers "made great progress and are very close to a historic milestone" of including a nationwide broadband network for first-responders.

The FCC acted Wednesday to protect consumers from unwanted, automatic "robocalls" from telemarketers.


Democratic Reps. Henry Waxman (Calif.) and G.K. ButterfieldGeorge (G.K.) Kenneth ButterfieldNancy Pelosi fends off impeachment wave — for now House Democrats press leaders to start Trump impeachment WHIP LIST: Number of Democrats backing Trump impeachment inquiry rises MORE (N.C.) wrote to Apple CEO Tim Cook on Wednesday, asking him for details after reports that the Path social networking app was downloading users' address books without their consent.

Sen. Chuck GrassleyCharles (Chuck) Ernest GrassleyGrassley raises concerns about objectivity of report critical of GOP tax law's effects Overnight Health Care: Key Trump drug pricing proposal takes step forward | Missouri Planned Parenthood clinic loses bid for license | 2020 Democrats to take part in Saturday forum on abortion rights Key Trump proposal to lower drug prices takes step forward MORE (R-Iowa) still plans to block President Obama's two FCC nominees despite the agency nixing LightSquared's high-speed wireless network on Tuesday night.

Sens. Dick DurbinRichard (Dick) Joseph DurbinNegotiators face major obstacles to meeting July border deadline Senate set to bypass Iran fight amid growing tensions Schumer calls for delay on passage of defense bill amid Iran tensions MORE (D-Ill.) and Tom CoburnThomas (Tom) Allen CoburnThe Hill's Morning Report — Presented by PhRMA — Worries grow about political violence as midterms approach President Trump’s war on federal waste American patients face too many hurdles in regard to health-care access MORE (R-Okla.) demanded answers from Twitter CEO Dick Costolo on Wednesday about his company's new policy to allow governments to censor some tweets.

A White House spokeswoman said the administration is pleased with the "comprehensive approach" of the Senate's cybersecurity bill, which was introduced Tuesday.