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Key provisions: U.S. intelligence reform bill


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The Senate voted 89-2 Wednesday to approve a sweeping overhaul of U.S. intelligence.
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The intelligence bill paves the way for sweeping changes.

CNN's Ed Henry on the intelligence bill agreement.
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George W. Bush
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House of Representatives

WASHINGTON (CNN) -- Here are some of the key provisions of the intelligence reform bill that finally made it through Congress Tuesday:

  • Creates the new position of director of national intelligence, separate from the CIA director, to direct and manage the activities of agencies across the intelligence community and serve as the principal adviser to the president for intelligence concerns. The director will also have authority over much of the intelligence budget.
  • Changes the structure of the National Counterterrorism Center, which was established last August by executive order from President Bush. Previously, the center was part of the CIA, with its director appointed by the CIA director. Now, the president will appoint the center's director, with confirmation by the Senate .The center is designed to analyze and interpret intelligence information related to terrorism and to conduct strategic planning for counterterrorism activities.
  • Requires intelligence, law enforcement and homeland security agencies to share information, mandating links between federal, state and local agencies and the private sector, as well as creating common standards for issuing security clearances and classifying information.
  • Requires the Department of Homeland Security to test a new advanced screening system for airline passengers; upgrade baggage screening procedures and security in baggage areas; upgrade air cargo security; improve training for federal air marshals; upgrade explosive detection systems; and develop other advanced detection equipment at airports.
  • Requires DHS to explore new technologies to deal with possible transportation threats, such as an air defense system to protect planes from ground-launched missiles; blast-resistant cargo and baggage containers; and biometric identification for airport access.
  • Establishes mandatory penalties for possession or trafficking in missile systems designed to destroy aircraft.
  • Strengthens visa application requirements and establishes a visa and passport security program within the State Department.
  • Requires DHS to develop a system to use biometric data to track people entering and exiting the United States.
  • Adds 10,000 full-time border patrol agents and 4,000 new investigators for Immigration and Customs Enforcement over the next five years, as well as increasing by 40,000 the number of detention beds available to house aliens awaiting deportation.
  • Requires federal agencies to establish minimum standards for issuing driver's licenses and birth certificates, and requires DHS to establish standards for ID used to board airplanes. However, states will not be prevented from issuing driver's licenses to illegal immigrants.
  • Beefs up efforts to go after terrorist financing, including more funding to combat money laundering and financial crimes and more authority to track cross-border financial transactions.
  • Creates an independent Privacy and Civil Liberties Board, made up of private citizens appointed by the president, to examine executive branch policies to make sure they don't violate privacy and civil liberties.
  • Allows grand jury information, which is normally secret, to be shared with government officials in order to prevent or respond to terrorist threats.
  • Creates a National Counteproliferation Center to address threats from international weapons proliferation.
  • Creates an Intelligence Directorate within the FBI to restructure the agency's intelligence capability. Intelligence personnel will also be placed in FBI field offices.
  • Requires the FBI to update its information technology systems and report its progress to Congress.
  • Requires DHS to devise a plan to patrol the U.S-Mexican border with remotely piloted aircraft and to test advanced technology -- including sensors, video and unmanned aircraft -- to secure the U.S.-Canadian border.
  • Makes smuggling aliens into the United States a federal crime and establishes and Human Smuggling and Trafficking Center.
  • Criminalizes possessing or trafficking in weapons of mass destruction.
  • People who perpetrate terrorist hoaxes can be prosecuted and forced to make reimbursement for response costs.
  • Non-citizens who receive military-type training from designated terrorist organizations can be deported.
  • Creates watch lists for passengers on ships.
  • Upgrades security features of pilot licenses.
  • Requires the General Accountability Office to study potential weaknesses in the U.S. asylum system.

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