Press Releases

Hickenlooper Heralds Committee Passage of His Legislation to Modernize Space Operations, Protect Kids Online

Jul 27, 2023

Three Hickenlooper-led bills, including his ORBITS Act, passed out of the Commerce Committee and now head for a full Senate vote

WASHINGTON – Today, U.S. Senator John Hickenlooper, a member of the Senate Commerce, Science and Transportation Committee, celebrated committee passage of three bipartisan Hickenlooper-led bills: the Orbital Sustainability (ORBITS) Act, the Launch Communications Act, and the Kids Online Safety Act

“We’re on the cusp of a new frontier in American space operations, but space junk and outdated processes threaten to stop us. These bills will help fix those issues so we can maintain our leadership,” said Hickenlooper. 

Hickenlooper’s bipartisan ORBITS Act will establish a first-of-its-kind research, development, and demonstration project to reduce the nearly 1 million pieces of space junk in orbit. Hickenlooper reintroduced the legislation earlier this year after it passed the Senate unanimously at the end of the 117th Congress.

Hickenlooper’s bipartisan Launch Communications Act will modernize the current Federal Communications Commission’s (FCC) process for licensing spectrum for commercial space launches to help ensure that the United States remains the global leader in space. 

As Chair of the Senate Commerce Committee’s Subcommittee on Consumer Protection, Product Safety and Data Security, which oversees consumer privacy and emerging technology issues such as Artificial Intelligence (AI), Hickenlooper is a cosponsor of the bipartisan Kids Online Safety Act, which will enhance parental controls and strengthen protections for children from harmful content online and hold social media companies accountable.

“We took a great step forward today to protect our kids and teens online,”said Hickenlooper at the hearing. “[The Kids Online Safety Act] marks an important step in our fight to prevent dangerous algorithms from pushing harmful content to our youth online, limiting the most addictive features of social media platforms that are causing our minors physical and emotional harm, and empowering parents nationwide with tools they need to keep their children safe.”

All three bills now head to the Senate floor for a full vote.

For full video of the hearing, click HERE.

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