Committees

Department of Health and Human Services
Green House

Green House

Transportation and Infrastructure (GH)

Jurisdiction: Coast Guard, including lifesaving service, lighthouses, lightships, ocean derelicts, and the Coast Guard Academy; Federal management of emergencies and natural disasters; Flood control and improvement of rivers and harbors; Inland waterways; Inspection of merchant marine vessels, lights and signals, lifesaving equipment, and fire protection on such vessels; Navigation and laws relating thereto, including pilotage; Registering and licensing of vessels and small boats; Rules and international arrangements to prevent collisions at sea; The Capitol Building, the Senate and House Office Buildings; Constructions or maintenance of roads and post roads (other than appropriations therefore); Construction or reconstruction, maintenance, and care of buildings and grounds of the Botanic Garden, the Library of Congress, and the Smithsonian Institution; Merchant marine (except for national security aspects thereof); Purchase of sites and construction of post offices, custom houses, Federal courthouses, and Government buildings within the District of Columbia; Oil and other pollution of navigable waters, including inland, coastal, and ocean waters; Marine affairs, including coastal zone management, as they relate to oil and other pollution of navigable waters; Public buildings and occupied or improved grounds of the United States generally; Public works for the benefit of the benefit of navigation, including bridges and dams (other than international bridges and dams); Related transportation regulatory agencies (except the Transportation Security Administration); Roads and the safety thereof; Transportation, including civil aviation, railroads, water transportation, transportation safety (except automobile safety and transportation security functions of the Department of Homeland Security), transportation infrastructure, transportation labor, and railroad retirement and unemployment (except revenue measures related thereto); and Water power

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Green House

Foreign Affairs (GH)

Jurisdiction includes foreign assistance (including development assistance, Millennium Challenge Corporation, the Millennium Challenge Account, HIV/AIDS in foreign countries, security assistance, and Public Law 480 programs abroad), the Peace Corps, national security developments affecting foreign policy, strategic planning and agreements, war powers, treaties, executive agreements, and the deployment and use of United States Armed Forces, peacekeeping, peace enforcement, and enforcement of United Nations or other international sanctions, arms control and disarmament issues, the United States Agency for International Development; activities and policies of the State, Commerce and Defense Departments and other agencies related to the Arms Export Control Act, and the Foreign Assistance Act including export and licensing policy for munitions items and technology and dual-use equipment and technology, international law, promotion of democracy, international law enforcement issues, including narcotics control programs and activities, Broadcasting Board of Governors, embassy security, international broadcasting, public diplomacy, including international communication, information policy, international education, and cultural programs, and all other matters not specifically assigned to a subcommittee.

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Green House

Education and the Workforce (GH)

Elementary and secondary education initiatives, including the No Child Left Behind Act, school choice for low-income families, special education (the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act), teacher quality & teacher training, scientifically-based reading instruction, and vocational and technical education; Higher education programs (the Higher Education Act), to support college access for low and middle-income students and help families pay for college; Early childhood & preschool education programs including Head Start; School lunch and child nutrition programs; Financial oversight of the U.S. Department of Education; Programs and services for the care and treatment of at-risk youth, child abuse prevention, and child adoption; Educational research and improvement; Adult education; Anti-poverty programs, including the Community Services Block Grant Act and the Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP); Pension and retirement security for U.S. workers; Access to quality health care for working families and other employee benefits; Job training, adult education, and workforce development initiatives, including those under the Workforce Investment Act (WIA), to help local communities train and retrain workers; Continuing the successful welfare reforms of 1996; Protecting the democratic rights of individual union members; Worker health and safety, including occupational safety and health; Providing greater choices and flexibility (including "comp time" or family time options) to working women and men; Equal employment opportunity and civil rights in employment; Wages and hours of labor, including the Fair Labor Standards Act; Workers' compensation, and family and medical leave; All matters dealing with relationships between employers and employees.

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Green House

Ethics (GH)

The Committee on Ethics has jurisdiction over all bills, resolutions and other matters relating to the Code of Official Conduct adopted under House Rule XXIII. With respect to Members, officers, and employees of the U.S. House of Representatives, the Committee on Ethics is authorized to undertake the following actions: A) Recommend administrative actions to establish or enforce standards of official conduct. B) Investigate alleged violations of the Code of Official Conduct or of any applicable rules, laws, or regulations governing the performance of official duties or the discharge of official responsibilities. Such investigations must be made in accordance with Committee rules . C) Report to appropriate federal or state authorities substantial evidence of a violation of any law applicable to the performance of official duties that may have been disclosed in a Committee investigation. Such reports must be approved by the House or by an affirmative vote of two-thirds of the Committee. D) Render advisory opinions regarding the propriety of any current or proposed conduct of a Member, officer, or employee, and issue general guidance on such matters as necessary. E) Consider requests for written waivers of the gift rule

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Green House

Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs (GH)

The Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs (HSGAC) is the primary Senate oversight committee with broad jurisdiction over government operations generally and the Department of Homeland Security in particular. Its primary responsibilities are to study the efficiency, economy, and effectiveness of all agencies and departments of the federal government; evaluate the effects of laws enacted to reorganize the legislative and executive branches of government; and study the intergovernmental relationships between the U.S. and states and municipalities, and between the U.S. and international organizations of which the U.S. is a member. The year after passage of the Homeland Security Act of 2002, the Committee's name changed from the Governmental Affairs Committee to the Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee as its jurisdiction expanded to include homeland security issues. In addition to governmental affairs, the Committee now oversees and receives legislation, messages, petitions, and memorials on all matters relating to the Department of Homeland Security, except for appropriations, the Coast Guard, the Transportation Security Administration, immigration, customs revenue, commercial operations, and trade. Among the responsibilities are the Archives of the United States, budgeting and accounting measures generally, government contracting, the Census and collection of statistics, Congressional organization, the federal Civil Service, government information, intergovernmental relations, the municipal affairs of the District of Columbia, the organization and management of U.S. nuclear export policy, the organization and reorganization of the executive branch, the Postal Service, and the status of officers and employees of the U.S., including their classification, compensation, and benefits. The Committee also receives and examines reports of the Comptroller General of the United States and submits recommendations to the Senate as it sees fit related to the subject matter of the reports.

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Green House

Oversight and Government Reform (GH)

Blue House

Blue House

Energy and Commerce (BH)

The Committee on Energy and Commerce, the oldest standing legislative committee in the U.S. House of Representatives, is vested with the broadest jurisdiction of any congressional authorizing committee. Today it has responsibility for the nation's telecommunications, consumer protection, food and drug safety, public health research, environmental quality, energy policy, and interstate and foreign commerce. It oversees multiple cabinet-level Departments and independent agencies, including the Departments of Energy, Health and Human Services, Commerce, and Transportation, as well as the Environmental Protection Agency, the Federal Trade Commission, the Food and Drug Administration, and the Federal Communications Commission.

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Blue House

Foreign Affairs (BH)

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Blue House

Intelligence (BH)

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Blue House

Judiciary (BH)

House Jurisdiction: The judiciary and judicial proceedings, civil and criminal; Administrative practice and procedure; Apportionment of Representatives; Bankruptcy, mutiny, espionage, and counterfeiting; Civil liberties; Constitutional amendments; Criminal law enforcement; Federal courts and judges, and local courts in the Territories and possessions; Immigration policy and non-border enforcement; Interstate compacts generally; Claims against the United States; Members of Congress, attendance of members, Delegates, and the Resident Commissioner; and their acceptance of incompatible offices; National penitentiaries; Patents, the Patent and Trademark Office, copyrights, and trademarks; Presidential succession; Protection of trade and commerce against unlawful restraints and monopolies; Revision and codification of the Statutes of the United States; State and territorial boundary lines; Subversive activities affecting the internal security of the United States.

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Blue House

Science, Space, and Technology (BH)

White House

White House

Oversight and Government Reform (WH)

Jurisdiction: Federal civil service, including intergovernmental personnel; and the status of officers and employees of the United States, including their compensation, classification, and retirement; Municipal affairs of the District of Columbia in general (other than appropriations); Federal paperwork reduction; Government management and accounting measures generally; Holidays and celebrations; Overall economy, efficiency, and management of government operations and activities, including federal procurement; National archives; Population and demography generally, including the Census; Postal service generally, including transportation of the mails; Public information and records; Relationship of the federal government to the states and municipalities generally; Reorganizations in the executive branch of the government.

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White House

Education and the Workforce (WH)

White House

Financial Services (WH)

Jurisdiction: Banks and banking, including deposit insurance and Federal monetary policy; Economic stabilization, defense production, renegotiation, and control of the price of commodities, rents, and services; Financial aid to commerce and industry (other than transportation); Insurance generally; International finance; International financial and monetary organizations; Money and credit, including currency and the issuance of notes and redemption thereof; gold and silver, including the coinage thereof; valuation and revaluation of the dollar; Public and private housing; Securities and exchanges; Urban development.

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White House

Intelligence (WH)

HPSCI is charged with oversight of the United States Intelligence Community, which includes the intelligence and intelligence-related activities of the following seventeen elements of the U.S. Government and the Military Intelligence Program.

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White House

Ways and Means (WH)

The Committee has jurisdiction over all taxation, tariffs, and other revenue-raising measures, as well as a number of other programs including: Social Security; Unemployment insurance; Medicare; Enforcement of child support laws; Temporary Assistance for Needy Families; Foster care and adoption programs.

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Blue Senate

Blue Senate

Agriculture (BS)

The Committee on Agriculture, Nutrition and Forestry is a committee of the United States Senate empowered with legislative oversight of all matters relating to the nation's agriculture industry, farming programs, forestry and logging, and legislation relating to nutrition and health. Topics of particular interest to Penn Model Congress delegates include subjects relating to the animal industry and disease, food stamp programs, forest reserve preservation, inspection of livestock, meat, and agricultural products, pests and pesticides, and school nutrition programs.

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Blue Senate

Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs (BS)

Although the Senate has a longstanding history of writing and passing legislation focusing on our nation’s banks, the Senate Banking Committee was not formally established until the 1913 passage of the landmark Federal Reserve Act. Since then, the Committee has undergone various transformations and reorganizations. Now known as the Committee on Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs to underscore the diversity of issues under its purview, the Committee plays an integral role in managing legislation that affects the lives of many Americans. These areas of jurisdiction include, but are not limited to: banking, insurance, financial markets, securities, housing, urban development and mass transit, international trade and finance, and economic policy

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Blue Senate

Environment and Public Works (BS)

Jurisdiction: Air pollution; Construction and maintenance of highways; Environmental aspects of Outer Continental Shelf lands; Environmental effects of toxic substances, other than pesticides; Environmental policy; Environmental research and development; Fisheries and wildlife; Flood control and improvements of rivers and harbors, including environmental aspects of deepwater ports; Noise pollution; Nonmilitary environmental regulation and control of nuclear energy; Ocean dumping; Public buildings and improved grounds of the United States generally, including Federal buildings in the District of Columbia; Public works, bridges, and dams; Regional economic development; Solid waste disposal and recycling; Water pollution; Water resources.

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Blue Senate

Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions (BS)

The HELP Committee jurisdiction encompasses most of the agencies, institutes, and programs of the Department of Health and Human Services, including the Food and Drug Administration, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the National Institutes of Health, the Administration on Aging, the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, and the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality. The evolving global economy and the need for a highly skilled workforce create new challenges for American workers. The HELP Committee is ensuring our country's workforce is prepared to meet the challenges of the 21st Century through a lifetime of learning for our citizens. The HELP Committee jurisdiction encompasses most federal labor and employment laws, including those that regulate wages and hours of employment, enforce mining and workplace health and safety, combat employment-based discrimination, and regulate union / management relations. The HELP Committee has primary jurisdiction over private retirement plans and the Pension Benefit Guaranty Corporation through the Employee Retirement Income Security Act of 1974 and over railroad retirement.

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Blue Senate

Judiciary (BS)

Green Senate

Green Senate

Armed Services (GS)

The Committee on Armed Services is a committee of the United States Senate empowered with legislative oversight of the nation’s military, including the Department of Defense, military research and development, nuclear energy, benefits for members of the military, the Selective Service System and other matters related to defense policy. Considered one of the most influential Senate committees, the committee tends to take a more bipartisan approach than other committees, as many of its members formerly served in the military or have major defense interests located in the states they come from. Topics of particular interest to Penn Model Congress delegates include subjects relating to aeronautical and space activities associated with the development of weapons systems or military operations, maintenance and operation of the Panama Canal, including administration, sanitation, and government of the Canal Zone, naval petroleum reserves, pay, promotion, retirement, and other benefits and privileges of members of the Armed Forces, including overseas education of civilian and military dependents.

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Green Senate

Commerce, Science, and Transportation (GS)

Coast Guard; Coastal zone management; Communications; Highway safety; Inland waterways (except construction); Interstate commerce; Marine and ocean navigation, safety, and transportation; navigational aspects of deepwater ports; Marine fisheries; Merchant marine and navigation; Nonmilitary aeronautical and space sciences; Oceans, weather, and atmospheric activities; Panama Canal and interoceanic canals generally; Regulation of consumer products and services, including testing related to toxic substances, other than pesticides, and except for credit, financial services, and housing; Regulation of interstate common carriers, including railroads, buses, trucks, vessels, pipelines, and civil aviation; Science, engineering, and technology research and development and policy; Sports; Standards and measurement; Transportation; Transportation and commerce aspects of Outer Continental Shelf lands.

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Green Senate

Foreign Affairs (GS)

Green Senate

Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions (GS)

Green Senate

Small Business and Entrepreneurship (GS)

Jurisdiction: Access to Capital; Broadband; Contracting; Disaster Assistance Programs; Healthcare; Innovation & Research; Minority Entrepreneurs; Veteran-owned Enterprises; Women Entrepreneurs; Taxes; Trade

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Red House

Red House

Education and the Workforce (RH)

Red House

Ethics (RH)

Red House

Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs (RH)

Red House

Natural Resources (RH)

Jurisdiction: Fisheries and wildlife, including research, restoration, refuges, and conservation; Forest reserves and national parks created from the public domain; Forfeiture of land grants and alien ownership, including alien ownership of mineral lands; Geological Survey; International fishing agreements; Interstate compacts relating to apportionment of waters for irrigation purposes; Irrigation and reclamation, including water supply for reclamation projects and easements of public lands for irrigation projects; and acquisition of private lands when necessary to complete irrigation projects; Native Americans generally, including the care and allotment of Native American lands and general and special measures relating to claims that are paid out of Native American funds; Insular possessions of the United States generally (except those affecting the revenue and appropriations); Military parks and battlefields, national cemeteries administered by the Secretary of the Interior, parks within the District of Columbia, and the erection of monuments to the memory of individuals; Mineral land laws and claims and entries thereunder; Mineral resources of public lands; Mining interests generally; Mining schools and experimental stations; Marine affairs, including coastal zone management (except for measures relating to oil and other pollution of navigable waters); Oceanography; Petroleum conservation on public lands and conservation of the radium supply in the United States; Preservation of prehistoric ruins and objects of interest on the public domain; Public lands generally, including entry, easements, and grazing thereon; Relations of the United States with Native Americans and Native American tribes; Trans-Alaska Oil Pipeline (except ratemaking).

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Red House

Science, Space, and Technology (RH)

The Committee on Science, Space, and Technology has jurisdiction over all energy research, development, and demonstration, and projects therefor, and all federally owned or operated non-military energy laboratories; astronautical research and development, including resources, personnel, equipment, and facilities; civil aviation research and development; environmental research and development; marine research; commercial application of energy technology; National Institute of Standards and Technology, standardization of weights and measures and the metric system; National Aeronautics and Space Administration; National Science Foundation; National Weather Service; outer space, including exploration and control thereof; science scholarships; scientific research, development, and demonstration, and projects therefor. The Committee on Science, Space, and Technology shall review and study on a continuing basis laws, programs, and Government activities relating to non-military research and development.

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Red Senate

Red Senate

Appropriations (RS)

The Senate Appropriations committee consists of twelve subcommittees tasked with drafting legislation to allocate funds to government agencies. These subcommittees are responsible for reviewing the President's budget request, hearing testimony from government officials on matters relating to the budget, and drafting the spending plans for the coming fiscal year. Their work is passed on to the full Senate Appropriations Committee, which may review and modify the bills and approve them for consideration by the full Senate. The Committee is also responsible for supplemental spending bills, which are sometimes needed in the middle of a fiscal year to compensate for emergency expenses.

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Red Senate

Armed Services (RS)

Red Senate

Environment and Public Works (RS)

Red Senate

Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions (RS)

Red Senate

Judiciary (RS)

Senate Jurisdiction: Apportionment of Representatives; Bankruptcy, mutiny, espionage, and counterfeiting; Civil liberties; Constitutional amendments; Federal courts and judges; Government information; Holidays and celebrations; Immigration and naturalization; Interstate compacts generally; Judicial proceedings, civil and criminal, generally; Local courts in territories and possessions; Measures relating to claims against the United States; National penitentiaries; Patent Office; Patents, copyrights, and trademarks; Protection of trade and commerce against unlawful restraints and monopolies; Revision and codification of the statutes of the United States; State and territorial boundary lines.

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White Senate

White Senate

Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs (WS)

White Senate

Energy and Natural Resources (WS)

Jurisdiction of the Full Committee includes oversight and legislative responsibilities for: National Energy Policy, including international energy affairs and emergency preparedness; nuclear waste policy; privatization of federal assets; territorial policy (including changes in status and issues affecting Antarctica); Native Hawaiian matters; and Ad Hoc issues. Jurisdiction of the Subcommittee on Energy includes oversight and legislative responsibilities for: nuclear, coal and synthetic fuels research and development; nuclear and non-nuclear energy commercialization projects; nuclear fuel cycle policy; DOE National Laboratories; global climate change; new technologies research and development; nuclear facilities siting and insurance program; commercialization of new technologies including, solar energy systems; Federal energy conservation programs; energy information; liquefied natural gas projects; oil and natural gas regulation; refinery policy; coal conversion; utility policy; strategic petroleum reserves; regulation of Trans-Alaska Pipeline System and other oil and gas pipeline transportation systems within Alaska Arctic research and energy development; and oil, gas and coal production and distribution.Jurisdiction of the Subcommittee on National Parks includes oversight and legislative responsibilities for: National Park System; Wild and Scenic Rivers System; National Trails System; national recreation areas; national monuments; historic sites; military parks and battlefields; Land and Water Conservation Fund; historic preservation; outdoor recreation resources; and preservation of prehistoric ruins and objects of interest on the public domain. Jurisdiction of the Subcommittee on Public Lands, Forests, and Mining includes oversight and legislative responsibilities for: public lands administered by the Bureau of Land Management and U.S. Forest Service including farming and grazing thereon, and wilderness areas; establishment of wildlife refuges on public lands and wilderness designation therein; military land withdrawals; reserved water rights; Alaska Native Claims Settlement Act; territorial affairs; national mining and minerals policy and general mining laws; surface mining, reclamation and enforcement; mining education and research; Federal mineral leasing; Outer Continental Shelf leasing; Naval oil shale reserves; National Petroleum reserve -- Alaska; and deep seabed mining. Jurisdiction of the Subcommittee on Water and Power includes oversight and legislative responsibilities for: irrigation; reclamation projects, including related flood control purposes; power marketing administrations (e.g., Bonneville Power, Southwestern Power, Western Area Power, Southeastern Power); energy development impacts on water resources; groundwater resources and management; hydroelectric power; low head hydro; and energy related aspects of deepwater ports.

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White Senate

Foreign Affairs (WS)

White Senate

Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs (WS)

White Senate

Veterans Affairs (WS)

Jurisdiction: Veterans' measures generally; Pensions of all the wars of the U.S., general and special; Life insurance issued by the government on account of service in the Armed Forces; Compensation, vocational rehabilitation, and education of veterans; Veterans' hospitals, medical care, and treatment of veterans; Soldiers' and Sailors' Civil Relief; Readjustment of servicemen to civilian life; National Cemeteries.

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Special Programs

Special Programs

Executive Branch

Special Programs

National Security Council

Special Programs

Supreme Court

Special Programs

Department of Health and Human Services

Planning Your Trip

What to Bring

You should bring whatever you think you'll need to be a productive Senator or Congressman! When you arrive on Thursday, you'll receive a bill book, name tag, placard, and pen. Many delegates choose to also bring a folder to keep their papers organized, as well as extra pens and pencils or a highlighter.

If you did not submit your bill online by the deadline, be sure to bring 20 copies of your bill with you to committee session.

What to Wear

The dress code for all conference sessions is business formal attire. For men this means a jacket and tie, and for women this means a suit, or a blouse with a skirt or pants. Dress code will be strictly enforced so please be sure to pack appropriately.

You will also have some free time at night and on Saturday afternoon, so you should bring some casual clothes as well. For the delegate dance on Saturday night, attire is casual to dressy, or essentially what you would wear to a party.