July 20, 2007
This week the House unanimously passed a bill that will help ease the lengthy delays citizens are experiencing obtaining passports. S. 966, The Passport Backlog Reduction Act, will lift certain restrictions on the ability of the State Department to hire retired staffers who are trained and authorized to process passport applications. The House-passed bill also includes provisions designed to provide adequate personnel to investigate fraud in connection with a passport application.
Some of you may have called my office recently with passport problems of your own. After hearing from many constituents about this issue, I introduced legislation to address the problem, H.R. 2960, the Department of State Crisis Response Act of 2007. This legislation was a House companion to S. 966. The House Foreign Affairs Committee decided to send S. 966, which recently passed the Senate, to the floor in an effort to expedite the process. I am very pleased that with the passage of S. 966, the State Department can begin working to reduce the passport backlog.
If you do have travel and/or passport questions, you will find many answers at www.travel.state.gov. My staff is also always available to assist with additional passport questions or to help constituents locate existing passport applications.
Contact: Alison M. Mills (617) 621-6208