DC Digest - August 26, 2011In Today's Issue:
- White House Releases Agency Regulatory Reform Plans
- Israeli Ambassador Hosts Ramadan Iftar with Duke's Imam Antepli
- Obama Administration Tightens Rules on Financial Conflicts of Interest in Science
- Washington Post Editorial: Mr Perry's DREAM Act
WHITE HOUSE RELEASES AGENCY REGULATORY REFORM PLANS
In response to a government-wide initiative to review and reform existing federal regulations, the White House on August 23 released the preliminary regulatory reform plans of more than two dozen federal agencies, including the Departments of Energy and Health and Human Services, and NASA.
The announcement was made by Cass Sunstein, administrator of the White House Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs (OIRA), who said in an August 23 opinion piece in the Wall Street Journal that the goal of the initiative is to “reduce costs, simplify the system, and eliminate redundancy and inconsistency.”
Regulation Reform (WhiteHouse.gov)
Washington is Eliminating Red Tape (WSJ.com)
ISRAELI AMBASSADOR HOSTS RAMADAN IFTAR WITH DUKE'S IMAM ANTEPLI
In an effort to foster better relations between Israel and the Muslim-American community, the Israeli ambassador to the United States, Michael Oren, hosted dozens of Muslim-American leaders Thursday night at his Washington, D.C., home for an iftar, the traditional meal to break the fast during Ramadan.
While other diplomatic officials and politicians, including each president since Bill Clinton, have hosted iftars, the event is a first for an Israeli ambassador and comes as a time of continuing tense relations between Israel and the Muslim-majority Palestinian territories.
The evening's 65 guests include prominent Muslims and Jews, such as Akbar Ahmed, chair of Islamic Studies at American University; Rabbi Marc Schneier, president of the Foundation for Ethnic Understanding and the founding rabbi of the Hampton Synagogue in Westhampton Beach, N.Y., and the New York Synagogue in Manhattan; and Abdullah Antepli, the Muslim chaplain at Duke University.
Michael Oren, Israeli Ambassador, Hosts Ramadan Iftar with Muslim Americans (Huffington Post)
OBAMA ADMINISTRATION TIGHTENS RULES ON FINANCIAL CONFLICTS OF INTEREST IN SCIENCE
The Obama administration announced on Tuesday the final form of new rules governing financial conflicts of interest in federally sponsored medical research, saying it hoped to boost public confidence after years of scandals tied to corporate influence.
The rule changes, the first in 16 years, bring new standards for universities to evaluate financial ties between their researchers and companies, for the researchers to disclose them, and for the public and government agencies to understand them.
The higher education community is still analyzing the final rule, but AAU issued a statement on Tuesday acknowledging that “it is clear that the process has been thoughtful and that the agency has taken considerable time and effort to respond to the views and concerns of the biomedical research community.”
AAU's statement further expresses appreciation for NIH providing institutional flexibility in public disclosure of financial conflicts of interest, and says the association will work with the agency and its member institutions “to develop and refine practices that enhance public trust in the research enterprise by providing appropriate and accurate information in a useful context.”
Obama Administration Tightens Rules on Financial Conflicts of Interest in Science (Chronicle of Higher Ed)
HHS Tightens Financial Conflict of Interest Rules for Researcher (NIH.gov)
WASHINGTON POST EDITORIAL: MR. PERRY'S DREAM ACT
As governor in 2001, Mr. Perry signed legislation to grant in-state tuition discounts to youngsters educated in Texas high schools without regard to their immigration status. "To punish these young Texans for their parents' actions is not what America has always been about," Mr. Perry told the New Hampshire Sunday News shortly before announcing his candidacy this month. However, his courage apparently fails him in the debate over a federal Dream Act, which, according to the Sunday News, Mr. Perry opposes.
Mr. Perry's DREAM Act (Washington Post)