Congressional Budget Office Cost Estimate: H.R. 3773: RESTORE Act of 2007   [open pdf - 59KB]

"H.R. 3773 would modify a number of rules and procedures the government must follow when conducting electronic surveillance. In particular, the bill would amend several sections added to the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) by the Protect America Act of 2007. Under H.R. 3773, the government would have to apply to the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court (FISC) for authorization to conduct electronic surveillance on non-U.S. persons (individuals who are neither U.S. citizens nor permanent residents) outside the United States in instances when such surveillance could result in the government also obtaining the communications of individuals in the United States. Several sections of the bill would, if implemented, increase discretionary costs. However, CBO does not have access to the information necessary to estimate the impact on the budget of implementing H.R. 3773. Any changes in federal spending under the bill would be subject to the appropriation of the necessary funds. Enacting H.R. 3773 would not affect direct spending or revenues. The Unfunded Mandates Reform Act (UMRA) excludes from the application of that act any legislative provisions that are necessary for national security. CBO has determined that section 4 of H.R. 3773, which would authorize certain electronic surveillance without a court order in an emergency situation, falls under that exclusion and has not reviewed it for intergovernmental or private-sector mandates. Other provisions of H.R. 3773 contain intergovernmental mandates as defined in UMRA, but CBO estimates that any costs to state and local governments would fall well below the annual threshold established in that act […]."

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