(Senate - May 23, 2018)

Text available as:

Formatting necessary for an accurate reading of this text may be shown by tags (e.g., <DELETED> or <BOLD>) or may be missing from this TXT display. For complete and accurate display of this text, see the PDF.

[Pages S2879-S2880]
From the Congressional Record Online through the Government Publishing Office []


      By Mr. WYDEN:
  S. 2933. A bill to amend title 17, United States Code, to clarify 
ownership with respect to certain copyrights,

[[Page S2880]]

and for other purposes; to the Committee on the Judiciary.
  Mr. WYDEN. Mr. President, we in Congress are tasked in the 
Constitution with promoting science and the useful arts through giving 
authors and inventors the exclusive right to their writings and 
discoveries for a limited time. The first copyright act provided that 
the ``limited time'' would be a term of protection of 14 years, 
renewable once. Since that time, the copyright term has exploded to 95, 
or 120 years, or 70 years after the death of the artist, depending on 
the circumstance. I have serious concerns that these lengthy terms tip 
the balance toward limiting rather than promoting creativity and 
innovation. Unfortunately, a bill--the CLASSICS Act--currently under 
consideration in the Judiciary Committee blows past current U.S. 
copyright term to provide a windfall to a select few.
  The CLASSICS Act (Compensating Legacy Artists for their Songs, 
Service, and Important Contributions to Society Act) would give up to 
144 of exclusive copyright protection for digital transmissions of pre-
1972 sound recordings. Not only that, but it would create a hodge-podge 
of State and Federal rights, basically cherry-picking the most valuable 
right under the Federal regime and leaving the rest to be governed by 
States. This means that if a library wants to make a copy of a 
recording, and then digitally transmit that copy, it would have to 
navigate two different regimes--creating more uncertainty, not less.
  That is why, today, I am introducing the ACCESS to Recordings Act. It 
would give artists the full suite of Federal rights, as well as the 
uniformity and certainty that goes with the Federal copyright system. 
Along with that comes the exceptions and limitations, including those 
that enable archivists to preserve recordings, many of which are 
starting to degrade in their original physical medium and urgently need 
to be digitally preserved. In addition, it provides the same term 
available to post-72 recordings--95 years from publication. Let's be 
clear that is a significant term of protection. A song recorded in 1960 
will enjoy protection until 2055--37 years from now.
  I hope that someday, in the not too distant future, my colleagues and 
I can sit down and talk about real copyright reform, but in the 
meantime, we shouldn't be expanding term and making it more difficult 
for users of the copyright system--including both artists and the 
public--to navigate their rights and obligations. What I suggest 
instead is a straight-forward application of the Federal rules that 
apply to post-1972 recordings to those created before that time. We 
must remember that copyright is for the public interest, not just for 
the enrichment of large corporations. That is why I am introducing the 
ACCESS to Recordings Act.
      By Mr. DAINES (for himself, Mr. Crapo, Mr. Thune, Mr. Rounds, and 
        Mr. Risch):
  S. 2943. A bill to amend the Internal Revenue Code of 1986 to exempt 
Indian tribal governments and other tribal entities from the employer 
health coverage mandate during the time the employer health coverage 
mandate exists; to the Committee on Finance.
  Mr. DAINES. Mr. President, I ask unanimous consent that the text of 
the bill be printed in the Record.
  There being no objection, the text of the bill was ordered to be 
printed in the Record, as follows:

                                S. 2943

       Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of 
     the United States of America in Congress assembled,


       This Act may be cited as the ``Tribal Employment and Jobs 
     Protection Act''.


       (a) In General.--Paragraph (2) of section 4980H(c) of the 
     Internal Revenue Code of 1986 is amended by adding at the end 
     the following new subparagraph:
       ``(G) Certain indian employers.--The term `applicable large 
     employer' does not include--
       ``(i) any Indian tribal government (as defined in section 
     7701(a)(40)), a subdivision of an Indian tribal government 
     (determined in accordance with section 7871(d)), or an agency 
     or instrumentality of an Indian tribal government or 
     subdivision thereof,
       ``(ii) any tribal organization (as defined in section 4(l) 
     of the Indian Self-Determination and Education Assistance 
       ``(iii) any corporation if more than 50 percent (determined 
     by vote and value) of the outstanding stock of such 
     corporation is owned, directly or indirectly, by any entity 
     described in clause (i) or (ii), or
       ``(iv) any partnership if more than 50 percent of the value 
     of the capital and profits interests of such partnership are 
     owned, directly or indirectly, by any entity described in 
     clause (i) or (ii).''.
       (b) Effective Date.--The amendment made by this section 
     shall apply to calendar years beginning after December 31,