Bipartisan bill requiring agency CAIOs gets House companion

The House bill follows Senate legislation that advanced out of the Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee last year.
The dome of the U.S. Capitol is pictured on a sunny day with trees in the foreground.
The U.S. Capitol viewed from the Rayburn House Office Building June 13, 2024. (Photo by Madison Alder)

A requirement to have chief artificial intelligence officers in federal agencies would be enshrined into federal statute under a bipartisan bill now in the House and Senate.

Reps. Gerry Connolly, D-Va., and Andrew Garbarino, R-N.Y., announced a House companion to the AI Leadership to Enable Accountable Deployment (AI LEAD) Friday. A Senate version of that bill already made it out of the Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee in July 2023.

The House introduction comes after President Joe Biden required agencies to designate a CAIO to manage the uses and risks of the technology within their organizations in his October executive order on AI. A Connolly aide told FedScoop the legislation would codify the position outlined in that order and a corresponding Office of Management and Budget memo.

“Our legislation, which I am proud to introduce with Rep. Garbarino, will inject structure and accountability into the government’s management of AI and will ensure that every agency has the leadership in place to oversee the deployment of AI technology in safe and efficient ways,” said Connolly, ranking member of the House Subcommittee on Cybersecurity, Information Technology, and Government Innovation.


Under the existing order and OMB memo, CAIOs serve as the senior adviser on the technology to the leader of each agency. They oversee the agency’s compliance with risk management requirements and are tasked with “removing barriers to the responsible use of AI in the agency.” Those officials vice-chair their agency’s AI Governance Board and also serve on a governmentwide CAIO council.

In addition to requiring the position, the bill would similarly mandate that agencies create an AI board of senior officials to coordinate AI activities within the agency, codify the CAIO council, and require that agencies develop an AI strategy.

Garbarino, chair of the House Subcommittee on Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Protection, said that “by establishing Chief AI Officer positions within our agencies and ensuring interagency cooperation on AI, this legislation would go a long way to mitigating the risks and maximizing the opportunities present by AI development and deployment.”

Madison Alder

Written by Madison Alder

Madison Alder is a reporter for FedScoop in Washington, D.C., covering government technology. Her reporting has included tracking government uses of artificial intelligence and monitoring changes in federal contracting. She’s broadly interested in issues involving health, law, and data. Before joining FedScoop, Madison was a reporter at Bloomberg Law where she covered several beats, including the federal judiciary, health policy, and employee benefits. A west-coaster at heart, Madison is originally from Seattle and is a graduate of the Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication at Arizona State University.

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