H.R. 1892, Honoring Hometown Heroes Act
On Tuesday, May 16, 2017, the House will consider H.R. 1892, Honoring Hometown Heroes Act, under suspension of the rules. H.R. 1892 was introduced on April 4, 2017, by Rep. John Larson (D-CT) and was referred to the Committee on Judiciary, which ordered the bill reported by voice vote on May 3, 2017.
H.R. 1892 authorizes the governors of a state or, territory, or possession of the United States and the Mayor of the District of Columbia to proclaim that the U.S. flag shall be flown at half-staff in the event of the death of a first responder (public safety officer) working in such jurisdiction who dies while serving in the line of duty.
The rules for handling and displaying the U.S. Flag are defined by a law known as the U.S. Flag Code. The Flag code allows the President to order the U.S. flag to be flown at half-staff upon the death of principal figures of the United States Government and the Governor of a State, territory, or possession, as a mark of respect to their memory. H.R. 1892 would authorize governors to proclaim the flag should be flown at half-staff to honor local police, firefighters, and emergency responders.
According to the bill sponsor, “First responders are the Nation's front line of defense here at home. Whether they are responding to a terrorist attack, natural disaster, or traffic accident, our police, firefighters and emergency medical personnel (EMS) are always the first to answer the call and selflessly put their lives in the harm’s way to protect our communities and our nation. In the unfortunate times when the ultimate sacrifice is given, they deserve the respect of having our Nation's flag flown at half-staff. Amending the Flag Code is the least we can do.”
The Congressional Budget Office (CBO) estimates that implementing H.R. 1892 would have no effect on the federal budget. Enacting the legislation would not affect direct spending or revenues; therefore, pay-as-you-go procedures do not apply.
For questions or further information please contact John Huston with the House Republican Policy Committee by email or at 6-5539.
 See Rep. John Larson Press Release, “Larson Statement on the Passage of the Honoring Hometown Heroes Act in Committee,” May 3, 2017.