House of Representatives Republican Conference Positioning

The Weekly Dispatch

 

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This month, Chair Cathy McMorris Rodgers took the message of how tax reform will help everyday Americans to North Carolina, Michigan, Pennsylvania, and Virginia. Watch a video about the Faces of Tax Reform Tour with Members who represent those districts.

 

House Passes the Save Local Businesses Act, Rolling Back the Obama Administration's Joint Employer Rule

 

This week, the House passed H.R. 3441, the Save Local Business Act. The legislation, sponsored by Rep. Bradley Byrne (R-AL), amends the National Labor Relations Act and the Fair Labor Standards Act to clarify that two or more employers must have “actual, direct, and immediate” control over employees to be considered joint employers. 

A coalition of 29 free-market groups supported this legislation.

The Save Local Businesses Act:

  • Rolls back a convoluted joint employer scheme that threatens job creation and undermines the American Dream.
  • Restores a commonsense definition of employer to provide certainty and stability for workers and employers. 
  • Protects workers and local employers from future overreach by unelected bureaucrats and activist judges.

 

 

 

McMorris Rodgers’ Hydropower Policy Modernization Act Passes House

 

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VIEW ONLINE |  On November 8, House Republican Conference Chair Cathy McMorris Rodgers’s (R-WA) Hydropower Policy Modernization Act (H.R. 3043) passed the United States House of Representatives. This legislation would streamline hydropower relicensing processes in America to encourage the continued use and expansion of low-cost, renewable hydroelectric energy in Washington state and beyond.

“Hydropower is crucial to our way of life in the Pacific Northwest. It’s clean, it’s renewable, it’s reliable, and it’s one of the reasons why we in Eastern Washington enjoy some of the most affordable electricity rates in America,” said McMorris Rodgers. “This bill won’t change outcomes or environmental standards. Instead, it will speed up the relicensing process and save time and money. Providing relief from these costly and time-consuming regulatory processes will encourage investment in hydropower so we can continue to support this clean energy in our region.”

BACKGROUND: On average in the U.S. it takes only 18 months to license a new natural gas facility but can take up to eight years or longer to license a new hydropower project or relicense an existing facility.  The existing hydropower fleet provides good-paying jobs across the country, produces enough low-cost electricity to power 85 million homes, and avoids nearly 190 million metric tons of CO2 emissions each year.The U.S. Department of Energy’s 2016 Hydropower Vision Report identified nearly 50 GW of new hydropower and pumped storage growth potential by 2050 GW, which would avoid 5.6 billion metric tons of CO2 emissions, save an estimated $209 million in avoided damages, and create more than 195,000 jobs. Despite these substantial benefits, U.S. hydropower resources are at risk due to an outdated and lengthy licensing process for both proposed new projects and existing projects requiring reauthorization.

THE SOLUTION: The Hydropower Policy Modernization Act (H.R. 3043) addresses these problems without compromising environmental protections. The bill improves the process by promoting accountability and transparency, requiring greater cooperation among federal and state agencies, and reducing needless duplication of efforts. This bill would streamline the hydropower relicensing process by allowing FERC to extend preliminary 4-year permits for hydropower projects and require FERC to establish a process for setting a schedule for a licensing review. Finally, the bill would also modify the federal definition of renewable energy to correctly include hydroelectric energy. Without these hydropower licensing process improvements we risk losing investment opportunities in new hydropower infrastructure which would provide consumers with affordable electricity and expand the use of clean, renewable energy.

 

 

 

 

OUTSIDE VOICES ON THE TAX CUTS AND JOBS ACT

40 Conservative Groups Rally Behind GOP Tax Bill

Forty free-market groups sent letters to all U.S. representatives Thursday, telling them that the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act's "provisions are a victory for the middle class, providing new tax relief, enabling more families to save and invest for the future, and creating an economy more conducive to prosperity for middle-class workers." The letter was led by the American Action Network, an outside group aligned with Republican leadership, and signed by Freedomworks, Heritage Action, the National Taxpayers Union, and more. (Read More)

 

Grover Norquist: Don't believe the lies - Tax Cuts and Jobs Act cuts taxes for all income levels
“The House GOP tax plan, known as the “Tax Cuts and Jobs Act,” cuts taxes at all income levels – rich, poor, and middle class.

How do they do it? First, the House plan proposes sweeping reform to the way individuals are taxed. The bill consolidates the existing tax brackets from eight to five (the new rates are 0, 12, 25, 35, and 39.6 percent). It doubles the standard deduction and expands the child tax credit while repealing distortionary deductions and credits in favor of broad tax reduction. It also repeals the Alternative Minimum Tax and the Death Tax” (Read More)

 

Ryan Ellis: Tax Reform Means Tax Cuts for All Americans Regardless of Income
"The tax reform bill will create nearly 1 million jobs and raise after tax income for a middle class family by $2600.

In New York, over 63,000 jobs are created and after tax income for a middle class family rises by over $2700.

In New Jersey, nearly 28,000 jobs are created and after tax income for a middle class family rises by over $3000.

In California, over 111,000 jobs are created and after tax income for a middle class family rises by nearly $3000.” (
Read More)

 

Statement from The Libre Initiative: Tax Reform Package Will Help Latino Families
“This new reform bill is not perfect, but it holds promise to make our tax code simpler, more predictable, more efficient, and more equitable, without adding new burdens on hardworking Latino taxpayers. It nearly doubles the standard deduction. It eliminates loopholes and special interest deductions that favor the wealthy and powerful. And it lowers business taxes that hurt American businesses and workers in competition with foreign competitors, who often benefit from lower tax rates at home. These are changes that will help Hispanic families, workers, and entrepreneurs.” (
Read More)

 

 

 

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Ahead of Veterans Day, House Unanimously Passes a Bill to Help Service Members in a Very Important Way

 

Read Article at Townhall.com |  With Veterans Day right around the corner, the House on Tuesday passed a mental health bill aimed at helping veterans who deployed and served in combat zones and received “an other than honorable discharge.” 

The Veteran Urgent Access to Mental HealthCare Act passed unanimously and will provide initial mental health assessments and mental healthcare to this group of veterans who under current law are ineligible for such federal benefits unless the Department of Veterans Affairs deems otherwise.

“Today, this House sent a critical message to our men and women in uniform. That message is that you are not alone. We are here to help those suffering from the ‘invisible’ wounds of war,” said Rep. Mike Coffman, who sponsored the legislation. “The passage of H.R. 918 is an important bipartisan effort to ensure that our combat veterans receive the mental healthcare services they need. I look forward to working with my colleagues in the Senate to get this bill across the finish line.”  

Coffman, a Marine Corps combat veteran and a member of the House Veterans' Affairs Committee, decided to take action following a 2017 Government Accountability Office 
study, which found a sizable number of service members who were discharged between FY2011 – FY 2015 over minor forms of misconduct had been diagnosed with traumatic brain injury, post-traumatic stress disorder or other conditions that could have affected their behavior.  

 

 

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If you do nothing else today, CLICK HERE to watch this video that Whip Scalise put together of his scooter race with Rep. Sam Johnson. Please click. You won’t be disappointed.

 

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