Issue: Economy and Jobs

WALORSKI SUPPORTS ALTERNATIVE PLAN TO LOWER ENERGY COSTS, PROMOTE JOB CREATION

Congresswoman co-sponsors the Electricity Security and Affordability Act to set achievable energy standards for coal-fired power plants

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Congresswoman Jackie Walorski announced her support for the Electricity Security and Affordability Act (H.R. 3826), a bipartisan bill she co-sponsored to require the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to set achievable standards for coal-fired power plants and support energy independence.

“In the heart of winter, Hoosiers remain concerned with costly utility bills,” said Congresswoman Walorski. “The proposed EPA regulations are bound to increase energy costs and stifle economic growth, making it harder to run our households and businesses. This bill provides a commonsense alternative that would allow us to be good stewards of the environment, support job creation, and ensure power plants can safely achieve their full potential.”

The Energy Security and Affordability Act was introduced in response to sweeping EPA regulations that could effectively prohibit the creation of new coal-fired power plants by setting impractical carbon capture and storage standards for greenhouse gas emissions H.R. 3826 offers a reasonable alternative to the EPA’s overreaching regulations, requiring that any greenhouse gas standards set by the EPA for new coal-fired plants can also be achieved by existing commercial power plants. The bill prohibits the EPA from enacting any rules for existing power plants unless Congress passes an enactment date into law.

In the Hoosier state, coal currently provides more than 80 percent of electricity for utilities, businesses, and manufacturing. Purdue University released a report in December stating that Indiana energy prices are expected to rise 32 percent by 2023 due in part to proposed EPA regulations. This increase could have a devastating impact on economic growth and job creation, particularly for highly energy-intensive industries like manufacturing. According to the Bureau of Labor and Statistics, Elkhart County was recently ranked first in the nation in job growth due in part to the addition of over 5,000 new manufacturing jobs.

Walorski has co-sponsored numerous bills to lower energy prices and increase job creation in pursuit of safe, affordable energy independence—including the GAS Act and approval of the Keystone XL Pipeline. Congresswoman Walorski also plans to send a bipartisan letter to the EPA requesting a comment period extension for the EPA’s proposed rule on new power plants to allow all stakeholders adequate time to share their views and concerns.

The Electricity Security and Affordability Act continues to be marked up today in the Energy and Power Subcommittee. Congressman Ed Whitfield (R-KY) and Senator Joe Manchin (D-WV) formally introduced this bipartisan, bicameral legislation last Thursday.

WALORSKI STATEMENT ON BIPARTISAN BUDGET ACT OF 2013

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Congresswoman Jackie Walorski, a member of the House Budget Committee, released the following statement regarding passage of the Bipartisan Budget Act of 2013:

“Hoosiers sit around their kitchen tables and make tough choices to keep a budget, and they expect Washington to do the same. Today, the House took a step in the right direction by passing a budget plan with bipartisan support. This deal is not perfect, but it serves as a building block for deficit reduction and long term reforms—without raising taxes.

“Approval of this plan will provide much-needed certainty for the business community and improve economic outlook. Without a doubt, there is still much work to be done to balance the budget, reduce government spending, and address tax reform. Moving forward, I will continue reaching across the aisle to get our fiscal house in order to ensure a brighter future for the next generation.

“In a divided government, working together is a necessity, not an option. I urge my colleagues in the Senate to pass this deal to prove that Congress can work together for the sake of the American people.”

WALORSKI SUPPORTS HOUSE BILL TO CUT RED TAPE, BOOST JOB CREATION

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Congresswoman Jackie Walorski today voted in support of bipartisan legislation to reign in costly government regulations that are hurting small businesses and preventing job creation. The Small Business Capital Access and Job Preservation Act, H.R. 1105, is set to exempt advisers to certain private equity funds from the new registration requirements imposed by the Dodd-Frank Act.

“It is clear that Washington red tape is hindering job growth at home in Indiana and across the country,” said Walorski. “Hoosiers want Congress to work on sensible reforms that will get people back to work and start improving economic growth. I am pleased to support this commonsense bill to allow private equity firms to avoid unnecessary federal regulations that rack up costs and prevent investments in job creation and company growth.”

Indiana is ranked in the top 20 for private equity investment by state, with 35 investments at a value of $8.5 billion. Under current law, investment advisers to private investment funds must register with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). This requires advisers to file reports and maintain records with the SEC, costing critical resources and funds that could be better directed toward productive growth. Passage of this legislation would mitigate this distraction for private equity firms and refocus efforts on job creation and economic growth.

Walorski: House advances commonsense energy bills to create more jobs

WASHINGTON, D.C.- This week, the House of Representatives passed three bill to address energy needs, lower energy costs, and create more jobs for American families. Congresswoman Jackie Walorski voted for each measure as part of her continued efforts to create more jobs, move toward energy independence, and eliminate overreaching federal regulations.

“This week, the House advanced commonsense energy bills to create more jobs. Times are still tough for many families, but there are certain steps we can take to create jobs and reduce energy costs using our own available resources. As we approach the holidays and prepare for winter weather, Hoosiers deserve to know that Congress is proactively passing bills that will help lower their heating bills and get people back to work,” said Walorski.

Summary of House Passed Bills:

The Federal Lands Jobs and Energy Security Act (H.R. 1965): Reduces government red tape, streamlines regulations, and promotes onshore development of oil, natural gas, and renewable energy.

The Protecting States’ Rights to Promote American Energy Security Act (H.R. 2728): Limits the Administration’s ability to impose duplicative federal regulations on hydraulic fracturing in any state that already has hydraulic fracturing regulations. This bipartisan legislation allows states to regulate this type of energy production while still permitting the federal government to issue baseline standards for hydraulic fracturing in states where no regulations exist.

The Natural Gas Pipeline Permitting Reform Act (H.R. 1900): Provides Americans families with access to affordable energy by expediting infrastructure expansion and modernizing the gas pipeline approval process while ensuring environmental safeguards remain in place.

WALORSKI TOURS BULLARD’S FARM MARKET DURING NATIONAL SMALL BUSINESS WEEK

ELKHART, IN – In recognition of the 50th Annual National Small Business Week, Congresswoman Jackie Walorski (IN-02) today visited Bullard’s Farm Market to tour the facility and hear small business concerns from local Hoosiers.

“As we celebrate National Small Business Week, it is privilege to highlight successful Hoosier businesses, like Bullard’s, that contribute to the local economy and create jobs,” said Walorski. “Hoosiers are proud of our generations of small business success, and I will continue working hard at the federal level to support pro-growth policies and keep taxes low for our families.”

Started by the late Herman Bullard, the farm market is now owned by his son, Kevin, and wife, Cindy Rardin. Beginning as just 8 rows of corn, the farm market has expanded to include acres of land, fresh produce, a bakery, greenhouse, and antiques. It was awarded the 2013 “Business of the Year” by the Greater Elkhart Chamber of Commerce.

“We appreciate Congresswoman Walorski stopping by this morning to take a firsthand look at our growing farm market. Her dedication to Hoosier small business remains important as we continue to expand our facility, support the community, and provide quality customer service for our shoppers,” said owner Kevin Bullard.

Recently, Walorski completed a district-wide Chamber of Commerce tour, holding roundtable discussions with groups in all 10 counties to hear important updates on local issues affecting economic growth in Northern Indiana. According to a recent report from the Indiana Department of Workforce Development, Indiana ranks fifth in the nation in private sector job growth rate since July 2009.

WALORSKI HIGHLIGHTS RV INDUSTRY IN ELKHART COUNTY TOUR

ELKHART COUNTY, IN – Congresswoman Jackie Walorski (IN-02) will stop at five RV manufacturing companies today in Elkhart County to tour facilities and hear important updates about issues affecting the industry. Accompanied by Mark Bowersox, executive director of the Recreation Vehicle Indiana Council, and Matt Rose, IMHA-RVIC Director of Recreation Vehicles, Walorski learned about new products, rebranding, and industry developments contributing to economic growth in the “RV Capital of the World.”

“Elkhart County leads the nation in RV production, and I applaud our hardworking Hoosiers for constantly making new products and spearheading innovative technologies to improve the industry and create more Hoosier jobs,” said Congresswoman Walorski. “I will remain focused on protecting this niche market, especially by reducing red tape in Washington and rolling back costly regulations that prevent the industry from reaching its full potential.”

According to the RV Industry Association, 83 percent of North American recreational vehicles are built in Elkhart and LaGrange Counties. Over the past 15 years, the U.S. Bureau of Labor and Statistics has reported roughly half of Elkhart County’s workforce is employed by manufacturing jobs, with a significant amount covered by RV manufacturers and suppliers. While the industry took a devastating hit during the recession, Indiana continues to restore and expand a wide spectrum of recreation vehicle products and components—working closely with international companies in Canada.

“RV manufacturing continues to employ a host of Elkhart County Hoosiers, and as we strive to strengthen the local economy it is critical we keep lawmakers informed of our needs and issues. We appreciate Rep. Walorski taking a close look at each of these companies and look forward to continuing our working relationship while she serves the Second District,” said Mark Bowersox, executive director of the Recreation Vehicle Indiana Council.

Throughout the day, Congresswoman Walorski will stop at NeXus RV, KOA Middlebury, Jayco, L&W Engineering, and Kropf Industries, all located in Elkhart County.

WALORSKI STATEMENT ON PASSAGE OF THE WORKING FAMILIES FLEXIBILITY ACT

Walorski co-sponsors bill to provide options for hard working families

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Congresswoman Jackie Walorski (IN-02) released the following statement on the passage of The Working Families Flexibility Act of 2013, H.R. 1406. The bill offers private-sector employees the voluntary opportunity to work with employers to obtain paid time off, instead of cash wages for overtime hours worked.

“At home in Indiana, I hear from moms and dads in the grocery stores and around town who are struggling to balance hectic work schedules. From parent teacher conferences and extra-curricular activities to caring for aging parents and relatives, our families need better time management options to achieve a healthy balance in their daily routines. I am proud to co-sponsor this commonsense legislation to provide private-sector employees the chance to work with employers on voluntary opportunities for better time management. Hoosier families will have the freedom and flexibility to plan more efficient schedules to accommodate their needs, offering more choices that reflect the demands of our workforce.

“With the economy still struggling, Congress must do our part to offer Americans sensible solutions that will strengthen families and accommodate an increasing number of single parents and working families. This bill provides voluntary options for the private sector, the same choices that have been available to public-sector employees since 1985.”

CONGRESSWOMAN WALORSKI COMPLETES “BUILDING BETTER BUSINESS” TOUR

Congresswoman joins roundtable discussions with local Chambers of Commerce

MISHAWAKA, IN – Congresswoman Jackie Walorski (IN-02) completed a district-wide “Building Better Business” tour this evening, with her final stop at the Plymouth Chamber of Commerce. Joining roundtable discussions with an array of local business owners and volunteers across the district, Walorski learned important updates on relevant issues affecting economic growth in Northern Indiana.

“Hard-working Hoosiers have trail-blazed new innovation and technologies to bolster economic growth and provide good-paying jobs,” said Walorski. “Onerous regulations coming from Washington are perpetuating uncertainty and hindering job creation in our communities, and Congress must do their part to restore the workforce by cutting red tape and keeping taxes low for American businesses.”

Walorski met with Chamber members from South Bend to Wabash, representing a cross section of local industries such as agriculture, finance, and manufacturing. Many Hoosiers voiced concern over federal legislation, like Obamacare, that enforces an employer mandate and new health insurances taxes—weighing down small businesses. Other topics included the need for tax reform, improved infrastructure, and overreaching EPA regulations.

“The Greater Elkhart Chamber of Commerce is always happy to welcome Rep. Walorski to share important Congressional updates. We represent nearly 1,100 organizations that employ more than 44,000 people and we believe discussions with Rep. Walorski will help us create an even more viable business climate,” said Kyle Hannon, President and CEO of the Greater Elkhart Chamber of Commerce.

Congresswoman Walorski met with all ten counties of Indiana’s Second District over the course of two days. Later this week, she will also attend the Goshen Chamber of Commerce Luncheon in Elkhart County.

WALORSKI INTRODUCES BALANCED BUDGET AMENDMENT

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Congresswoman Jackie Walorski (IN-02), a member of the House Budget Committee, introduced a balanced budget Constitutional amendment (H.J. Res. 38) as her first sponsored legislation in the 113th Congress. The resolution restricts outlays to revenue, allowing Congress to spend no more than it takes in each year.

“On Tax Day, Hoosier families have just completed the painstaking process of filing returns to determine how much of their hard-earned money is owed to the government,” said Walorski. “With a $16.8 trillion national debt, it is time to enact serious reforms that force Washington to live within its means by passing a balanced budget to create jobs.”

The balanced budget amendment forces Congress to spend only what it takes in, requires a 3/5 majority vote to increase the debt limit, requires a majority vote to raise taxes, and states the President must annually submit a balanced budget to Congress.

“While serving in the Indiana State Legislature, we passed a balanced budget that turned our state deficit into a surplus and created thousands of good-paying jobs. The President’s budget includes $1 trillion in new taxes and $964 billion in government spending—never balancing. Instead, American families deserve a responsible plan that will curtail wasteful government spending and foster job growth.”

There are currently 49 states, including Indiana, that have some requirements to balance a budget. The resolution has been referred to the House Committee on the Judiciary.

WALORSKI DELIVERS WEEKLY REPUBLICAN ADDRESS ON BALANCING THE BUDGET

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Congresswoman Jackie Walorski (IN-02) delivered the Weekly Republican Address calling for President Obama to work on a balanced budget that creates jobs and improves the lives of American families. As a member of the House Budget Committee, Walorski supports the House plan to balance the budget in 10 years without raising taxes. In light of Tax Day on Monday, Walorski discussed the fiscal challenges currently burdening hardworking Americans, ways to improve economic growth, and ideas to spur job creation.

Video of the address is available to view and download. A full transcript follows.

Full Transcript:

“Fellow Americans, it’s an honor to speak with you. I’m Jackie Walorski, and I’m a new member of Congress from Indiana’s Second District.

“Monday is April 15th, so hardworking families are sitting around their kitchen tables putting the finishing touches on their taxes. It’s always a stressful and time-consuming exercise, figuring out how much we have to hand over to help cover our government’s bills.

“Unfortunately, many of the leaders you send to Washington want to make this time of year even harder on you and your family.

“Take the budget President Obama submitted to Congress this week. He says it’s ‘responsible’– ‘a compromise,’ even – but here’s the facts.

“If we were to implement the president’s budget, taxes would go up on just about every American, including middle-class families. Altogether, the president wants to impose more than $1 trillion in new taxes. That’s in addition to $1 trillion in new taxes from ObamaCare and the more than $600 billion in tax hikes the president secured in January. This isn’t what compromise looks like.

“When I grocery shop each weekend, I talk to moms and dads who are concerned about the rising cost of groceries and the prices at the pump. The last thing American families can afford is more tax hikes from Washington.

“What’s more, the president’s budget not only ignores our nation’s spending problem – it makes things worse. If his plan were to take effect, the government would spend $964 billion more of your hard-earned money than it is already planning to spend. Every household’s share of the national debt would increase by more than $60,000. That isn’t compromise, either.

“Even when the president’s budget offers signs of common ground – like modest entitlement reforms – he says he won’t follow through unless he can impose more tax increases.

“Worst of all, the White House says the president’s budget never balances – ever, failing to meet the most basic principle of budgeting for every family and small business.

“The president’s budget isn’t a compromise; it’s a blank check for more spending and more debt. If that were the answer, millions of Americans wouldn’t be leaving the workforce and asking ‘where are the jobs?’

“Republicans are offering a better way. Our budget will balance in ten years. We will end the waste of taxpayer dollars and foster a healthier economy, delivering real solutions to help improve people’s lives. Here’s what some of those solutions look like.

“First, our balanced budget seizes opportunities to support our nation of builders and get Americans back to work, through popular energy projects like the Keystone XL pipeline.

“Second, our balanced budget repeals ObamaCare so we can address the problems it is causing – like making it harder to hire and driving up health care costs – and work towards patient-centered reforms.

“Finally, our balanced budget lays the groundwork for a fairer, simpler tax code. Closing loopholes and lowering tax rates for everyone would mean more jobs and higher wages. And Tax Day wouldn’t have to be such a headache anymore.

“These are good ideas and we’re ready to act on them. When I served in the Indiana General Assembly, we turned a deficit into a surplus, restored the state’s triple-A bond rating, and led the country in job creation. In the 1990s, President Clinton and Congressional Republicans worked together to balance the federal budget.

“So instead of the same old take-it-or-leave-it approach, President Obama should work with Republicans to find common ground so we can balance our budget, grow our economy, and improve the lives of American families.

“Thank you for listening, and enjoy the rest of your weekend.”

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