Young: Americans Need to Choose Which Vision They Support

If you’re an Indiana Chamber member, one of the benefits that you should not overlook are the Policy Issue Conference Calls. John Gregg and Mike Pence are coming (more on that below), and here are just a few of the comments from Indiana 9th District Congressman Todd Young during today’s discussion.

  • On the "tense" atmosphere in Washington and the prospects for budget reform: "No one anticipates great breakthroughs or grand bargains in the next several months. You want to assure you have maximum leverage when you sit down at the bargaining table and this election is about leverage."
  • While he is frustrated, like others, by politics taking precedence over policy, Young admits that the parties have "different, irreconcilable visions and we need the American people to weigh in."
  • In discussing the prospects for broad tax reform, he says this Congress simply doesn’t have the "presidential leadership." He notes the 1986 tax reforms involved a Democrat-led House and Republican Senate, with the leadership of President Reagan allowing those groups to "come together and reconcile their differences."
  • About his co-sponsorship of the REINS Act, which would require up-or-down votes by Congress on any federal regulation with a projected $100 million or higher economic impact. "This would allow you to hold us accountable, and I want to be held accountable. In the end, you can then blame us if these rules and regulations are made the law of the land."
  • On his role on the Armed Services Committee, noting that administrations of both parties have not done a good job at developing a strong military strategy: "In the end, strategy ought to drive military spending. I wanted to be part of that larger conversation."

Young adds that a House vote is expected next week on the repeal of the medical device tax that could be so devastating to the Indiana economy. While House passage is possible, the Senate is not expected to act on the legislation. Also, look for the opportunity for Chamber members to weigh in on tax reform priorities with Rep. Young.

This writer (and many others) thinks we’re looking at a rising star in Congress. Thank you, Rep. Young, for your time today and we look forward to working with you at even greater levels in the future.

As far as future policy calls, mark September 21 and September 28 for one-hour discussions with Indiana gubernatorial candidates John Gregg and Mike Pence. Listen to the conversations and feel free to weigh in with your questions and comments. Much more to come as we approach those September sessions.

House GOP: We Have a Plan

House Republicans in Congress have a plan for their quickly-approaching fall/winter session. Will it be carried out? Based on recent experiences, one has to be skeptical. But a plan to tackle relief for small businesses and specific costly regulations is a good first step.

The Small Business & Entrepreneurship Council says the following was included in a memo from Majority Leader Eric Cantor of Virginia to caucus members:

The House GOP plans to repeal specific regulations, and advance broader regulatory reform bills such as the REINS Act and Regulatory Flexibility Improvements Act.  In addition, there will be forthcoming action on a bill to allow small business owners to take a tax deduction equal to 20% of their income. Hopefully, the House will move quickly on this pro-growth proposal.

The House GOP will move to repeal the 3% withholding mandate on government contractors. As SBE Council and its allies have argued, this withholding tax would especially burden small business contractors by worsening cash flow conditions and putting small firms at a competitive disadvantage in the government procurement marketplace. The mandate will also raise costs for taxpayers and state and local governments.      

The "top 10 job-destroying regulations" identified by the GOP leadership, and the time-table for congressional action follows:

NLRB’s Boeing Ruling (Action: Week of September 12): H.R. 2587, the Protecting Jobs From Government Interference Act, would take the common sense step of preventing the NLRB from restricting where an employer can create jobs in the United States.

Utility MACT and CSAPR (Action: Week of September 19): H.R. 2401, the Transparency in Regulatory Analysis of Impacts on the Nation (TRAIN) Act would require a cumulative economic analysis for specific EPA rules, and specifically delay the final date for both the utility MACT and CSAPR rules until the full impact of the Obama Administration’s regulatory agenda has been studied.

Boiler MACT (Action: Week of October 3):  H.R. 2250, the EPA Regulatory Relief Act would provide a legislative stay of four interrelated rules issued by the EPA in March of this year.  The legislation would also provide the EPA with at least 15 months to re-propose and finalize new, achievable rules that do not destroy jobs, and provide employers with an extended compliance period.

Cement MACT (Action: Week of October 3):  H.R. 2681, the Cement Sector Regulatory Relief Act would provide a legislative stay of these three rules and provide EPA with at least 15 months to re-propose and finalize new, achievable rules that do not destroy jobs, and provide employers with an extended compliance period.

Coal Ash (Action: October/November): H.R. 2273, the Coals Residuals Reuse and Management Act would create an enforceable minimum standard for the regulation of coal ash by the states, allowing their use in a safe manner that protects jobs.

Grandfathered Health Plans (Action: November/December): The Energy and Commerce, Ways and Means, and Education and Workforce committees will soon be working on legislation to repeal these ObamaCare restrictions. Small business owners and their employees will not be able to "keep the health care plans they currently have" as promised by President Obama and supporters of the health care law.

Ozone Rule (Action: Winter): This effective ban or restriction on construction and industrial growth for much of America is possibly the most harmful of all the currently anticipated Obama Administration regulations. Consequences would reach far across the U.S. economy, resulting in an estimated cost of $1 trillion or more over a decade and millions of jobs. 

Farm Dust (Action: Winter): The EPA is expected to issue revised standards for particulate matter (PM) in the near future. The House will act on H.R. 1633, the Farm Dust Regulation Prevention Act. H.R. 1633 would protect American farmers and jobs by establishing a one year prohibition against revising any national ambient air quality standard applicable to coarse PM and limiting federal regulation of dust where it is already regulated under state and local laws.

Greenhouse Gas (Action: Winter): The EPA’s upcoming greenhouse gas new source performance standards (NSPS) will affect new and existing oil, natural gas, and coal-fired power plants, as well as oil refineries, nationwide. 

NLRB’s Ambush Elections (Action: Winter): This summer, the NLRB issued a notice of proposed rulemaking that could significantly alter current union representation election procedures, giving both employers and employees little time to react to union formations in the future. The result will increase labor costs and uncertainty for nearly all private employers in the U.S. The House will soon consider legislation that will bring common sense to union organizing procedures to protect the interests of both employers and their workers.