House Session 2011-07-12 (11:59:45-13:02:24)


IN ORDER. THE PRAYER WILL BE OFFERED BY OUR CHAPLAIN, FATHER CONROY. CHAPLAIN CONROY: LET US PRAY. LOVING AND GRACIOUS GOD, WE GIVE YOU THANKS FORGIVING US ANOTHER DAY. WE ASK TODAY THAT YOU BLESS THE MEMBERS OF THIS ASSEMBLY TO BE THE BEST AND MOST FAITHFUL SERVANTS OF THE PEOPLE THEY SERVE. PURIFY THEIR INTENTIONS THAT THEY WILL SAY WHAT THEY BELIEVE AND ACT CONSISTENTLY WITH THEIR WORDS. LET THEM BE FILLED WITH GRATITUDE FROM THE OPPORTUNITY THEY HAVE TO SERVE IN THIS PLACE. WE THANK YOU FOR THE ABILITIES THEY HAVE BEEN GIVEN TO DO THEIR WORK, TO CONTRIBUTE TO THE COMMON GOOD. MAY THEY USE THEIR TALENTS AS GOOD STEWARDS OF YOUR MANY GIFTS AND THEREBY BE TRUE SERVANTS OF JUSTICE AND PARTNERS IN PEACE. WE THANK YOU AS WELL FOR THIS MARVELOUS FORUM WHERE THE IMPORTANT BUSINESS OF THIS NATION HAS BEEN DONE IN THE PAST AND IS DONE TODAY. MAY THE WORK BEING DONE NOW BE GUIDED BY YOUR SPIRIT. MAY ALL THAT IS DONE THIS DAY IN THE PEOPLE’S HOUSE BE FOR YOUR GREATER HONOR AND GLORY, AMEN. THE CHAIR HAS EXAMINED THE JOURNAL OF THE LAST DAY’S PROCEEDINGS AND ANNOUNCES TO THE HOUSE HIS APPROVAL THEREOF. THE JOURNAL STANDS APPROVED. THE PLEDGE OF ALLEGIANCE TODAY WILL BE LED BY THE GENTLEMAN FROM ARKANSAS, MR. CRAWFORD. I PLEDGE ALLEGIANCE TO THE FLAG OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA AND TO THE REPUBLIC FOR WHICH IT STANDS, ONE NATION, UNDER GOD, INDIVISIBLE, WITH LIBERTY AND JUSTICE FOR ALL. THE CHAIR WILL ENTERTAIN UP TO 15 REQUESTS FOR ONE-MINUTE SPEECHES ON EACH SIDE OF THE AISLE. FOR WHAT PURPOSE DOES THE GENTLEMAN FROM TEXAS RISE?
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REQUEST PERMISSION TO ADDRESS THE HOUSE FOR ONE MINUTE. WITHOUT OBJECTION, SO ORDERED. MR. SPEAKER, OVER THE WEEKEND JOHN WESLEY NERO GOT INTO AN ARGUEMENT WITH HIS MOTHER AND HIS GRANDMOTHER SO BEING A SCOUNDRAL HE BEAT THEM BOTH UP AND THEN FLED IN THE DARKNESS OF THE NIGHT. LOCAL BOW MONTH, TEXAS, POLICE OFFICERS CONFRONTED THE OUTLAW TO CONFRONT HIM BUT HE FLED AWAY AND A HIGH SPEED CHASE OCCURRED. MEANWHILE OFFICER BRIAN HUBERT, RIGHT HERE IS A PHOTOGRAPH OF HIM, HAD POSITIONED HIS VEHICLE AHEAD OF THE CHASE. HE ATTEMPTED TO RETRIEVE ROAD SPIKES OUT OF THE TRUNK TO STOP NERO’S VEHICLE. ACCORDING TO WITNESSES, WHEN NERO SPOTTED HUBERT’S CAR, NERO INTENTIONALLY CRASHED INTO HUBERT’S PATROL CA CAR, SHOVING THE VEHICLE OVER OFFICER HUBERT AND KILLING HIM. OFFICER BRIAN HUBERT, 36 WARKSES A 10-YEAR VETERAN OF THE POLICE DEPARTMENT. JOHN WESLEY NERO IS CHARGED WITH CAPITAL MURDER. POLICE OFFICERS LIKE OFFICER HUBERT PROTECT FROM US KILLERS LIKE NERO. THEY ARE THE WALL BETWEEN THE LAW AND THE LAWLESS. THE BARRIER BETWEEN US AND EVIL DOERS. SO TODAY THE BADGES OF PEACE OFFICERS IN SOUTHEAST TEXAS ARE COVERED WITH THE BLACK CLOTH OF SACRIFICE IN HONOR OF OFFICER HEBERT.
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A LAW MAN WHO SACRIFICED LIFE TO UPHOLD THE LAW. AND THAT’S JUST THE WAY IT IS. FOR WHAT PURPOSE DOES THE GENTLEMAN FROM OHIO SEEK RECOGNITION? I REQUEST
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FOR ONE MINUTE. PERMISSION TO ADDRESS THE HOUSE THE
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GENTLEMAN IS RECOGNIZED FOR ONE MINUTE. SOCIAL SECURITY DIDN’T CREATE THE DEFICIT, BUT AMERICA’S SENIORS ARE BEING PRESENTED WITH A FAKE SOCIAL SECURITY CRISIS. TO TRY TO TRICK THEM INTO ACCEPTING REDUCED BENEFITS. SOCIAL SECURITY WILL BE ABLE TO PAY 100% OF ITS BENEFITS THROUGH 2037 WITHOUT ANY CHANGES WHAT SOOFER. SO WHY THE PANIC TODAY? IF SENIORS ACCEPT CUTS IN SOCIAL SECURITY BENEFITS TODAY, A SURPLUS CASH FLOW WILL BUILD IN THE SOCIAL SECURITY TRUST FUND. ACCORDING TO C.I.S., QUOTE, SOCIAL SECURITY’S CASH SURPLUSES ARE BORROWED BY THE U.S. TREASURY AND CAN BE USED FOR TAX CUTS, SPENDING OR REPAYING DEBT. SO HERE’S WHAT’S GOING ON. SOCIAL SECURITY BENEFIT CUTS ARE INCREASEING TAXES PAID TO SOCIAL SECURITY OR EXTENDING RETIREMENT AGE WILL GIVE MORE MONEY FOR TAX CUTS SPENDING EXCEPT FOR ONE THING, SOCIAL SECURITY MONEY BELONGS TO THOSE WHO HAVE PAID INTO THE FUND, IT’S NOT THE GOVERNMENT’S MONEY TO USE IT, IT SHOULDN’T BE THE GOVERNMENT’S MONEY TO PLAY WITH. SENIOR CITIZENS SHOULD NOT HAVE TO ACCEPT A REDUCED STANDARD OF LIVING TO FINANCE TAX CUTS FOR THE RICH. WE MUST TAKE A STAND FOR SENIOR CITIZENS AND PROTECT SOCIAL SECURITY AND PROTECT FUTURE GENERATIONS FROM THIS RAID ON SOCIAL SECURITY FUNDS. THE GENTLEMAN’S TIME HAS EXPIRED. FOR WHAT PURPOSE DOES THE GENTLEMAN FROM ARKANSAS RISE? REQUEST PERMISSION TO ADDRESS THE HOUSE FOR ONE MINUTE. THE GENTLEMAN IS RECOGNIZED FOR ONE MINUTE. THANK YOU, MADAM SPEAKER. I RISE TODAY IN SUPPORT OF
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ENGINEERS DIRECTED TOWARD FUNDING FOR THE ARMY CORPS OF IMPROVING INFRASTRUCTURE IN THE DAMAGED LEVEE SYSTEM THAT NEEDS CRITICAL RESTORATION AFTER THIS HISTORIC SEASON OF FLOODING. THE UNPRECEDENTED FLOODING ALONG THE LOWER MISSISSIPPI RIVER VALLEY TOUCHED EVERY PART OF THE FIRST DISTRICT OF ARKANSAS, MY HOME DISTRICT, AND PROFOUNDLY IMPACTED OUR WAY OF LIFE. HOMES AND PROPERTY WERE DAMAGED, BUSINESSES WERE CLOSED AND A VAST AMOUNT OF CROP LAND WAS UNDER WATER SHORTLY AFTER PLANTING SEASON HAD BEGUN. PRELIMINARY ESTIMATES OF CROP DAMAGE ACROSS ARKANSAS HAS SURPASSED HALF A BILLION DOLLARS, A HUGE TOLL ON MY DISTRICT’S AGRICULTURE-BASED ECONOMY. THIS BILL PROVIDES FARMERS WITH THE INSURANCE NECESSARY TO REINVEST IN FUTURE PRODUCTION. MUCH OF AMERICA’S COMMODITIES ARE PRODUCED ALONG THE MISSISSIPPI DELTA AND WE MUST TAKE THE NECESSARY STEPS TO ENSURE OUR SAFE AND RELIABLE FOOD SUPPLY IS PROTECTED. THIS VITAL INVESTMENT IN OUR NATION’S INFRASTRUCTURE AND LEVEE SYSTEM WILL PROVIDE SECURITY NOT ONLY TO OUR FARMERS BUT THE FAMILIES WHO LIVE AND WORK THERE AS WELL AS OUR CONSUMERS ALL ACROSS THE COUNTRY. WITH THAT I YIELD BACK. THE GENTLEMAN YIELDS BACK THE BALANCE OF HIS TIME. FOR WHAT PURPOSE DOES THE
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GENTLEWOMAN FROM CALIFORNIA RISE? REQUEST PERMISSION TO ADDRESS THE HOUSE FOR ONE MINUTE. THE
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GENTLEWOMAN IS RECOGNIZED FOR ONE MINUTE. MADAM SPEAKER, I COME TO THE HOUSE FLOOR TODAY TO PAY TRIBUTE TO A MAN OF EXCEPTIONAL VALOR, A QUIET HERO, A COMMITTED FAMILY MAN, A SUCCESSFUL ENTREPRENEUR AND MY CONSTITUENT, LEONARD EARL ROBERTS SR. HE LIVED AN EXTRAORDINARY LIFE. HE JOINED THE CIVILIAN CONSERVATION CORPS AT 16 AND LATER VOLUNTARILY ENLISTED IN THE U.S. ARMY AFTER THE ATTACK ON PEARL HARBOR. PLATOON SERGEANT ROBERTS LED A SPECIAL UNIT ASHORE ON D-DAY. HE AND HIS ENTIRE SQUADRON RECEIVED THE BRONZE INDIAN ARROW HEAD FOR ASSAULT TROOPERS AND HE
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AFTER HE WAS HONORABLY RECEIVED THE PURPLE HEART. DISCHARGED AT THE CLOSE OF THE WAR, MR. ROBERTS RETURNED HOME TO CLAIM THE HAND OF HIS CHILDHOOD SWEETHEART, DEZZY, AND THEN USED THE G.I. BILL TO ATTEND THE MASSACHUSETTS INSTITUTE OF TECHNOLOGY. MR. ROBERTS USED HIS M.I.T. ENGINEERING DEGREE TO INVENT A MACHINE THAT WOULD REVOLUTIONIZE THE AEROSPACE INDUSTRY AND IN 1972 IN CALIFORNIA, WHEN HIS WIFE AND FAMILY BY HIS SIDE, LEONARD SR. ESTABLISHED ROBERTS AEROSPACE MANUFACTURING ENGINEERING CORPORATION, ONE OF
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INDUSTRY. TODAY’S LEADING COMPANIES IN THE LEONARD EARL ROBERTS SR. WAS A GREAT AMERICAN BORN OF A GREAT GENERATION. HE WAS A MAN OF SERVICE, HONOR, INTEGRITY, FAITH AND FAMILY. HE LIVED AN INSPIRATIONAL LIFE AND OUR NATION WILL FOREVER BE ENRICHED BECAUSE OF HIM. THANK YOU. THE GENTLEWOMAN’S TIME HAS EXPIRED. FOR WHAT PURPOSE DOES THE GENTLEMAN FROM NEW HAMPSHIRE RISE? THE GENTLEMAN IS RECOGNIZED FOR ONE MINUTE. THANK YOU, MADAM SPEAKER. MADAM SPEAKER, I RISE TODAY TO ADDRESS THE ISSUE OF JOBS AND JOB CREATION IN OUR COUNTRY. FOR 29 CONSECUTIVE MONTHS WE
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. HAVE SEEN UNEMPLOYMENT EXCEED 8% BACK IN JUNE WE ANNOUNCED 18,000 JOBS WERE CREATED IN CAN THIS COUNTRY, FOR A NOW 9.2% UNEMPLOYMENT RATE. IN NEW HAMPSHIRE I’VE ESTABLISHED A GETTING PEOPLE BACK TO WORK INITIATIVE WHERE I’VE HOSTED TWO JOB FAIRS, OVER 200 PEOPLE HAVE ATTENDED. BACK HERE IN WASHINGTON, PEOPLE LIKE THAT GENTLEMAN NEED US TO PASS A BALANCED BUDGET, TO REDUCE OUR SPENDING, TO REDUCE OUR DEBT AND DEFICIT AND GET SERIOUS ABOUT CREATING AN ENVIRONMENT WHERE SMALL BUSINESS CAN ONCE AGAIN SUCCEED IN OUR COUNTRY.
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I HAVE AND HOPE THAT THE SENATE AND THE ADMINISTRATION WILL JOIN THE
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HOUSE IN THIS EFFORT. I YIELD BACK. THE GENTLEMAN YIELDS BACK THE BALANCE OF HIS TIME. FOR WHAT PURPOSE DOES THE GENTLEWOMAN FROM NEW YORK RISE? THE GENTLEWOMAN IS RECOGNIZED FOR ONE MINUTE. MADAM SPEAKER, I RESPECTFULLY SUGGEST A SMALL CORRECTION TO THE REPUBLICAN STATEMENT THAT THEIR POSITION ON THE DEFICIT NEGOTIATIONS IS NO NEW TAXES. IT WOULD BE FAR MORE ACCURATE FOR THEM TO STATE THAT THEIR POSITION IS NO NEW TAXES EXCEPT FOR SENIORS. BECAUSE SHARP INCREASES TO PARTICIPATE IN THE COST OF MEDICARE AND MEDICAID OR DECREASES IN THE BENEFITS OF SOCIAL SECURITY WOULD ACT JUST LIKE A TAX INCOME TARGETED RIGHT AT THE ELDERLY. THE REPUBLICAN PROPOSAL FOR MEDICARE WOULD HIT RETIRED SENIORS IMMEDIATELY BY REOPENING THE DOUGHNUT HOLE AND ACCORDING TO A REPORT BY THE JOINT ECONOMIC COMMITTEE FROM MY HOME STATE OF NEW YORK IT WOULD COST FUTURE RETIREES AN ADDITIONAL $6,500 OUT OF POCKET. YOU CAN CALL THAT SOME SORT OF ADJUSTMENT IF YOU’D LIKE BUT I CALL IT A TAX AND I CALL IT WRONG. GROVER NOR QUEST AGREES. HE SAYS CHANGES TO THE C.P.I. IS A STEALTH TAX INCREASE. WRONG FOR OUR SENIORS, WRONG FOR THE ECONOMY AND WRONG FOR THE COUNTRY.
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THE GENTLEWOMAN’S TIME HAS EXPIRED. FOR WHAT PURPOSE DOES THE GENTLEMAN FROM ILLINOIS RISE? REQUEST PERMISSION TO ADDRESS THE HOUSE FOR ONE MINUTE. THE
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GENTLEMAN IS RECOGNIZED FOR ONE MINUTE. THANK YOU, MADAM SPEAKER. 9.2% UNEMPLOYMENT IN JUNE, 29 MONTHS IN A ROW OF OVER 8% UNEMPLOYMENT. 20 MILLION AMERICANS REMAIN UNEMPLOYED OR UNDEREMPLOYED. IT HAS TO STOP. THESE ARE STARK REMINDERS THAT PRESIDENT OBAMA’S EXCESSIVE SPENDING, UNPRECEDENTED DEBT AND OVERREGULATION AS WELL AS THE THREATS OF JOB-KILLING TAXES ON SMALL BUSINESSES AND ENTREPRENEURS ARE HOLDING BACK PRIORITY SECTOR JOB CREATION IN OUR ECONOMY. AMERICAN JOB CREATORS FEAR THE REGULATORY AND FISCAL ENVIRONMENT THEY WILL FACE IN THE NEAR FUTURE. UNTIL THEY HAVE SOME CERTAINTY THEY WILL NOT INVEST OR HIRE. WE’RE WORKING HARD TO BRING BACK THAT CERTAINTY AND ENSURE OUR PROGROWTH ECONOMIC ENVIRONMENT, BY DOING THAT WE MUST CUT RED TAPE, CUT SPENDING AND KEEP TAXES LOW, BUT ALSO PASS LEGISLATION TO EXPAND DOMESTIC ENERGY PRODUCTION AND OPEN NEW MARKETS FOR AMERICAN GOODS OVERSEAS. WE NEED PRESIDENT OBAMA — AND HIS PARTY, TO STOP TRYING TO RAISE TAXES ON JOB CREATORS AND INSTEAD EMBRACE OUR COMMONSENSE PROPOSAL TO PUT AMERICANS BACK TO WORK. I YIELD BACK. THE GENTLEMAN’S TIME HAS EXPIRED. FOR WHAT PURPOSE DOES THE GENTLEMAN FROM ILLINOIS RISE?
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MINUTE. TO ADDRESS THE HOUSE FOR ONE THE
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GENTLEMAN IS RECOGNIZED FOR ONE MINUTE. THANK YOU, MR. SPEAKER. AS SECRETARY GEITHNER HAS OBSERVED, FAILURE TO RAISE THE DEBT CEILING WOULD HAVE CATASTROPHIC ECONOMIC CONSEQUENCES THAT WOULD LAST FOR DECADES. THIS WAS ASSURED BY FORMER TREASURY SECRETARY PAULSON WHO SAID THAT INACTION IS SIMPLY NOT AN OPTION. I AGREE. AND BELIEVE THAT RAISING THE DEBT CEILING MUST BE ACCOMPANIED BY DEFICIT REDUCTION. ALSO BY CUTTING SPENDING, BUT ALSO BY ELIMB HIT THATTING SOME UNNECESSARY — ELIMINATING SOME UNNECESSARY TAX BREAKS. THERE ARE THOSE WHO SAY THERE ARE NO UNNECESSARY TAX BREAKS. LET ME JUST GIVE YOU ONE. IF YOUR NEIGHBOR GUYS — BUYS A CAR AND PAYS INTEREST ON THE LOAN TO BUY THAT CAR, THAT INTEREST IS NOT TAX DEDUCTIBLE. IF YOUR OTHER NEIGHBOR BUYS AAT AND PAYS INTEREST — BUYS A YACHT AND PAY INTERESTS TO BUY THAT, THAT INTEREST IS TAX DEDUCTIBLE. WHEN WE’RE BORROWING 40 CENTS FOR EVERY DOLLAR, WE HAVE TO ASK OURSELVES IF THOSE TAX BREAKS ARE REALLY WORTH IT. IF WE’RE STARTING FROM SCRATCH, WOULD WE REALLY GIVE YACHT OWNERS AN EXTRA TAX BREAK? THANK YOU AND I YIELD BACK. THE GENTLEMAN’S TIME HAS EXPIRED. FOR WHAT PURPOSE DOES THE GENTLEMAN FROM MICHIGAN RISE? REQUEST PERMISSION TO ADDRESS THE HOUSE FOR ONE MINUTE. THE
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GENTLEMAN IS RECOGNIZED FOR ONE MINUTE. THANK YOU, MADAM SPEAKER. IT WAS WITH GREAT SADNESS THAT WEST MICHIGAN LEARNED ON FRIDAY OF THE PASSING OF OUR FIRST LADY, BETTY FORD. THE FIRST LADY SPENT MOST OF HER LIFE IN GRAND RAPIDS, A GRADUATE OF CENTRAL HIGH SCHOOL SHE WORKED IN A DEPARTMENT STORE DOWNTOWN AND WAS A DANCE INSTRUCTOR. EARLY ON, MRS. FORD SHOWED HER HEART FOR THE DISADVANTAGED IN OUR COMMUNITY, TEACHING DANCE TO CHILDREN WHO WERE PHYSICALLY DISABLED, DEAF AND BLIND. A MUTUAL FRIEND INTRODUCED MRS. FORD TO JERRY IN 1947. THE SUCCESSFUL LAWYER AND FORMER STAR OF THE UNIVERSITY OF MICHIGAN’S FOOTBALL TEAM, THE FUTURE PRESIDENT WAS NOT QUITE IN PUBLIC LIFE WHEN THEY MET. NO ONE COULD HAVE FORESEEN THE SET OF CIRCUMSTANCES THAT THRUST THE FORDS INTO THE WHITE HOUSE. BUT MRS. FORD TOOK THE CHALLENGE WITH GUSTO AND AS FIRST LADY SHE REVEALED MANY OF HE’S STRUGGLES TO THE PUBLIC SO SHE COULD HELP OTHERS WITH SIMILAR DIFFICULTIES. IN THE 1970’S SHE PUBLICLY SPOKE ABOUT HER BAT WELL BREAST CANCER WHICH IS NOT OFTEN DISCUSSED DURING THAT TIME. AND IN THE 198S TO SHE TOOK THE LESSONS SHE LEARNED BATTLING ALCOHOLISM TO FUND A NUMBER OF INSTITUTES DEDICATED TO HELPING OTHERS WITH THE AFFLICTION. WE ARE PROUD TO CALL SUCH A FINE CITIZEN ONE OF OUR OWN.
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. I YIELD BACK. FOR WHAT PURPOSE DOES THE GENTLEMAN FROM CONNECTICUT RISE? PERMISSION TO ADDRESS THE HOUSE FOR ONE MINUTE. THE
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GENTLEMAN IS RECOGNIZED FOR ONE MINUTE. PRESIDENT RONALD REAGAN SAID THE FOLLOWING, THE FULL CONSEQUENCES AFTER DEFAULT OR EVEN SERIOUS PROSPECT OF DEFAULT BY THE UNITED STATES ARE IMPOSSIBLE TO PREDICT AND AWE SOME TO CONTEMPLATE.
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AND CREDIT OF THE UNITED STATES DENIGRATION OF THE FULL FAITH WOULD HAVE SUBSTANTIAL EFFECTS ON DOMESTIC FINANCIAL MARKETS AND THE VALUE OF THE DOLLAR IN EXCHANGES MARKETS. THE RISKS, COSTS, DISRUPTIONS, AND THE DAMAGE LEAD ME TO ONE CONCLUSION, THE SENATE MUST PASS THIS LEGISLATION BEFORE THE CONGRESS ADJOURNS. THANK GOODNESS CONGRESS HAD THE GOOD SENSE TO LISTEN AND PASS A HIGHER DEBT LIMIT WITH NO CONDITIONS AT A TIME, BY THE WAY, WHEN MEDICARE SOLVENCY WAS FAR WORSE THAN IT IS TODAY. AND 16 MORE TIMES DURING THE REAGAN PRESIDENCY. TODAY WE HAVE THE HEAD OF THE NATIONAL REPUBLICAN PARTY SAYING YESTERDAY, DON’T WORRY, THE GOVERNMENT WILL FIND SOME OTHER WAY TO PAY ITS BILLS. THAT IS DANGEROUS NONSENSE. IT IS TIME FOR THE REPUBLICAN PARTY TO STOP PLAYING RUSSIAN ROULETTE WITH THE AMERICAN ECONOMY AND AMERICAN FAMILIES. LET’S PASS A CLEAN DEBT LIMIT AND MOVE ON TO GROWING THE U.S. ECONOMY AND CREATE JOBS. I YIELD BACK THE BALANCE OF MY TIME. THE GENTLEMAN’S TIME HAS EXPIRED. FOR WHAT PURPOSE DOES THE GENTLEMAN FROM TENNESSEE RISE?
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TO ADDRESS THE HOUSE FOR ONE MINUTE. THE
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GENTLEMAN IS RECOGNIZED FOR ONE MINUTE. ON SUNDAY LIKE MILLIONS OF OTHER AMERICANS I WAS WATCHING THE WOMEN’S SOCCER TEAM PLAY IN GERMANY. WHAT A WONDERFUL MOMENT IT WAS WHEN THEY CAME BACK AT THE LAST SECOND AND CLUTCHED — GRABBED VICTORY FROM DEFEAT. ABBY WAMBACH’S HEADER AND THE SAVE BY HOPE SOLO AND FIVE KICKS BY THE AMERICAN WOMEN MADE US PROUD TO BE AMERICANS. THE AMERICAN SOCCER TEAM WON AND THEY ARE GOING TO PLAY AGAIN TOMORROW AND WE NEED TO CHEER FOR THEM. AMY, WHEN ASKED ABOUT HER KICK, SAID, IT WAS SOMETHING ABOUT BEING AN AMERICAN. WE DON’T GIVE UP. WE KNOW WE CAN WIN. AND WE DON’T GIVE UP AND WE WIN. I WOULD ASK MY REPUBLICAN COLLEAGUES TO REMEMBER ABBY WAMBACH AND NOT GIVE UP AND WIN ON THE DEFICIT BECAUSE OTHERWISE WE’LL BE LOSERS IN THE EYES OF THE WORLD ON OUR ECONOMICS AND
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DEBT. OUR ABILITY TO FINANCE OUR OWN GO UNITED STATES OF AMERICA. I YIELD BACK. THE
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BALANCE OF HIS TIME. GENTLEMAN YIELDS BACK THE FOR WHAT PURPOSE DOES THE GENTLEMAN FROM INDIANA RISE? I ASK UNANIMOUS CONSENT TO
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ADDRESS THE HOUSE FOR ONE MINUTE. REVISE AND EXTEND, MADAM SPEAKER. THE
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GENTLEMAN IS RECOGNIZED FOR ONE MINUTE. THANK YOU. WELL, NEGOTIATIONS OVER THE NATION’S DEBT CEILING HAVE REACHED AN IMPASSE AFTER MORE THAN TWO YEARS IN OFFICE, TRILLIONS OF DOLLARS IN BORROWING AND SPENDING AND BAILOUTS, AND TAKEOVERS, THE PRESIDENT NOW SAYS THE FAILURE TO REACH AN AGREEMENT IS BECAUSE OF REPUBLICANS IN THE CONGRESS. REPUBLICANS WHO WERE IN THE MINORITY IN THE LAST CONGRESS, IN FACT. THE PRESIDENT SAYS BECAUSE REPUBLICANS IN WASHINGTON HAVEN’T FULLY REALIZED THAT THE PHILOSOPHY OF POLITICS DOES NOT WORK IN GOVERNING.
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HE’S TELLING US TO EAT OUR PEAS. OK. THE PRESIDENT BASICALLY IS SAYING THE CONGRESS OWNS THE PROBLEM. THAT’S NOT WHAT HE SAID FIVE YEARS AGO. EXPLAINING HIS OPPOSITION TO RAISING THE DEBT CEILING THEN SENATOR BARACK OBAMA SAID, QUOTE, THE FACT WE ARE HERE TODAY RAISING AMERICA’S DEBT LIMIT IS A SIGN OF LEADERSHIP FAILURE. HE SAID DOING SO WEAKENS US DOMESTICALLY.
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HERE. LEADERSHIP MEANS THE BUCK STOPS AMERICA HAS A DEBT PROBLEM AND FAILURE OF LEADERSHIP. HE SAID AMERICANS DESERVE BETTER.
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I SAY, SENATOR OBAMA, YOU WERE RIGHT. WHEN THE U.S. GOVERNMENT CAN’T PAY ITS BILLS, IT’S NOT ONLY A DEBT PROBLEM IT IS A FAILURE OF LEADERSHIP AT THE PRESIDENTIAL LEVEL JUST AS YOU SAID. THE TRUTH IS IT’S THE PRESIDENT’S PROBLEM. IF PRESIDENT OBAMA WANTS TO RAISE THE DEBT CEILING, HE SHOULD BRING BACK —
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THE GENTLEMAN’S TIME HAS EXPIRED. AND COME TO THE CONGRESS TO ASK US TO STEP FORWARD AND HELP HIM SOLVE THAT PROBLEM BY CUTTING SPENDING NOW.
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THE GENTLEMAN’S TIME HAS EXPIRED. AND SENDING A BALANCED BUDGET AMENDMENT TO THE STATES. THE GENTLEMAN’S TIME HAS EXPIRED. FOR WHAT PURPOSE DOES THE GENTLEWOMAN FROM HAWAII RISE? PERMISSION TO ADDRESS THE HOUSE FOR ONE MINUTE. THE
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GENTLEMAN IS RECOGNIZED FOR ONE MINUTE. THANK YOU, MADAM SPEAKER. WE CAN ALL AGREE THAT WE NEED TO BRING DOWN OUR DEFICIT, BUT WE DISAGREE ON HOW TO DO IT. REPUBLICANS IN CONGRESS SAY THAT THE ONLY WAY TO DO THIS IS TO GUT THE SERVICES THAT AMERICAN FAMILIES RELY ON. THEIR PRIORITY IS TO PROTECT THE WEALTHIEST AMONG US WHO CONTINUE
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BREAKS. TO ENJOY LOOPHOLES AND TAX THEY SHOULD BE PAYING THEIR FAIR SHARE. SOCIAL SECURITY IS A PROMISE TO EVERY AMERICAN WORKER FOR YEARS OF HARD WORK AND PROVIDES DIGNITY IN RETIREMENT AND HELP TO SUPPORT SURVIVING CHILDREN. TODAY NEARLY 55 MILLION AMERICANS RELY ON SOCIAL
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HAWAII. SECURITY, INCLUDING 214,000 IN THE PROGRAM IS VILETAL TO WOMEN, PARTICULARLY SINGLE WOMEN, WHO DISPROPORTIONATELY FACE POVERTY IN OLD AGE. THE AMERICAN MIDDLE CLASS AND OUR SENIORS DESERVE A FAIR SOLUTION ON THE DEFICIT THAT GETS OUR ECONOMY BACK ON TRACK AND CREATES JOBS. BUT NOT, NOT ON THE BACKS OF OUR FAMILIES AND SENIORS. I YIELD BACK THE BALANCE OF MY TIME. THE GENTLEWOMAN YIELDS BACK THE BALANCE OF HER TIME. FOR WHAT PURPOSE DOES THE GENTLEWOMAN FROM MARYLAND RISE? MADAM SPEAKER, PERMISSION TO ADDRESS THE HOUSE FOR ONE MINUTE. REVISE AND EXTEND MY REMARKS. THE
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GENTLEMAN IS RECOGNIZED FOR ONE MINUTE.
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THANK YOU, MADAM SPEAKER. THE ONGOING STUBBORNNESS BY MY REPUBLICAN COLLEAGUES TO EVEN GENERAL TAIN THE IDEA OF INCREASING REVENUES IS PUTTING OUR COUNTRY AT RISK. OVER THE PAST DECADE THE TOP 2% OF AMERICANS MAKING OVER
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$250,000 HAVE DONE INCREDIBLY WELL. AND WHILE THEY HAVE ENJOYED REDUCED TAXES AS A RESULT OF THE BUSH YEAR TAX CUTS, OUR SENIORS OR WORKERS DON’T EVEN COME CLOSE. THEY HAVE LOST PENSION, 401-K PLANS, HOME VALUES, AND ALL THAT’S LEFT IS SOCIAL SECURITY AND MEDICARE. AS YOU CAN SEE HERE THESE TAX CUTS ARE THE PRIMARY CONTRIBUTOR TO OUR DEBT AND DEFICIT OVER THE LONG TERM. MADAM SPEAKER, DEFAULT ON AMERICA’S DEBT WOULD BE CATASTROPHIC TO BOTH OUR ECONOMY AND THE WORLD. IT’S TIME FOR MY REPUBLICAN COLLEAGUES TO GET SERIOUS, STOP PLAYING WITH FIRE, AND PUT THE FUTURE OF THE NATION FIRST AHEAD OF MILLIONAIRES, CORPORATIONS THAT AVOID TAXES, AND BENEFIT FROM LOOPHOLES IN THE LAW AND AHEAD OF THOSE WHO SHIP JOBS OVERSEAS. SO, NO, SENIORS AND THOSE ARE DISABILITIES DIDN’T CAUSE THIS DEFICIT AS WE CAN SEE IN THE LONG-TERM DEBT AND THEY SHOULDN’T HAVE TO CUT THEIR BENEFITS TO PAY FOR IT. WITH THAT I YIELD. THE GENTLELADY’S TIME HAS EXPIRED. FOR WHAT PURPOSE DOES THE GENTLEMAN FROM RHODE ISLAND RISE? I ASK UNANIMOUS
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CONSENT TO ADDRESS THE HOUSE FOR ONE MINUTE. THE
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GENTLEMAN IS RECOGNIZED FOR ONE MINUTE. MADAM SPEAKER, LAST WEEK’S JOBS REPORT SHOWING UNEMPLOYMENT RATE GOING IN THE WRONG DIRECTION FROM 9.1% TO 9.2% UNDERSCORES THE URGENT NEED TO FOCUS ON POLICIES IN THIS HOUSE THAT HELP CREATE JOBS AND GROW THE ECONOMY. PART OF THAT AGENDA SHOULD BE PASSAGE OF THE OFFSHORING PREVENTION ACT OF 2011 WHICH I INTRODUCED LAST WEEK. AT A TIME WHEN WE SHOULD BE WORKING TO RESTORE OUR MANUFACTURING SECTOR, WE ARE UNDERMINING IT BECAUSE OUR TAX CODE ACTUALLY REWARDS COMPANIES
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OVERSEAS. THAT SEND MANUFACTURING JOBS THE OFFSHORE AND PREVENTION ACT WILL CLOSE THE TAX LOOPHOLE THAT ALLOWS THIS TO HAPPEN. IT’S BEEN 27 WEEKS SINCE THE MAJORITY PARTY TOOK CONTROL OF THIS HOUSE AND THEY HAVE DONE NOTHING TO CREATE JOBS. THEY HAVEN’T EVEN BROUGHT A SINGLE JOBS BILL TO THE HOUSE FLOOR. WHILE THEY HAVE BEEN ON THE MOST IMPORTANT PRIORITY FOR OUR COUNTRY, DEMOCRATS HAVE PUT FORTH OUR JOBS AGENDA, THE MAKE IT IN AMERICA AGENDA, WHICH WILL HELP REBUILD OUR MANUFACTURING BASE, INVEST IN POLICY THAT KEEP GOOD PAYING JOBS HERE IN AMERICA AND ALLOW US TO COMPETE IN THE GLOBAL ECONOMY. MADAM SPEAKER, THIS IS THE KIND OF LEGISLATION WE SHOULD BE PURSUING HERE IN THIS HOUSE. SENSIBLE LEGISLATION THAT HELPS OUR RECOVERING ECONOMY, HELPS US COMPETE IN THE GLOBAL MARKETPLACE, AND PUTS AMERICANS BACK TO WORK. THANK YOU. THE GENTLEMAN’S TIME HAS EXPIRED. FOR WHAT PURPOSE DOES THE GENTLEMAN FROM NEW MEXICO RISE?
835
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MINUTE. TO ADDRESS THE HOUSE FOR ONE REVISE AND EXTEND. THE GENTLEMAN IS RECOGNIZED FOR ONE MINUTE. MADAM SPEAKER, I RISE TODAY TO HONOR THE BRAVERY AND VALOR OF SERGEANT FIRST CLASS LEROY PETRI OF SANTA FE WHO WILL BE AWARDED THE MEDAL OF HON YAR TODAY BY PRESIDENT OBAMA. AS THE SECOND LIVING RECIPIENT, HIS HEROISM AND SACRIFICE IN THE FACE OF EXTREME DANGER WENT ABOVE AND BEYOND THE CALL OF DUTY. AS AN ARMY RANGER SERVING IN AFGHANISTAN, HE ACTED WITHOUT REGARD FOR HIS OWN PERSONAL SAFETY. THINKING ONLY OF HIS FELLOW SOLDIERS WHEN HE THREW A GRENADE AWAY FROM HIS SQUAD. HIS SELFLESS ACTIONS COST HIM HIS RIGHT HAND. HE SAVED THE LIVES OF HIS BROTHERS IN ARMS. NEW MEXICO HAS A LONG TRADITION OF SERVING OUR COUNTRY DURING TIMES OF WAR. WORLD WAR II NAVAJO CODE TALKERS CONTRIBUTED TO THE VICTORY OF OUR ALLIED FORCES. 71 DAUGHTERS AND SONS OF NEW MEXICO HAVE MADE THE ULTIMATE SACRIFICE IN SERVICE DURING THE AFGHANISTAN AND IRAQ WARS. AND NOW WITH HIS COURAGEOUS ACTIONS IN THE FACE OF GREAT DANGER, SARGEENT — SERGEANT PETRI TAKES HIS PLACE AMONG TRUE AMERICAN HEROES. I YIELD BACK THE BALANCE OF MY TIME.
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THE GENTLEMAN’S TIME HAS EXPIRED. FOR WHAT PURPOSE DOES THE GENTLEMAN FROM VERMONT RISE? TO ADDRESS THE HOUSE FOR ONE MINUTE. REVISE AND EXTEND. THE GENTLEMAN IS RECOGNIZED FOR ONE MINUTE.
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THANK YOU, MADAM SPEAKER. PRESIDENT REAGAN IS AN ICONIC FIGURE IN THE REPUBLICAN PARTY AND REVERED BY MANY DEMOCRATS. HE DID FIGHT TO SHRINK GOVERNMENT AND HE LOWERED TAXES, BUT HE ALSO RAISED TAXES EIGHT TIMES AND HE ALSO FOUGHT AGAINST THE ABSURD NOTION THAT AMERICA
900
00:25:46,000 –>00:25:45,999
HAD AN OPTION WHEN IT CAME TO PAYING OUR BILLS. WHEN THE DEBT CEILING HAD TO BE RAISED, HE DID IT BECAUSE HE KNEW THAT WAS ESSENTIAL. THAT WAS OUR RESPONSIBILITY. WE’VE GOT AN ARGUMENT ON THE OTHER SIDE TODAY THAT PAYING OUR BILLS IS OPTIONAL. THAT IS DANGEROUS, THAT IS ABSURD. THERE’S TWO ARGUMENTS THE OTHER SIDE IS MAKING, ONE IT’S OBAMA’S PROBLEM DESPITE THE FACT THEY INSISTED ON THE IRAQ WAR, AFGHANISTAN WAR, GOING INTO NATION BUILDINGS, TRUCTS WE CAN’T AFFORD. MEDICARE PRESCRIPTION PART D. SECOND, THIS IS WHAT’S REALLY NOT ON THE LEVEL, EVERY SINGLE PERSON WHO VOTED FOR THE RYAN BUDGET VOTED FOR A BUDGET THAT WILL RAISE THE DEBT FROM $14.3 TRILLION TO $23 TRILLION. AFTER VOTING FOR THAT BUDGET, NOW WILL VOTE AGAINST RAISING THE DEBT CEILING THAT IS REQUIRED TO IMPLEMENT THE BUDGET THAT YOU VOTED FOR. I YIELD BACK. THE GENTLEMAN’S TIME HAS EXPIRED. FOR WHAT PURPOSE DOES THE GENTLEMAN FROM CALIFORNIA RISE? MADAM SPEAKER, I ASK
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HOUSE FOR ONE MINUTE. UNANIMOUS CONSENT TO ADDRESS THE THE GENTLEMAN IS RECOGNIZED FOR ONE MINUTE. MADAM SPEAKER, AS NEGOTIATIONS CONTINUE IN THE UPCOMING DEBT CEILING, THE RETIREMENT SAVINGS, MORTGAGES, AND PENSIONS OF THE AMERICAN PEOPLE HANG IN THE BALANCE. IT IS LONG MAST TIME FOR BOTH SIDES, I SAY FOR BOTH SIDES TO GET SERIOUS ABOUT BALANCED BUDGET. ANY LONG-TERM TERM, MUST, MUST PROTECT MEDICARE AND SOCIAL SECURITY FOR ALL AMERICANS. CREATE JOBS HERE AT HOME. BEGIN TO REDUCE THE DEFICIT WITH INTELLIGENT CLASS PROTECTION. IT’S TIME FOR THE WEALTHIEST AMONG US TO STEP UP TO THE PLATE AND TAKE A FAIR SHARE. WE MUST END TAX BREAKS FOR ULTRARICH, BIG OIL COMPANIES, AND THE CORPORATIONS THAT SHIP JOBS OVERSEAS. NO JOBS HAVE BEEN CREATED, I STATE NO JOBS HAVE BEEN CREATED IN THE UNITED STATES SINCE THE TAX BUSH CUTS FIRST WENT INTO EFFECT. NO TAXES, NO JOBS. NO TAXES, NO JOBS. LET US PUT POLITICS ASIDE AND DO WHAT IS BEST FOR THE AMERICAN PEOPLE BEFORE IT IS TOO LATE. I YIELD BACK THE BALANCE OF MY TIME. THE GENTLEMAN’S TIME HAS EXPIRED. FOR WHAT PURPOSE DOES THE GENTLEMAN FROM MISSOURI RISE? UNANIMOUS CONSENT TO ADDRESS THE HOUSE FOR ONE MINUTE. THE GENTLEMAN IS RECOGNIZED FOR ONE MINUTE. THANK YOU, MADAM SPEAKER. THIS IMAGE DEPICTS A WATERSHED MOMENT FOR OUR NATION’S SENIOR CITIZENS. PRESIDENT HARRY TRUMAN CONCEIVED OF MEDICARE DURING HIS PRESIDENCY, AND RECEIVED THE FIRST MEDICARE CARD AFTER PRESIDENT JOHNSON SIGNED THE PROGRAM INTO LAW 46 YEARS AGO. WHEN 40% OF AMERICANS OVER THE AGE OF 65 LIVED AT OR BELOW THE POVERTY LEVEL, LARGELY DUE TO MEDICAL COSTS. NOW ONLY 10% LIVE IN POVERTY. BUT MY REPUBLICAN COLLEAGUES SEEK TO RADICALLY ALTER THIS SUCCESSFUL PROGRAM. THEIR PLAN WOULD DOUBLE ANNUAL OUT-OF-POCKET EXPENSES FROM 6,000 TO 12,000. WOULD GIVE INSURERS COMPANIES THE POWER TO RATION CARE AND FORCE SENIORS TO SPEND ANOTHER $2.2 BILLION ON PRESCRIPTION
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DRUGS BY REOPENING THE DOUGHNUT HOLE. MADAM SPEAKER, BALANCING THE BUDGET IS A NATIONAL PRIORITY. EVERYONE NEEDS TO WORK TOGETHER AND EVERYONE HAS TO SACRIFICE TO
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BUT MY REPUBLICAN COLLEAGUES GET OUR FISCAL HOUSE IN ORDER. CONTINUE TO ARGUE FOR SPECIAL INTEREST EXCEPTIONS FROM THAT NATIONAL SACRIFICE. THEY ARE LETTING OIL COMPANIES AND COMPANIES SENDING JOBS OVERSEAS OFF THE HOOK. WHY SHOULD PROFITABLE COMPANIES CONTINUE RECEIVING TAXPAYER SUBSIDIES WHILE WE ARE ASKING GRANDMA TO PAY MORE? MADAM SPEAKER, IF MEDICARE TURNS 46 LET’S GET SERIOUS. LET’S BE SURE THAT THIS IS A NATIONAL PRIORITY AND NATIONAL
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I YIELD BACK. SACRIFICE. THE GENTLEMAN’S TIME HAS EXPIRED. FOR WHAT PURPOSE DOES THE GENTLEMAN FROM KENTUCKY RISE? REQUEST PERMISSION TO ADDRESS THE HOUSE FOR ONE MINUTE. THE
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GENTLEMAN IS RECOGNIZED FOR ONE MINUTE. THANK YOU. MADAM SPEAKER, WE HAVE A LOT OF AMERICANS WHO ENGAGE IN VERY RECKLESS BEHAVIOR. BUT GENERALLY THAT RECKLESS BEHAVIOR ONLY AFFECTS THEM AND
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MAYBE THEIR FRIENDS OR NEIGHBORS. THE REPUBLICAN MAJORITY IN THIS CONGRESS IS RECKLESS ENOUGH THEY WANT TO ENDANGER 310 MILLION AMERICANS. RECKLESS ENOUGH THAT THEY WILL REFUSE TO PAY OUR DEBTS NO MATTER WHAT KIND OF A DEAL IS WORKED OUT. RECKLESS ENOUGH TO MAKE US DEFAULT ON THE FULL FAITH AND CREDIT OF THE UNITED STATES. RECKLESS ENOUGH TO RAISE INTEREST RATES ON NOT ONLY OUR DEBT, THEREBY MAKING THE DEFICIT WORSE, BUT ON EVERY AMERICAN WHO HAS A CREDIT CARD AND ADJUSTABLE
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MONEY. RATE MORTGAGE AND BORROWING RECKLESS ENOUGH ACCORDING TO A BIPARTISAN PANEL THAT CAME TO THIS BODY LAST WEEK TO TAKE AWAY 10% OF G.D.P., COSTING THIS COUNTRY HUNDREDS OF THOUSANDS IF NOT MILLIONS OF JOBS IN THE
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. MONTH OF AUGUST ALONE. WE HAVE A RESPONSIBILITY TO THE AMERICAN PEOPLE TO PERFORM FOR THE INTERESTS OF THEIR LIVES AND THIS COUNTRY AND RECKLESS BEHAVIOR, REFUSING TO RAISE THE DEBT LIMIT OF THE UNITED STATES IS ABOUT AS RECKLESS AS YOU CAN
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GET. WE NEED TO ACT RESPONSIBLY. I YIELD BACK. THE GENTLEMAN’S TIME HAS EXPIRED. FOR WHAT PURPOSE DOES THE GENTLEMAN FROM MINNESOTA RISE? ADDRESS THE HOUSE FOR ONE MINUTE. THE
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GENTLEMAN IS RECOGNIZED FOR ONE MINUTE. MADAM SPEAKER, LET ME DRAW YOUR ATTENTION TO THIS IMPORTANT CHART DRAFTED BY THE CONGRESSIONAL BUDGET OFFICE.
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DEBT ARE. IT SHOWS WHAT THE DRIVERS OF OUR NOW, THERE’S SOMETHING ON HERE THAT YOU SEE AND THERE’S SOMETHING ON HERE THAT YOU WON’T SEE.
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THIS IS THE ORANGE. WILL YOU SEE BUSH-ERA TAX CUTS. YOU WILL SEE THE WARS IN IRAQ AND AFGHANISTAN, THAT’S THE RED. YOU WILL SEE THE ECONOMIC DOWNTURN, THAT’S THE BLUE. THIS TINY LITTLE LINE HERE, THAT’S TARP AND FANNIE MAE AND FREDDIE MAC AND THESE ARE THE EXPENSES THAT WE PAID TO TRY TO GET OUR COUNTRY BACK ON TRACK, THE RECOVERY. WHAT DON’T YOU SEE? YOU DON’T SEE SOCIAL SECURITY, DON’T LET ANYBODY TELL YOU, MADAM SPEAKER, THAT SOCIAL
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IT’S NOT. SECURITY IS THE PROBLEM. SOCIAL SECURITY IS THE PROMISE ONE GENERATION MAKES TO ANOTHER SO THAT EVERY SENIOR IN AMERICA WILL LIVE IN DIGNITY. THAT’S WHAT IT’S FOR, THAT’S WHAT IT’S ABOUT. WE ARE NOT BEING UNREASONABLE WHEN WE DEMAND PROTECTION OF SOCIAL SECURITY. IT’S NOT DRIVING THE DEFICIT AND IT DOES HONOR OUR SENIORS AND THAT IS WHAT IT’S ALL ABOUT. THAT’S WHAT WE’RE GOING TO DO
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AND WE’RE NOT GOING TO GIVE UP ON THAT. THANK YOU. THE GENTLEMAN’S TIME HAS EXPIRED. FOR WHAT PURPOSE DOES THE GENTLEWOMAN FROM ILLINOIS RISE? MR. SPEAKER, I ASK UNANIMOUS CONSENT THAT ALL MEMBERS MAY HAVE FIVE LEGISLATIVE DAYS IN WHICH TO REVISE AND EXTEND THEIR REMARKS AND INCLUDE EXTRANEOUS MATERIAL ON H.R. 1309. WITHOUT OBJECTION. PURSUANT TO HOUSE RESOLUTION 340 AND RULE 18, THE CHAIR DECLARES THE HOUSE IN THE COMMITTEE OF THE WHOLE HOUSE ON THE STATE OF THE UNION FOR CONSIDERATION OF H.R. 1309. THE CHAIR APPOINTS THE GENTLEWOMAN FROM NORTH CAROLINA, MS. FOXX, TO PRESIDE OVER THE COMMITTEE OF THE WHOLE. THE HOUSE IS IN THE COMMITTEE OF THE WHOLE HOUSE ON THE STATE OF THE UNION FOR THE CONSIDERATION OF H.R. 130 WHICH THE CLERK WILL REPORT BY TITLE — 1309 WHICH THE CLERK WILL REPORT BY TITLE. TO ACHIEVE REFORMS TO IMPROVE THE FINANCIAL INTEGRITY AND STABILITY OF THE PROGRAM AND TO INCREASE THE ROLE OF PRIVATE MARKETS IN THE MANAGEMENT OF FLOOD INSURANCE RISK AND FOR OTHER PURPOSES. PURSUANT TO THE RULE, THE BILL IS CONSIDERED READ THE FIRST TIME. THE GENTLEWOMAN FROM ILLINOIS, MRS. BIGGERT, AND THE GENTLEWOMAN FROM CALIFORNIA, MS. WATERS, EACH WILL CONTROL 30 MINUTES. THE CHAIR RECOGNIZES THE GENTLEWOMAN FROM ILLINOIS. MADAM SPEAKER, I ASK UNANIMOUS CONSENT THAT THE FOLLOWING LETTERS BE INSERTED FOR THE RECORD. A LETTER DATED JUNE 2, 2011, FROM THE COMMITTEE ON FINANCIAL SERVICES, CHAIRMAN SPENCER BACHUS TO THE COMMITTEE ON THE JUDICIARY, CHAIRMAN LAMAR SMITH, A LETTER DATED JUNE 2, 2011, FROM THE COMMITTEE ON THE
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JUDICIARY, CHAIRMAN LAMAR SMITH, TO THE COMMITTEE ON FINANCIAL SERVICES CHAIRMAN, SPENCER BACHUS. A LETTER DATED JUNE 2, 2011, FROM THE COMMITTEE ON FINANCIAL SERVICES CHAIRMAN, BACHUS, TO COMMITTEE ON SCIENCE, SPACE AND TECHNOLOGY CHAIRMAN HALL, AND A LETTER DATED JUNE 2, 2011, FROM THE COMMITTEE ON SCIENCE, SPACE
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AND TECHNOLOGY CHAIRMAN HALL TO THE COMMITTEE ON FINANCIAL SERVICES CHAIRMAN BACHUS. THOSE WILL BE CONSIDERED UNDER GENERAL LEAVE. THE GENTLEWOMAN IS RECOGNIZED. THANK YOU, MADAM CHAIRMAN, AND I YIELD MYSELF SUCH TIME AS I MAY CONSUME. THE GENTLEWOMAN IS RECOGNIZED. MR. CHAIRMAN, I RISE IN SUPPORT OF H.R. 1309, THE FLOOD INSURANCE REFORM ACT
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I’D LIKE TO THANK APPELLATE OF 2011. WATERS AND ALL THE MEMBERS — MS. WATERS AND ALL THE MEMBERS FROM BOTH SIDES OF THE ILET WHO
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HELPED TO CRAFT THIS BILL. ON MAY 13, THE FINANCIAL SERVICES COMMITTEE FAVORABLY REPORTED THE FLOOD ACT BY A UNANIMOUS VOTE OF 54-0. THIS BILL IS IMPORTANT AND REFLECTS THE HARD WORK AND BIPARTISAN SUPPORT OF THE FINANCIAL SERVICES COMMITTEE. IT WOULD RE-AUTHORIZE FOR FIVE YEARS THE NATIONAL FLOOD INSURANCE PROGRAM AND S.I.P., THE BILL WOULD ENACT A SERIES OF REFORMS DESIGNED TO, NUMBER ONE, IMPROVE NFIB’S FINANCIAL STABILITY, TWO, TO REDUCE THE BURDEN ON TAXPAYERS, THREE, RESTORE INTEGRITY TO FEMA MAPPING SYSTEM, FOUR, TO EXPLORE WAYS TO INCREASE PRIVATE MARKET PARTICIPATION, AND, SIX, TO HELP BRING CERTAINTY TO THE HOUSING MARKET. FOR OVER 40 YEARS TAXPAYERS HAVE SUBSIDIZED FLOOD INSURANCE PREMIUMS FOR POLICY HOLDERS, TO IMPROVE NFIB’S FINANCIAL STABILITY, H.R. 1309 PHASES IN SOUND RATES FOR POLICY HOLDERS AND PHASES OUT TAXPAYER SUBSIDIZED RATES. AND TO RESULT THE CONGRESSIONAL BUDGET OFFICE STATED THAT THE BILL GENERATES $4.2 BILLION AND ABSENT A KATRINA-LIKE CATASTROPHE THE BILL WILL ACTUALLY ACCELERATE NFIB’S PAYMENTS ON ITS $17.75 BILLION DEBT TO THE TAXPAYER. AS IT STANDS NFIB HAS ALREADY PAID BACK TAXPAYERS ABOUT $1.8 BILLION. BUT PERHAPS MOST IMPORTANTLY H.R. 1309 ELIMINATES A BARRIER TO THE DEVELOPMENT OF A PRIVATE FLOOD INSURANCE MARKET AND PUTS US ON A PATH TOWARDS A RESPONSIBLE LONG-TERM PLAN THAT ELIMINATES TAXPAYER RISK. FOR THE FIRST TIME POLICY HOLDERS CAN CHOOSE PRIVATE FLOOD INSURANCE OVER GOVERNMENT FLOOD INSURANCE WITHOUT THE RISK OF LENDER REJECTION AND THE BILL ELIMINATES TAXPAYER SUBSIDIZED RATES SO THAT THE PRIVATE SECTOR CAN OFFER CONSUMERS INCREASINGLY COMPETITIVE RATES COMPARED TO THE NF BIMBINGS,. SECOND, FEMA IS REQUIRED TO SOLICIT BIDS TO DETERMINE THE COST OF THE PRIVATE SECTOR, NOT
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OF FLOOD INSURANCE. TO THE TAXPAYER BEARING THE RISK THIRD, IT REQUIRES THAT G.A.O. AND FEMA EVALUATE THE FEASIBILITY OF VOLUNTARY COMMUNITY-BASED FLOOD INSURANCE. AND, FOURTH, THE BILL REITERATES FEMA’S EXISTING AUTHORITY TO PURCHASE FREE INSURANCE FROM THE PRIVATE SECTOR AS AN ALTERNATIVE TO THE U.S. TREASURY AND TAXPAYERS SERVING AS A BACKSTOP TO NFIB. AND FINALLY THE BILL ADDRESSES MANY OF THE CONCERNS THAT MEMBERS HAVE RAISED WITH US ABOUT NEW MAPS, ESPECIALLY AS
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DESSERTFICATIONS. THEY RELATE TO THE DAM AND LEVEE IT ALLOWS COMMUNITIES TO SUSPEND THE REQUIREMENT TO PURCHASE FLOOD INSURANCE WHILE THEY WORK TO CONSTRUCT OR FIX THEIR FLOOD PROTECTION SYSTEMS. MADAM CHAIRMAN, WHEN CONGRESS CREATED NFIB, THERE WAS NO FLOOD INSURANCE MARKET. TAXPAYERS WERE PROVIDING INCREASINGLY AMOUNTS OF DIRECT ASSISTANCE TO DISASTER RELIEF TO FLOOD VICTIMS. WITHOUT REFORMS CONTAINED IN THIS BILL, TAXPAYERS WILL NEVER BE ABLE TO PAY BACK THE DEBT THEY ARE OWED, HOMEOWNERS AND BUSINESSES WILL HAVE LIMITED OR NO ACCESS TO FLOOD INSURANCE AND CONGRESS WILL INEVITABLY HAVE TO BAIL OUT FLOOD DISASTER VICTIMS AS IT DID PRIOR TO 1968. WE CANNOT ALLOW THIS TO HAPPEN. THIS BILL IS THE FIRST SIGNIFICANT REFORM TO THE PROGRAM IN NEARLY A DECADE, THE NFIB IS TOO IMPORTANT TO LET LAPSE AND TOO IN DEBT TO CONTINUE WITHOUT REFORM. I LOOK FORWARD TO TODAY’S AMENDMENTS AND DEBATE AND URGE MY COLLEAGUES TO SUPPORT THE UNDERLYING BILL. AND I RESERVE THE BALANCE OF MY TIME. THE GENTLEWOMAN
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RESERVES THE BALANCE OF HER TIME. THE GENTLEWOMAN FROM CALIFORNIA IS RECOGNIZED.
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THANK YOU, MADAM CHAIRWOMAN. I YIELD MYSELF SUCH TIME AS I MAY CONSUME.
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THE GENTLEWOMAN IS RECOGNIZED. THANK YOU VERY MUCH. I RISE TODAY IN STRONG SUPPORT OF H.R. 1309, THE FLOOD INSURANCE REFORM ACT OF 2011. BEFORE I BEGIN MY REMARKS I WOULD LIKE TO THANK CHAIRMAN SPENCER BACHUS, CHAIRWOMAN JUDY BIGGERT AND RANKING MEMBER BARNEY FRANK FOR THEIR ASSISTANCE AND SUPPORT WITH THIS BILL. WE WERE ABLE TO WORK IN A BIPARTISAN MANNER ON THIS BILL AND OUR COMMITTEE, PASSING IT ON A VOTE OF 54-0. THE SPIRIT OF CORPORATION BETWEEN REPUBLICANS AND DEMOCRATS ON THIS BILL HAS BEEN EXTREMELY WELCOME AND THIS IS WHY I’M PROUD TO BE AN ORIGINAL CO-SPONSOR OF THIS BILL. MADAM CHAIRWOMAN, EARLIER THIS YEAR I INTRODUCED SIMILAR LEGISLATION, H.R. 1026, THE FLOOD INSURANCE REFORM PRIORITIES ACT, A VERSION OF MY BILL PASSED THE HOUSE LAST YEAR ON A BIPARTISAN VOTE AND I HOPE THAT THE BILL OFFERED BY THE GENTLEWOMAN FROM S WILL ALSO PASS THE HOUSE WITH SIGNIFICANT SUPPORT FROM BOTH PARTIES. THE FLOOD INSURANCE PROGRAM IS MORE IMPORTANT NOW THAN EVER BEFORE. FLOODS ARE THE MOST COMMON NATURAL DISASTER AND FLOOD INSURANCE IS THE MOST EFFECTIVE MEANS FOR HELPING FAMILIES TO REBUILD AFTER A FLOOD. THEREFORE IT IS VITAL THAT FLOOD INSURANCE REMAIN ACCESSIBLE, AFFORDABLE AND AVAILABLE TO THE 5.5 MILLION HOMEOWNERS WITH POLICIES AND THE MANY MORE WHO MAY WANT OR NEED TO PURCHASE THEM. UNFORTUNATELY THE LACK OF A LONG-TERM AUTHORIZATION HAS PLACED THE FLOOD INSURANCE PROGRAM AT RISK. THE PROGRAM LAPSED THREE TIMES LAST YEAR. THESE LAPSES MEANT THAT FEMA WAS NOT ABLE TO WRITE NEW POLICIES, RENEW EXPIRING POLICIES OR INCREASE COVERAGE LIMITS. GIVEN THE CURRENT CRISIS IN THE HOUSING MARKET, THIS INSTABILITY IN THE FLOOD INSURANCE PROGRAM IS UNACCEPTABLE AND MUST BE ADDRESSED. I AM PLEASED THAT THE GENTLEWOMAN’S BILL NOT ONLY RE-AUTHORIZES THE PROGRAM FOR FIVE YEARS BUT ALSO PROVIDES THE PROGRAM WITH THE TOOLS IT NEEDS TO RETURN TO A STRONG FINANCIAL FOOTING WHILE PROTECTING HOMEOWNERS. THE BILL ALSO ADDRESSES THE IMPACT OF NEW FLOOD MAPS ON COMMUNITIES. THE MAPPING PROCESS HAS CAUSED CONFUSION AND FINANCIAL STRAIN ON HOMEOWNERS WHO NOW FIND THEMSELVES IN FLOOD ZONES AND SUBJECT TO MANDATORY PURCHASE REQUIREMENTS. I SAW THIS FIRSTHAND IN MY HOME CITY OF LOS ANGELES. LAST YEAR I WAS ABLE TO ASSIST HOMEOWNERS IN AN AREA OF THE CITY WHO HAD BEEN MISTAKENLY PLACED IN A FLOOD ZONE. IN THAT CASE FEMA ACTED QUICKLY TO RESPOND TO NEW DATA AND CORRECT THE MISTAKE. HOWEVER THERE ARE THOUSANDS OF HOMEOWNERS NATIONWIDE WHO NOW FIND THEMSELVES IN FLOOD ZONES AND SUBJECT TO MANDATORY PURCHASE REQUIREMENTS. THE GENTLEWOMAN’S BILL WOULD EASE THE FINANCIAL STRAIN ON NEWLY MAPPED HOMEOWNERS BY ALLOW FOR A THREE-YEAR DELAY OF THE MANDATORY PURCHASE REQUIREMENT AND ALLOWS FOR A FIVE-YEAR PHASE-IN OF ACTUAL RATES AFTERWARDS. IN ADDITION, I KNOW THAT THE GENTLEMAN FROM ALABAMA, THE CHAIRMAN OF THE COMMITTEE, WILL BE OFFERING AN AMENDMENT SIMILAR TO THE ONE I OFFERED AT MARKUP THAT WOULD EXTEND THE THREE-YEAR DELAY TO FIVE YEARS. I KNOW THAT THE GENTLEMAN HAS WORKED WITH THE BIPARTISAN COALITION, OF HEBS OF THE HOUSE — OF MEMBERS OF THE HOUSE AND I LOOK FORWARD TO PASSAGE OF THAT AMENDMENT. TO MAKE SURE THAT FEMA ISSUES THE MOST ACCURATE MAPS, THE BILL ESTABLISHES A TECHNICAL MAPPING ADVISORY COUNCIL. BY IMPROVING THE MAPPING PROCESS, THE COUNCIL WILL PREVENT INSTANCES OF ERRONEOUS FLOOD MAPS LIKE THE ONE I ENCOUNTERED IN PARK MESA
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HEIGHTS. THE BILL ALSO MAKES OTHER IMPROVEMENTS TO THE PROGRAM BY PHASING IN RATES FOR PREFORM PROPERTIES, RAISING MAXIMUM COVERAGE LIMITS, PROVIDING NOTICE TO RENTERS ABOUT CONTENTS INSURANCE AND ALLOWING HOMEOWNERS THAT RECEIVE LETTERS OF MAP AMENDMENTS TO BE REIMBURSED FOR THEIR COST. MR. CHAIRMAN, MADAM CHAIR OBAMA, — CHAIRWOMAN, I BELIEVE THAT MRS. BIGGERT AND I HAVE PRODUCED A GOOD BILL THAT WILL PROTECT HOMEOWNERS, THE FLOOD INSURANCE PROGRAM AND TAXPAYERS. I HOPE THAT WE CAN PASS THIS BILL TODAY AND THAT THE SENATE TAKES UP FLOOD INSURANCE REFORM IN SHORT ORDER SO THAT WE DO NOT RISK ANOTHER LAPSE WHEN THE PROGRAM EXPIRES ON SEPTEMBER 30 OF THIS YEAR. AGAIN, I THANK THE GENTLEWOMAN FROM ILLINOIS FOR HER TREMENDOUS WORK ON THIS BILL AND I STRONGLY URGE AN AYE VOTE. I RESERVE THE BALANCE OF MY TIME. THE GENTLEWOMAN RESERVES.
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RECOGNIZED. THE GENTLEWOMAN FROM ILLINOIS IS I YIELD TWO MINUTES TO THE GENTLELADY FROM WEST VIRGINIA, MRS. CAPITO. THE GENTLEWOMAN FROM
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TWO MINUTES. WEST VIRGINIA IS RECOGNIZED FOR THANK YOU, MADAM CHAIR. I RISE IN SUPPORT OF THE LEGISLATION THAT IS BEFORE US TODAY, TO REFORM THE NATIONAL FLOOD INSURANCE PROGRAM. I’D LIKE TO THANK THE GENTLELADY FROM ILLINOIS, MRS. BIGGERT, AND MS. WATERS, FOR THEIR HARD WORK TO BRING FORTH A BIPARTISAN BILL WHICH ADDRESSES MANY OF THE CONCERNS TO A PROGRAM HAMPERED BY EXTRAORDINARY LOSSES AND CURRENTLY FACING ABOUT $18 BILLION OF DEBT. H.R. 1309 PROVIDES A LONG-TERM EXTENSION OF THE NATIONAL FLOOD INSURANCE PROGRAM BUT IT MAKES SIGNIFICANT — IT MAKES A SIGNIFICANTLY INDEBTED PROGRAM MORE FISCALLY SOUND. A FIVE-YEAR RE-AUTHORIZATION WILL GIVE THE CERTAINTY THAT IS NEEDED TO A PROGRAM THAT HAS BEEN WITHOUT IT FOR THE PAST TWO
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. YEARS. WHEN MORE THAN FIVE MILLION POLICY HOLDERS DEPEND ON IT FOR FINANCIAL SECURITY AGAINST FLOODING. UNLESS CONGRESSIONAL ACTION IS TAKEN ON SEPTEMBER 30, 2011, THESE POLICY HOLDERS WILL BEGIN TO BE AGAIN IN DANGER OF LOSING PROTECTION. UNFORTUNATELY THE PERSISTENCE SUBSIDIZED RATES FOR PROPERTIES IN HIGH RISK AREAS HAS LEFT THE NFIP UNDERFUNDED AND AT RISK. THIS BILL MAKES NEEDED REFORMS TO PUT PREMIUMS MORE IN LINE WITH RISK BY INCORPORATING RATES FOR AT RISK PROPERTIES. INCREASING THE LIMIT ON ANNUAL PREMIUM RATE INCREASES WILL GRADUALLY PHASE OUT SUBSIDIZED PREMIUMS AND HELP REDUCE
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. TAXPAYER EXPOSURE. THIS ALLOWS PROPERTY RELIEF FROM THE MANDATORY PURCHASE REQUIREMENT FOR UP TO THREE YEARS SO THEY MAY BE ABLE TO PLAN BETTER TO BEING NEWLY MAPPED INTO A SPECIAL FLOOD AREA. THIS GIVES US A CHANCE TO GIVE LONG-TERM CERTAINTY TO POLICYHOLDERS AS WELL AS INSURERS WHO PARTICIPATE IN THE
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IN THIS STILL UNSURE HOUSING PROGRAM. MARKET, IT IS CRITICAL WE PROVIDE AS MUCH CLARITY AS POSSIBLE TO CURRENT AND FUTURE HOMEOWNERS. I’M VERY PLEASED THIS LEGISLATION LOOKS AT PRIVATIZATION INITIATIVES AND THE POSSIBILITIES THAT THE PRIVATE MARKET AS WELL AS REINSURANCE CAN PLAY IN PROTECTING COMMUNITIES AGAINST FUTURE FLOOD DAMAGES. IT IS MY HOPE THAT WE WILL PASS THIS BILL AND AGAIN I WANT TO CONGRATULATE THE GENTLEWOMAN FOR HER HARD WORK.
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THE GENTLELADY’S TIME HAS EXPIRED. THE GENTLEWOMAN FROM CALIFORNIA IS RECOGNIZED. THANK YOU VERY MUCH. MADAM CHAIRWOMAN, I YIELD TO THE GENTLELADY FROM NEW YORK, THREE MINUTES. SHE HAS BEEN VERY MUCH INVOLVED IN THE DEVELOPMENT OF THIS
1608
00:47:18,000 –>00:47:17,999
AND WORKED VERY HARD. LEGISLATION. I YIELD THREE MINUTES. THE GENTLEWOMAN FROM NEW YORK IS RECOGNIZED FOR THREE MINUTES. THANK YOU, MADAM CHAIRMAN, I’D ALSO LIKE TO THANK MS.
1616
00:47:28,000 –>00:47:27,999
TIME. WATERS FOR OFFERING ME THIS IT’S BEEN A PLEASURE WORKING WITH HER. I’D ALSO LIKE TO THANK CHAIRMAN BA CUSS AND SUBCOMMITTEE BIGGERT WHO WE WORKED ON BECAUSE THIS IS SOMETHING IMPORTANT TO BOTH OUR DISTRICTS. ALSO THANKING MEMBER BARNEY FRANK. H.R. 1309, THE FLOOD INCHSHURENS REFORM ACT OF 2011 RE-AUTHORIZES THE NATIONAL FLOOD INSURANCE PROGRAM FOR FIVE YEARS, BUT PROVIDES MUCH NEEDED REFORMS TO THE NATIONAL FLOOD INSURANCE PROGRAM. MY DISTRICT IN LONG ISLAND, ESPECIALLY THE COMMUNITY OF VALLEY STREAM, WAS INCLUDED IN THE EARLY ROUNDS OF THE FEMA’S IMPLEMENTATION OF THE FLOOD MAP MODERNIZATION PROCESS AND WE HAVE EXPERIENCED MUCH OF THE FRUSTRATIONS ASSOCIATED WITH THE PROCESS. THE WHOLE IDEA OF REDOING WHAT WE ARE DOING IN THIS FLOOD MAP IS HOPEFULLY TO PRESENT OTHER MEMBERS OF CONGRESS — PREVENT OTHER MEMBERS OF CONGRESS FROM BEING FRUSTRATED AS MUCH AS I HAVE WHEN THEY ARE TRYING TO HELP THEIR COMMUNITY. SINCE OUR MAPS WERE ENACTED IN 2009, I HEAR DAILY FROM OUR FRUSTRATED HOMEOWNERS WHO ARE REQUIRED TO PURCHASE FLOOD INSURANCE BECAUSE OF THE UPDATED MAPS AND WHO FEEL THEY DID NOT HAVE THE TIME OR TOOLS NECESSARY
1658
00:48:43,000 –>00:48:42,999
MAP’S RESULTS. TO UNDERSTAND AND RESPOND TO THE H.R. 1309 CONTAINS PROVISIONS TO BETTER INFORM HOMEOWNERS WHO ARE REQUIRED TO PURCHASE FLOOD INSURANCE BECAUSE OF UPDATED MAPS. FOR EXAMPLE, THE BILL REQUIRES FEMA TO NOTIFY FEDERALLY ELECTED OFFICIALS WHEN THEY ARE — THERE ARE CHANGES TO A FLOOD ZONE OR MAP DIRECTLY IN THEIR DISTRICT. THE BILL ALSO REQUIRES FEMA TO CREATE A METHOD FOR FLOOD INSURANCE POLICIES TO BE PAID FOR THE INSTALLMENT PAYMENTS TO EASE THE BURDEN OF HAVING TO PAY FOR UP FRONT FULL PAYMENT WHICH CAN COST THOUSANDS OF DOLLARS. THE BILL ALSO ALLOWS FOR HOMEOWNERS WHO ARE IN THEIR REDUCED COST PREFER RISK POLICY PROGRAM TO ENTER INTO THE FIVE-YEAR PHASE IN FULL ACTUARY RATES WHEN THE EXTENDED RATE EXPIRES IN THE YEAR 2013. TOE TO ENSURE THE ACCURACY OF THE DATA AND PROCESS, FEMA USED IN CREATING THE UPDATED MAPS AROUND THE COUNTRY, H.R. 1309 ALSO CREATES A TECHNICAL MAPPING COUNSEL MADE OF AGENCY EMPLOYEES, EXPERTS IN THE FIELD OF MAPPING TO DEVELOP NEW MAPPING STANDARDS FOR FUTURE MAP MODERNIZATION ACTIVITIES. WE NEED TO USE EVERY TOOL AVAILABLE TO BRING RELIEF TO HOMEOWNERS WHO ARE BEING BURDENED BY FEMA’S MAP AUTHORIZATION PROGRESS. AND THE BILL BEFORE US IS A GOOD START. I’D LIKE ALSO TO SAY ONCE AGAIN WORKING WITH MY COLLEAGUE, MRS. BIGGERT, WORKING ON THE SUBCOMMITTEE HAS BEEN A REALLY GOOD PROCESS. WE HAVE BEEN ABLE TO BRING OUR EXPERIENCES, WHAT WILL HAPPEN IN MY COMMUNITY IN VALLEY STREAM, AND THE FRUSTRATION THE HOMEOWNERS HAVE GONE THROUGH. THIS LEGISLATION, THOUGH IT DOESN’T CURE EVERYTHING, IT WILL HELP CONSTITUENTS AND THOSE THAT HAVE NOT HAD THEIR MAPS DONE
1715
00:50:31,000 –>00:50:30,999
FORWARD. YET, THIS IS A GOOD WAY OF GOING WITH THAT I YIELD BACK THE BALANCE OF MY TIME. THE GENTLELADY’S TIME HAS EXPIRED. THE GENTLEWOMAN FROM ILLINOIS IS RECOGNIZED.
1723
00:50:41,000 –>00:50:40,999
THANK YOU, MADAM CHAIRMAN. I YIELD 1.5 MINUTES TO THE GENTLEMAN FROM TENNESSEE, MR. FINCHER, A MEMBER OF THE FINANCIAL SERVICES COMMITTEE. THE GENTLEMAN FROM TENNESSEE IS RECOGNIZED FOR 1 1/2 MINUTES. THANK YOU. I STAND BEFORE YOU TODAY BECAUSE MY DISTRICT RECENTLY SUFFERED SEVERE FLOODING THIS SPRING AND SUMMER, WHICH WE ARE NOW JUST BEGINNING TO RECOVER FROM. THE FLOODING OF THE MISSISSIPPI RIVER CAUSED BY AN UNUSUAL AMOUNT OF RAIN FROM BACK-TO-BACK STORMS LEFT THOUSANDS OF TENNESSEANS WITH FLOOD DAMAGE. IN MY DISTRICT ALONE, OVER 3,000 HOMES WERE DAMAGED BY STORMS AND FLOODS AND OVER 4,000 PEOPLE REGISTERED FOR DISASTER ASSISTANCE. BECAUSE THE MISSISSIPPI RIVER BORDERS 110 MILES OF TENNESSEE’S EIGHTH CONGRESSIONAL DISTRICT, MANY SMALL TOWNS AND FARMS ARE SUBJECT TO UNPREDICTABLE FLOODING EACH YEAR. WITH THIS IN MIND, I AM PLEASED TO SUPPORT H.R. 1309 TODAY. H.R. 1309 RE-AUTHORIZES THE NATIONAL FLOOD INSURANCE PROGRAM FOR FIVE YEARS WHICH WOULD PROVIDE SOME CERTAINTY TO THE ECONOMY AND TO THE NATIONAL HOUSING MARKET. DURING A PERIOD OF 9.2% UNEMPLOYMENT, WE NEED THIS CERTAINTY TO BOOST THE HOUSING CONSTRUCTION INDUSTRY AND TO HELP CREATE BADLY NEEDED JOBS. ANOTHER REASON I AM SUPPORTING H.R. 1309 TODAY IS THIS LEGISLATION ENCOURAGES GREATER PRIVATE SECTOR PARTICIPATION IN THE NATIONAL FLOOD INSURANCE PROGRAM. MADAM CHAIRMAN, IF WE ARE TO REDUCE FEDERAL SPENDING AND THE SIZE OF GOVERNMENT IN OUR LIVES, WE NEED TO PUT EVERY PROGRAM ON THE TABLE AND ANALYZE WAYS WE CAN ENCOURAGE THE PRIVATE SECTOR
1779
00:52:23,000 –>00:52:22,999
RISK. TO SHOULDER MORE GOVERNMENT I AM PLEASED TO SUPPORT H.R. 1309 AND ENCOURAGE MY COLLEAGUES TO VOTE IN FAVOR OF THIS BILL. WITH THAT I YIELD BACK. THE GENTLEMAN’S TIME HAS EXPIRED.
1787
00:52:34,000 –>00:52:33,999
IS RECOGNIZED. THE GENTLEWOMAN FROM CALIFORNIA THANK YOU VERY MUCH, MADAM CHAIRWOMAN. I AM SO PLEASED TO ANNOUNCE THREE MINUTES OF TIME FOR MR. BLUMENAUER FROM OREGON. HE HAS A LONG HISTORY IN THIS AREA AND THE NATIONAL FLOOD INSURANCE ACT OF 2004 BEARS HIS NAME. I APPRECIATE HIS SUPPORT. I YIELD THREE MINUTES. THE GENTLEMAN FROM OREGON IS RECOGNIZED FOR THREE MINUTES. I APPRECIATE THE GENTLEMAN’S COURTESY AS I APPRECIATE HER LEADERSHIP AND CHAIR BIGGERT FOR BRINGING THIS IMPORTANT LEGISLATION TO THE
1808
00:53:07,000 –>00:53:06,999
FLOOR. IT IS TRUE. I HAVE BEEN WORKING IN THESE AREAS FOR THE LAST 10 YEARS TO MAKE SURE THAT THE PROGRAM IS STABLE IN THE LONG TERM. ENCOURAGE PARTICIPATION. AND HERE WE ARE RAISING RATES WHERE NECESSARY TO MORE ACCURATELY REFLECT FLOOD RISK. FOR TOO LONG HOMEOWNERS IN LOW-RISK AREAS HAVE BEEN SUBSIDIZING THOSE IN HIGH-RISK
1821
00:53:29,000 –>00:53:28,999
AREAS ALL BACKED BY THE FEDERAL TAXPAYERS. THIS BILL WILL MAKE THE PROGRAM
1824
00:53:33,000 –>00:53:32,999
CLOSER TO BEING ACTUARIALLY SOUND. I APPRECIATE THE WORK DONE TO DEAL WITH REPEPIVELY FLOODED PRORS WHICH COMPRISE 2% OF THE PROPERTIES INSURED IN THE PROGRAM BUT RESPONSIBLE FOR 30% OF THE CLAIMS. WE DO PEOPLE NO FAVORS BY PAYING THEM TO REBUILD IN THE SAME WAY AND SAME PLACE TIME AND TIME AGAIN IN HARM’S WAY. THAT’S WHY I STRONGLY SUPPORT THE AMENDMENT THAT HAS BEEN INCLUDED IN THE EN BLOC TO RE-AUTHORIZE AND STREAMLINE A NUMBER OF MITIGATION PROGRAMS TOWARD TARGETED TOWARDS REPETITIVE FLOOD PROGRAM. I AUTHORED WITH MY COLLEAGUE FROM NEBRASKA A PROGRAM TO HE PROVIDE MITIGATION ASSISTANCE FOR SEVERE REPET TIP LOSS PROPERTIES. UNFORTUNATELY SINCE 2004 WE FOUND THE PROGRAM HAS BEEN HARD FOR FEMA TO ADMINISTER. WHEN THEY HAVE BEEN ABLE TO GET THE PROGRAM OFF THE GROUND, IT’S ALLOWED MITIGATION OF ALMOST 600 PROPERTIES AND SAVED ABOUT $125 MILLION. BUT IF WE ARE ABLE TO MOVE FORWARD HERE, ALLOWING THE PROGRAM TO WORK RIGHT, IT CAN MAKE A HUGE LONG-TERM DIFFERENCE BOTH IN THE LIVES OF PROPERTY OWNERS AS WELL AS THE FISCAL STABILITY OF THE PROGRAM. THE WATERS AMENDMENT ADDRESSES THE ADMINISTRATIVE PROGRAMS BY COMBINING THREE MITIGATION
1866
00:54:50,000 –>00:54:49,999
PROGRAMS INTO ONE STREAMLINED PROVISION. REMOVE RED TAPE AND ENABLE FEMA TO MORE EASILY WORK WITH THE COMMUNITIES TO MITIGATE THE PROPERTIES. IT’S IMPORTANT TO NOTE THAT IT DOES NOT COST THE TAXPAYERS ANY MONEY. THE MONEY FOR MITIGATION COMES FROM THE FLOOD INSURANCE FUND, MADE UP OF PREMIUM DOLLARS AND EACH DOLLAR SPENT ON MITIGATION
1879
00:55:12,000 –>00:55:11,999
FUTURE. SAVES THE FUND FAR MORE IN THE I APPRECIATE THE WORK OF MRS. BIGGERT, MS. WATERS, CHAIR BACHUS, RAHM FRANK, AND THE — RANKING MEMBER FRANK, AND THE COMMITTEE TO DIG INTO THE DETAILS TO ENSURE FEMA HAS THE TOOLS IT NEEDS TO ADDRESS THE
1888
00:55:29,000 –>00:55:28,999
PROPERTIES COSTING THE PROGRAM THE MOST. THIS IS GOING TO GO A LONG WAY TOWARDS HELPING PEOPLE OUT OF THE CYCLE OF FLOODING AND WILL HELP REDUCE THE HEAVY DRAIN THAT THESE PROPERTIES HAVE ON THE FLOOD INSURANCE PROGRAM. THANK YOU. I YIELD BACK. THE GENTLEMAN YIELDS BACK THE BALANCE OF HIS TIME.
1900
00:55:47,000 –>00:55:46,999
RECOGNIZED. THE GENTLEWOMAN FROM ILLINOIS IS
1902
00:55:50,000 –>00:55:49,999
THANK YOU, MADAM CHAIRMAN. I YIELD 2.5 MINUTES TO THE GENTLEMAN FROM TENNESSEE — TEXAS, MR. CANSECO, ANOTHER
1907
00:56:01,000 –>00:56:00,999
GREAT MEMBER OF THE FINANCIAL SERVICES COMMITTEE. THE GENTLEMAN FROM TEXAS IS RECOGNIZED FOR 2 1/2 MINUTES. THANK YOU, MADAM CHAIR. I’D LIKE TO THANK CHAIRMAN BIGGERT FOR HER LEADERSHIP ON THIS BILL WHICH MAKES VITAL REFORMS TO A TROUBLED PROGRAM. MADAM CHAIRMAN, WE ARE ALL WELL
1919
00:56:20,000 –>00:56:19,999
AWARE OF THE IMPORTANCE OF FLOOD INSURANCE. BACK IN TEXAS FLOODS ARE A COMMON OCCURRENCE. AND WHEN THEY HAPPEN, THEY DESTROY HOMES, PROPERTY, AND EVEN ENTIRE COMMUNITIES. YES, THIS PROGRAM PROVIDES FLOOD VICTIMS WITH THE MONETARY COMPENSATION NECESSARY TO BEGIN REBUILDING THEIR HOMES AND THEIR LIVES, YET WE CANNOT FORGET THAT THE ONLY REASON THIS PROGRAM IS STILL OPERATING IS BECAUSE TAXPAYERS HAVE FAILED IT OUT AS BY ANY MEASURE IT HAS BEEN INSOLVENT. THAT IS WHY I’M OFFERING A VERY SIMPLE AMENDMENT TO THIS BILL THAT ACCOMPLISHES THREE THINGS. NUMBER ONE, IT ADDS THE PROVISION TO THE BILL THAT RECOGNIZES THAT WHILE FLOOD INSURANCE IS IMPORTANT TO MILLIONS OF AMERICANS, THIS PROGRAM IS DEEPLY IN DEBT TO THE AMERICAN TAXPAYER AND THERE IS CURRENTLY NO TANGIBLE PLAN TO PAY THAT MONEY BACK. NUMBER TWO, IT REQUIRES THE ADMINISTRATOR OF FEMA TO REPORT BACK TO THE CONGRESS WITHIN SIX MONTHS A 10-YEAR PLAN TO PAY BACK THE $18 BILLION IT CURRENTLY OWES TAXPAYERS. NUMBER THREE, IT ADDS ACCOUNTABILITY TO A PROGRAM THAT IS FAR FROM BEING FISCALLY SOUND. LET’S KEEP IN MIND THAT IF THE NATIONAL FLOOD INSURANCE PROGRAM WERE AN INITIATIVE SOLELY OF THE PRIVATE SECTOR, IT WOULD HAVE DECLARED BANKRUPTCY LONG AGO. REMEMBER ALSO THAT THE PERSON PROPPING UP THIS PROGRAM, THE AMERICAN TAXPAYER, IS VERY WEARY AND TIRED FROM CONTINUALLY BEING HELD RESPONSIBLE FOR BAILING OUT GOVERNMENT’S FAILED INITIATIVES. FOR YEARS, THE TAXPAYER HAS BEEN ASKED TO PICK UP THE TAB FOR GOVERNMENT PROGRAMS NO MATTER HOW EFFECTIVE OR HOW SOLVENT THEY MAY BE. THE ARGUMENT WAS THAT WE COULD HOLD OFF WORRYING ABOUT OVERSPENDING UNTIL WE REACHED A CRISIS POINT. WELL, WITH EACH AMERICAN FAMILY NOW RESPONSIBLE FOR OVER $120,000 OF THE NATION’S DEBT AND WITH ANNUAL TRILLION-PLUS DOLLAR DEFICITS WE ARE NOW AT THAT CRISIS POINT. MADAM CHAIRMAN, MY AMENDMENT AND THIS BILL ARE A STEP TOWARDS BRINGING FISCAL RESPONSIBILITY BACK TO THIS PROGRAM, BUT MORE IMPORTANTLY, IT STANDS UP FOR THE AMERICAN TAXPAYER WHOSE VOICE HAS BEEN IGNORED IN WASHINGTON FOR TOO LONG. THE GENTLEMAN’S TIME HAS EXPIRED. FOR WHAT PURPOSE DOES THE THE
1995
00:58:50,000 –>00:58:49,999
GENTLEWOMAN FROM CALIFORNIA RISE? MADAM CHAIRWOMAN, I’M VERY PLEASED TO RECOGNIZE THE GENTLEMAN FROM GEORGIA, THREE MINUTES, MR. DAVID SCOTT HAS BEEN A STRONG ADVOCATE FOR HIS CONSTITUENTS MAKING SURE THEY COULD AFFORD IT AN INSTALLMENT PART OF THIS BILL IS BECAUSE OF HIS WORK. I YIELD THREE MINUTES. THE GENTLEMAN FROM
2008
00:59:09,000 –>00:59:08,999
GEORGIA IS RECOGNIZED FOR THREE MINUTES. THANK YOU, VERY MUCH, MISSION WATERS. LET ME COMMEND YOU AND CHAIRWOMAN BIGGERT FOR YOUR EXLEAPT WORK ON THIS EXTRAORDINARILY IMPORTANT — FOR YOUR EXCELLENT WORK ON THIS EXTRAORDINARILY IMPORTANT FEES OF LEGISLATION THAT IS VERY MUCH NEEDED AND PEOPLE ACROSS THIS COUNTRY ARE VERY GRATEFUL WE ARE FINALLY BRINGING SOME HELP HERE. MADAM SPEAKER, NOTHING IS MORE DEVASTATING TO A FAMILY, TO A COMMUNITY THAN TO LOSE ALMOST IN THE FLICK OF AN EYE, TO LOSE YOUR HOME TO A FLOOD. I MEAN TOTALLY UNDER WATER. TO LOSE BUSINESSES. THIS HAPPENED IN MY STATE IN A DEVASTATING MANNER IN 2009. IT WAS THE WORST FLOOD IN MODERN HISTORY OF THE STATE OF GEORGIA. WE LOST OVER 20,000 HOMES THROUGHOUT THE STATE, BUT NO AREA WAS MORE IMPACTED THAN MY OWN CONGRESSIONAL DISTRICT. 10 PEOPLE STATEWIDE LOST THEIR LIVES, THERE WAS A COST OF OVER $500 MILLION TO LOST BUSINESSES AND HOMES. AND ON THOSE 10 PEOPLE THAT LOST THEIR LIVES, SEVEN MANY THEM — OF THEM FROM FROM MY CONGRESSIONAL DISTRICT, AND TO EVEN MAKE THIS MORE POINTED, SEVEN OF THEM WERE FROM ONE
2047
01:00:31,000 –>01:00:30,999
. COUNTY IN MY DISTRICT. THE COUNTIES OF DOUGLAS COUNTY AND COBB COUNTY WERE DEVASTATED BY THIS FLOOD. THE COMMUNITIES OF POWDER SPRINGS AND DOUGLASVILLE AND LYTHIA SPRINGS AND COLLEGE PARK HAD TO ALL VIRTUALLY START OVER. IMAGINE YOURSELF AS A CHILD, YOUR WHOLE SCHOOL UNDERWATER. IT WAS AN EXTRAORDINARY UNFORTUNATE SITUATION. AND TO MAKE MATTERS WORSE, MADAM SPEAKER, SO MANY, MOST OF THESE INDIVIDUALS HAD NO FLOOD INSURANCE. AND THE REASON THEY DIDN’T HAVE ANY FLOOD INSURANCE WAS BECAUSE OF THE COST OF FLOOD INSURANCE AND THE REQUIREMENT THAT YOU HAD TO PAY FOR YOUR FLOOD INSURANCE IN ONE LUMP SUM. WELL, THANKS TO THIS COMMITTEE, THANKS TO THIS BILL, THANKS TO THE WORK OF MS. WATERS AND MRS. BIGGERT AND CHAIRMAN BACHUS, RANKING MEMBER FRANK, WE GALVANIZED THIS AND TO THE FEDERAL GOVERNMENT AND FEMA AND NOW THANKS TO THIS BILL AND THE AMENDMENT THAT YOU ALL WERE KIND ENOUGH TO ADOPT WHICH WAS MINE INDIVIDUALS NOW CAN PURCHASE
2081
01:01:53,000 –>01:01:52,999
INSTALLMENTS. THEIR FLOOD INSURANCE IN MONTHLY WHAT A RELIEF, WHAT A GREAT MEASURE AND THIS IS WHAT THE AMERICAN PEOPLE EXPECT OF US, TO COME UP HERE AND IMMEDIATELY
2087
01:02:07,000 –>01:02:06,999
NEED. RESPOND TO OPPRESS — A PRESSING THIS IS A GREAT DAY, IT’S A GREAT BILL, I WANT TO THANK ALL OF YOU FOR WORKING WITH US IN THIS AND, MADAM CHAIRMAN, AGAIN I WANT TO THANK MRS. BIGGERT AND MS. WATERS FOR THEIR EXCELLENT WORK FOR A JOB WELL DONE AND THE PEOPLE OF THIS COUNTRY THANK YOU, TOO.
2098
01:02:29,000 –>01:02:28,999
. SO THAT WE CAN PAY OUR INSURANCE THE GENTLEMAN’S TIME HAS EXPIRED. FOR WHAT PURPOSE DOES THE
2103
01:02:35,000 –>01:02:34,999
MADAM CHAIRMAN, GENTLEWOMAN FROM ILLINOIS RISE? MAY I INQUIRE THE CHAIR HOW MUCH

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