U.S. Congressman Jody Hice | E-Newsletter
U.S. Congressman Jody Hice

Joint Address to Congress

Dear Friends,

Last week, I joined Members of Congress and millions who watched at home, online, and around the world in welcoming President Donald J. Trump for his first Joint Address to Congress. The President’s speech highlighted real concerns that many of you have expressed regarding job creation and national security. As the Administration works with Congress to roll back dozens of harmful Obama-era regulations, we remain laser focused on providing relief to hardworking Americans, kick-starting our economy, and repealing and replacing Obamacare.

I’m also pleased that the President reaffirmed his commitment to keeping our Nation safe and secure in the wake of emerging global and local threats. By rebuilding our military and supporting our local law enforcement officers, we will ensure a better, brighter, and safer future for generations to come.

One of the most moving moments of the night was the reception and round of applause for Carryn Owens, the widow of fallen Navy Special Operator William “Ryan” Owens. It was a powerful and emotional reminder of the ideals that we, as Americans, all hold dear. Carryn is a face of bravery, and that moment demonstrated how critical it is that we never forget those who paid the ultimate price in defense of our freedom and liberty. This address was the first step toward reviving our spirit as a Nation, and I was incredibly proud to be with my beautiful wife, Dee Dee, to witness this historic time in American history. 


Congressman Hice and Dee Dee in Statutary Hall before the Joint Address

Hice in the House

American taxpayers should have access to information about how the federal government handles judicial proceedings and cash settlements. Unfortunately, since 1995, the federal government has awarded millions of taxpayer dollars – without oversight and transparency – in legal settlements with inadequate reporting. Last Monday, the House passed H.R. 1033, the Open Book on Equal Access to Justice Act, to address this flaw by safeguarding American taxpayer dollars while bringing greater transparency to the government's legal practices. This bill will require the Administrative Conference of the United States to maintain an online and public database of legal fees and other expenses awarded in lawsuits that include the federal government. I proudly supported this legislation, and I applaud my colleague from Gainesville, Georgia, Congressman Doug Collins, for introducing this important measure.

Every year, agencies impose billions of dollars in new regulations on the backs of hard working taxpayers and American businesses. In an effort to tackle some of the most egregious regulations, the House passed several bills, including:

  • H.R. 998, the Searching for and Cutting Regulations that are Unnecessarily Burdensome (SCRUB) Act, which establishes a fair mechanism for pulling back layers of regulatory accumulation and gets rid of outdated, burdensome, and unnecessary regulations;
  • H.R. 1009, the OIRA Insights, Reform, and Accountability Act, which encourages agency accountability and improves the public's understanding of the Administration's rulemaking and regulation processes; and
  • H.R. 1004, the Regulatory Integrity Act of 2017, which brings greater transparency into federal agency communications during the proposed rule stage by explicitly prohibiting the agency from soliciting support in favor or against any new proposed regulatory action.

Prior to his speech before Congress, President Trump signed an executive order to restore the rule of law and review the burdensome Waters of the United States (WOTUS) rule. As many of you know, the Obama Administration issued this stifling regulation, which gave the federal government control over virtually every body of water. It is a vast expansion of federal power and only serves as a detriment to the agriculture community and private property owners, and that is why I voted to repeal it last year. I applaud President Trump’s decision to review this harmful rule, and I hope it will be repealed once and for all so that our Nation’s farmers are free from this onerous regulation.

Committee Action

Last Wednesday, the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee held a hearing to discuss much-needed reform at the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA). We discovered that the VA continues to lack corporate oversight, going as far as awarding bonuses to senior employees who fail to meet their basic performance goals. Despite the vital importance of the VA to our returning heroes, it has quickly become a hotbed of waste, fraud, and abuse in the federal government. Click here to watch me question Mrs. Pamela Mitchell, Acting Assistant Secretary of VA's Office of Human Resources and Administration, Mr. Nick Dahl, Deputy Assistant Inspector General for Audits and Evaluations, and Dr. Irene Barnett, Director of the Bedford Office for Audits and Evaluations, about the agency’s practices.

Also on Wednesday, the House Natural Resources Committee held a hearing on modernizing western water and power infrastructure in the 21st century. During the hearing, I also highlighted Georgia Power’s hydroelectric plant at Lake Sinclair and the Wallace Dam Project. It is vital that we update burdensome federal regulations and bureaucratic red tape in order to protect and facilitate water and power infrastructure. Click here to watch me question Mr. Andrew Fecko, Director of Resource Development of the Placer County Water Agency, and Mr. Robert Lynch, Attorney at Robert S. Lynch & Associates in Phoenix, Arizona.

National Read Across America Day

On Friday, I was very happy to join students at Apalachee High School and Statham Elementary School in celebration of National Read Across America Day and Dr. Seuss Day. It was a wonderful opportunity to emphasize the importance of reading to these young people and celebrate a classic American author. It was also heartwarming and inspiring to see the dedication and vibrancy of such bright, young students in the 10th District. Thank you for having me!


Congressman Hice speaking to young students at Statham Elementary School

District Connection – Congressional Art Competition

Every Spring, Congress sponsors a nationwide high school art competition to recognize and celebrate young artists from each Congressional District. This year, I’m inviting students in grades nine through twelve to participate in this “artistic discovery.” The winner will have their artwork displayed in our Nation’s Capitol for one year and will receive airfare to attend the national reception in Washington! Competition guidelines and student information can be found here. To participate, please submit artwork that is original in concept and design to one of my three district offices by Thursday, April 6th. If you or someone you know wants to participate, please don’t hesitate to contact my office. I can’t wait to see the great work that comes from our incredibly talented 10th District students!


Congressman Hice with Bianca Robinson, 2016 10th District Congressional Art Competition winner

The Week Ahead

The House will consider the following pieces of legislation:

H.R. 1362 - To name the Department of Veterans Affairs community-based outpatient clinic in Pago Pago, American Samoa, the Falesomavaega Eni Fa’aua’a Hunkin VA Clinic
H.R. 1214 - Disaster SAVE Act, as amended
H.R. 375 - To designate the Federal building and United States courthouse located at 719 Church Street in Nashville, Tennessee, as the Fred D. Thompson Federal Building and United States Courthouse
H.R. 1117 - To require the Administrator of the Federal Emergency Management Agency to submit a report regarding certain plans regarding assistance to applicants and grantees during the response to an emergency or disaster
H.R. 1174 - Fairness For Breastfeeding Mothers Act of 2017, as amended
H.R. 654 - Pacific Northwest Earthquake Preparedness Act of 2017
S. 442 - National Aeronautics and Space Administration Transition Authorization Act of 2017
H.R. 1301 - Department of Defense Appropriations Act, 2017
H.R. 132 - Arbuckle Project Maintenance Complex and District Office Conveyance Act of 2017
H.R. 648 - To authorize the Secretary of the Interior to amend the Definite Plan Report for the Seedskadee Project to enable the use of the active capacity of the Fontenelle Reservoir
H.R. 267 - Martin Luther King, Jr. National Historical Park Act of 2017, as amended
H.R. 725 - Innocent Party Protection
H.R. 985 - Fairness in Class Action Litigation and Furthering Asbestos Claim Transparency Act of 2017, Rules Committee Print
H.R. 720 - Lawsuit Abuse Reduction Act of 2017

As always, I encourage you to contact my office with any questions, comments, or concerns. Keep track of my work in Washington on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram

Sincerely, 

 
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TOP NEWS

Hice on the Radio
Congressman Jody Hice on Austin Rhodes Show -3/6

Trump sets out familiar agenda in first speech to Congress
WSBradio.com- 3/1
Asking for a “renewal of the American spirit,” President Donald Trump laid out the basics of his agenda in his first speech to Congress, calling on lawmakers to work together to improve America’s future, urging them to cooperate on an overhaul of the Obama health law, leaning on them to funnel billions more to the Pentagon, and to find ways to spur new economic growth and jobs. The reaction broke along party lines, as Republicans were thrilled with the message, while Democrats grumbled and gritted their teeth. “It was an outstanding speech, I give him an A-plus,” said Rep. Jody Hice (R-GA).


Hice ready to repeal health law
Walton Tribune – 3/3
Walton County’s congressman said he’s committed to getting rid of former President Barack Obama’s health care law. Rep. Jody Hice told a group of supporters Friday there is a “battle” going on in Washington over the fate of the Affordable Care Act, otherwise known as “Obamacare.” “We’ve got a fight that you won’t imagine going on,” Hice said when he popped in at his Monroe office late Friday morning after members of the Conservative Republican Women of Northeast Georgia stopped by to rally in support of the second-term Republican.

Courthouse donation
Columbia County News Times – 3/1
Congressman Jody Hice (GA-10), together with Congressman Rick Allen (GA-12), Columbia County Commission Chairman Ron Cross, Ten Commandments Georgia President Tom Rush, and local residents, delivered the Foundations of American Law and Government display to the Columbia County Justice Center. Governor Nathan Deal in 2012 signed a law which authorized the posting of the Foundations of American Law and Government display in all public buildings.

Hice announces art competition
Athens Banner Herald -3/6
Rep. Jody Hice, R-Ga., who represents the state’s 10th Congressional District which includes part of Athens-Clarke County, is inviting students in grades 9-12 to participate in the 2017 Congressional Art Competition. The winning artist will received round-trip tickets to attend a reception in Washington, and his or her artwork will be on display for one year in the U.S. Capitol. “Each spring when members of Congress sponsor this annual arts competition, I’m always amazed at how incredibly gifted 10th District students are,” said Hice. “Georgia has some of the most talented students in the nation, and I encourage them to take advantage of this remarkable opportunity to showcase their artwork in a national exhibit.”


Conservatives oppose Adelson’s federal gambling ban
The Hill - 3/6
For nearly two years, conservative and liberty-oriented organizations have warned congressional leaders about the danger of passing legislation known as “Restore America’s Wire Act.” The bill was written by lobbyists for Las Vegas casino owner Sheldon Adelson and is designed to overturn state laws that create competition for his brick and mortar casino empire. During a congressional hearing on the bill, Rep. Jody Hice (R-Ga.) noted that the bill would short-change half a dozen states that allow for the sale of online lottery tickets.  Then, Rep. Mick Mulvaney (R-S.C.) pointed out that by regulating online intrastate commerce, the bill would open the door legislation sought by gun control advocates to bar the sale of online ammunition.

West Point appointment evokes tears of joy
Oconee Enterprise – 3/1
North Oconee High School principal Philip Brown recalled freshman Anna Jerald sitting in his office and telling him that she wanted to go into the U.S. Army. But Jerald’s dream went back much further. Jerald knew as a young elementary school student what her career path had in store. “I’ve wanted to serve ever since I was in the second grade, and I’ve just had a natural calling to serve and help people,” Jerald said. “It’s just really developed over the years.” Now a senior, Jerald received her appointment to West Point from U.S. Congressman Jody Hice during a ceremony Friday at the high school.


GOP Lawmakers Praise Trump’s Speech, Say They’re Ready To Get To Work
The Daily Caller – 3/1
President Donald Trump’s first joint address to Congress was well received by GOP lawmakers, who said they are ready to get to work on his ambitious agenda. Rep. Jody Hice of Georgia said Trump did a great job of articulating his vision, adding he thought it embodied a sense of unity. “There were multiple highlights for me, I guess if I could wrap it up, I would say his comments on keeping America safe both through the military all the way down to supporting our law enforcement,” he said. “People want to know that they’re secure and the government’s keeping them secure and that the possibility for job creation and growth was there.”


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