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E-News 9/9/11

Rodney Remembers September 11, 2001

The Week Just Past: Echoes of the Past on Jobs

Noted With Interest: “Pass This Bill!”

Time for the Senate to Do Its Job!

Irene FEMA Disaster Recovery Centers Now Open

Rodney Remembers September 11, 2001

“For the families of the over 3,000 victims of the murderous attacks of September 11, 2001, every day is painful.  This Sunday marks the tenth anniversary of the events that changed our Nation forever, as violent international extremists struck in the streets of Lower Manhattan, the fields of Pennsylvania, and at the Pentagon.

“In addition to making the collective pledge to join together to protect our communities, we should never forget that on September 11, 2001, we saw good rise in the face of evil, and heroes rise in the face of danger.  Many ran into the face of danger to help others escape it.

“When the day was over, and as we learned that 700 New Jerseyans lost their lives, we witnessed neighbors and friends consoling one another and watched as Americans from all walks of life stood united, side by side waving the Stars and Stripes, and lighting candles to honor those missing or lost.

“As America rebounded, we responded to these acts of terrorism with the skill and spirit of our military and our intelligence community. The war we continue to fight abroad began without provocation and without warning. It was not a war of our choosing but it became our priority. It was the slaughter of innocents by people with a twisted sense of religion who play by no rules.

“So many of our heroes currently fighting terrorism across the globe put their lives on hold on September 11, 2001, to join the National Guard and Reserve, serve our country, and defend our freedom. They serve side by side as we speak with the active duty military, all volunteers, all dedicated, all courageous, all Americans. We are grateful for their service and sacrifice, and that of their families, each and every day.

“May God bless those who continue to defend our freedom, and may God continue to bless America.”

The WeekJust Past: Echoes of the Past on Jobs

“The U.S. economy produced exactly ZERO new jobs last month.  That was news we did not want to hear last week.

“President Obama last night issued a political manifesto in the form of a rehashed version of his earlier ‘job creation’ plans at a cost of $447 billion, fueled by new billions in ever-higher taxes.  That was news that the American people cannot afford to hear this week.

“With over 14 million people out of work and the ‘official’ unemployment rate stuck at 9.1% and no jobs created in August, we continue to face a serious jobs crisis. When the President took office, unemployment was at 7.8 percent. Despite pledging to get the economy on track, the President’s agenda of federal regulatory overreach, a costly ‘stimulus’ package, and lack of focus on the private sector, has resulted in 1.7 million fewer jobs at a time when Americans need them the most. 

“I appreciate the President’s renewed focus on job creation.  However, as I was looking for areas of agreement, I am disappointed in the White House proposal which in many ways echoed his earlier failed short-term stimulus measures and did not offer policies to help job creators by getting the federal government out of the way.

“It seems to me that the Administration had a unique opportunity here to endorse a pro-growth agenda.  That means spurring investment through lower tax rates on businesses and individuals to promote economic growth and hiring.  It means getting government off the backs of job creators by clearing away many of the 43,000 new redundant, onerous and costly major regulations issued by the federal government at a cost of $26.5 billion last year – the highest level since 1981.  And it means bringing long-term budget deficits under control by cutting federal spending without raising tax rates;

“And we need to find new markets for American-made products. For starters, there are three pending export agreements that could create and support thousands of jobs. But after years of delay, the Obama administration still has not sent them to Congress for consideration.  These free-trade agreements with Colombia, Panama and South Korea would have a significant positive effect on our economy. They would support 250,000 jobs spanning all sectors of our economy, including manufacturing, services and agriculture, according to the administration’s own calculations.  (Every $1 billion in new exports of U.S. goods supports up to 6,000 additional jobs here at home.)

“I have to say this White House’s ‘messaging’ on trade is misleading: While the President was on his recent Midwest bus tour, talking about ‘job creation’, he was trying to obscure the fact that he has not sent these stalled these job-creating trade agreements to Congress for approval because of partisan political concerns. 

“The House is ready to act!  Let’s get on with it!  We can vote and approve these agreements next week, if only the President would let us!  But in the meantime, our trade competitors are ‘eating our lunch’ and stealing our jobs!”

                                                                    Rodney Frelinghuysen

Recommended Reading:  The United States has tumbled further down a global ranking of the world's most competitive economies, landing at fifth place due to our massive deficits, a global economic group said this week.  Read the story from Associated Press here

Noted With Interest: “Pass This Bill!”

It is important to note that while the President repeatedly urged Congress last night to “Pass this Jobs Bill,” no bill actually exists.  No legislation.  No amendment to existing law.  No package. Nothing on paper – just a White House “fact sheet” which puts the price tag of the President’s proposals at $447 billion.

Recommended Reading: The Administration is continuing a wide-ranging campaign against American industry, launching an aggressive investigation into the pay practices of home builders.  Read the Wall Street Journal article by Melanie Trotman and Robbie Whelan here

Time for the Senate to Do Its Job!

Like President Obama, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid has apparently discovered the importance of job creation.  He said this week that it’s time for “getting our economy back to work.” 

It should be noted that, as the Majority Leader, Senator Reid sets the schedule for the Senate floor.  If job creation hasn’t been a priority in the Senate this year, he has no one to blame but himself.

The House has passed 11 pro-growth bills that still await action in the Harry Reid’s Senate:

·         H.R. 872 - The Reducing Regulatory Burdens Act

·         H.R. 910 - The Energy Tax Prevention Act

·         H.J.Res. 37- Disapproval of FCC's Net Neutrality Regulations

·         H.R. 2018- The Clean Water Cooperative Federalism Act

·         H.R. 1315- Consumer Financial Protection & Soundness Improvement Act

·         H.R. 1230- Restarting American Offshore Leasing Now Act

·         H.R. 1229- Putting the Gulf of Mexico Back to Work Act

·         H.R. 1231- Reversing President Obama’s Offshore Moratorium Act

·         H.R. 2021- The Jobs and Energy Permitting Act of 2011

·         H.R. 1938- North American-Made Energy Security Act

·         H.Con.Res. 34- Budget for Fiscal Year 2012

Recommended Reading: Why are three free-trade deals languishing on Obama's desk? Reas Senator Mitch McConnell's opinion piece in the Tuesday Washington Post here

Recommended Reading: Lethal weapons "are already moving out of arsenals once controlled by Libyan dictatoy Miammar Qaddafi and the U.S. must "do more" to find and destroy the weapons before terrorists get them.  Read Bloomberg’s  story  Intelligence Chairman Urges White House Action on Libyan Weaponshere

Recommended Reading: Wednesday editorial in the Washington Post on Iran’s nuclear weapons program.  While the President appeared preoccupied with Libya, Iran pursued a goal of nuclear weapons development. Read “The undimmed danger” here

Irene FEMA Disaster Recovery Centers Now Open

In conjunction with the Federal Emergency Management Agency, the state of New Jersey is opening Disaster Recovery Centers across northern New Jersey.  The centers in each county will be able to provide information on federal and state recovery programs, housing assistance, hazard mitigation, tax matters, crisis counseling and other storm-related issues. The centers will also allow people to apply for Small Business Administration Loans and other forms of assistance.

Our nearest recovery centers are located:

·        Morris: Parsippany Police Athletic League building, 33 Baldwin Road, Parsippany;

·        Somerset: Somerset County Health and Human Services Building, 27 Warren Drive, Somerville;

·        Essex: Fairfield Community Center, 376 Hollywood Drive, Fairfield;

·        Sussex: Sussex Technical School, 105 North Church Road, Sparta.

The centers will be open will be open from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m., seven days a week.

Residents affected by Irene can register on line at www.fema.gov or to call 800-621-FEMA (800-621-3362) in order to determine their eligibility for federal assistance.

FEMA Guidance on Individual Disaster Assistance:

Here are the three basic steps to applying for disaster assistance:

Step One: Registration - Register by phone at 800-621-FEMA (3362) or TTY 800-462-7585 for those with hearing or speech impairments. Specialists are standing by at the toll-free numbers seven days a week, 7 a.m. to 10 p.m. local time, until further notice. Help in other languages is available. Or you can register online at www.DisasterAssistance.gov. You can also apply through a web-enabled mobile device or smartphone by visiting m.fema.gov and following the link to “apply online for federal assistance.”

  • If you have insurance, contact your agent before registering with FEMA.
  • When calling FEMA, you will need: your Social Security number, your current mailing address, the address of the damaged property, a brief description of the damages and any insurance information, including the policy number and the name of your agent, and a phone number where you can be reached.
  • Fill out and return your SBA low-interest disaster loan application if you receive one. Returning the application does not obligate you to accept an SBA loan, but the application must be filled out in order to be considered for other types of disaster assistance. 

Step Two: Inspections - After you register, a FEMA-contracted housing inspector will call you to set up an appointment to inspect your property. There is no charge for this service, but it is a necessary step to determine damages.

Make sure your home or mailbox number is easily visible from the road. As part of the inspection process, you must provide proof of ownership or occupancy:

  • Homeowners may show a tax bill, deed, mortgage payment receipt or insurance policy with the property's address.
  • Renters may show a lease, rent payment receipt, utility bill or other document confirming the home was their primary residence at the time of the disaster.
  • Homeowners and renters must also present a valid driver's license or other photo ID.

Step Three: Keep in Touch - Among the top five reasons applicants fail to receive federal assistance grants is FEMA's inability to contact them after they apply. This can be particularly difficult for persons in shelters or temporary housing. FEMA tries to reach applicants numerous times before a decision on an application is made. It is vital that you inform FEMA of any change in telephone number and/or mailing address. This can be done by simply calling the FEMA Helpline (see below) or by visiting the disaster assistance website.

For More Information or Questions

For any assistance along the way – such as with help filling out the applications, and general questions or progress reports – call the FEMA Helpline at 800-621-FEMA (3362), or TTY 800-462-7585, and select the language option you require.

Receiving a FEMA Grant

FEMA will issue funds if you are found eligible under the Individuals and Households Program. If you have provided banking information to FEMA, the funds will be deposited directly into your account. This option can often speed up the process of receiving assistance.

If you do receive a check, deposit it as soon as possible. You must use the money for the disaster-related assistance for which it is intended. You will receive a letter outlining how the funds are to be spent.

Businesses

Small Businesses should also register with FEMA at www.DisasterAssistance.gov and should also apply for further assistance from the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) by calling (800) 659-2955, emailing disastercustomerservice@sba.gov, or visiting http://www.sba.gov/content/new-jersey-hurricane-irene-disaster-declaration-12780-0.

**SBA provides low interest loans, not direct assistance, depending on the size of the business, amount of damage, and whether any other assistance is available.

Tax Information

Information about tax relief and extended deadlines from the IRS can be found at: http://www.irs.gov/newsroom/article/0,,id=245001,00.html.

Recommended Reading: If physician practices and care for their patients is negatively impacted now by changes in Medicare, wait until President Obama's healthcare 'reform' law takes full effect and reimbursements are cut further.  Read “Primary-Care Doctors Push for Raise,” in the Wall Street Journal here