Last week, I was
pleased as a number of important pieces of legislation made their way
through the halls of Congress. Two pieces of legislation that I
personally introduced moved through the committee process: the Chesapeake Bay Accountability and Recovery Act
(H.R. 739) and the Permanent
Electronic Duck Stamp Act (H.R. 1206). After being approved by members of the House Natural Resources
Committee on Wednesday, each of these bills is now eligible for
consideration by the full House of Representatives.
Bay Accountability and Recovery Act would ensure increased efficiency
and accountability in Bay restoration programs, thereby increasing the
effectiveness of efforts to restore this cherished national treasure,
which is an economic and cultural backbone for our region. The
Permanent Electronic Duck Stamp Act would facilitate easier purchase of
federal duck stamps by making them permanently available online. The sale
and distribution of these stamps fund wildlife habitat conservation
around the country. I was very pleased in the show of support for these
bills in Committee, and I am hopeful that they will be considered and
passed by the full House very soon. (add links to releases for both
The House of Representatives passed the Reducing Flight
Delays Act (H.R. 1765) on Friday with a bipartisan vote of 361-41.
This bill provides the Secretary of Transportation with additional
flexibility to transfer funds within the Federal Aviation Administration�s
budget in order to reduce the need to furlough air traffic controllers.
While I was pleased to support this legislation, I believe it
illustrates only a fraction of the overall recklessness of across-the-board
spending cuts known as sequestration. While it is absolutely necessary
to reduce government spending and change the way Washington operates,
sequestration is a haphazard method that fails to protect the
necessary functions of government. That is why I have voted to replace the
sequester with more targeted, specific spending reductions to rid the
government of waste.
As sequestration continues to be
implemented, I believe it is critical that our federal agencies have the
flexibility to ensure that they are not being forced to use furloughs as a
way to cut costs. With that in mind, I joined a bipartisan group of
members of the Virginia Congressional Delegation in expressing the need for immediate action to avert
furloughs to the Defense Department�s civilian workforce. Furthermore, I
appealed to Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel requesting that service branch chiefs not be required to
Moving forward, I will
continue to pursue a responsible replacement for these illogical cuts.
The main streets of Virginia�s First District are full of ideas to get
our economy back on track, and your feedback is so important to me as
I serve you. I can be reached by telephone at (202) 225-4261, through
my website (www.wittman.house.gov), on Facebook (www.facebook.com/reprobwittman), and via Twitter (www.twitter.com/robwittman).