Weekly Update from Rep. Denham - September 7, 2012
After four years of trillion dollar deficits, and with our country’s national debt now exceeding $16 trillion, Americans need now more than ever for Washington to stop spending more than it receives instead of borrowing trillions of dollars from future generations. We need to come together and enact serious, common-sense reforms, because until such time, our debt will only continue to paralyze our economy and jeopardize the future prosperity of our nation. We need pro-growth tax reform; we need to return certainty to Americans and job creators alike; and, we need to strengthen and secure Medicare and other critical programs. Now is the time for accountability in Washington.
Today’s employment numbers come as no surprise to the millions of Americans still out of work. Clearly this Administration’s policies of taxing and over-regulating are not the answer to putting the American people back to work. Right now our job creators do not have the certainty they need to succeed in this weakened economy, which is why we've being working on solutions in the House that include over 30 pro-growth, pro-jobs bills passed out of the House with bipartisan support that will get our economy back to creating jobs. It is long past time for a new direction that delivers the jobs, certainty, and economic growth the American people deserve.
I’m doing everything I can to help our Valley find the employment opportunities they need, which is why I held a Job Fair in Stanislaus County last month to provide an opportunity for thousands of job seekers to meet face-to-face with local employers looking to fill over 400 positions. I was thrilled to hear from two Valley employers who have now hired ten of the job seekers they met with at our Central Valley Job Fair and are still looking to bring on three or four more new employees! This is great and encouraging news, and I want to again thank everyone for joining our community event, especially the excellent work by the Stan Alliance. I look forward to hearing about more great news like this as our friends and family in the Valley get back to work. If you or someone you know have a success story stemming from our recent Job Fair, please let me know by posting your experience on my Facebook timeline.
Throughout the duration of the 112th Congress, my Subcommittee has continued its efforts to cut government waste at the General Service Administration (GSA) and save billions of taxpayer dollars by improving the management of federally owned assets and property. On Wednesday, I called on the GSA’s newly-appointed Public Buildings Service Commissioner, Dr. Dorothy Robyn, to utilize my House-passed proposal, the Civilian Property Realignment Act (CPRA), to improve the process of disposing of excess and underutilized properties. I’m hopeful Dr. Robyn’s experience working with the Department of Defense’s Base Closure and Realignment Commission process will encourage the GSA to use a similar private-public disposal process such as CPRA to ensure the effective and efficient sale or consolidation of these properties, resulting in billions of dollars in savings for taxpayers.
Back home in California’s Central Valley, I wrapped up the final week of the August district work period this week. It’s been extremely helpful to travel throughout the district these past few weeks to participate in the many tours, events and constituent meetings to hear directly from you the concerns and issues which impact the Valley. On Wednesday morning, I met with the Oakdale Board of Realtors to discuss housing issues in our region and how federal regulations and taxation are impacting their economic stability as well as hampering prospective homeowners’ ability to secure loans. Later that day I received a warm (and unique) welcome from United Sign Systems in Modesto, who invited me to tour their company and participate in a special recognition being held for their employees. While touring their facilities, I heard from the owners of United Sign Systems, who shared with me his growing concerns regarding the impact of the President’s 2010 health care law on his business and employees. We also discussed some of the ways we can make it easier for small businesses like United Signs to grow and create jobs here in the Valley.
I was honored to be invited as a guest speaker by Modesto Junior College to participate in a question and answer forum with seniors who are currently enrolled at the Modesto Institute for Continued Learning (MICL), which is a student-run program that offers courses to seniors who wish to learn for the joy of learning. It’s truly inspiring to see so many of our seniors taking advantage of such a rewarding opportunity. There is no limit to the amount of knowledge and talents we can obtain in a lifetime – I learn new things every day – but even more inspiring is the invaluable bonds made within the MICL classrooms.
Great strides have been made this Congress to remove trade barriers and increase free trade for farmers and manufactures. I continue to meet with producers such as the Dairy Farmers of America and the Olive Oil Producers to discuss agriculture and trade policies. I also took a tour of Del Monte Foods, which is a premier producer and exporter of a variety of local agricultural products consumed around the world. It is imperative that we continue to create and sustain jobs in the agriculture supply chain in Central California so our local economy is bolstered by both direct and indirect ways.
This month begins the open application period for California’s 2013 Prudential Spirit of Community Awards program. This program is great opportunity to highlight and reward the achievements of our hardworking and dedicated young students. I encourage all of our community’s young volunteers to apply for this distinguished honor, and I look forward to honoring the Valley’s top youth volunteers of 2013. Click here to download the informational flier about the program, and you can also find out more information on my website here.
Next week I will be holding the first of two informational U.S. Military Academy Nights this month for middle school and high school students, parents and counselors in California’s 19th Congressional District interested in attending a U.S. Military Academy. The first military academy night will be held this Thursday, September 13, 2012, at Bullard High School in Fresno; a second military academy night will be held at Fred C. Beyer High School in Modesto on Wednesday, September 19, 2012. Academy representatives from the five United States Military Academies will be present to provide information and answer questions about the application and admissions process, and representatives from our district office will be available to assist with nomination applications. You can find additional details on my website here or contact Nancy Deckard at (209) 579-5458. More information and specific guidelines on service academy nominations is available on my website at http://denham.house.gov/serving-you/military-academy-nominations.
It’s been a busy week in the Valley but a rewarding one as well. Thanks to everyone for their time and for allowing me to participate in the many tours, events and constituent meetings to hear directly from you the concerns and issues which impact your business and daily lives. Listening to what you have to say, and sharing with them what I’m doing both in Washington and in the district, is an honor and a privilege. Please continue to let me know your thoughts and concerns about issues facing our community, and also feel free to forward my weekly newsletter to your friends, family and neighbors. You may also visit my website, Facebook, and Twitter, where you can find regular updates about my work at home in the Valley and in Washington.