Weekly Update from Rep. Denham - December 2, 2011

Dec 2, 2011

December 2, 2011

Dear Friend,

Today we learned our nation's unemployment rate dropped to a still unacceptable high of 8.6 percent. While lower unemployment rates are always welcome news, especially as we head into the holidays, we must be realistic about the situation.  More than 300,000 people have dropped out of the workforce in the past month and far too many people remain out of work.  There is still much more that we can do to create American jobs, something House Republicans have demonstrated for the past year. Just this week, we passed three more bills to create jobs, and we continue to work in bi-partisan ways towards pro-growth strategies.  Unemployment in the Valley remains well above the national average, and we need to remain focused on getting people back to work by bringing a reliable source of water to the Valley and reducing regulations on small businesses and farms.

Overregulation continues to be a major roadblock to innovation and job growth in our country. This week, the House passed H.R. 527, the Regulatory Flexibility Improvements Act, to reduce the regulatory burdens on businesses. The National Federation of Independent Businesses supported the House effort and stated, "bringing more accountability to the federal rulemaking process is a top priority for small businesses, and passing H.R. 527 is central to that effort."  As a small business owner and farmer in the Valley, I agree. I spoke on the House Floor this week about the importance of reducing these regulatory burdens and increasing certainty among our job creators, you can watch here.

Thank you to everyone who joined the teletown hall this Tuesday.  These calls are a great opportunity for me to hear your concerns and answer your questions. On this teletown hall, we conducted a poll on my bill, the Civilian Property Realignment Act (CPRA). As Chairman of the Subcommittee on Economic Development, Public Buildings and Emergency Management, I am leading a bi-partisan effort to reduce our federal footprint and save taxpayers billions.   I introduced this bill in early March and was very pleased to see the overwhelming (85 percent) support for this idea on the call. You can learn more about my bill on my website.  If you missed the call and would like to be added to our list for the next, please sign up here

Next Tuesday, the official lighting ceremony for the U.S. Capitol Christmas Tree will take place on the West Front of the Capitol. This will be a proud moment for our entire area and the state of California.  In early November, 'The People's Tree,' a 65-foot Sierra white fir, was placed on a trailer and traveled more than 4,500 miles to arrive at the U.S. Capitol this past Monday. I was lucky enough to see the tree at a few of its stops in California and sign the truck along with many other Americans as it made the trip to D.C.  The tree is decorated with 10,000 LED lights, and nearly 3,000 ornaments handcrafted by the people of California that reflect this year's theme, "California Shines."  Thank you to the thousands of volunteers in California and across the country for making this opportunity possible. 

In an effort to bring our community to the ceremony, I invited the Jazz @ 8, a choir from Summerville High School in Tuolumne County, to perform at the lighting ceremony and requested an invite from President Obama for the choir to perform at the White House during public tours on the morning of December 6th.   I am excited to let all of you know, after a joint community effort and much support, the 18-member choir will arrive in D.C. on Monday to take part in the lighting of the Christmas Tree – a tradition at the U.S. Capitol since 1964, and sing for visitors at the White House.  I will upload photos to an album on my facebook page for you all to see. 

At the ceremony, Johnny Crawford, a seven-year-old from Sonora, will turn the lights on with Speaker of the House, John Boehner.  His name was drawn from the thousands of Californians. This year's tree showcases not only the beauty of California's natural resources but the diversity of its cultures and the charity of its residents.  I take pride in knowing that this great representation of our area will be a symbol of the holidays in our Nation's Capitol this year.

I'd like to thank all of you for spreading the word about this newsletter. We have had over 3,300 people subscribe to this update.  Keep reaching out to your friends because there will be a prize for the person to refer the 3,500th person that signs up!

Also, don't forget to follow me on twitterfacebook and my website for pictures, videos and updates on my activity.  Have a great weekend! 

Sincerely, 

JEFF DENHAM