My work in Washington is inspired and driven by the constituents I have the honor of serving. Each day our office strives to find meaningful solutions to the issues facing our district. That’s exactly why we launched Renew NY-22. It began as an in-depth tour of the district to dig deeper into the issues facing our region. What we learned from the first Renew NY-22 tour has provided us with a unique, comprehensive perspective allowing our office to better advocate for our region back in Washington.
As a result of Renew NY-22, the solutions our office has delivered range from securing critical infrastructure grants to a bill I introduced, the Expanding Oversight of Opioid Prescribing and Payment Act. And just as it did during our first year, Renew NY-22 focuses on diving deeper into the problems facing our region and bringing your concerns back to Washington.
Although there is much more work on the horizon, we’ve taken steps in the right direction to get our economy back on track, rebuild our communities and ensure that we have a well-trained, eligible workforce for open jobs.
Reinvesting In Our Infrastructure.
Due to a lack of strong and sustained investments, America’s infrastructure is lagging the rest of the developed world. In Upstate New York, too many of our roads and bridges are in dire need of repair and both Albany and Congress have shirked their responsibilities for too long. As our infrastructure ages and no new investments are made, local municipalities face a growing backlog of projects and our country risks losing its competitive advantage.
Congress is committed to sustained investment in rebuilding our crumbling infrastructure. That’s why I voted in favor of the Water Resources Development Act (WRDA) (H.R. 8) which authorizes the Army Corps of Engineers to make improvements to the nation’s water resources infrastructure as well as the FY2019 Energy and Water Appropriations bill that provides $7.28B to carry out the objectives of WRDA. It’s vital that the federal government invests in infrastructure in a fiscally responsible way that targets projects most in need of support.
Rebuilding Our Communities.
Rebuilding our Communities starts with providing funding to proven programs that help those who are truly needy. I’ve championed programs that provide targeted assistance to programs with the mission to give our vulnerable a hand up, including Community Action Agencies, Senior Centers, Legal Services Corporation, Federally Funded Health Centers, Libraries, Public Schools and many more. Additionally, I’ve been a leading voice in Congress to protect and strengthen Medicare and Social Security. As a member of the Bipartisan Heroin Task Force, I am leading the fight to provide our communities with the resources they need to combat the opioid epidemic. I'm working across the aisle to deliver solutions that help the victims, families and communities being torn apart by the growing epidemic, while fighting to stop the abuse of synthetic drugs like fentanyl.
While it remains my mission to reform wasteful Washington spending, eliminating funding for these important programs would be detrimental to our most vulnerable citizens.
Restoring Economic Opportunity/Reforming Our Tax Code.
Simplifying our tax code is key to creating jobs and a level playing field for American businesses. As a member of the House Manufacturing Caucus, I have led the effort to reignite our manufacturing base to bring jobs back to America and Upstate New York. As a small business owner, I have seen firsthand the devastation caused by the complex and unfair tax code. Soaring taxes have driven businesses and residents out of our state in record numbers.
The Tax Cuts and Jobs Act has finally begun to reverse this trend. Congress delivered on our promise to provide a fairer, simpler, pro-family tax code putting more money back in your pocket and spurring economic growth organically. In the 22nd District, the income tax has decreased by 14.3% for the average taxpayer.
Throughout the debate on tax reform, I fought to preserve the deductions that Upstate New Yorkers rely on including the Historic Tax Credit, the Medical Expense Deduction and the SALT deduction which has become an increasingly important mechanism to shield New Yorker’s from Albany’s oppressive tax burden.
Revitalizing The Agricultural Sector.
Agriculture is among upstate New York’s most important industries and has for decades been a vital part of our region’s heritage. In recent years, unfair trade agreements, rising regulatory costs, and distortions in the labor market have made it more difficult for family farms to grow and thrive in the Mohawk Valley and Southern Tier. As a member of the Bipartisan Agriculture and Rural America Task Force, I am working to protect our local farms, push back against bad trade deals and fight federal overreach. Family farming is a great tradition in our community and I’ll continue to be a leading voice to help our struggling family dairy farms in Upstate New York.
Respecting Those Who Serve.
As the mother of an active duty Marine Corps Officer, I know that those in the Armed Forces sacrifice so much in service to our nation, all with the promise that the federal government would have their backs. Our district is honored to be home to more than 55,000 veterans, and it is my top priority to ensure our nation's heroes receive access to the high-quality care they deserve. When our veterans come home, it is our duty to stand with them and honor their service and sacrifice for our country. That’s why I have personally worked with hundreds of veterans across the district to ensure they have access to the care they deserve and need.
This Administration and Congress have also put a strong emphasis on rebuilding our military. From reversing the defense sequester to giving our troops the largest pay raise in nine years, we’re committed to ensuring our men and women in uniform have the resources necessary to effectively complete their mission. Among one of the most informative experiences I’ve had in Congress was the opportunity to travel to the Middle East to see firsthand what our troops are doing on the ground and to understand the role that U.S. military personnel are playing along with our allies to maintain stability and drive out the Islamic State.
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