Congressman Bradley Byrne today celebrated news that the City of Mobile will receive a $14,465,044 grant from the federal Department of Transportation for the “One Mobile” project.
The “One Mobile” project will reconstruct Broad and Beauregard Streets. The money comes in the form of a TIGER Discretionary Grant.
Byrne said: “I am so pleased to report that the City of Mobile will be receiving a substantial grant to help support transportation needs in our area. This grant was made possible thanks to the new highway bill passed by Congress last year and our continued relationship building with the federal Department of Transportation.
“My hats off to Mayor Sandy Stimpson and other local leaders for continuing to push hard in support of this project that will make a real difference for the City of Mobile and all of Southwest Alabama.”
Congressman Byrne sent a letter of support for the “One Mobile” project to Secretary of Transportation Anthony Foxx earlier this year. Secretary Foxx also visited Mobile last year at the invitation of Congressman Byrne.Read More
I am so proud to live on the Gulf Coast. From our delicious food to the abundant natural resources, our part of the country is unlike any other.
My family has called this area home since the 1780s. My family has always enjoyed fishing, swimming, boating, and just spending time on the Gulf. It has become a way of life for my family, just like it has for so many others.
For some people, the Gulf also provides for economic well-being, whether through the commercial seafood industry or our booming tourism industry.
This is why I am always on the lookout for policies or proposals that might make life harder for families living and working on or near the Gulf. Our area faces unique challenges, and I wanted to share two specific areas where I am looking out for the Gulf Coast.
First, President Obama proposed in his annual budget to take off-shore energy revenue away from the Gulf states and instead spend it all around the country to advance his radical climate agenda.
The President’s proposal would take money from the Gulf of Mexico Energy Security Act (GOMESA) of 2006. GOMESA is the federal legislation that creates a revenue sharing agreement for off-shore energy revenue between Alabama, Texas, Louisiana, and Mississippi. Under GOMESA, each state receives 37.5% of federal oil revenue from drilling of their coasts.
This money is critical to our coastal counties because it is used for important purposes like coastal restoration and hurricane preparedness. I have even suggested using a portion of Alabama’s GOMESA money to help fund the I-10 bridge project, given that I-10 serves as a hurricane evacuation route.
GOMESA was structured to benefit Gulf states because we are the ones who provide a significant share of the infrastructure and workforce for the industry. Gulf states also have inherent environmental and economic risks posed by off-shore energy production.
The President’s proposal simply defies logic and is a slap in the face to all of us on the Gulf. So, I offered an amendment to the annual Department of Interior funding bill that would block any efforts to transfer GOMESA money away from the Gulf states. I’m pleased to report my amendment was adopted and included in the final bill.
Secondly, I also stood up against President Obama’s efforts to implement a “National Ocean Policy.”
Created through an executive order, the “National Ocean Policy” requires various bureaucracies to work together to “zone the ocean,” which would significantly affect the ways in which we utilize our ocean resources.
The “policy” would restrict ocean activities while also redirecting money away from Congressionally-directed priorities. Numerous and varied industries will suffer as a result of this ill-conceived policy, including but not limited to agriculture, energy, fisheries, mining, and marine retail enterprises.
Those who are affected most by the policy don’t have a say or any representation in the rule making process – there is no current system of oversight in place for the regional planning agencies created as an arm of the National Ocean Council.
So, again I went to bat for the Gulf Coast and offered an amendment to block any funds from being spent on the “National Ocean Policy.” My amendment passed by a vote of 237 to 189
These are just two examples of my efforts to stand up for the Gulf Coast. I will continue to do everything I can to protect our coastal communities and make life easier for families all around the Gulf Coast.Read More
Staff members from the Office of Congressman Bradley Byrne (AL-1) will hold office hours in each of the six counties that make up Alabama’s First Congressional District between July 19 and July 21.
The staff members will be on hand to help constituents with problems they may be experiencing with federal agencies including the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA), Medicare, and Social Security. Staff members can also assist constituents who need help applying for or receiving a United States passport.
Wednesday, July 20
9:30 – 10:30 am: Orange Beach City Hall
11:00– 11:30 am: Perdido Beach Town Hall
2:00 – 2:30 pm: Silverhill Town Hall
3:00 – 3:30 pm: Bay Minette City Hall
Thursday, July 21
10:30 – 11:35 am: Fairhope City Hall
1:30 – 2:30 pm: Daphne City Hall
Wednesday, July 20
11:00 – 12:00 noon: Grove Hill Town Hall
1:30 – 2:30 pm: White Smith Memorial Library in Jackson
Tuesday, July 19
9:30 – 10:30 am Atmore City Hall
11:00 – 11:30 am: Flomaton City Hall
2:00 – 2:30 pm: Brewton City Hall
2:30 – 3:00 pm: East Brewton City Hall
Tuesday, July 19
11:00 – 12:00 noon: Citronelle City Hall
1:30 – 2:30 pm: Semmes City Hall
3:30 – 4:30 pm: Dauphin Island Town Hall
Wednesday, July 20
9:30 – 10:30 am: Monroeville City Hall
Tuesday, July 19
9:30 – 10:30 am: McIntosh Town Hall
Wednesday, July 20
3:00 – 4:00 pm: Washington County Public Library in Chatom
For more information on visits to Clarke, Mobile, Monroe and Washington counties, constituents should contact Congressman Byrne’s Mobile office at 251-690-2811.
For more information on visits to Baldwin and Escambia counties, constituents should contact Congressman Byrne’s Baldwin County office at 251-989-2664.Read More
Our nation has a serious problem with illegal immigrants crossing our border each and every day.
Recently, the immigration issue made its way to Southwest Alabama when the Obama Administration announced they were considering a plan to house unaccompanied alien children (UACs) at two Navy airfields in Baldwin County. The airfields are located near Orange Beach and Silverhill.
As soon as I heard this news, I was shocked. It made absolutely no sense. These air fields are bare-bone facilities. They have very little in the way of infrastructure, including no running water or sewage. Needless to say, it would be very expensive to construct inhabitable facilities at these airfields.
While the airfields are currently not active on a daily basis, they are still used at times by our Navy aviators for training. Last time I checked, we try to keep children away from airfields, not put them right in the middle of one.
I also had serious concerns about putting children in temporary housing so close to the Gulf Coast in the middle of hurricane season. In addition to tropical weather, anyone who has spent time in Southwest Alabama knows our area also faces serious threats from tornadoes, severe thunderstorms, and flooding.
Another issue was the Zika virus. We already know the Gulf Coast is especially vulnerable to a potential outbreak of the virus given our climate and the presence of the specific breed of mosquito in our area. Why would we put these children in area with so many obvious threats?
On top of all this, I worried about the strains this large influx of migrant children would have on our local infrastructure, like our police officers. They would have been responsible for enforcing law and order at the facility, and any incidents would have only put even more strain on our already crowded juvenile court system.
Given these concerns, I immediately went to work to make sure this proposal never became a reality.
I partnered with Congressman Jeff Miller (R-FL) from the Pensacola area in sending a letter to the Obama Administration outlining our serious concerns with the proposal and the impact it could have on our local communities.
I didn’t stop there. I also introduced an amendment to the annual Department of Defense funding bill to block the Pentagon from spending any money to construct housing for migrant children at military facilities. My amendment was adopted to the bill by a vote of 223 to 198.
Our nation’s military facilities are simply not the place to house these children and making upgrades or changes to military facilities for this purpose could significantly alter their intended use. This could negatively impact our military readiness and put the children in dangerous situations.
Thankfully, on July 14th, my office learned the Baldwin County air fields will not be used to house migrant children. While I still don’t understand why they considered this outlandish idea to begin with, I was pleased to see our hard work opposing the plan pay off.
I want to be clear: this was a total team effort. My office worked with Senators Shelby and Sessions, members of the Baldwin County Commission, Baldwin County Sheriff Hoss Mack, other local elected officials and the entire Alabama Congressional delegation to defeat this proposal.
While the Baldwin County issue has been resolved, our nation still has a serious immigration issue that must be addressed. This issue will not go away until we get serious about enforcing the immigration laws already on the books and actually secure our borders.Read More
Congressman Bradley Byrne (R-AL) released the following statement upon learning that the Department of Health and Human Services will not be housing illegal migrant children in Baldwin County.
Byrne said: “Military airfields in Southwest Alabama are not the place to house illegal migrant children, and I am glad the Obama Administration finally realized that. My office, along with other Alabama leaders, have worked hard to block this outrageous proposal, and I am pleased our efforts have been successful.
“The reality is the larger problem of illegal immigration will not go away until we get serious about enforcing the immigration laws already on the books and actually secure our borders. I will continue to make those some of my top priorities here in Congress.”
Byrne has led the charge against this ill-conceived proposal. Along with Florida Congressman Jeff Miller, Byrne sent a letter to the federal government outlining his clear concerns with the proposal.
Byrne also had an amendment included in the Department of Defense Appropriations Act, which would prohibit the Department of Defense from using any money to construct or modify facilities to house unaccompanied alien children (UAC).Read More
The House of Representatives recently adopted an amendment from Congressman Bradley Byrne (R-AL) to protect important energy revenue for states on the Gulf of Mexico.
Byrne’s amendment would prohibit any efforts to redirect funds allocated under the Gulf of Mexico Security Act (GOMESA) of 2006. GOMESA is the federal legislation that creates a revenue sharing agreement between Texas, Louisiana, Mississippi, and Alabama. Under GOMESA, each state receives 37.5% of federal oil revenue from drilling of their coasts.
President Barack Obama has proposed transferring the GOMESA money away from the Gulf States and toward climate projects all across the United States, including $400 million to help Native American tribes in Alaska deal with climate change.
Byrne’s amendment, which was adopted by a unanimous voice vote, was co-sponsored by Congressmen Charles Boustany (R-LA) and Garret Graves (R-LA).
Below is a transcript of Congressman Byrne’s remarks in support of the amendment.
Byrne said: “I am pleased to introduce this amendment along with two of my colleagues, Representatives Charles Boustany and Garret Graves of Louisiana.
“My straightforward amendment would prohibit any effort to redirect funds allocated under the Gulf of Mexico Energy Security Act, also referred to as “GOMESA.
“GOMESA was passed in 2006 and created a revenue-sharing agreement for off shore oil revenue between the federal government and four states in the Gulf of Mexico – Texas, Louisiana, Mississippi, and Alabama.
“Under GOMESA, a certain percentage of the revenues generated from selected oil and gas lease sales in the Outer Continental Shelf of the Gulf of Mexico are returned to the Gulf States. This money must be used in coastal areas for important purposes like coastal restoration and hurricane preparedness.
“There is a reason the law was structured this way.
“These Gulf States not only provide a significant share of the infrastructure and workforce for the industry in the Gulf, but they also have inherent environmental and economic risks.
“Unfortunately, in his budget proposal this year, President Obama recommended that the money be taken away from the Gulf States and instead be spread around the country to implement his radical climate agenda.
“Not only does this proposal directly contradict the current federal statute, it vastly undermines the purpose of the law – to keep revenues from these lease sales in the states that supply the workforce and have the inherent risk of a potential environmental disaster.
“This is not the first time the President has made this proposal, and so far Congress has stood strong in opposition. I hope we will do so again today.
“My simple amendment will support our coastal communities on the Gulf Coast while preserving the rule of law. We should not allow the President to turn our revenue sharing agreements into a slush fund for politically-driven climate projects.
“I urge my colleagues to support this straightforward amendment, and I reserve the balance of my time.”Read More
The House of Representatives approved a bipartisan bill introduced by Congressman Bradley Byrne (R-AL) and Congresswoman Alma Adams (D-NC) that would help improve infrastructure for our nation’s Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCU).
By a unanimous voice vote, the House approved H.R. 5530, the HBCU Capital Financing Improvement Act. The bill will improve access to and oversight of an existing program that enables HBCUs to improve their campuses to better serve their students.
Congressman Byrne and Congresswoman Adams are the co-chairs of the Bipartisan HBCU Caucus.
Below is a transcript of Congressman Byrne’s statement in support of the legislation.
Byrne said: “H.R. 5530 is one of a number of bills on the floor today with a common purpose: improving our country’s higher education system—something that has been a priority of mine for a very long time.
“As a member of the Alabama State Board of Education and Chancellor of the Alabama Department of Postsecondary Education, I worked to ensure the schools in our state were preparing students to succeed. As a member of the House Education and the Workforce Committee, I have continued that focus and worked to deliver solutions that will provide all students with the quality education they deserve. And that’s why I stand here today.
“An important part of helping students succeed is making sure schools and institutions have what they need to serve them well. That’s exactly what H.R. 5530 will do.
“The bill reforms a program known as the HBCU Capital Financing Program. Congress created this program to provide Historically Black Colleges and Universities with low-cost capital they can use to make infrastructure improvements. It acts as a loan guarantee program so that these institutions can finance or refinance repairs, renovations, and construction on their campuses.
“The program also includes an advisory board that is intended to inform the Department of Education on the capital needs of HBCUs, how those needs can be met through the program, and how the program can be improved.
“H.R. 5530 will improve access to the HBCU Capital Financing Program by helping schools better understand the resources available to them. It will also strengthen oversight of the program, reinforcing the duties of its advisory board by requiring it to report annually to Congress on the program’s financial health.
“These are simple reforms that will help HBCUs better serve their students and ensure taxpayer dollars are being well spent.
“I urge my colleagues to support this bipartisan legislation, and I reserve the balance of my time.”
Click here to learn more about H.R. 5530.Read More
Is it really as bad as it seems? That is a question I get all the time. People want to know if the partisanship and gridlock in Washington is actually like what they see on television.
The short answer is no. The reality is Republicans and Democrats often work together on bipartisan legislation to address serious issues, but it just doesn’t always make the front page of the newspaper or the evening news because it isn’t “exciting” enough.
It is an election year, and I know partisan politics are what take up most of the attention. But in Washington, bipartisan work is underway to address some important issues that have the potential to make a real difference for American families.
For example, just this past week the House passed a significant overhaul of our nation’s mental health programs. My family has been personally impacted by mental illness as my grandfather was shot and killed by a mentally ill man, so this issue is personal to me.
For too long we have failed to actually treat those who suffer from mental illness. Our bill makes clear that mental illness is not a crime but rather a true health issue that should be treated as such.
Addressing the mental health crisis will also help fight these terrible mass violence events that have struck our country in recent years. Many of the people who committed the crimes suffered from mental illness. Instead of pushing new gun laws, we should be focusing on the root cause of these acts, like mental health reform.
This is an issue that unites Republicans and Democrats, and I am pleased to report our mental health bill passed by a vote of 422 to 2.
Another great example of the bipartisan work being done in Congress is a bill to strengthen career and technical education programs.
As former chancellor of Alabama’s two-year college system, I have seen firsthand the amazing work done through career and technical education. These programs help connect people with the skills they need in order to meet workforce demands.
Our reform bill gives states more flexibility to use federal resources while also ensuring that we focus on employability skills and work-based learning opportunities. Just as important, our legislation gives parents, students, and stakeholders a voice in setting performance goals and evaluating the effectiveness of the programs.
I was pleased to support the Strengthening Career and Technical Education for the 21st Century Act when it passed the Education and the Workforce Committee by a vote of 37 to 0.
The House also passed a bill last week by a vote of 407 to 6 to address the opioid prescription drug crisis. The opioid crisis has impacted families from every corner of the United States, and our legislation will help ensure people have access to treatment they desperately need.
These are just three examples of bipartisan work being done in Congress to address actual challenges facing our country. I think this good news is especially important given the tragic events that recently impacted our country.
During times of tragedy, it is easy to become angry and allow the issues to drive us further apart, but we cannot fall victim to that temptation.
Instead, the answer is love for one another and compassion even for those with whom we may not always agree. Most importantly, the key is to focus on the things that unite us.
That is exactly what happened in the People’s House this past week, and I will continue looking for opportunities to support bills that unite us, instead of drive us further apart.Read More
Congressman Bradley Byrne (R-AL) issued the following statement regarding the events of the last few days.
Byrne said: “I hope you will join me in praying for the family of the police officers killed overnight in Dallas. These individuals put their lives on the line each and every day in order to keep our communities safe.
“I also pray for the families of the African American men who were recently killed. My heart breaks for their loved ones, just as it does for the communities where these tragic events occurred.
“It is easy to grow angry after events like those we have seen in Dallas, Baton Rouge, and Minnesota, but anger will not solve the problems or bring back anyone we have lost.
“In moments like these, the answer isn’t anger or division. We must stop with the ‘us versus them’ mentality that has only fueled the fire of hatred.
“Instead, the answer is love and compassion. Love for one another and compassion even for those with whom we may not always agree. May we unite against violence, and may we take comfort in what is written in John 1:5, ‘The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it.’”Read More
Congressman Bradley Byrne (R-AL) took to the floor of the House of Representatives this morning to applaud progress on the historic peace process in Colombia.
Over the last 52 years, Colombia has been involved in an armed conflict between the government and the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Columbia (FARC), but the government and the FARC are on the verge of a peace agreement.
Byrne traveled to Colombia last year with the House Armed Services Committee to learn more about the peace process and relations between the United States and Colombia.
A transcript of Congressman Byrne’s remarks can be found below.
Byrne said: “Mr. Speaker, I rise today to applaud and encourage the ongoing peace process in Colombia.
“Over the last 52 years, Colombia has witnessed an armed conflict between the government and the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia, or FARC.
“The conflict has taken a serious toll on the country. 220,000 people have been killed and more than 6.8 million people have been forced from their homes. The fighting has been especially difficult for the rural areas of the country.
“But a new day is on the horizon for the people of Colombia. The country is on the verge of a historic peace agreement with the FARC.
“In fact, the government and the FARC signed a ceasefire agreement on June 23rd. This was seen as one of the few remaining roadblocks to a peace agreement.
“With all that is going on in the world today, it would be easy to miss the important progress taking place in Colombia. The peace process isn’t garnering the media attention that some other foreign affairs events are, but it is going to have just as significant an impact on global affairs.
“Last year, I had the opportunity to travel to Colombia with the Armed Services Committee and my colleague from Arizona, Mr. Gallego.
“It didn’t take long for me to realize that Colombia is a beautiful and fascinating country, and I was very impressed with the hospitality of the Colombian people. It also became clear during my trip that the majority of the Colombian people want things to be better in their country, and they are committed to the peace process.
“Mr. Speaker, Colombia is our closest and strongest ally in Latin America, so the peace process is very important not only to Colombia but also to the United States. Their future opportunities are also ours.
“Colombia has a growing economy with immense potential based on their abundant natural resources and a culture that values hard work. A more stable Colombia will allow the country to further expand their economy, which will be a benefit to us right here at home.
“At a time when there are so many foreign policy challenges around the globe, Colombia is a rare success story. The country was literally on the verge of becoming a failed state, but now they are a leader in the region.
“The United States maintains significant bilateral relations and has provided important diplomatic assistance to the Colombian government, but we have done so without becoming overly involved in their local affairs.
“So, Mr. Speaker, I want to emphasize my strong support for the Colombian peace process and call on every member of this House to also lend their support to that process. We need to encourage our neighbors in South America.
“I want to commend President Santos for his leadership and his commitment to a lasting peace.
“I also want to highlight the important work of Ambassador Pinzon. I appreciate his friendship and applaud his work to strengthen the partnership between the United States and Colombia.
“Ultimately, only the people of Colombia can reach the lasting peace agreement that restores justice and order to their country.
“But the United States can, and we must, stand ready to assist the Colombian government as they finalize this process and then as they move their country out of conflict and into a period of stability and lasting peace.
“I yield back.”Read More
119 Cannon HOB
Washington, DC 20515
Bradley Byrne was born and raised in Mobile, just a few miles from the site where his great-great-great grandfather, Gerald Byrne, settled in the 1780’s.
After completing his undergraduate studies at Duke University, Byrne received his law degree from the University of Alabama School of Law. He has practiced law in Mobile for more than 30 years, always active in the local community through various service and economic development organizations.
Byrne served as a member of the Alabama State Senate representing District 32 from 2003 to 2007. Byrne was elected to Congress in December 2013, to complete the term of Congressman Jo Bonner, who announced his retirement in May 2013. Congressman Byrne was elected to his first full term on November 4, 2014.
In Congress, Byrne has established himself as an effective legislator by successfully advocating for local interests while also championing a smaller, less invasive federal government. Byrne is a member of the House Committee on Armed Services, House Committee on Rules, and House Committee on Education and the Workforce.
Byrne has been married to the former Rebecca Dukes of Montgomery for over 30 years. Rebecca is the President and CEO of The Community Foundation of South Alabama, and they are the parents of four children: Patrick, Kathleen, Laura, and Colin. Bradley and Rebecca welcomed the birth of their first grandson, MacGuire Arthur Byrne, on September 4, 2014. Bradley lives in Fairhope where he and his family are members of St. James Episcopal Church.
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