Today, Congressmen Bradley Byrne (R-AL), Mike Thompson (D-CA), Derek Kilmer (D-WA), and Randy Hultgren (R-IL) introduced the Career Advancement Through New Skills Act, legislation that would incentivize employers to invest in their employees, giving them the necessary training to close the skill gap that exists between employers’ needs and employees in many industries.
The legislation introduced today would create a tax credit for 25% of the first $5,000 that an employer spends on qualified education and training expenses for an employee. These qualified education and training expenses include the cost of programs or trainings to maintain or improve the skills of workers to meet the employer’s needs.
Rep. Byrne said: “As a Congress, we should always be looking for new ways to help Americans gain the skills they need to succeed in today’s 21st Century economy. Training programs are more important than ever before in connecting Americans with high paying jobs and closing the skills gap that is plaguing many industries today. Through this bipartisan legislation, we can make a real impact by encouraging employers to take a direct and active role in job training.”
Rep. Thompson said: “The nation’s skills gap is significant. Small businesses across the country report being unable to find qualified applicants and CEOs report shortages of workers for skilled, well-paying jobs. This bill would help narrow that gap by encouraging businesses to invest in the education and training of their employees, helping workers expand their skills while earning money and advancing their career, and giving employers the skilled workforce they need to build their businesses.”
Rep. Kilmer said: “Giving seasoned employees the opportunity to learn and build new skills while on the job helps our economy grow. The federal government can and should be a partner in supporting classes and training offered by companies that can give more stability to their workers and put them in a position to earn more money.”
Rep. Hultgren said: “One the greatest challenges facing workers today is connecting the skills and knowledge they have with the jobs that actually exist. Similarly, small businesses have trouble finding qualified applicants for the jobs of the 21st century. This bill encourages these employers to put resources toward training and educating workers for the jobs that exist now. Let’s help the backbone of our economy—small businesses—create opportunity for their workers in order to grow.”Read More
Congressman Bradley Byrne (R-AL) issued the following statement in response to Airbus announcing a new partnership with Bombardier and the addition of a second Final Assembly Line in Mobile.
Byrne said: “Tonight’s announcement from Airbus is a testament to the first-class workforce in Southwest Alabama and our pro-business culture. I want to share my deep appreciation with Airbus for their continued investment in Mobile and our community. This announcement is yet another step toward our region becoming a national and global hub for aviation excellence.”Read More
A few weeks ago, I met a remarkable young boy named Micah. Micah is a five-year-old boy who seems like most any child. He is healthy, smart, and full of life. Most people are shocked when they learn that Micah was born at just 22 weeks.
When Micah was born prematurely, he was no bigger than a pack of M&Ms, but his mom said he was “alive and he was fighting and he wanted to live.” Thankfully, due to the miraculous work of doctors and answered prayers, Micah survived.
Every child deserves the chance Micah had.
Sadly, the United States is one of only seven countries in the world that allows elective abortions after 20 weeks of pregnancy. This radical policy puts us among the likes of North Korea and China.
Micah’s mother likely put it best when she said that her “heart is grieved that babies are allowed to be aborted at the same age that my own son was born and even later.” It is simply heartbreaking.
Well, I recently voted to change the law and ban abortions in the United States after 20 weeks. Thankfully, the Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act, also known as Micah’s Law, passed the House by a vote of 237 to 189. The bill now awaits action in the Senate.
This is a commonsense, pro-life bill that simply states that abortions after 20 weeks are unlawful in the United States. The bill does include very limited exceptions in cases of rape, incest, or when the health of the mother is at risk.
To be clear, I do not support abortion at any point, but there is great significance to the 20-week timeframe.
Twenty weeks is the point at which doctors and scientists agree that babies can actually feel pain. The more premature an infant is, the worse the pain because they have yet to develop pain inhibitors.
Sadly, thousands of babies right here in the United States are killed and subjected to excruciating pain due to late-term abortions. It is simply unconscionable. That is why this legislation is so critically important.
We shouldn’t stop with Micah’s Law. As a member of the House Pro-Life Caucus, I am always looking for new opportunities to stand up for the unborn.
For example, I am a staunch supporter of the Hyde Amendment, which is a provision included in annual government funding bills to ensure no taxpayer money is used to perform an abortion. I have also supported legislation to make the Hyde Amendment permanent, so it no longer must be passed each year.
I also previously voted to eliminate funding for Planned Parenthood, an organization that promotes abortions. I support redirecting the money away from Planned Parenthood and putting it toward community health centers, which are more plentiful and provide a wider range of services. These are just a few examples.
As I cast my vote in favor of the Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act a few weeks ago, Micah was on my mind. I thought about his smile and how he was full of energy. I thought about others like him who may have been given a chance at life were it not for our nation’s broken laws.
As is written in Jeremiah 1:5, “Before I formed you in the womb I knew you, before you were born I set you apart.” I promise to always stand up for God’s precious gift of life and to support pro-life policies throughout my time in Congress.Read More
Congressman Bradley Byrne (R-AL), a member of the House Armed Services Committee, will serve as a member of the House conference committee for the 2018 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA).
A conference committee of House and Senate members has been formed because the two bodies passed different versions of the Fiscal Year 18 NDAA. Byrne will serve on the conference committee as a representative from the Education and the Workforce Committee.
The NDAA is passed annually, and it sets policy and authorizes funding for the military. The bill is critically important to Alabama, given the state’s large military presence.
Byrne said: “Given the ever-increasing range of threats facing our nation, it is vital our military has the resources and tools necessary to defend our country and deter aggression around the globe. The conference committee must ensure adequate funding for the men and women who serve in our armed forces and work to grow the size and capabilities of the U.S. Navy.”
Earlier this year, Byrne helped guide an NDAA through the House that authorized funding for three Littoral Combat Ships (LCS). The LCS is built in-part by Austal USA in Mobile. The Senate version of the NDAA only authorizes construction of two LCS.
Congressman Mike Rogers (R-AL) and Byrne are the only members from Alabama on the conference committee. Click here to see the full list of House conferees.Read More
During a speech from the floor of the U.S. House of Representatives today, Congressman Bradley Byrne (R-AL) recognized the service of Alabama Representative James Buskey, who recently announced he will be retiring after 42 years in the Alabama State House.
Byrne, who served in the Alabama State Legislature with Rep. Buskey, highlighted Rep. Buskey’s contribution to the Mobile community and wished him well in retirement.
A transcript of Congressman Byrne’s speech can be found below.
Byrne said: “Mr. Speaker, I rise today to recognize Alabama State Representative James Buskey.
“Representative Buskey recently announced that he will be retiring from the Alabama House of Representatives after 42 years of representing people in Mobile, Alabama. He was first elected to the House in 1976, making him one of the longest-serving legislators in Alabama history.
“Outside of the legislature, Representative Buskey spent much of his life working in public education, including as a school administrator at E.S. Chastang Middle School in Mobile.
“While we have our share of political differences, I have always appreciated his institutional knowledge and respected his passion for our local community. I am honored to call James a friend and appreciate his decades of service to the people of Mobile.
“Mr. Speaker, I wish James and his wife, Vergie, all the best upon his retirement and in their years ahead together.”Read More
Last week, the House took a big step toward long overdue tax reform when we passed our budget for Fiscal Year 2018. The budget is important because it opens up the process by which we can bypass a Democrat filibuster and pass tax reform with 51 votes in the Senate.
If you read last week’s column, you know that the unified Republican tax plan will benefit working families by lowering tax rates, increasing the standard deduction, expanding the child tax credit, and simplifying the entire tax code. Under our plan, most Americans would be able to do their taxes on a single, small postcard.
For me, the top priority of tax reform is to make things easier for working families who deserve to keep more of their hard-earned money in their pockets instead of sending it to the federal government. That will remain my main goal throughout the process.
At the same time, tax reform also allows us to level the playing field for small businesses and promote economic growth. When the American economy is stronger, American families are stronger. Many things have changed since we last had tax reform in 1986. Unfortunately, for the most part, the way we tax businesses has not.
With this in mind, our tax reform plan strives to help small businesses, which are the backbone of the American economy. Most small business owners and job creators say that the current confusing and burdensome tax code is one of the biggest challenges they face.
Under our plan, the top tax rate applied to the business income of small and family-owned businesses conducted as sole proprietorships, partnerships, and S corporations would be 25%. This is significantly lower than the top rate these businesses pay today. Most Americans work for these Main Street businesses, and lowering the small business rate will produce a boom of economic activity and more American jobs.
Our plan also calls for a reduction in the corporate tax rate to 20%. Our current corporate tax rate is the highest in the industrialized world and has resulted in businesses shipping jobs and revenues overseas. This is why lowering the corporate rate is a key part of President Trump’s economic agenda.
As another way to help spur economic growth, our plan would allow businesses to deduct 100% of the money they spend on capital investments for at least the next five years. This will incentivize businesses to buy heavy machinery and equipment that is necessary to really jumpstart our economy.
Importantly, our plan also focuses on leveling the playing field and closing loopholes that only benefit the well-off and well-connected.
Another key piece of our plan centers around bringing jobs and businesses back to America. We want to move from the current “offshoring model” that has been a disaster for American workers toward an “American model” that encourages more companies to do business in our country.
We do this by ending the current tax code’s disincentive for companies that want to bring wealth they have earned overseas back to the United States. Foreign profits already accumulated offshore will be subject to a low, one-time tax. This will bring money flowing back into America.
By creating a more business-friendly tax code, more jobs will be created and greater opportunities will exist for the American people. Again, a stronger economy leads to a stronger America where everyone benefits.
Of course, our tax reform plan must still go through the legislative process and changes will likely occur. I also want your feedback to hear what concerns or ideas you have regarding our tax reform plan. You can find the plan online at FairAndSimple.gop.Read More
The Committee on Education and the Workforce today approved legislation from Congressman Bradley Byrne (R-AL) to clarify what constitutes a “joint employer” to provide certainty and stability for workers and job creators.
Byrne’s bill, the Save Local Business Act, was approved out of committee on a 23 to 17 vote. The bill currently has 95 co-sponsors, including bipartisan support from three Democrats.
Byrne serves as Chairman of the House Workforce Protections Subcommittee.
Byrne said: “Today our committee sent a clear message that we are standing up for American workers and job creators. The Save Local Business Act is all about eliminating uncertainty for workers and protecting small businesses throughout the United States. Over the coming weeks, I will continue working with my colleagues to build even stronger support for this commonsense, bipartisan legislation.”
Education and the Workforce Committee Chairwoman Virginia Foxx said: “This legislation empowers workers to succeed and employers to grow. Workers deserve certainty and stability, and small and local businesses need clear rules of the road to follow in order to create jobs in their communities. I want to thank Representative Byrne for his hard work in bringing the Save Local Business Act this far, and I remain committed to moving it through the legislative process.”
Earlier this week, a “who’s who of conservative policy groups” outlined their strong support for Congressman Byrne’s pro-worker legislation.
For a fact sheet, click here.
For a bill summary, click here.
For more information on the markup, click here.Read More
Congressman Bradley Byrne (R-AL) today voted in favor of H.R. 36, the Pain Capable Unborn Child Protection Act, also known as Micah’s Law. The bill passed by a vote of 237 to 189.
The pro-life legislation would restrict abortions 20 weeks or more after fertilization. The bill establishes criminal penalties for anyone who performs or attempts an abortion after the 20-week mark. 20 weeks is the point at which medical professionals have concluded that babies can feel pain and respond to physical stimuli. The bill includes exceptions to save the life of the mother, as well as in the case of incest or rape.
Byrne said: “Just last week, I met young Micah Pickering. He is now a bright, fun, and energetic young boy despite being born at just 20 weeks. Today, as I cast my vote in favor of the Pain Capable Unborn Child Protection Act, Micah and other children like him were on my heart.
“I am proud to be 100% pro-life, but I know there is great debate in our country about the issue of abortion. This bill, however, should rise above that debate. I simply cannot fathom how anyone would be opposed to legislation to prevent late-term abortions after 20 weeks, a point at which babies can feel pain.
“Every child deserves the chance that Micah had, and today’s vote is a victory for the pro-life movement and for families like Micah’s all across the United States.”
The bill is named after Micah Pickering, who was born at 22 weeks gestational age. Micah is now five years old and living a healthy life.
Click here to read H.R. 36.Read More
Congressman Bradley Byrne (R-AL), a member of the House Education and the Workforce Committee, today introduced legislation to allow for greater innovation in higher education.
Byrne’s bill, the Innovation in Accreditation Act, would amend the Higher Education Act to allow the Secretary of Education to waive requirements if accreditors can demonstrate the waiver is necessary to “enable an institution of higher education or program accredited by the agency or association to implement innovative practices.”
Byrne said: “Institutions of higher education take on many different forms and roles in order to meet the realities of today’s students. The Innovation in Accreditation Act would ensure that students and institutions are not unnecessarily punished or restricted by accreditors from using new and innovative strategies or teaching models.
“Our goal should always be to make it easier for any student to obtain a higher education, and this legislation would help do just that.”
To qualify for a waiver, the innovation must reduce administrative burdens, improve the delivery of services to students, improve learning outcomes, or otherwise benefit students. Accreditors would also be required to demonstrate that the waiver will not negatively impact academic quality or integrity.
Barbara Gellman-Danley, Chair of the Council of Regional Accrediting Commissions, announced her support for Byrne’s legislation, saying: “New legislation—the Innovation in Accreditation Act—introduced by Rep. Bradley Byrne (R-AL), addresses real barriers accreditors face in approving initiatives to benefit students and reduce institutions’ administrative burdens.
“The Byrne bill can make a significant difference in freeing accreditors—and colleges—to advance strategies that have proven effective in yielding desired outcomes that otherwise would be prohibited. The Council of Regional Accrediting Commissions applauds such efforts to better serve today’s students. “
Click here to read Congressman Byrne’s legislation.Read More
A lot has changed in our country since 1986. Ronald Reagan was President, Top Gun was a hit at the box offices, and Matlock had just premiered on television.
One thing that hasn’t changed since then? The tax code.
1986 was the last time we had meaningful tax reform in this country, and that is a shame. The current tax code does not match the realities of today’s economy or the needs of modern Americans. Thankfully, a new tax code is on the horizon.
Last week, President Trump and Republicans in Congress unveiled our framework for a new, simplified tax code. Under our framework, Americans will keep more of their hard earned money in their pockets, small businesses will be encouraged to grow, and the economy will have what it needs to finally experience real growth again.
President Trump put it best when he said that “it’s time for Congress to provide a level playing field for our workers, to bring American companies back home, to attract new companies and businesses to our country, and to put more money into the pockets of everyday hardworking people.” That is exactly what our plan would do.
First, our plan would move from the current seven tax brackets to essentially four brackets: 0%, 12%, 25%, and 35%. The 0% bracket would result from doubling the standard deduction to $24,000 for married taxpayers filing jointly or $12,000 for single filers. This change is fundamental to a fairer, simpler system.
Additionally, our plan calls for the elimination of special interest tax breaks that primarily only help the well-connected and elite. A complicated tax code full of loopholes and confusing provisions does nothing to benefit the average American family, and we must make things as simple as possible.
Importantly, our plan will maintain important tax incentives for home mortgage interest, charitable giving, retirement, and education. The plan also increases the child tax credit to make it available to more working families.
With these changes, our plan will allow for a simple “postcard” tax filing for the vast majority of Americans. It will no longer take you countless hours or require you to hire outside help to simply file your taxes.
As President Trump has said, these changes will result in a “Middle Class Miracle.” Hardworking people across American will have more money in their pockets, which they can use to benefit their family and spark greater economic growth.
Our plan also includes a provision important to family farms and small businesses. By repealing the estate tax, also known as the death tax, we will no longer punish families when someone dies, and they want to leave their business or farm operation to a loved one.
Sadly, some on the liberal left has already started spreading false and misleading information about our pro-growth tax plan. I want to ensure you that our tax plan is designed with working Americans in mind, first and foremost. In fact, a key goal of our plan is to eliminate provisions that only benefit the well-connected and well-off.
Over the coming weeks, I will continue to share more information with you about how our tax plans will spur economic growth and benefit American families. Next week, we will take a look at how our tax plan will open the United States up for greater economic competitiveness on the world stage and bring jobs back to our country.
In the meantime, I encourage you to read the tax reform framework for yourself online at FairAndSimple.gop. As you legislative process moves forward, I welcome your input and feedback.
It is time we get the job done and give Americans the tax cuts they deserve and revitalize the American economy.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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Alabama has seen the largest decline in unemployment over the course of 2017! https://t.co/tldJbDA6yT