U.S. Representative Ed Royce (R-Calif.), Chairman of the House Foreign Affairs Committee and a senior member of the House Financial Services Committee, sent a letter to Secretary of the Treasury Jack Lew and United States Trade Representative (USTR) Michael Froman urging them to move forward on a covered agreement with the European Union regarding prudential measures related to the business of insurance or reinsurance.
In the letter, Chairman Royce wrote: “The time is now for the Department of Treasury and the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative to use the statutory authority to begin formal negotiations of a covered agreement with the EU on a number of prudential issues, including reinsurance collateral requirements."
Chairman Royce also acknowledged the Federal Insurance Office's (FIO) 2015 Annual Report, released yesterday, that stated the USTR and FIO plan to notify Congress “in the coming weeks” that an agreement is in the works.
Today, the House Financial Services Committee Subcommittee on Housing and Insurance, of which Chairman Royce is a member, will convene a hearing entitled “The Impact of Domestic Regulatory Standards on the U.S. Insurance Market." Witnesses include Roy Woodall, a voting member of the Financial Stability Oversight Council (FSOC) with insurance expertise, Tom Sullivan, Senior Advisor at the Federal Reserve Board of Governors' Department of Banking Supervision and Regulation, John Huff, Director of Financial Institutions and Professional Registration at the Missouri Department of Insurance, and Michael McRaith, Director of the FIO.
A copy of the signed letter is available HERE.
The text of the letter follows:
September 29, 2015
The Honorable Jacob J. Lew
Secretary of the Treasury
United States Department of the Treasury
1500 Pennsylvania Ave NW
Washington, DC 20220
The Honorable Michael B. Froman
United States Trade Representative
Office of the U.S. Trade Representative
600 17th Street NW
Washington, DC 20508
Dear Secretary Lew and Ambassador Froman:
It has been over five years since passage of the Dodd-Frank Act, but the United States has yet to formally begin negotiations of a covered agreement with any foreign government regarding prudential measures related to the business of insurance or reinsurance. While positive conversations with the European Union (EU) have continued as part of the “EU-U.S. Insurance Dialogue Project,” a formal covered agreement is needed to secure a level-playing field for insurers and reinsurers in the U.S. and Europe. The time is now for the Department of Treasury and the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative (USTR) to use the statutory authority to begin formal negotiations of a covered agreement with the EU on a number of prudential issues, including reinsurance collateral requirements.
Before the passage of the Dodd-Frank Act, successive Administrations identified the lack of strong U.S. leadership on international insurance issues as an impediment to American firms competing in the global market. In 2008, Treasury Secretary Paulson’s report, The Blueprint for a Modernized Financial Regulatory Structure, cited the limits of the current insurance regulatory system in that it “creates increasing tensions in such a global marketplace, both in the ability of U.S.-based firms to compete abroad and in allowing greater participation of foreign firms in U.S. markets” and called for the creation of an authority “to address international regulatory issues, such as reinsurance collateral.” In 2009, Treasury Secretary Geithner’s report, Financial Regulatory Reform, A New Foundation: Rebuilding Financial Supervision and Regulation, noted “in the international context, the lack of a federal entity with responsibility and expertise for insurance has hampered our nation’s effectiveness in engaging internationally with other nations on issues related to insurance.” Based on that conclusion, the report called for the creation of federal entity that would “be empowered to work with other nations, have the authority to enter into international agreements, and increase international cooperation on insurance regulation.”
These findings by previous U.S. Treasury Secretaries encouraged Congressional efforts. In both the 110th and 111th Congresses, Rep. Paul Kanjorski (D-PA) introduced the Insurance Information Act, which ultimately resulted in the creation of the Federal Insurance Office (FIO) as enacted in Title V of the Dodd-Frank Act. In December 2009, during markup of his legislation – then renamed the Federal Insurance Office Act – Rep. Kanjorski stated: “The Federal Insurance Office will provide a unified voice on insurance matters for the United States in global deliberations. The Federal Insurance Office and the United States Trade Representative will share the authority to negotiate and enter into agreements with foreign entities.” Specifically, Rep. Kanjorski said that the FIO and USTR would be given the authority to enter into a “covered agreement” to allow for the preemption of state laws to “harmonize reinsurance standards across national borders.” The final Conference Report accompanying the Dodd-Frank Act further highlighted this position: “The Federal Insurance Office Act of 2010 expressly provides the Secretary of the Treasury, jointly with the USTR, the authority to negotiate and enter into international insurance agreements. To assure uniform, national application of prudential measures such as reinsurance collateral requirements, the Federal Insurance Office Act provides the Director with the authority to identify and narrowly preempt state insurance measures inconsistent with a defined category of international insurance agreements.” The groundwork was laid for future action.
Perhaps most importantly, in December 2013, the FIO publicly endorsed seeking a covered agreement in the area of reinsurance collateral, stating, “To afford nationally uniform treatment of reinsurers, FIO recommends that Treasury and the United States Trade Representative pursue a covered agreement for reinsurance collateral requirements based on the National Association of Insurance Commissioners [NAIC] Credit for Reinsurance Model Law and Regulation.” As a basis for its recommendation, the FIO forecast the “likelihood” of the “non-uniform application” of model reinsurance law and the “complicating effect of state-by-state inconsistency on economic matters of national interest.” This prediction was prescient: Today, only 32 U.S. jurisdictions have passed provisions whereby reinsurers who meet rigorous financial standards can become certified for reduced collateral requirements. Amongst the one-third of States who have yet to reform their laws are the large markets of Texas and Illinois. According to the leading reinsurance trade association, these gaping holes are inhibiting reinsurers with regional books of business from taking advantage of the new laws at all. The uneven application of regulation is exactly what the covered agreement powers were intended by Congress to remedy.
Therefore, it is laudable that the Federal Insurance Office has already helped start the international conversation on these issues. In 2014, as part of the EU-U.S. Insurance Project, U.S. federal and state regulators agreed with EU regulators that they should take steps towards entering into a covered agreement on reinsurance collateral. Furthermore, the parties identified group supervision and the exchange of confidential information as other areas for which a covered agreement should be explored. In April 2015, the European Council directed the European Commission to begin negotiations with the U.S. to “enable us… to recognize each other’s prudential rules and help supervisors exchange information,” while citing reinsurance as an area where an agreement “will greatly facilitate trade.” The stage is set to formalize this process, and it is time for USTR and Treasury to join together to complete this important task.
The U.S. has much to gain by moving forward with a covered agreement with the EU. Formal negotiations would give the U.S. leverage in discussions about equivalency under the European Solvency II regime that is scheduled for implementation on January 1, 2016. To date, the U.S. has been given provisional equivalence in the area of solvency assessment, but no similar designation has followed in the areas of reinsurance and group supervision. Without such action, U.S. companies with business in the EU could be forced to, among other things, hold more capital in their EU subsidiaries, putting them at a direct competitive disadvantage. Put simply, given the time pressures, only negotiation of a covered agreement can ensure an acceptable outcome for the U.S. on the Solvency II “equivalence” issue. Without it, the continued open access of U.S.-based reinsurers to markets in EU member states will no longer be assured, and U.S. insurers doing business in the EU will be exposed to the risk of additional regulatory actions by individual EU countries. A successful covered agreement, on the other hand, lays the groundwork for successive negotiations with additional key insurance jurisdictions such as Switzerland, Bermuda and Japan. Additionally, the U.S. and the EU achieving harmony in this area sets an example that strengthens our shared goal of reducing or forestalling barriers to globally active direct insurers and reinsurers which China, Brazil and other rising economies seek to impose. It is a win-win that strengthens the United States’ hand in international insurance supervision.
While Congressional approval is not needed for a covered agreement to commence or be concluded, the Financial Services Committee and the Ways and Means Committee in the House of Representatives and the Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs Committee and the Finance Committee in the Senate must be consulted before negotiations commence. Yesterday, I was pleased to read in the FIO annual report that the USTR and FIO plan to notify Congress “in the coming weeks” that an agreement is in the works. I urge you to begin this process immediately.
EDWARD R. ROYCE
House Foreign Affairs Committee
Today, U.S. Representative Ed Royce (R-Calif.) questioned C. Boyden Gray, founder of Boyden Gray and Associates, on the Dodd-Frank Act's destruction of the rule of law at a House Financial Services Committee hearing entitled “The Dodd-Frank Act at Five Years: Are We More Free?"
“When we travel overseas as the Foreign Affairs Committee, I often have conversations with foreign leaders about the importance of rule of law, and the role it plays in encouraging foreign investment, and the role it plays in political stability, and how badly these foreign nations need the rule of law. Need the credibility that comes with it,” said Rep. Royce.
“So it’s a little bit of a shock to me that on our own shores we have blatant examples of discretionary choice and political influence running afoul of the rule of law,” continued Rep. Royce. “The rule of law in the United States has been sort of a cornerstone. So you get into these areas with fluid law with the SIFI designation process as just one I’d make an example of. I appreciate several of my colleagues raising this issue this morning. I worry that the costs of what economists call the ‘cloud of political risk’ that comes into play, as Professor Zywicki references this, is one of the consequences and one of the mistakes in Dodd-Frank. It’s one of the things we didn’t get right. That effect could be permanent, it could be long lasting.”
“Mr. Gray, we’ve seen how the CFPB has strayed well outside of its legal boundaries, expanding its reach now into telecom companies, and seeking information protected by attorney-client privilege, and even indirectly trying to regulate auto dealers, and so forth. Given the agency’s design, are you surprised by any of this behavior?” asked Rep. Royce.
“I'm not surprised. Because there’s nothing to constrain [the CFPB], there’s no check or balance, there’s no operation of the separation of powers that would conduct an oversight role to rein them in. The White House can’t do anything about it. The Congress can hold hearings but they are not supposed to review the budget. That’s the statute as I recall, that Congress actually can’t review the budget. I don’t expect anyone will be arrested for doing so but the budget is not in your hands and that’s where your power comes from. The courts are required to defer to whatever the Agency wants to do under the Chevron Doctrine. That’s true even in the case of rulings say on what’s abusive. The Agency has refused to spell out what the law means by notice and comment rulemaking, which is the hallmark of American administrative law, one of the geniuses of postwar development,” replied Gray.
“It’s going to be fluid law that’s constantly evolving…constantly causing compliance costs out there. This is one of the reasons why I opposed Dodd-Frank. But there’s another aspect here and I know the Chairman is well aware of this as well. It’s the fact that the prudential regulators have the responsibility for safety and soundness and taking them out of the equation and not allowing them to weigh in on these decisions also has a long-term risk in terms of their first responsibility, which is safety and soundness. If we were smart, what we would have done was put this function underneath the prudential regulators. It might surprise some to know that every former prudential regulator that I talk to, whether Democrat or Republican, felt that this was a profound error in the legislation,” remarked Rep. Royce.
Watch Rep. Royce's questioning of the witness here or by clicking on the image below:
The United States Senate unanimously passed legislation to cap the salaries of the CEOs of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac modeled on H.R. 2243, the Equity in Government Compensation Act of 2015, as introduced by U.S. Representative Ed Royce (R-Calif.). U.S. Senator David Vitter (R-La.) and U.S. Senator Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) are coauthors of the Senate version of the bill, S. 2036, which is also named the Equity in Government Compensation Act of 2015.
"Near universal support in both the House and Senate for capping GSE CEO pay is proof positive that multi-million dollar raises at taxpayer bailed-out and backed organizations are unconscionable,”said Rep. Royce. "I applaud Senator Vitter for his quick work in getting this bill through the Senate and will work to replicate his success in the House.”
Rep. Royce introduced the Equity in Government Compensation Act of 2015 on May 8, 2015, and it passed out of the House Financial Services Committee by a 57-1 vote on July 29, 2015. The legislation was amended during the Committee markup per negotiations with Ranking Member Maxine Waters (D-Calif.). Both Rep. Royce's bill as amended and Sen. Vitter's suspend the recently announced $4 million a year compensation packages for the CEOs at Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac and limit their total compensation to the prior level of $600,000 a year each.
Earlier this year, Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA) Director Mel Watt authorized the GSEs to propose new executive compensation plans for the position of CEO that may be as high as the 25th percentile of the market, or approximately $7.26 million a year. The GSEs shortly thereafter announced that their CEOs would receive $4 million a year compensation packages, a dramatic raise from their prior annual salaries of $600,000 at a cap set by former FHFA Director Edward DeMarco.
The U.S. Department of the Treasury has stated it "does not support FHFA’s new approach to CEO compensation at Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac and urged the agency to reject any increase." White House Press Secretary Josh Earnest has also stated "I think it is entirely legitimate for the executives at those institutions to be subject to compensation limits" when asked about the White House's view on executive raises at the GSEs.
Washington, D.C. – Today, U.S. Representative Ed Royce (R-Calif.) questioned witnesses on the U.S. Department of Labor's (DOL) proposed change to the definition of a fiduciary at a joint hearing by the Capital Markets and Government Sponsored Enterprises Subcommittee and Oversight and Investigations Subcommittee entitled “Preserving Retirement Security and Investment Choices for All Americans."
Specifically, Rep. Royce referenced his previous questioning of Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) CEO Richard Ketchum, in May, when he raised “the negative effects that a 2013 rule enacted by the British government had on low-to-moderate income consumers in the UK” and asked “whether enacting a similar rule, as the DOL has now proposed, would have those impacts here in the United States.”
Rep. Royce cited a Europe Economics study which “found that during the first three months of 2014 about 310,000 British clients stopped being served by their brokers because their wealth was too small for the broker to advise profitably and an additional 60,000 investors were not accepted for the same reason.”
Ketchum concluded that “the statistics are certainly concerning… moving to an environment where only advisory accounts are the only effective way to operate in the United States is a very bad step and that with respect to middle-class investors the availability of the choice between fee-only and commissions is important.”
"Since I spoke with Mr. Ketchum, the British government embarked on an official review of the impacts of its rule, all while the DOL claims that there is little evidence that investment advice has declined in the United Kingdom," said Rep. Royce today.
"What caused the U.K. to initiate the review? Are they investigating whether the regulation has created an advice gap, cutting off lower and middle income savers from investment advice? Is that your understanding of what they are looking at there?" continued Rep. Royce.
"I would concur and just say that I know advisors who are currently working in the U.K. and many of them had to let go of all of their small accounts in their book of business simply because it wasn't allowed for them to be paid via commission. And quite frankly, the smaller accounts, the smaller retirement savers, without question it is far more cost effective for them to use a commission based model. If they don't have that choice, we will see some significant challenges in continuing to give advice to the very people in my opinion that need our advice the most," answered Juli McNeely, President of the National Association of Insurance and Financial Advisors.
"Secretary Perez has stated unequivocally that the DOL's proposed rule would not have similar impacts to that of the U.K. rule. Let me ask you if you agree with that," continued Rep. Royce
"I do not agree with that," replied McNeely.
"I would not agree with it either Congressman," answered Paul Schott Stevens, President and CEO of the Investment Company Institute.
Watch Rep. Royce's questioning of the witnesses here or by clicking on the image below:
The office of U.S. Representative Ed Royce (R-Fullerton) will host an informational Military Academy Night session for young men and women from California's 39th Congressional District interested in attending one of our nation's military academies.
Each year, Rep. Royce has the privilege of nominating local high school students of the highest caliber for admission to the United States Military Academy, United States Naval Academy, United States Air Force Academy, United States Coast Guard Academy, and United States Merchant Marine Academy. The appointment process is rigorous, highly selective, and based on a candidate's academic achievement, athletic ability, extracurricular activities, and community service.
The Military Academy Night gives both students and parents the opportunity to hear from official representatives from the academies as well as Rep. Royce's staff on how to best navigate the application process. Event details are as follows:
What: 2015 Military Academy Night
Location: Buena Park City Hall (Council Chamber)
Address: 6650 Beach Boulevard, Buena Park, CA 90621
Date: Wednesday, September 30, 2015
Time: 6:00 P.M.
This event is free to attend and open to the public. No RSVP is required.
Questions regarding the event or military academy nominations from Rep. Royce can be directed to Alexandria Walker at Alexandria.Walker@mail.house.gov or (714) 255-0101.
When the House of Representatives and the Senate return to work in Washington on Tuesday, all of the legislators representing the Inland Empire have something in common: None of them have had any bills signed into law this year.
That’s not surprising, according to Marcia Godwin, an associate professor of public administration at the University of La Verne.
“Increasingly, you have omnibus bills, so being the sponsor of a significant number of bills happens less and less,” she said. “Your influence may be more on what makes it into the final appropriations rather than in what you sponsor.”
Although California’s senators, Democrats Barbara Boxer and Dianne Feinstein, have introduced far more bills than even the busiest Inland Empire congressman, Ed Royce, their real influence is seen in what makes it into law generally, with Boxer’s influence most keenly felt over her career in environmental policy, while Feinstein’s impact has been largest in foreign affairs, Godwin said.
But the Republican control of Capitol Hill also has an impact, she said.
“The House of Representatives can be a very lonely place if you’re in the minority party,” Godwin said.
The 114th Congress began Jan. 3 and ends Jan. 3, 2017. The House of Representatives has 246 Republicans and 188 Democrats. The Senate has 54 Republicans to 44 Democrats.
“The biggest power ranking for a member of Congress is majority-versus-minority status and what committees they sit on,” according to Brad Fitch, president and CEO of the Congressional Management Foundation, a nonprofit, nonpartisan organization that works with members of Congress and their staffs to help train them to do their jobs more effectively.
That sort of divide would likely make it hard for a freshman Democrat like Pete Aguilar to get much passed no matter what, but that’s not the only thing that constituents should be looking at when judging their representatives’ effectiveness, according to Godwin.
“I would say that legislative effectiveness is probably the most important measure, but I wouldn’t neglect what’s been called ‘home style’ and their visibility and fit within their district,” she said.
Just looking at bills sponsored and passed isn’t enough information to tell a constituent whether or not their representatives are doing a good job in Congress, according to Fitch.
“There are significant other ways to get public policy implemented other than just passing bills on the floor,” he said. “It also ignores the other things that legislators do for their constituents.”
Some members of Congress work hard on what’s known as “constituent services” — serving as a very powerful elected customer service representative in Washington, helping resolve issues facing constituents. Up to 40 percent of a congressional staff can be dedicated to such services, according to Fitch.
“That’s the kind of service that Pete Aguilar, in particular, is trying to do,” Godwin said. “My sense is that he would do quite similar things even if he was in the majority because he’s really staked his reputation on being a pragmatist and wanting to be in it for the long term and that there are these tides and cycles.”
Assembling more data about members of Congress would provide more useful rankings, but that takes time, manpower and money.
“I literally created a method for measuring the effectiveness of Congress 10 years ago,” Fitch said, “that used 32 points of data,” including seniority and references in national news publications. Unfortunately, Fitch’s company was bought out and the Power Rankings stopped after 2009.
Alternatives designed for Capitol Hill professionals exist, but for the general public at the moment, Fitch has some recommendations.
“The best tools that constituents can use is their local publications, not the national publications,” which tend to only cover party leadership, he said.
“Also, follow them on social media. Members of Congress are pretty raw and lay out there what they want to say,” said Fitch, a former Capitol Hill staffer and journalist himself. “You get not just the tenor of the work they’re doing, but also their tone. ... It’s a great way to follow what they’re doing and whether it’s in tune with their own issues.”
Fitch also recommends voters check with organizations they trust and see if they have scorecards that track how legislators vote and how in tune they are with the issues they care about.
Historically, only about 4 percent of bills become law, according to the Sunlight Foundation government transparency group.
Things are likely to pick up in terms of bills getting voted on after legislators return to work on Tuesday.
“Technically, the budget is supposed to be approved by the first of October, so we’re getting closer to things getting serious,” Godwin said.
Still, members of Congress themselves have been complaining about the glacial pace of progress in Washington in recent years.
“This has been a really slow time for Congress,” Godwin said.
(Not everyone thinks Congress not passing new laws is a bad thing. In January, the National Review praised that as a “first, do no harm” style virtue.)
Rep. Pete Aguilar, D-San Bernardino, represents California’s 31st Congressional District. During the 114th Congress, he sponsored two bills as of Sept. 4, according to GovTrack.us.
“In spite of the hyperpartisanship that continues to plague Washington, I’m proud of my record of reaching across the aisle in support of legislation that helps families and businesses in the Inland Empire,” Aguilar is quoted as saying in an emailed statement on Friday, “From working with Republican Rep. Paul Cook (R-Apple Valley) to pass legislation to put veterans back to work, to introducing bipartisan legislation to cut taxes on small businesses and create jobs in San Bernardino County, my focus in Washington is on working with Democrats and Republicans to grow the economy and strengthen the middle class.”
According to Congressional Quarterly magazine, Aguilar voted the Democratic Party line 89.3 percent of the time, the least party unity of any legislator representing the Inland Empire.
Rep. Paul Cook, R-Apple Valley, represents California’s 8th Congressional District. During the 114th Congress, he has sponsored eight bills as of Sept. 4, according to GovTrack.us.
Cook’s eight bills are H.R. 496, the Alabama Hills National Scenic Area Establishment Act; H.R. 832, theVeterans Employment and Training Service Longitudinal Study Act of 2015; H.R. 1992, the American Soda Ash Competitiveness Act; H.R. 2286, the Prioritizing Urgent Claims for Veterans Act; H.R. 3025, the Wildfire Airspace Protection Act of 2015; H.R. 3026, the Tribal TANF Fairness Act of 2015; H.R. 3176, the Protecting our National Parks Act of 2015; and H.R. 3286, the HIRE Vets Act.
According to Congressional Quarterly magazine, Cook voted the Republican Party line 96.5 percent, the most of any Republican representing the Inland Empire on Capitol Hill.
Rep. Norma Torres, D-Ontario, represents California’s 35th Congressional District. According to GovTrack.us, as of Sept. 4, during the 114th Congress, she introduced three bills: H.R. 1829, the DHS Communication Enhancement Act of 2015; H.R. 2485, the Regional Infrastructure Accelerator Act of 2015; and H.R. 2601, the Job Opportunities Between our Shores Act.
She also introduced a resolution: H.Con.Res. 39, which voiced support for goals and ideals of National Public Safety Telecommunicators Week.
“In this Congress, it’s been very, very difficult, although I think we’ve been very creative in trying to go around the obstacles that we’ve faced,” Torres said Friday.
That might mean cannibalizing H.R. 2485 to get its provisions signed into law in other ways.
“A lot of my colleagues on the other side of the aisle like it but for political reasons can’t support it. So we’ve tried to insert that language in other bills and in Senate bills,” Torres said. “At the end of the day, I don’t care who gets credit for the bill. I care about the bill getting passed because that’s what’s going to help my community.”
It’s a very different experience than her six years in the Assembly and California Senate.
“My glass is always half full, but let’s face it, it’s a very challenging time in the House,” Torres said. “There’s not a lot of laws that I can pass, but there’s a lot of other assistance that I can bring to the community.”
According to Congressional Quarterly magazine, Torres voted the Democratic Party line 95.7 percent of the time.
As of Sept. 4, during the 114th Congress, Sen. Barbara Boxer, D-Calif., sponsored 33 bills and introduced two resolutions, according to GovTrack.us.
Boxer’s 33 bills included S. 430, Protecting Children from Electronic Cigarette Advertising Act of 2015; S. 511, the Genetically Engineered Food Right-to-Know Act; S. 486, the Head Start on Vaccinations Act; S. 669, the Iran Congressional Oversight Act of 2015; S. 864, the National Nursing Shortage Reform and Patient Advocacy Act; S. 1476, the Police Reporting Information, Data, and Evidence Act of 2015; and S. 1977, the Gun Violence Intervention Act of 2015.
The two resolutions Boxer introduced were S.Res. 37, supporting women’s reproductive health care decisions; and S.Res. 206, which congratulated the Golden State Warriors for winning the 2015 National Basketball Association championship.
According to Congressional Quarterly magazine, Boxer voted the Democratic Party line 97.1 percent of the time.
As of Sept. 4, during the 114th Congress, Sen. Dianne Feinstein, D-Calif., sponsored 34 bills and introduced eight resolutions, according to the GovTrack.us Congressional tracking website.
Among those 34 bills were S. 414, the California Desert Conservation and Recreation Act of 2015; S. 630, the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta National Heritage Area Establishment Act; S. 1469, the FISA Reform Act of 2015; S. 1608, the Consumer Drone Safety Act; S. 1837, the Drought Recovery and Resilience Act of 2015; and S. 1894, the California Emergency Drought Relief Act of 2015.
According to Congressional Quarterly magazine, Feinstein voted the Democratic Party line 91 percent of the time.
Inland Empire legislator report card, Sept. 4, 2015
8th: Paul Cook, R-Apple Valley: 8 bills, 0 signed into law
27th: Judy Chu, D-Pasadena: 4 bills, 1 resolution introduced, 0 signed into law
31st: Pete Aguilar, D-Rancho Cucamonga: 2 bills introduced, 0 signed into law
32nd: Grace Napolitano, D-El Monte: 3 bills introduced, 0 signed into law
35th: Norma Torres, D-Ontario: 3 bills, 1 resolution introduced, 0 signed into law
39th: Ed Royce, R-Walnut: 16 bills, 4 resolutions introduced, 0 signed into law
Barbara Boxer, D-California: 33 bills, 2 resolution introduced, 0 signed into law
Dianne Feinstein, D-California: 34 bills, 8 resolutions introduced, 0 signed into lawRead More
Today, the Council for Citizens Against Government Waste (CCAGW) recognized U.S. Representative Ed Royce (R-Fullerton), the sole Californian and one of only 17 lawmakers to earn a perfect score of 100 percent in CCAGW’s 2014 Congressional Ratings, as a “Taxpayer Super Hero” for the fifth time. Rep. Royce has earned a lifetime rating of 95 percent from the CCAGW.
The Congressional Ratings, which the CCAGW has issued every year since 1989, scores the voting records of all 535 members of Congress. The 2014 Congressional Ratings used 85 individual votes in the House of Representatives to determine which lawmakers helped protect and save the taxpayers’ money.
“The American people work hard for their money and ensuring that their tax dollars are spent prudently is one of my top priorities,” said Rep. Royce. “I look forward to continuing to eliminate government waste, redundancies, and excesses whenever possible.”
“We applaud and wholeheartedly thank Rep. Royce for his hard work on behalf of the taxpayers while serving in Congress,” said CCAGW President Tom Schatz. “His courageous votes to cut wasteful spending and make government more accountable should serve as an example to other members, encouraging them to make good on promises to protect the fiscal interests of American taxpayers.”
Citizens Against Government Waste (CAGW) is the nation’s largest nonpartisan and nonprofit organization dedicated to eliminating waste, fraud, abuse, and mismanagement in government.
Rep. Royce represents California's 39th Congressional District which encompasses parts of Orange, Los Angeles, and San Bernardino Counties.Read More
Today, U.S. Representative Ed Royce (R-Fullerton) introduced the Veterans Dignified Burial Act, H.R. 3278, legislation spurred by reports of improperly handled veterans’ remains at the Los Angeles County mortuary.
"The improper treatment of veterans after their passing is deeply troubling and the result of easily fixable loopholes in VA procedures," said Rep. Royce. "I look forward to advancing this critical bill to ensure our veterans receive the best possible treatment as they are laid to rest."
The bill calls for the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) to follow up on pending burials 30 days after a body has been identified as a veteran, which prevents the extended burial waiting times that have plagued the Los Angeles County mortuary and others throughout the country. It also requires the VA to submit an annual report to Congress on deceased veterans who were interred after the 30 day reporting period in an effort to provide lawmakers with a better understanding of the scope of this problem.
Last year, Rep. Royce and House Veterans' Affairs Committee Chairman Jeff Miller (R-FL) wrote former VA Under Secretary for Memorial Affairs Steve Muro regarding the improperly handled bodies. The letter asked for a review of the process and highlighted the roadblocks at the VA’s National Cemetery Administration (NCA) when it comes to veteran burials. Acting Under Secretary Ronald Walters responded with confirmation that he will institute a 30-day follow up period, though this is not a permanent procedure or codified rule as this legislation would make it.
Rep. Royce previously introduced the Veterans Dignified Burial Act on July 31, 2014, legislation that garnered nine bipartisan cosponsors. U.S. Senator Dean Heller (R-NV) also introduced a Senate companion version of the bill last year.
For more information, contact Saat Alety at Saat.Alety@mail.house.gov or (202) 225-4111.Read More
U.S. Representative Ed Royce (R-Calif.) released the following statement after the House Financial Services Committee voted 57-1 today to advance his legislation, the Equity in Government Compensation Act of 2015, to limit compensation packages for the Chief Executive Officers of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac:
“Multi-million dollar paydays for the CEOs of Fannie and Freddie represent a failed grasp of reality on the part of both the GSEs and their regulator,” said Rep. Royce. “At a time when American families are still struggling, members of both parties clearly find it incomprehensible that the FHFA would authorize the taxpayer-backed GSEs to hand out $4 million compensation packages to their CEOs.”
Earlier this year, Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA) Director Mel Watt authorized the GSEs to propose new executive compensation plans for the position of CEO that may be as high as the 25th percentile of the market, or approximately $7.26 million a year. This month, the GSEs announced that their CEOs would receive $4 million a year compensation packages, a dramatic raise from their current annual salaries of $600,000 at a cap set by former FHFA Director Edward DeMarco.
The U.S. Department of the Treasury recently stated it "does not support FHFA’s new approach to CEO compensation at Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac and urged the agency to reject any increase." White House Press Secretary Josh Earnest has also stated "I think it is entirely legitimate for the executives at those institutions to be subject to compensation limits" when asked about the White House's view on executive raises at the GSEs.
The Equity in Government Compensation Act of 2015, introduced by Rep. Royce on May 8, 2015, was amended during the Committee markup yesterday per negotiations with Ranking Member Maxine Waters (D-Calif.). As amended, the bill suspends the $4 million a year compensation packages for the CEOs at Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac and limits their total compensation to the prior level of $600,000 a year each.
The House Financial Services Committee voted on similar legislation, the Equity in Government Compensation Act of 2011, on November 15, 2011. The bill passed the committee on a bipartisan vote of 52-4, with now-FHFA Director and former Committee member Mel Watt voting against the legislation, and spurred former FHFA Director DeMarco to institute salary limits at the GSEs.
Webinar participants will learn how MIT App Inventor can help you design, build, and submit an Android app just in time for the April 30th STEM Competition deadline!Students entering the competition must submit their app’s source code online during the Competition Submission Period between 12 PM Eastern Standard Time on FEBRUARY 1ST, 2014, and 11:59 PM Eastern Daylight Time on APRIL 30TH, 2014, as well as provide a YouTube or VIMEO video demo explaining their app and what they learned through this competition process. Learn more about Rep. Royce's 2014 STEM Competition here or by following #2014RoyceSTEM on Facebook and Twitter. You can also download the Rep. Royce STEM Competition mobile app, available for free in the iTunes store (Android version coming soon).
On Monday, November 4th, Rep. Ed Royce, Chairman of the House Foreign Affairs Committee, will hold the Committee’s first field hearing to examine international human trafficking and to assess efforts to combat trafficking at the international, Federal, State and local levels. The hearing, entitled “Regional Perspectives in the Global Fight Against Human Trafficking,” will begin at 10:00 a.m. PT will be held in the Titan Student Union building on the campus of California State University, Fullerton.
Note: Earlier this year, Chairman Royce launched a Human Trafficking Congressional Advisory Committee (HTCAC), which is comprised of victims’ rights groups, local and federal law enforcement agencies, and community advocates. HTCAC meets on a monthly basis to address human trafficking concerns, as well as offer policy recommendations. In May, Chairman Royce convened a Committee hearing to examine local and private sector initiatives to combat international human trafficking.
Hearing: “Regional Perspectives in the Global Fight Against Human Trafficking”
California State University, Fullerton
Titan Student Union
800 N. State College Blvd.
Fullerton, CA 92834
For a campus map and parking information click HERE.
Monday, November 4, 2013
10:00 a.m. PT
The Honorable Luis CdeBaca
Office to Monitor and Combat Trafficking in Persons
U.S. Department of State
The Honorable Tony Rackauckas
Office of the Orange County District Attorney
Ms. Kay Buck
Executive Director and Chief Executive Officer
Coalition to Abolish Slavery and Trafficking
*Witnesses may be added.
***Important planning note for press covering hearing:
The hearing will be webcast at www.foreignaffairs.house.gov.
Members of the media must RSVP by Friday, November 1 at 12 p.m. to Audra McGeorge at firstname.lastname@example.org to receive credentials to cover the hearing from the press viewing area.
Following the hearing, there will be a media availability to discuss human trafficking.Read More
The event will feature Keynote speaker Rebekah Bell whose opinion piece in the Wall Street Journal on how she graduated from college debt-free offered important advice to students on avoiding crushing student loan debt. Additionally, the seminar will provide information about the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) program as well as other federal and private student loans, grants, and other financing options.
A member of Rep. Ed Royce's staff will be available for mobile office hours on Thursday, October 3rd in the Red Tailed Hawk Room in the City Clerk’s Office at Chino Hills City Hall (14000 City Center Dr.). Mobile office hours provide an opportunity for constituents to meet with Rep. Royce and his staff members for assistance with a variety of services and issues. Office hours on Thursday, October 3rd will be held from 9:00am - 4:00pm. Please call (909) 420-0010 with any questions.Read More
2185 Rayburn HOB
Washington, DC 20515
U.S. Representative Ed Royce (R) is serving his eleventh term in Congress representing Southern California’s 39th District, based in Orange, Los Angeles, and San Bernardino Counties. He and his wife, Marie, are longtime residents of Fullerton, CA.
Royce’s priorities in Congress are: addressing our national debt, protecting our homeland, eliminating pork-barrel spending, fighting crime and supporting victims of crime, strengthening education for all students, spurring job creation and strengthening Social Security and Medicare.
Royce has a strong history of public service. In 1982, he was elected to the California State Senate where he began his fight for victims’ rights. He authored the nation’s first anti-stalker law and versions of his bill have been adopted in all 50 states. He was also the legislative author and campaign co-chairman of California’s Proposition 115, the Crime Victims/Speedy Trial Initiative, approved by the voters in 1990. In Congress, Royce continues his fight for victims’ rights. He wrote and passed the Interstate Stalking Punishment and Prevention Act in 1996. This law makes it a federal crime to pursue a victim across state lines and enables law enforcement to intervene before violence occurs. Royce was active in passing AMBER Alert legislation in 2003, and legislation in 2004 to enhance rights for victims of crime. He currently is a member of the Victim’s Rights Caucus.
For the 113th Congress, Royce was selected to be Chairman of the House Foreign Affairs Committee. Royce has served on the Committee since entering Congress in 1993. Immediately prior to becoming Chairman of the Committee, Royce served as Chairman of the Subcommittee on Terrorism, Nonproliferation, and Trade and a member of the Subcommittee on Asia and the Pacific.
As a senior member of the House Financial Services Committee, Royce sits on two Subcommittees: Capital Markets and Government Sponsored Enterprises, and Insurance and Housing. Royce has served on the conference committees for some of the most significant legislation in the financial services arena. For more than a decade Royce has called for a stronger federal regulator to limit Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac’s excessive risk taking at the expense of taxpayers. In 2003, he was the first member of Congress to write legislation calling for a single regulator under the Treasury Department for the three housing government sponsored enterprises: Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac, and the twelve Federal Home Loan Banks.
Royce has consistently earned honors and awards from the National Taxpayers Union, Citizens Against Government Waste, National Federation of Independent Businesses, Watchdogs of the Treasury, Americans for Tax Reform, U.S. Chamber of Commerce, United Seniors Association, 60 Plus, American Share Holders Association, Citizens for a Sound Economy and the Small Business Survival Committee.
A California native, Royce is a graduate of California State University, Fullerton, School of Business Administration. Prior to entering public service, his professional background includes experience as a small business owner, a controller, a capital projects manager, and a corporate tax manager for a Southern California company. Royce and his wife, Marie, have been married for 28 years.
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