A year-end funding measure passed by Congress contains critical funding and a legislative save for the MOX, or mixed oxide, Fuel Fabrication Facility located at the Savannah River Site just ouside Augusta, Georgia.
Congressman Jack Kingston (GA-1), who sits on the House Appropriations Committee, helped lead the effort to secure $345 million in critical funding and protect the facility which the Obama Administration attempted to shutter earlier this year by putting it on “cold standby.”
“This MOX facility has been authorized by Congress, supported by multiple administrations, and has seen $4.7 billion in taxpayer investment,” said Kingston. “The Obama Administration’s misguided attempt to shutter it would only serve to cost taxpayers more money, complicate an international agreement, and needlessly elminiate thosands of jobs. I hope that the support we were able to build up this year will continue to keep this important project advancing toward completion.”
Construction began on the Savannah River Site in 2007 to construct the facility which would convert weapons-grade nuclear material into that which can be used to fuel reactors. The project is more than 60-percent completed and is part of an international agreement to reduce nuclear weapons stockpiles.Read More
Efforts led by Congressman Jack Kingston (GA-1) to bring the Southeast Poultry Research Laboratory (SEPRL) into the 21st century took a major step forward in the year-end appropriations bill.
"This is a huge and hard-fought step forward for the groundbreaking work being done in Athens,” said Kingston. “The Southeast Poultry Research Lab is of national and international significance and leads the world in poultry health research. The USDA, along with chicken and turkey processors all over the world, will continue to benefit from the research being done in Athens.”
The legislation funds a major $45 million upgrade to modernize the research facility with the latest in technology and infrastructure. This is a downpayment on a planned $155 million overhaul of the facility which would consolidate and modernize a campus of buildings. According to the U.S. Department of Agriculture there is not sufficient laboratory space for the scientists to work.
Kingston has championed the project for more than a decade and has been inimtiately involved in poultry-related issues. During his time as Chairman of the House Agriculture Appropriations Subcommittee, he was able to re-open the Chinese market to American poultry farmers.
Agriculture is Georgia’s largest industry and poultry is its largest segment.
“We appreciate Congressman Kingston's strong support for this project over the years,” said Georgia Poultry Federation President Mike Giles. “The modernization of the Southeast Poultry Research Laboratory is vitally important to the United State's ability to protect the health of our nation's poultry flocks along with the jobs and economic development that occur due to the poultry industry.”
Nationally, 16.5 million jobs are connected to the $71 billion industry.
“The chicken industry is so thankful that funds are available for the Southeast Poultry Research Lab in Athens, GA,” Mike Brown, President of the National Chicken Council, said. “This lab performs vital research and oversees other projects of importance to the industry. We want to especially thank Rep. Jack Kingston for his constant support for this facility. Rep. Kingston was an early and relentless proponent of all issues of import to the Chicken Council including this lab. USDA can now start on the road to upgrading and modernizing this ARS facility.
The modernization will also provide a huge boost to the University of Georgia’s Poultry Sciences Department at the College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences.
"Georgia leads the nation in poultry production and the funding contained in the Omnibus to consolidate USDA poultry health research in Athens will assure we continue to be the best at producing healthy, safe, wholesome and affordable poultry products,” the school’s Dean Scott Angle said. “Georgia poultry farmers and processors will benefit substantially from the research conducted at this facility. Poultry is critically important to the economy of Georgia having an impact of almost $40 billion annually. The USDA poultry laboratory will allow poultry producers in Georgia (and throughout the US) to continue to stimulate the nation's economy.”Read More
"The Keystone Pipeline represents a privately funded investment in American infrastructure that will create 42,100 jobs and approximately $2 billion in wages while reducing our dependence on oil from the Middle East. The House has voted eight times to clear this project only to be faced with bureaucratic delay from the Obama Administration and legislative obstruction from Senate Democrats despite widespread bipartisan support all across America.
If President Obama, Senate Democrats, and their anti-American-energy, anti-jobs special interests continue blocking this vital project, it will be a clear signal they failed to heed the clear will of the American people last Tuesday."
On September 19, 2008, the Canadian energy and infrastructure company TransCanada filed an application with the U.S. Department of State to build the Keystone XL pipeline, an expansion of the existing Keystone pipeline. The landmark Keystone XL pipeline expansion would carry up to 830,000 barrels of oil per day 875 miles from Alberta, Canada to Steele City, Nebraska. From there, the oil would go to refineries in the Midwest and Gulf Coast. The new pipeline would also transport some of the rapidly-increasing oil production from the Bakken formation in North Dakota and Montana. The project is estimated to support approximately 42,000 jobs, and would deliver enough oil to substantially reduce imports from the Middle East. Because the pipeline crosses a national border, it requires federal approval in the form of a Presidential Permit. It is still waiting for approval.
The State Department’s recently revised Environmental Impact Statement, the second version under President Obama along with several other drafts and a supplemental, has failed to identify any reason to further obstruct Keystone XL. In fact, it concludes that there are greater safety and environmental risks from not building the pipeline, as the oil would still be transported by alternatives like rail and truck. Further, Keystone XL would be required to include a number of state-of-the-art features that aim to make it safer than any existing pipeline.
Nonetheless, the president has not granted the permit, provided an adequate explanation for the delay, nor said when or even if he will make a final decision.
Keystone XL Fast Facts:
According to the Department of Energy, Keystone XL would be able to move up to 830,000 barrels of oil per day. This represents about half the amount the U.S. imports from the Middle East.
According to the State Department's Environmental Impact Statement, "During construction, proposed Project spending would support approximately 42,100 jobs (direct, indirect, and induced), and approximately $2 billion in earnings throughout the United States."
By delaying approval of the pipeline, President Obama is providing China with an opportunity to out-compete the U.S. and gain access to Canada’s rich oil supply.
Even Chris Matthews described President Obama’s rejection of Keystone XL as a “mistake.”
See more here.Read More
Congressman Jack Kingston (R/GA-1) called on President Barack Obama to abandon his plans to enact illegal executive amnesty by executive order after media reports indicated that the Obama Administration's plans could provide amnesty to as many as 5 million of those currently in this country illegally:
The global response – and more recently America’s response – to the Ebola outbreak in West Africa has been characterized by a lack of leadership and organization.
Now, with the first confirmed transmission of the virus on U.S. soil, we cannot afford to continue this slow and ineffective approach. Our response both at home and abroad needs a clear, “buck stops here” leader. We need a twenty-first century George Marshall with a twenty-first century Marshall Plan.
America’s efforts to combat Ebola have, to date, resembled the pre-9/11 approach to law enforcement: a multitude of agencies with a multitude of reporting structures and little coordination or communication.
U.S. Africa Command (Africom) is taking the lead on building logistical and transportation centers, training facilities, and treatment centers.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is providing the medical expertise the military lacks, caring for aid workers who have fallen sick, treating patients and providing support from its headquarters in Atlanta.
U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) is providing literally tons of medical supplies and emergency equipment including community protection kits, home care kits, and training.
The National Institutes of Health (NIH) and the Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority (BARDA) are working to fast track an investigational Ebola vaccine.
Customs and Border Protection (CBP) this week launched Ebola screening for passengers from West African countries in New York and will soon expand them to some of the countries busiest airports.
The alphabet soup of agencies responding to this crisis has a tangled and confusing reporting structure. Africom reports to the Department of Defense while CDC, NIH, and BARDA report to the Department of Health and Human Services. Meanwhile, USAID is under the jurisdiction of the State Department and CPB reports to Department of Homeland Security.
While America’s response has many of the right ingredients, it lacks a singular leader to outline strategy, marshal resources, and track the effectiveness of the response. Then there’s the rest of the world.
Then there’s the rest of the world. The global response, led in large part by the World Health Organization, has been abysmal. It is months behind where it should be at this point. At the heart of the outbreak – Liberia, Sierra Leone, and Guinea – are countries whose own public health systems have been broken by this virus.
Allowing this disorganized, slow, and ineffective response puts us at risk of an even larger global health crisis.
What if someone with Ebola traveled to South America or Asia instead of the United States or Europe? We could have outbreaks tearing through cities like Sao Paulo, Caracas, Karachi, or Bangkok.
Ebola is a deadly and elusive foe that must be fought as such. I call on the President to name an effective leader to implement a coherent strategy with clear metrics for victory.
2372 Rayburn HOB
Washington, DC 20515
Jack Kingston is United States Representative for the First Congressional District of Georgia. The district incorporates 17 counties in Southeast Georgia including the entirety of the state’s coastline.
After quickly being recognized as a leader on budget and spending issues, Congressman Kingston was appointed to the powerful House Appropriations Committee in his second term. Today he serves as Chairman of the Labor, Health and Human Services, Education and Related Agencies Subcommittee which oversees federal spending on worker safety, health, education, and retirement security programs.
He also serves as a senior member of the Defense Appropriations Subcommittee, a position he has used to ensure our troops are well-equipped and have access to high-quality services. Representing four major military installations, he maintains a close relationship with our troops, their commanders, and their families.
In 2013, Kingston was appointed to the State, Foreign Operations and Related Agencies Subcommittee which oversees U.S. diplomatic efforts as well as some foreign aid and international security programs.
From 2008-2012, Kingston served as the top Republican on the House Agriculture Appropriations Subcommittee. In this role he fought for farmers, eliminated duplicative programs in the Department of Agriculture, and helped strengthen programs that ensure our safe and abundant food supply.
Before his election to Congress, Kingston sold agribusiness insurance and rose to the position of Vice President at a regional insurance brokerage. He also served in the Georgia State House from 1985-1992.
Kingston is a graduate of the University of Georgia where he earned a degree in economics. It was in Athens that he met his wife, Libby. Together they make their home in Savannah where they raised four children.
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Thank you to everyone at the Brunswick-Golden Isles Chamber of Commerce for honoring me this morning at my final Grits and Issues Breakfast as
Congratulations to Luke Bryan for winning Male Vocalist of the Year at the American Country Music Countdown Awards last night! Also need to acknowledge
In case you missed it, you can catch my appearance on Morning Joe this morning at http://youtu.be/L7jE2NUAXOM
TUNE IN: I'll be on msnbc's Morning Joe talking about the latest news this morning at 7:30
I was honored this afternoon to receive the Oglethorpe Award from the Savannah Area Chamber of Commerce. It has been my privilege to represent