Jeff Miller

Jeff Miller




Congressman Jeff Miller (R-FL-01) today reminded constituents of additional office hours as part of his successful mobile office program. In order to better serve the needs of constituents who are not close to the Congressman’s Pensacola or Ft. Walton offices, special “mobile office” days have been established. Expanding on the idea first used for “veteran’s assistance days”, members of his staff will be manning the office answering questions about problems with federal agencies or issues affecting the First Congressional District.

“This is just another way we can better serve our growing population in Northwest Florida,” Miller said. “We tried the mobile office concept earlier, and we had such an outstanding turnout that we decided to expand the concept and add more dates and locations to the program.”

The dates and times of the mobile office days are listed below.

Wednesday, January 28, 2015

10:00 am - 11:30 am – Holmes County Chamber of Commerce
106 E. Byrd Avenue, Bonifay, Florida 

2:00 p.m. – 3:30 pm – Walton County Chamber of Commerce
95 Circle Drive, DeFuniak Springs, Florida

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U.S. Rep. Jeff Miller (R-FL-1) issued the following statement in response to President Obama’s State of the Union Address:

“I had hoped to hear President Obama reach out to both sides of the aisle and embrace the opportunity to work with the new Majority in Congress to improve the economy, defend our shores, and make life better for all Americans.  I had also hoped the President would have built on areas of agreement between the parties, for example the continued need to reform the VA, and demonstrate some leadership. Unfortunately, President Obama’s laundry list of agenda items focused on the failed policies of the past.

 President Obama said last year that his policies were on the ballot last November.  If that was indeed the case Mr. President, your policies lost.

 Americans have said they want a secure border, more jobs, better wages, and lower health care and education costs.  In short, they want a government that works for them.

 To truly right this economy, we need to cut government spending, we have to shrink the size of the federal government, and we have to stop the federal intrusion and overreach that hurts hardworking Americans.  We need to move towards a balanced budget, and this government needs to stop mortgaging the future of our children and grandchildren.”





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Bipartisan Veterans Suicide Prevention Act Passes House


Yesterday, the Clay Hunt Suicide Prevention for American Veterans (Clay Hunt SAV) Act passed in the U.S. House of Representatives. The bill was introduced last week by Chairman Jeff Miller and Reps. Tim Walz (D-MN) and Tammy Duckworth (D-IL) and named in honor of the late Iraq and Afghanistan veteran and veterans advocate Clay Hunt. The bill now moves to the Senate for consideration.


Following House passage of the bill, Chairman Miller and Reps. Walz and Duckworth released the following statements:


“Once again, the House took an important step to help stop the epidemic of veteran suicides. It’s time for comprehensive, new ideas to improve the accessibility and effectiveness of mental health care available to our veterans, and that’s exactly what the Clay Hunt SAV Act would provide. The bill would ensure VA’s mental health and suicide prevention efforts receive crucial independent, third party oversight while creating a greater accounting of available services and fostering an enhanced community approach to delivering veterans suicide prevention and mental health care treatment, which is why I urge my colleagues in the Senate to join me in supporting it.” – Rep. Jeff Miller, Chairman, House Committee on Veterans’ Affairs


“The Clay Hunt SAV Act represents a major step forward in the fight to end veteran suicide. I’m pleased the House took swift action in the 114th Congress to move this bill forward. I urge my colleagues in the Senate to do the same. Let’s work together to send this bipartisan bill to the President for his signature,” Rep. Walz, the highest ranking enlisted soldier to ever serve in Congress, said. “The fight, however, does not end after this bill becomes law. There is still more that must be done to improve mental health care for our veterans. I will continue working with my colleagues in Congress, veterans, and veterans’ advocates to ensure that improving care for our warriors remains a top priority.”


“Currently, there are over 2 million Post 9/11 Veterans across the country, and this number will only increase as our military force structure continues to draw down.  As the nature of war changes, the injuries our warriors sustain also change. Increasingly, theirs are invisible wounds, which do not have simple treatment and do not always manifest immediately,” Representative Duckworth said. “Just as these Veterans remained faithful to our country on the battlefield, it is our turn as their Representatives to remain faithful to them and it is our responsibility as a nation to, in the words of Abraham Lincoln, ‘care for him who shall have borne the battle, and for his widow, and his orphan.’ This responsibility includes ensuring that when our service men and women make the brave decision to seek help, they get the quality assistance and treatment they deserve in a timely manner. I am proud that this bipartisan legislation takes a crucial step in reducing Veteran suicide.”


A 2012 report from the Department of Veterans Affairs noted that an average of 18-22 veterans have committed suicide each day for more than a decade.


The Clay Hunt SAV Act seeks to quell this epidemic by:


Increasing Access to Mental Health Care and Capacity at VA to Meet Demand

  • Requires VA to create a one-stop, interactive website to serve as a centralized source of information regarding all department mental health services.
  • Addresses the shortage of mental health care professionals by authorizing VA to conduct a student loan repayment pilot program aimed at recruiting and retaining psychiatrists.


Improving the Quality of Care and Boosting Accountability at VA

  • Requires a yearly evaluation of all VA mental health care and suicide prevention practices and programs to find out what’s working and what’s not working and make recommendations to improve care.


Developing a Community Support System for Veterans 

o   Establishes a pilot program to assist veterans transitioning from active duty to veteran status.

o   Requires VA to collaborate with nonprofit mental health organizations to improve the efficiency of suicide prevention efforts.

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Miller Newsletter - 12/14/14


US Congressman Jeff Miller of Florida's 1st District
Miller Newsletter
December 14, 2014

Washington Update

House Passage of Consolidated and Further Continuing Appropriations, 2015
On December 11, the House passed H.R.83, the Consolidated and Further Continuing Appropriations Act, 2015, to provide funding for the remainder of fiscal year 2015 for 11 of the 12 annual appropriations bills and short term funding for the Department of Homeland Security. I voted against H.R.83 mainly because it does nothing to address the President’s recent executive actions pertaining to amnesty for illegal immigrants. Furthermore, it appropriates $1.01 trillion in discretionary spending, yet it does little to institute the many spending reforms necessary to get our fiscal house back in order.

With the American people rightly concerned about the President’s executive amnesty, I, along with more than 60 of my colleagues, introduced an amendment to H.R.83 that would have expressly prevented any appropriate funds, or collected fees, from being used to implement, administer, enforce, or carry out the President’s executive amnesty. I was extremely disappointed, however, that Members were not given the opportunity to vote on this amendment, and therefore was not adopted and included in the underlying measure.

While there was good to be found in the measure, including advanced funding for veterans, additional resources to address the backlog of veterans disability claims, funds to help essential readiness programs at the Department of Defense, a $350 million cut in IRS funding, continuing the trend of cutting Environmental Protection Agency funding for the fifth consecutive year, preserving important pro-life riders, and amending harmful Dodd-Frank swaps pushout requirements, H.R.83 highlights the difficulties inherent in funding our government in a fiscally responsible manner through last-minute spending measures.

There is no question that we must move back to regular order to ensure each of the 12 annual appropriations bills receives the thorough scrutiny needed to cut spending and work towards the necessary goal of balancing our budget. In the House, we have consistently passed the majority of the 12 spending bills on time, and I sincerely hope that the 114th Congress will provide a new opportunity to bring the Senate on board as we work to bring fiscal responsibility back to Washington. I also believe it is necessary for both the House and Senate to work together to carry out our role as a constitutional check on the executive branch. Without question, the President’s executive amnesty must be stopped, and we must protect the American people from big government programs, like Obamacare, which continues to harm hard-working families and businesses. Rest assured, as we start the new Congress next month, I will continue to stand strong for the conservative constitutional principles of limited government, individual liberty, and fiscal responsibility upon which our great Nation was founded.

House Oversight Hearing on Obamacare Transparency
With the price of Obamacare continuing to skyrocket, raising premiums and health care costs along with it, the House held a hearing last week to examine the numerous failures of transparency related the President’s massive takeover of our Nation’s health care system. This hearing presented a chance for two of the key figures behind the law to testify under oath to answer the concerns raised by the American people.

David Gruber, an MIT economist and one of the key architects of the law, appeared before the committee following the recent publication of comments in which he said that the keys to passing Obamacare were “the stupidity of the American voter” and a “lack of transparency.” Gruber, who according to press accounts received millions of dollars in taxpayer funds as a consultant on Obamacare, displayed a shocking level of disinterest, simply repeating time and again a half-hearted apology, refusing to comply with requests to fully disclose the compensation he received for his work on Obamacare, and demonstrating a general disregard for transparency.

Unfortunately, the obfuscation surrounding Obamacare has continued well after then-Speaker Nancy Pelosi stated that “we have to pass the bill so that you can find out what is in it.” Throughout the implementation and roll out of Obamacare, the Administration has continued to try and hide the many problems and issues with the law, with misrepresentations and false statements. In August of this year, Administrator Tavenner proudly announced that the 2014 Obamacare enrollment of 7.3 million people had exceeded the Administration’s 7 million target; however, last month new information came to light revealing that these numbers had been inflated by the Administration reportedly doubling enrollees who signed up for both health care and dental plans. The enrollee count for 2014 is now officially 6.7 million, but given the Administration’s myriad failures, the American people have significant reason to be suspicious of all figures coming from the Administration. At the hearing, Administrator Tavenner failed to adequately address the concerns raised by Members of Congress, doing little to reassure the American people, who are hurting as Obamacare raises healthcare costs across the board.

Obamacare must be repealed and replaced, and last week’s hearing simply underscored this undeniable reality.

Veterans Corner

House Passage of H.R.5059, the Clay Hunt SAV Act
The U.S. House of Representatives passed the Clay Hunt Suicide Prevention for American Veterans (Clay Hunt SAV) Act last week.  Named in honor of the late Iraq and Afghanistan veteran and veterans advocate Clay Hunt, the Clay Hunt SAV Act would help ensure VA’s mental health and suicide prevention efforts receive crucial independent, third party oversight while creating a greater accounting of available services and fostering an enhanced community approach to delivering veterans suicide prevention and mental health care treatment.

Despite record mental health staffing and budget levels at the Department of Veterans Affairs, today's veterans are falling victim to the invisible wounds of war all too often. An average of 18 to 22 veterans take their own lives each day - a heartbreaking statistic that has remained unchanged for more than a decade. In passing the Clay Hunt Suicide Prevention for American Veterans Act, the House took an important step toward putting an end to this grim status quo.  To view my December 9 remarks on the House Floor, click on the image below.

Click on the image above view my December 9 remarks during House debate on H.R.5059, the Clay Hunt SAV Act.

House Committee on Veterans’ Affairs Hearing on Evaluating Federal and Community Efforts to Eliminate Veteran Homelessness
The House Committee on Veterans’ Affairs held a hearing Thursday to examine the status and sustainability of Department of Veterans Affairs veteran homelessness prevention efforts.

In November 2009, then-VA Secretary Eric Shinseki announced a plan to end veteran homelessness within five years. Five years later that goal remains elusive, although the number of homeless veterans has fallen by about 33 percent since 2010, according to VA statistics. Despite the fact that VA operates more than 20 programs dedicated to providing assistance with housing, healthcare and/or employment for homeless or at-risk veterans and that VA’s spending on targeted homelessness prevention efforts has increased from $376 million in Fiscal Year 2009 to more than $1.6 billion in Fiscal Year 2015, the department is struggling to adequately perform basic yet vital tasks such as answering phones at its National Call Center for Homeless Veterans and referring homeless veterans in need of care to VA medical facilities and support services, according to a recent inspector general report.

To view the hearing and my opening remarks, click on the images below.

Click on the left image to view Part I (start at 27:58) of the December 11 House Committee on Veterans' Affairs Hearing and the right image to view Part II (start at 1:55).

Miller Media Clips
To read some recent press clips highlighting my work on behalf of Florida's First Congressional District and our Nation’s veterans and servicemembers, click on the links below:

VA employees doubt agency can police itself
VA Hospital Project Grinds to a Halt Amid Budget Overruns
House passes bill to improve military mental health care
U.S. House backs bill to cut vets’ suicide rate
Bipartisan Veterans Suicide Prevention Act Passes House
John Boehner Will Take Up Tim Walz's and Jeff Miller's Veteran Suicide Bill

In the District
As a strong supporter of religious liberty, I was dismayed to learn that the Town of Jay will not be displaying the traditional nativity scene in front of Jay City Hall this Christmas. According to reports, the Freedom From Religion Foundation sent a letter to the Town of Jay claiming that the nativity scene display at City Hall is prohibited by the Supreme Court. The Freedom From Religion Foundation, which is a Wisconsin based nonprofit that advocates for agnostics and atheists, claims displaying a nativity scene on government property is impermissible and furthermore an isolating gesture to non-Christians. I strongly disagree with the Freedom From Religion Foundation’s assertions, and as a man of faith and a defender of religious liberty, I believe it is vital to stand up in defense of religious freedom. Our Founding Fathers ensured that we establish no official religion in this country, nor should we; however, it was not the Founders' intent to keep God out of government or public life, but to keep the government out of the church.

Photo courtesy of

In Memory of Charles Hutton “Bull” Rigdon, Jr.
Northwest Florida lost a great man with the recent passing of Bull Rigdon. Bull was a devoted family man, a patriotic veteran and civil servant, committed civic leader, an exceptional elected official, and a great friend. Bull’s list of accomplishments and his lasting legacy of service to our Nation and to our community are true testament to his character. Bull paired a 40-plus year career as a civil servant at Eglin with more than three decades of local public service both on the Fort Walton Beach City Council and the Okaloosa Gas Board.

Those who were fortunate enough to know Bull can also attest to his generosity and selflessness, personified by the charitable work he carried out as a Shriner and a Mason, and, of course, thousands in Northwest Florida have visited the Bull Rigdon Fairgrounds in Fort Walton Beach, which was named in honor of Bull in recognition of his outstanding service as CEO of the Northwest Florida Fair.

I was personally privileged to call Bull a friend, and I know that his legacy will live on forever in Northwest Florida. Vicki and I extend our deepest prayers and condolences to his wife Helen Hunt Rigdon; children, Karen Rigdon Hughes and Charles William Rigdon; grandchildren Charles William Lamkin, Lauren Ashley Rigdon, Blake William Rigdon and Montana Dodson; sister, Ouida Rigdon Miller; stepson, Michael B. Dodson; and the entire Rigdon family.

From left: Colonel George E. "Bud" Day (Ret.); Charles Hutton "Bull" Rigdon, Jr.; Mrs.Vicki Miller; Congressman Jeff Miller; and Vice President of the United States Dick Cheney

As always, I welcome your comments. To share your thoughts on legislation, votes or issues, please visit to send an e-mail or call any of my offices.


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Congressman Jeff Miller (R-FL-01) announced today additional office hours as part of his successful mobile office program.  In order to better serve the needs of constituents who are not close to the Congressman’s Pensacola or Ft. Walton offices, special “mobile office” days have been established.  Expanding on the idea first used for “veteran’s assistance days”, members of his staff will be manning the office answering questions about problems with federal agencies or issues affecting the First Congressional District.


“This is just another way we can better serve our growing population in Northwest Florida,” Miller said.  “We tried the mobile office concept earlier, and we had such an outstanding turnout that we decided to expand the concept and add more dates and locations to the program.”


The dates and times of the mobile office days are listed below.



Friday, December 12, 2014


10:00 am - 11:30 am – Bluewater Bay Clubhouse

2000 Bluewater Bay Boulevard, Niceville, Florida


1:00 p.m. – 2:30 pm – Niceville City Hall

208 N. Partin Drive, Niceville, Florida


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Miller Veterans Day Message


There’s a very simple reason why Americans pause each November to honor the service and sacrifice of those who have worn our Nation’s uniform: our veterans have earned it. If it wasn’t for these heroes, who have fought the forces of tyranny in every corner of world and continue to do so to this day, our Nation would be a very different, unrecognizable place. The brave men and women who have stepped forth to serve America have left an indelible mark on history, securing our Nation’s independence, protecting millions around the globe from the forces of tyranny and defeating our enemies wherever they may lurk. The courage, heroism and ingenuity of our veterans provide more than just strength for our military, they provide strength and motivation for our entire country. That’s why veterans deserve our utmost gratitude and support today and every day of the year. Read More



Congressman Jeff Miller (R-FL-01) announced today additional office hours as part of his successful mobile office program.  In order to better serve the needs of constituents who are not close to the Congressman’s Pensacola or Ft. Walton offices, special “mobile office” days have been established.  Members of Congressman Miller’s staff will be manning the office answering questions about problems with federal agencies or issues affecting the First Congressional District.

 “This is just another way we can better serve our growing population in Northwest Florida,” Miller said.  “We have had such a positive response from constituents that we decided to expand the concept and add more dates and locations to the program.”

 The dates and times of the mobile office days are listed below.


Wednesday, October 22, 2014


9:30 am - 11:00 am – Navarre Beach Area Chamber of Commerce
    8543 Navarre Parkway, Navarre, Florida


1:30 p.m. – 3:00 pm – Santa Rosa County Chamber of Commerce
     5247 Stewart Street, Milton, Florida





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Miller Message 9-29-14


US Congressman Jeff Miller of Florida's 1st District
Miller Newsletter
September 28, 2014

In the News

Airstrikes Commence on ISIL Targets in Syria
This week the U.S., along with coalition forces including some Arab nation allies, commenced airstrikes on ISIL targets in Syria. The primary targets were mobile oil refineries operated by ISIL—which have produced an estimated $2 million per day for the terrorist organization—and ISIL fighting positions and command and control units. The President announced that the strikes were also successful in targeting the so-called Khorasan group, a lesser-known but dangerous faction consisting of veteran al Qaeda operatives whose focus is attacks on the West. While I question the assistance of the 40 countries President Obama has stated as having joined the coalition against ISIL, I am encouraged by the five Arab nations which have thus far assisted in the efforts to stem ISIL’s influence in the region. My thoughts and prayers go out to the brave men and women in uniform who are currently in harm’s way, as they seek to push back the momentum gained by ISIL in recent months.

U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder Resigns
Last Thursday, Attorney General Eric Holder, Jr., the 82nd Attorney General of the United States, announced his resignation. While not uncommon for a cabinet secretary to resign before carrying out duties to the end of a president’s term, Attorney General Holder is one of the longest-serving members of President Obama’s Cabinet.

President George Washington wrote in a letter to the United States’ first Attorney General, Edmund Randolph, in 1789 stating, “The due administration of justice is the firmest pillar of good Government.” Though Attorney General Holder would like to remembered most for his efforts on advancing the civil rights movement, he will undoubtedly be remembered by many for his actions and those of the Department that have undermined the U.S. Constitution throughout his nearly six years as our Nation’s top law enforcer. This disregard for the Constitution, especially from our Nation’s top law enforcement official, is inexcusable and led to him becoming the first U.S. Attorney General and Presidential cabinet member in history to be held in both criminal and civil contempt of Congress. While a successor has yet to be named, the 83rd Attorney General of the United States will take on the task of restoring the confidence between the American people and our Nation’s Department of Justice.

Miller Media Clips
To read some recent press clips highlighting my work on behalf of Florida's First
Congressional District and our Nation’s veterans and servicemembers, click on the links below:

Accountability at VA Apparently Means Firing Someone Who Has Already Retired
The Small Detail the VA Left Out After Announcing It Might Finally Fire Someone
VA Told Congress It’s Firing Official Who Already Announced His Retirement
Retaliation claims rise sharply at VA
Ex-Augusta VA director paid $76k, retired after death investigation launched
Former Augusta VA director paid $76,000 to retire after death investigation launched
A Vet's Appeal for His TBI Claim Goes Unanswered
Veterans Beat: New VA Secretary Robert A. McDonald promises change
Doctor Says Report on Phoenix VA Hospital is a Whitewash
Veterans Affairs office in Roanoke reduces wait times for benefits
VA boss declines requests to retain Gulf War panelists
Lawmaker Wants VA Investigations Expanded to DC

Washington Update

Government Accountability Office’s New Report on Abortion Coverage in Obamacare
As a staunch pro-life supporter, I was outraged to see the recent report by the Government Accountability Office (GAO) finding that the Administration has failed to prevent taxpayer funds from being used to pay for abortions in insurance plans offered on Obamacare exchanges. Since 1976, the Hyde Amendment has barred taxpayer dollars from being used to fund abortions, with limited exceptions only for cases of rape, incest, or where the life of the mother is endangered. I, and millions of Americans, find it unconscionable for the government to spend taxpayer money on abortions. President Obama understood how important respecting this issue was, directly promising the American people, in front of a Joint Session of Congress convened to discuss his health care proposal, “Under our plan, no federal dollars will be used to fund abortions, and federal conscience laws will remain in place.”

In fact, statutory language was included in Obamacare to require a separate payment for abortion coverage, so that taxpayer funds would not be used to subsidize abortions, and Executive Order No. 13535 was issued to "establish an adequate enforcement mechanism to ensure that federal funds are not used for abortion services (except in cases of rape or incest, or when the life of the woman would be endangered)." Yet, GAO found that abortions are being paid for with taxpayer funds by more than 1,000 exchange plans across the country. And this only covers the 18 insurers that GAO studied, all but one of which were not billing separately for abortion coverage.

The Administration needs to fix this immediately, and the Senate should take up the House-passed bill, H.R.7, theNo Taxpayer Funding for Abortion Act and Abortion Insurance Full Disclosure Act, which would further the Hyde Amendment by prohibiting taxpayer funds from being used to fund any abortion whatsoever, prohibiting taxpayer funds from being used for any health benefits coverage that includes coverage of abortion, and prohibiting any health plan that includes coverage of abortion from being eligible for Obamacare subsidies. This GAO report is an appalling revelation that yet another of the President’s Obamacare promises is being broken, and the American people can have little confidence that any of the President’s Obamacare promises will be upheld.

EPA Withdraws Numeric Nutrient Criteria (NNC) Federal Standards
As a strong supporter of state’s rights, I believe that regulations are most effective when important decisions are left to state and local authorities who are best placed to work with local stakeholders to create plans that work for everyone. While we have seen a troubling trend of federal agencies looking to infringe on state authority in a number of different issues, I was pleased to see one important area where the EPA has taken a step back to allow Floridians to manage our water bodies.

In 2010, EPA issued a rule relating to numeric nutrient criteria (NNC) for Florida’s rivers and lakes. This decision was based not on science, but was simply a response to litigation from outside groups. In fact, the Florida Department of Environmental Protection (FDEP) has one of the Nation’s best track records when it comes to states protecting their own waters, and they had been working on their own NNC rules well before this EPA ruling came down. I, along with colleagues in the Florida Congressional Delegation and Floridians across the state, immediately objected to EPA’s ruling, and now, nearly four years later, EPA is finally set to withdraw this misguided rule and allow FDEP to move forward with NNC that work for Florida.

Constituent Voice
As the House continues its work to address our broken tax code and some of the currently lapsed tax extenders, I continue to hear from constituents on a range of tax issues, including preserving the mortgage interest deduction and the deduction for state and local property taxes, as well as extending and making permanent the sales tax deduction.

Currently, individuals are permitted to deduct, up to $1 million, the amount of interest paid on the mortgage on a primary or secondary residence and up to $100,000 for the interest paid on home equity debt. In addition, individuals may also fully deduct state and local property taxes from their total federal taxable income. As a former Realtor, I agree that these deductions may encourage homeownership and ease the burden of owning a home by establishing greater financial security for families by reducing their tax liabilities.

With regards to state sales tax deductions, in addition to the beauty of the Emerald Coast, Florida's tax structure, with no-state income tax, attracts individuals, businesses, and retirees to live and work in Northwest Florida. The current tax code includes a permanent federal tax deduction for state income taxes, but excludes a permanent deduction for state sales tax. Though Congress has recognized the inequity in the tax code and has temporarily extended this important deduction four times, the state and local sales tax deduction once again expired at the end of 2013. In addition to cosponsoring legislation to make the state and local sales tax deduction permanent in the tax code, I—along with 61 of my bipartisan colleagues in the House—recently sent a letter to the leadership of the House Committee on Ways and Means encouraging them to act swiftly and include an extension of the state and local sales tax deduction in any tax extenders package that the Committee may consider this year. More than 20 percent of our Nation’s population resides in states which do not have a state income tax, and I believe these individuals should be able to deduct the amount they pay in state sales taxes from their federal tax burden. I can assure you that I will continue to work with my colleagues to ensure that residents of states with no income tax are not penalized because of their state’s preferred tax structure.

In the District

125 Anniversary of the Greater Pensacola Chamber of Commerce
Last week, the Greater Pensacola Chamber of Commerce celebrated its 125th Anniversary. The Chamber’s impressive history goes back 125 years to its first meeting on September 16, 1889, where a small group of business leaders got together at the Pensacola Opera House to form the Pensacola Chamber of Commerce. The Chamber quickly proved its worth to the community, helping to grow the Port of Pensacola into the largest in Florida by 1900.

By that time, the Chamber had also established a strong military affairs component, linking the Pensacola area business community to Northwest Florida’s growing military installations. In fact, the Chamber’s leadership helped lobby for new defense activities during the 1898 Spanish-American War. Over the years, the Chamber has served as a key component driving Pensacola’s transition from a small Navy Yard to the Cradle of Naval Aviation.

Meanwhile, thanks to our area’s impressive population and economic growth, the entire Pensacola area grew from a small town with no paved roads and few utilities to a world-class city that is home to tens of thousands of residents, countless successful businesses, and millions of visitors.

Today, the Greater Pensacola Chamber of Commerce has more than 1,200 members and it works on a daily basis to help bring world-class economic development projects to benefit Northwest Florida’s businesses and citizens. I’m proud to congratulate the chamber on its incredibly successful 125 year history and look forward to our continued work over the years to come.

Dedication of the Walter Francis Spence Parkway
Earlier this year, the Florida State Legislature enacted a law naming the newly created parkway linking Mid-Bay Bridge, Highway 20, and Highway 85 after the late Walter “Walt” Francis Spence, Jr. Walt was a true American patriot, entrepreneur, community leader, and family man, who was at the forefront as a leader in the military affairs community and Northwest Florida civic society for more than 50 years. A native of Northwest Florida, Walt served our Nation during World War II, before successful careers as a civil servant at Eglin and in the defense industry. In 1973, Walt began a second career as a small business owner and entrepreneur, and his leadership and experience helped protect and grow our local military missions and economy. The Walter Francis Smith Parkway, which was dedicated last Tuesday, is a worthy tribute to the work and legacy of a great Northwest Floridian.

As always, I welcome your comments. To share your thoughts on legislation, votes or issues, please visit to send an e-mail or call any of my offices.


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Miller Message 9-14-2014


US Congressman Jeff Miller of Florida's 1st District
Miller Newsletter
September 14, 2014

In the News

President Obama Reveals ISIL Strategy
In his Wednesday night address to the Nation, the President finally laid out many of the appropriate steps required to address the ISIL threat, as he came to the realization that his policy of sitting out and leading from behind is simply not a credible option. He is correct in seeking a coalition of not just NATO partners, but also Middle Eastern allies. Additionally, he stated support to the Government of Iraq and friendly forces in Kurdistan, while mentioning the requirement to involve moderate Sunnis in both Iraq and Syria. If his actions reflect his words, our strategy will certainly see air strikes commence in Syria and continue in Iraq, while we increase the number of American troops on the ground and utilization of intelligence assets.

While these steps are in the right direction, sending our military into harm’s way requires consideration of two questions: 1) Does the threat truly justify the risk and 2) Do we have the willpower to see the fight through to its end? Our strategy moving forward must be prudent and with the long-term threats to our Nation in mind. Half-measures taken for political expediency must not play a role in our collective strategy. There is no more important decision in Congress than to send our servicemembers into harm’s way, and I will work diligently with my colleagues to establish a strategy that consists of clear objectives to set our military up for success for whatever mission we ask of them.

9/11 Anniversary
On Thursday, Americans across the country joined together to remember the 13th anniversary of the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks on our homeland. On that day, 2,977 innocent men, women, and children, representing various faiths, and hundreds of citizens from dozens of other countries, lost their lives in the worst terrorist attack in our Nation’s history.

We as a Nation have endured much in these thirteen years since—prolonged wars on two fronts, loss of thousands of our service men and women, tens of thousands of our warriors returning home with wounds both visible and invisible, vast amounts of resources needed to defend ourselves from this threat, and an awakening that perhaps the world is simply not a safe place. What has not changed, however, is our indomitable resolve to ensure our way of life and the freedom of the human soul will forever have a safe place within our shores, guaranteed by the pages within our Constitution. Further, we vow, to never waver in the face of adversity, and to send a message to any others who may threaten us that their path is an unsuccessful one.

Above all, we renew our solemn promise to forever keep in our national memory the lives of those lost in 2001 and the heroes since the first attack who have sacrificed themselves for our Nation. As such, it is altogether fitting and appropriate that last week Congress presented the Congressional Gold Medal to the Fallen Heroes of 9/11, and will have one Gold Medal on display at the 9/11 World Trade Center Memorial in New York City, NY, at the Pentagon, and at the Flight 93 Memorial in Shanksville, PA. May God bless the families of those affected, and may God continue to bless the United States of America.

Miller Media Clips
To read some recent press clips highlighting my work on behalf of Florida's First
Congressional District and our Nation’s veterans and servicemembers, click on the links below:

Military Coalition honors Jeff Miller
Critics: VA influenced Inspector General to change Phoenix report for spin-control
Not Much Debate As Congress Girds For War With ISIS
Caregivers also answer nation’s call to action
Santa Rosa to seek clarification on Navarre Beach lease issue

Washington Update

H.Res. 644- Condemning and disapproving of the Obama administration’s failure to comply with the lawful statutory requirement to notify Congress before releasing the Taliban 5
The separation of powers written into the Constitution by the Founding Fathers sought to secure and maintain as much representation of the individual citizen as possible and confer upon the government sufficient power to govern, while withholding its ability to infringe on the rights and liberties of American citizens. Indeed, as James Madison wrote in the Federalist No. 47, “The preservation of liberty requires that the three great departments of power should be separate and distinct.” When the Executive Branch breaks the laws established by Congress, the sanctity of that representation is placed in jeopardy, as more power is placed within a single Branch of government than the Constitution intended.

One such breach of the Executive Branch was the Obama Administration’s failure to comply with the law as it relates to the release of prisoners detained at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba. Section 1035 of the 2014National Defense Authorization Actclearly requires that Secretary of Defense meet a number of criteria, including notifying Congress at least 30 days in advance, prior to transferring or releasing any Guantanamo Bay detainee. Yet, on May 31, 2014, the Administration transferred five detainees from Guantanamo Bay to Qatar in exchange for the release Army Sergeant Bowe Bergdahl. The Administration only informed Congress of the transfer the day on which it occurred and did not send written notification until June 2, 2014.

This willful violation of the law necessitates action, and last week, the House passed legislation to address this situation. H.Res 644—which I voted for and which passed the House by a vote of 249-163—condemns the Obama Administration’s failure to comply with the lawful statutory requirement to notify Congress before releasing individuals detained at Guantanamo Bay. The bill also also expresses significant national security concerns over the release of five Taliban leaders, as well as the national security repercussions of negotiating with terrorists. In this increasingly volatile and changing world, our adversaries must know that we will not negotiate with terrorists, and all branches of our government must adhere to the provisions clearly defined by the Constitution.

H.R. 5078- Waters of the United States Regulatory Overreach Protection Act of 2014
In April 2014, the EPA and Army Corps proposed an absurd new rule, known as the “Waters of the United States”, which would redefine the federal government’s authority to regulate our Nation’s waters under theClean Water Act. Under this rule, EPA and Army Corps authority would be so broad that virtually any piece of land with any amount of water on it could conceivably fall under their regulatory regime. This rule is not only an affront to private property rights, it also flies in the face of federalism and the original intent of theClean Water Act. Congress designed theClean Water Actas a federal-state partnership, and the Supreme Court has upheld this principle and ruled that there are limits to the federal government’sClean Water Actjurisdiction.

Yet, the Administration would like to move forward with this unchecked expansion of federal regulatory power, which would negatively impact our economy by foisting massive costs on businesses and threatening jobs across the country, while also assuring that the court system gets filled with costly litigation. Furthermore, the rule would significantly restrict private property rights by restricting the ability of landowners to make decisions about their own property and infringe on the rights of state and local governments to regulate and develop their land.

Simply put, this rule, and any similar rulemaking, needs to be stopped before it is put in place and can start harming the American people and our economy. Last week the House passed legislation that would do just that. H.R. 5078, theWaters of the United States Regulatory Overreach Protection Act of 2014, which I was proud to cosponsor and vote for, would prohibit the EPA and the Army Corps of Engineers from developing, finalizing, adopting, implementing, applying, administering, or enforcing their proposed “Waters of the United States” rule, or use it as a basis for any future rulemaking. Additionally, the bill seeks to uphold and clarify the federal-state partnership at the heart of theClean Water Act, by requiring federal authorities to engage in a federalism consultation with state and local governments to formulate recommendations, while also including provisions that reserve regulatory rights to state and local authorities. I was pleased to see H.R. 5078 pass the House by a vote of 262-152, and I urge my colleagues in the Senate to take up this bill to protect the American people from the threat of an ever-expanding regulatory state.

H.R. 3522- Employee Health Care Protection Act of 2013
Among the most egregious of President Obama’s many broken health care promises is the patently false line, “If you like your health care plan, you’ll be able to keep your health care plan, period.” Millions of Americans in the individual market saw last year that this was not the case, and things are only poised to get worse because starting in the next few months, as many 50 million Americans who have employer-sponsored health care insurance may lose their current coverage. And even if Americans with employer-sponsored insurance aren’t kicked off their current plan, they will see rising costs. According to actuaries at the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, approximately 65 percent of small businesses face a premium increase under Obamacare.

To help prevent this situation as well as protect millions of hard-working Americans from Obamacare, the House passed H.R. 3522, theEmployee Health Care Protection Act of 2013, last week. This commonsense bill would allow those in the group insurance market the option of keeping their current policies through 2019. Additionally, the bill would help address rising costs by giving small businesses and their workers the option to choose a non-Obamacare compliant plan, thereby increasing their access to more affordable options than those offered under Obamacare. H.R. 3522 would also protect individuals who choose non-Obamacare plans by ensuring that they do not face a penalty as a result of Obamacare’s individual mandate. In the House, we remain committed to repealing Obamacare and protecting the American people and our economy from its negative impact.

H.R. 744, Stopping Tax Offenders and Prosecuting (STOP) Identity Theft Act of 2014
Identity theft-related tax fraud is a serious crime on the rise across the country. According to a report from the U.S. Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration, this crime resulted in $6.5 billion in fraudulent refunds in 2011 alone. To help protect the American people from identity theft tax fraud and prevent taxpayers from footing the bill for this illegal activity, the House passed H.R. 744, theSTOP Identity Theft Actlast week. This bill would increase penalties for identify theft related tax fraud from five years in prison to up to 20 years. The bill would also direct the Department of Justice to concentrate efforts in areas where these crimes are most frequent and coordinate with state and local authorities to prosecute and prevent these crimes and protect vulnerable groups from becoming victims.

Veterans Corner

House Committee on Veterans' Affairs Legislative Mark-Up
The House Committee on Veterans’ Affairs successfully reported several bills out of committee last week that address some of the issues facing our veterans today. These measures included:

, to extend a number of expiring authorities pertaining to health care and homeless programs, benefits issues, and housing and employment rights;
H.R.5094, to authorize the VA Secretary to recoup any bonus or award given to any employee, under both Title 5 and Title 38, in addition to providing the employee with an opportunity for a hearing prior to the bonus rescission;
H.R.4281, to propose a modification to VA Acquisition Regulations that would require an attestation upon contract award to ensure the contractor understands the role in providing goods and services in accordance with law;
H.R.5172, to require the VA Secretary to review the lists of POWs maintained by VA and DOD to report any discrepancies to Congress;
H.R.4399, to direct the Secretary to annually issue the organizational performance requirements to be achieved by each senior executive and require VA to provide a detailed explanation to any executive who receives an annual rating lower than fully successful;
H.R.4276, to require VA to issue a report to Congress on a pilot program for assisted living services for veterans with traumatic brain injury and amend the definition of “assisted living” for purposes of the program;
H.R.4971, to require VA to contract with an independent entity to conduct a survey of each VA medical center concerning the experience veterans have in requesting and receiving medical appointments at that facility;
H.R.3387, to require VA to establish standards and procedures and disseminate guidance regarding mental health care for veterans who served on classified or sensitive missions;
H.R.2119, to provide more choice for scheduling location of an appeals hearing to the veteran; and
H.R.3593, to require the Army Corps of Engineers to step in and assist VA to complete its construction projects in Aurora, CO; Las Vegas, NV; New Orleans, LA.; and Orlando, FL closer to budget and original completion date.

Each of these measures will now be sent to the full House for further consideration.

Meeting with VA Secretary Bob McDonald
Last week, for the first time, House and Senate Veterans' Affairs Committee leadership met with VA Secretary Bob McDonald, VA Deputy Secretary Sloan D. Gibson, and VA Acting Assistant Secretary for Legislative Affairs Christopher E. O’Connor. Ranking Member Michaud, Chairman Sanders, Ranking Member Burr and I used the opportunity to discuss the way forward at the department. While we worked hard to pass into law theVeterans Access, Choice and Accountability Act of 2014, legislation alone cannot change the department’s culture. The Department of Veterans Affairs requires bold leadership to steer the agency onto a path that values integrity, accountability and transparency. Additionally, VA leaders must realize that VA does not exist to serve its employees, but to serve our Nation’s veterans. I can’t think of a more important time in VA’s history, and I am hopeful Secretary McDonald understands the task at hand. I look forward to working with him to remake VA into an organization truly worthy of the veterans it is charged with serving.

The Military Coalition 2014 Award of Merit
Last week, I was humbled to receive The Military Coalition's Award of Merit. The Military Coalition is a consortium of 33 military and veterans organizations representing millions of active duty, Guard, Reserve, and retired service members, veterans, families and survivors. Though I was bestowed this honor for my work as House Committee on Veterans’ Affairs Chairman to improve access and accountability for veterans health care, I was not alone in this effort. To that end, this award recognizes all of those who have joined me and the members of my committee in this cause, including the military and veterans service organizations who work tirelessly to advocate for our Nation's warriors. Their support is crucial, and their assistance has helped facilitate the most significant VA reform effort in decades. I look forward to our continued collaboration to increase transparency at the department and hold VA accountable to our veterans and America’s taxpayers.

Congressman Miller being presented The Military Coalition Merit Award for 2014

Meeting with Tom Leppert, CEO of Kaplan
America's veterans have always been a source of strength for our economy, and since becoming Chairman of the House Committee on Veterans’ Affairs, one of my top priorities has been to reduce the veterans unemployment rate and ensure that veterans have the tools they need to successfully transition from leaders on the battlefield to leaders of business and industry. I met with the CEO of Kaplan, Inc. Tom Leppert, to learn more about the company’s innovative ideas to provide service members and veterans with world class higher education. I appreciate Kaplan's efforts to that end and its continued support of our Nation's heroes.

Congressman Miller meeting with Mr. Tom Leppert, CEO of Kaplan, Inc.

Constituent Voice

I continue to hear from constituents across Northwest Florida concerned about our stagnate economy. Like millions of Americans, they are looking to their elected leaders for solutions that will help spur economic growth and allow our Nation’s businesses to start creating the jobs our economy sorely needs. In fact, our economy needs to add approximately 380,000 jobs per month just to get back to pre-recession levels. Yet, as the recent jobs report for August highlighted, we are still far from where we need to be.

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics’ most recent jobs report, August was the worst month for job creation this year, with only 142,000 jobs added to our economy—about 80,000 less than economists had predicted. These numbers simply highlight that the President’s economic policies have failed to deliver the results that he has promised and that the American people deserve. And you could very well argue that the jobs report actually undersells the problem because the labor force participation remains at near historic low levels—with almost 40 percent of working age folks not even attached to the workforce at all—and the staggering number of Americans who have been forced to accept part time work in lieu of finding full time employment stands at 7.3 million.

As I have highlighted in previous newsletters, the House has passed well over 40 jobs bills that remain stalled in the Senate waiting on Harry Reid to decide whether or not he wants to let the Senate even debate these proposals. As the poor job numbers and the constituent calls, letters, and emails that I receive show, the House must and will continue to work and pass commonsense jobs bills that help provide conservative solutions to our economic challenges and pressure the Senate to join us and act.

As always, I welcome your comments. To share your thoughts on legislation, votes or issues, please visit to send an e-mail or call any of my offices.


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Congressman Jeff Miller (R-FL-01) announced today additional office hours as part of his successful mobile office program.  In order to better serve the needs of constituents who are not close to the Congressman’s Pensacola or Ft. Walton offices, special “mobile office” days have been established.  Expanding on the idea first used for “veteran’s assistance days”, members of his staff will be manning the office answering questions about problems with federal agencies or issues affecting the First Congressional District.

 “This is just another way we can better serve our growing population in Northwest Florida,” Miller said.  “We tried the mobile office concept earlier, and we had such an outstanding turnout that we decided to expand the concept and add more dates and locations to the program.”

 The dates and times of the mobile office days are listed below.


Tuesday, August 19, 2014


10:00 am - 11:30 am – DeFuniak Springs Chamber of Commerce

                                   95 Circle Drive, DeFuniak Springs, Florida


2:00 p.m. – 3:30 pm – Crestview Chamber of Commerce

                                   1447 Commerce Drive, Crestview, Florida






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Contact Information

336 Cannon HOB
Washington, DC 20515
Phone 202-225-4136
Fax 202-225-3414

United States Representative Jeff Miller serves Chairman of the House Committee on Veterans’ Affairs.  The Committee on Veterans’ Affairs is responsible for authorization and oversight of the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA.)  VA is the second largest department in the federal government with over 300,000 employees and a budget of over $150 billion.

Miller also serves on the House Armed Services Committees (HASC.)  As a senior member of HASC, Miller has proven to be a strong advocate for our men and women in uniform, and he is one of the leading proponents of Naval Aviation, Special Operations, and Research, Development, Test and Evaluation (RDT&E.)  Miller was instrumental in helping establish Eglin Air Force Base as the joint primary training location for the F-35 Lightning II.

Congressman Miller was appointed to serve on the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence (HPSCI). The HPSCI provides policy guidance and sets classified funding levels for the sixteen agencies of the Intelligence Community funded by the National Intelligence Program and the Military Intelligence Program. Recently, the Intelligence Committee has held important hearings on the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act, U.S. Intelligence Operations against Al Qaeda, and Security Clearance Reform.

Congressman Miller also serves on the North Atlantic Treaty Organization Parliamentary Assembly (NATO PA), where he serves as Vice Chairman of  the subcommittee on Transatlantic Defense and Security Cooperation.

Since coming to Congress, Miller has established himself as one of the staunchest conservatives in the House. He has championed numerous tax relief and veterans’ measures and fought for less government, less taxes, and more personal freedom.

Mr. Miller was sworn in as State Representative in 1998 and again in 2000 to serve District 1. He has served as Chairman of the Utilities & Telecommunications Committee. He was also a member of the Congressional Redistricting Committee, the Committee on General Government Appropriations, the Committee on Rules, Ethics & Elections, and the Council for Ready Infrastructure. He is the past Chairman of the Escambia County Legislative Delegation for 1999-2000.

In addition to his prior service as a State Legislator, Congressman Miller is active in the community as a board member of the Santa Rosa County United Way, the Pregnancy Resource Center of Milton, the Gulf Coast Council of Boy Scouts of America, and the Florida FFA Foundation. He is a member of the Florida Historical Society and various area Chambers of Commerce. Congressman Miller is a native Floridian and was born in 1959. Prior to serving in elected office, he was a real estate broker and deputy sheriff. He earned his Bachelor’s degree in 1984 at the University of Florida.

Representative Miller is married to the former Vicki Griswold. They are members of Olive Baptist Church in Pensacola. They have two children and three grandchildren.

Serving With

Ted Yoho


Ander Crenshaw


Ron DeSantis


John Mica


Bill Posey


Daniel Webster


Rich Nugent


Gus Bilirakis


David Jolly


Dennis Ross


Vern Buchanan


Tom Rooney


Curt Clawson


Mario Diaz-Balart


Carlos Curbelo


Ileana Ros-Lehtinen


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