Today, Congressman Ken Calvert (CA-42) joined his California Republican colleagues in introducing a bill to modernize water policies in California and throughout the entire Western United States.
H.R. 2898, the Western Water and American Food Security Act of 2015, aims to make more water available to families, farmers, and communities in California and bordering Western states. The dedication of vast quantities of water to protect certain species of fish listed under the Endangered Species Act (ESA) is a significant obstacle hindering water delivery in Central and Southern California. H.R. 2898 will require federal agencies to use current and reliable data when making regulatory decisions, which in turn will provide more water for communities in need.
Additionally, H.R. 2898 will provide federal regulators with direction and flexibility to capture water during periods of greater precipitation, which can be used to increase California’s water supplies dramatically. Furthermore, the bill will cut red tape holding back major water storage projects that have been authorized for over a decade, which will aid the entire Western United States during dry years.
“The water bill we are introducing today will help California families and businesses that are suffering in our ongoing drought,” said Rep. Ken Calvert (CA-42). “No legislation will magically end our drought but by passing this bill we can take a step in the right direction and work in a collaborative way to enact meaningful solutions. Our bill takes important steps that are the direct result of bipartisan and bicameral conversations, and I look forward to the continued engagement with my House colleagues as well as action from the Senate in the near future. Despite what opponents might say, our legislation does not gut – let alone modify – the Endangered Species Act. Rather, our bill ensures our critical water infrastructure is operated using sound science in order to prevent wasting precious water in ways that do not benefit listed species but come at a high cost to Californians."
Congressman David Valadao (CA-21), the author of the legislation, said, "California's drought has devastated communities throughout the Central Valley and now the consequences are extending throughout the country. Inaction will result in the collapse of our domestic food supply.” He continued, “Congress cannot make it rain but we can enact policies that expand our water infrastructure, allow for more water conveyance, and utilize legitimate science to ensure a reliable water supply for farmers and families.”
Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy (CA-23) stated, “The tragedy of the current drought is no longer isolated to California’s Central Valley, and its response must include tangible solutions that provide us the opportunity to pursue the California Dream. Today is an important step to helping restore the water our communities desperately need by more fully utilizing the most sophisticated water system in the world to quench the robust economic opportunity California families, farmers, workers, and businesses all need.”
“My western colleagues have worked hard to collaborate on a common sense bill that helps people,” stated Rep. Rob Bishop (R-UT), Chairman of the House Committee on Natural Resources. “Communities are suffering and we are putting forward a creative solution to address those needs. I look forward to working on a bipartisan basis in the House and Senate to move this legislation forward.”
“Having personally visited California's Central Valley on this matter, I can attest to the dire situation facing California with the drought,” said Western Caucus Chairman and Natural Resources Vice-Chairman Cynthia Lummis (WY-at large). “This situation demands congressional action to tackle the man-made barriers that are needlessly choking off water supplies crucial not just for California jobs but for the food on American tables. I am pleased to work with my Californian colleagues to ensure we also seize this opportunity to address water issues west wide through water project permit streamlining, enhanced water storage, and protecting state-endowed water rights that are increasingly under attack at the federal level."
“California’s devastating drought is hurting our ag economy and food supply nationwide. This bill provides both the short- and long-term solutions that the Central Valley needs, beginning with more storage. It includes two pieces of legislation I’ve introduced to study and eliminate the threat of predator fish and to increase storage in New Melones reservoir. We can’t keep waiting on the Senate or the President to get engaged and provide Californians with the solutions they need to survive,” said Congressman Jeff Denham (CA-10).
“This bill was designed to address the underlying causes of the drought in a pragmatic and bipartisan manner.” said Congressman Steve Knight (CA-25). “There is no simple answer to this problem. But California needs rational solutions, not more water rations.
“This balanced legislation improves water access for Californians around the state by using improved science to time water deliveries, preserving water rights and moving forward on new surface storage facilities. It protects the most fundamental water rights of all, area of origin rights, ensuring that Northern Californians who live where our state’s water originates have access to it,” said Congressman Doug LaMalfa (CA-01). “Californians have spoken clearly in support of investment in new surface storage projects, and this measure fulfills the promise to voters by advancing projects that would generate over one million acre-feet of water, enough for eight million Californians. We’ll continue to refine this proposal as it moves through the process, but I am proud to cosponsor a bill that addresses both short- and long-term needs of all Californians and supports continued economic growth.”
“Droughts are nature’s fault; water shortages are our fault,” said Congressman Tom McClintock (CA-04). “For a generation, we have failed to build the facilities needed to store water from wet years to have it in dry ones and radical environmental laws have squandered the water we did store. Our water shortage is caused by a shortage of sensible water policy. This bill begins fixing that.”
Congressman Devin Nunes (CA-22) explained, “Facing an annual water deficit of 2.5 million acre-feet south of the Delta, the San Joaquin Valley urgently needs whatever relief it can get. And once again, the House of Representatives is taking action to assist our long-suffering communities. As this entirely preventable water crisis continues to ravage Valley farms and devastate our economy, I urge the Senate to finally begin supporting the House’s consistent efforts to roll back the disastrous government regulations that prioritize fish over families.”
Original cosponsors of Congressman Valadao’s legislation include Reps. Ken Calvert (CA-42), Paul Cook (CA-08), Jim Costa (CA-16), Jeff Denham (CA-10), Duncan Hunter (CA-50), Darrell E. Issa (CA-49), Stephen Knight (CA-25), Dough LaMalfa (CA-01), Kevin McCarthy (CA-23), Tom McClintock (CA-04), Devin Nunes (CA-22), Dana Rohrabacher (CA-48), Edward R. Royce (CA-39), Mimi Walters (CA-45), Mark E. Amodei (NV-02), Rodney Davis (IL-13), Mario Diaz-Balart (FL-25), Cresent Hardy (NV-04), David P. Joyce (OH-14), Cynthia M. Lummis (WY-AL), Dan Newhouse (WA-04), Michael K. Simpson (ID-02), Chris Stewart (UT-02), Scott Tipton (CO-03), and Ryan K. Zinke (MT-AL).
The full text of H.R. 2898 can be found here.Read More
Today, Congressman Ken Calvert (CA-42), along with ten of his California delegation colleagues, sent a letter to U.S. Labor Secretary Thomas Perez urging him to release federal transit funding that the Department of Labor (DOL) continues to deny to California mass transit agencies.
“It’s long past time for the Obama administration to stop playing political games and ensure our transit agencies receive promised funding,” said Rep. Calvert. “If Secretary Perez does not act soon, transit riders throughout California will feel the impact of reduced service and the continued deterioration of transit vehicles. I simply don’t know how anyone can think it is right to penalize California transit riders, employees and taxpayers because the state enacted common sense pension reforms.”
“Riverside County is expanding public transit options, both rail and bus, with strong federal support,” said Riverside County Transportation Commission Chairman Daryl Busch, Mayor of the City of Perris. “It is deeply troubling that at this pivotal time the federal government is holding back the basic funds we rely on every day. I thank Congressman Calvert for standing up for public transit and our residents who depend on it.”
“I applaud Congressman Calvert’s efforts to ensure that Riverside County residents have uninterrupted access to the transit they depend on to get them to school, work and the doctor,” said Riverside Transit Agency Chairman of the Board Andrew Kotyuk. “I am confident that the many seniors, veterans and disabled residents who rely on RTA appreciate the Congressman advancing the conversation on this issue in Washington D.C.”
U.S. Department of Transportation grant funding for mass transit agencies requires the certification of the Secretary of Labor under rules established by the 1964 Urban Mass Transportation Act. Following the passage of pension reform laws in California, which were supported by the state legislature and Governor Jerry Brown, Secretary Perez has refused to certify federal grant funds for all California transit agencies. Last December, the U.S. Eastern District Court ruled against the DOL and called their failure to certify and release the transit funds as “arbitrary” and “capricious.” The DOL has appealed that ruling.
The following members signed the letter to Secretary Perez:
Col. Paul Cook (CA-8)
Rep. Sam Farr (CA-20)
Rep. Duncan Hunter (CA-50)
Rep. Steve Knight (CA-25)
Rep. Doug LaMalfa (CA-1)
Rep. Tom McClintock (CA-4)
Rep. Devin Nunes (CA-22)
Rep. Dana Rohrabacher (CA-48)
Rep. Ed Royce (CA-39)
Rep. Mimi Walters (CA-45)
Today, Congressman Ken Calvert (CA-42) issued the following statement in response to the Supreme Court’s ruling in King v. Burwell:
"Today's decision by the Supreme Court is clearly disappointing to me and my constituents who overwhelmingly believe ObamaCare is a deeply flawed law. Thankfully, in our democracy, the power ultimately resides with the people. Elections have consequences. We now know that the fate of freedom in healthcare is up to the 2016 election. It is indeed a time to choose."
Rep. Calvert Statement on Charleston Shooting
WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, Congressman Ken Calvert (CA-42) issued the following statement in response to the shooting in Charleston, South Carolina:
“The shooting last night at the Emanuel AME Church in Charleston is senseless and heartbreaking. To brutally attack innocent Americans in a house of worship is an evil and horrendous act. My thoughts and prayers are with the victims, their families, and all of Charleston.”Read More
Today, Congressman Ken Calvert (CA-42) issued the following statement in reaction to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) finalizing its Waters of the United States (WOTUS) rule:
“Today, the President has given EPA regulators even more power over the lives of American families and their personal property. Make no mistake, the misguided WOTUS regulation will result in increased redundancy, cause unnecessary delays, kill jobs and harm our economy. My constituents want to see less red tape, not more, yet today’s announcement means our already ineffective federal regulators will have an even greater ability to suppress the rights of property owners.”
Rep. Calvert is the Chairman of the House Appropriations Interior and Environment Subcommittee, which provides funding for the EPA and other agencies. On May 12, 2015, Rep. Calvert joined a bipartisan majority of his House colleagues in supporting the Regulatory Integrity Protection Act (H.R. 1732), which requires EPA to withdraw the WOTUS rule.
Today, Congressman Ken Calvert (CA-42) voted along with a bipartisan majority (240-177) of the House of Representatives in approving the Fiscal Year 2016 Energy and Water Appropriations bill.
“The drought in California continues to highlight the importance of investing in critical water infrastructure projects,” said Rep. Calvert. “The bill approved by the House today will help fund a number of projects, both in California and around the country, that are essential to maintaining water supplies and flood control. Despite these investments, far too many projects, especially water storage projects in California, continue to be studied to death. Thankfully, California members of the Appropriations Committee have inserted language in the bill that will require federal agencies to complete these studies by specified dates in the near future.”
Fiscal Year 2016 Energy and Water Appropriations Bill Highlights
(Courtesy of the House Appropriations Committee)
The Appropriations Committee approved an amendment by Congressman David Valadao (CA-21) that would direct the Bureau of Reclamation to complete the Shasta and Temperance Flats feasibility studies by the end of this year; the Los Vaqueros and Sites Reservoir feasibility studies by November 30, 2016; and the San Luis Reservoir lowpoint improvement project, which is studying how to increase San Luis Reservoir, by December 31, 2017.
INVESTING IN AMERICAN INFRASTRUCTURE
Cutting the Administration's Red Tape
Today, Congressman Ken Calvert (CA-42) voted along with a bipartisan majority (255-163) of the House of Representatives in approving the Fiscal Year 2016 Military Construction and Veteran Affairs Appropriations bill.
“Anything short of prompt, high quality healthcare for our veterans is simply unacceptable to me,” said Rep. Calvert. “The funding bill approved by the House today once again provides significant funding for the infrastructure our veterans and active duty military members need and deserve. I am also pleased that the Appropriations Committee has included a number of measures within the bill that hold the VA accountable for reforming the broken parts within our veteran healthcare systems.”
Fiscal Year 2016 Military Construction and Veteran Affairs Appropriations Bill Highlights
(Courtesy of the House Appropriations Committee)
MEETING OUR VETERAN OBLIGATIONS
Ensures our veterans receive their much deserved health, job and training, and other benefits by increasing discretionary funding for veterans programs by 5.6% over last fiscal year.
Provides $48.6 billion for VA Medical Services ($3.4 billion above last fiscal year) to care for 6.9 million patients.
RIGHTING THE SHIP AT VA
Speeds up VA claims processing by providing $163 million above last year.
Helps ensure our veterans receive proper medical care by including $233 million for the modernization of the VA electronic health record system.
Tightens oversight of taxpayer dollars to address mismanagement.
SUPPORTING OUR ACTIVE-DUTY SERVICEMEMBERS
Provides support systems and infrastructure to maintain the morale and readiness of our warfighters and care for their loved ones.
Congressman Ken Calvert (CA-42) is pleased to announce his 23rd Annual Academy Night event for high school students in the 42nd Congressional District who are interested in attending one of the U.S. military academies.
Academy Night features presentations from the U.S Air Force Academy, the U.S. Military Academy at West Point, the U.S. Naval Academy, the U.S. Merchant Marine Academy and the U.S. Coast Guard Academy.
When: Wednesday, May 6, 2015
6:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m.
Where: Ortega High School Conference Center
520 Chaney Street in Lake Elsinore
Students will learn about the admission requirements and the congressional nomination process, and will have the opportunity to meet with representatives from each academy, members of Rep. Calvert's Academy Nominations Selection Committee, and his congressional staff – all of whom will be more than willing to help the students throughout the application process.
For more information about Rep. Calvert's military academy nomination process please click here.
The 42nd District encompasses the western edge of Riverside County including the cities of Eastvale, Norco, Corona, Lake Elsinore, Wildomar, Canyon Lake, Menifee, Murrieta and a portion of Temecula.
Today, Congressman Ken Calvert (CA-42) introduced legislation, the Employee Bonus Protection Act (H.R. 1981) aimed at protecting employee bonuses from overly complex federal requirements.
“Both employees and their employers lose out when complicated government regulations make it tougher to run a business,” said Rep. Calvert. “The government needs to get out of the way and make it easier, not harder, for businesses who want to reward employees with additional compensation. The Employee Bonus Protection Act is a commonsense solution that will help hard working Americans and small businesses.”
Under the Fair Labor Standards Act of 1938 (FLSA), the Department of Labor requires that any employer calculate and factor in earned bonuses (including bonuses paid and lodging provided) when determining an employee’s “regular rate of pay” for purposes of overtime compensation for each pay period. This requirement poses an unnecessary burden on businesses and employers, large and small alike, who are required to recalculate each employee’s rate of pay depending on different bonuses earned every month. In fact, many businesses are forced to eliminate these incentives entirely because they cannot afford to hire an accountant or designate an employee to determine these changing rates of pay, disincentivizing employees to innovate and produce results for their employers, and ultimately their customers.
The Employee Bonus Protection Act would amend the FLSA to provide that an employee's regular pay rate, for purposes of calculating overtime compensation, will not be affected by additional payments to reward an employee or group of employees for meeting or exceeding productivity, quality, efficiency, or sales goals under a gain sharing, incentive bonus, commission, or performance contingent bonus plan.
Today, Congressman Ken Calvert (CA-42) issued the following statement in response to the Air Force’s decision not to select March Air Reserve Base as a candidate base for the new KC-46 tanker aircraft:
“March Air Reserve Base plays a significant role contributing to our military’s air mobility, including the air refueling mission, and was the only Air Force Reserve base located on the West Coast that was in contention for this round of base selections. That is why many people, myself included, were so surprised to learn that March was not chosen as a candidate base. The air refueling mission at March has and will continue to be an integral part of the base’s significant support of our national security. I will continue to advocate for March as an ideal location for the future beddown of KC-46s.”
In September of 2009 I attended the Foundation for Community and Family Health’s annual "Walk for Health" at Dos Lagos in Corona. The "Walk for Health" had over 500 plus walkers that ranged from all ages. Women, daughters, sisters, grandmothers, friends, husbands, and many others from throughout the community walked in honor of Breast Cancer survivors everywhere. All proceeds from the walk went right back into the community via The Foundation-which offers free mammogram tests to women of all ages. My office formed a team, and Team Calvert has been directly touched by the movement. One of my staff has a mother who is a Stage 3 Breast Cancer survivor! For women everywhere, I will continue to do my part to find a cure!Read More
Rep. Calvert visits local education professionals at Sherman Indian High School.Read More
2269 Rayburn HOB
Washington, DC 20515
Ken Calvert, a lifelong resident of Riverside County and 17-year small business owner in the restaurant and real estate industries, represents the 42nd Congressional District of southern California. Calvert was born on June 8, 1953 and attended neighborhood public schools, graduating from Corona High School in 1971. He attended two years at Chaffey College, in Alta Loma, and then enrolled at San Diego State University, where he graduated in 1975 with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Economics. Ken is a Protestant and is involved in several local community volunteer organizations.
The 42nd District encompasses the western edge of Riverside County including the cities of Eastvale, Norco, Corona, Lake Elsinore, Wildomar, Canyon Lake, Menifee, Murrieta and a portion of Temecula. Rep. Calvert was first elected to the House in 1992 and was part of the historic “Contract with America” class in 1994 that swept the House to Republican control for the first time in 40 years.
In the 113th Congress, Rep. Calvert continues to serve on the House Appropriations Committee where he is the Chairman of the Interior and the Environment Subcommittee. Rep. Calvert is also a member of the Defense Subcommittee and the Energy and Water Subcommittee. He also serves on the House Budget Committee. Rep. Calvert was also selected to serve as the Chairman of the California Republican Delegation.
Rep. Calvert has been the California Republican Delegation’s voice on the House Steering Committee, which determines House Republican committee assignments, since 2003.
In the 113th Congress, Rep. Calvert’s legislative priorities includes: enacting pro-growth policies that will help our struggling economy; reducing our national debt; reforming our tax code; supporting our military around the world and supporting the mission in Afghanistan; strengthening our borders and making the use of E-Verify mandatory for all employers in the U.S.; creating long-term solutions to California’s energy and water problems; working towards the implementation and funding of new transportation corridors vital to Riverside County’s future; reducing the time it takes to build infrastructure projects by making common sense, bi-partisan reforms to our environmental laws; and, much more.
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