Kevin Cramer

Kevin Cramer

NORTH DAKOTA

Cramer- House Passes H.R. 766 - Financial Institution Consumer Protection Act

2016/02/04

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Congressman Kevin Cramer announced today the U.S. House of Representatives passed H.R. 766, the Financial Institution Consumer Protection Act.  The bill stops the federal government from using initiatives like Operation Chokepoint to prohibit any federal banking agency from suggesting, requesting, or ordering a depository institution to terminate a “high risk” customer account, or prohibiting an institution from maintaining a banking relationship with a specific customer.  The only exception is if the agency has a material reason to do so, and the reason is not solely based on risk to reputation.   

These “high risk” businesses include retailers of firearms and ammunition.  Some have found their banking relationships abruptly severed with little or no explanation and without reference to any activities of the individual businesses. A congressional investigation found the effect of these initiatives on legitimate businesses was not merely an unintended side-effect, but the outcome of a deliberate attempt to target entire business sectors, while legal, were deemed objectionable by regulators.

“President Obama has used Operation Chokepoint and the power of the federal government to subvert the Constitution and violate the Second Amendment rights of American citizens,” said Cramer.  “This legislation prevents this and any future administration from using their power to violate the rights of a business or an individual just because they disagree with their legal and constitutionally-protected activities.”

Operation Chokepoint is a law enforcement initiative launched by the Department of Justice to combat consumer fraud by “choking off” businesses which have supposedly committed consumer fraud from access to the financial system.

 

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Cramer - House Passes H.R. 1675 - the Encouraging Employee Ownership Act of 2015

2016/02/03

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Congressman Kevin Cramer announced today the U.S. House of Representatives passed H.R. 1675, the Encouraging Employee Ownership Act of 2015. The bill combines the text of H.R. 1675H.R. 686, the Small Business Mergers, Acquisitions, Sales, and Brokerage Simplification Act of 2015; H.R. 1965, the Small Company Disclosure Simplification Act; H.R. 2354, Streamlining Excessive and Costly Regulations Review Act; and H.R. 2356, Fair Access to Investment Research Act of 2015.  H.R. 1675 provides for various financial services related reforms in an attempt to alleviate burdens on employers by repealing or amending outdated Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) regulations.

“Small businesses, private companies and entrepreneurs need access to capital in order to succeed and create jobs. Yet burdensome Washington regulations from the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) prevent many of them from accessing the capital they need to start their businesses,” said Cramer.  “Small businesses created more than 60 percent of the nation’s net new jobs over the past two decades. If we want to restart the American economy, we need to make it easier for entrepreneurs to start businesses.”

Summary of H.R. 1675, the Encouraging Employee Ownership Act of 2015

Title I— The Encouraging Employee Ownership Act of 2015 (H.R. 1675, as reported by the Financial Services Committee)

Under current law as required by SEC Rule 701, all private companies must disclose certain information to employee investors if the value of certain securities issued by the company exceeds $5 million. The bill directs the SEC to raise that amount from $5 million to $10 million and to adjust the threshold every five years for inflation.
 

Title II—The Fair Access to Investment Research Act of 2015 (H.R. 2356)

Under current law, the SEC’s rules generally prohibit an issuer from offering securities for sale to the public without filing a registration statement with the agency. The bill establishes a safe harbor that would allow broker-dealers to issue research reports that cover Exchange Traded Funds (ETFs), so that these reports are not considered “offers” under the securities law. The research reports would need to meet certain requirements to be eligible for this safe harbor.

The title requires the SEC to revise applicable regulations within 120 days of enactment and provides that an interim safe harbor will take effect until the SEC’s rules are finalized.

Title III— The Small Business Mergers, Acquisitions, Sales, and Brokerage Simplification Act of 2015 (H.R. 686)

The title simplifies small business mergers, acquisitions, and sales by exempting merger and acquisition (M&A) brokers that perform services in connection with the transfer of ownership of smaller privately held companies, from SEC registration, with certain exceptions.

Title IV—The Small Company Disclosure Simplification Act (H.R. 1965)

The title provides for both a voluntary and time-limited exemption for all Emerging Growth Companies (EGCs) and other issuers known as smaller reporting companies with annual gross revenues under $250 million from the SEC’s requirements to file their financial statements in an interactive data format known as eXtensible Business Reporting Language (XBRL). The reporting exemption would last up to five years, although the bill would allow EGCs to submit information in XBRL format if they so desired. H.R. 1965 would direct the SEC to conduct an analysis of the costs and benefits of requiring EGCs to file reports using XBRL and report the results to the Congress.

Title V—The Streamlining Excessive and Costly Regulations Review Act (H.R. 2354)

The title requires the SEC to engage in a retrospective review of significant regulations within the first five years after enactment, and every ten years thereafter, to identify regulations that are outmoded, ineffective, insufficient, excessively burdensome, or no longer necessary in the public interest. The bill requires that the SEC Commissioners vote to amend or repeal any regulation identified as having met such criteria and provides for certain public disclosure and commenting.

The title defines “significant regulations” as those with (1) an annual economic impact of $100 million or more as defined by the Office of Management and Budget, or that (2) result in a major increase in costs or prices for consumers, individual industries, federal, state, or local governments, or geographic regions, or (3) cause significant adverse effects on competition, employment, investment, productivity, innovation, or on the ability of U.S. enterprises to compete against their foreign counterparts.

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Cramer, Latta, Pocan and Welch Launch Bipartisan Rural Broadband Caucus

2016/02/03

 

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Reps. Kevin Cramer (R- ND), Bob Latta (R-OH), Mark Pocan (D-WI), and Peter Welch (D-VT) today announced the launch of the Rural Broadband Caucus. The bipartisan initiative will facilitate discussion, educate Members of Congress and staff, and develop policy solutions to the digital divide that exists in rural America.

“Access to high quality, affordable broadband technology continues to transform the economy of rural America,” said Rep. Cramer. “I look forward to working with my colleagues and stakeholders to continue to foster its growth, for the benefit of North Dakota and the entire nation.”  

Congressman Cramer Announcing the Launch of the Rural Broadband in Congress

“Access to broadband is essential.  It is a primary driver of economic development and empowers and connects communities – especially rural communities like I represent in northwest and west central Ohio,” said Congressman Latta.  “This caucus will bring greater attention to the need for high-speed broadband in rural America, and help to encourage and spur innovative solutions to address this growing consumer demand.”  

“Access to reliable, high-speed internet service is vital to economic growth in communities across America,” said Rep. Pocan. “Whether, it is for commerce, education or public safety needs, broadband service allows individuals and businesses in rural communities to take advantage of new technologies and stay connected to a 21st Century economy. There are many parts of my district where residents experience extremely slow download speeds even as low as 1 mbps. I look forward to working with Reps. Welch, Latta, and Cramer to discuss policy solutions to the digital divide existing in rural America.”

“Access to high-speed broadband is no longer a luxury; it’s a necessity in our homes, schools, and for our businesses,” Congressman Welch said. “In order for states like Vermont to succeed and compete in the 21st Century, we must close the digital divide by expanding and updating broadband infrastructure and ensure access to a high-speed, reliable connection for all.”

Cramer, Latta, Pocan and Welch will serve as co-chairs of the new caucus. Other members include Reps. Mike Bost (R-IL), Doug LaMalfa (R-CA), Dave Loebsack (D-IA), Frank Lucas (R-OK), James McGovern (D-MA), Luke Messer (R-IN), Rick Nolan (D-MN), Rob Woodall (R-GA).

A significant digital divide remains between urban and rural America: Over half of all rural Americans lack access to this basic standard of service. In 2015, the FCC updated its broadband benchmark speeds to 25 megabits per second (Mbps) for downloads and 3 Mbps for uploads. According to the FCC, using this updated benchmark, the 2015 report finds that 55 million Americans – 17 percent of the population – lack access to advanced broadband.

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Cramer - House Passes H.R. 3700—Housing Opportunity Through Modernization Act of 2015

2016/02/03

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Congressman Kevin Cramer announced today the U.S. House of Representatives passed H.R. 3700, the Housing Opportunity Through Modernization Act of 2015.    The bill amends the United States Housing Act of 1937 by reforming the Housing and Urban Development (HUD) rental assistance programs and Rural Housing Service Programs.  The reforms are aimed at increasing access to affordable rental housing, creating housing opportunity, and improving the effectiveness of the programs. 

The federal government has played a role in subsidizing housing construction and providing homeownership and rental assistance for lower-income households since the 1930s. The programs are primarily administered by the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), with some assistance provided to rural communities through the Department of Agriculture’s Rural Housing Service and some tax benefits administered through the Department of the Treasury.

“This bill reduces administrative burdens for housing providers, ensures housing programs are run more efficiently, and increases opportunities to create more affordable rental housing for low-income families,” said Cramer.  “These  commonsense housing policy reforms will give more North Dakotans efficient access to affordable housing.”

Summary of H.R. 3700, the Housing Opportunity Through Modernization Act of 2015

Inspection of dwelling units—The bill requires that a public housing agency (PHA) must conduct an initial inspection prior to any Section 8 voucher housing assistance payment is made to a tenant. If the unit has been inspected within the previous 24 months through an alternative inspection method under a Federal, State or local housing program (including the HOME and Low-Income Housing Tax Credit Programs), the tenant may occupy the unit for an interim period until the PHA determines, through an inspection, that the unit meets certain housing quality standards.

Income Reviews—The bill would provide that income reviews for assisted families in dwelling units assisted under the U.S. Housing Act of 1937 shall be made upon the initial provision of housing assistance for the family and annually thereafter, unless the family’s adjusted annual income or deductions decrease by 10 percent.

Limitation on public housing tenancy—The bill, for any public housing tenant determined to have income in excess of 120 percent of the area median income for two consecutive years, requires a PHA either charge the tenant the greater of the fair market rent or the amount of taxpayer subsidy for the unit, or terminate the tenancy of such tenant.

Limitation on eligibility for assistance based on assets—The bill requires that any dwelling unit assisted under the U.S. Housing Act of 1937 may not be rented and assistance may not be provided to any family whose net family assets exceed $100,000, as adjusted for inflation, or a family who has a present ownership interest in real property that is suitable for occupancy by the family as a residence.

Units owned by PHAs—The bill defines the types of units owned by a PHA to be any dwelling unit that is located in a project that is owned by the PHA, by an entity wholly controlled by the PHA, or by a limited liability company or limited partnership where the PHA holds a controlling interest.

PHA project-based assistance—The bill authorizes a PHA to use up to 20 percent of its authorized voucher allocation to attach vouchers to an apartment, rather than a tenant. It would also enable a PHA to provide up to an addition 10 percent of its authorized vouchers to create units targeting homeless individuals and families, veterans, elderly households with person with disabilities, or units in areas where vouchers are difficult to use due to market conditions.

Collection of utility data—The bill requires HUD to collect and publish utility consumption data to assist in the establishment of tenant-paid utility allowances by PHAs, provided the data can be collected in a cost effective manner.

Family unification program—The bill extends the period for which a young adult, recently aging out of foster care, can use a Family Unification Program housing voucher from 18 to 36 months and would increase the maximum age for an individual using a Family Unification Program voucher to 24 years of age.

Rural housing—The bill authorizes the Rural Housing Service single family housing guaranteed loan program to delegate loan approval authority to preferred lenders, in accordance with standards established by the Secretary of Agriculture.

Federal Housing Administration (FHA) mortgage insurance for condominiums—The bill requires the Secretary of HUD to streamline FHA’s condominium project certification requirements so that recertification is substantially less burdensome and applies existing Federal Housing Finance Agency standards, relating to encumbrances under private transfer fee covenants, to FHA insured condominium mortgages.

Housing reforms for the homeless and for veterans—The bill elevates HUD’s Special Assistant for Veterans Affairs to report directly to the Office of the Secretary. The Special Assistant will be responsible for ensuring that veterans have fair access to HUD housing and homeless assistance programs, coordinate all HUD programs and activities relating to veterans, and serve as a HUD liaison with the Department of Veterans Affairs. The bill also requires the Secretary of HUD and Veterans Affairs to submit annual reports to the appropriate congressional committees on the number of veterans receiving assistance by HUD programs and the cost of administering these programs.

 

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Cramer: House Passes H.R. 3662, Iran Terror Finance Transparency Act

2016/02/03

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Congressman Kevin Cramer announced today the U.S. House of Representatives passed H.R. 3662, the Iran Terror Finance Transparency Act.  This bill blocks the Administration from offering sanctions relief to any entity – a bank, business, or individual – included in the Iran Nuclear Deal until the President certifies they have not conducted business with a terrorist organization, Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps, or in support of either Iran’s ballistic missile or its conventional weapons programs.

“Iran’s live fire missile test within 1,500 yards of the USS Harry S. Truman aircraft carrier in the Persian Gulf and carrying out a test of new medium range missiles capable of delivering a nuclear warhead in violation of U.N Security Resolutions prove the country remains a threat,” said Cramer.  “The recent image of 10 American sailors held hostage at gunpoint by the Iranian military proves to me Iran cannot be trusted.  As part of the Nuclear Agreement, Iran will receive up to $150 billion in funds and assets.  Its bellicose language and recent hostile actions towards the United States and our allies in the Gulf region demonstrate Iran has not changed.  Such large-scale sanctions relief allows it to fund terrorists around the globe.”

Cramer joined fellow members of the U.S. House in a letter to U.S. Secretary of Defense Ash Carter demanding a thorough and immediate investigation into the situation and Iran’s actions.  View the letter here.

Recently, former administration officials, appearing before the House Armed Services Committee, said the Obama administration isn't doing enough to reassure Arab allies in the face of threats from Iran.  Former Acting CIA Director Michael Morell said Iran hasn’t changed its behavior since the Iran Nuclear Deal was struck. "Right now, our allies think that they're all alone against their version of the Soviet Union, and that's not too strong a statement,” said Morrell.

Summary of H.R. 3662, the Iran Terror Finance Transparency Act

  • Prohibits the President from removing sanctions on foreign financial institutions until the President certifies such financial institutions have not conducted certain transactions for, or on behalf of, Iran’s Revolutionary Guard Corps, a foreign terrorist organization, or anyone sanctioned in connection with Iran’s weapons of mass destruction and ballistic missile programs;
  • Prohibits the President from removing sanctions on certain Iranian individuals and entities known to have engaged in terrorist activities unless the Administration can certify that such individual or entity is not a terror financier or involved in the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction—particularly ballistic missiles;
  • Prohibits the President from removing the designation of Iran as a “primary money laundering concern” until the President certifies that Iran is no longer supporting terrorism, or pursuing weapons of mass destruction or illicit financial activities;
  • Enhances Congressional oversight over how the Treasury Department licenses businesses to conduct business in Iran; and,
  • Ensures that Hezbollah, Hamas, and the Palestinian Islamic Jihad are designated as terrorist organizations for the purposes of financial sanctions against Iran.

 

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Cramer: House Fails to Override Veto of Obamacare Repeal and Defunding Planned Parenthood

2016/02/03

 

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Congressman Kevin Cramer announced today the U.S. House of Representatives failed to garner enough votes to override President Obama’s veto of H.R. 3762, Restoring Americans' Healthcare Freedom Reconciliation Act of 2015. The bill would have repealed the health exchange subsidies and the Medicaid expansion included in the Affordable Care Act (ACA), repealed the “Obamacare slush fund,” eliminated federal funding for Planned Parenthood, repealed the individual and employer mandate penalties, repealed the medical device and “Cadillac” tax, and enhanced Medicare solvency. The vote to override the veto was 241 to 186. 

“Obamacare has driven up the cost of health care and insurance premiums for millions of Americans and their families.  Using the reconciliation process, Congress was able to avoid a Democrat-led filibuster in the Senate and put on the President’s desk a bill to repeal Obamacare and defund Planned Parenthood,” said Cramer.  “We will continue to pass legislation to repeal Obamacare and force the President to defend his failed policy.  I will work with my colleagues to create solutions which will actually make our healthcare system responsive to the needs of all Americans.”

In addition to dismantling Obamacare, the bill diverted funds from abortion providers such as Planned Parenthood to a broader network of healthcare providers throughout the country.  If the legislation had become law, the federal government’s funding of Planned Parenthood would have been shifted to Federally Qualified Health Centers (FQHC) who serve low-income women in rural and urban communities throughout the nation.  North Dakota has 71 FQHC facilities, which could have received funding to treat thousands of women in North Dakota.

Cramer spoke about the need to defund Planned Parenthood and use those resources to increase women’s health care funding and access through FQHC’s facilities in 2015.  View his speech by clicking on the image below.

 

H.R. 3762 passed both houses using the budget reconciliation process.  It allows Congress once a year to use an expedited procedure when considering legislation to bring existing spending and revenue into compliance with current fiscal priorities established in the annual budget resolution without a filibuster in the Senate.  The adoption of the budget resolution allows Congress to agree upon budgetary goals. In order to meet these goals, Congress must enact legislation that alters or reconciles existing law with its priorities provided in the budget resolution.  This is the first time in a decade the reconciliation process has been used because both the House and Senate passed a budget in 2015. 

A vetoed bill becomes law if two-thirds of the members voting in both the House and the Senate agree to repass the bill, often referred to as a veto override vote.  Assuming all members of both chambers vote, 290 Members of the House and 67 Senators must support the veto override.  The chamber which originated a bill acts on a veto first.  The Senate will not take up a veto override on H.R. 3762 unless the veto override vote receives a two-thirds vote in the House. 

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Cramer: House Approves International Megan's Law

2016/02/02

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Congressman Kevin Cramer announced today the U.S. House of Representatives approved the Senate Amendment to H.R. 515.  The International Megan’s Law to Prevent Child Exploitation and Other Sexual Crimes Through Advanced Notification of Traveling Sex Offenders requires notice whenever a registered child sex offender travels outside the United States, and requests the same information from foreign governments for anyone seeking to enter our country.  Cramer is a co-sponsor of the bill.

“North Dakotans have seen first-hand the scourge of human trafficking and its negative impacts on local communities,” said Cramer.  “Passing an International Megan’s Law gives authorities another tool to track and monitor registered child sex offenders around the globe so they cannot travel to another country and victimize new children.”

In addition, the House passed H.R. 400, the Trafficking Prevention in Foreign Affairs Contracting Act .  It requires the Secretary of State and the Administrator of the United States Agency for International Development to submit reports to Congress on recruitment and placement fees charged by contractors, and would require the agencies to modify their policies to combat human trafficking.

Human trafficking is a $32 billion-a-year illegal activity and second only to drug trafficking as the most profitable form of international crime. The Department of Homeland Security estimates more than 20 million victims exist worldwide. A January 2015 white paper which discusses this epidemic, along with legislation passed by the U.S. House of Representatives, is available here.

Summary of Senate Amendment to H.R. 515

The Senate amendment to H.R. 515 would direct the Department of Homeland Security to establish the “Angel Watch Center” within the Child Exploitation Investigations Unit of U.S. Immigrations and Customs Enforcement to:  receive incoming notifications concerning individuals seeking to enter the United States who have committed offenses of a sexual nature;  determine if individuals traveling abroad are listed on the National Sex Offender Registry; and review the United States Marshals Service’s National Sex Offender Targeting Center case management system.   The center would then be required to share all information received relating to the individual with the Department of Justice or with other federal, state, and local agencies. 

The United States Marshals Service’s National Sex Offender Targeting Center would be required to provide the Angel Watch Center with information regarding any sex-offender 24 hours before the offender’s intended travel or not later than 72 hours after the intended travel.  The Angel Watch Center would be authorized to notify a destination country of a child-sex offender’s impending or current international travel to that country.  The Secretary of Homeland Security would be directed to enter into a Memorandum of Agreement with the Attorney General to facilitate the activities of the Angel Watch Center in collaboration with the United States Marshals Service’s National Sex Offender Targeting Center, including the exchange of information. 

The Angel Watch Center would be required to provide a written determination to the Department of State regarding the status of an individual as a covered sex offender.  The Department of Homeland Security would further be directed to submit an annual report to Congress that includes: (1) the number of instances in which a notification or information was erroneously transmitted to the destination country; and (2) the actions taken to prevent similar errors from occurring in the future.  

Section 5 of the bill would authorize the United States Marshals Service’s National Sex Offender Targeting Center to: (1) transmit notification of a sex offender’s international travel to the destination country of the sex offender, including to the visa-issuing agent or agents in the United States of the country; (2) share information relating to traveling sex offenders with other federal, state, local, and foreign agencies and entities; (3) receive incoming notifications concerning individuals seeking to enter the United States who have committed offenses of a sexual nature and would be required to share the information received immediately with the Department of Homeland Security; and (4) perform other functions directed by the Attorney General or the Director of the United States Marshals Service. 

Section 6 of the bill would amend section 114 of the Adam Walsh Child Protection and Safety Act of 2006 to require a sex offender to provide specific information relating to intended travel outside the United States, including any anticipated dates and places of departure, arrival, or return, and any other itinerary or other travel-related information required by the Attorney General.  If an offender fails to comply with the requirements and knowingly fails to provide information, the offender would be fined under the bill, and imprisoned not more than 10 years, or both. 

Section 7 would express a sense of Congress that the Secretary of State, in consultation with the Attorney General and the Secretary of Homeland Security, should seek reciprocal international agreements or arrangements to further the purposes of the bill.   Section 8 of the bill would prohibit the Secretary of State from issuing a passport to a covered sex offender unless the passport contains a unique identifier, and would authorize the Secretary of State to revoke a passport previously issued without such an identifier of a covered sex offender.

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Cramer Announces Mobile Office Hours in Wishek and Steele

2016/02/01

 

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Congressman Kevin Cramer’s staff will be holding Mobile Office Hours in Wishek and Steele on Wednesday, Feb. 10.  Mobile Office Hours allow constituents to receive assistance with casework from the Congressman’s staff without having to visit his district offices.

“I realize it's not always easy or even possible for people to get to my offices,” said Cramer.  “The use of mobile office hours is an effort to bring services to constituents.”

For help regarding issues with the VA, Social Security benefits or disabilities, Medicare billing problems, immigration issues, military records or medals, or for assistance with any federal agency, constituents can stop by one of the following Mobile Office Hours:

Wednesday, February 10

Wishek Public School & Library

10:30 AM – 11:30 AM

200 S Badger Street

Wishek

 

Kidder County Library

1:30 PM – 2:30 PM

115 Broadway W Ave

Steele

Contact Congressman Cramer’s District Representative Randy Richards with any questions.  His email is randy.richards@mail.house.gov and his phone is 701-738-4880. 

 

 

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Cramer Applauds Colombian Decision to Remove Barriers to U.S.- Raised Beef

2016/01/28

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Congressman Kevin Cramer today applauded Colombia’s decision to allow beef imports from all federally inspected United States facilities.  Currently it only allows imports of beef from U.S. businesses participating in a specific U.S. Department of Agriculture verification program. 

 

“Beef raised in North Dakota and the United States is the safest in the world,” said Cramer.  “This agreement, based on sound science, makes it easier for our cattle producers to meet Colombia’s demand for high quality beef.”

Colombia is a growing market for beef raised in the United States, exporting $14.4 million in 2014. This is a 260 percent increase from 2011. 

“We are very excited about this agreement as it will remove a close to 80 percent Colombian tariff on the import of U.S. beef,” said Julie Ellingson, Executive Vice President of the North Dakota Stockmen’s Association.  "This announcement also speaks volumes about the stringent procedures in place throughout the production chain which ensure the safety of the U.S. food supply and gives consumers here and abroad confidence in our beef.”

Recently Cramer joined House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence Chairman Devin Nunes and some key House members for a meeting with Juan Carlos Pinzón, the Ambassador of Colombia to the United States, to discuss security and trade issues at the U.S. Capitol in Washington, D.C.

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Cramer - New BLM Methane Regulations Duplicative and Burdensome

2016/01/22

 

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Congressman Kevin Cramer made the following comments today after the United States Department of Interior’s Bureau of Land Management (BLM) announced new regulations to regulate methane emissions from flaring on federal and tribal lands across the country. 

“These regulations have nothing to do with protecting the environment and everything to do with shutting down the oil and gas industry in our country, said Cramer. “The President’s commitment to an extreme environmental agenda at the expense of a sound energy policy will adversely impact many businesses and cause job losses throughout the country.  We do not need more regulations to limit the impact of flaring on the environment.  The oil and gas industry understands the value of capturing the methane gas and using it to meet America’s energy needs.”

Currently the Environmental Protection Agency and the State of North Dakota regulate air quality in the state.  In a May 2014 letter, the North Dakota Industrial Commission urged the BLM to adopt flaring regulations which copy the successful ones already in place in the state.  View a copy of the letter here.

According to Cramer, one of the justifications used by the administration for the implementation of these new regulations is the purported environmental and health problems associated with greenhouse gases.  “Even with the dramatic increase in oil and gas development in the state there is no justification for the BLM to adopt these rules because the state’s current regulations protect the environment,” Cramer said.  “In fact, the American Lung Association has scored all North Dakota counties with an A grade in its 2015 “State of the Air” report card.  The BLM’s new rules duplicate the successful regulatory efforts already in place in North Dakota and create a paperwork and compliance nightmare for many small businesses.”

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Contact Information

1032 Longworth HOB
Washington, DC 20515
Phone 202-225-2611
Fax 202-226-0893
cramer.house.gov

Committee Assignments

Energy and Commerce

Kevin Cramer was elected to the U.S. House of Representatives on November 6, 2012. He serves on the House Committee on Natural Resources and the Science, Space and Technology Committee. Natural Resources Committee Chairman Doc Hastings appointed Kevin Cramer to three sub-committees including Energy and Mineral Resources, Public Lands and Environmental Regulation and Indian and Alaska Native Affairs. House Science, Space and Technology Committee Chairman Lamar Smith appointed Mr. Cramer to the Energy Subcommittee, which has jurisdiction over such science as hydraulic fracturing and clean coal technologies, and as Vice-Chairman of the Subcommittee on Investigations and Oversight, which has general and special investigative authority on all matters within the jurisdiction of the full-committee. Congressman Cramer also serves along with Rep. Bill Owens (NY-21) as Co-Chairman of the Northern Border Caucus, fostering continued growth in the U.S.-Canada relationship.

Cramer has a distinguished career in public service. In 1991, Kevin was elected Chairman of the North Dakota Republican Party, making him the youngest member of the Republican National Committee. From 1993 to 2000, he served in Governor Ed Schafer’s cabinet, first as State Tourism Director from1993 to1997, then as State Economic Development & Finance Director from 1997 to 2000. From 2000 to 2003, Kevin was Executive Director of the Harold Schafer Leadership Foundation, which connects emerging leaders from the University of Mary with community business leaders. In 2003, then-Governor John Hoeven appointed Kevin to the Public Service Commission, and in 2004 he was elected to the position, gaining over 65% of the vote. He was re-elected in 2010 with 61.5% of the vote in a three-person contest.

As North Dakota Public Service Commissioner, Cramer helped to develop and oversee the most dynamic economy in our nation. He worked to ensure North Dakotans enjoy some of the lowest utility rates in the nation, enhancing their competitive position in the global marketplace. An energy policy expert, Cramer understands our country’s energy security is integral to our national and economic security.

A strong advocate for the free market system, Cramer has a proven record of cutting and balancing budgets, encouraging the private sector through limited, common sense regulations and limited government.

Cramer has a B.A. degree from Concordia College in Moorhead, MN, a Master’s degree in Management from the University of Mary in Bismarck, ND, and was conferred the degree of Doctor of Leadership, honoris causa, by the University of Mary on May 4, 2013. He is a native of Kindred, North Dakota where he received all of his primary and secondary education. Kevin and his wife, Kris, have two adult sons, Ian and Isaac, two adult daughters, Rachel and Annie, a seven-year-old son, Abel, and a new granddaughter, Lyla.


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