Tipton, House Colleagues Push for Affordable Electricity for Americans
WASHINGTON—Today, the U.S. House of Representatives passed two resolutions (S.J. Res. 23 and S.J. Res. 24) disapproving of the Obama Administration’s regulations to stunt the responsible production of affordable and reliable energy. The House is also expected to vote this week on the North American Energy Security and Infrastructure Act (H.R. 8) which seeks to update outdated energy policies to meet America’s energy needs and encourage economic growth.
This week, Congressman Scott Tipton (R-CO) spoke on the House floor in support of responsible coal production, citing its critical importance to providing a source of affordable and reliable electricity for Americans, and underscoring the significant impact it has on Colorado’s economy.
Watch Tipton Speak on the House Floor HERE
Tipton’s remarks as prepared for delivery follow:
“It is no secret that American coal production and coal-fired electric generation meet with regulatory and legal obstacles at every turn.
“In 2008, the President famously outlined an energy vision in which he stated, “If someone wants to build a coal-fired power plant, they can. It’s just that it will bankrupt them.” There is no ambiguity in that statement – the Administration is certainly not seeking to encourage coal production. Indeed the opposite.
“The Environmental Protection Agency just finalized its so-called “Clean Power Plan”, a carbon emissions rule that will force states to submit complex plans to meet federally mandated emissions goals. The EPA estimates the annual cost of this rule to be anywhere from $5.5 billion to $8.8 billion annually, but other estimates are much higher – ranging from $366 billion to $479 billion from 2017 to 2031.
“Now, why is this important? Oftentimes when we’re talking about fees and taxes that will be applied, we assume that someone else gets to pay. The reality is that these costs are shouldered by hardworking Americans who will see their energy bills increase.
They impact the most vulnerable people in our society including senior citizens on fixed incomes and low income families who will have to make tough decisions in their already tight household budgets just to heat their homes.
“In my own district in rural western Colorado, upwards of 500 coal mining jobs in Delta County - with wages and benefits exceeding $66 million - have already been lost, and more are threatened due to anti-coal lawsuits. Another 220 are threatened in Moffat and Rio Blanco Counties for the same reason. There is no shortage of examples such as these in coal-producing states. We need to be clear, as Americans, we want blue skies and clear streams and we have an opportunity to demonstrate that we can create a win-win with the technology that is in place. To see blue skies and a coal-fired power plant, then come to with me to Moffat County to visit Craig, Colorado.
“The Department of the Interior has also laughably announced it will be reviewing whether the public is receiving a fair return on coal production when it is the federal government’s own policies, and the actions of its lawsuit-happy allies, that are actively suppressing the production of coal and its associated revenues.
“Proposing to raise the royalty rate – which cuts in to the profitability of coal production and makes it less attractive to mine - while simultaneously pushing other policies like the Clean Power Plan that make coal less attractive as a power source will mean the death of the industry.
“Let us also not forget that royalties are only a portion of the revenues and benefits generated by responsible coal mining. There are bonus payments received at the time of lease, as companies seek to outbid one another for the development rights (again, higher demand will result in higher bonus payments), and there are annual rentals and other fees.
“State and local governments also accrue revenues through their own assessed taxes and fees on equipment and production, and the high wages of employees are most definitely a boon to local communities.
“All told, coal production contributes some $2.8 billion dollars to Colorado’s economy and provides 64% of its electricity. So while it is true that our energy portfolio is made stronger through diversity, coal can, does and must continue to fill a vital role in that equation.
“Responsible coal production provides a reliable fuel for baseload electrical generation. Its low cost equates to savings for the average American on their monthly energy bill (an especially critical consideration as I mentioned for lower income families, seniors, and others on fixed incomes), and its abundance domestically contributes toward American energy security.
“I look forward to robust debate on the floor this week as we continue to push for policies that will secure all-of-the-above American energy independence. Thank you Mr. Speaker and I yield back the balance of my time.”
1 Carbon Pollution Emission Guidelines for Existing Stationary Sources: Electric Utility Generating Units, 79 Fed. Reg. 117 (June 18, 2014).
2 Harrison, Jr., Dr. David and Dr. Anne E. Smith, “Potential Energy Impacts of the EPA Proposed Clean Power Plan”, NERA Economic Consulting (October 2014).
Congressman Scott Tipton (CO-03) will hold a meeting in Silverton on Saturday, December 5th, to gather input from members of the Silverton community on potential options to cleanup abandoned mine contamination. Those options include Good Samaritan legislation, funding a water treatment facility, and an EPA Superfund designation. The meeting will last approximately one hour.Read More
WASHINGTON—Highlighting the positive impacts small businesses have on communities across the nation, Congressman Scott Tipton (R-CO), today, encouraged participation in Small Business Saturday. Small Business Saturday, the Saturday after Thanksgiving (November 28), is a day to show support for local businesses and recognize their impact on communities.
“Shopping small is a sure way to find unique, high quality items, and it's a great opportunity to show support for neighbors and strengthen the community. Small Business Saturday is a valuable tool to raise awareness about local businesses in the community and help encourage patronage all year long,” said Tipton. “The driving force behind healthy, vibrant and thriving local economies, small businesses create the vast majority of new jobs in this country and provide opportunities for millions of families to prosper and achieve the American Dream. It’s critically important that Congress advances policies to empower these Main Street job creators. From working to reduce overly burdensome government regulation and bureaucratic red tape, to keeping tax rates low, that continues to be my focus.”
Tipton, the co-founder of the Congressional Small Business Caucus, is a co-sponsor of a resolution in the House that states: “The House of Representatives supports the designation of a ‘Small Business Saturday’ and supports efforts to encourage consumers to shop locally; and to increase awareness of the value of locally owned small businesses and the impact of locally owned small businesses on the economy of the United States.”
For more information on Small Business Saturday including a list of participating local retailers, and free marketing materials and strategies available to businesses, visit: https://www.sba.gov/about-sba/sba-initiatives/small-business-saturdayRead More
By Congressman Scott Tipton
I take issue with President Obama and Governor Hickenlooper’s refusal to address the realities of the national security risks posed by the federal government continuing to admit thousands of refugees from Syria without the capability to stringently verify their identities and backgrounds.
Without the capability to sufficiently vet and verify the identities of refugees coming from Syria, the government admitting thousands of refugees would provide ample opportunity for an ISIS terrorist to hide amongst.
President Obama and Governor Hickenlooper claim that a stringent vetting process is already in place, but I and many others, including national security and military experts, have serious concerns that the current screening process is woefully inadequate.
In October, one of the President’s top security officials, FBI Director James Comey, testified in the House Committee on Homeland Security that the United States does not have the capability to effectively vet Syrian refugees, citing numerous challenges to proving the identities of individuals under the current system.
This stands to reason since there are no records or databases in Syria against which to confirm the identities of refugees. Under the current system, the most intensive part of the review process is an interview, where refugees are taken at their word as they answer questions that attempt to verify their identity.
This system is ripe for exploitation by ISIS terrorists and others looking for a way to enter into the U.S. by posing as refugees. In Paris, just a week ago, one of those involved in carrying out the senseless and horrifying attacks masqueraded as such.
To be clear, Syrian refugees who are innocent victims of war are not the threat. Nobody serious is saying that. Furthermore, those who are calling for our country to ban refugees who practice the Muslim faith couldn’t be more wrong and have no place in this discussion. I will remind them that we are a nation founded on the principle of religious liberty for all, and that is sacred.
My concern is that terrorists will seek to exploit the plight of innocent refugees and the goodwill of the United States as a way to enter into our country, intent on killing Americans. The risk is legitimate; it has happened before.
In 2011, President Obama suspended the admission of refugees from Iraq for six months so the U.S. government could review its screening process after al Qaeda terrorists were found to have entered the country as refugees. We recently voted to take a similar course of action in the House of Representatives.
This week we passed our legislation (H.R. 4038) with a veto-proof bipartisan majority to establish the most thorough verification process possible and require all three of our national security agencies to vet and certify that a refugee poses no threat before being allowed into the United States. If stringent verification is the goal—as the President and Governor have claimed—then they should wholeheartedly embrace this commonsense step.
Until this process is in place, and we have the capability to more stringently vet refugees coming from this war-torn region, the federal government should immediately suspend the admission program. Our bill requires that. This timely and critical legislation now goes to the Senate. I strongly urge Senator Michael Bennet to lead in getting this to the President’s desk.
We all have empathy for the innocent victims of war who have been displaced in Syria, but that doesn’t mean that the U.S. government should prioritize the admission of insufficiently vetted refugees over the safety of the American people.
It’s possible to show compassion and provide security and the opportunity for these displaced people to rebuild their lives without risking Americans’ safety in the process. One way to do that is to work with coalition and peacekeeping forces to establish safe-zones within Syria and friendly countries in the region.
These are the types of solutions on which we should be focused and merit immediate pursuit.
*Published in the Denver Post on Sunday, November 22, 2015Read More
Calls for Bennet to Break Silence, Lead On Syrian Refugee Issue in Senate
WASHINGTON—Congressman Scott Tipton (R-CO) reaffirmed his call to Senator Michael Bennet (D-CO) to lead in the Senate on the Syrian refugee issue. Bennet has been silent on Senator Harry Reid’s threats to block legislation passed yesterday in the House by a veto-proof bipartisan majority, and has declined to take a position on the four and one-half page bill.
Tipton is a co-sponsor of the bill—known as the SAFE Act—which would suspend admission of refugees from Syria into the United States until more stringent vetting processes are in place.
“Yesterday, a veto-proof bipartisan majority of the House took action to suspend the admission of refugees from Syria into the U.S. until more stringent verification of their identities and backgrounds is possible. President Obama and Governor Hickenlooper have both called for stringent verification of refugees, and the bill we passed would ensure that happens,” said Tipton. “This is a commonsense security measure with broad support, and yet it’s been radio silence from Senator Bennet while Harry Reid threatens to block even debating it in the Senate. Governor Hickenlooper refused to take a stand for the people of Colorado on this issue, and instead chose to stand behind the President’s unilateral actions. I’m calling for Senator Bennet to step out from behind Harry Reid’s shadow to lead in the Senate and support this bipartisan legislation that protects Americans’ security. You can’t be non-committal when national security is at stake. It is too important to remain silent on—Coloradans deserve leaders who will put their security first.”
The SAFE Act, H.R. 4038, would strengthen the national-security vetting process to better ensure terrorists are not able to enter the U.S. by exploiting humanitarian programs. The bill would require that the Secretary of Homeland Security, the Director of the FBI and the Director of National Intelligence unanimously certify to Congress that a refugee does not pose a security threat before being allowed to enter into the country. Tipton has also co-sponsored H.R. 4025, to prohibit the use of any federal funds to admit refugees from Syria.Read More
Tipton Calls for Bennet to Work to Advance Bipartisan House-Passed Bill on Syrian Refugees
WASHINGTON— Congressman Scott Tipton (R-CO) called on Senator Michael Bennet (D-CO) to join him in advancing legislation to suspend admission of refugees from Syria into the United States until more stringent vetting processes are in place. Tipton is a co-sponsor of H.R. 4038, American Security Against Foreign Enemies (SAFE) Act of 2015, which passed the House with a veto-proof bipartisan majority.
“Today, the House passed legislation with a veto-proof bipartisan majority to suspend the admission of refugees from Syria into the U.S. until more stringent verification of their identities and backgrounds is possible. Our bill would establish the most thorough verification process possible and require all three of our national security agencies to vet and certify that a refugee poses no threat before being allowed into the United States. If stringent verification is the goal—as President Obama and Governor Hickenlooper have claimed—then they and Senator Michael Bennet should wholeheartedly embrace this commonsense step,” said Tipton. “I strongly urge Senator Bennet to join me in standing up for the people of Colorado—instead of standing behind Harry Reid—by leading in the Senate to advance this timely and critical national security legislation to the President’s desk.”
H.R. 4038, would strengthen the national-security vetting process to better ensure terrorists are not able to enter the U.S. by exploiting humanitarian programs. The bill would require that the Secretary of Homeland Security, the Director of the FBI and the Director of National Intelligence unanimously certify to Congress that a refugee does not pose a security threat before being allowed to enter into the country. Tipton has also co-sponsored H.R. 4025, to prohibit the use of any federal funds to admit refugees from Syria.Read More
Advocates for Alternative Approach to Ensure Safety of Refugees
WASHINGTON—Underscoring that the federal government must rigorously vet and verify the identities of refugees, Congressman Scott Tipton (R-CO) took steps to halt the President’s unilateral actions to admit tens of thousands of unverified Syrian refugees into the United States. Tipton urged that the focus instead be on moving forward with alternative options to protect the refugees, including establishing safe-zones within Syria.
“We should show compassion to the innocent victims of war and do what we can to provide security and an opportunity for them to rebuild their lives. There are options, including establishing safe-zones within Syria, to help ensure the wellbeing of Syrian refugees without risking Americans’ safety. Those are solutions we should be focused on, rather than on admitting tens of thousands of refugees without the capacity to verify who they are, thereby creating a serious and avoidable national security threat,” said Tipton. “Above all else, our elected representatives have a responsibility to act in the best interest of the safety and security of the American people. In order to do that, at the most basic level, we need to know who is being granted access to our country. The challenge is that there is no database in Syria we can access to check the documentation of refugees against.”
In an October hearing in the House Committee on Homeland Security, FBI Director James Comey testified that there are numerous challenges to verifying the identities of Syrian refugees.
“We can only query against that which we have collected,” Comey said. “And so if someone has never made a ripple in the pond in Syria in a way that would get their identity or their interest reflected in our database, we can query our database until the cows come home, but there will be nothing show up because we have no record of them.”
Tipton has co-sponsored H.R. 4025, to prohibit the use of any federal funds to admit refugees from Syria, as well as H.R. 4038, American Security Against Foreign Enemies (SAFE) Act of 2015, to strengthen the national-security vetting process to ensure terrorists are not able to enter the United States by exploiting humanitarian programs. The SAFE Act would require that the Secretary of Homeland Security, the Director of the FBI and the Director of National Intelligence unanimously certify to Congress that the individual does not pose a security threat before they are allowed to enter into the United States. The House is expected to vote on legislation this week related to the Syrian refugee issue.
“Until the government has the capability to sufficiently vet and verify the identities of the refugees, admitting tens of thousands of them without that safeguard would provide ample opportunity for an ISIS terrorist to hide amongst them posing as an asylum seeker,” Tipton said. “I can’t in good conscience sit idly by and allow that to happen. That is why I am working with my colleagues in the House on a number of paths forward to halt President Obama and Governor Hickenlooper’s plan to admit unverified Syrian refugees into the United States, and identify alternative options to provide for the safety of innocent victims of war without jeopardizing the security of the American people.”
Tipton and his House colleagues also sent a letter to the President, today, writing: “We urge your immediate action to suspend these admissions until effective vetting and monitoring processes are established that ensures the safety of the American people.”
A pdf of the full letter is available HERE.Read More
WASHINGTON—Today, Congressman Scott Tipton (R-CO) released a statement underscoring the serious national security risks posed by the President’s unilateral plans to accept tens of thousands of Syrian refugees into the United States. Tipton called for an immediate stop to the admission of Syrian refugees into the U.S. given security risks.
“The risks posed to our national security by admitting tens of thousands of refugees from a war-torn region that is currently the global hotbed for terrorist activity are very real. The President is unilaterally admitting tens of thousands of Syrian refugees into the country without ways to sufficiently verify who they are. As my colleague Rep. Peter King, (R-NY), Chairman of the House Homeland Security Subcommittee on Counterterrorism and Intelligence, pointed out over the weekend, there are no government records or databases in Syria to confirm the identities of the refugees who are being admitted, meaning that they cannot be sufficiently vetted. While most of these people are innocent and victims themselves, all it takes is one ISIS terrorist posing as an asylum seeker to come to the United States and inflict harm.
“The Obama Administration’s failed policies in the Middle East over the past seven years have resulted in extremely high numbers of refugees fleeing the war-torn region. And while we all have empathy for the innocent victims of war who have been displaced in Syria, the U.S. government should not place the interest of refugees over the security of the American people. ISIS has now put out a video threatening an attack on Washington similar to the attack on Paris. We should take them at their word and take all necessary national security precautions to prevent such an attack from happening.
“Given that at least one of the bombers involved in the Paris attacks had a Syrian refugee passport, the threat is very real and the risk is high. The U.S. should immediately stop accepting Syrian refugees.”
Tipton is currently in communication with his House colleagues working to stop the President’s unilateral actions to allow as many as 100,000 refugees from Syria to enter the U.S. by 2017. There are a number of legislative efforts expected to be put forward in the House this week to that end.Read More
WASHINGTON—Today, Congressman Scott Tipton (R-CO) released the following statement in honor of Veterans Day 2015. Tipton will be speaking at the Veterans Day Ceremony in Pueblo, Colorado.
Watch: Tipton’s video statement here
The full text of Tipton’s Veterans Day statement follows:
Whether it’s a family member, friend or neighbor, most of us are fortunate to know someone who has proudly served in our country’s Armed Forces. This is especially true in Colorado where we are blessed that so many veterans and active duty men and women call our state home.
These special individuals have, since our country’s founding, made the freedom, independence and liberty we cherish, possible. Our nation, our way of life, and the American Dream rests on the shoulders of our military men and women, who stand guard in defense of our freedom.
Our soldiers have our backs 24-7.
Veterans Day is an opportunity for our nation to show our appreciation and recognize the service and sacrifice of those who have answered this extraordinary calling. While we pay special tribute to them on this day, we are grateful every day for our nation’s heroes, and for the continued impacts they make in all aspects of our communities. It’s important that we remind them of our gratitude year round by showing our support with everything from saying thank you to volunteering at a local veterans’ service organization.
We owe our nation’s veterans a tremendous debt of gratitude.
We can honor their sacrifice by giving them the recognition they deserve, ensuring they receive the benefits they have earned, and providing our current troops with the tools they need to continue to defend our nation as effectively and safely as possible.
Without them, none of this—our freedom, prosperity or security—would be possible.
I want to wish all of you veterans out there and your families a happy Veterans Day. Thank you for your service. You are true heroes. May God bless you all, and may God bless America.
Tipton Statement on Transportation Bill Vote
WASHINGTON – Congressman Scott Tipton (R-CO) issued this statement following his vote against H.R. 22, the DRIVE Act:
“We need a long-term transportation bill, but it needs to be paid for. Putting off the responsibility to pay for decisions made today is no way to govern, which is why I voted against the amendments en gros to the transportation bill. Only three years of the six year bill are paid for, leaving the rest of the legislation’s tab to be picked up at a later date by the American people should a pay-for not be identified by future Congresses.
“I urge my colleagues in the House and Senate to address this funding shortfall in conference committee, and bring a responsibly paid-for transportation bill back to each chamber that is devoid of budgetary gimmicks and spending savings that will never actually be realized. The American people don’t want gimmicks; they just want the job done right.”
218 Cannon HOB
Washington, DC 20515
Congressman Scott Tipton was raised in Cortez, Colorado. He graduated from Ft. Lewis College in Durango, where he studied Political Science and became the first person in his family to earn a college degree. After college, he returned home to Cortez and co-founded Mesa Verde Indian Pottery with his brother Joe. It was through his business that Scott met his wife, Jean, who is a former school teacher. The Tipton’s have two daughters, Liesl and Elizabeth, and two sons-in-law, Chris and Jace.
After a lifetime running his small business, Scott was elected as a Republican to the Colorado House of Representatives for the 58th District in November of 2008. During his time at the state House, he worked to ensure quality water for the people of Colorado and to improve the air quality of Southwest Colorado. He also sponsored legislation to protect children from the worst criminal offenders by mandating harsher penalties for child sex-offenders and allowing law enforcement to collect DNA evidence from suspects through Jessica’s Law and Katie’s Law.
Scott was first elected to the U.S. House of Representatives in 2010 and again in 2012 for a second term.
In the 112th Congress, Scott pushed hard to advance a federal version of Katie’s Law to encourage additional states to implement minimum DNA collection standards and enhanced collection processes for felons in order to strengthen law enforcement’s ability to prevent violent crimes, and protect women and children. That effort became a reality when the President signed Katie’s Law on January 3, 2013.
Using his positions on the House Natural Resources, Agriculture and Small Business Committees, Scott has is fighting for the issues that most directly impact Coloradans, many of which involve our state’s extensive open spaces and natural resources. In his first term, Scott introduced legislation to encourage healthy forest management and prevent wildfire, as well as passed a bill in the House with bipartisan support to advance the development of clean, renewable hydropower. He is also leading the charge in Congress to stop a federal grab of privately-held water rights, standing up for farmers and ranchers, the ski industry, and all who rely on their water rights to survive.
Scott is champion of advancing an all-of-the-above energy solution that balances common sense conservation with responsible development. He passed the Planning for American Energy Act through the House (as a title under the American Domestic Energy and Jobs Act) to put requirements into place to develop wind, solar, hydropower, geothermal, oil, natural gas, coal, oil shale and minerals, based on the needs of the American people.
Scott has used his experience as a small businessman to inform his work as a Subcommittee Chairman on the Small Business Committee. Here he has worked to protect farmers and ranchers from regulatory overreach, as well as push for expanded trade opportunities for Colorado products. Scott is a co-founder of the Congressional Small Business Caucus, a bipartisan caucus committed to open dialogue on the issues that most impact small businesses. Members of the Congressional Small Business Caucus are dedicated to advancing efforts to foster the economic certainty needed for small businesses and entrepreneurs to succeed and create jobs.
In the 113th Congress, Scott continues to represent the many interests of one of the most diverse and geographically vast districts in the nation. He will fight to bring Colorado common sense to Washington—focusing on reforming regulation, protecting Colorado’s natural environment, encouraging responsible all-of-the-above energy development, reducing government spending, and removing hurdles so that small businesses can do what they do best—create jobs.
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The House is taking action this week to encourage the production of affordable and reliable energy for Americans. https://t.co/bjv0tjTutZ
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Deeply saddened by the tragic loss of life in Colorado Springs today from senseless violence. Prayers for the victims and their families.
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From my family to yours, Happy Thanksgiving! I'm thankful for our brave troops spending the day away from their families. God bless you all.
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We are voting on a number of pieces of legislation in the House this week to push back against the President's overreaching anti-energy regulations,
It's #SmallBusinessSaturday! Colorado's 3rd District is full of unique and amazing small businesses. It's a great day to go check them out and
Saddened to hear of the senseless and tragic violence in Colorado Springs today that took at least two lives, including a police officer. Prayers
The Journal in Cortez has a great editorial today about the importance of supporting the people who support your community by shopping local: "Does
From my family to yours, Happy Thanksgiving! We have so much to give thanks for in this great nation. I'm thankful for our brave men and women