Steve Stivers

Steve Stivers

OHIO's 15th DISTRICT

Statement from Rep. Stivers Regarding the Manchester Attack

2017/05/23

The following statement can be attributed to Congressman Steve Stivers (R-OH) regarding the attack at the Manchester Arena:

“In light of the tragic attack in Manchester last night, I want to extend my prayers to the victims and their families, and my thanks to the first responders.  These senseless acts of violence should only strengthen our determination in the fight against terrorism.”

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Rep. Stivers Introduces Bill to Expand Student Loan Repayment Benefits

2017/05/19

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, Representative Steve Stivers (R-OH) and Representative Terri Sewell (D-AL) introduced the Student Loan Debt Relief Act, a bill which will help employer student loan repayment programs attract more graduates and help borrowers pay fewer taxes on their education. This legislation will allow employer student loan repayment programs to be considered a non-taxable fringe benefit, raising the cap on tax free educational assistance to $10,000. Additionally, it doubles the maximum deduction of student loan interest from $2,500 to $5,000 and allows more young professionals to benefit from these programs.
 
“Students and recent graduates often face difficult financial hardship paying for their student loans with entry level jobs. There is no doubt that student loan debt can be a major obstacle in building a solid financial future,” Stivers said. “While this is just one step to addressing the cost of higher education, I am proud to support a stronger student loan repayment program to relieve the burden on the next generation.”
 
“We cannot allow student loan debt to keep the American dream out of reach for our youngest generation,” said Rep. Sewell. “Recent graduates joining the workforce face many challenges, and student debt can be one of the most difficult. The Student Loan Debt Relief Act takes an important step forward by giving young people a better opportunity to work towards financial security.”
 
Current law allows employers to provide student loan assistance and repayment benefits for their employees, and employers are then able to write off those costs as part of doing business. However, the IRS classifies these programs as taxable income on the employees who are then taxed on that benefit as additional income. This bill just eliminates the classification to allow employees to receive this benefit without the burden of additional taxes on their paychecks, allowing them to save more of their hard-earned pay.
 
Borrowers are also currently allowed to deduct their interest payments made on their student loans up to $2,500 each year when they file their taxes.  Many graduates spend years paying off their interest, through a myriad of repayment plans which help lower monthly payments, but can extend the life of repayment and ultimately their total balance. This legislation seeks to double the amount of interest that borrowers can deduct when filing their taxes to a maximum of $5,000 each year, helping students save more of their money to help start their lives and pay off their loans sooner.
 
Additionally, current law limits who can benefit from this deduction by setting an income ceiling of $80,000 for an individual filers and $160,000 for couples filing jointly to be eligible for interest deduction. This bill will raise these amounts to $150,000 and $250,000, respectively, to allow young professionals, doctors, lawyers and high tech industry workers – who often have the largest loan amounts despite a higher income – to qualify for this deduction.
 
According to the U.S. Department of Education, the average Class of 2016 graduate has $37,172 in student loan debt, up six percent from last year. 
 
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Police Week: Honoring the Service and Sacrifice of Law Enforcement Officers

2017/05/17

On October 1, 1962, President John F. Kennedy signed into law a measure to officially designate May 15 as National Peace Officers Memorial Day, and the week in which that date falls as National Police Week. During this week, people across the United States take time to remember and honor law enforcement officers who made the ultimate sacrifice in the line of duty protecting our communities.

This week reminds us how great of risk law enforcement officers take to keep us safe. It also reminds us that we must ensure we support law enforcement officers with both the resources to protect our communities and the laws to discourage violence against police officers.

That’s why, in advance of National Police Week, I signed on as a cosponsor of the Back the Blue Act. This legislation would create a new federal crime for killing, attempting to kill, or conspiring to kill a federal judge, law enforcement officer or federally funded public safety officer. In the event that the crime results in a death, the mandatory sentencing requirement would be 30 years.

This bill also creates a new federal crime for assaulting a federally funded law enforcement officer. This law would include escalating penalties and mandatory minimum sentencing based on the injury and weapon used.

Under this law, law enforcement officers are also given expanded self-defense and Second Amendment right by permitting them to carry firearms into facilities and jurisdictions where it would otherwise be prohibited. Additionally, this would open up the grant funding to help police departments continue to strengthen the relations with the community they serve in.

Law enforcement officers play a critical role in keeping our communities safe every day. The Back the Blue Act is just one way we can give back to those who protect us by ensuring the law is behind them to keep them safer. As we consider legislation in Congress affecting law enforcement officers, I will continue to Back the Blue.

It is my honor to serve you in the House of Representatives, and I invite you call my Washington, D.C. office at (202) 225-2015, Hilliard office at (614) 771-4968, Lancaster office at (740) 654-2654, or Wilmington office at (937) 283-7049 if I can be of assistance with any issue facing the federal government. I also encourage you to subscribe to my email newsletter at stivers.house.gov.

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Steve Stivers is a Member of Congress from Ohio’s 15th Congressional District
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Statement from Rep. Stivers Regarding the Appointment of Special Counsel

2017/05/17

The following can be attributed to Congressman Steve Stivers (R-OH) regarding the appointment of Robert Mueller as special counsel:

"Robert Mueller is a man of the highest integrity and intellect. If there's anyone who knows how to run a thorough investigation, it's him. Between his work and the work of the congressional investigations in both the House and Senate, the American people can rest assured that no stone will be left unturned. We need to follow the facts wherever they lead."

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Stivers and Speier Reintroduce Legislation to Advance Energy Technology

2017/05/08

WASHINGTON, DC – Last week, Representatives Steve Stivers (R-OH) and Jackie Speier (D-CA) reintroduced the Energy Tax Fairness Act, a bipartisan bill which will help manufacturers and businesses reduce energy costs, mitigate pollution, and bring much needed parity to the Tax Code for participants in the distributed energy generation market.

Specifically, this legislation will encourage the development of linear generators, a low-cost and highly efficient technology that can produce electricity from almost any fuel source, including clean natural gas and biomass. Currently, U.S. companies developing this technology are at a competitive disadvantage because linear generators do not qualify for an investment tax credit under section 48 of the Tax Code. The tax credit is available to many other existing distributed generation solutions, such as solar, fuel cells, microturbines and combined heat and power systems.

“I support an all-of-the-above energy strategy to encourage the production and development of both traditional and renewable sources of energy,” Stivers said. “Our Tax Code plays an important role in allowing new and innovative sources of energy to come to market, and this bill will allow companies to compete on a level playing field. I am proud to reintroduce this legislation that will create jobs, enhance energy security and lower costs for Americans.”

“My district in the San Francisco Bay Area is at the forefront of developing creative solutions that prove we don’t have to choose between jobs and sustainable energy - we can have both,” Speier said. “This bill ensures that the emerging technology of linear generators will have the ability to create jobs and compete on the open market without the fear of being unfairly punished by the tax code. Both energy security and environmental safety are key to our children’s future.”

Linear generation technology can be used meet large- and small-scale needs, benefiting in particular commercial and industrial users, public sector facilities, like schools and hospitals, and residential homes. Additionally, these generators provide power that can run uninterrupted, even in an electrical grid outage.

The Energy Tax Fairness Act will begin to roll back the harmful provisions of the Tax Code that picks winners and losers, giving this technology an equal footing in the developing energy market.

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The CHOICE Act: Opportunities, Growth, and Accountability

2017/05/02

Today, the Financial Services Committee started the mark-up process for the Financial CHOICE Act, an important step in the effort to bring choices and opportunity to the American people.  The regulations that resulted from the Dodd-Frank Act in the wake of the financial crisis have caused more harm than good for consumers, sometimes even preventing some from getting loans for cars or homes, while failing to guard against future crisis. 

We believe that there is a better way forward, one that can provide Americans with more opportunities, give small businesses the access to the capital they need to succeed, and bring more accountability to our financial system.  That is why I am proud to support the CHOICE Act. 

Included in the CHOICE Act is a provision based on a bill that I introduced in the 114th Congress, the SAFE Transitional Licensing Act.  This provision makes a minor change to the Secure and Fair Enforcement for Mortgage Licensing (SAFE) Act to require states to issue transitional licenses to individuals who were employed by a financial institution and are a registered loan originator.  This allows loan originators to have a smooth employment transition between bank and non-bank entities. For independent mortgage lenders, the CHOICE Act will give them the opportunity for job mobility, rather than have their hands tied by Washington’s red tape.

An additional provision included in the CHOICE Act is designed to help small businesses by enhancing the ability of Business Development Companies (BDCs) to finance small and middle market businesses.  The middle market sector has an outsized impact on economic growth and job creation in the United States.  But partly because of Dodd-Frank, traditional banks are exiting the middle market, leaving these important job creators without the financing they need to operate and expand their businesses.  My bill would help fill this financing gap by providing a modest increase in the amount BDCs can borrow, enabling them to provide significantly more capital to small and middle market companies.   

Finally, the CHOICE Act also brings additional accountability and oversight of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB).  Based on another piece of my legislation from the 114th Congress, the CHOICE Act includes a provision that will require an independent Inspector General for the CFPB.  Government accountability is more important than ever, and it is important that we take the necessary steps to ensure the CFPB is accountable to the American people. 

Our economy has suffered under the stifling regulations of Dodd-Frank, and consumers have paid the price.  I look forward to working with my colleagues on the Financial Services Committee, and the rest of Congress to pass the CHOICE Act and deliver the opportunity, access, and accountability the American people deserve.

Steve Stivers is a Member of Congress from Ohio’s 15th Congressional District.

 

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Stivers Reintroduces the Veterans Dog Training Therapy Act

2017/05/01

WASHINGTON – Last week, Congressman Steve Stivers (R-OH) and Congressman Tim Walz (D-MN) reintroduced legislation to address Posttraumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) in the veteran community.  The Veterans Dog Training Therapy Act would establish a pilot program for veterans so they may address their PTSD through therapeutic dog training and handling.

“For many veterans that I have met, the opportunity to work with a service dog has made a huge difference in their lives,” Stivers said. “As a nation, we have a moral obligation to give back to those who have put their lives on the line for the safety of this country, and to provide them with meaningful therapies to help them deal with both physical and mental service-related issues.  Training therapy dogs can make an impact for our wounded warriors, and I’m excited to reintroduce this bill.”

The Veterans Dog Training Therapy Act would establish a pilot program at three to five V.A. facilities.  These facilities would connect veterans to local therapeutic dog training organizations, which would be responsible for the dogs’ housing and care.  Once trained, the service dogs would be given to physically disabled veterans to help them with daily activities.  The bill’s benefit to veterans is two-fold: the partnership with the dogs provides comfort and an outlet for veterans coping with PTSD, and dogs who have successfully completed the program will improve the quality of life for disabled veterans – allowing veterans to help other veterans.

Preliminary research by Kaiser Permanente has shown that veterans who have these service dogs show fewer symptoms of PTSD and depression, have better interpersonal relationships, a lowered risk of substance abuse and better overall mental health.

In the 114th Congress, H.R. 359, the Veterans Dog Training Therapy Act, was passed by the House of Representatives.

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Statement from Congressman Steve Stivers on the Financial CHOICE Act

2017/04/28

Regarding the Financial CHOICE Act, the following can be attributed to Congressman Steve Stivers (R-OH):

"The regulations stemming from Dodd-Frank have caused great harm to consumers – including preventing some Americans from getting loans to buy a car or house – while doing little to protect us from future crisis," Stivers said. "The Financial CHOICE Act will reduce regulations and encourage economic growth and opportunity. I am proud to support this legislation."

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Repaying Loans, Relieving Student Stress

2017/04/27

$1,407,200,000,000.  That is the current total of student loan debt in this nation. Trillions of dollars are weighing down on over 70 percent of college students and graduates.  Over 15 percent of those have either defaulted or have been delinquent in repaying their loans.  Seven out of 10 college students admit that their personal finances cause stress or worry. 

Even when I was going through school, this was a concern.  In fact, while earning my undergraduate degree, I made the decision to join the Army National Guard, partly in order to lift some of that burden.  Now, as the average debt per student borrower is approaching $28,000, there is no doubt that we need to work to address this issue.

Aside from the negative affects on the individual, the staggering student loan crisis has an impact on our nation’s overall economy.  According to a Gallup poll, one in five recent graduates says that they are hesitant to start a new business because of their student debt.  Debt is hindering the potential of our nation’s greatest resource: the next generation. 

For my constituents that are still pursuing their degrees, or who are recent graduates, I know that this is a particularly stressful problem as they often find themselves in difficult financial situations with student loans and entry level jobs.  Student loan debt can be a major obstacle in building a solid financial future. 

April is Financial Literacy Month, and as co-Chair of the Financial Literacy Caucus, I am committed to encouraging financial literacy among students, while finding ways to help relieve some of this debt. 

I will soon introduce legislation that will help this portion of the population by making it easier for employers to provide student loan programs.  My legislation will also increase the amount that can be deducted by borrowers on their interest paid.
 
This is just one small step, but I am committed to working with my colleagues to help alleviate this problem. I also wanted to highlight some resources that are available to students attending the colleges or universities in the 15th District.  These on-campus resources can help you take the first steps towards financial wellness. 

If you are a Buckeye, consider making an appointment with Scarlet and Grey Financial.  Their peer coaches can help provide you more information about debt repayment, as well as financial goal setting and budgeting.

For the Bobcats, Ohio University’s Office of Student Financial Aid and Scholarships provides a great resource, GradReady.  The online platform provides informational videos and activities to help you manage your finances and set you up for financial success.

Ohio Christian University also offers online resources, and has launched Financial Aid TV (FATV).  FATV is a 24-hour online library that includes videos on topics like FASFA, financial literacy, loans and grants, and military benefits. 

Lastly, if you are a student at Wilmington College, consider stopping by the Student One Stop Center.  Their full time staffers are eager to help you with FAFSFA, loan applications, or entrance or exit loan counseling.

For students and recent graduates, improving financial literacy and economic education is crucial.  An understanding of financial decisions can make a huge difference as they enter the workforce and begin to build a successful future, and student debt should not stand in their way. 

If you, or someone you know, is having difficulty with student loans, please feel free to contact me in my Washington, D.C. office at (202) 225-2015, my Lancaster office at (740) 654-2654, my Hilliard office at (614) 771-4968, or my Wilmington office at (937) 283-7049.  I also encourage you to follow me on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and through my e-newsletter at www.stivers.house.gov.

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Representatives Stivers and Beatty Reintroduce Bill to Incentivize Assistance for Homeless Former Servicemembers

2017/04/27

Washington, DC – Today, Representatives Steve Stivers (R-OH) and Joyce Beatty (D-OH) re-introduced the Housing Our Military Servicemembers (HOMeS) Act, which would add “former servicemembers” as a subpopulation eligible for rehousing incentive payments through the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD).  By codifying former servicemembers directly into HUD’s homeless assistance statutes, the agency can incentivize and reward housing grantees that help get all former members of the military off the streets. 

The bill also directs HUD to identify and report to Congress on a strategy to eliminate homelessness among former servicemembers who are not eligible for homelessness assistance offered by the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA).

“Our veteran population is particularly vulnerable to homelessness, and Congress has a responsibility to act on this problem,” Stivers said. “This bill recognizes the needs of all former servicemembers and assists housing grantees that are working hard to find these individuals the homes they deserve.  While the HOMeS Act will not solve the homelessness problem, it is an important first step.”

“Every servicemember deserves a place to call ‘Home Sweet Home,’ unfortunately many still do not,” Beatty said. “We can and must do more to help homeless servicemembers get back on their feet.” Beatty continued, “That is why I am proud to team up with Congressman Stivers to introduce the Housing Our Military Servicemembers Act which takes an important step in ensuring that all of our nation’s former servicemembers have a safe place to call home.”   

In 2009, the VA announced its effort to end homelessness among veterans.  Since that time, communities around the country, including Columbus, have made significant progress through the hard work of community shelter leaders, non-profits and government agencies.  However, many individuals who wore the uniform remain ineligible for the primary VA homeless assistance programs, like HUD-VASH. 

Additionally, little data is available on this non-VA eligible subpopulation and the specific challenges they face.  The HOMeS Act reporting requirements would help shed light on this subpopulation and ensure they are not left behind in the effort to eliminate homelessness among individuals who wore their country’s uniform.

Housing grantees compete for “bonus” funding from HUD in order to help house designated subpopulations.  By altering the U.S. Code to explicitly include former servicemembers as an eligible subpopulation, the HOMeS Act will help increase their profile for HUD homeless housing incentives.
According to data provided by HUD, the agency spent approximately $133 million on incentive payments in the fiscal year 2016. Organizations who have expressed support for the legislation include the American Legion, and the Military Order of the Purple Heart, and the Enlisted Association of the National Guard of the United States (EANGUS).

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Contact Information

1022 Longworth HOB
Washington, DC 20515
Phone 202-225-2015
Fax 202-225-3529
stivers.house.gov

Raised in Ripley, Ohio, Steve Stivers learned from his mother and father the importance of family, hard work and public service, which have been the values he has carried with him through his life, whether as a student at The Ohio State University, a soldier serving overseas, as a State Senator, or as a Member of Congress.

Stivers is currently serving his third term as a Member of Congress and represents Ohio’s 15th Congressional District, which is made up of 12 counties including: all of Athens, Clinton, Fairfield, Hocking, Madison, Morgan, Perry, Pickaway, and Vinton counties, and parts of: Fayette, Franklin, and Ross counties.

Stivers is serving his third term his third term on the Financial Services Committee, which oversees the banking, insurance, real estate, public and assisted housing, and securities industries. Members who serve on the committee also work on housing and consumer protection legislation and oversee Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation, the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development and the Federal Reserve Bank.

In addition, Stivers has been tapped to serve on the Committee on Rules, which is charged with determining which bills reach the House Floor for a vote. Historically, the Committee is often known as “The Speaker’s Committee” because it was chaired by the Speaker up until 1910 and is the means through which the Speaker of the House manages the House Floor. The Committee also determines how long and under what rules the full body of the House will debate each bill.

Throughout his career, Steve Stivers has led the way supporting programs and initiatives to encourage job creation, promote economic development, and put our country’s fiscal house in order. As he wrapped up a successful first term in office, two of Stivers veterans bills, the HIRE at Home Act and TRICARE for Kids, were rolled into the National Defense Authorization Act and signed into law by the President. In his second term in office, Stivers had two bills make their way to the President’s desk. These two bills, H.R. 1391 and H.R. 4189,would re-name two postal facilities located in Ohio’s 15th Congressional District after our fallen veterans. These bills are a small measure Congress can take to honor the lives of brave service members who gave the ultimate sacrifice for our freedoms.

Prior to running for Congress, Stivers served in the Ohio Senate and before that worked in the private sector for the Ohio Company and Bank One, where he focused on promoting economic development and encouraging job creation.

A career soldier, Stivers has served 29 years in the Ohio Army National Guard and holds the rank of Colonel. He served the United States overseas during Operation Iraqi Freedom in Kuwait, Iraq, Qatar and Djibouti where he led 400 soldiers and contractors and is proud that each and every one returned home safely to the United States. Stivers received the Bronze Star for his leadership throughout the deployment.

Stivers received both his bachelor’s degree and his MBA from The Ohio State University and resides in Columbus with his wife, Karen, and children, Sarah and Sam.


Serving With

Steve Chabot

OHIO's 1st DISTRICT

Brad Wenstrup

OHIO's 2nd DISTRICT

Jim Jordan

OHIO's 4th DISTRICT

Bob Latta

OHIO's 5th DISTRICT

Bill Johnson

OHIO's 6th DISTRICT

Bob Gibbs

OHIO's 7th DISTRICT

Warren Davidson

OHIO's 8th DISTRICT

Michael Turner

OHIO's 10th DISTRICT

Pat Tiberi

OHIO's 12th DISTRICT

David Joyce

OHIO's 14th DISTRICT

Jim Renacci

OHIO's 16th DISTRICT

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