Congressman Adrian Smith (R-NE) will meet constituents of the Third District during a mobile office on Friday, June 2, in McCook.
A mobile office allows constituents to meet directly with Congressman Smith about federal issues and take advantage of the services available through his office.
Smith, who has offices in Grand Island and Scottsbluff, will hold the mobile office in McCook on Friday, June 2, at the following time and location:
Red Willow County Courthouse – Commissioners Room 502 Norris Avenue, McCook, NE 69001 11:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. (CDT)
For additional information, please contact Smith’s Grand Island office at (308) 384-3900.Read More
By the time many of you read this column, Memorial Day barbecues and road trips will be over. We will start to settle into the summer months, enjoying warm sunshine and vacations. My hope, though, is everyone will have taken time on Memorial Day to remember those who made the ultimate sacrifice so we can live freely in America – and not lose sight of our gratitude to these brave men and women throughout the year.
In April, I had the opportunity to visit with seniors at Maxwell High School. Before arriving, I stopped with two of my staff members at the Fort McPherson National Cemetery. It was a cloudy, quiet morning, and as we silently observed the rows of headstones, we were moved by the recognition of everything these great Nebraskans, and Americans, had given to our country.
We live in a dangerous world, and our military members and first responders are the heroes who keep us safe each day. On May 22, the world was again devastated by a terror attack. A suicide bomber in Manchester, England, killed 22 people and wounded more than 60. The decision to target a venue filled with women and children is unthinkable. Once again, we saw first responders rush toward danger, just as we have seen countless times in tragedies here at home.
So far this year, I have had the honor of greeting hero flights from Dawson and Hall Counties, as well as the Nebraska Vietnam Flight which brought more than 650 veterans from across our state to the nation’s capital. It is deeply moving to see these heroes receive the cheers and thanks they deserve. At the same time, we remember their fellow service members who fought beside them but did not come home.
In the week leading up to Memorial Day, we focused our efforts in the House on passing legislation to better serve those who have served our country. These bills reform the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) appeals process, enforce more accountability measures on VA scheduling, and improve access to the Adult Day Health Care program for severely disabled veterans. We also passed a bill to expand the study of innovative therapies for treating posttraumatic stress disorder.
The week prior, during National Police Week, we passed legislation to more adequately protect probation officers from violent third parties trying to harm them while performing their official duties. Additionally, we stiffened penalties for the murder or attempted murder of a state or local law enforcement officer or first responder. Under current law, only the killing of a federal officer is considered an “aggravating factor” in death penalty determinations, but we know crimes against all police officers and first responders must be deterred using the full extent of the law.
Many families in Nebraska and across the country have suffered the loss of a loved one due to the selfless decision to put others’ safety above their own. On Memorial Day and every day, we have a responsibility to honor their memory. We owe them far too much to forget.Read More
Congressman Adrian Smith (R-NE) spoke on the House floor today to commemorate 100 years of the Nebraska Farm Bureau Federation.
Mr. Speaker, I rise today to recognize the centennial anniversary of the Nebraska Farm Bureau Federation, our state’s leading and largest farm organization.
Since 1917, Nebraska Farm Bureau has been a grassroots, statewide organization led by farmers and ranchers who work to enhance and strengthen the lives of all Nebraskans.
This federation of 85 county farm bureaus has more than 61,000 member families in all 93 Nebraska counties.
For 100 years, Nebraska Farm Bureau has united our state’s farm and ranch families under a common banner – doing together what they cannot do alone.
Through the power of their grassroots policy development process, Nebraska Farm Bureau remains the trusted voice for Nebraska farm and ranch families.
This year marks the 100th anniversary of Nebraska Farm Bureau’s existence, and we congratulate the organization and all of its members on reaching this important milestone.
We are excited for what the next 100 years have in store.
Thank you, Mr. Speaker. I yield back.Read More
Nebraskans have been waiting far too long for a simpler, fairer tax code. To help them plan for the future for their families, farms, and businesses, we need to move forward on comprehensive, pro-growth tax reform.
Over the past several years, we have extensively reviewed our country’s tax policies, looking for ways to simplify compliance and lower rates by broadening the base. Since 2011, we have held more than 40 tax reform hearings on the Ways and Means Committee.
Now is the time to finally complete this necessary work. This week, we held a full committee hearing to discuss the details of our tax reform plan and stress the importance of getting this done.
We know our broken tax code is killing opportunity. Dollars which could be used by job creators to hire more workers, increase wages, and reinvest in the economy are instead flowing to the Internal Revenue Service and tax preparers. Because the tax code is so complicated and riddled with loopholes, 90 percent of taxpayers have to hire outside professionals or use computer software to help them file.
The way we tax businesses in the U.S. makes us uncompetitive with the rest of the world. Along with having one of the highest corporate tax rates among major economies, we are also the only one which taxes profits on a worldwide basis. These conditions put U.S. exporters at a competitive disadvantage.
In Nebraska, this hurts everyone from the agriculture producers helping feed the world to the manufacturers developing the equipment to help people in other countries feed themselves.
Additionally, I hear almost daily from producers and small businesses in my district about the need to eliminate the Death Tax and provide them the certainty they need to ensure they can keep their operations going, creating jobs and economic opportunity for their families and their neighbors for generations to come.
These families are not awash in cash and liquidity. Their assets are held in the land and equipment they use to make and grow, and for them the question often comes down to what assets to sell or whether they can afford to borrow to pay this tax. How they decide to handle this decision can have a very real impact on the productivity of their businesses going forward.
Our plan for pro-growth tax reform will benefit Americans at all income levels. With lower rates across the board, the Tax Foundation estimates each family would keep $4,900 more in earnings each year. By doubling the standard deduction, more than 90 percent of Americans could take it and dramatically simplify the filing process.
The plan also increases how much new businesses can immediately deduct, from equipment to machinery to buildings, so they can keep more of their startup cash and grow their operations. Additionally, it eliminates the Death Tax once and for all to protect family farms, ranches, and small businesses.
Rather than making piecemeal changes to our tax code, we need permanent reforms individuals, families, and businesses can depend on. By providing this certainty, we have the potential to drive double the economic growth we would see through short-term tax cuts.
We cannot afford to wait any longer to fix our tax code. This is the time to finally lift the burden, reclaim our country’s leadership in the global economy, and unleash greater opportunity to improve the lives of all Americans.Read More
Congressman Adrian Smith (R-NE) chaired a Ways and Means Subcommittee hearing today entitled “Opportunities for Youth and Young Adults to Break the Cycle of Poverty,” which examined innovative programs around the country helping to equip young people with the skills they need to climb the economic ladder.
“More than 5.5 million 16- to 24-year-olds in America – one in seven – are not in school and are not working,” Smith said. “This is a major contributor to the cycle of poverty and results in more people living lives of government dependency. When young people are properly equipped to pursue employment opportunities, rather than left to find their way to an unemployment or welfare office, they can not only better their own circumstances but also positively contribute to the health of our economy.
“At today’s hearing, we heard from representatives of programs built around this important mission. In my opening statement, I also highlighted The HUB in Lincoln, which hosts a 16-week hands-on program to provide youth the skills they need and then helps them find the right jobs. It is exciting to see the potential of these approaches to dramatically decrease the need for welfare programs in our country.”
Smith is a member of the Ways and Means Committee and serves as chairman of the Human Resources Subcommittee.
Click here to read Congressman Smith’s opening statement.
Click here for the full video of today’s hearing.
Click here for more information about today’s hearing, including the list of witnesses.Read More
Aetna has announced it will exit all Obamacare marketplaces in 2018, citing $700 million in losses since 2014 and leaving Nebraskans with only one insurer on the exchange. The remaining insurer, Medica, has not yet committed to selling policies on the exchange next year.
Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Nebraska, our state’s largest insurer, and UnitedHealthcare pulled out of the exchange in 2016, also citing losses in the hundreds of millions of dollars.
News outlets recently reported Nebraska Director of Insurance Bruce Ramge saying if no companies participate in the Nebraska exchange next year, it could mean people who qualify for tax credits would not get them. However, they would still have to find insurance in order to avoid Obamacare’s individual mandate penalty, which is yet another example of people being harmed through no fault of their own under this unsustainable law.
This is why we took action in the House at the beginning of May to move forward with repealing and replacing Obamacare.
Executive rulemaking created loopholes in Obamacare which allow individuals to enter and leave the insurance marketplace at any time. Coupled with the ineffectiveness of individual mandate penalties in forcing people to remain insured, premiums have continued to rise. Most Americans on the exchanges saw double-digit premium increases for 2017.
We all know people do not wait until they have an accident to obtain car insurance – this would compromise the entire risk-pooling system. The same holds true for health insurance, which is why the American Health Care Act passed by the House incentivizes people to select and maintain coverage before they need it.
Under our bill, it is illegal for anyone who remains continually insured to face any form of rate discrimination due to a preexisting condition. The bill also establishes a 63-day grace period where no one can be charged a higher rate, regardless of health status, as long as new coverage is obtained before the grace period ends.
If a policy has lapsed for more than 63 days, the individual or family returning to insurance coverage must pay a 30 percent premium penalty in the first year – and only the first year – they return to coverage. This flat penalty encourages people to stay insured while making sure those who return to the marketplace cover potential added costs in a way which does not rate them for their health conditions.
States have the option to request a waiver from certain Obamacare regulations under the American Health Care Act. Before a waiver can be granted, the state must first establish an invisible high-risk pool. This mechanism allows individuals and families to continue purchasing the same health insurance plans open to healthier consumers, but the extra costs of their health conditions are covered silently by the state-created pool to bring their premiums down to near the level of the healthier population.
Again, even if a state receives a waiver, anyone who maintains consistent insurance coverage cannot be charged more.
I firmly believe we can protect access to care for those with preexisting conditions while lowering costs for the millions of Americans currently facing premiums and deductibles they cannot afford. Passing the American Health Care Act in the House was the first step, and we will continue our work in Congress to revive the health care marketplace.Read More
Congressman Adrian Smith (R-NE) released the following statement today following Aetna’s announcement it will leave the Nebraska insurance exchange in 2018.
“Nebraskans will now only have one insurer on the exchange, forcing them into a monopoly situation,” Smith said. “When consumers do not have choices, costs go up and quality suffers. The brokenness of Obamacare continues to become more and more evident, while Nebraskans shoulder the consequences.
“This is why we took action in the House last week to move forward with repealing and replacing Obamacare. We cannot sit by and allow our country’s health insurance marketplace to collapse under this unsustainable law.”
Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Nebraska and UnitedHealthcare left the exchange in 2016.
Smith is a member of the Ways and Means Committee and its Subcommittee on Health.Read More
Congressman Adrian Smith (R-NE), in conjunction with the offices of U.S. Senators Deb Fischer and Ben Sasse, will host the 2017 Third District Service Academy Open House on Saturday, May 20, in North Platte.
This event is an opportunity for young people in Nebraska to learn more about all U.S. Service Academies and other opportunities for military service. Any Nebraska high school or college students interested in military opportunities, as well as their families, are encouraged to attend.
Third District Service Academy Open House Saturday, May 20, 2017 10:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. CDT Mid Plains Community College – South Campus 601 W. State Farm Road, North Platte, NE 69101
Representatives from the U.S. Military Academy, U.S. Naval Academy, U.S. Air Force Academy, and Army ROTC will attend to answer questions and provide information. Materials from the U.S. Coast Guard Academy will also be available.
Staff from the offices of Congressman Smith, Senator Fischer, and Senator Sasse will be at the event to answer questions about the Service Academy nomination process.
For questions about the 2017 Third District Service Academy Open House, please contact Congressman Smith’s Grand Island office at 308-384-3900.Read More
Constituents of Third District Congressman Adrian Smith (R-NE) are invited to meet with a representative of his office at mobile offices from May 16 to 24 in Falls City, Stapleton, Oshkosh, Pawnee City, Chadron, and Brewster.
At mobile offices, Third District residents can meet directly with one of Smith’s staff members about federal issues and take advantage of the services available through his office.
Smith, who has offices in Grand Island and Scottsbluff, will provide his mobile office and a staff member at the following times and locations:
Tuesday, May 16
Falls City Chamber of Commerce 1705 Stone Street, Falls City, NE 68355 1:00 p.m. to 2:00 p.m. (CDT)
Wednesday, May 17
Logan County Courthouse 317 Main Street, Stapleton, NE 69163 12:00 p.m. to 1:00 p.m. (CDT)
Monday, May 22
Garden County Courthouse 611 Main Street, Oshkosh, NE 69154 10:00 a.m. to 11:00 a.m. (MDT)
Tuesday, May 23
Pawnee County Courthouse – District Courtroom 625 6th Street, Pawnee City, NE 68420 9:30 a.m. to 10:30 a.m. (CDT)
Dawes County Courthouse 451 Main Street, Chadron, NE 69337 11:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. (MDT)
Wednesday, May 24
Blaine County Courthouse 145 Lincoln Avenue, Brewster, NE 68821 12:30 p.m. to 1:30 p.m. (CDT)
For additional information, please contact Congressman Smith’s Grand Island office at (308) 384-3900 or his Scottsbluff office at (308) 633-6333.Read More
The first 100 days of any presidential administration are carefully analyzed as a barometer for future success. If the first 100 days of the Trump administration are any indication, there is much more shaking up the status quo to come.
President Trump signed more bills into law in his first 100 days than any other since President Harry Truman. Many of these bills repealed overbearing regulations put in place by the Obama administration, including a rule forcing states to fund abortion providers such as Planned Parenthood as well as a rule which severely limited the ability of states to implement a bipartisan agreement allowing drug testing for unemployment insurance recipients.
He also kept his commitment to protect agriculture producers from the federal power grab known as the Waters of the U.S. rule, or WOTUS. This rule would have given the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) the power to dictate local land use decisions and farming practices nationwide. I was pleased to join President Trump at the White House in February when he signed an executive order directing the EPA and Army Corps of Engineers to go back to the drawing board on the rule.
Of course, perhaps the top achievement of President Trump’s first 100 days was the selection and confirmation of Justice Neil Gorsuch to the Supreme Court. During his campaign, then-candidate Trump made clear his intention to nominate a judge who could follow in the footsteps of conservative Justice Antonin Scalia. Justice Gorsuch’s prior record on the bench and his conduct in his confirmation hearings reflect these qualities.
Many days have also been dedicated to fulfilling the promise to relieve Americans from the burdens of Obamacare’s failures. The House took an important step during the first week of May by passing the American Health Care Act to repeal and replace Obamacare, but there is much more work to be done. The bill now goes to the Senate, where changes will likely be made, and then the House and Senate will come together in conference to further refine the legislation. This is all part of the process.
I have said from the beginning we will not get everything we want in one vote, but we also cannot stand by and do nothing while millions of Americans face deductibles in the tens of thousands of dollars as well as monthly premiums which used to be annual premiums. One-third of the country has only one insurance option while some Americans have no insurers remaining on the exchange. This is not sustainable or affordable health care.
The American Health Care Act maintains important patient protections while returning health insurance regulation to the states, where it belongs. It stops the federal government from forcing people to purchase health care plans they do not want and which do not meet their needs. It brings competition back to the market – and when consumers have more choices, quality goes up and costs go down. It also shifts government funding away from Planned Parenthood and toward community health centers, which outnumber Planned Parenthood facilities by about 20 to one.
There are many more issues to tackle, including comprehensive tax reform and additional health care innovations such as allowing the sale of insurance across state lines, but the new administration’s first 100 days and the days following have been a busy, productive start.Read More
2241 Rayburn HOB
Washington, DC 20515
Congressman Adrian Smith has earned praise for his leadership, hard work and dedication to Nebraska commonsense. Smith has tackled issues ranging from biofuels and other forms of domestic energy to transportation research and development to fashioning legislation promoting rural America.
Smith has consistently voted against tax increases, massive government bailouts, and was unwavering in his opposition of the misguided health care bill now creating massive uncertainty for our nation’s job creators.
Smith, a co-sponsor of the Balanced Budget Amendment and a supporter of a Congressional earmark moratorium, has earned a reputation as a solid conservative through his votes to protect the rights of gun owners, efforts to limit the scope of government, and his strong pro-life voting record.
Smith, who serves on the House Committee on Ways and Means, actively promotes access for Nebraska agriculture products in Asia, South America, and throughout the world. Nebraska’s $4 billion in worldwide agricultural exports creates $6.7 billion in additional economic activity. Smith supports trade agreements which will continue to create new opportunities for our agriculture producers and their products to keep Nebraska’s economy strong.
Smith’s assignment on the Ways and Means Committee also puts the Nebraskan on the front lines in the debate on how to create jobs, promote economic growth, and directly impact tax policy – such as the Death Tax which threatens family farms and ranches.
Smith’s also has introduced the bipartisan Small-Scale Hydropower Enhancement Act which would help stimulate the economy of rural America, empower local irrigation districts to generate revenue, and decrease reliance on fossil fuels by encouraging the use of small-scale hydropower projects.
The Gering native, whose family has called Nebraska home for six generations, was first introduced to politics by his grandfather. Prior to his election to Congress, Smith served his hometown as a member of the City Council. He then represented District 48 for eight years in the Unicameral.
He continues to reside in Gering.
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