Kevin Cramer

Kevin Cramer

NORTH DAKOTA

MEDIA ADVISORY: CRAMER TO HOST TOWN HALL WITH FISH AND WILDLIFE SERVICE IN DEVILS LAKE

2017/09/21

DEVILS LAKE, ND – Congressman Kevin Cramer will host a Q & A Town Hall with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS) in Devils Lake tomorrow to give local farmers the opportunity to ask questions about the Wetland Easement Program and wetland mapping. The event will take place from 9:00 to 11:00 AM in the Basement Meeting Room of the Ramsey County Courthouse. Press is welcome to attend.

Time: September 22 from 9:00 to 11:00 AM

Location: Ramsey County Courthouse, 524 4th Avenue NE, Devils Lake, ND

 

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Cramer Announces Mobile Office Hours in Fessenden and Carrington on September 28

2017/09/20

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Congressman Kevin Cramer has scheduled mobile office hours in Fessenden and Carrington on Thursday, September 28.

Mobile office hours allow constituents to receive assistance with casework from the Congressman’s staff. “Many issues are raised through various forms of contact with me and my offices. Having members of my staff in Fessenden and Carrington allows more time for those with concerns and questions to explore solutions with people in a position to help,” said Cramer. “I realize it's not always easy or even possible for people to get to my district offices. Mobile office hours brings these services closer to constituents.”

Individuals from the Fessenden and Carrington areas are encouraged to stop by the mobile office for help with veterans and Social Security benefits, Medicare billing problems, immigration issues, military records or medals, or for assistance with any other federal agency.

 

Thursday, September 28

 

City Hall—10:30am-12pm

Community Room

602 Railway St. S

Fessenden, ND 58438

 

Carrington City Library—1-2:30pm

87 8th Ave. N

Carrington, ND 58421

 

Contact Cramer’s Constituent Services Representative, Emily Custer, with any questions at Emily.Custer@mail.house.gov or by phone at 701-738-4880.

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CRAMER JOINS ENERGY COALITION IN REINTRODUCING CARBON CAPTURE ACT

2017/09/18

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Congressman Kevin Cramer joined a coalition of 30 House members to originally cosponsor the Carbon Capture Act, sponsored by Rep. Mike Conaway (R-TX).

H.R. 3761, the Carbon Capture Act, incentivizes carbon capture and sequestration (CCS) projects a technology that, according to Conaway’s office, can capture up to 90 percent of the carbon dioxide emissions produced from the use of traditional fuel methods in electricity generation and industrial processes.

“With our coal, oil, and gas industries in North Dakota, we’re in a perfect spot to develop these technologies to increase energy production, jobs, and security,” said Cramer. “The opportunity to lead the way in these new technologies is something North Dakota is very excited about.”

The Conaway bill improves the existing tax credit for the capture and utilization or storage of carbon dioxide to support the ongoing development of clean coal technologies. The bill compliments Congressman Cramer’s CO2 Regulatory Certainty Act to harmonize Internal Revenue Services and Environmental Protection Agency regulations.

“Basin Electric supports the efforts of Congressmen Conaway, Cramer and others to advance carbon capture projects in America with the introduction of the Carbon Capture Act. We believe clean coal technology coupled with carbon capture projects holds the key to an energy future that involves all sources of energy. While domestic, abundant, and reliable, the coal industry is evolving and recognizes the need to lower carbon emissions. Through our efforts at Dakota Gasification Company’s Great Plains Synfuels Plant, we’ve captured more than 35 million tons of CO2 for enhanced oil recovery. This legislation expands the tax credit to better foster opportunities for private industry and government to work together, innovate, and advance further carbon capture projects. This country has accomplished great things when industry and human ingenuity are facilitated, encouraged, and unleashed. This is a pivotal time for our nation’s energy future, and this legislation represents an important step in the right direction.” – Paul Sukut, CEO and General Manager, Basin Electric

“Many power plants in North Dakota (and elsewhere) are close to oil fields that could use carbon dioxide for enhanced oil recovery. Appropriate incentives could facilitate CO2 recovery from power plants, which would provide an environmental benefit to the electric power sector and would encourage more thorough recovery of the oil resource.” – Rick Lancaster, Vice President and Chief Generation Officer, Great River Energy

Cramer questioned witnesses at an Energy and Commerce Subcommittee on Energy Hearing this past week emphasizing how critical it is to our modern economy and society to maintain a reliable electric system. He highlighted concerns with early shutdown of baseload generation, like coal, impacting reliability and increased costs to ratepayers. View Cramer’s questioning here.

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Cramer Announces Public Schedule

2017/09/18

Bismarck, N.D. – Congressman Kevin Cramer announced his public schedule for this week. All times are local.

Monday, September 18

Meeting with Bruce Walker

*Closed Press

Integrity Viking Funds

9:00am-10:00am

 

Meeting with Joan Morris

*Closed Press

10:00am-11:00pm

 

Meeting with Mike Schwab

*Closed Press

ND Pharmacists Association

1:00pm-2:00pm

 

Tuesday, September 19

Petroleum Marketers Association

*Closed Press

8:00am-9:00am

Bismarck, ND

 

Roundtable with Energy Leaders

*Closed Press

12:30pm-1:45pm

Bismarck, ND

 

Point of View with Chris Berg

6:30pm-7:30pm

Bismarck, ND

 

Wednesday, September 20

Scott Hennen: What’s on your Mind?

10:00am-11:00am

Listen Live

 

Greater North Dakota Chamber CEO Roundtable

*Open Press

11:25am-11:40am

Mandan, ND

 

The Rob (Re)Port - WDAY

1:30pm-2:00pm

Listen Live

 

NRCS Meeting

*Closed Press

3:00pm-4:00pm

Bismarck, ND

 

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Thursday, September 21

JT Show - KNOX

10:05am-10:25am

Listen Live

 

Rick Jensen – KHND

10:40am-10:55am

Listen Live

 

Bobcat Manufacturing Facility Celebration

*Open Press

11:30am-2:30pm

Gwinner, ND

 

Friday, September 22

Town hall with Landowners & U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service

*Open Press

9:00am-11:00am

Devils Lake, ND

 

Intel, Surveillance, and Reconnaissance Group (ISRG) Building Ribbon Cutting

*Open Press

2:30pm-3:30pm

Fargo, ND

 

Saturday, September 23

2017 Walk to End Alzheimer's

*Open Press

10:00am-11:00am

Bismarck, ND

 

Contact Adam Jorde for all state and national press inquiries.

 

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Cramer Announces House Passage of All Fiscal Year 2018 Appropriations Bills

2017/09/14

 

Recording: Audio 1, Audio 2, Audio 3

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Congressman Kevin Cramer joined a majority of his colleagues today in passing a comprehensive appropriations bill combining all 12 spending bills required to fund the government for Fiscal Year (FY) 2018.

The Make America Secure and Prosperous Appropriations Act, 2018 combines the text of the every appropriations bill for FY 2018. It is the first time all appropriations bills have passed the House of Representatives through the standard appropriations process since FY 2006. “The House is proving to the American people that it can function as a governing body without kicking the can down the road,” said Cramer. “From subcommittee through full committee and on to the House floor, every appropriations bill has been thoroughly debated, amended, and passed in full view of the American public – the way our governing body is supposed to function.”

The House of Representatives:

  • Held 12 appropriations subcommittee markups
  • Held 12 appropriations full committee markups
  • Held member debate for 65 plus hours in full committee markups on funding legislation
  • Considered 444 Amendments considered throughout the committee process (subcommittee & full committee)
  • Nearly 1,000 Amendments were offered for consideration on the House floor and debated in the House Rules Committee

As the only branch holding the purse strings for our federal government, Congress is charged with considering and passing 12 appropriations bills each year to fund the federal government. Through the appropriations process, Congress is able to enact spending reforms and reprioritize funding for our country. “Passing every appropriations bill annually shouldn’t be considered an accomplishment, but in recent decades, Congress has failed to consistently achieve this goal,” said Cramer. “Now that the House has done its work, it’s time for the Senate to avoid passing another continuing resolution, and instead, have an open debate on all 12 appropriations bills. Senators need to take this responsibility seriously. If necessary, Leader McConnell should change the archaic Senate parliamentary rules to allow simple-majority votes on appropriations legislation.”

A continuing resolution is an extension of funding to all branches of government at the current year funding levels. Oftentimes, Congress will pass continuing resolutions when they have not come to an agreement on government funding before the end of the fiscal year, which is on September 30. Congress will also pass ‘omnibus’ bills, which frequently pass at the end of the year with little deliberation or debate from members. “This is the problem,” said Cramer. “We need to make continuing resolutions and large omnibus bills put together behind closed doors the rare exception, not the norm. Congress needs to be a transparent body, and I’m going to keep fighting with leadership to prove we can do just that. America will be better off for it.”

In the funding bill passed today, Cramer successfully spearheaded several policy provisions specific to North Dakota including:

  • Allowing the state of North Dakota to permit trucks weighing up to 129,000 pounds on the two federal interstates within the state’s borders. 
  • $250,000 available to help prevent blackbird damage to crops in the Northern Great Plains. 
  • Language urging the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers to adopt a definition of “surplus water” which excludes the “natural flows” of the Missouri River in the Corps rule entitled “Use of U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Reservoir Projects for Domestic, Municipal & Industrial Water Supply” is included.  This definition would respect North Dakota’s rights to appropriate its water resources without undue influence from the federal government.  Congressman Cramer previously worked to prevent the Corps from charging surplus water fees for such natural flows.  
  • Language to direct the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to only purchase waterfowl production area easements in the State of North Dakota if they’re consistent with State law.  In response to issues with these easements in North Dakota, the State recently passed a law preventing them from exceeding 50 years in duration.  Congressman Cramer continues to work towards improving the wetland easement program for landowners and farmers.

North Dakota specific highlights for the bill include:

  • Increase of $120 million to the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers to be used for flood protection projects such as the Fargo-Moorhead Diversion. 
  • $400,000 to continue investigating flood control activities for the Souris River Basin in North Dakota.
  • $10 million is provided for environmental infrastructure projects which have assisted small communities in North Dakota to improve their water and wastewater systems.
  • Includes over $25 million for operation and maintenance of Army Corps facilities in North Dakota.  
  • Support for the Trump Administration’s withdrawal of the 2015 Waters of the U.S. rule.  Congressman Cramer is supporting H.R. 1261, the Federal Regulatory Certainty for Water Act, to support rewriting a new clearer definition which respects state and private property rights.
  • $25 million to continue support for the solicitation of two large-scale pilot projects focused on transformational coal technologies, such as Project Tundra in North Dakota.
  • $15 million to expand external Department of Energy activities to develop separation technologies for the extraction and recovery of rare earth elements and minerals from U.S. coal sources.
  • Encourages university-based research to improve oil recovery, the use of produced fluids for geothermal energy, and the exploration of technologies to curtail flaring and venting in shale formations.
  • Prevent funds from being used to implement the Bureau of Land Management’s “Waste Prevention, Production Subject to Royalties, and Resource Conservation” rule.
  • Prohibits funds from being used to enforce the EPA methane rule.
  • Prohibits funds from being used to implement the Social Cost of Carbon rule. 
  • Prohibiting the fiduciary rule from going into effect.

Other Bill highlights include:

Physical Barrier Construction - $1.6 billion

  • Provides $1.6 billion to secure our Southern border, including bollards and levee improvements, meeting the full White House request

Agriculture - $20 billion

  • $250,000 available to the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) use of fixed-wing aircraft to reduce blackbird damages to crops in the Northern Great Plains
  • $2.8 billion for Agricultural Research, including the Agriculture Research Service and the Agriculture Food Research Initiative Grant Program. 
  • SNAP reduced by $4.87B from FY 17 to reflect declining participation
  • Prevents waste in school lunch programs
    • Schools demonstrating economic hardship can seek a temporary waiver from whole grain standards
    • Schools can serve low-fat flavored milk
    • No further reduction in sodium standards

Commerce, Justice, Science - $54 billion

  • The bill funds DOJ at $29 billion, an increase of $349 million above the fiscal year 2017 enacted level. These investments will give federal law enforcement tools to thwart crime and terrorism, and bring criminals to justice.
  • Grant Programs – The bill includes a total of $2.2 billion for various state and local law enforcement assistance grant programs.  Within this amount, funds are increased for the highest-priority grant programs, including $527 million for the Violence Against Women account (an increase of $46 million), $500 million for Byrne Justice Assistance Grants (an increase of $104 million), and $220 million for the State Criminal Alien Assistance Program (an increase of $10 million).
  • The bill also maintains funding for various other important grant programs at their current levels. This includes Adam Walsh Act grants ($20 million), DNA Initiative grants ($125 million), the Reduce Sexual Assault Kits Backlog grants ($45 million), Second Chance Act grants ($68 million), and Missing and Exploited Children grants ($73 million).
  • Anti-Opioid Abuse – Opioid abuse is a national epidemic, killing more people than car crashes each year according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The bill includes $103 million for programs to help stem this abuse – the full amount authorized by the Comprehensive Addiction and Recovery Act of 2016. This includes funding for activities such as drug courts, treatment, and prescription drug monitoring.
  • Trade Enforcement – The bill includes $15 million for the Trade Enforcement Trust fund, which is the full amount authorized by the Trade Facilitation and Trade Enforcement Act of 2015. The bill also funds the International Trade Commission at $92.5 million, which is a $1 million increase above the enacted level, and increases Enforcement and Compliance at the International Trade Administration to the President’s request of $88.5 million.
  • Continues a prohibition on the transfer or release of Guantanamo detainees into the U.S.;
  • Continues various existing provisions related to firearms, such as a prohibition on the implementation of the UN Arms Trade Treaty, and making four of these provisions permanent;
  • Prohibits unauthorized reporting and registration requirement on consumers purchasing multiple rifles or shotguns;
  • Prevents settlement money from going to activist groups by prohibiting the Justice Department from entering into civil settlement agreements in which a defendant is required to make a donation to a third party;
  • Combats cyberespionage by requiring agencies to conduct supply chain review before procuring sensitive information technology systems;

Homeland Security - $44.3 billion

  • Customs and Border Protection (CBP) – The bill contains $13.8 billion in discretionary appropriations for CBP – an increase of $1.6 billion above the fiscal year 2017 enacted level. These resources ensure our borders are protected by putting boots on the ground, improving infrastructure and technology, and helping to stem the flow of illegal goods both into and out of the country. Within this total, the legislation includes:
  • $1.6 billion for physical barrier construction along the Southern border – including bollards and levee improvements – meeting the full White House request;
  • $100 million to hire 500 new Border Patrol agents;
  • $131 million for new border technology;
  • $106 million for new aircraft and sensors; and
  • $109 million for new, non-intrusive inspection equipment.
  • Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) – The bill provides $7 billion for ICE –$619.7 million above the fiscal year 2017 enacted level. Within this total, the legislation includes:
  • $185.6 million to hire 1,000 additional law enforcement officers and 606 support staff;
  • $2 billion – an increase of $30 million above the requested level – for domestic and international investigations programs, including efforts to combat human trafficking, child exploitation, cybercrime, visa screening, and drug smuggling;
  • $4.4 billion for detention and removal programs, including:
  • 44,000 detention beds, an increase 4,676 beds over fiscal year 2017;
  • 129 Fugitive Operations teams; and
  • Criminal Alien Program operations, including the addition of 26 new communities to the 287(g) program, which partners with local law enforcement to process, arrest, and book illegal immigrants into state or local detention facilities.
  • Cybersecurity and Protection of Communications – To combat increasingly dangerous and numerous cyber-attacks, the bill includes a total of $1.8 billion for the National Protection and Programs Directorate to enhance critical infrastructure and prevent hacking. Within this amount, $1.37 billion is provided to help secure civilian (.gov) networks, detect and prevent cyber-attacks and foreign espionage, and enhance and modernize emergency communications. Funds are also included to enhance emergency communications capabilities and to continue the modernization of the Biometric Identification System.

Labor, Health and Human Services, Education - $156 billion

  • Reducing Harmful Red Tape – The legislation includes several provisions designed to help U.S. businesses create jobs and grow the economy by reducing or eliminating overly burdensome government regulations, including:
  • A new provision prohibiting enforcement of the “Fiduciary” rule, which places significant new regulatory burdens on retirement investment advisers.
  • A continuation of provisions providing flexibility in the H-2B program, reducing regulatory requirements and ensuring that employers that comply with program requirements have access to the temporary, seasonal workers their businesses depend on.
  • The continuation of a provision exempting insurance claims adjusters from overtime requirements of the Fair Labor Standards Act in areas that have been hit by a major disaster.
  • National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) – The bill includes $249 million for NLRB – a decrease of $25 million below last year’s enacted level. The legislation includes a provision that prohibits the NLRB from applying its revised “joint-employer” standard in new cases and proceedings;
  • Special Education – The bill includes $12.2 billion for IDEA special education grants to states, an increase of $200 million over the fiscal year 2017 enacted level, which will maintain the federal share of special education funding to states.
  • Student Support and Academic Achievement State Grants – The bill includes $500 million, $100 million above the fiscal year 2017 level, for grants that provide flexible funds to states and school districts to expand access, improve school conditions, and increase the use of technology.
  • Pell Grants – The maximum Pell Grant award is maintained at $5,920, funded by a combination of discretionary and mandatory funds. The bill rescinds $3.3 billion of the total $8.5 billion Pell surplus. The Administration’s budget proposed a rescission of $3.9 billion.
  • Impact Aid – The bill provides over $1.3 billion for Impact Aid, an increase of $5 million above the current enacted level.
  • Charter Schools – The bill increases funding for charter schools by $28 million, to a total of $370 million.
  • Increases funding for the National Institutes of Health by $1.1B – this includes $1.8B in Alzheimer’s Research
  • Combats opioid epidemic by continuing funding of $500M in the 21st Century Cures Act
  • Increases IDEA funding by $200M
  • Contains zero funding for Planned Parenthood, saving $330M in taxpayer money
  • Prohibits enforcement of the DOL Fiduciary Rule

Transportation, Housing, and Urban Development - $56.5 billion

  • Includes Cramer language to allow the state of North Dakota to permit trucks weighing up to 129,000 pounds on the two federal interstates within the state’s borders. Earlier this year, the North Dakota legislature passed HB 1255 unanimously in both the House and Senate. It was signed into law by Governor Burgum in April. The ND bill allows the North Dakota Department of Transportation to adopt rules to increase truck weights to 129,000 pounds on the two federal interstates and several major state highways within the state. Cramer’s language, if included in the final spending package, would grant North Dakota the authority to raise the weight limits to harmonize weights with Montana, South Dakota, Idaho, and Manitoba and Saskatchewan. Read Congressman Cramer’s written testimony here.
  • Provides robust funding for the FAA at $16.6B, an increase of $153M.
  • Provides $2.2B for our railroads, including $500M to our federal-state grant programs
  • Sustains Section 8 and Public and Native American Housing at $27.7B
  • Improve interstate commerce by affirming a uniform hours of service trucking requirement

Foreign Operations - $47.7 billion

  • Fully funds our $3.1B Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with Israel, supporting our vital ally in the Middle East.
  • Expands the Mexico City Policy to protect the sanctity of life around world
  • Nearly $360M for antiterrorism programs to counter ISIS and other terror groups. Additionally, this bill continues the counter-narcotics efforts in Latin American countries.

Financial Services - $20.2 billion

  • Provides $848M for the Small Business Administration
  • Reins in the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau and peels back harmful regulations
  • IRS: cuts almost $150M from the IRS budget
    • Prohibits the IRS from targeting groups for regulatory scrutiny based on ideological beliefs
    • Prohibits the IRS from determining church exemptions unless the IRS Commissioner has consented and Congress is notified

Interior and Environment – $31.4 billion

  • Cuts funding for the EPA by $534 million below FY17 levels which totals nearly 30% reduction to EPA’s overall budget since 2010.  Supports the President’s proposal to reshape the EPA workforce.
  • Authorizes the withdrawal of the Waters of the United States (WOTUS) rule.  Congressman Cramer is supporting H.R. 1261, the Federal Regulatory Certainty for Water Act, to support rewriting a new clearer definition which respects state and private property rights.
  • Prevent funds from being used to implement the Bureau of Land Management’s “Waste Prevention, Production Subject to Royalties, and Resource Conservation” rule.
  • Prohibits funds from being used to enforce the EPA methane rule. 
  • Prohibit funds from being used to implement the Social Cost of Carbon rule. 
  • Language to direct the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to only purchase waterfowl production area easements in the State of North Dakota if they’re consistent with State law.  In response to issues with these easements in North Dakota, the State recently passed a law preventing them from exceeding 50 years in duration.  Congressman Cramer continues to work towards improving the wetland easement program for landowners and farmers.

Energy and Water Development - $37.6 billion

  • Funds national security efforts, including nuclear weapons programs, energy research and development, and water infrastructure.  The bill totals $37.56 billion – $209 million below the fiscal year 2017 enacted level and $3.65 billion above the President’s budget request.
  • Funds Army Corps of Engineers at $6.16 billion, an increase of $120 million above the fiscal year 2017 enacted level, to invest in our nation’s export capabilities through harbor and inland waterway enhancements and to increase resiliency to flood events. 
    • $400,000 is included to continue investigating flood control activities for the Souris River Basin in North Dakota.
    • $10 million is provided for environmental infrastructure projects which have assisted small communities in North Dakota to improve their water and wastewater systems.
    • Includes over $25 million for operation and maintenance of Army Corps facilities in North Dakota.  
    • Responds to concerns with the Corps review of non-federal alterations of civil works projects (Section 408) by providing $8.5 million to the program – a $5.5 million increase from FY 2017.
    • Language urging the Corps to adopt a definition of “surplus water” which excludes the “natural flows” of the Missouri River in the Corps rule entitled “Use of U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Reservoir Projects for Domestic, Municipal & Industrial Water Supply” is included.  This definition would respect North Dakota’s rights to appropriate its water resources without undue influence from the federal government.  
  • Provides over $28 million for Bureau of Reclamation facilities in North Dakota.  An additional $43.8 million is included nationally for rural water projects, including the continued buildout of drinking water infrastructure for Native American tribes in North Dakota.    
  • Provides $9.6 billion for DOE energy programs – a decrease of $1.7 billion below the fiscal year 2017 enacted level – to encourage U.S. competitiveness and advance “all-of-the-above” energy dominance.
    • Provides $25 million to continue support for the solicitation of two large-scale pilot projects focused on transformations coal technologies, such as Project Tundra in North Dakota.
    • $15 million to expand external DOE activities to develop separation technologies for the extraction and recovery of rare earth elements and minerals from U.S. coal sources.
    • Encourages university-based research to improve oil recovery, the use of produced fluids for geothermal energy, and the exploration of technologies to curtail flaring and venting in shale formations.

Department of Defense - $658.1 billion

  • Boosts base funding for the Department of Defense by $68.1 billion to continue rebuilding our military
  • Includes $73.9 billion in Overseas Contingency Operations funding to ensure our troops have the training and equipment needed to maintain our military superiority
  • Fully funds the authorized 2.4% pay raise – the largest military pay increase in 8 years
  • Keep our military on the cutting edge of defense technology by investing $84.3 billion in research and development ($11.6 billion above FY17) and $149.9 billion in equipment and weapons procurement ($31.2 billion above FY17)

Military Construction and Veterans Affairs - $88.8 billion

  • Provides the highest level of funding ever for the Department of Veterans Affairs - $78.3 billion, an increase of $3.9 billion above FY17
    • Supports medical care for 7 million VA patients, including mental health care services, suicide prevention activities, traumatic brain injury treatment, opioid abuse prevention, and homeless veterans services
  • Helps rebuild our Armed Forces, increasing funding by 25% for the construction of critical military infrastructure that keeps our troops prepared and healthy (10.2 billion total)

Legislative Branch - $3.58 billion

  • Member Pay Freeze – The legislation freezes pay for Members of Congress, preventing any pay increases in fiscal year 2018.
  • Capitol Police – The bill funds the Capitol Police at $422.5 million, an increase of $29.2 million above the fiscal year 2017 enacted level. This will fund critical safety and enhanced security functions for all Members, staff, and visitors of the Capitol Complex, and maintain public access to the Capitol and its office buildings.
  • Increased funding is included to address concerns related to security and protection traumatic shooting earlier this month. This includes $7.5 million to enhance protection for increased training, equipment and technology-related support items.
  • Library of Congress – The legislation provides $648 million for the Library of Congress, an increase of $16 million above the fiscal year 2017 enacted level. This increase will allow for information technology modernization within the Library, the Copyright Office, and the Congressional Research Service (CRS).  Language is included to allow public access to all non-confidential CRS reports.
  • Government Accountability Office (GAO) – The bill contains $568 million in funding for the GAO, $450 thousand above the fiscal year 2017 enacted level, to continue GAO’s critical oversight work providing Congress with accurate, nonpartisan reporting of federal programs and tracking of how taxpayer dollars are spent.

 

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CRAMER: Criminal Alien Gang Member Removal Act Passes House

2017/09/14

Recording: Audio

WASHINGTON D.C. – Congressman Kevin Cramer supported legislation passed in the House of Representatives today, which ensures that alien gang members are kept off our streets.

The Criminal Alien Gang Member Removal Act (H.R. 3697) bars known alien gang members from coming into the United States and allows U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) officers to deport them if they’re participating in gang activity. Additionally, the bill ensures criminal alien gang members are not eligible for immigration benefits, such as asylum, special immigration juvenile status, and temporary protected status, which are reserved for those around the world most in need of protection.

“Protecting Americans is my number one priority and it makes me sick every time I hear of an innocent person losing their life to gang activity,” said Cramer. “We will not tolerate violent gangs like MS-13 taking advantage of our immigrations laws to bring drugs, violence, and other illegal activities to our communities. The Criminal Alien Gang Member Removal Act guarantees criminal alien gang members are not allowed through our borders and makes it easier for ICE to remove them.”

U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement has found that a majority of gang members in transnational gangs are foreign-born nationals. Under current law, it is not possible to deport such gang members unless they are convicted of an independent crime. In Fiscal Year 2016, over 2,000 criminal aliens removed by ICE were suspected of participating in gang activity. ICE also made more than 8,000 gang-related criminal arrests, leading to more than 2,600 convictions.

MS-13 originated in Los Angeles in the 1980s, and currently participates in at least 40 states across America and the District of Columbia. According to the Department of Justice, the notoriously violent MS-13 gang has roughly 10,000 members inside the United States and more than 40,000 globally. Most members are originally from Central America.

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Cramer Sends Letter to Cohn, Brady, Hatch Stressing Tax Reform Priorities For Farmers

2017/09/13

WASHINGTON D.C. – Congressman Kevin Cramer sent a letter today to several key decision makers for tax reform to stress priorities for farmers across North Dakota.

The letter, which was sent to Chief Economic Advisor and Director of the National Economic Council Gary Cohn, Chairman of the House Ways and Means Committee Kevin Brady, and Chairman of the Senate Finance Committee Orrin Hatch requests they take into account the unique characteristics of family farms across North Dakota when considering tax reform.

Specifically, Cramer points to maintaining interest deductibility, the stepped-up cost basis, and elimination of the estate tax as the three core tax priorities for North Dakota farmers.

“Since a vast majority of farmers and ranchers rely on debt to finance their operations, eliminating the interest deduction would raise the cost of doing business for farmers and ranchers and make it more difficult for them to acquire the land and equipment needed to feed our hungry world,” Cramer says in the letter.

As the lone-Representative for the state of North Dakota and a close ally of President Trump and the Trump Administration, Cramer continues to advocate for tax reform in order to grow our economy and allow North Dakotans to keep more of their hard-earned money.

View the full letter here

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CRAMER: Statement Remembering the Victims of September 11, 2001

2017/09/11

WASHINGTON D.C. – Congressman Kevin Cramer issued the following statement in remembrance of the lives that were lost on September 11, 2001:

“On this day 16 years ago, America witnessed one of the most tragic events in our nation’s history. The evil and hatred displayed changed us forever, and terrorists believed we would cower in fear at the horrible atrocities committed by them. They were wrong. Where they believed America was weak, we showed strength. Where they believed Americans would run from catastrophe, heroes ran toward it. Where they believed Americans would splinter apart, we forged a deeper love and bond with our fellow neighbors than ever seen before.

Those who lost their lives that terrible day will always be remembered, but their lives were not lost in vain. Through our will, compassion, and steadfast love for everything that is the United States of America, we will always send a message to evil around the world that you will not hurt us, you will not break us, and you will never destroy the God-given rights every individual has to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.”

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CRAMER: Standing Rock Sioux Tribe Receives VA Grant to Construct All Nations Veterans Cemetery

2017/09/08

Quote: Video Statement

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Congressman Kevin Cramer announced the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe will receive a $4.9 Million grant to construct the All Nations Veterans Cemetery near Fort Yates.

The grant, which is being provided by the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) National Cemetery Administration, will be used to for the construction of a main entrance, an administration building, a maintenance building, roads, an assembly area, a committal shelter, 128 pre-placed single depth crypts, 28 standard full casket sites, 12 cremated remains gravesites, landscaping, and supporting infrastructure. The project will develop eight acres and serve 2,264 tribal Veterans and their families.

“This national cemetery will bring recognition and honor to many patriots, and some pride to the families of loved ones who have fought for, and in many cases, gave their lives for our country and for the world’s freedom,” said Cramer. “The funding for this cemetery to be built near Fort Yates is really long overdue, it’s a long time incoming, and I’m really grateful and pleased that the Trump Administration approved their application.”

According to a notice provided to Cramer’s office, since 1980, the program has awarded grants totaling more than $714 million to establish, expand, improve, operate and maintain 107 Veterans cemeteries in 47 states and territories including tribal trust lands, Guam, and Saipan. These VA funded Veteran cemeteries provided more than 36,000 burials in 2016. The closest national cemetery is Black Hills National Cemetery in Sturgis, South Dakota, which is 238 miles away. The closest grant-funded cemetery is North Dakota Veterans Cemetery in Mandan, North Dakota, which is 65 miles away. VA’s Veterans Cemetery Grants Program is designed to complement VA’s 135 national cemeteries across the country.

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CRAMER: STATEMENT ON PASSAGE OF BILL FOR HURRICANE RELIEF, RAISING DEBT CEILING, AND FUNDING GOVERNMENT

2017/09/08

WASHINGTON D.C. – Congressman Kevin Cramer issued the following statement after U.S. House of Representatives today passed legislation providing hurricane disaster relief, raising the debt ceiling, and funding the government through December 8:

“I voted for the Senate bill that provides $15 billion in disaster aid for Hurricane Harvey, and funds the government at current levels and extends the debt ceiling through December 8th of this year. President Trump has asked for this legislation in order to clear the deck for Congress to pass our highest priority, comprehensive tax reform. During this time, I will work with my colleagues to establish a more disciplined approach to our fiscal responsibilities. Our citizens deserve a more transparent and predictable process when handling their money.”

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Contact Information

1717 Longworth HOB
Washington, DC 20515
Phone 202-225-2611
Fax 202-226-0893
cramer.house.gov

Kevin Cramer was elected to the U.S. House of Representatives on November 6, 2012. He serves on the House Committee on Energy and Commerce, which has the broadest jurisdiction of any committee in Congress. Cramer is assigned to three subcommittees: Communications and Technology, Energy, and Environment. In November 2016, Cramer was elevated to the influential House Republican Steering Committee – as the Small State Representative. The Steering Committee determines all committee assignments and chairmanships.

He is Co-Chairman of the House Rural Broadband Caucus, which develops policy solutions addressing Rural America’s digital divide, and the Northern Border Caucus, which fosters continued growth in the relationship between the United States and Canada. He is also a founding Chair of the Congressional Kid’s Safety Caucus.

He is North Dakota’s only member of the House of Representatives. Cramer has made constituent outreach a top priority, describing interacting with the public as “the best part of public service.” According to Legistorm, the Capitol Hill government issues website, since becoming a Member of Congress, Cramer has held more town halls than any other Member.

Cramer has had a distinguished career in public service. In 1991, he 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 from 1993 to 1997, then as State Economic Development & Finance Director from 1997 to 2000. From 2000 to 2003, he was Executive Director of the Harold Schafer Leadership Foundation, which connects emerging leaders from the University of Mary in Bismarck with community business leaders. In 2003, then-Governor John Hoeven appointed Cramer to the Public Service Commission, and in 2004 he was elected to the position.

As North Dakota Public Service Commissioner, Cramer helped oversee the most dynamic economy in the 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 America’s energy security is integral to 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 Bachelor of Arts degree from Concordia College in Moorhead, Minnesota, a Master’s degree in Management from the University of Mary in Bismarck, North Dakota, 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 nine-year-old son, Abel; one granddaughter, Lyla; and three grandsons, Beau, Nico and Chet.


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