Washington, D.C. – On Tuesday, the House of Representatives passed H.R. 6, the so-called American Dream and Promise Act of 2019. The legislation, which combines two Democrat sponsored immigration measures, does not address the ongoing and growing crisis at the U.S.-Mexico border and offers amnesty to millions illegally present in the United States. Representative Mike Kelly, R-Pa., voted against the measure.
America’s immigration system is a mess, and the ongoing crisis on our southern border is evidence of that fact, said Kelly. Unfortunately, House Democrats are more focused on providing amnesty to illegal immigrants and political messaging than serious immigration reform that makes it easier to come to America legally and secures our border. We have been sitting at the table waiting for them to come to us with legitimate proposals. Instead, we were presented with legislation that prioritizes illegal aliens over Americans and legal immigrants.
Though H.R. 6 is being sold as a permanent fix for persons eligible for the Obama era program Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA), it would in fact offer legal status and a path to citizenship to significantly more people than the original program. The bill lacks appropriate safeguards against fraud in the application process and would allow a significant number of criminals to obtain green cards because of how it defines criminal activity. Democrats rejected multiple Republican amendments to fix loopholes that would allow illegal immigrant criminals legal status, including misdemeanor firearms convicts.
Rep. Kelly supports legal immigrants, including the over one million people the United States admits each year. He has called for legislation that provides the necessary resources to secure our southern border, ends chain migration, ends the visa lottery program, and makes it easier to enter legally and obtain U.S. citizenship.
Washington, D.C. – Today, the U.S. House of Representatives passed H.R. 1994, the SECURE Act, legislation aimed at improving Americans’ ability to save for their retirement. Congressman Mike Kelly, R-Pa., co-authored the bill with Ways and Means Committee Chairman Richard Neal, D-Mass., Ranking Member Kevin Brady, R-Texas, and Wisconsin Democrat Ron Kind.
Today is a good day for American workers and businesses, said Kelly. The bill we passed today makes long-necessary reforms that will help future retirees prepare for the golden years and make it easier for businesses to help in that effort. To attain financial security in retirement, workers must start investing and saving as early as possible. The SECURE Act will help them do that, and I am grateful to my colleagues for coming together on a bipartisan plan to give Americans more tools to build wealth for their future. When we work together, great things happen for the American people.
The SECURE Act is the mix of several pieces of legislation, the bulk of which were written by Kelly during prior Congresses. Those bills include the Retirement Enhancement and Savings Act (RESA), the Rightsizing Pension Premiums Act, the Family Savings Act, the 529 OPTIONS Act, and more. Kelly has long-fought to help employees and small businesses make retirement planning and professional development easier for employees.
Key Provisions in the SECURE Act:
These and other provisions will help businesses provide for their employees, and their employees to provide for their future. The bill passed on a broad bipartisan basis. The Senate is poised to pass the bill tonight and send it to President Trump for signature.
Washington, D.C. – On Friday, the United States Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) announced that it awarded a contract for sand nourishment at Presque Isle State Park, a long-necessary project for which Congressman Mike Kelly has been a staunch advocate. He issued the following statement following the announcement:
Western Pennsylvania is celebrating the fact that Presque Isle State Park will receive the sand it so desperately needs to remain the national treasure we know it to be. Presque Isle is an integral part of Erie’s identity, critical to Northwestern Pennsylvania’s economy, and a natural resource that provides recreational opportunities for locals and tourists alike. Thank you to President Trump and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers for working with me to get this done for my constituents and the millions who visit Erie’s pristine and iconic shores each year.
USACE issued the contract to PPW Builders, Inc., which will begin placing 68,000 cubic yards of sand between Beach 5 and Beach 10 in June 2019.
Excerpt from USACE Press Release
This contract award will provide the nourishment needed to help stabilize Presque Isle, while providing ample recreational opportunity to the public,” said Lt. Col. Jason Toth, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Buffalo District. “Buffalo District greatly appreciates the continued support from the public and the advocacy of Representative Kelly to ensure these projects can occur, supporting the needs of the American people.
Washington, D.C. – Following the announcement by President Donald Trump that the United States will leave the United Nations Arms Trade Treaty (ATT), Congressman Mike Kelly (R-Pa.) released the following statement:
President Trump has once again demonstrated his commitment to the safety and security of America and its allies by withdrawing from the United Nations Arms Trade Treaty. I requested that he consider withdrawing in March 2018, and I am pleased that he decided to do so. I have long-been concerned that this treaty does not expressly recognize the fundamental right of individuals to keep and bear arms, and that it hinders the U.S. from fulfilling its commitment to key allies such as Taiwan and the State of Israel. These two factors, among others, are particularly problematic when considering the United States is consistently asked to pay far more to administer this treaty than any other participating nation. Why should the United States participate in and pay for a treaty that neglects the fundamental rights of its citizens, threatens its defense industrial base, and treats its right to transfer arms on an equal footing with totalitarian regimes?
President Obama signed the ATT in September 2013. The United States has not significantly contributed to the treaty because Congress has repeatedly passed legislation that makes funding contingent on ratification by the Senate, which did not occur. Kelly has consistently opposed the ATT as written and agreed to by the Obama Administration, and is grateful that President Trump has asked the Senate to end the ratification process.
It was bill language written by Kelly that prevented the funding. His leadership on the issue is most recently outlined in letters to the House Appropriations Committee and President Trump in March 2018.
Have you ever wondered just how significant the Great Lakes are to Erie, western Pennsylvania and the United States as a whole? They make up the largest grouping of freshwater lakes and comprise approximately one-fifth of the world’s fresh water.
These lakes provide 30 million Americans with drinking water, support more than 1.5 million jobs, offer recreational opportunities that draw millions of tourists each year, and are home to thousands of plant and animal species. The Great Lakes are an American national treasure.
The states of Minnesota, Wisconsin, Illinois, Indiana, Ohio, Michigan and New York, and our very own Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, know this on a personal level. We have an economic and cultural interest in making sure the Great Lakes are clean, safe and open for recreation and commerce.
Lake Erie, which gave its name to our beloved city of Erie, is a major part of our economy and identity. It is home to a substantial number of Pennsylvanians and the activities on our local beaches and in our local waters create thousands of jobs. Millions of Americans and foreign tourists visit Presque Isle State Park and the broader Erie region each year, and they bring their dollars with them to spend right here at local businesses.
Lake Erie is more than a source of revenue, however. It is the greatest of the Great Lakes and a source of pride for us. That is why I am a strong supporter of the Great Lakes Restoration Initiative (GLRI), a plan to correct a series of threats to the future viability of the Great Lakes so they can remain the lifeblood of so many American communities, including Erie.
The problems are significant but not insurmountable if we press on. Right now, numerous federal agencies, including the U.S. Geological Survey, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency are doing great work to stem the negative impact of invasive species like the Asian carp, harmful algal blooms, loss of habitat for native species, pollution, beach closures and more.
The Congressional Great Lakes Task Force, a bipartisan group of lawmakers who are committed to supporting those efforts and of which I am a member, is united behind the GLRI programs. I have led and signed on to numerous letters requesting that the House Committee on Appropriations fully fund them in this government funding cycle.
Congress appropriated $300 million for GLRI programs last year. President Donald Trump’s Fiscal Year 2020 budget request to Congress proposed significantly less for next year. The GLRI is an investment in the future of the Great Lakes region and should be funded to at least the same level as Fiscal Year 2019, if not more. We made that clear to the president, and he now agrees that full funding should be a priority. A cut to these programs threatens one of our nation’s most valuable natural resources and the future economic well-being of western Pennsylvania and the broader Great Lakes region.
Though not funded through GLRI money, another issue of critical importance to Erie County over the decades has been the erosion of the beaches at Presque Isle State Park and the constant need to replenish them with sand. Last November, the United States Army Corps of Engineers announced it would allocate $1.5 million for that project, which was a significant victory in our fight to restore our part of Lake Erie’s coastline and protect the state park for the enjoyment of future generations of Americans. I asked that President Trump help us get this done, and he granted that request.
I will continue to be a staunch advocate of Lake Erie and the GLRI. I will also continue to encourage the administration to recognize why the Great Lakes and the programs to protect and restore them are so important to us.
Lake Erie is part of who we are as western Pennsylvanians. The Great Lakes are part of our American identity. As a Pennsylvanian and an American, I’m proud to stand with those who are fighting to make the Great Lakes even greater.
This piece, written by Congressman Kelly, originally appeared in the Erie Times NewsRead More
Washington, D.C. – Today, the House of Representatives passed H.R. 1957, the Taxpayer First Act, the first IRS reform legislation since 1998, which would recast IRS as a service-first agency to better serve American taxpayers. The bill, which passed unanimously, is now headed to the Senate for consideration.
Representatives Mike Kelly, R-Pa. and John Lewis, D-Ga. co-authored the legislation. Kelly, the top Republican on the Oversight Subcommittee, lauded the bipartisan cooperation by members of the Ways and Means Committee over the years to put this legislation together.
Today, Republicans and Democrats set aside their differences and passed legislation together that will greatly benefit U.S. taxpayers. The IRS is one of few federal agencies that Americans, whether they like it or not, will have a constant relationship with throughout their lives. The bill we passed today will make sure that relationship is built on trust rather than fear, and that taxpayers’ rights are safeguarded when they interact with the agency. To protect the integrity of our voluntary tax compliance system, the IRS should be a resource for Americans, not their adversary, said Kelly.
The Taxpayer First Act, if enacted, will require the IRS to alter several of its current practices to focus on service in addition to making it more accountable to Congress and the public.
Washington, D.C. – On Tuesday, the House Ways and Means Committee held a Markup on two pieces of legislation co-authored by Congressman Mike Kelly (R-PA). Both bills were reported to the whole House of Representative on a unanimous vote.
The Taxpayer First Act, a landmark IRS reform bill was written by Kelly and Oversight Subcommittee Chairman John Lewis (D-GA). The SECURE Act, a culmination of Kelly’s Family Savings Act and the Retirement Enhancement and Savings Act, was co-authored by Kelly, Chairman Richard Neal (D-MA), Ranking Member Kevin Brady (R-TX) and Representative Ron Kind (D-WI).
On committee passage of the bills, Kelly issued this statement: The bipartisan support these bills have received is a notable win for all Americans and a proud moment for this committee. Today was a giant step toward two long-standing goals of mine: to reform the tax code to help and incentivize Americans to prepare for retirement, and to reform the IRS for the first time in decades to reorient its mission as a service-first agency. I am grateful to my colleagues, particularly Chairman Neal, Ranking Member Brady, Chairman Lewis, and Representative Kind for their dedication to achieving these goals for our constituents and the nation. This is what we were sent to Washington to do, and I am proud of what the committee has done today.
The Taxpayer First Act and the SECURE Act are now headed to the House floor. The bipartisan support signals they will be considered soon and are likely to pass the chamber.
Washington, D.C. – On Friday, Congressman Mike Kelly (R-PA) introduced the Secure Act, a bipartisan bill to enhance the ability of Americans to save for their retirement. The bill was co-authored by Kelly, Ways and Means Committee Chairman Richard Neal (D-MA), Ranking Member Kevin Brady (R-TX), and Representative Ron Kind (D-WI).
Separately, Kelly and Kind introduced the Providing Retirement Security to Workers in Small Businesses, Cooperatives, and Service Organizations Act of 2019. This bill would allow multiple employer pension plans, which would help small business owners offer retirement plans to their employees, and would provide premium relief for rural co-ops and charities to dedicate more of their scare resources to their core missions.
I am proud to be a co-author of these bills that will help Americans achieve financial security in retirement, said Kelly. I am grateful to Chairman Neal, Ranking Member Brady, and Representative Kind for working with me to offer Americans more options to build wealth. Allowing workers to keep more of their hard-earned money and encouraging them to invest in their futures is a win-win for retirees and their families. As we plan to mark up the Secure Act next week in the Ways and Means Committee, I also urge Chairman Neal to consider marking up our multiple employer pensions legislation. Together, these measures will greatly enhance the ability of U.S. workers to financially plan for their golden years.
The Ways and Means Committee plans to mark up the Secure Act next week, clearing the way for its consideration by the whole House of Representatives. Kelly and Kind are encouraging the committee to also consider the second bill. This is a proud moment for Kelly, who authored many of these provisions during the 115th Congress as part of the Family Savings Act and the Retirement Enhancement and Savings Act. Retirement security has and will continue to be among his top policy priorities.
Washington, D.C. – Today, House Ways and Means Subcommittee on Oversight Chairman John Lewis (D-GA) and Ranking Member Mike Kelly (R-PA) introduced the Taxpayer First Act, a bill to reform the Internal Revenue Service (IRS).
The IRS, which was last altered in 1998, is in desperate need of a refocused mission. This legislation aims to create a “service-first” agency and repair the trust it has lost from the American people.
The IRS is one of the few federal agencies that has a constant relationship with Americans throughout their lives, said Kelly. Unfortunately, over the years that relationship has become one of fear and distrust. We can restore Americans’ faith and trust in the IRS by ensuring that the agency is acting as an advocate and meeting the needs of taxpayers.
Upon the release of the bill, Kelly and Lewis issued a joint statement with full committee Chairman Richard Neal (D-MA) and Ranking Member Kevin Brady (R-TX):
The House Ways and Means Committee and the Senate Finance Committee have carefully and thoughtfully developed this legislation over several years, after numerous hearings and roundtables, in a bipartisan, bicameral manner. The goal of the legislation is to modernize the IRS, putting taxpayers first. The commonsense provisions in this bill will protect low-income taxpayers, provide sensible enforcement reforms, and ensure the IRS provides taxpayers and small businesses the assistance they deserve.
The Taxpayer First Act would fundamentally change the taxpayer’s experience by bringing the IRS into the 21st century. Among other reforms, it would completely restructure the agency to improve efficiency, bolster cyber security, and require it to develop a customer service plan based on private sector best practices. It would also establish an independent appeals board to ensure that taxpayers receive a fair hearing during disputes.
The bipartisan, bicameral support for the bill suggests a significant likelihood that it will be enacted.
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Mike Kelly was born in Pittsburgh and raised in Butler, PA, where he has lived for the past 53 years. After graduating from Butler High School in 1966, Mike attended the University of Notre Dame on a football and academic scholarship. After college, Mike moved back to Butler to work at Kelly Chevrolet-Cadillac, Inc., a company founded by his father in the early 1950s. Mike took ownership of the dealership in the mid-1990s, expanding its operations to include Hyundai and KIA franchises.
Mike currently employs over 100 people from the region, and is a leader in the local and national automotive industry. Mike has served as Chairman of the Hyundai Eastern Region Dealer Council, Vice Chairman of the Hyundai National Dealer Council, and has served on the boards of the Chevrolet Dealers Advertising Association of Pittsburgh and the Cadillac Consultants of Western Pennsylvania. In addition, Mike was Secretary and Treasurer of the Hyundai initiative “Hope on Wheels,” which has donated over $58 million to childhood cancer research institutions nationwide.
Mike was a Butler City councilman, and has sat on the boards of several local and civic organizations, including the Housing Authority of Butler County, the Redevelopment Authority of Butler County, and the Moraine Trails Council of Boys Scouts of America. In recognition of Mike’s extensive volunteer and charitable work, Catholic Charities gave Mike the Mary DeMucci Award and the Mayor of Butler designated October 26, 2001 as “Mike Kelly Day” for his commitment to his hometown.
Dedicated to improving education, Mike founded the Butler Quarterback Club and The Golden Tornado Scholastic Foundation, which provides unique and innovative educational programs for students in the Butler Area School District. Mike and his wife, Victoria, a former elementary school teacher, also established the Mary McTighe Kelly Creative Teaching Grant for elementary educators and the Lighthouse Foundation’s One Warm Coat Program, which helped collect over 500 winter coats for students in need in the Butler community.
Mike and Victoria have four children: George III, Brendan, Charlotte and Colin; and are the proud grandparents to George IV, Vivian, Elizabeth, Helena, Elaina, Maeve and Victoria. Mike’s family and friends were with him on January 5, 2011, when Mike was sworn into office as the U.S. Representative of the 3rd Congressional District of Pennsylvania. Mike looks forward to representing the interests and voicing the concerns of the 3rd District, especially as they relate to Mike’s work on the House Committee on Ways and Means.
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