MEMO: Dave Loebsack’s History of Achievements Benefiting the People of Iowa

To: Reporters, Editors and Interested Parties
Fr: Jennie Johnson, Campaign Manager, Loebsack for Congress
RE: Dave Loebsack’s History of Achievements Benefiting the People of Iowa
Date: September 24, 2014

As members have now left Washington to go back to their home states for a 6 week sprint to Election Day, leaving many important issues left on the table, it is no wonder that the 113th Congress will be remembered as the “Do Nothing Congress”. While this Republican-led Congress has not accomplished much to speak of, Dave Loebsack has been able to overcome the Washington gridlock and advance many of his priorities that will benefit the people of Iowa.

Below is a list of the many achievements that the Congressman has had during this 113th Congress.

Growing Iowa’s Economy
Dave secured the passage of large portions of his SECTORS Act as part of the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act.  The SECTORS Act will ensure workers have the training they need to secure good jobs and employers have access to a workforce with the skills that are needed for them to expand, boost our economy, and out-compete the global competition. It uses Iowa community colleges and local industry as models for how to create and retain good-paying jobs in rural areas while growing local industry. This is part of Dave’s strong focus on growing Iowa’s and our country’s manufacturing sector to create good jobs and grow the economy.

Improving Child Care for Working Families
As Ranking Member of the Subcommittee on Early Childhood, Elementary and Secondary Education, Dave helped author and pass the Child Care Development Block Grant (CCDBG) reauthorization. CCDBG provides funds to states to help low-income families pay for child care while a parent works or is in an educational or job training program. As the son of a single mother, Dave knows firsthand how important affordable, quality child care is for working families. This bipartisan, bicameral legislation makes long needed updates and improvements to CCDBG that will promote healthy child development and enhance quality and safety. It will allow parents and guardians to work or attend school with the peace of mind of knowing their children are safe and well cared for.

Supporting Our Seniors
Dave was successful in restoring funding to Meals on Wheels and other senior nutrition programs when they endured huge cuts during sequestration. Having been raised in part by his grandmother, Dave knows how critical supports like Meals on Wheels are to seniors struggling to make ends meet on fixed incomes. Dave led a group of nearly 50 bipartisan members in this effort, and was able to secure the restored funding.

Cleaning Up Congress
There is no doubt that the American people have lost faith in those who were elected to represent them. That is why Dave has fought to hold Congress accountable for its actions. Dave introduced a bipartisan House Resolution that would have reversed a decision made by the Ethics Committee to eliminate the requirement for Members to disclose privately funded travel on their yearly Financial Disclosure Statements. Because of Dave’s efforts, the Ethics Committee reversed their initial proposal and maintained the original reporting requirements. Dave has also introduced legislation to cut Member’s pay for the first time since the Great Depression and permanently ban all Member’s from becoming lobbyists.

Strengthening Rock Island Arsenal
Dave introduced, and passed through the House of Representatives, the Installation Arsenal Reutilization Act. This bill provides the Arsenal with another necessary tool to partner with the private sector to more efficiently utilize the Arsenal’s resources and workforce, and to attract more private industry to the Quad Cities area. As Co-Chair of the Depot, Arsenal and Industrial Facilities Caucus, Dave has fought to ensure that Rock Island Arsenal maintains the workloads necessary to be productive. In the 2014 National Defense Authorization Act, Dave included an amendment that would push the Department of Defense to consider arsenals when deciding how to fulfill a manufacturing requirement. This effort has already resulted in additional projects coming to Rock Island Arsenal.

Protecting Rock Island Arsenal’s Workforce
Dave successfully inserted language into the 2014 and 2015 National Defense Authorization Act to push the Department of Defense to streamline how they award work between the civilian workforce and private sector companies.  Dave pushed to ensure that jobs that are inherently governmental are going to the civilian workforce at Rock Island Arsenal, and are not being outsourced to the private sector.

Farm Bill
For over two years, Dave fought tooth and nail to get the Agricultural Act of 2014, better known as the Farm Bill, signed into law. This long-term farm bill is essential for farmers and rural communities to be able to invest and plan for the future. The new farm bill makes important reforms, gives our farmers strong risk management tools, strengthens our rural communities, and creates job well beyond the farm.

Renewable Fuels Standard
We all know the importance of biofuels to Iowa’s economy, which is why Dave has been leading the fight in Congress against the EPA to reverse its announced Renewable Fuels Standard proposal. The proposal that the EPA announced last fall is flat-out unacceptable and would have dire consequences to Iowa’s economy. As part of his efforts to overturn the proposal, Dave led the first meeting of Members of Congress with EPA Administrator Gina McCarthy and also took his opposition directly to the White House in meetings with Senior White House officials.

Production Tax Credit
As a longtime supporter of the Production Tax Credit (PTC), Dave has led the way in Congress to ensure it is renewed to give the wind energy sector the stability it needs. The PTC has helped the still growing wind energy industry employ 80,000 Americans, including thousands of Iowans. Just recently Dave introduced HR 5559 – the Bridge to a Clean Energy Future Act. This legislation would extend the Production Tax Credit for wind energy through 2016. Living in Iowa, Dave understands how important renewable energy is to our state, to our country’s future, and to our economy.

National Guard
Dave worked in a bipartisan manner to protect the Iowa National Guard from experiencing severe budget cuts and force structure reductions. As a Member of the House Armed Services Committee, Dave worked with Congressman Joe Wilson to stave off these cuts by creating an independent commission that is tasked to look at the total force structure of the Army. Without this Commission, the Iowa National Guard would have lost over 100 Guardsmen and Reservists, and would have lost helicopters that have been vital in responding to natural disasters and emergencies.

Fighting for Our Troops
As a parent of two children in the military, Dave knows firsthand the strain put on military families. Dave worked with his Republican colleagues on the House Armed Services Committee to reverse the President’s 2015 budget submission which called for a reduction of Earned Housing Benefits for military families, forcing them to pay an additional 5% out of pocket.  Dave also inserted language into the National Defense Authorization Act that would expand person-to-person mental health screenings to at least one screening during each 180-day period a servicemember is deployed.

Water Resources Reform and Development Act
While it took are too long, Dave’s work to strengthen our nation’s water infrastructure was finally signed into law. The Water Resources Reform and Development Act (WRRDA) authorizes Corps of Engineers funding for improvements to ports, waterways and projects tied to flood protection, drinking water, dams and levees and environmental restoration. This bill also contained Dave’s legislation to protect Cedar Rapids from future flooding.

Introduced the Re-Fuel Act
In order to give American’s more choice at the gas pump, Dave introduced legislation that would establish a grant program through the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) to invest in renewable and alternative fuel infrastructure. The Renewable Fuel Utilization, Expansion and Leadership (Re-FUEL) Act (HR 4051) will help create new and retrofit existing infrastructure, including pumps for biofuels and hydrogen, tanks, piping and electric vehicle chargers.