Mike Palicz

Democrats Want to Give $3.5 Billion to Jobless Climate Activists

Share on Facebook
Tweet this Story
Pin this Image

Posted by Mike Palicz on Friday, September 10th, 2021, 3:36 PM PERMALINK

Democrats are including at least $3.5 billion in taxpayer money for the creation of a uniformed “Civilian Climate Corps” according to the House Natural Resources Committee’s portion of Democrats’ $3.5 trillion spending package.

The Civilian Climate Corps (CCC) is designed as a make-work program for unemployed youths to be placed on the government payroll, paid to lecture taxpayers on the importance of climate activism and complete vital environmental projects like digging ditches and boosting enrollees' outdoor recreation.

The Democrat proposal is an attempted revival of the New Deal-era Civilian Conservation Corps that, according to a 2020 report from the Congressional Research Service, existed as a government employment program for unemployed males aged 18-25 in which “enrollees were recruited, hired, and trained by the federal government, worked under federal supervision, lived in government-run military camps, and received stipends paid for with federal funding.”

How taxpayer dollars are spent

According to bill text, Democrats will divvy up the funding across four separate agencies for the purpose of “carrying out education and job training projects and conservation projects.” Beyond funding levels, the legislation only stipulates that no more than 2 percent of appropriations shall be used for administrative costs.

  • The National Park Service will receive $1.7 billion in funding.
  • The Bureau of Land Management will receive $900 million in funding.
  • The Fish and Wildlife Service will receive $400 million in funding.
  • The Bureau of Indian Affairs will receive $500 million in funding.

 

Biden says the goal of the program is to boost young adults’ outdoor recreation

The creation of a new CCC was included as part of President Biden’s initial infrastructure agenda, which Biden recently described as a government program designed to help “young adults find work installing solar panels, planting trees, digging irrigation ditches and boosting outdoor recreation.”

Likely Structure of Civilian Climate Corps

While details are still forthcoming, the plan is modeled off of the 21st Century Civilian Conservation Corps Act introduced by House Democrats last Congress.The legislation provides further insight into Senate Democrats' proposal, the details of which are below:

Jobs are prioritized for individuals who have already used up unemployment benefits 

According to the text of the legislation, the President shall prioritize “unemployed citizens who have exhausted their entitlement to unemployment compensation,” over other citizens still “eligible for unemployment compensation payable under any State law or Federal unemployment compensation law.”

80 percent of funding used on employment, not conservation. 

While the Biden administration claims the proposal is about conservation and addressing climate change, the model legislation mandates that 80 percent of funding is to be used just on the salaries of staff.

“Not less than 80 percent of the funds utilized pursuant to paragraph (1) must be used to provide for the employment of individuals under this Act.”

Taxpayer-funded housing, clothing, and feeding of Climate Corps members

According to the legislation, taxpayers would be responsible for paying the cost of Climate Corps members’ housing, clothing, feeding, allowance, and medical expenses. Nothing screams good-paying jobs like an “allowance” from the government. Here it is straight from the bill’s text:

“The President may provide housing for persons employed in the Civilian Conservation Corps and furnish them with such subsistence, clothing, medical attendance and hospitalization, and cash allowance, as may be necessary, during the period they are so employed.”

Taxpayer-funded transportation to “work” for Climate Corps members.

Not only will the government provide food, clothing, housing, and an allowance, it will also pick up members of the Climate Corps and drive them to work for them. 

"The President may provide for the transportation of persons employed in the Civilian Conservation Corps to and from the places of employment."

Allows President Biden to seize private property through land condemnation.

President Biden would be empowered to seize public land deemed necessary to construct projects authorized under the bill.

“The President, or the head of any department or agency authorized by the President to construct any project or to carry on any public works under this Act, may acquire real property for such project or public work by purchase, donation, condemnation, or otherwise.”

Based on a failed 1930’s program that housed “employees” in military camps.

The effort is reportedly an attempt by the Biden administration to revive a long-defunct jobs program created in 1933 as part of the New Deal and similarly titled the Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC). In 1937, shortly after the CCC’s creation, Congress elected to phase out funding for the program, officially ending the CCC in 1942. The CCC appears to be the very first New Deal program defunded by Congress.

CCC was extremely accident-prone.

It turns out taking untrained youths and asking them to perform manual labor in the wilderness is a dangerous idea. “Given the nature of the work (“most of which consisted of manual labor”) and the inexperience of most enrollees, accidents were inevitable,” according to a National Archives report cataloging the accident reports of the CCC program.

According to the report, over 7,600 workplace accidents were filed during the CCC’s short existence and included several workplace deaths and life-threatening injuries. The report details cases of drownings and construction accidents.

Photo Credit: kthtrnr


Dems Ready Carbon Tax in Violation of Biden’s $400,000 Tax Pledge

Share on Facebook
Tweet this Story
Pin this Image

Posted by Mike Palicz on Friday, September 10th, 2021, 10:00 AM PERMALINK

House Democrats are proposing a new energy tax as a means of financing their $3.5 trillion ($3,500,000,000,000) tax and spending spree, according to a fact sheet released by Democrats on the House Energy & Commerce Committee.

The tax will automatically ratchet up each year at a rate of 5% above inflation. This is a tax increase on autopilot without congress having to hold a vote on it each time.

The plan would impose a regressive carbon tax on methane emissions from oil and gas development, likely amounting to a tax increase of $10-$15 billion annually. This tax will be paid for by American households in the form of higher energy bills and higher costs of everyday products. A recent letter to Congress from the American Gas Association warned that the methane tax would amount to a 17% increase on an average family's natural gas bill.

This tax increase would violate President Biden’s pledge not to raise any form of tax on anyone making less than $400,000 per year. Officials within the administration have repeatedly stated taxes that raise consumer energy prices are in violation of President Biden’s $400,000 tax pledge.

A recent Reuters story on Democrats’ proposals for new energy taxes even detailed how “the White House is concerned the Democrats' proposal will raise prices on a host of consumer goods, from cars to appliances, and conflict with Biden's pledge not to tax any American earning less than $400,000 per year.”  

The Democrat proposal is modeled off of legislation introduced earlier this year by Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse (D-R.I.) that would tax methane starting at a rate of $1,800/ton and then set to increase on autopilot at 5% above inflation annually.

Once this tax mechanism is in law, Democrats will gradually add other greenhouse gases and build a full-fledged carbon tax regime, with the cost burden shouldered by American households.

The same legislation also includes a market distorting import tax on crude oil and natural gas from other countries that would further increase consumer costs and likely lead to retaliatory actions from American trading partners in the form of tariffs and import taxes of their own.

More from Americans for Tax Reform


Dems Eye National Plastic Tax

Share on Facebook
Tweet this Story
Pin this Image

Posted by Mike Palicz on Friday, September 3rd, 2021, 6:33 PM PERMALINK

Democrats may impose a national plastic tax to finance their $3.5 trillion ($3,500,000,000,000) tax and spending spree, according to a leaked Senate Finance Committee document.

The document lists a "Plastics Excise Tax" which will "impose a $.20 per pound fee on the sale of virgin plastic." Virgin plastic is a vital material in medical devices and products, clothing, toys, and thousands of household products. The authenticity of the document was confirmed by NBC News.

"The Democrats' tax on plastics is a tax on every middle income American 50 times a day," said Grover Norquist, president of Americans for Tax Reform. "For Dustin Hoffman in The Graduate, the answer was 'plastics.' The question was, 'What will Democrats tax next?'"

The proposed tax hike appears to be modeled off of legislation introduced in early August by Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse (D-Beach Club), one of the most progressive members of the Senate.

The burden of the tax would be borne by consumers in the form of higher prices for everyday household goods.

Violates President Biden’s $400,000 Tax Pledge

The national plastic tax would violate President Biden’s pledge not to raise any form of tax on anyone making less than $400,000 per year. Even the White House has raised this concern. A recent Reuters story detailing Democrats proposed carbon border tax claimed, “the White House is concerned the Democrats' proposal will raise prices on a host of consumer goods, from cars to appliances, and conflict with Biden's pledge not to tax any American earning less than $400,000 per year.” The same logic applies to the plastic tax now under consideration.

Additional Taxes Democrats Plan to Impose:

Trillions in new tax increases on working families and small businesses. The recently-passed budget resolution is the first step toward the Biden plan to raise taxes by $3 trillion over the next decade. Some of these tax increases include: 

  • At least 2 million small businesses will get hit by Biden’s tax hikes. This includes over 1.4 million small businesses organized as c-corporations, family-owned farms impacted by the repeal of step-up in basis, and pass-through organizations which would be hit by the increase of the top marginal income tax rate to 39.6 percent.  
     
  • Increasing the corporate tax rate from 21 percent to 28 percent, which will be passed along to working families in the form of higher prices, fewer jobs, and lower wages. This will give the U.S. a combined state-federal rate of 32 percent, higher than our foreign competitors including China, which has a 25 percent corporate tax rate. 
     
  • Raising the corporate income tax rate will hit Americans with higher utility bills as the country tries to recover from the pandemic. Customers directly bear the cost of corporate income taxes imposed on utility companies. Investor-owned electric, gas, and water companies must get their billing rates approved by the respective state utility commissions. Therefore, if Democrats raise the corporate tax rate, they will have voted to raise utility bills. [Americans for Tax Reform has compiled 300 examples of utilities passing tax savings along to customers.] 
     
  • Doubling the capital gains tax to 43.4 percent, a rate more than double China’s capital gains tax. 
     
  • Taking away step-up in basis and imposing a second death tax by taxing unrealized capital gains at death. This will disproportionately fall on family-owned businesses. Taking away step-up in basis has already been tried and failed. In 1976, Congress eliminated stepped-up basis, but it was so complicated and unworkable that it was restored in 1980. 
     
  • Imposing a 15 percent minimum tax on “book income” that will disallow the use of important deductions and credits that help promote job creation and economic growth. 
     
  • Increasing the top income tax rate to 39.6%, a tax increase that will fall on small businesses. As noted in a recent Senate Finance Committee report, "... in 2016, only 42 percent of net business income in the United States was earned by corporations, down from 78.3 percent in 1980." 
     
  • New taxes on American energy including a tax on manufacturers based on their methane production and a carbon border tax. These tax increases will be passed along to families and businesses in the form of higher prices. 
     
  • Creating a 21 percent global minimum tax, higher than the 15 percent global minimum tax the Biden admin is pushing other countries to enact. Because existing law denies foreign tax credits, this could see businesses pay a top rate of 26.25 percent. 
     
  • Repealing the deduction for foreign-derived intangible income, a tax cut that encourages businesses to house their intellectual property in the United States. 


$80 billion in new IRS funding to hire 87,000 new agents. This would allow the IRS to audit and harass small businesses and American families for an additional $787 billion. It would hire enough new IRS agents to fill Nationals Park twice. 

It would help implement the Biden plan to create a new comprehensive financial account information reporting regime which would force the disclosure of any business or personal account that exceeds $600. 

Not only would this include the bank, loan, and investment accounts of virtually every individual and business, but it would also include third-party providers like Venmo, CashApp, and PayPal. 

New IRS funding will also be a boon to the union that represents IRS employees. This union, the National Treasury Employees Union (NTEU), shovels 97 percent of their money into Democrat campaign coffers. 

IRS employees also regularly perform union work on the taxpayer’s dime. In 2019, 1,421 IRS and other Treasury Department employees spent 353,820 hours of taxpayer-funded union time (TFUT), costing the federal government $17.27 million. 

Socialist healthcare policies such as H.R. 3, the Pelosi plan to impose new taxes and government price controls on American medical innovation. This legislation creates a 95 percent excise tax on manufacturers and imposes an international reference pricing scheme that directly imports foreign price controls into the U.S.  

This proposal will reduce access to new, lifesaving and life-preserving medicines. According to research by the Galen Institute, the U.S. had access to 90 percent of new cures launched between 2011 and 2018, a rate far greater than comparable foreign countries. For instance, The United Kingdom had access to 60 percent of medicines, Japan had 50 percent, and Canada had just 44 percent. 

It will also threaten high-paying manufacturing jobs across the country at a time when we are just emerging from the economic wreckage from the pandemic. Pharmaceutical manufacturers invest $100 billion in the U.S. economy every year, directly supporting 800,000 jobs including jobs in every state.  

Trillions in new welfare spending that will allow the federal government to promote woke policies. This includes: 

  • Hundreds of billions in funding for “free” pre-K and community college to “close the equity gap.” Part of this funding will ensure classroom environments that are “inclusive for all students.” 
     
  • $10 billion to create a Civilian Climate Corps. The program will help set the stage for the Green New Deal and give progressive activists free government housing, transportation, and salaries to “advance environmental justice.” 
     
  • New spending to make childcare “affordable,” and to promote “culturally and linguistically responsive environments.” 
     
  • New federal subsidies to improve “housing affordability and equity” and to encourage green and sustainable housing. 
     
  • Lowers the Medicare eligibility age and expands coverage to Dental, Vision, and Hearing. 
     

This $3.5 trillion spending package is a reckless proposal that will lead to increased taxes on working families and small businesses and trillions in new spending on welfare programs and woke policies.  

Americans for Tax Reform urges all Members of Congress to oppose all of the above tax increases.

Photo Credit: Third Way

More from Americans for Tax Reform

There are no related posts.


Treasury Guidance Aims to End Fossil Fuel Investment by Multilateral Development Banks

Share on Facebook
Tweet this Story
Pin this Image

Posted by Bryan Bashur, Mike Palicz on Friday, August 20th, 2021, 4:00 PM PERMALINK

President Biden’s Treasury Department released new guidance this week that further politicizes global investment in energy projects by discouraging capital flow to oil, natural gas and coal projects in developing nations.

The Treasury Department, which manages the United States’ participation in multilateral development banks (MDBs), released guidance establishing “a clear path to end Multilateral Development Banks’ support for fossil fuels,” according to a statement from Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen. The guidance encourages MDBs to oppose direct investment in coal and oil projects while outlining a “narrow support for natural gas.”

Currently, the United States participates in and donates to five MDBs: the World Bank; the Inter-American Development Bank; the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development; the Asian Development Bank; and the African Development Bank. The MDBs offer grants and loans to finance large infrastructure projects for developing countries.

According to the Treasury Department, the guidance was released pursuant to Biden’s executive order on “Tackling the Climate Crisis at Home and Abroad.” The EO directed the Secretary of the Treasury to “develop a strategy for how the voice and vote of the United States can be used in international financial institutions, including the World Bank Group” to pursue “the goals of the Paris Agreement.”

In response to the EO, the guidance notably rejects support for natural gas exploration projects and outlines strict criteria that have to be met in order to finance midstream and downstream natural gas projects. For example, the MDBs must prove that “no economically and technically feasible clean energy alternative” to natural gas. The project must also be aligned with “the goals of the Paris Agreement.”

The guidance issued by Treasury seemingly contradicts assurances given this week by Biden “Climate Czar” Gina McCarthy that the Biden administration is committed to an “all of the above” energy agenda and would not pick winners and losers. 

When considering future appropriations for MDBs, Congress should abstain from picking winners and losers. Taxpayer dollars used to develop energy projects abroad should be granted based solely upon the merits of the individual project. Developing nations that need access to affordable and reliable energy sources should be able to develop projects that are the most feasible and cost-effective regardless of political preferences.

Politicizing energy infrastructure in foreign countries is burdensome government intervention. Instead, the Biden administration should leave private capital to find the best way to bring long-lasting power to individuals around the world.  

Photo Credit: Paul Savala

More from Americans for Tax Reform


Heads Up: Infrastructure Bill Paves the Way for a Miles-Traveled Tax

Share on Facebook
Tweet this Story
Pin this Image

Posted by Mike Palicz on Wednesday, August 4th, 2021, 6:22 PM PERMALINK

Bill sets up pilot program with the goal of imposing a permanent vehicle mileage tax, shovels money to states to push them to do the same, and spends taxpayer money for politicians to lobby the public to support the tax

The $1.2 trillion infrastructure bill would pave the way for a new miles-driven tax on drivers by creating various pilot programs for a "vehicle per-mile user fee.”

A vehicle miles-traveled tax (VMT) would charge motorists based on how many miles they have traveled and is often pitched by proponents as a means of capturing additional revenue from the American people.

Biden administration officials, including White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki and Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg, have repeatedly stated that a VMT would violate President Biden’s pledge that he will not raise any taxes on people making less than $400,000 a year.

In March, Secretary Buttigieg was even forced to make an embarrassing walk back of his previous support for a VMT. “No (a VMT) is not part of the conversation about this infrastructure bill,” Buttigieg told CNN’s Jake Tapper. “I just want to make sure that's really clear."

Despite these promises from the Biden administration, $125 million is included in the legislative text to fund the creation of VMT pilot programs. Below are details taken straight from the infrastructure bill:  

Spends $75 million doling out grants to State, local and regional transportation departments to set up pilot programs

Section 13001 authorizes $15,000,000 for each of fiscal years 2022 through 2026 to be distributed as grants by the Secretary of Transportation with the purpose of establishing pilot projects at the State, local, and regional level “to test the feasibility of a road usage fee.”

Taxpayer dollars used to lobby the public for tax hikes

Sections 13001 states that an objective of the pilot programs that the Secretary of Transportation will be responsible for meeting will be “to conduct public education and outreach to increase public awareness regarding the need for user-based alternative revenue mechanisms for surface transportation programs.”

Translation: Taxpayer dollars used to lecture drivers on why they need to pay more taxes. Imagine a public service announce from Pete Buttigieg promoting a miles-traveled tax and paid for by taxpayers.

Spends $50 million creating a national VMT pilot program

Section 13002 authorizes $10,000,000 for each of fiscal years 2022 through 2026 to carry out the implementation of a national VMT pilot program. Program participants would volunteer to participate in the pilot program with the goal of testing “the design, acceptance, implementation, and financial sustainability of a national motor vehicle per-mile user-fee.” Volunteers would be solicited from all 50 states and include both commercial and passenger vehicles.

Creates an Advisory Board stacked with special interest groups, lobbyists and woke activists

Section 13002 sets up "Federal System Funding Alternative Advisory Board" to make recommendations on the structure, scope and methodology of the pilot program and to carry out a public awareness campaign for the program. The bill mandates that the board shall include representatives of the trucking industry, transportation focused non-profits, and “advocacy groups focused on equity.”

Outlines tools used to track driver’s miles driven

The bill lays out the various “vehicle-miles-traveled-collection tools” that would be used by the federal government to track drivers. These tools include third-party onboard diagnostic devices (GPS tracking devices), smart phone apps, data from automakers and data obtained by car insurance companies.

 

Photo Credit: WTOP

More from Americans for Tax Reform

There are no related posts.


Democrats Announce Funding for Green New Deal Hall Monitors in $3.5 Trillion Spending Package

Share on Facebook
Tweet this Story
Pin this Image

Posted by Mike Palicz on Wednesday, July 14th, 2021, 3:12 PM PERMALINK

Included in the $3.5 trillion spending package announced by Senate Democrats on Tuesday is funding for the creation of a uniformed “Civilian Climate Corps” tasked with the vague mission of “advancing environmental justice.”

The Civilian Climate Corps’ (CCC) inclusion in the package is a major concession to far-left environmental advocates calling for the creation of the CCC as a year one priority of the Green New Deal while lauding the “government jobs” it would create for climate activists. 

The CCC is a make-work program for progressive activists complete with free government housing and transportation to work. Enrollees would be paid to wag their finger and lecture taxpayers on climate change activism. CCC members would be the government-stamped Hall Monitors of the Green New Deal. 

The CCC's inclusion in the Democrats’ spending package comes after Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer vowed last week that he would “work tirelessly to achieve a big and bold Civilian Climate Corps that places justice at the center and urgently addresses our interlocking climate and economic crisis.”

Details on the level of proposed funding for the CCC are not yet available, but President Biden’s own proposal previously called for $10 billion in new spending while progressive House members such as Rep. Alexandria Ocasio Cortez have called for a number as high as $132 billion to hire 1.5 million climate activists.

While details are still forthcoming, the plan is modeled off of the 21st Century Civilian Conservation Corps Act introduced by House Democrats last Congress.

The legislation provides further insight into Senate Democrats' proposal, the details of which are below:

Taxpayer-funded housing, clothing, and feeding of Climate Corps members. 

According to the legislation, taxpayers would be responsible for paying the cost of Climate Corps members’ housing, clothing, feeding, allowance, and medical expenses. Nothing screams good-paying jobs like an “allowance” from the government. Here it is straight from the bill’s text:

“The President may provide housing for persons employed in the Civilian Conservation Corps and furnish them with such subsistence, clothing, medical attendance and hospitalization, and cash allowance, as may be necessary, during the period they are so employed.”

Taxpayer-funded transportation to “work” for Climate Corps members.

Not only will the government provide food, clothing, housing, and an allowance, it will also pick up members of the Climate Corps and drive them to work for them. 

"The President may provide for the transportation of persons employed in the Civilian Conservation Corps to and from the places of employment."

Allows President Biden to seize private property through land condemnation.

President Biden would be empowered to seize public land deemed necessary to construct projects authorized under the bill.

“The President, or the head of any department or agency authorized by the President to construct any project or to carry on any public works under this Act, may acquire real property for such project or public work by purchase, donation, condemnation, or otherwise.”

Jobs are prioritized for individuals who have already used up unemployment benefits 

According to the text of the legislation, the President shall prioritize “unemployed citizens who have exhausted their entitlement to unemployment compensation,” over other citizens still “eligible for unemployment compensation payable under any State law or Federal unemployment compensation law.”

80 percent of funding used on employment, not conservation. 

While the Biden administration claims the proposal is about conservation and addressing climate change, the legislation mandates that 80 percent of funding is to be used just on the salaries of staff.

“Not less than 80 percent of the funds utilized pursuant to paragraph (1) must be used to provide for the employment of individuals under this Act.”

Based on a failed 1930’s program that housed “employees” in military camps.

The effort is reportedly an attempt by the Biden administration to revive a long-defunct jobs program created in 1933 as part of the New Deal and similarly titled the Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC). In 1937, shortly after the CCC’s creation, Congress elected to phase out funding for the program, officially ending the CCC in 1942.

According to a September report from the Congressional Research Service, The CCC was a government employment program for unemployed males aged 18-25 in which “enrollees were recruited, hired, and trained by the federal government, worked under federal supervision, lived in government-run military camps, and received stipends paid for with federal funding.”

CCC was extremely accident-prone.

It turns out taking untrained youths and asking them to perform manual labor in the wilderness is a dangerous idea. “Given the nature of the work (“most of which consisted of manual labor”) and the inexperience of most enrollees, accidents were inevitable,” according to a National Archives report cataloging the accident reports of the CCC program.

According to the report, over 7,600 workplace accidents were filed during the CCC’s short existence and included several workplace deaths and life-threatening injuries. The report details cases of drownings and construction accidents. 

More from Americans for Tax Reform


KEY VOTE: ATR Urges “NO” Vote on “INVEST Act” (H.R. 3684)

Share on Facebook
Tweet this Story
Pin this Image

Posted by Mike Palicz on Wednesday, June 30th, 2021, 5:07 PM PERMALINK

The House of Representatives is expected to vote tomorrow on the “Investing in a New Vision for the Environment and Surface Transportation in America (INVEST in America) Act.”

Americans for Tax Reform urges lawmakers to oppose the INVEST ACT and vote “No.”

House Democrats have taken what is normally a strongly bipartisan surface transportation reauthorization process and turned it into a grab bag of wasteful spending on progressive priorities.

This bill would spend $547 billion over 5 years, a 34% increase above current baseline spending while also bringing back earmarks for the first time since 2011.

Section 107 of the bill lists 1,473 “Member-designated projects” that would receive $5.7 billion in additional funding. This is the exact type of wasteful spending that resulted in public outrage from voters and led to the House moratorium on earmarks in 2011.

This legislation is filled with provisions unrelated to infrastructure meant to be a down payment on President Biden’s Leftist climate agenda.

Democrats included roughly $20 billion on climate provisions, $8.4 billion for a Carbon Pollution Reduction Program and $4 billion for the “Clean Corridors program” to use taxpayer money building electric vehicle charging stations for wealthy EV owners.

Democrats also include several new burdensome regulations into this bill. Section 8202 would “rescind any special permit or approval for the transport of liquefied natural gas (LNG) by rail tank car” designed to make it more difficult for natural gas to be transported. Section 4301 would require limo drivers to have a new commercial driver’s license (CDL) in order for drivers to work. 

House Democrats even managed to sneak a few “woke” provisions into their infrastructure bill, including $20 million for “Implicit bias research and training grants” for institutions of higher learning. Here it is straight from the text:

Section 3010: “Establishes a discretionary grant program available to institutions of higher education for research, development, technology transfer, and training activities in the operation or establishment of an implicit bias training program as it relates to racial profiling at traffic stops. Authorizes $20 million annually to be appropriated for the program out of the general fund.

Congress should not be engaged in such gross level of wasteful spending at a time when inflation is a growing national concern. Democrats have simply slapped the word "infrastructure" onto their progressive tax and spend agenda in hopes of tricking taxpayers. 

Americans for Tax Reform urges all Members to oppose the INVEST Act and vote NO.

Photo Credit: Flickr

More from Americans for Tax Reform

There are no related posts.


Durbin Backs Indexing Gas Tax to Inflation, Clear Violation of Biden’s $400,000 Tax Pledge

Share on Facebook
Tweet this Story
Pin this Image

Posted by Mike Palicz on Thursday, June 10th, 2021, 3:04 PM PERMALINK

Senate Majority Whip Dick Durbin (D-Ill.) said Thursday that he supports indexing the gas tax to inflation to pay for an infrastructure package.

“I think that ultimately has to happen...I look at it as a user fee,” Durbin told reporters.

The call from Democrat Senate leadership to raise the gas tax comes as gas prices continue to soar over $3.00/gallon and consumer prices jumped 5% in May.

Indexing the federal gas tax to inflation would amount to a gas tax increase on autopilot. Congress has declined to increase the gas tax since 1993 when it was raised to its current level of 18.4 cents/gallon. For context, if the gas tax had been indexed to inflation in 1993, the current gas tax would be roughly 33.5 cents/gallon, more than an 80% increase of the current gas tax.

Durbin’s call to raise the gas tax is a clear contradiction of the Biden administration’s position to date and would violate President Biden’s promise that “nobody making less than $400,000 have to pay a penny more in tax under my proposals.”

Biden’s own Secretary of Transportation, Pete Buttiegieg, has previously acknowledged that increasing the federal gas tax would violate Biden’s pledge.

“The President’s made a commitment that this administration will not raise taxes on people making less than $400,000 a year,” Buttigieg told Bloomberg Radio’s “Sound On” show in February. “And so that rules out approaches like the old fashioned gas tax.” Buttgieg’s comments came as he walked back his previous call to raise the gas tax and index it to inflation during confirmation hearings.

Photo Credit: Charles Edward Miller

More from Americans for Tax Reform


CLEAN Future Act Lays Groundwork for Backdoor Fracking Ban

Share on Facebook
Tweet this Story
Pin this Image

Posted by Mike Palicz on Tuesday, May 25th, 2021, 8:58 AM PERMALINK

On Tuesday, the House Subcommittee on Environment and Climate Change of the Committee on Energy and Commerce will hold a legislative hearing on the CLEAN Future Act, legislation sponsored by Energy and Commerce Committee Chairman Frank Pallone, Jr. (D-NJ). 
 

Buried within the Democrats’ 981-page "climate" bill are provisions that would lay the groundwork for a nationwide fracking ban, threatening American production of oil and natural gas, U.S. energy independence, and affordable energy for consumers. 

Section 623 is a federal power grab stripping states of the right to regulate hydraulic fracturing and could empower EPA to impose a nationwide fracking ban through federal regulation of fluids required for hydraulic fracturing.

Rather than allowing states to regulate fluids from hydraulic fracturing as they currently do, Section 623 would "prohibit the underground injection of fluids or propping agents pursuant to hydraulic fracturing operations" unless operators meet testing and data reporting requirements determined by political appointees at the EPA.

Democrats are using the long-debunked and anti-science notion that fracking is an inherent threat to groundwater in order to seize regulatory authority away from states. This provision would break from the Obama EPA's years-long assessment that federal regulation of fracking's impact on water resources was not required.

resolution co-sponsored by state oil regulators in Texas and North Dakota in response to the CLEAN Future Act urges the Biden Administration and Congress to oppose the CLEAN Future Act on behalf of oil and gas producing states. In the rollout of the resolution, Texas Railroad Commissioner Wayne Christian labeled the CLEAN Future Act as "nothing more than the Green New Deal in lipstick,” that would "effectively federalize regulation of oil and gas, increasing costs to consumers and our national debt, while harming our energy independence and national security.

Here is text straight from the resolution:

"The CLEAN Future Act would impose redundant and unneeded regulations on oil and gas drilling, hydraulic fracturing, and production operations currently regulated by the States..." 

"The CLEAN Future Act contravenes the principle of cooperative federalism by creating significant regulations at the national level that will limit the ability of states to regulate the exploration and production of oil and gas within their jurisdictions."

Section 625 would allow EPA to classify "produced waters" as "hazardous waste" to prevent fracking, contrary to EPA's own 2019 assessment. 

Exploration and production wastes have been regulated as non-hazardous wastes under the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA) for decades. EPA's most recent assessment in 2019 reaffirmed this determination by concluding “revisions to the federal regulations for the management of exploration, development and production wastes of crude oil, natural gas and geothermal energy under Subtitle D of RCRA are not necessary at this time.”

Yet section 625 ignores these findings and labels the current classification as a "loophole" and an "arbitrary and needless evasion of regulations." The clear intent of Democrats in this section is to provide a pathway forward for political appointees at the EPA to alter the longstanding classification of produced waters from "non-hazardous waste" to "hazardous waste." Doing so would bring American fracking to a standstill as only 800 wells in the U.S. are equipped to handle hazardous waste compared to 180,000 non-hazardous waste wells, according to EPA data.

Wrongly reclassifying produced waters as hazardous waste would overwhelm the industry's capacity to handle hazardous waste and effectively shut down production.

Both of these provisions are attempts to concentrate the regulatory authority of American energy production at the federal level for the purpose of furthering the political Left's anti-fracking crusade. 

Americans for Tax Reform urges Members of Congress to oppose the CLEAN Future Act. 

More from Americans for Tax Reform

There are no related posts.


On Gas Crisis, Biden Energy Secretary Admonishes: "If you drive an electric car, this would not be affecting you."

Share on Facebook
Tweet this Story
Pin this Image

Posted by Mike Palicz on Thursday, May 13th, 2021, 2:27 PM PERMALINK

Energy Secretary Jennifer Granholm admonished vehicle owners at a press briefing on Tuesday, telling drivers they wouldn't be impacted by the Colonial Pipeline cyberattack and resulting gasoline shortage if they instead owned electric vehicles. 

During Tuesday's White House briefing, Granholm was asked by a reporter how the Colonial Pipeline ransomware attack would impact the Biden administration's efforts "to move in more of a renewable direction since this is going to have an impact on people at the pump?”

“I mean, we obviously are all in on making sure that we meet the president’s goals of getting to 100 percent clean electricity by 2035 and net-zero carbon emissions by 2050,” Secretary Granholm answered.

If you drive an electric car, this would not be affecting you, clearly.”

Granholm's comments came as thousands of gas stations across the Southeast and Mid-Atlantic had run out of gasoline amid a near week-long shutdown of the nation’s largest fuel pipeline.

Regarding Secretary Granholm's suggestion that motorists should instead purchase EVs to avoid such a gas crisis, the average cost of an electric vehicle (EV) in 2020 was $52,000, according to a May report.

Granholm's statement renewed criticism from the media and calls from Senate Republicans to launch an investigation into a potential conflict of interest for the Energy Secretary, as Granholm owns up to $5 million in stock options from Proterra, a manufacturer of EV charging stations and car batteries. 

EVs are a core element of President Biden's proposed infrastructure package, which contains $174 billion in taxpayer money to be used subsidizing EVs and EV charging stations. 

Click here or below to watch the video.

 


Pages

×