VIDEO: Serving Our Community
Lancaster, Pa. – U.S. Rep. Lloyd Smucker (PA-16) today released a new video, Serving Our Community, highlighting his work and accomplishments in the House of Representatives in the first eight months of the 115th Congress.
Click the image to watch the video.
Since taking office, Rep. Smucker has received and responded to more than 60,000 constituents via email, mail, or phone calls. In just eight months, he has had more than 200 meetings with constituents in Pennsylvania and Washington, and has visited nearly 50 schools, businesses, or other organizations prior to the August district work period. In addition, Rep. Smucker’s office has completed 619 casework items for constituents.
Combating the Opioid Epidemic
On May 18, Rep. Smucker urged President Trump’s administration to reject spending cuts to the Office of National Drug Control Policy (ONDCP) in order to continue the fight against the heroin and opioid epidemic that has swept across Pennsylvania and the nation.
Rep. Smucker sent a letter to Office of Management and Budget (OMB) Director Mick Mulvaney. In the letter, Rep. Smucker said:
“Now more than ever our nation must prioritize federal funding to combat rampant drug abuse. As you are aware, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reports that in 2015 opioids were involved in the death of 33,091 Americans – more than double the rate in 2000. The opioid epidemic is tragically engulfing the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania and has claimed the lives of more than 3,383 of our constituents in 2015. We must increase the federal government’s response in the wake of this public health crisis.”
President Trump’s administration reversed course and funded the ONDCP for FY17. You can learn more about Rep. Smucker’s efforts to combat the opioid epidemic here.
A Loving Home for Children
On June 20, 2017, the House passed Rep. Smucker’s bipartisan bill to make the foster care system more family-friendly by making it easier to place foster children in the home of a family member. Introduced with Rep. Terri Sewell (AL-07), the Reducing Barriers for Relative Foster Parents Actwould direct the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) to modernize foster care licensing standards that states can use as a model to update their own standards.
Strengthening Career and Technical Education
On June 22, 2017, the House passed the bipartisan Strengthening Career and Technical Education for the 21st Century Act to help give Americans the skills they need to compete for in-demand jobs. Rep. Smucker is an original cosponsor of this legislation, and helped advance it out of committee. You can watch Rep. Smucker speak on this legislation here.
Rep. Smucker has his own experience with non-traditional education. He took college courses at night while operating a small construction company during the day. Countless students across Pennsylvania and the nation have similar experiences, and we should make it easier for them to compete in today’s 21st century economy. This legislation will help businesses and schools collaborate to ensure students gain the skills necessary to get family-sustaining jobs that are in demand.
You can learn more about the Strengthening Career and Technical Education for the 21stCentury Act here.
On June 8, 2017, the House passed the Financial CHOICE Act which included Rep. Smucker’s amendment to help protect consumer data from cyber-attacks. You can watch a short video of Rep. Smucker speaking about his amendment here.
When Rep. Smucker graduated from high school, he bought a small construction company from his brother that had just a few employees. When he was ready to grow that business, he didn’t go to Wall Street for a loan – he went to a community bank. They knew him, and provided the capital necessary to expand and create more jobs. There are countless stories of motivated individuals that want to harness the power of free enterprise to build something. In many ways, that’s the American Dream. Unfortunately, in today’s regulatory environment, achieving this can be extraordinarily difficult.
The Financial CHOICE Act will make it easier for community banks to provide capital to entrepreneurs who want to innovate and small business owners who are ready to grow and hire more workers. It ends taxpayer bailouts of Wall Street firms, cuts the deficit by $24 billion, and reins in unelected, unaccountable bureaucrats in Washington. You can learn more about the Financial CHOICE Act here.
A Responsible Federal Budget
For too long, Congress has been governing from one funding crisis to the next. Rep. Smucker was sent to Congress not to prop up the status quo, but to help end it. The FY18 budget resolution passed out of the Budget Committee in July, Building A Better America, does just that, and puts Congress on a path towards regular order and fiscal sanity. It will grow the economy, create more opportunity for working families, and reignite the American Dream.
The FY18 budget resolution balances the budget in 10 years, controls federal spending, strengthens and secures Medicare, and supports robust funding for our troops to keep our homeland safe. Importantly, this plan also provides instructions for necessary fundamental tax reform that will reduce rates, simplify the code, and create jobs. It also uses reconciliation to address mandatory spending, which hasn’t been done in more than a decade. We need to do more. Read about what Rep. Smucker would like to see done in a column he wrote here.
Supporting National Defense
On July 14, 2017, the House passed the National Defense Authorization Act – a bipartisan bill that provides our troops the resources they need in order to help keep our homeland safe. It fully funds a 2.4 percent pay increase for our troops, supports ongoing counterterrorism efforts across the globe, provides backing to our partner forces fighting ISIS in Syria and Iraq, and includes $150 million for the Ukraine Security Assistance Initiative to help defend against Russian aggression.
The bill also included Rep. Smucker’s bipartisan amendment to expand the United Services Military Apprenticeship Program to any member of the uniformed services. You can learn more about the National Defense Authorization Act here.
Preserving the Susquehanna Valley
On June 21, 2017, Rep. Smucker introduced the Susquehanna National Heritage Area Act with Reps. Scott Perry and Pat Meehan to preserve the natural beauty of the Susquehanna Valley. When the bill was introduced, Rep. Smucker said:
“I’m very proud of the natural beauty we find in our communities. We want to ensure we maintain that safe and clean environment into the future for residents and visitors. This National Heritage Area designation will attract more visitors, stimulate the local economy, and preserve natural resources and historical landmarks. I am pleased to introduce this bill with Reps. Perry and Meehan, and look forward to reinvigorating our community’s investment in our land.”
The bill would make Lancaster and York Counties a National Heritage Area (NHA) – a Congressional designation where “natural, cultural, historic, and recreational resources form a cohesive, nationally distinctive landscape arising from human activity shaped by geography.” NHAs receive conservation assistance from the National Park Service. You can learn more about this legislation here.
Serving as an Example of Civility
One month after taking office, Rep. Smucker delivered a speech on the House floor urging his colleagues on both sides of the aisle to serve as an example of civility and respect in today’s public discourse. At the beginning of this Congress, Rep. Smucker signed a “Commitment to Civility,” a pledge signed by a bipartisan group of 46 freshman House members that outlines their efforts to encourage productive dialogue, build consensus, and work to restore the public’s trust.
You can watch Rep. Smucker’s full floor speech here.