Here’s a rundown on some of the planned regulations, courtesy of Fox News. (H/T Dad)
The Obama administration is trying to get fossil-fuel fired power plants to reduce carbon dioxide emissions by 30 percent from 2005 levels by 2030.
The EPA proposed the rules last year and is set to finalize them by summer 2015.
[…]Among them is a controversial EPA proposal to expand regulatory power over streams and wetlands. The agency, set to finalize the rule in April, estimates it could impose costs of between $162 million to $278 million per year…
[…][D]etractors claim it is an opening for the EPA to claim authority over countless waterways, including streams that only show up during heavy rainfall. Critics warn this could create more red tape for property owners and businesses if they happen to have even small streams on their land.
Rep. Lamar Smith, R-Texas, chairman of the House Science, Space, and Technology Committee, has called it an effort to “control a huge amount of private property across the country.”
In another EPA initiative, the agency is looking to October to finalize sweeping ozone regulations.
In proposing the limits on smog-forming pollution linked to asthma and respiratory illness in November, EPA Administrator Gina McCarthy argued that the public health benefits far outweigh the costs and that most of the U.S. can meet the tougher standards without doing anything new.
“We need to be smart — as we always have — in trying to find the best benefits in a way that will continue to grow the economy,” McCarthy said. Of reducing ozone, she added: “We’ve done it before, and we’re on track to do it again.”
But business groups panned the proposal as unnecessary and the costliest in history, warning it could jeopardize a resurgence in American manufacturing.
[…]The rules are estimated to cost industry anywhere between $3.9 billion and $15 billion by 2025. That price tag would exceed that of any previous environmental regulation in the U.S. Environmental groups are pushing for stricter limits still.
On other fronts, the Federal Communications Commission could move in a matter of months to propose new “net neutrality” rules. Obama weighed in on that debate late last year, urging the FCC to regulate the Internet like other utilities.
The White House is calling for an “explicit ban” on deals between broadband Internet providers and online services like Netflix, Amazon or YouTube to move their content faster, a potential new source of revenue for cable companies.
[…]Meanwhile, the National Labor Relations Board has issued new rules for so-called “ambush” union elections — speeding up elections and requiring employers to give unions contact information for workers. The rules take effect in April.
These regulations will have nasty effects on job-creating companies and that will work its way down to consumers, who will have to eat the costs. But at least the social engineers will feel really good about themselves, and without having to do the hard work of creating products and services that people will actually pay their own money for of their own free choice.
The very funny thing about this is how unionized blue-collar Democrats complain that they cannot compete with countries abroad, then vote in the very people that make them uncompetitive. You can bet that leaders in other low-cost countries do not pass laws to make them less competitive. And that’s why everything is manufactured abroad. Democrat voters bring these problems on themselves by electing socialists who hamstring American industry.
In response to a series of controversial decisions by the National Labor Relations Board, the House of Representatives passed a bill curtailing the power of the NLRB Thursday afternoon.
The Protecting Jobs From Government Interference Act, H.R. 2587, passed the Republican-controlled House by a vote of 138-186. The bill would prohibit the National Labor Relations Board from ordering any employer to close, relocate, or transfer employment under any circumstance.
The NLRB has been the target of Republican ire since the board filed a complaint against Boeing in April for opening a plant in South Carolina, a right-to-work state. The NLRB said Boeing was punishing workers in Washington state with the decision.
Since then, the NLRB has handed down a spate of pro-union rules that have infuriated labor critics and Republican lawmakers.
Republican legislators say the board shouldn’t have power to dictate where private businesses locate. Union advocates claim the bill would strip the board’s ability to enforce labor laws.
The bill was sponsored by Republican Rep. Tim Scott of South Carolina and introduced in July.
“Today’s vote is important for our entire nation, as well as for my home district in South Carolina, where the NLRB is currently pursuing an agenda which, if successful, would kill thousands of jobs,” Scott said in a statement. “By removing the NLRB’s ability to dictate where private industry creates jobs, we are preventing an unelected, Presidentially-appointed government board from pitting state against state, inserting themselves into the business decisions of private companies, and scaring away investment in our nation.”
Scott has also introduced a bill rolling back several other rules recently passed by the NLRB.
By the way, I’ve been informed that something like 40% of union members vote Republican. It’s not the union members who are bad, it’s the unions. Imagine how those people feel about having dues taken out of their salaries to fund left-wing causes?
Newly-proposed legislation in Congress would restore federal funding for abstinence education as the Obama administration continues to discriminate against grants to programs that promote abstinence over sex education.
Recently, the Department of Health and Human Services announced new funding opportunities for initiatives on the subject, but included a caveat that grants would no go to agencies promoting abstinence education. Applicants for the FOA must include a written statement, according to a National Catholic Register report, that abstinence education is not part of the program, because the Obama administration considers it an “unallowable activity.”
Organizations receiving funding under the program must make a “commitment to not use funds for unauthorized activities, including, but not limited to, an abstinence-education program.” Some $75 million has been authorized under the Claims Resolution Act of 2010 for the programs.
[…]On Tuesday, legislation was announced on the floor of the House of Representatives that could change this and restore funding for abstinence education. The Abstinence-Centered Education Reallocation Act, sponsored by Rep. Randall Hultgren, an Illinois Republican, is a bill that will put a priority on the sexual risk avoidance message found in abstinence programs.
Abstinence education isn’t just about STIs, it’s about love and marriage. Marital stability is stronger when single men and women avoid premarital sex.
Pro-growth Tax Reform
This one is part of Paul Ryan’s “Path to Prosperity” plan. This time he is explaining his 3-step plan to reform the tax laws to promote job creation.
America’s economy has been hit really hard. A lot of people have lost their jobs. More borrowing and spending and higher taxes are not going to bring jobs back to America. The last thing we need to be doing is to complicate job creation in America with this complicated tax code that we have today.
A tax code should be fair, competitive and simple, and the US tax code fails on all three counts. Here are common-sense ideas we’ve advanced before…ideas that have bipartisan support.
First, we have to make our tax code fair.
It’s full of deductions, credits and special carve-outs – otherwise known as “loopholes” – that let politically-connected companies avoid paying taxes. Every dollar that businesses spend lobbying for a better tax deal, is a dollar they’re not spending on making a better product.
And, since every dollar hidden in a loophole doesn’t get taxed – politicians make up for this lost revenue by increasing overall tax rates. So we need to close these loopholes.
But if we just close loopholes, then our federal corporate tax rate is 35 percent, which is really high.
Add in state and local taxes, the rate climbs to 39.2 percent – the second highest tax rate among developed countries.
On top of sending almost 40 cents out of every dollar earned, straight to the government, businesses pay investment taxes, payroll taxes, and a handful of other taxes our government makes job creators pay.
In the 21st century global economy – and when American families need jobs – this approach just doesn’t make any sense.
We need to make our tax code competitive.
The budget we passed in the House of Representatives calls for closing the loopholes and lowering the rates.
The President’s bipartisan Fiscal Commission proposed something similar.
Its plan would reduce the corporate tax rate to as low as 26 percent, and to lower the top individual rate that many small businesses pay to as low as 23 percent.
So if we lower tax rates, does that mean the wealthy pay less in taxes? Not if we do it by closing loopholes. Because the people who use most of the loopholes are those in the top tax brackets. For all the money that’s parked in these tax loopholes, all that money’s taxed at zero. Take away the tax loophole; lower everybody’s tax rates – that money’s now taxed. But its taxed at a fair more simple, more competitive way so the small business men and women who are out there striving and competing have a better tax rate so they can compete in this global economy.
Third, let’s make the tax code simple.
All together, individuals and businesses spend over six billion hours and 160 billion dollars, every year, just trying to understand and comply with the tax code.
Let’s simplify the code, not just by closing loopholes, but also by decreasing the number of different tax brackets taxpayers fall in.
Fewer brackets, along with lower individual rates, will make the tax code less complicated, and let more people keep more of the money they earn.
There’s a reason this approach has attracted bipartisan support: It’s Fair, It’s Competitive, and It’s Simple.
America’s been knocked down before. We’ve had tough recessions before, and we know that the secret to growing jobs and prosperity in America are through the ingenuity and the hard work of our businesses – of our small businesses, of our large businesses, of job creators. We don’t want a tax system that rewards people for coming to Washington and getting special favors. We want a tax system that rewards Americans for hard work, risk taking, entrepreneurship , investment and innovation. These are the kinds of things that have made America great in the past. And these are the kinds of ideas the we’re going to need if want to grow our economy in the future and compete in the 21st century global economy.
Imagine if the United States were the best place for companies to do business. Imagine the job growth that would stimulate.