Friday, December 21, 2018

Billy Long: 115th Congress ' accomplishments will make life better for many Americans

(From Seventh District Congressman Billy Long)

Soon after the 115th Congress kicked off, President Trump promised the end of all talk and no action. Over the past two years Congress has worked hard to make good on this promise by passing landmark legislation that cuts taxes, combats opioid abuse and rolls back regulations.

I’ve always felt hard working taxpayers should be able to hold on to as much of their own money as possible.

In 2017, Republicans came together and passed H.R. 1, the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act, which modernized our decades old tax system. This bill decreases the number of tax brackets, increases the child tax credit and provides new incentives for small businesses to expand. 

Since we passed tax reform, nearly two million jobs have been added to the economy, the unemployment rate is the lowest it’s been since 1969 and the American people have more money in their pockets.

Along with tax reform, Republicans have spent the last two years rolling back Obama-era regulations that have cost businesses millions of dollars. 

During their first year, small businesses will spend more than $83,000 to stay compliant with regulations. Given their excessive cost, more than half of small businesses say that regulations are their top concern. 

Republicans have worked hard to pass legislation limiting the federal government’s role and ensuring businesses can thrive. Since 2017, we have passed bills that increase congressional oversight, such as the Midnight Rules Relief Act, and bills that roll back regulations entirely, such as the BRICK Act, which targets abusive environmental regulations.

While I’m proud of the work my colleagues and I have done cutting taxes and rolling back regulations, I’m especially proud of the work we have done combatting the opioid epidemic. 

This bipartisan issue brought together both parties, leading to the passage of H.R. 6, the SUPPORT for Patients and Communities Act, which targets treatment, recovery, prevention, communities and combatting fentanyl. H.R. 6 directly helps communities impacted by this epidemic by creating recovery centers for those struggling with addiction, increasing research and boosting telehealth technologies.

While the 115th Congress was filled with a number of accomplishments that will make life better for many Americans, I look forward to continuing our efforts during the 116th Congress.

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