U.S. Rep. Harold "Hal" Rogers (KY-05) supported several pieces of legislation this week to rein in the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). Since 2008, President Obama and the EPA have targeted the coal industry in the Appalachian region with overreaching regulations, questionable spending, and a halt on mining permits. In the last year and a half, Kentucky lost 5,700 coal mining jobs, while more than 200 coal-fired power plants across the country have been shut down.
"The President has made his mission to bankrupt coal very clear, but I'm fighting for every single coal miner by working to rein in the EPA and this Administration's job-killing agenda," said Rogers. "At every turn, I’ve tried to throw roadblocks in front of the EPA’s destructive rules and rein in the Agency’s out-of-touch regulatory overreach with cuts to its budget. While this Administration has shuttered coal-fired plants and destroyed jobs, Congress is working overtime to protect the American way of life."
On July 25, 2013, the House passed the Coal Residuals Reuse and Management Act of 2013, H.R. 2218, which would allow States to develop "coal ash" permit programs, as long as they meet the Federal minimum requirements provided in the bill. In effect, this bill ensures that coal will continue to be an affordable part of our country’s energy supply, while also ensuring that leftover “coal ash” can be recycled for use in our roads, bridges and buildings. Rogers co-sponsored the bill, which now heads to the Senate for action.
Earlier this week, the House Appropriations Committee, where Rogers serves as Chairman, introduced the House Appropriations Fiscal Year 2014 Interior and Environment Bill. The bill cuts EPA funding by 34% and includes provisions to address potentially job-killing regulatory actions by the Administration. The bill includes a number of provisions to protect coal mining in Appalachia, including language that would prevent the Administration from moving forward with new regulations on greenhouse gas emissions; the “Stream Buffer Rule;” or the definition of “navigable waters” or “fill material”under the Clean Water Act.
Rogers also authored a letter on July 22nd that was co-signed by 22 Members of Congress, opposing EPA mandates that regulate greenhouse gases.
Rogers has served Kentucky’s 5th Congressional District since 1981. With a focus on economic development, job creation, fighting illegal drugs and preserving Appalachia’s natural treasures, he has a reputation for listening to his constituents and fighting for the region he represents. For more information, visit http://halrogers.house.gov/ or follow Rogers on Twitter https://twitter.com/#!/RepHalRogers or on Facebook https://www.facebook.com/#!/CongressmanHalRogers.