Press Releases

Rogers Participates in Rural America Solutions Group Forum

Calls on EPA and Congressional Democrats to Abandon Job-Killing Regulations

Today, U.S. Congressman Hal Rogers (KY-05) joined Members of the Rural America Solutions Group for a forum on the job-killing regulations being imposed by the Obama Administration’s Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). Rogers condemned the EPA’s targeted War on Appalachian Coal before introducing panelist Robert Gabbard, CEO of Kentucky-based U.S. Coal Corporation. In addition to Mr. Gabbard’s testimony, Members heard from six other rural Americans from across the nation who provided real-life examples of how EPA’s regulations are stifling job creation, impeding economic recovery and harming their livelihoods.

“At a time when many rural communities are experiencing double digit unemployment, this forum highlights the Obama Administration’s targeted efforts to expand the role of the EPA at the expense of small businesses across rural America. In southern and eastern Kentucky, we’ve experienced the brunt of EPA attacks on Appalachian coal for months, but it’s clear this is an assault on rural America that extends far beyond the Commonwealth and cuts across all sectors of the economy. It threatens to shut down businesses and put thousands of Americans out of work,” said Rogers. “As folks around the country continue to struggle to put food on the table, there couldn’t be a worse time for the Obama Administration to target rural Americans with its big government agenda. Small businesses in Kentucky simply don’t need more red tape. They need a federal government that will get out of their backyards and instead focus on creating jobs, preventing tax hikes and getting our economy back on track.”

Robert Gabbard, CEO of Kentucky-based U.S. Coal Corporation, was among seven panelists at the forum. Gabbard highlighted the negative impacts of Cap and Trade legislation, as well as the EPA’s recently implemented standards for surface mining in six Appalachian states which have caused significant barriers and delays in issuing job-creating coal mining permits. “The industry has changed over the years, and we’re producing coal in a manner that is safer and more environmentally responsible than ever before,” he stated. “The coal industry provides thousands of jobs to the communities of rural Appalachia and provides many more thousands of jobs through the vendors and suppliers being utilized. Yet, the EPA and other federal regulatory agencies seek to regulate us out of business.”

To upend the EPA’s “strangulation by regulation,” earlier this month, Rogers introduced H.R. 6113, the Electricity Reliability Protection Act, which would prohibit EPA from executing new regulatory guidance until going through the formal rule-making process, thus allowing for appropriate public comment and discourse. H.R. 6113, introduced with broad bi-partisan support, is currently under consideration by several House Committees.

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