Congress is on recess this month, which means that many of your legislators are home – attending fairs, festivals and rodeos, and, in some cases, holding town hall meetings.
These events are great opportunities for members of Congress to hear from you, and for you to influence their decisions and hold them accountable for their votes.
We encourage you to look for opportunities to attend.
Here are some of WORC’s priorities that are timely that we hope you’ll raise:
Protect Standards Preventing Methane Pollution and Waste
The Bureau of Land Management and Environmental Protection Agency are considering weakening rules limiting flaring, venting and leaks of natural gas. These rules protect people’s health and the climate and stop the waste of a nonrenewable resource. States piloting these policies have seen economic growth and new jobs. Tell your members of Congress these standards should not be rolled back or delayed.
One of the most important things Congress must do when it returns in September is pass a budget that funds the federal government and prevent a shut-down on October 1. President Trump has proposed massive budget cuts (such as a 31% cut to EPA’s budget and a 26% cut to rural development programs). Congress is considering adding “riders” that would block agencies from implementing a number of important environmental and public health policies. Urge your delegation to oppose massive budget cuts, as well as any provisions that block environmental protections.
The Farm Bill is due for action next year, and members of Congress are deciding on their priorities, making this the perfect time to weigh in on the programs you care about most. Urge your members of Congress to:
- Protect funding for programs that support rural economies, such as farm-to-school, farmers market promotion, support for beginning farmers and ranchers, rural renewable energy programs, and rural business development grants;
- Restore competitive livestock markets and increase anti-trust enforcement; and
- Reform ag credit and crop insurance policies to make sure these programs benefit family farms.
Negotiators from the U.S., Mexico, and Canada beginning talks to renegotiate the North American Free Trade Agreement. Urge your members of Congress to support a NAFTA replacement that includes:
- Strong, binding and enforceable labor and environmental standards;
- Requires imported food to meet U.S. safety standards;
- Reinstates country-of-origin labeling for meat;
- Defends “Buy America” and “Buy Local” programs; and
- Eliminates the power of multinational corporations to sue governments over public interest protections before tribunals of corporate lawyers. In other words—urge your members of Congress to support a NAFTA renegotiation that puts people over the profits of corporations.
Clean and Renewable Energy
The momentum of clean and renewable energy, including many distributed generation sources, end use management, and efficiency, is propelling us toward the future. States that have embraced policies that support clean and renewable energy are seeing lower electric rates for their residents. Tell your members of Congress not to block market access for clean, efficient, cost competitive renewable energy sources by subsidizing coal, or hamper access to the electricity grid for proven technologies like rooftop and community solar.
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