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Strangled by Red Tape
Posted by on July 26, 2012

Since 2009, we have seen an unprecedented surge in federal regulations. In fact, according to the Republican staff of the Congressional Joint Economic Committee (JEC), this administration has expanded red tape by 52% in completed regulations that cost the economy at least $100 million annually, compared to the previous administration over the same time frame. In 2012 alone, there have been 41,662 regulations published.  The biggest victim of this regulatory onslaught: America’s small businesses.  

During these tough economic times, federal regulations and its high costs, along with the steady threat of higher taxes, make it difficult for small businesses to invest and grow.  Duplicative and burdensome regulations not only cost our small businesses more but it also creates uncertainties that freeze businesses from hiring new employees.  This means fewer jobs and a much slower economic recovery.

Small business owners are this nation’s catalysts for innovation and job creation, as they have created 64% of all new jobs in the past 15 years, according to the Small Business Administration. However, small businesses face an annual regulatory cost of $10,585 per employee, which is 36% higher than the regulatory cost facing large firms.  Often times I hear small business owners in my district cite federal regulations, including the president’s healthcare law, as the reason why they are not creating more jobs.  According to a Chamber of Commerce Small Business Outlook survey, 78% of small businesses surveyed reported that taxation, regulation and legislation from Washington are making it harder for their business to hire more employees. 

Entrepreneurs and small business owners have toiled and built their businesses and have helped to make America the most prosperous nation in the world. Yet, rather than provide incentives for these businesses to grow and create jobs, this administration continues to expand job-crushing regulations.

The slow economic recovery further demonstrates that the policies instituted by this administration have failed. How can we expect for a President who doesn’t believe that business owners built their own business to grasp the harmful effects of red tape?

The federal government cannot, and should not, spend its way out of this economic recession, but it can create an environment in which small businesses and entrepreneurs are empowered to invest, take risks for growth, and create jobs. Returning our country on the road to economic prosperity will require one major component used by President Reagan during the 1981 – 1982 recession: reining in regulations that hinder economic growth.

As I travel throughout the district, I have the privilege of witnessing the entrepreneurial spirit of Ohio’s Fifth Congressional district. I truly believe we have the best workforce in the world, and I’ve seen it from our farmers, manufacturers, and small business owners, and our hometown banks.  In addition to 33 jobs bills the House has already passed, with many cutting the excessive red tape strangling our small businesses, this week I join my colleagues to pass another piece of legislation that provides regulatory relief for small businesses.  Specifically, the bill would reform the regulatory process to prevent any federal agency from taking a “significant regulatory action” until unemployment has reached 6% or less.

With the unemployment rate still above 8%, we need to put in place a fair system for job creators; one in which the government does not keep changing the rules. And, we can’t help the job seeker by punishing the job creator with more government red tape.

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National Healthcare Leaders Honor Congressman Bob Latta For Leadership in Healthcare Innovation
Posted by on May 03, 2012

The Healthcare Leadership Council (HLC), a coalition of leaders of the nation’s premier health care companies and organizations, honored Congressman Bob Latta (R-Bowling Green) as a “Champion of Healthcare Innovation” at an award ceremony in Washington.

“Perfecting a 21st century healthcare system that is both affordable and accessible for all Americans and that provides care of the highest quality hinges on support for healthcare innovation.  We need to constantly develop new and better ways to deliver care and link patients and consumers to the healthcare system,” said HLC president Mary R. Grealy. “We’re grateful for Congressman Latta’s leadership, dedication and hard work in advancing the quality, accessibility and cost-effectiveness of American healthcare.”

Congressman Latta was honored at the Council’s annual Healthcare Innovations Expo on Capitol Hill. The day-long event is dedicated to showcasing new developments in health care technologies, treatments and practices.  





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Latta Honors U.S. Military Service Academy Appointments
Posted by on April 29, 2012

On Sunday, April 29, Congressman Latta honored U.S. Military Service Academy Appointments for the incoming class of 2016. This year six students received appointments and were recognized at an afternoon reception with Congressman Latta and their families. 

“I am extremely proud to have nominated great students to our nation’s Service Academies,” said Latta. “I want to congratulate them for what they have already achieved in their lives and wish them the best of luck in their bright futures ahead.”

Academy Appointments

  • Brittney Wolford from Woodmore High School received appointment to the Air Force Academy
  • Joseph Curtis from New London High School received appointment to the Naval Academy
  • Marshall Kobylski from Bowling Green Senior High School received appointment to the Military Academy
  • Andrew Miller from St. John’s Jesuit High School received appointment to the Military Academy
  • Matthew Showman from Willard High School received appointment to the Military Academy


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The Truth About the President’s Energy Strategy
Posted by on March 13, 2012

White House Claim: “Domestic oil production has increased every year President Obama has been in office.”

Truth: Domestic oil production is up in spite of President Obama’s obstructionist policies. The president likes to boast that American oil production has risen, but that is due to production increases on private and state lands. Production on federally controlled lands actually declined from 2010 to 2011 by 14 percent.

White House Claim: “Since 2009, the United States has been the world’s leading producer of natural gas. In 2011, U.S. natural gas production easily eclipsed the previous all-time production record set in 1973.”

Truth: Increased natural gas production can be largely attributed to advances in new technologies that have allowed companies to extract gas from shale rock, not federal policies. In fact, natural gas production has been so successful largely because the federal government has stayed out of the way. Similar to oil production, natural gas production has mostly taken place on state and private lands where the federal government plays little to no role.

White House Claim: “Overall, oil imports have been falling since 2005, and net imports as a share of total consumption declined from 57 percent in 2008 to 45 percent in 2011 – the lowest level since 1995.”

Truth: Oil imports have declined primarily because the weak economy has suppressed demand for imports. The economy requires less gasoline when fewer people have jobs to drive to everyday. Increased domestic production from private and state-owned lands has helped, but the federal government has failed to do the same on lands and waters it controls. To meet our long-term needs and reduce reliance on oil from unstable and unfriendly countries, we need to increase domestic production on federal lands and approve the Keystone XL pipeline project to allow more Canadian oil to reach the U.S.

White House Claim: “…DOI has continued to approve plans and permits for exploration activities throughout the Gulf of Mexico.”

Truth: The administration’s moratorium in the Gulf has sent rigs and thousands of jobs permanently overseas. While the moratorium was temporary, its effects are permanently damaging to our energy security. Likewise, the administration’s current sluggish pace of offshore permitting in the Gulf is denying our ability to break free from unstable sources of oil.

White House Claim: “…in February 2012, President Obama welcomed the news that TransCanada plans to build a pipeline to bring crude oil from Cushing, Oklahoma, to refineries along the Gulf of Mexico… The Administration has also approved dozens of new pipelines to move oil and gas, including a pipeline known as the Alberta Clipper, which brings oil from Alberta, Canada, to Superior, Wisconsin.”

Truth: The president may take credit for approving oil pipelines but he rejected the one Americans are clamoring for. President Obama chose not to approve the permit needed for construction of the Keystone XL Pipeline, which, if constructed, would deliver much-needed secure and stable Canadian oil supplies to U.S. refineries. Most pipelines—including TransCanada’s southern leg of Keystone—do not require approval from the president since they do not cross international boundaries.

White House Claim: “The Obama Administration has put in place the first-ever fuel economy standards for heavy-duty trucks, and proposed the toughest fuel economy standards for passenger vehicles in U.S. history, requiring an average performance equivalent of 54.5 miles per gallon by 2025. Over time, these standards will save consumers more than $8,000 in fuel costs.”

Truth: The new fuel economy standards provide no relief until you buy a new car or truck, and are not a substitute for taking steps to reduce gas prices. Further, the higher sticker price resulting from these rules – up to $1,000 by 2016 and $3,000 by 2025 according to EPA, and higher according to outside estimates – raise questions about how many consumers will benefit from them. Indeed, the cost of these rules will force many prospective car buyers to either put off purchasing a new vehicle or to buy a used car instead of a new one.

White House Claim: “Through loan programs, DOE has supported nearly 40 clean energy projects that are expected to employ more than 60,000 Americans, generate enough clean electricity to power nearly 3 million homes and displace nearly 300 million gallons of gasoline annually.”

Truth: The White House failed to take credit for its most famous loan guarantee—Solyndra.Despite clear warning signs, the Department of Energy gave away $535 million to a solar firm that went belly-up. At the request of the White House, former Treasury official Herb Allison audited DOE's loan guarantee portfolio and found the government can expect to lose at least $3 billion.

White House Claim: “The Administration is reviewing the BRC’s recommendations carefully, and taking steps within DOE’s existing authorities to lay the groundwork for a sustainable, consent-based nuclear waste strategy.”

Truth: One of the first acts of business for the president was to shutter Yucca Mountain, making good on a campaign promise. With complete disregard for the law, the administration closed the nation’s only long-term nuclear waste disposal site, throwing away the decades of work and over $15 billion dollars in taxpayer dollars and ratepayer fees that have been spent on the repository.

Courtesy of the House Energy and Commerce Committee

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Help House Republicans pass 27 jobs bills
Posted by on February 02, 2012
Data reported by POLITICO shows our economy isn't improving. 

• The Federal Reserve has announced it will keep interest rates low through 2014, a sign of its pessimism about the pace of the economic recovery.

• The Commerce Department found the nation’s economy grew at a 2.8 percent rate in the fourth quarter of 2011, a faster pace than the rest of the year but worse than expected. If the economic growth slows in the next quarter, it will be tough to keep unemployment down.

• The Congressional Budget Office projected a wider budget deficit and rising unemployment for the rest of the year, with the jobless rate expanding to 8.9 percent by the end of the year.

• Housing remains a problem. The Case-Shiller index again found that home prices across the country fell 1.3 percent in November from October in its most recent survey.
 

The House is passing bills to spur the economy and help create jobs but the Senate and White House aren't supporting our efforts. Help us pass these bills by contacting your Senator
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Three years later: Stimulus hasn't worked
Posted by on February 01, 2012

On February 1, 2009, President Obama said when speaking on the economy, “If I don’t have this done in three years, then there’s going to be a one-term proposition.” 

Three years later, the results couldn’t be clearer. The failed policies and broken promises of the President’s trillion-dollar stimulus have made things worse. As the chart below illustrates, the policies of the Obama Administration have left Americans worse off now than before Obama took office. 


Post courtesy of Ways and Means

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Nuclear Regulatory Commission
Posted by on December 21, 2011
I serve on the Environment & Economy Subcommittee of the House Committee on Energy & Commerce, which has jurisdiction over the Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC).  The NRC is responsible for ensuring the safety of the United States’ 104 nuclear reactors, as well as managing nuclear waste.  In May, the Subcommittee held a hearing with the NRC’s Inspector General regarding the problems facing the Commission under the leadership of Chairman Jaczko.  In October, the remaining four commissioners, two Democrats appointed by President Obama and two Republicans, wrote a letter to White House Chief of Staff Bill Daley expressing their concerns about the Chairman’s ability to lead the commission moving forward.  I am concerned about the contents of this letter and will work with my colleagues on the Energy & Commerce Committee to ensure that nuclear safety, not political interests, remain the commission’s top priority.
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The Utica Shale in Ohio: Getting it Right
Posted by on October 31, 2011

On Tuesday, Congressman LaTourette and I will host a natural gas round table with Ohio regulators, shale oil and gas development companies and end-users. The discussion will focus on addressing the following three key points:

  • What are the potential economic benefits of shale development to the State of Ohio?
  • How would the economic benefits be affected from a federal/state regulatory scheme?
  • Which regulatory body (federal/state) is best suited to protect health and safety of Ohioans?

The round table will allow us to hear first-hand how shale development can spur job creation and what environmental and regulatory challenges arise with shale development and hydraulic fracturing. The information derived from the event will be useful when discussing the federal government’s role in shale development. 

To follow the round table conversation online, make sure to click here on November 1st at 10:00 a.m.

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Latta Embraces National Cybersecurity Awareness Month
Posted by on October 14, 2011

In support of October’s National Cybersecurity Awareness Month, Congressman Bob Latta (R-Bowling Green) is urging all Ohio small businesses to take cybersecurity precautions to protect themselves against cyberattacks. Congressman Latta is one of 12 members serving on the House Republican Cybersecurity Task Force.

What is Cybersecurity?

Cybersecurity is measures taken to protect a computer or computer system against unauthorized access or attack.

Why is Cybersecurity Important to Your Business?

Cybersecurity affects anyone and everyone, from individuals to the government, and poses serious threats to our nation’s infrastructure, particularly the economy. Small businesses are key contributors to the nation’s infrastructure, but they are common targets to cyberattacks. According to a2010 Symantec study, 74 percent of small and medium-sized businesses were targeted by cyberattackers in the past year. Small businesses need to take the recommended safeguards to protect themselves, customers, and the future of their company against cyberattacks.

What Can Your Business do to Protect Themselves Against Cyberattacks?

The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) has provided small businesses with ten quick cybersecurity tips to follow:

  • Train employees in security principles – Establish basic security practices, rules of behavior, and violation penalties to protect sensitive data, and business and customer information.
  • Protect information, computers and networks from viruses, spyware and other malicious code – Install, use and regularly update antivirus and antispyware on every computer.
  • Provide firewall security for your Internet connection – Install and maintain firewalls between your internal network and Internet, especially for those employees who work from home.
  • Download and install software updates for your operating systems and applications as they become available – Configure all software to install regular updates automatically.
  • Make backup copies of important business data and information – Regularly backup critical data on every computer used in your business at least once a week.
  • Control physical access to your computers and network components – Prevent access or use of business computers by unauthorized individuals by storing and locking up computers, such as laptops, when unattended.
  • Secure your Wi-Fi networks – To make sure your Wi-Fi is secure and hidden, set-up your wireless access point or router so it does not broadcast the network name, known as the Service Set Identifier (SSID), turn on the encryption so that passwords are required for access, and change the password that was on the device when it was initially purchased.
  • Require individual user accounts for each employee – Setup a separate account for each individual and require that strong passwords beused for each account.
  • Limit employee access to data and information, and limit authority to install software – Do no provide any one employee with access to all data systems, only provide them with access to the specific data systems that they needs for their jobs, and do not allow employees to install any software without permission.
  • Regularly change passwords – Passwords should be changed at least every three months because passwords will, over time, be shared.

 

 

 

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Letter to President Obama: Independent investigation needed in Fast and Furious
Posted by on October 06, 2011
Dear President Obama,

Gun trafficking across the U.S.-Mexico border is a serious issue that cannot be ignored.  However, I am greatly concerned about the details that are surfacing about the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (BATFE) Operation Fast and Furious that was a failed attempt to track this growing problem.  

Along with many of my constituents, I am disturbed by the reports of how BATFE officials were complicit in the trafficking of large quantities of firearms to gunrunners and other criminals.  Tragically, several of these weapons were found at the scene after U.S. Border Patrol Agent Brian Terry was killed during a shootout near the U.S.-Mexico border in December 2010. 

I object to the decision-making that resulted in an operation allowing weapons from illegal sales in the United States to flow into the hands of Mexican drug cartels.  I am especially concerned to hear that Attorney General Eric Holder was briefed on Operation Fast And Furious in a July 2010 memo, and I join with my colleagues in calling for you to instruct the Department of Justice to appoint a special counsel. 

As a matter of transparency, an independent investigation is necessary to reveal the full story behind Operation Fast and Furious.  The Terry family and the American people deserve to know the truth about this operation.  Thank you for your consideration of my request. 

           

Sincerely,

Robert E. Latta

Member of Congress


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