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chris collins

January 17, 2014 - 4:34pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in NY-27, chris collins.

Press release:

Congressman Chris Collins (NY-27) has been named to the House Subcommittee on Space, his sixth subcommittee assignment.

“It’s an honor to join the Subcommittee on Space and I am grateful for the opportunity to work to develop policies that advance our nation’s space program,” Congressman Collins said. “Western New York is home to a growing number of companies that support our space program, and I look forward to using this assignment to champion that sector."

Under the House Committee on Science, Space, and Technology, the Subcommittee on Space has legislative jurisdiction, general oversight and investigative authority on all matters relating to astronautical and aeronautical research and development.

Congressman Collins is currently a member of the House Agriculture and Small Business committees and serves as Chairman of the Small Business Subcommittee on Health and Technology.

In addition, under the House Committee on Agriculture Congressman, Collins serves on the Subcommittee on General Farm Commodities and Risk Management and the Subcommittee on Horticulture, Research, Biotechnology, and Foreign Agriculture; under the House Committee on Small Business, the Subcommittee on Investigations, Oversight and Regulations; and under the House Committee on Science, Space and Technology, the Subcommittee on Research and Technology.

January 10, 2014 - 4:57pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in NY-27, chris collins.

Press release:

After pressing for answers for months, Congressman Chris Collins (NY-27) says the IRS will not force volunteer fire departments to comply with ObamaCare’s expensive employer mandate.

The Department of Treasury sent a letter to Congressman Collins this afternoon clarifying its policy.

For months, the IRS and Obama Administration refused to answer if volunteer fire departments would be subject to ObamaCare regulations, as volunteers are classified as employees by the IRS for tax purposes.

“The uncertainty of this classification left me seriously concerned about the potential impact ObamaCare would have on volunteer fire companies across the country,” Congressman Collins said. “Today I am glad to share that our nation’s volunteer fire departments will not be crippled by unnecessary costs brought on by ObamaCare, so they can focus on the important work of protecting our communities.”

In November of last year, Congressman Collins wrote a letter to the Acting Commissioner of the IRS seeking a specific exemption for volunteer responders. Earlier this week he spoke on the floor of the House of Representatives in support of legislation (H.R. 3685) that would ensure volunteer service responders would not classified as full-time employees under ObamaCare.

January 9, 2014 - 6:09pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in NY-27, chris collins.

Press release:

Congressman Chris Collins (NY-27) spoke on the floor of the House of Representatives in an effort to protect local volunteer fire departments from ObamaCare’s expensive and burdensome mandates. Collins is a cosponsor of legislation (H.R. 3685, the Protecting Volunteer Firefighters and Emergency Responders Act), which will ensure volunteer service responders are not classified as full-time employees under ObamaCare.

“In November of last year, I wrote a letter to the Acting Commissioner of the IRS seeking a specific exemption for volunteer responders, but my office has yet to receive a reply,” Congressman Collins said. “Since the Administration will not correct this disservice to America’s volunteer EMTs and firefighters, we must act legislatively.”

For tax purposes the IRS classifies volunteer emergency responders as employees. With this employee designation, large volunteer fire departments will be subject to the ObamaCare Employer Mandate, forcing them to provide health insurance to their volunteers or pay a significant penalty.

“These unnecessary costs will cripple the strong volunteer fire community that protects Western New York and the rest of the country,” Congressman Collins said.

H.R. 3685 is sponsored by Rep. Lou Barletta (PA-11) and is currently in front of the Ways and Means Committee for consideration.

November 20, 2013 - 6:45pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in environment, NY-27, chris collins, fracking.

Press release:

Congressman Chris Collins (NY-27) criticized Governor Andrew Cuomo today on the House floor for continually delaying hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, in New York.

Congressman Collins was speaking in support of legislation to limit the ability of the Obama Administration to regulate fracking. The Protecting States’ Rights to Promote American Energy Security Act (H.R. 2728), which Congressman Collins voted for, prevents the federal government from imposing new and burdensome fracking regulations on states.

“In New York we are already facing significant challenges in regards to fracking at the state level. We do not need additional, burdensome federal regulations like those proposed by the Obama Administration, which are over-the-top and step all over the state’s authority to regulate this type of activity,” Congressman Collins said. “Federal ‘one size fits all’ regulations are designed to wrap fracking efforts in endless red tape which will do nothing but slow job creation, decrease domestic energy production and increase the cost of business. “

“States should control their own destiny when it comes to fracking,” continued Collins. “In New York, I remain baffled as to why Governor Cuomo continues to cater to the state’s fringe anti-business interests by upholding the moratorium on fracking. Across the border in Pennsylvania, the economy is growing leaps and bounds because they are taking full advantage of their strategic location along the Marcellus Shale. It is sad that New York is squandering this same opportunity.”

It is estimated that, if finalized, the new regulations being proposed by the Obama Administration will cost $345 million annually or $96,913 per fracking well.

The Protecting States’ Rights to Promote American Energy Security Act also places parameters on a current Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) study related to fracking and potential impact on drinking water resources. The bill’s provisions will help ensure the EPA study produces an objective evaluation.

“There is a real and legitimate fear that the bloated bureaucracy at the EPA will once again produce an open-ended, biased and non-transparent study,” Collins said. “For any study to be helpful to both decision-makers and scientists, it needs to contain an objective risk assessment.”

November 15, 2013 - 7:57am
posted by Howard B. Owens in NY-27, chris collins.

Press release from Rep. Chris Collins (NY-27):

“The administrative fix announced today by the President is just the latest example how misguided and unmanageable ObamaCare really is. After being intentionally misled by the White House in an attempt to sell ObamaCare, 137,000 people in Western New York alone recently learned their insurance policy would be canceled under the healthcare law. Now under immense political pressure from his own party, the President is making yet another unilateral decision to change a key provision of his healthcare law.

I believe that significant changes to legislation should be made through the legislative process and that is why tomorrow the House will vote on the ‘Keep Your Health Plan Act.' While there are significant challenges to reinstate these canceled plans by the new year, we should be doing everything we can to make sure people can keep their coverage and not be forced to buy more expensive plans they do not want or need.”

November 4, 2013 - 8:37pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in NY-27, chris collins.

Press release:

Congressman Chris Collins (NY-27) is encouraging local fire departments and EMS squads to apply for federal Assistance to Firefighter Grants (AFG) through FEMA. AFG funds help fire departments and other first responders purchase critical equipment and protective gear. The funding can also be used to obtain training and other resources needed to help protect both the public and emergency personnel.

FEMA began accepting applications from eligible departments today. The application period closes on Dec. 6 at 5 p.m.

“Members of our local fire and EMS departments stand ready to assist the community at a moment’s notice,” Congressman Collins said. “It is important our first responders have access to the tools and training they need. FEMA’s Assistance to Firefighter Grants helps them do just that and I encourage departments throughout NY-27 to apply.”

More information on the AFG program can be found at: http://www.fema.gov/firegrants

October 17, 2013 - 9:19am
posted by Howard B. Owens in NY-27, chris collins.

Press release:

“Tonight (last night), the House voted to increase our national debt by over $300 billion without achieving a single spending cut. I could not, in good faith, vote in favor of this legislation which only adds billions to the credit card bill our children will be left to pay.

America has a significant and dangerous spending problem that most of Washington is content to ignore. On behalf of my constituents, I will not ignore this fact. Kicking the can down the road is what caused this problem and Washington has to muster the political courage to deal with it for the future of our country.”

October 3, 2013 - 6:15am
posted by Howard B. Owens in NY-27, chris collins.

Press release:

“Tonight (last night - ed.), the House continued to work and offer reasonable and commonsense solutions to the partial government shutdown by passing bills to fully fund the National Institute of Health for critical research and open all national parks and museums.

The American people should not be shortchanged because Washington can’t get its act together.

Unfortunately, Senate Democrats continue to slam the door on our efforts to reopen the government by refusing to talk to House Republicans and negotiate a responsible budget solution.

Congress must stop putting itself ahead of the American people. I continue to encourage my colleagues to voluntarily suspend or donate their pay, as I have, during a shutdown and refuse the special Obamacare exemptions for Congress, its staff and the White House.”

October 1, 2013 - 7:53pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in NY-27, chris collins.

Press release:

Congressman Chris Collins (NY-27) has asked House leadership to suspend his own pay during the duration of the partial shutdown of the federal government. Late last night, Collins sent a letter to House administration requesting that his pay be withheld for the length of the shutdown.

This comes after Collins announced growing support for his bill that would suspend pay for all Members of Congress during a government shutdown. Eighteen members of the House have signed onto the Government Shutdown Fairness Act.

“The American people sent us to Washington to do a job,” Congressman Collins said. “If we cannot live up to that obligation, we should not be taking a pay check, a paycheck that is funded by the taxes paid by our fellow hardworking Americans. If the federal government is shut down Members of Congress should not get paid, and we should not be held to a different standard when it comes to Obamacare, either.”

Last night, Collins voted for a measure that fully funds the government and eliminates any special treatment and exemptions from Obamacare for Congress and its staff, as well as the President and his appointees. The Senate refused to act on the proposal.

“The American people deserve more from their Congress and it is time, as Members of Congress, that we put ourselves at the back of the line and put our constituents first,” Congressman Collins said.

September 25, 2013 - 10:42am
posted by Howard B. Owens in NY-27, chris collins.

Press release:

Congressman Chris Collins (NY-27) has introduced the Government Shutdown Fairness Act (H.R. 3160). This legislation would stop members of Congress from receiving a salary in the event of a government shutdown.

“As members of Congress, it is our job to keep the government running, and if the government shuts down, I don’t believe we should collect a salary during that time,” Congressman Collins said. “It is wrong that members of Congress should continue to get paid while programs for veterans, seniors and many others are adversely impacted.”

This type of legislation has proven effective in the past. Earlier this year, the House passed the No Budget, No Pay Act of 2013 (H.R. 325), which said members of Congress would not be paid unless they passed a budget. Following the passage of No Budget, No Pay, the Senate adopted a budget resolution for the first time in four years.

The Government Shutdown Fairness Act is consistent with the 27th Amendment in holding salaries in escrow until the end of this Congress.

“Salary and job performance should be tied together, and if members of Congress aren’t doing their job, that should be reflected in their salary. The American people deserve more from their Congress and it is time, as members of Congress, that we put ourselves at the back of the line and put our constituents first in a government shutdown,” said Congressman Collins.

September 14, 2013 - 10:57am
posted by Howard B. Owens in County Airport, NY-27, chris collins.

Press release:

Congressman Chris Collins (NY-27) announced today additional grant funding for the Genesee County Airport and a separate grant for the Le Roy Airport.

The Genesee County Airport is receiving a $200,000 federal grant from the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) to build a new terminal building. According to the FAA, the existing terminal has "exceeded its useful life" and needs to be replaced. Earlier this week, Collins announced additional FAA grants for the Genesee County Airport totaling more than $1 million. That money will allow the County to relocate the airport’s apron and design a new taxiway.

Collins also announced $137,773 in federal funding for the Le Roy Airport (Le Roy Aviation Services). The money will allow the airport to remove trees and other obstructions near the Runway 10 approach to ensure clear navigation and enhance safety.

September 13, 2013 - 4:09pm
posted by Don Lovelace in steve hawley, GCEDA, chris collins, Bonduelle, Steve Hyde.

'A Complete 180': France-based Bonduelle Brings Stable Presence to Genesee County Food Processing -WBTA

"He (Daniel Vielfaure, CEO of Bonduelle Americas) said the company did not seek tax breaks from the county to complete the acquisition because simply, assistance wasn’t needed. They used a “hurry-up offense” – a football analogy Vielfaure used – to get the seeds in the ground by April to start the process as soon as possible and knew this was the best opportunity to jump right in."

 

But.... Steve Hyde is quoted a couple of times in the article, like he had something to do with this, as well as various government types all jumping in to take credit for some one else's success!

September 10, 2013 - 10:41pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in NY-27, chris collins.

Press release:

"After carefully considering the matter and waiting for President Obama to make his best case to the American people, I have decided that I will vote no to authorize U.S. military action in Syria, if and when the vote comes to the House. While I understand that this situation is very fluid, and the administration has agreed to diplomatic efforts through the United Nations, I am unconvinced that a U.S. military strike in Syria would be in the best interest of America and its allies in the region. The emergence of a non-military solution to this crisis -- as we have seen in just the last 24 hours -- demonstrates how ill-conceived and poorly thought out the President's plan has been since its inception. 

Proposing military action is one of the most serious decisions a President can make, and therefore requires a clear set of objectives and a clear exit strategy. This administration has satisfied neither, leaving us with serious questions about whether a U.S military strike in Syria will be indirectly assisting anti-American jihadist forces inside of the country and will not guarantee that Assad is unable to launch future chemical weapons attacks. 

Since the President proposed military action in Syria, and more recently since he decided to seek Congressional authorization for such action, I have received a tremendous amount of feedback from my constituents. I appreciate the more than 4,000 New York-27 residents who took time to let me know how they view this important national decision. My constituents are overwhelmingly opposed to any U.S. military involvement in Syria and after thoroughly deliberating on the matter; I believe they are justified in their opposition."

September 10, 2013 - 7:25pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in NY-27, chris collins.

Rep. Chris Collins held a telephone press conference today at 2:30 p.m. Because of the accident in Elba, I was unable to participate, but I figured other media would have it covered.

WBTA: Rep. Collins says he'll keep an open mind as Pres. Obama addresses Syria situation tonight

Rep. Chris Collins says he’s still undecided about U.S. action in Syria, but for him to approve, he says President Obama has a hard task of convincing ahead because there are still many questions.

“Tonight I will be listening very closely to hear justification and it will be a tough sell, let’s put it that way, I think to the American people as well as myself, and I’m going to keep an open mind," he said.

Collins' questions include: “What’s our response if three days after the strike (Assad) did another chemical weapons attack? What would we do if Russia shot down our missiles? What would we do if Iran attacked Israel?”

OrleansHub: Collins says district 95 percent against Syrian military action

“The American public is tired of wars,” Collins said this afternoon on a conference call with reporters. “The president will have to work very hard to convince me and the American public the wisdom of a military strike.”

The congressman has conducted an online poll and he said 95 percent of the respondents reported they oppose U.S. military action in Syria.

Collins is critical of the president’s foreign policy, which the congressman said is in “disarray.” Obama has vacillated on how to handle Syria, Collins said, ultimately allowing Russia to step in and offer to take Syria’s chemical weapons so they could be turned over to international control. Collins said he is “disappointed in the president as the commander in chief.”

The D&C: Collins says Putin's Syria proposal diminishes U.S. stature

“What I am saying is, right now the country that’s driving the solution is Russia,” Collins told reporters in a conference call. “It is Russia that has stepped forward with a proposal to eliminate the chemical weapons in Syria.”

The freshman congressman said President Barack Obama “frankly has no real solutions” and “has vacillated all over the place.”

September 9, 2013 - 1:34pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in Genesee County Airport, NY-27, chris collins.

Press release:

Congressman Chris Collins (NY-27) announced today that the Genesee County Airport, located in Batavia, will receive two grants from the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) totaling more than $1 million. The first grant, for $973,800, will fund the construction necessary to relocate the airport’s apron. An apron is the area of the airport where planes are parked, unloaded, refueled and boarded. This project includes 77,500 square feet of new pavement and the reconstruction of 44,000 square feet of existing pavement.

The second grant, for $63,000, will provide funding for the design of a new taxiway leading to the T-hangar at the airport. 

“Supporting local governments with the cost of maintaining, repairing and building critical infrastructure is an appropriate use of federal tax dollars,” Collins said. “Local taxpayers send a lot of their hard-earned money to Washington and it is only proper that we get a share of it back to assist with projects that are important to our local communities.”

The Congressman’s office remains available to assist any local government pursuing a federal grant.

September 6, 2013 - 5:20pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in NY-27, chris collins.

Earlier today, we asked the office of Rep. Chris Collins to provide us with an update on his thinking regarding the Obama Administration's request for congressional authorization to bomb Syria.

Here's a statement from Collins:

“I remain undecided on how I will vote on the authorization of U.S. military force in Syria. As I have said before, the situation in Syria is very troubling and increasingly complex. I continue to have serious questions that remain unanswered as to what the objectives of a military strike would be, which countries would stand with America militarily, and what the administration's plan would be if the strike failed to meet its objectives. My constituents continue to contact my offices voicing their opinions, the vast majority of which are against U.S. involvement, and I encourage them to continue to do so.”

August 31, 2013 - 3:09pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in NY-27, chris collins.

Press release:

“I am pleased President Obama has made the decision to consult and receive authorization from Congress before ordering the use of U.S. military force in Syria. This situation is extremely complex and it is appropriate for all the representatives of the American people to vote on this critical decision.

Speaker Boehner has called House Members to Washington tomorrow to participate in a classified, interagency briefing. I will be traveling to Washington to be a part of this important meeting.

As I said earlier this week, the situation in Syria is deeply troubling and any military response by the United States could have ramifications far beyond the Syrian border. 

Before deciding how I will vote when Congress returns to session, I will thoroughly review all of the available intelligence and learn all I can about the limited military action in Syria proposed by President Obama.”

August 28, 2013 - 11:14pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in business, Oliver's Candies, NY-27, chris collins.

Rep. Chris Collins stopped in Oliver's Candies today, but it wasn't for the famed Molly Pops. He was making one of his regular visits to small local businesses in his district.

Oliver's is also famed for -- among other things -- sponge candy, which Collins discussed at some length with Deborah Palmer, left, and Jeremy Liles. Sponge candy is another of WNY's unique foods that is little known in other parts of the country. Liles said it's probably a candy that was brought to WNY by Polish immigrants.

Anita Strollo submitted this photo of Collins at the lunch at the Senior Center today. Her mother, Serena Strollo, celebrated her 91st birthday today and Collins presented her with a Congressional certificate.

August 28, 2013 - 9:14pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in NY-27, chris collins.

Press release:

Congressman Chris Collins (NY-27) released the following statement today on potential military action in Syria:

“Today I signed a letter from Representative Scott Rigell (VA-2) to President Obama urging the President to consult and receive authorization from Congress before ordering the use of U.S. military force in Syria.

The images coming out of Syria are deeply troubling. There is also no question that the circumstances on the ground are complex and any military response by the United States will not only impact the ongoing civil war within Syria but possibly have ramifications throughout the region. For those reasons alone, I believe the President has an obligation to consult Congress and communicate with the American people about what our response should be.

President Obama himself wrote that 'the President does not have power under the Constitution to unilaterally authorize a military attack in a situation that does not involve stopping an actual or imminent threat to the nation' in a 2007 response to a Boston Globe questionnaire.

It is my hope that President Obama will remember these words and call for Congress to reconvene for discussion should he deem military action in Syria necessary.”

August 8, 2013 - 3:12pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in business, NY-27, chris collins.

Rep. Chris Collins met with a few Batavia business owners today to discuss issues small business. Collins said meetings such as this help keep him grounded and focused on issues that will help grow the economy.

The clear message from today's meeting, he said, was that small business owners are uncertain about the direction of the country, worried about tax codes, health care, availability of capital and finding a well-trained work force.

He noted economic growth has been floundering at 1.6 percent for years.

"There was a confirmation here today that uncertainty plays a big role and that uncertainty is tied directly to Washington," Collins said.

He said the message for small business owners who couldn't attend the meeting is that he's trying to do his part to get the country moving forward in a commonsense way.

That means tax reform that lowers the marginal tax rate for all small business owners to maximum of 25 percent," he said. "(It means) making sure the government doesn't shut down but that we deal with the deficits and debts of our country; bringing a level of certainty to unleash the investment that's waiting to be made if people were confident the government wasn't going to shut down, and I will continue to fight for the repeal of ObamaCare."

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