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DECEMBER TO-DO LIST
The House and Senate are back in session for the next few weeks with a long list of things to accomplish before the end of the year. Short-term items include a government funding bill as well as reauthorization of the National Flood Insurance Program, both of which are set to expire December 8. Congress must also pass a FY2018 budget but first an agreement must be reached on budget limits for defense and non-defense spending. A short-term spending bill might kick the can down the road later in December, but these are big issues that need to be sorted out before the end of the year.

And while Congress has until March 6, 2018 to enact permanent legislation for DACA recipients, I will continue to push for this legislation to be included in an end-of-year package. Another important item is reauthorizing full funding for the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) and Community Health Centers (CHCs). Many Colorado families are at risk of losing critical health care coverage if these programs aren’t funded. This has never been a partisan issue in the past, and it shouldn’t be now.

Lastly, Republicans remain adamant that they pass a tax package by the end of the year. Because the House and Senate passed different versions of the tax package, the legislation now goes to conference committee to sort out the differences. Then the House and Senate will have to both vote on the final legislation before it can pass.

The 1986 tax reform effort took two years to complete after dozens of committee hearings and markups. If Congress is serious about passing tax reform, we should take the time to get it right, rather than rushing it through.


PROTECTING OUR PUBLIC LANDS

This week, President Trump signed a proclamation to reduce the size of two national monuments in Utah – Bears Ears National Monument and Grand Staircase-Escalante. The Trump administration has made a concerted effort to roll back federal protections of public lands and even to devolve certain federal lands to state or local control.

This type of attack on our public lands and national monuments is unprecedented. Coloradans cherish our public lands and understand they are part of what makes Colorado special and a significant contributor to our state’s economy. We need to protect our public lands and keep them public so everyone has access to the great outdoors and to help preserve them for future generations.

I will oppose any effort to remove protections from federal lands in Colorado and will continue to follow this issue closely moving forward.


aN OPEN AND TRANSPARENT INTERNET

Last week, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) released a plan to repeal protections ensuring an open and transparent internet. The current rules were established in 2015 after years of industry and public comment and ensure the internet remains a tool for families, businesses and communities all around the world. 

I support the 2015 net neutrality rules and oppose the FCC Chairman’s attempt to dismantle these important protections to ensure equal access to the internet without interference. I will continue to support an open and transparent internet where everyone has fair and equal access.

To comment on the FCC’s proposal, which is scheduled for a vote on December 14th, visit https://www.fcc.gov/ecfs/search/filings?proceedings_name=17-108. You will need to include the official docket number 17-108 in your filing. You can also call 1-888-225-5322 to leave a comment for the FCC on this proposal.                               


HAVE YOU ENROLLED YET?

Open enrollment for 2018 Colorado health insurance coverage began November 1 and will run through January 12, 2018. However, to ensure you have coverage starting January 1, 2018, consumers need to secure coverage by December 15, 2017. If you sign up for coverage between December 16, 2017 and January 12, 2018, your coverage will not take effect until February 1, 2018.

Visit Colorado’s health exchange, Connect for Health Colorado, for more information and to enroll today. Connect for Health Colorado is also hosting various events across the state to assist with questions and enrollment. Click here for a full list of events, including several in the 7th Congressional District.


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