Apr 09 2018
Over the recent state work period, I was able to travel our great state of Nebraska for two weeks. From Holdrege to Scottsbluff and Ainsworth to Norfolk, it was a busy and productive time spent with Nebraskans. During our many discussions, I heard about the benefits of tax reform, suggestions for the Farm Bill, and concerns about other issues like trade.
Working together, we have accomplished a lot for our state and its people. But there's more work to do. I look forward to taking the insight I heard back to Washington where I will continue to be a strong voice for you and achieve positive results for Nebraska.
Continue reading for more updates from my office.
Protecting Market Access for Nebraska's Producers
When it comes to Nebraska's economy, agriculture is a major driver. That's why I am very concerned about China's proposed list of retaliatory tariffs, which targets soybeans, corn, sorghum, beef, and pork. After hearing this troubling news, I immediately reached out to the administration. I spoke directly to Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue and White House Legislative Affairs Director Marc Short to emphasize the significant market loss Nebraska producers would face should these tariffs be finalized. Such action would not only hurt ag producers; it would hit our entire state because agriculture is the economic engine of Nebraska.
I also hosted USDA Under Secretary for Trade Ted McKinney and Nebraska agribusiness leaders for a roundtable at Greater Omaha Packing. We had a productive discussion. The tariffs have not gone into effect yet, and I believe there's still time to negotiate a positive outcome for our producers. When I return to Washington, I plan to meet with President Trump to discuss Nebraska's perspective on trade and the Chinese retaliation.
Standing Up for Victims of Sex Trafficking
Click here to watch my floor speech.
On March 21, the Senate passed anti-sex trafficking legislation, which contains legislation I cosponsored called the Stop Enabling Sex Traffickers Act (SESTA). Certain websites, like Backpage.com, have provided safe harbor for criminals who exploit women and children. The Senate-passed bill, which was signed into law, ensures that section 230 of the Communications Decency Act does not give blanket immunity to providers and users of websites for violations of sex and human trafficking laws. It also allows state attorney generals to take civil action against perpetrators, and it creates a new federal crime for promoting or facilitating sex trafficking over the internet.
An Irresponsible Way to Fund Government
Click here to read my full statement.
Recently, Congress passed a government spending bill. Many important policy wins for Nebraska, which I’ve worked hard on, were included in this spending package. Important agriculture-related measures like permanently eliminating animal waste emissions reporting requirements under CERCLA for producers, a longer exemption from the electronic logging device mandate for livestock haulers, and fixing a tax provision that created winners and losers in the grain market are all part of this bill.
While I strongly support all of these specific measures, I came to Washington to fight for Nebraska priorities and make hard decisions. This omnibus bill failed to make any tough choices and tried to be everything to everyone. I voted no because that is not a responsible way to fund the government.
Relief for Community Banks and Credit Unions
Click here to watch my floor speech.
Small banks and credit unions are the pillars of our local communities. Last month, the Senate worked on bipartisan legislation, the Economic Growth, Regulatory Relief, and Consumer Protection Act, which would stand up for these institutions. This legislation provides relief to small banks and credit unions by taking away regulations set by Dodd-Frank that are meant for larger financial institutions. Additionally, the bill includes bipartisan provisions I introduced to ensure Small Public Housing agencies can focus on bettering the lives of residents, instead of on unnecessary reporting requirements. I was pleased to see the Senate pass this major reform bill to protect our financial institutions on main street.
Photos of the Month
Enjoyed meeting and talking with Master Sgt. Joshua D. Malyemezian, one of our nation's 2017 Outstanding Airmen of the Year. It was an honor to thank him for his leadership and community involvement during his service with the 55th Wing at Offutt Air Force Base.
It is always a pleasure meeting with Nebraska firefighters during their trips to Capitol Hill.
Loved running into the Piro family from Lincoln during their Senate tour. If you’re planning a trip to our nation’s capital, contact my office for help setting up tours here: https://www.fischer.senate.gov/public/index.cfm/tour-requests
Met with Nebraska's future leaders from Neumana High School and Wahoo High School during their trip to Washington with Close Up.
Roundtable meeting at Greater Omaha Packing, where I was joined by USDA Under Secretary Ted McKinney and a great group of NE agribusiness leaders for a tour and roundtable discussion focused on trade and tariffs.
In Scottsbluff over the state work period, I toured Aulick Industries. This business is three generations strong and provides transportation equipment for agriculture business.
During my time in McCook, I hosted an ag roundtable with local farmers and producers. We had a productive discussion on the upcoming #FarmBill and the issues that NE producers are facing.
Thanks to the folks at the Phelps Memorial Health Center in Holdrege for the great tour. What a wonderful patient-focused facility for central Nebraska!
Spent some time over the state work period visiting the folks at Perrin Manufacturing in Alliance. Interesting to see how this Nebraska business creates durable automotive HVAC systems in their state-of-the-art facility located in western Nebraska.
Enjoyed getting to meet with FFA students at their convention in Lincoln. Impressive young Nebraskans making a positive difference for our state.