Blogs - Blogs
Tuesday, April 8, 2014

Vitter Summary Statement for Full Committee Nominations Hearing
U.S. Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works “Full Committee Nominations Hearing”
Thank you, Chairman Boxer, for convening today’s hearing, and welcome to the three nominees: Janet McCabe; Ann Dunkin; and Manual Ehrlich, Jr. While I appreciate everyone taking the time to join us today, I would like to focus on Ms. McCabe and her Agency for the next few minutes.
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Thursday, April 3, 2014

Vitter Summary Statement for Full Committee Business Meeting
U.S. Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works “Full Committee Business Meeting”
Some of the bipartisan work we will move out of committee today is the culmination of a lot of member and staff time to find agreement on important environmental issues. It is encouraging to be reminded that such achievements are possible, even on a committee that oftentimes has major disagreements on some issues – particularly environmental policy. Today we have a number of good bipartisan bills designed to protect our national estuaries, fish and marine habitat, and our water supplies, and to enhance our brownfields program, which helps communities across the country redevelop contaminated or potentially contaminated properties.
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Thursday, March 27, 2014

Vitter Summary Statement for Hearing on MAP-21 Reauthorization
U.S. Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works “MAP-21 Reauthorization: State and Local Perspectives on Transportation Priorities and Funding”
Thank you Chairman Boxer for holding today’s hearing. Getting a local and state perspective on our transportation infrastructure is critical to not only understand the state of our infrastructure and the effectiveness of current policies but also to provide the federal government with some much needed guidance.
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Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Vitter Summary Statement for Oversight Hearing on EPA's FY2015 Budget
U.S. Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works “Oversight Hearing on the Environmental Protection Agency’s FY2015 Budget Proposal”
Thank you Chairman Boxer, for convening today’s oversight hearing to review EPA’s 2015 budget proposal, and thank you, Administrator McCarthy, for being here to testify. This Committee has a fundamental responsibility to the public to review Agency actions, especially those of an Obama EPA whose hyper-regulatory actions and muddled internal operations are so far removed from the realities of the American people.
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Thursday, March 6, 2014

Vitter Summary Statement for Hearing on Preventing Potential Chemical Threats and Improving Safety
U.S. Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works “Preventing Potential Chemical Threats and Improving Safety: Oversight of the President’s Executive Order on Improving Chemical Facility Safety and Security”
Thank you, Chairman Boxer, for convening this hearing today. The chemical industry is vital to my home state of Louisiana and our nation as a whole. It is estimated that the chemical industry alone invests more than $16 billion annually in safety, health, environmental, and security programs. Through industry initiatives like the American Chemistry Council’s Responsible Care, which is a global industry effort to continuously improve employee safety and protect the health, environment and security of the communities in which the chemical industry operates, participating companies – who represent 85 percent of all U.S. chemical manufacturing capacity – have a worker safety rate nearly five times safer than the average of the U.S. manufacturing sector as a whole.
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Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Vitter Summary Statement for Subcommittee Hearing on Natural Resource Adaptation
U.S. Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works Subcommittee on Oversight “Natural Resource Adaptation: Protecting Ecosystems and Economies”
Thank you Chairman Whitehouse and Ranking Member Inhofe for scheduling today’s hearing to discuss the ecological impacts of our ever-changing climate. The issues surrounding “global warming” have a long history of claims that have sometimes undermined any constructive debate we might have on climate issues. They have also fueled a politically driven narrative where such claims, including “the science is settled,” are allowed to frustrate critical thinking. I have always said that until the science is settled, we need to look at the end goal of what the people pushing the agenda want. And their goal is to implement economically devastating federal policies that limit the use of traditional energy sources that are a major driver of Louisiana’s economy. That’s why today’s hearing is timely and important.
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Monday, February 24, 2014

ICYMI: Wall Street Journal Editorial "The EPA 'Spy' and Double Standards"
In recent weeks, U.S. Sen. David Vitter (R-La.), top Republican on the Senate Environment & Public Works Committee, has been questioning the methods used in recent investigations by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Office of Inspector General (OIG), specifically in the aftermath of the John C. Beale investigation. Below is a column by the Wall Street Journal on the “double standards” at the EPA.
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Thursday, February 13, 2014

Eye on the EPA: Less Than Thorough - Flaws in Recent EPA OIG Investigations
The Office of the Inspector General (OIG) of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) was designed to be independent of political influence while investigating and preventing waste, fraud, and abuse at the Agency. Recent reports coming from the OIG have raised concerns from the Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works (EPW) Republicans due to a lack of transparency and potential bias when crafting and researching their reports. Below are three examples showing how the OIG has failed to impartially investigate the Agency and has simply rubberstamped EPA’s controversial practices. EPW Republicans believe it is time for Congress to have more scrutiny over what is going on in the IG’s office at EPA.
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Wednesday, February 12, 2014

Vitter Summary Statement for Hearing on MAP-21 Reauthorization
U.S. Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works “MAP-21 Reauthorization: The Economic Importance of Maintaining Federal Investments in our Transportation Infrastructure”
It is good to be turning our attention to the reauthorization of MAP-21. And from discussions with Senator Boxer, we expect this hearing to be the start of another busy year focused on infrastructure, this time working together on polices to address the challenges facing our highway transportation infrastructure. Infrastructure is a critical component of our nation’s economy and our quality of life. A first-class infrastructure is fundamental to connect people and communities, and is a critical building block in developing, sustaining, and growing an economy. In 2011 alone, the US transportation system moved 17.6 billion tons of good valued at an estimated $16.8 trillion dollars. However, just last week CBO came out with their updated projections for the Highway Trust Fund. Unfortunately, the Trust Fund is accelerating towards bankruptcy faster than anticipated and action must be taken before the end of the fiscal year to avoid a nearly 100% drop in new federal funds for FY’15.
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Friday, February 7, 2014

Eye on the EPA: Others Involved in Beale Saga
In an effort to further inform the public on how convicted felon and former senior official of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), John Beale, got away with fraud and theft for at least thirteen years, EPW Republicans have conducted an exhaustive review of materials obtained through its own investigatory efforts to untangle the web of unaccountability that permeated the Agency. Specifically, EPW Republicans have put into context the actions of additional EPA officials who played a prominent role in shaping EPA’s response to Beale’s fraud.
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