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Congressman Capuano's
E-UPDATE
An update from the office of U.S. Representative Michael E. Capuano
7th Congressional District of Massachusetts


12,456 subscribers

November 22, 2017

Thankful

I want to wish everyone a peaceful and restful Thanksgiving. I hope you have a chance to gather with family and friends. It’s been quite the tumultuous year and the last few weeks of 2017 will bring many crucial legislative challenges, from tax cuts to budget issues. So much has demanded our attention since Donald Trump became President Trump. We are routinely buried by tweets and breaking news and the latest on the Mueller investigation. Last Thanksgiving, as the reality of a Trump Administration was slowly sinking in, I found myself reflecting on all the changes in policy and practice that were coming, and vowed to do everything I could to protect the interests of my constituents. I am proud that so many of you have fought alongside me this year – by showing up, raising your voices and making it clear by your actions that we will never stop advocating for what’s right. I am grateful for you.

Telephone Community Meeting

On Tuesday December 5th from 7:15 – 8:15 PM I am hosting a telephone community meeting. If you’d like to participate, just dial 877-229-8493 and use PIN 116139 at the scheduled time. To ask me a question, press *3 after joining the meeting. We’ll post an audio file of the meeting on my website at capuano.house.gov when it is available.

Temporary Protected Status

Once again the Trump Administration is demonstrating a callous disregard for immigrants. His Administration recently ended Temporary Protected Status (TPS) for Nicaragua and on Monday did the same for Haitians. Historically, the United States has granted TPS for persons from countries that have experienced natural or manmade disasters – civil wars, earthquakes, volcanoes and hurricanes – so extreme that it was not safe to return to them. In 2010 an earthquake devastated Haiti. I traveled to Haiti in the aftermath of that earthquake and saw firsthand how extensive the damage was at the time. Subsequent storms and epidemics have delayed recovery. People with TPS are here LEGALLY at our invitation. They are working, paying taxes and raising their families. They have built lives here and contribute to our communities. It is heartless and cruel to tell them now that they are no longer welcome. The only encouraging news is that the Acting Secretary of the Department of Homeland Security has granted Haitians an additional 18 months so their TPS won’t expire until July of 2019. There is still time to fight back and Massachusetts will lead the way. We will do everything we can to reverse this decision.

Net Neutrality

Federal Communications Commission (FCC) Chairman Ajit Pai abruptly announced, two days before Thanksgiving that the FCC would vote to repeal net neutrality regulations in December. This is troubling and infuriating. Under net neutrality regulations internet service providers (ISPs) are treated like public utilities, or common carriers. Because of this classification, ISPs must treat all internet content the same. ISPs are prohibited from creating so-called fast lanes, charging more money for faster content delivery. This would create a significant disadvantage for small companies and make it harder for everyone to access certain internet content. ISPs could reserve the best quality internet service for big businesses and those in a position to pay more money for easier access. If you believe in net neutrality as I do, I strongly encourage you to make your voice heard with the FCC. The vote hasn’t happened yet and the FCC is still accepting commentary through its website.

Behind the Curtain — More House and Trump Administration Actions You Don’t Want to Miss

Here are this week’s additions. If you need to catch up or share with friends, you can find the full list here.

  1. In November 2017 the State Department announced it will no longer accept applications for the Central American Minors (CAM) refugee program. Under this program young persons could be interviewed in their home countries to request refugee status based on fears of violence or persecution. The CAM program also allowed parents who are legally in the United States to seek refugee status for their children. The program gave eligible children the opportunity to seek safety in the U.S. Now, children trying to escape gang and domestic violence have no clear path out. If they choose to flee, their journey is certain to be more dangerous. Some won’t survive. Others will be caught by criminals and trafficked. This is a callous decision that puts young lives at risk.
  2. According to November 2017 news reports, the Mine Safety and Health Administration (MSHA) is delaying the implementation of worksite inspection rules that were drafted during the Obama Administration. One of these rules requires management to conduct safety inspections at the beginning of a shift or work day. Instead, MSHA would let mining officials determine when to conduct the safety inspections. A safety risk could be present but go undetected for all or part of a shift because management would no longer be required to ensure that working conditions are acceptable before employees are on site. MSHA is also considering eliminating a rule requiring workers to make note of safety hazards they identify during their shift if those safety hazards are immediately resolved. This clearly puts workers at risk. If the safety hazard involved a piece of equipment that was repaired on the spot, that same piece of equipment could break again but there would be no record to alert workers that there had been a problem with it.
  3. According to November 2017 news reports, numerous Justice Department employees are assigned to lawsuits that involve President Trump’s private business interests. This is a clear misuse of taxpayer dollars for the President’s personal interests. While the Justice Department certainly is responsible for defending the office of the President in court, these cases involve his private businesses. The President has refused to completely separate himself from his business interests and this has presented legal issues, including lawsuits. Now, lawyers from the Justice Department are essentially defending Trump’s decisions not to separate himself from all his business interests and taxpayers are paying for it.

What’s Up Next

The next House votes are scheduled for Tuesday November 28th. At this writing, a list of legislation to be considered is not available.

Mike


Congressman Mike Capuano
7th District, Massachusetts
Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure
Committee on Financial Services

P.S. I welcome your feedback on our e-Updates. Please let me and my staff know what you think of this service by e-mailing our office.


District Offices:

110 First Street, Cambridge
Roxbury Community College Campus Library, Room 211, Boston
Stetson Hall Room 124, 6 South Main Street, Randolph

District Office Phone:

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DC Office:

1414 Longworth Building, Washington, DC 20515

DC Office Phone:

(202) 225-5111

Website and e-mail:

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