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Brian Schatz on Budget & Economy

 

 


Got earmark to fix highway threatened by climate change

Consider the Honoapiilani Highway in West Maui, which is threatened by sea level rise. Schatz helped secure a $23 million earmark that will be used to help realign the highway before it falls into the ocean. "We're going to have to deal with climate change and it's not just about dealing with the root cause," Schatz said. "This was the first big project that wasn't just a pie in the sky sort of academic exercise, but our first real climate adaptation."
Source: Honolulu Civil Beat on 2022 Hawaii Senate race , Jul 27, 2022

Established the Hawaii Fair Share Initiative

Brian has a record of successfully promoting economic growth and job creation, not only as a legislator, but also as a businessman. Brian served as the Chair of the Economic Development Committee in the Hawaii State Legislature. As its CEO, he helped guide the 35 year-old non-profit Helping Hands Hawaii back from the brink of bankruptcy.

Brian understands Hawaii's place in today's global economy. As the Administration's point person for the 2011 Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation summit, Brian facilitated Hawaii's hosting of a trade and economic forum that brought the leaders of 21 countries and 10,000 visitors to Hawaii.

Brian also established the Hawaii Fair Share Initiative, a program to ensure that Hawaii received the millions of dollars in outside funding needed for economic recovery and state growth.

Source: 2013 Campaign website, brianschatz.com, "Issues" , Apr 15, 2013

Congress spends like drunken sailors, on the wrong things

Brian Schatz has been swimming in the state legislature for the last 8 years. Now he says he's ready for the ocean in Washington DC. "That is a room full of barracudas, and you wanna send another barracuda to fight on behalf of Hawaii," said Schatz, one of the many Democratic candidates running for the 2nd district seat in U.S. Congress.

Schatz says he'll bring youth and energy to the capital, and is thinking about Hawaii's best interests. "This U.S. Congress is spending like drunken sailors, and they're spending on all the wrong things," he said. Even though Hawaii is in the middle of the ocean, Schatz says he wants to make sure it doesn't feel that way.

Source: KHNL profile , Sep 13, 2006

We need fiscal responsibility and social responsibility

For decades, we've been fed a slogan about the role of government in our lives that many of us have come to believe--"government is the problem." Charmed by this simplistic notion, we have stood by as social programs for America's most needy get dismantled and downsized.

Meanwhile, the national debt is at an all-time high due to tax cuts aimed at the Republican base and unprecedented business subsidies. Ironically, Congress recently made it more difficult for everyday people to declare bankruptcy while it runs government like a college student with his first credit card.

This is what happens when we govern one election cycle at a time. History will forget the legions of politicians who based their success on the number of people they could please. Rather, we politicians should be judged on how we helped make society better for all.

To accomplish anything of substance, we need fiscal responsibility, we need social responsibility and we need to get off the path of least resistance.

Source: Honolulu Advertiser column by Rep. Brian Schatz , Jan 6, 2006

Voted YES on $900 billion COVID relief package.

Schatz voted YEA Consolidated Appropriations Act (COVID Relief bill)

NPR summary of HR133:

Argument in opposition: Rep. Alex Mooney (R-WV-2) said after voting against H.R. 133: "Congress voted to spend another $2.3 trillion [$900 billion for COVID relief], which will grow our national debt to about $29 trillion. The federal government will again have to borrow money from nations like China. This massive debt is being passed on to our children and grandchildren. With multiple vaccines on the way thanks to President Trump and Operation Warp Speed, we do not need to pile on so much additional debt. Now is the time to safely reopen our schools and our economy. HR133 was another 5593-page bill put together behind closed doors and released moments prior to the vote."

Legislative outcome: Passed House 327-85-18, Roll #250, on Dec. 21. 2020; Passed Senate 92-6-2, Roll #289, on Dec. 21; signed by President Trump on Dec 27 [after asking for an increase from $600 to $2,000 per person, which was introduced as a separate vote].

Source: Congressional vote 20-HR133 on Jan 15, 2020

$1.9 trillion ARPA bill for COVID relief.

Schatz voted YEA American Rescue Plan Act

This bill provides additional relief to address the continued impact of COVID-19 on the economy, public health, state and local governments, individuals, and businesses:

Rep. Kevin McCarthy in OPPOSITION (3/11/21): The so-called American Rescue Plan imposed a $1.9 trillion new burden on American families. Despite being branded as 'COVID relief,' only 9% of funds in this bill actually goes to defeating the virus, and almost half of the money, including more than 95% of the education funds, will not be spent until 2022 or later. After a year of struggle and sacrifice, students and parents get no answer to the vital question of when they can expect schools to reopen full time. President Biden wants Americans to believe 'help is on the way.' But under this bill, it isn't; waste is.

Biden Administration in SUPPORT (2/26/21): ARPA provides the tools and support critical to tackle the urgent public health and economic crises the Nation faces as a result of COVID-19. The bill also provides eligible Americans with a $1,400 payment in addition to the $600 payment provided in December of 2020. The bill also extends key emergency unemployment benefits, and raises the minimum wage to $15 per hour.

Legislative Outcome: Passed House 219-212-1 on 2/27/21; passed Senate 50-49-1 on 3/6/21; signed by President on 3/11/21.

Source: Congressional vote 21-HR1319 on Feb 27, 2021

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