U.S. Representative Ed Royce

39th District of California
Economy and Jobs

2014 began with the news that a record 91.8 million Americans are no longer in the labor force. This is the lowest rate of labor participation in the past 35 years. Now, more than ever, we need to allow our small businesses, the job creators and the backbone of this country, to operate in an environment that encourages them to invest and create jobs.

Congress needs to reign in the federal regulations that hamper employers and entrepreneurs from investing in the future of America. With my vote, the House passed and the President signed into law legislation that prevents any tax hikes from occurring until 2013.

Also, I’ve introduced the Small Business Lending Enhancement Act this Congress. With a projected $1.6 trillion budget deficit, stimulus spending is not an option. My legislation will provide much needed financing for small businesses without spending a single tax dollar. It takes an important step in shifting our current economic path and putting Americans back to work. As a result of the Small Business Lending Enhancement Act, credit unions will be eligible to lend up to $13 billion available after the first year of enactment which would create 140,000 jobs. 

Furthermore, I am an original cosponsor of legislation recently signed into law to repeal the burdensome 1099 IRS requirement which was included in the President’s healthcare bill. The provision mandates that all companies file an IRS 1099 tax form when buying more than $600 in goods or services in a tax year. A recent National Federation of Independent Business (NFIB) Small Business Survey determined that tax paperwork, costing $74 an hour, is the most expensive burden placed on small businesses by the federal government.

We’ve got to keep our focus on getting our economy going again and this means revitalizing the private sector. Real economic growth has always and will always come from the private sector; Washington must enable business to thrive and expand.


Spending Cuts and Debt

As the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, Admiral Mike Mullen, said, “The national debt is the single biggest threat to national security.” With total U.S. outstanding debt fast approaching 100 percent of Gross Domestic Product (GDP) and the rating agency Standard & Poor’s recently changing the outlook for U.S. debt from ‘stable’ to ‘negative,’ real reforms are desperately needed. 

The previous Democratic-controlled Congress spent more money than the first 100 Congresses combined.  Spending bills were increasing government agency funding by double digits year over year.  In fact, under former House Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s leadership, the deficit grew nearly 10-fold (from $161 billion to $1.55 trillion).

Failure to operate within our means has plunged our nation deeper and deeper into debt. House Republicans, however, refuse to kick the can down the road.  Recently, I voted for and the House passed H.R. 2560, the Cut, Cap, and Balance Act of 2011. This legislation cuts current spending, caps future spending, and requires Congress to establish a Constitutional balanced budget amendment to keep Washington’s spending in line.  Bottom line, it requires the federal government to spend within its means.  Specifically, the Cut, Cap, and Balance Act cuts $110 billion next year and $6 trillion over the next decade.  Additionally, it scales back total federal spending to bring the size of government back below 20% of GDP – the average for the last three decades.  Click here for more information on the Cut, Cap and Balance Act.

Also, we’ve passed legislation that cuts $6 trillion in spending over the next decade and balances the budget., a repeal of the burdensome tax provisions for small businesses and the rescinding of $8 billion in TARP funds.

Again, more needs to be done.  That is why I have also authored legislation that would rid the government of useless and duplicative programs, I have cosponsored a balanced budget amendment to the Constitution, and I support a cap on total federal spending. Rest assured, I will continue to fight to cut spending until we balance our budget and eliminate our national debt. 

If we are serious about addressing this looming budgetary crisis and getting our economy on solid footing, now is the time to make the hard choices.  

Energy Independence

In the 112th Congress Republicans unveiled the American Energy Initiative. The initiative consists of three general guidelines to address the high cost of energy: 1.) Stop government policies that are driving up gas prices and threatening jobs 2.) Expand American energy production to lower costs and create more jobs 3.) Promote an ‘all of the above’ approach to increase all forms of American energy.
Our economy is 80 percent dependent on foreign energy sources for gasoline, most of which we get from hostile countries. Over the next ten years, if no action is taken to increase domestic energy sources, it is estimated that we will spend $10 trillion on foreign oil, much of it going to Saudi Arabia, Iran, Venezuela, and other OPEC countries.

The OPEC oil cartel controls more than three quarters of the world’s global oil reserves and severely restricts both supply and access to its oil fields. This has caused a dramatic spike in the price of oil, which not only hits consumers at the pump, but harms nearly every aspect of the economy.

In California, 31 energy projects have been delayed or cancelled.  These potential projects include a variety of gas, solar, wind and bio-fuels.  Regulatory barriers, an inefficient review process, and continual threats of legal action create a business environment unsuitable for energy expansion and development.  The first step of increased energy production is allowing companies to begin production.

I am a co-sponsor of the “Defending America’s Affordable Energy and Jobs Act” which prevents Washington bureaucrats from implementing the federal Cap and Trade plan.  This bill removes dozens of current EPA regulations which unnecessarily drive up energy costs and inhibit job creation.  This bill also prevents state legislatures from taxing greenhouse gas emissions.  Removing these regulatory burdens is necessary to allow businesses to flourish and develop alternative means of energy production.

Renewable and clean energy sources like nuclear, wind, solar, and lithium-ion car batteries for electric hybrids will provide the base of our energy supply in the future. New, clean technology is doubling car battery capacity every two years for hybrid vehicles. Improvements in vehicular fuel efficiency have also helped, benefiting the environment and lessening our reliance on oil. In the interim, however, it is vital that we tap into our natural resources. A now restricted Alaskan site has an estimated 10.6 billion barrels of oil, and the oil shale reserves in Colorado, Utah, and Wyoming hold nearly 1.8 trillion barrels of crude oil, but are closed to exploration.

It is essential that we utilize our nation’s vast energy supplies. At the same time, we should continue to develop new, clean technology. This would significantly reduce our dependence on foreign oil. Doing so sooner rather than later is both an economic necessity and vital to our national security.