Reports To The Valley
Report to the Valley: January 2, 2018
Supporting Net Neutrality
We need Net Neutrality regulations to prevent Internet Service Providers (ISPs, like Verizon, Time Warner, and AT&T) from slowing down some websites while speeding up rival websites.
You should have access to whatever sites you want, and the ISP shouldn’t be demanding payment from some websites while threatening to slow down their content. Such payments would just be passed along to consumers as higher prices, and start-up websites that can’t afford the payment will be snuffed out before they can become popular.
That’s why I have consistently voted for Net Neutrality. Unfortunately, last month the FCC voted to repeal the Obama administration’s Open Internet Regulation.
Accordingly, I will be introducing legislation to overturn this decision and reinstate the Open Internet Regulation.
I will continue to work to ensure that the internet remains a free and open marketplace that encourages innovation and supports competition.
Need Help with the Affordable Care Act?
Covered California is the Obamacare agency for our state. If you or your family members do not receive health insurance through your employer, Medicare, or Medi-Cal – then you can sign up through Covered California during the open-enrollment period which ends January 31.
Covered California has provided a professional Health Care Navigator to be at my Sherman Oaks office (5000 Van Nuys Blvd #420, Sherman Oaks) on Thursday, January 18, 2018, from 9 a.m. The Navigator will walk you through the process of evaluating and choosing the best health care plan for you and your family. RSVP by calling (818) 501-9200 or sign up at BradSherman.house.gov/Navigator
Protecting the Valley from Wild Fires
Last month, the Valley filled with smoke as it was surrounded by destructive wildfires which burned over 250,000 acres. I was constantly in touch with the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) and California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection (Cal Fire) to ensure that the local, state, and federal governments provided all necessary resources to protect our community.
At the outset of the fires, I joined several of my colleagues in urging the President to support Governor Jerry Brown’s request for a federal emergency disaster declaration. The next day, President Trump approved a California emergency declaration, freeing up needed federal funds to assist in combatting wildfires. This declaration enabled FEMA to provide assistance for emergency measures to save lives and to protect property, public health, and safety.
Thankfully, our brave firefighters were able to keep the fires out of the areas I represent – the West and South San Fernando Valley. These heroes worked around the clock and risked their lives to keep us safe, and Congress must do everything possible to assist them. That is why I cosponsored legislation to authorize federal grants that ensure local fire departments have the necessary equipment, personnel, and training to respond to fires.
I also cosponsored the Federal Firefighters Fairness Act. This bill would change federal policy to consider illnesses associated with firefighting, like heart and lung disease, to be job-related if diagnosed within 10 years of working as a firefighter.
Report to the Valley: December 15, 2017
Congressman Brad Sherman: Town Hall Meeting
Congressman Sherman wants to hear your views on the economy, taxes, the national debt, education, Social Security and Medicare, and all of the issues facing Congress. So join your fellow Valley residents at his upcoming Town Hall Meeting. His two most recent Town Halls attracted over 1,000 people each.
Congressman Sherman’s constituent services staff will be on hand to help you address any problems you may have with a federal agency.
The event, parking, and refreshments are free.
Sunday, January 21, 2018
3:00 – 4:30 p.m.
Reseda High School
18230 Kittridge Street, Reseda
Why I Voted Against the Republican Tax Bill
Last month I voted against the House Republican tax bill. In fact, I have been working to defeat it for months. You can see my relevant floor speeches at www.youtube.com/CongressmanSherman.
According to the Congressional Budget Office, the tax bill will increase our deficit by at least $1.7 trillion. Deficits matter. America has a limited pool of capital. If the government goes into that pool and “borrows” trillions of dollars, it means less money is available to finance new factories, innovative research, and small businesses. This means fewer jobs, lower wages, and lower productivity. Deficits are forever. Our grandchildren will be paying higher taxes to pay the interest on the additional debt. Forever.
Home Values. At a recent hearing, the chief economist for Moody’s Analytics responded to my questions by projecting double-digit reductions in Valley home values if the tax bill is adopted. That’s because new buyers will face sharp limits on the mortgage interest deduction, as well as a cap on the deduction for property taxes. Many Valley families have their entire savings tied up in the value of their home, and a double-digit decline in value could wipe out their equity.
The bill eliminates the deduction for state income taxes, as well as the personal exemption (the $4,150 deduction you get for each family member). It also takes away the deduction for casualty losses for those who lose their homes in fires, floods, and earthquakes. It eliminates the deduction for those with extraordinary medical expenses.
However, I must concede the bill will encourage investment and create jobs – in China. It provides that the income from a factory is completely free from federal taxes if the factory is located overseas. And the cost of moving a factory to China is entirely tax-deductible. (In contrast, if an individual needs to move 50 miles to keep her job, she will no longer be able to deduct moving expenses.)
But perhaps we in the Valley shouldn’t be selfish. Perhaps the bill is worthy of support because it reduces taxes for the Trump family by over $1 billion in estate taxes and tens of millions each year in income taxes, according to a report filed by MSNBC.