UTICA, N.Y. -- A total of 100 days in office – Congressman Anthony Brindisi broke down his first few months in office by the numbers in a NewsTalk with Don Shipman.
He says he introduced five bills, co-sponsored 82 bills, had four amendments passed, and solved 83 constituent cases.
Transparency for Cable Consumers Act: In the State Assembly, Congressman Brindisi led the charge against Charter/Spectrum. Now he's taken that fight to Congress. His first bill, the Transparency for Cable Consumers Act, provides better oversight of cable and internet providers and holds companies fined by a state Public Service Commission (PSC) accountable.
The Dairy and Sheep H-2A Visa Enhancement Act: Congressman Brindisi has heard from dairy farmers across Upstate New York that they need more skilled, qualified workers to help run their operations and get products on shelves. The Dairy and Sheep H-2A Visa Enhancement Act would amend the Immigration and Nationality Act to allow foreign dairy workers to use the H-2A visas program and enter the United States for an initial period of three years with an additional three-year extension period.
TRACED Act: Knocking out annoying robocallers is one area Republicans and Democrats can agree. Congressman Brindisi joined Republican Reps. David Kustoff and Lloyd Smucker to introduce the Telephone Robocall Abuse Criminal Enforcement and Deterrence (TRACED) Act to require call identity validation, increase civil penalties for robocallers, and cut down on spoofed calls.
Supporting Rural Veterans: In February, the House passed the Veterans' Access to Child Care Act (H.R. 840), bipartisan legislation to provide free child care at VA medical centers and clinics. Congressman Brindisi successfully included two amendments in the final bill: one ensuring rural veterans who receive care from Community-Based Outpatient Clinics (CBOCs) are able to access VA child care assistance, and one requiring the VA to report to Congress on child care access and eligibility challenges for veterans who reside in rural and highly rural areas. NY-22 has three CBOCs: Bainbridge, Binghamton, and Rome.
Expanding Voting Hours in Upstate New York: The House passed the For the People Act of 2019 (H.R. 1) to help fix the broken political system, reduce the role of dark money in politics, and impose new, higher ethics standards for members of Congress. Congressman Brindisi introduced and passed an amendment to expand voting hours in Upstate New York and institute rules to prevent states from reducing polling hours for people based solely on where they live.
Improving Rural Broadband: Internet access is essential in today's economy, and we need to do more to connect rural areas to high-speed broadband. That's why Congressman Brindisi included an amendment to the Save the Internet Act of 2019 (H.R. 1644) directing the GAO to issue a report about ways the U.S. government can promote the build-out of high-speed broadband infrastructure, especially in rural and other unserved areas.
COMBATING THE OPIOID CRISIS: The opioid crisis is tearing apart Upstate New York families, and we must take action to get these drugs out of our communities. In response to an increased number of opioid overdoses in Oneida and Broome counties, Congressman Brindisi joined members on both sides of the aisle in calling on budget negotiators to ensure Customs and Border Protection (CBP) has the tools it needs to keep fentanyl out of the country.
IMPROVING RURAL CENSUS COUNT: It is essential for the census to collect accurate data about Upstate New York. Congressman Brindisi led a bipartisan group of Upstate New York Congressional Representatives in a letter calling on the Census Bureau's to do more to ensure a complete count in rural areas, especially in areas without at-home mail delivery.
PROTECTING ROME LAB FUNDING: Congressman Brindisi continues to fight for Upstate New York budget priorities including perimeter security at the Air Force Research Laboratory in Rome. He asked appropriators to protect the $14.2 million appropriated last year for Rome Lab’s Anti-Terrorism Perimeter Security/Entry Control Point military construction project. The sensitive work done at the lab places it at higher risk, and ensuring these funds are appropriated will help ensure employees' safety against potential terrorist threats.