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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


8,285 subscribers

May 2, 2014

Green Line Extension (GLX) News

On Monday I hosted U.S. Department of Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx at the site of the future Union Square Green Line T stop. I invited Secretary Foxx to join me and other GLX advocates along the planned route so he could see for himself just how important this project is to the region. MA DOT Secretary Rich Davey, Somerville Mayor Joe Curtatone, Regional Federal Transit Administration Director Mary Beth Mello and MBTA General Manager Beverly Scott also joined us. While there is still much to be done, great progress is being made on securing full funding and completing necessary preconstruction work. More good news was announced Wednesday with the confirmation that the Community Path, which will run along the GLX, will also be funded. This is great news for both pedestrians and bicyclists. I have been strongly advocating for the inclusion of the Community Path as an integral component of GLX construction. I have been concerned that if the work is not done in conjunction with the transit expansion, it could lead to years of delay. I have long believed that establishing a pedestrian and bike link along the new route is an essential component of this long-awaited project.

Health Care

This week the House considered H.R. 4414, the Expatriate Health Coverage Clarification Act. This legislation essentially seeks to exempt expatriate health insurance plans from compliance with the Affordable Care Act (ACA). Supporters argue that requiring U.S. expatriate health insurance plans to comply with the ACA places them at a disadvantage because they are competing with foreign expatriate health insurance providers who are not subject to the ACA. However, the bill allows employers to designate their employees as “expatriates” based on an estimate of time to be spent abroad, not on the actual time that an employee spends working abroad. H.R. 4414 includes no reporting requirements for employers, making it difficult to determine how many employees are impacted. The legislation doesn’t do enough to ensure that employees with expatriate health insurance plans have access to the protections mandated in the ACA. The Administration does not support H.R. 4414 and has raised concerns that it weakens consumer protections. I voted NO. H.R. 4414 passed and the entire vote is recorded below:

  YEA NAY PRESENT NOT VOTING
REPUBLICAN

208

17

0

7

DEMOCRAT

60

133

0

6

TOTAL

268

150

0

13

MASSACHUSETTS
DELEGATION

1

8

0

0

Appropriations

This week the House began consideration of FY 2015 appropriations bills with H.R. 4486, the 2015 Military Construction and Veterans Affairs Appropriations Act. H.R. 4486 comes close to fully funding the President’s FY 2015 request, making investments in staffing and record keeping for the Veterans’ Benefits Administration (VBA), family housing construction and prosthetic research. I voted YES. H.R. 4486 passed and the entire vote is recorded below:

  YEA NAY PRESENT NOT VOTING
REPUBLICAN

225

1

0

6

DEMOCRAT

191

0

0

8

TOTAL

416

1

0

14

MASSACHUSETTS
DELEGATION

9

0

0

0

Yesterday the House considered H.R. 4487, the 2015 Legislative Branch Appropriations Act. This bill provides funding for the Capitol Police, Congressional Budget Office, Member budgets, and other offices related to the operations of the Legislative Branch of government. H.R. 4487 provides the same overall funding level as last fiscal year. I voted YES. H.R. 4487 passed and the entire vote is recorded below:

  YEA NAY PRESENT NOT VOTING
REPUBLICAN

218

9

0

5

DEMOCRAT

184

5

0

10

TOTAL

402

14

0

15

MASSACHUSETTS
DELEGATION

9

0

0

0

What’s Up Next Week

The next votes are scheduled for Tuesday May 6th. The House is expected to consider H.R. 4438, the American Research and Competitiveness Act and H.R. 10, the Success and Opportunity Through Quality Charter Schools Act.

Mike


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

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