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Press Release

Johnson, Lamborn Introduce Legislation To Protect Jobs, Help Stop Obama Administration’s War on Coal

Ends the Administration’s wasteful, mismanaged rewrite of coal production regulations

Representative Bill Johnson (OH-06) and Energy and Mineral Resources Subcommittee Chairman Doug Lamborn (CO-05) today introduced H.R. 2824, the Preventing Government Waste and Protecting Coal Mining Jobs in America Act. This legislation would protect American jobs, save taxpayer dollars, and support U.S. energy production by stopping the Obama Administration from imposing coal regulations that would cost thousands of American jobs and devastate local economies.

Since taking office, the Obama Administration has been conducting a sweeping rewrite of a coal mining regulation (the 2008 Stream Buffer Zone Rule) that will cost jobs and decrease American energy production. The Administration has spent nearly $9 million taxpayer dollars working to rewrite this rule, including hiring new contractors, only to dismiss those same contractors once it was publically revealed that the Administration’s proposed regulation could cost 7,000 jobs and cause economic harm in 22 states.

“I am proud to be introducing the Johnson-Lamborn legislation that will save American taxpayers millions of dollars and protect thousands of coal jobs from this Administration’s assault on the coal industry. Many areas of the country depend on coal mining to employ thousands of hardworking Americans; yet, the President has shown a blatant disregard for his actions against the industry. His rewrite of the Stream Buffer Zone Rule has frivolously wasted taxpayer dollars, and has put American jobs in danger. Today, we begin a legislative approach to stopping the War on Coal, and put in place regulations that are more realistic and effective for both businesses and the environment,” said Rep. Johnson.

“America’s vast coal resources, the largest in the world, support U.S. job creation, economic growth, and affordable energy. However, the Obama Administration’s proposed rewrite of the Stream Buffer Zone Rule and other burdensome regulations threaten the jobs of thousands of hardworking coalminers and tens of thousands of jobs associated with the industry. And while coalminers are losing their jobs, the regulatory uncertainty created by the Obama Administration is stifling investment and leaving states to issue permits under outdated laws,” said Subcommittee Chairman Lamborn. “Much of the blame for uncertainty and job losses lies with the Administration’s arbitrary decision to throw out 2008 coal mining rule and instead embark on a re-write that has been secretive, reckless and has already wasted $9 million of taxpayer money. Our legislation will stop the Administration from implementing their job-destroying rewrite and restore certainty to the industry, lower energy costs, and create jobs. I hope to advance this legislation quickly and plan to hold a legislative hearing on the bill next week.”

For over two years, the House Natural Resources Committee has conducted aggressive oversight into the Obama Administration’s rewrite of the Stream Buffer Zone Rule, which has exposed gross mismanagement of the rulemaking process, potential political interference, and widespread economic harm the proposed new regulation would cause. Visit /oversight/coalregs/ to learn more about the Committee’s investigation and read the staff report entitled, President Obama's Covert and Unorthodox Efforts to Impose New Regulation on Coal Mining and Destroy American Jobs.

The Energy and Mineral Resources Subcommittee will hold a legislative hearing on this legislation on Friday, August 2, 2013 at 10:00 AM.


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