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Mr. COSTA. Mr. Chairman, I would like to thank our Republican colleagues for giving us time to speak on this important bill.
As we've discussed, H.R. 2401, the underlying bill, is one that is important and appropriate that we consider at this time. I support the underlying legislation. And also as my colleague, Congressman Matheson stated, while it's okay to have strong feelings on this measure, it's not appropriate to overstate in fact what this legislation does.
This measure requires the creation of an interagency committee to study the effects of the current and proposed regulations put forth by the Environmental Protection Agency that together have major effects not only on our way of life but on our economy, our economy which at this point in time is in a very fragile recovery period.
For too long, constituents that I represent, farmers, farm workers and small businesses in the San Joaquin Valley, have had to shoulder the burden of mounting regulations of the EPA. They've worked hard to meet stricter standards, and we're making progress. We've made great progress in cleaning up the air quality in the valley, even while the population is growing more rapidly than any other place in the State. Yet common sense must prevail. At some point it's time to put the brakes on regulations and understand the effects on consumers, on energy, on manufacturing industries, on electricity, on fuel prices, and our country's competitiveness in the global market.
Recently, the administration has acknowledged that many regulations are having an effect on our economy. It's time that they step up to the plate and work with the Congress for common sense to prevail.
I thank Congressmen MATHESON and SULLIVAN for introducing this important measure, and I urge my colleagues to vote in favor of it. It's not an either/or choice. We can have clean air and we can have a good, commonsense decision-making process. The two are not mutually exclusive, as some of my colleagues are suggesting. I urge that you vote for this measure. It's a commonsense way to work through these difficult issues.
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