Taking a stand for American-made energy and job creation, the U.S. House of Representatives today approved the Domestic Energy and Jobs Act, H.R. 4480, with bipartisan support by a vote of 248 to 163. This important energy and jobs package, sponsored by Rep. Cory Gardner (R-CO), includes key measures advanced by the Energy and Commerce Committee to increase American energy supplies and cut through regulatory red tape that could drive up gasoline prices. The bill also includes several legislative proposals from the Natural Resources Committee designed to help create jobs by removing barriers to domestic energy production.
"This bill is truly a win-win -- the steps it takes to expand supplies of affordable domestic energy will create many jobs in the process," said Energy and Commerce Committee Chairman Fred Upton (R-MI).
"The seven bills in this package provide an opportunity for job growth and energy security. These bipartisan pieces of legislation make sure that we move forward on oil and gas development in the western United States and on federal lands, and that we take steps to ensure our nation relies on American-made energy, provided by American jobs," said Gardner.
Title I of the bill, the Strategic Energy and Production Act, was authored by Gardner to promote long-term supply solutions over short-term political gimmicks. The bill dictates that the president cannot tap the Strategic Petroleum Reserve without taking steps to open more public lands to energy development. Congress created the SPR after the 1970's Arab oil embargo to mitigate major supply disruptions. The reserve is intended for national security emergencies, major supply shutdowns, and natural disasters--not shortsighted political expediency.
Title II of the bill, the Gasoline Regulations Act, was authored by Energy and Power Subcommittee Chairman Ed Whitfield (R-KY) to achieve a better understanding of the impact of EPA's policies on gas prices, jobs, and the economy. The legislation requires an interagency committee to study how certain EPA regulations will affect American businesses and consumers and puts a pause on three of EPA's most costly rules until the study is completed and policymakers have time to assess the consequences.
"Although gas prices are heading down, they are still almost double what they were when President Obama entered office in 2009," said Whitfield. "It is vitally important to our energy security and our economy, to ensure we do not implement regulations that will have a devastating effect on jobs or cause the price of gasoline to go even higher. And this legislation addresses those important needs."
The Domestic Energy and Jobs Act also includes the Planning for American Energy Act, the Providing Leasing Certainty for American Energy Act, the Streamlining Permitting of American Energy Act, the National Petroleum Reserve Alaska Access Act, and the BLM Live Internet Auctions Act.