Most of the year, Members of Congress must travel to Washington, DC to vote on important issues. In August Congress is out of session and not voting, which gives Members of Congress an opportunity to meet with constituents to get their view on issues of local and national importance. I'd like to share with you highlights from a few recent meetings and events.
I appreciate the opportunity to learn about the exciting innovation and success of small businesses here in Central Washington. I visited Pacific Steel & Recycling in Kennewick, which is an employee-owned company that recycles products ranging from automobiles to washing machines. These recycled products can then be turned into new products for sale. In Grant County, I toured Ephrata Machinery, Inc., which makes machine parts and provides maintenance services to a variety of construction and agricultural businesses in the area and globally.
I recognize that small businesses are the job creators that drive our economy and I believe it is important to listen to local entrepreneurs and learn about the challenges that they face. Throughout my visits, it remains clear that a government takeover of health care, coupled with the threat of looming tax increases and burdensome federal regulations, pose a great risk to job creation and economic recovery.
Agriculture is a key part of our economy in Central Washington. I was pleased to be able to meet with a number of growers from throughout Central Washington who grow a variety of crops to learn about the most significant challenges to their businesses. I also sat down with representatives from several seed companies while in Connell that shared their concerns about the policies of federal agencies charged with re-seeding federal lands with native grasses after wildfires.
On August 22nd, I attended the Tri-Cities Regional Chamber of Commerce luncheon and discussed a number of issues important to our country. This included efforts in the House of Representatives to address our crippling national debt and reform programs such as Social Security and Medicare to preserve them for future generations while ensuring benefits remain the same for those in or near retirement.
I appreciate that so many people I represent take time to share their views with me. The easiest way to contact me is through my website at www.hastings.house.gov where you can email me and also sign up to receive newsletters.