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Public Statements

Hatch Act Modernization Act of 2012

Floor Speech

Location: Washington, DC


Mr. LATTA. Mr. Speaker, I thank the gentleman for yielding.

I rise today in support of the Hatch Act Modernization Act of 2012. I want to applaud Chairman Issa for the oversight and work he has done on the Hatch Act reform during this Congress and thank him for working with me. I'm particularly pleased that the legislation before us today contains a major piece of my legislation, H.R. 498, the State and Local Law Enforcement Hatch Act Reform Act.

Currently, more than six decades since the enactment of the original Hatch Act, there is virtually no law enforcement agency that does not receive some amount or type of Federal funds. Consequently, almost all State or local law enforcement officers are covered under the Hatch Act and must quit their jobs to run for the office of sheriff. This reality discourages experienced individuals from running for the position and places a serious financial burden on them.

Reform to the current version of the Hatch Act is sorely needed. With the passage of the Hatch Act Modernization Act, we will ensure that citizens have the opportunity to elect the best candidate as their sheriff.

Further reform to the Hatch Act is still needed, but the Hatch Act Modernization Act is a step in the right direction and will do a great deal to make sure that highly qualified men and women are able to run for the office of sheriff or other elected positions.

I want to thank Congressman Tim Holden for his partnership with me in this Congress on my legislation, Hatch Act reform for State and local law enforcement officers, and I look forward to continuing to work on this issue in the upcoming Congress.


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