New Data Shows Health Care Reform Reducing Ranks of the Uninsured

Sep 13, 2012

New Data Shows Health Care Reform Reducing Ranks of the Uninsured

On September 12, the Census Bureau released data on health insurance coverage and the uninsured.  The data show a decline in the percentage of uninsured American from 16.3 percent in 2010 to 15.7 percent last year.  Young adults (19-25) were the age group that experienced the greatest decline in the percentage without insurance over the past year, from 29.8% in 2010 to 27.7% in 2011.

“The Affordable Care Act is already helping millions of young adults obtain and maintain private health insurance coverage,” said Rep. Levin.  “Today’s Census data  show in real terms millions of Americans are at risk of losing the coverage they have if the Republican repeal efforts are successful.”

Time Running Out for Wind Energy Tax Credit

Wind power supplies 4700 megawatts of electricity in the U.S. and employs 75,000 full-time workers, but unless Congress acts, a vital federal incentive for wind energy will expire at the end of 2012, taking as many as 37,000 American jobs with it.  The Energy Department recently release a new report highlighting strong growth in the U.S. wind energy market in 2011.

The Renewable Energy Production Tax Credit helps put our country’s vast wind resources to work, creating thousands of domestic jobs, but it is set to expire on December 31.  Rep. Levin and more than 100 other House lawmakers have cosponsored legislation [H.R. 3307] to renew the tax incentives for wind energy, but the House Republican leadership refuses to schedule a vote on the measure.

$500,000 Grant Awarded to Improve Water Quality at Metro Beach

On August 28, the Environmental Protection Agency announced a new $500,000 grant to the Huron-Clinton Metropark Authority to reduce the impact of storm water at Lake St. Clair Metropark (Metro Beach).  The grant will support the second phase of a project to renovate a 50-year-old parking lot that channels pollutants from automobiles and waterfowl into the Lake.

The grant is funded through the Great Lakes Restoration Initiative (GLRI).

“This important grant will continue a project begun last year to reduce, capture and redirect polluted storm water runoff away from the Black Creek and Lake St. Clair,” said Rep. Levin. “The Great Lakes are one of our nation’s crown jewels and it is federal support like this that is helping to ensure that always remains the case.”  Click here for more information.

The Week Ahead

The House of Representatives is back in session this week after a 5 week recess.  Despite a huge backlog of unfinished business, House Republican Leaders inexplicably plan to recess the House again within the next few days.  The unfinished work includes legislation to spur job creation, overhaul the Post Office, re-write the nation’s farm laws, and extend the Violence Against Women Act.  The House and Senate also face key deadlines in December to act on a host of tax or budget decisions.

Because Congress has yet to approve any of the annual appropriations bills that fund the activities of the federal government for Fiscal Year 2013, which begins on October 1, this week the House will pass a stop-gap 6 month extension to prevent a government shutdown.  The House will also consider legislation to renew the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA) Amendments Act, which allows the U.S. Intelligence Community to collect vital information about international terrorists overseas.