Job creation is concern No. 1 in district

Published 11:00 pm Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Last week, I spent more time traveling through our district to participate in meetings and take questions about a number of important issues that affect our area. Regularly traveling around the district continues to provide me with a wonderful opportunity to listen to those that I represent so I can take their concerns directly to Washington. We have now participated in more than 300 meetings, events, and town halls since the start of the 112th Congress.

Without question, the number one issue that affects our nation and our state is the slow pace of job creation. I am especially aware of this fact after the discussions that I frequently have with small business owners and employers in our area. They often tell me of the many barriers that prevent job creation and about the costly and burdensome federal regulations that stand in the way of private sector growth.

Harsh government restrictions imposed by the health care law and strict requirements implemented by the Environment Protection Agency are a few examples of federal regulations that drive up operating costs and hinder job growth. A few good rules enacted to ensure public safety and to protect our environment are necessary. However, we must stop unreasonable and heavy-handed restrictions that hurt job growth in some of our nation’s most critical industries.

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We should never forget: government does not create jobs; the private sector creates jobs. To spur economic growth, we need to eliminate the red tape that limits the private sector’s ability to get Americans back to work.

Targeting specific ways to deregulate businesses and energize job growth remains a top priority for me. Since entering Congress, my House colleagues and I have supported initiatives that encourage growth by deregulating businesses. Early last year, we introduced a jobs agenda (, and, to-date, we have passed nearly 30 bipartisan pro-growth jobs-bills that ease federal constraints on employers. If enacted into law, these bills would significantly curtail the flow of new regulations, promote confidence in the market, and help create an atmosphere ripe for job creation.

To get the economy moving, we need to look for ways to help businesses succeed and grow. This means giving business owners the means to cut through unnecessary red tape. Visit my Web site at Roby.House.Gov to learn about numerous job-growth bills passed in the House, listed under “Voting Scorecard”.

Taking Questions at a “Meet with Martha”

My visits with individuals, groups, and business leaders throughout our area last week included a “Meet with Martha” in Elmore. I frequently hold these meetings to foster and encourage an open discussion with those in my district. I was pleased to listen to concerns and answer questions on numerous issues, including economic growth, the economy, health care, and the federal budget. These important issues are central to the future of our country, and I certainly benefited from hearing the views of those that attended.

Several participants shared concerns regarding the federal budget and our nation’s mountain of debt. Taking questions on this critical issue provided an excellent opportunity to discuss my recently introduced legislation, the Honest Budget Act. A companion to a bill introduced last year by Senator Jeff Sessions, my legislation would establish a more transparent and honest budgeting process by addressing the nine most common budget gimmicks used in Washington. The bill, which has received broad support in both the House and Senate, would stop Congress from exploiting gimmicks that politicians routinely use to hide the truth, confuse the public, and run up the national debt.

The American people have the right to expect an honest and accountable legislative process that is free from tricks and gimmicks. By addressing commonly used budget loopholes, the Honest Budget Act will create a more open and transparent process.

District Meetings:

Thanks to the many individuals, organizations, and groups who took time to meet with me last week while I traveled across the district. I participated in various events last week, including: visiting Daniel Pratt Gin; speaking with members of the Florala Chamber of Commerce; meeting with business leaders associated with the National Federation of Independent Business; visiting MFG Alabama manufactures; meeting with members of the Alabama Housing Finance Authority; meeting with the Montgomery Chamber of Commerce and speaking with Housing and Urban Development (HUD) officials; speaking with Associated Builders & Contractors members; meeting with and taking questions with the Young at Heart group at First Baptist Church Dothan; and touring the Summerford Pallet Company.


U.S.Rep Martha Roby represents Alabama’s 2nd Congressional District.