Special to the Journal
WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, Congressman Sanford D. Bishop, Jr. (GA-02) issued remarks to the Congressional Record regarding the dangers of the impending sequestration, or across-the-board budget cuts, which are due to go into effect on March 1, 2013. Below you will find the text of the statement submitted for the Congressional Record.
“Mr. Speaker, throughout my twenty years representing Middle and Southwest Georgia in Congress, I have always done my dead level best to work with all of my colleagues across the aisle to find reasonable solutions for the nation’s issues.
“Today, I come before Congress to appeal to reason. Without a doubt, the across-the-board spending cuts we call sequester will undermine our economy and hurt job creation. My district, home to Fort Benning in Columbus, the Marine Corps Logistics Base in Albany, the area outside of Robins Air Force Base, and thousands of service members, veterans, families, and supporting businesses cannot sustain the cuts proposed by Sequestration.
“Furthermore, schools and teachers, law enforcement and crime prevention, public health and Head Start will be negatively impacted. The Second Congressional District of Georgia relies on these services, as do many of your districts.
“Mr. Speaker, I ask for a balanced proposal.
“We may be in the 11th hour, but we must act. We owe it to our constituents, we owe it to our districts, and we owe it to our nation.”
Over the weekend, the White House released state-by-state reports on the devastating impact that sequestration will have on jobs and middle class families across the country. The report found that:
· Military Readiness: In Georgia, approximately 37,000 civilian Department of Defense employees would be furloughed, reducing gross pay by around $190 million.
o Army: Base operation funding would be cut by about $233 million in Georgia.
o Air Force: Funding for Air Force operations in Georgia would be cut by about $5 million.
· Teachers and Schools: Georgia will lose approximately $28.6 million in funding for primary and secondary education, putting around 390 teacher and aide jobs at risk. In addition, about 54,000 fewer students would be served and approximately 80 fewer schools would receive funding.
· Head Start: Head Start and Early Head Start services would be eliminated for approximately 1,700 children in Georgia, reducing access to critical early education.
· Job Search Assistance to Help those in Georgia find Employment and Training: Georgia will lose about $873,000 in funding for job search assistance, referral, and placement, resulting in 33,160 fewer people will get the help and skills they need to find employment.
· Law Enforcement and Public Safety Funds for Crime Prevention and Prosecution: Georgia will lose about $427,000 in Justice Assistance Grants that support law enforcement, prosecution and courts, crime prevention and education, corrections and community corrections, drug treatment and enforcement, and crime victim and witness initiatives.
· Public Health: Georgia will lose approximately $925,000 in funds to help upgrade its ability to respond to public health threats. In addition, Georgia will lose about $2.5 million in grants to help prevent and treat substance abuse, resulting in nearly 2,400 fewer admissions to substance abuse programs.
· Nutrition Assistance for Seniors: Georgia would lose approximately $1.3 million in funds that provide meals for seniors.
Over the past six months, Congressman Bishop has traveled throughout the Second Congressional District holding public town-hall style dialogues in Columbus, Albany, and Macon to discuss the potential impact of sequestration on Middle and Southwest Georgia.
For information regarding Congressman Bishop’s Columbus stop on the ‘Sequester Informational Tour’ with Senator Saxby Chambliss, Senator Johnny Isakson, Major General David Bockel, leadership of Fort Benning, the Columbus Chamber of Commerce, and the public, please click here. For pictures of the event, please click here.
For information regarding Congressman Bishop’s Albany stop on the ‘Sequester Informational Tour’ with Senator Saxby Chambliss, Senator Johnny Isakson, Major General David Bockel, leadership of Marine Corps Logistics Base, the Albany Chamber of Commerce, and the public, please click here. For pictures of the event, please click here.
For information regarding Congressman Bishop’s Middle Georgia stop on the ‘Sequester Informational Tour’ with Senator Saxby Chambliss, Senator Johnny Isakson, Congressman Austin Scott, Major General Rick Goddard, leadership of Robins Air Force Base, the Georgia Chamber of Commerce, and the public, please click here.
For more information regarding sequestration’s projected impact on Georgia, please click here.