Cox Tackles Internet, Veterans, Water Needs

Hanford Sentinel
Cox Tackles Internet, Veterans, Water Needs

July 1, 2020

WASHINGTON – Representative TJ Cox (CA-21) joined House Majority Whip Jim Clyburn, members of the House Rural Broadband Taskforce and House Democrats to introduce the Accessible, Affordable Internet for All Act.

If successful, the Act would invest $100 billion to build high-speed broadband infrastructure in unserved and underserved communities to ensure that the resulting internet service is affordable.

According to the Federal Communications Commission’s (FCC) 2020 Broadband Deployment Report, 18 million people lack access to broadband, a number that most experts agree is underestimated.

The Accessible, Affordable Internet for All Act would help connect those millions of Americans to the internet regardless of their socioeconomic status or address by encouraging universal broadband access by including $80 billion to deploy broadband infrastructure nationwide,

The Act would ensure internet affordability by requiring affordable options for internet services and discounts for low-income consumers.

It would also promote internet adoption by providing over $1 billion to establish grant programs for states to close gaps in broadband adoption and include $5 billion to enable students without internet at home to participate in remote learning.

“As we continue to fight COVID-19, we must not overlook our rural communities that disproportionately feel the detrimental effects of the digital divide,” Rep. TJ Cox said. ”This investment in broadband infrastructure is a down payment on the future of almost every industry, especially Central Valley agriculture and education. I am proud to support this bill, which will bring us closer to reliable, affordable broadband access for all.”

Senators introduce legislation to benefit Vietnam veterans

WASHINGTON – U.S. Senators John Boozman (R-AR) and Jon Tester (D-MT) introduced the Forgotten Vietnam Veterans Act to expand wartime benefits to veterans who served in the Vietnam War and have been ineligible for assistance because of differences between the war era dates at the Department of Defense (DoD) and the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA).

A companion bill was introduced in the House by Rep. T.J. Cox.

Currently, DoD recognizes the Vietnam War era as Nov. 1, 1955 to May 15, 1975. The VA however recognizes the Vietnam War era as Feb. 28, 1961 to May 7, 1975. This discrepancy has prevented members of the U.S. Military Assistance Advisory Group from qualifying for war-time veterans’ benefits such as the veterans’ pension and health care.

MAAG is a designation for U.S. military advisors sent to other countries to assist in the training of conventional armed forces and facilitate military aid. More than 3,200 MAAGs served during the Vietnam War.

Cox secures wins for Central Valley water

WASHINGTON – Representative TJ Cox announced big wins for Central Valley water in H.R. 2, the Moving Forward Act, which will make game-changing investments in American infrastructure and would create millions of jobs.

The $1.5 trillion proposal will rebuild U.S. communities with infrastructure that is smarter, safer and built to last. This includes key investments to make Western water infrastructure more drought-resilient in the face of climate change.

The Moving Forward Act authorizes two pieces of legislation introduced by Rep. Cox that would repair and improve water infrastructure in the Central Valley:

  • H.R. 5347, the Disadvantaged Community Drinking Water Assistance Act, which would provide $100 million in funds for technical support and clean drinking water projects in small, low-income towns in the Western United States that are currently suffering from tainted drinking water.
  • H.R. 5316, the Move Water Now Act, which would provide $200 million in investments to repair the Friant-Kern Canal and $200 million for related river restoration infrastructure.

“When I joined Congress in January 2019, I promised I would do everything in my power to bring water to the Central Valley. We’re one step closer to delivering on that promise,” Cox said. “Now, two Central Valley water priorities are part of the largest infrastructure package in a generation. One will help cities like Huron, where families are paying $119 a month for water that doesn’t meet disinfection standards. The other, the Move Water Now Act, will help fix the Friant-Kern Canal, which is a critical facility for delivering water to farmers and families on the Eastside of the Valley.”

The Moving Forward Act has support from Delano Councilmember Grace Vallejo, Wasco City Councilmember Alex Garcia, and several organizations in the Central Valley, including the Friant Water Authority, the South Valley Water Association and Self-Help Enterprises.

Full article here: Hanford Sentinel