ICYMI: Congressman Allen Holds Telephone Town Hall
Congressman Rick W. Allen (R-GA-12) held a telephone town hall on Monday to answer questions from residents of Georgia’s 12th District. Congressman Allen gave an update on important issues facing our nation such as the recent GOP tax reform legislation, veterans’ legislation that has been signed into law, and his work on the House Agriculture and Education and the Workforce Committees.
For those who were unable to participate in the call, here are some of the highlights:
Beverly from Hazlehurst asked what Congress is doing to help high school students learn more about technical education:
Congressman Allen: “As a former business owner, I know firsthand the challenges of finding a skilled workforce. This is why I was proud to support legislation that passed the house in June which reinforces and strengthens our federal career and technical education support. It’s the Carl D. Perkins Career and Technical Education Act... the need is there. I agree 100% with you.”
Nancy from Dublin asked about Congressman Allen’s thoughts on the slow pace of Congress:
Congressman Allen: “Well I’m going to tell you, I don’t like the progress here one bit, and actually I’m pretty frustrated. I was very disappointed with the Senate as far as their inaction on the healthcare bill. I’m getting calls. We’re getting people, they’re signing up for their health insurance again, and we’re getting calls of premium increases. This healthcare is a big problem in this country. Obviously, we’re going on now to tax reform, and I think it’s going better. There are some questions, and again we want all your feedback, but I’m hoping that by Thanksgiving we’re voting on this, and we’re going to send it to the Senate.
“Like I said, tax reform is going to be a huge win for us, and I’m looking forward to getting that done. Thank you so much for that question.”
Kenneth from Augusta asked about Obamacare’s individual mandates:
Congressman Allen: “Our [healthcare] bill repealed these mandates and actually gave tax credits to go buy insurance which is, I think, the way to do business… The Senate is listening to America, finally, and we understand that they are talking about, when they do their tax bill, is to tack on the repeal of the mandates to their tax reform bill.
“Obviously, I will support the repeal of those mandates, and this could well happen. If we get rid of the mandates, then that gives you, and lots of other Americans, the opportunity to partner in these HSAs and to make these insurance companies compete for your business. Competition is the only way we’re going to accomplish that.”
Andre from Augusta asked how tax cuts will spur economic growth:
Congressman Allen: “Of course, I come from the small business community. I had a small business for thirty years. With the reduction in the taxes on the small business pass-through, will give us, in small business, more capital to invest in our business, which will create more jobs.
“We have to do something. The economy was, and has been, growing at a lethargic rate for the last 8 years. We’ve already seen improvement just from the work that we’ve done so far with the tax reform bill. It’s important that we bring jobs back to this country.”
“We pay the highest corporate tax rate in the world right now and by reducing that to 20%, we will keep companies from moving offshore. In fact, I was flying up today and had a gentleman sitting beside me that said they’re fixing to move a whole division here back from Southeast Asia if this tax law goes into effect. That’s the way you grow the economy, and that’s the way you grow jobs.”
Frank from Springfield asked for specifics on the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act:
Congressman Allen: “The [standard deduction in the] current tax bill, to protect roughly double the amount of what you earn each year from taxes, is going from $6,350 to $12,000 for individuals and $12,700 to $24,000 for married couples. And yes, again, most people will be filing that way. We do preserve the home mortgage interest deduction for mortgages up to $500,000, providing tax relief to our current homeowners.
“You raised a good question, and like I said, with this larger deduction, many more people are not going to itemize which is a good thing. It makes it simple. You’re going to be able to fill out your tax return on a postcard.”
If you would like to sign up for the next telephone town hall, please sign up here. If you would like to learn more about the work Congressman Allen is doing in Washington and for the 12th District, please sign up for his weekly e-newsletter here.
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