Lawmakers Press Obama to Support Greater Energy Production to Boost U.S. Economy

WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Senator Thad Cochran (R-Miss.) is among a group of Senate and House lawmakers who today asked President Obama to support their effort to enact the No Cost Stimulus Act to spur greater job creation in the private sector.

Cochran, vice chairman of the Senate Appropriations Committee, signed a letter to the President advocating the No Cost Stimulus Act (S.570) as the basis for affordably creating more jobs and strengthening U.S. energy security. The letter, authored by Senator David Vitter (R-La.), was issued as the Senate turns its attention to legislation intended to improve the unemployment situation, which sits at more than 10 percent in Mississippi.

“There are a number of policy changes that could effectively result in more job creation. I cosponsored the No Cost Stimulus Act because it would remove some of the regulatory impediments that stifle American energy production and the hiring of workers,” Cochran said.

“As Congress begins consideration of legislation intended to encourage job growth and retention, I believe the provisions in S.570 should be given priority over other plans that would require increased federal spending,” he said.

S.570, like HR.1431—a House companion bill, would direct federal agencies to take actions to facilitate the development of energy resources from the Gulf of Mexico, the Outer Continental Shelf and Arctic National Wildlife Refuge. The legislation would encourage the development of oil shale, tar sands and other unconventional fuel sources, as well as the construction of new nuclear power plants. The proposal also addresses federal environmental restrictions that often impede or delay domestic energy production. It would create trust funds to advance renewable and alternative energy sources.

“The current regulatory regime being pushed by the Department of Interior, Department of Energy and Environmental Protection Agency is antithetical to the creation of private sector jobs,” the lawmakers wrote Obama. “Limiting American’s access to domestic resources, whether it is cutting off water to farmers in California, limiting access to federal lands in Utah and Wyoming, or preventing access to energy in West Virginia and the Gulf of Mexico, is no more helpful than massive new regulatory expansion of government mandates on the private sector.”

“The No Cost Stimulus Act was designed to limit agency bureaucracy, to provide access for U.S. citizens to U.S. resources, and to prevent the continued backslide of our energy policy. The act will also streamline review processes that are preventing millions of new jobs from being created,” the lawmakers’ letter concluded.

The No Cost Stimulus Act has been endorsed by the Alliance for Worker Freedom, Americans for Tax Reform, National Association of Manufacturers, National Black Chamber of Commerce, National Taxpayers Union and the U.S. Chamber of Commerce.