ABC-SETX Scaffolding Class - Intermediate Certificate in Scaffolding Level 1

Jan 08, 2021

 

Associated Builders and Contractors of Southeast Texas (ABC-SETX), in partnership with Lamar State College of Port Arthur, is conducting a three week accelerated National Center for Construction Education and Research (NCCER) scaffolding course.The training classes will be offered each month through November, 2021.  If you, or others within your organization are interested in obtaining this training and related credentials, please pass along the information on the attached flyer.  For more information and registration, please call Lamar at 409-984-6232   This is a funded program, so there will be no cost to the eligible applicant, and an excellent opportunity to gain construction skills.

PPP Loan Deduction

Dec 28, 2020

 

UNITED STATES SENATE

 

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Monday, December 21, 2020

              

CONTACT:

Natalie Yezbick (Cornyn), (202) 224-0704

Jahan Wilcox (Braun), (202) 224-4814


Cornyn, Braun Praise Inclusion of PPP Loan Deduction for Small Businesses in Year-End COVID Relief Bill

Clarifies that Expenses Paid with Forgiven PPP Loan are Tax-Deductible

 

WASHINGTON – U.S. Senators John Cornyn (R-TX) and Mike Braun (R-IN) praised the inclusion of the Small Business Expense Protection Act, which would clarify the Small Business Administration’s Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) so small businesses can deduct expenses paid with a forgiven PPP loan from their taxes, in the omnibus funding legislation:

 

“The Paycheck Protection Program has been a lifeline to small businesses in Texas struggling to stay afloat during the pandemic,” said Sen. Cornyn. “By clarifying that expenses paid with a forgiven PPP loan can still be deducted from small businesses’ taxes, we can help ensure small businesses won’t be hit with yet another hardship during an already difficult year.”

 

“As a Main Street Entrepreneur focused on solutions, I’ve introduced legislation in May to safeguard small businesses.  The CARES Act was intended as a lifeline to small businesses, but forcing them to shoulder tax liability for these forgivable loans would be like throwing them a cinder block. I’m glad Senator Cornyn and I have been able to get this much needed fix past the finish line for the American People,” said Sen. Braun.

 

Background:

 

The intent of the Paycheck Protection Program, which was created in the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act, was to maximize small businesses’ ability to maintain liquidity, retain their employees, and recover from the pandemic as soon as possible. However, the IRS issued a notice that said small businesses cannot deduct these business expenses. This notice is contrary to congressional intent, which this legislation would clarify.

 

Senator John Cornyn, a Republican from Texas, is a member of the Senate Finance, Intelligence, and Judiciary Committees.

 

 

 

 

 

JOHN CORNYN

CONTACT: Drew Brandewie, (202) 224-0704

United States Senator – Texas

Libby Hambleton Sharp, (512) 461-7036

For Immediate Release

Tuesday, December 22, 2020

 

Cornyn Passes 20 Texas Priorities in Water Infrastructure Bill

 

WASHINGTON—U.S. Senator John Cornyn released the following statement after twenty Texas priorities he advocated for in the Water Resources Development Act of 2020 passed the Senate as a part of the omnibus funding bill:

 

“Texans will be safer from future storms with the authorization of these projects,” said Sen. Cornyn.  “From studying flood risk to fortifying levees to improving ship channels, all Texans stand to benefit from the high priority infrastructure projects included in this bill.”

 

Sen. Cornyn’s priorities that are included in the Water Resources Development Act of 2020 are as follows:

 

  1. Authorizes the Houston Ship Channel Expansion Improvement Project.

 

  1. Authorizes the Jefferson County ecosystem restoration project.

 

  1. Authorizes the Gulf Intracoastal Waterway, Brazos River Floodgates, and Colorado River Locks navigation project.

 

  1. Authorizes the Matagorda Ship Channel Improvement Project in Port Lavaca.

 

  1. Authorizes the Chacon Creek flood risk management project.

 

  1. Authorizes a new feasibility study for the Port Arthur and Orange County flood risk management project, including construction of improvements to interior drainage.

 

  1. Authorizes a feasibility study for the Chocolate Bayou flood risk management project.

 

  1. Authorizes project modifications for the Houston-Galveston Navigation Channels project.

 

  1. Authorizes a feasibility study for the Port of Victoria flood risk management project.

 

  1. Expedites the completion of the Buffalo Bayou feasibility study for flood risk management.

 

  1. Requires the Secretary of the Army to provide a written status update on efforts to address flooding at Wilson Creek and Sloan Creek in Fairview, Texas.

 

  1. Authorizes project modifications for the Port of Corpus Christi Channel Improvement project.

 

  1. Expedites completion of the Lake Whitney Reallocation Study for the reallocation of water supply storage.

 

  1. Expedites completion of the Aquilla Lake Reallocation Study for the reallocation of water supply storage.

 

  1. Expedites the completion of the Lower Rio Grande River feasibility study for flood risk management, ecosystem restoration, and water supply.

 

  1. Authorizes the USACE to participate in the repair and restoration of the eroding embankment at Lake Waco.

 

  1. Directs the USACE to assist El Paso County with a proposal to modify the authorized funding level for a water related infrastructure project.

 

  1. Assists Harris County Flood Control District in streamlining benefit-cost analyses for projects.

 

  1. Directs the USACE to identify specific engineering and maintenance deficiencies for levees across Texas and the nation, and to describe recommended remedies to correct each deficiency to ensure that critical levee performance is being achieved.

 

  1. Reauthorizes of the Rio Grande Environmental Management Program in Texas, New Mexico, and Colorado through 2029.

 

 

Senator John Cornyn, a Republican from Texas, is a member of the Senate Finance, Intelligence, and Judiciary Committees.

 

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JOHN CORNYN

CONTACT: Drew Brandewie, (202) 224-0704

United States Senator – Texas

Natalie Yezbick, (202) 224-0704

For Immediate Release

Monday, December 21, 2020

 

Cornyn Priorities, COVID Relief Pass in Government Funding Bill

 

WASHINGTON – U.S. Senator John Cornyn (R-TX) supported the passage of the targeted coronavirus relief package and FY21 Omnibus Appropriations bill, which funds the federal government through September 30, 2021 and includes many priorities important to Texas:

 

Relief for Texans During the Pandemic:

 

  1. Provides direct financial assistance to Texans:
    1. Provides individuals making up to $75,000 with a $600 check and an additional $600 for each eligible child. A family of four making up to $150,000 will receive $2,400
    2. Extends the eviction moratorium until January 31, 2021 and provides $25 billion in temporary and targeted rental assistance for those who lost their source of income during the pandemic
  2. Expands unemployment insurance (UI) for Texas workers:
    1. Provides an extra $300 weekly federal UI benefit on top of the state maximum temporarily
  3. Assists the health care industry’s response:
    1. Provides $19.695 billion for the purchase, development, and production of vaccines and $8.75 billion for vaccine distribution, administration, and monitoring
    2. Provides $22.4 billion to assist states with testing and containment
    3. Reauthorizes the Community Health Centers program for three years and provides $1.68 billion in appropriated funds.
    4. Provides $3.25 billion for the Strategic National Stockpile of PPE and other critical supplies
    5. Provides $3 billion for the Provider Relief Fund
    6. Provides $4.25 billion for substance abuse and mental health treatment and prevention
  4. Supports Texans in rural areas:
    1. Includes $300 million to build out rural broadband
    2. Provides an additional $250 million for telehealth
    3. Provides $11.2 billion in funding for agricultural assistance to support farmers, ranchers, logging and timber, textile mills, and producers.
    4. Provides $1 billion in repurposed funding for agricultural losses due to previous natural disasters.
  5. Provides for Texas education, childcare, and nutrition:
    1. Provides $10 billion for childcare centers
    2. Allocates $82 billion in funding to support students, teachers, schools, and families, including:
      1. $54.3 billion to help elementary and secondary schools safely re-open or remain open;
      2. $22.7 billion to support students and institutions of higher education;
      3. And $4.1 billion as part of the Governors Fund to give states flexible funding to address students’ needs from early childhood through college
      4. Continues and provides additional waivers and flexibility for School Nutrition Programs, of which two-thirds of Texas school children participate in
    3. Provides $400 million in funding for the Emergency Food Assistance Program and $1.5 billion for the purchase of food and commodities to help Texas food banks meet unprecedented demand
    4. Includes a six-month increase in supplemental food benefits for low-income Texans

 

Supporting Texas Workers & Job Creators:

 

  1. Paycheck Protection Program (PPP): Provides more than $250 billion to replenish the program, which provides loans to allow small businesses to maintain their payroll, hire back laid-off employees, and cover interest on mortgages, rent, and utilities
  2. Save Our Stages Act: Provides Small Business Administration grants totaling $15 billion for entertainment venue operators affected by COVID-19 stay-at-home orders in order to keep venues afloat, pay employees, and preserve a critical economic sector
  3. Small Business Expense Protection Act: Clarifies the Small Business Administration’s Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) so small businesses can deduct expenses paid with a forgiven PPP loan from their taxes
  4. Extension of the Donation Acceptance Program: Provides a one-year extension of this program promoting public-private partnerships to boost staffing and make infrastructure improvements at U.S. ports of entry without adding to the national deficit

 

Protecting Texas Children:

 

  1. Preventing Online Sales of E-Cigarettes to Children Act: Blocks online sales of electronic cigarettes to children

 

Strengthening Texas’ Energy Sector:

 

  1. Launching Energy Advancement and Development through Innovations for Natural Gas (LEADING) Act: Incentivizes research and development of carbon capture technology for natural gas to ensure a reliable, affordable, and environmentally sound energy supply

 

Preserving Texans’ History:

 

  1. National Museum of the American Latino Act: Authorizes the Smithsonian Institution to create a museum honoring American Latinos

 

Senator John Cornyn, a Republican from Texas, is a member of the Senate Finance, Intelligence, and Judiciary Committees.

 

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Legislative Agenda

Dec 18, 2020

Greater Port Arthur Chamber of Commerce

2021-22 Legislative Agenda

This is Southeast Texas, and these facts are why we need an organization like Texas 2036!  This organization makes decision based on factual date!

and our impact on the state’s and national economy:

Southeast Texas, which includes Jefferson and Orange counties, is a major player in the economy of both Texas and the US.  The country’s energy independence begins and ends in our backyard.

It’s tough to live in the shadow of your pretty big sister, which is the story of the area of southeast Texas known locally as the Golden Triangle, and by extension, the Sabine-Neches Waterway.  It means that you have to work harder and do it better, just to get noticed.  The area today is doing just that.

Since the first major new facility in the area was constructed in 2003, the area has seen continued significant growth in both the refining and petrochemicals businesses.  Additionally, it has become a major hub for storage and export of crude oil, condensate, and refined transportation fuels, as well as LNG and renewable fuels.  Today, the area and Sabine-Neches Waterway can claim the following as a partial list of its growth and importance to the Texas and US economies:

            1.  Home to the largest single refinery in the US.

            2.  Home to the largest methanol facility in the US.

            3.  Home to four major refineries, with a total throughput capacity of 1.671 MM barrels    per day, 8.8 percent of 2019 US refining capacity, but importantly 13 percent of transportation fuels-gasoline, diesel and jet fuel per the Energy Information Agency(EIA).

            4.  Home to over 35 chemical and petrochemical facilities.

            5.  Home to the largest single owner crude terminal in the US, as well as one of the largest single owner refined products and transportation fuels terminals.

            6.  Home to the Dept. of Energy Strategic Petroleum Reserve (SPR) intake facility for both the Big Hill and West Hackberry storage facilities, which account for 57% of the nation’s crude oil strategic reserve, approximately 400 MM barrels.

            7.  Home to the largest LNG exporter in the US, with two additional major facilities either being converted to export capability are under construction.

            8.  The Sabine-Neches Waterway is the # 1 liquid bulk cargo waterway in the US.

            9.  The area is an Origin for 3 major petroleum products pipelines; supplying by pipeline the entire eastern and mid-continental US (except New England) with transportation and home heating fuels.

Jointly, the Sabine-Neches Waterway; comprised of the Ports of Beaumont, Port Arthur, and Sabine Pass in Jefferson County and the Port of Orange in Orange County, operate as the 3rd largest port/waterway complex in the nation in terms of tonnage and is home to two Strategic Military Ports that function as the nation’s #1 commercial military out-load port.  Export revenue for the waterway was $30.2 billion in 2018.  The projections for 2026 are $73.1 billion, which is in keeping with expected increases in petroleum exports forecast for the entire Gulf Coast area refineries and petrochemical facilities.

 

The completed projects and proposed expansions already identified will make the area even more important in the future.  It could not have been done without the complete joint effort cooperation and “can-do” attitude of private industry, the public ports, Texas state, local municipal and county governments, Texas and Federal regulatory agencies, the Sabine-Neches Navigation District, the Sabine Pilots Association and the South East Texas Waterway Advisory Council (SETWAC), a US Coast Guard sponsored local industry advisory council to the Captain of the Port for the area. 

 

Unlike her big sister to the west, the Sabine-Neches Waterway and Golden Triangle cities and counties have ample expansion capabilities along our waterway.  Opportunity identification and cooperation to safely achieve expansion goals has long been a strong suit of the area public and private entities.  A perfect example is now the approved $1.4 billion waterway deepening and improvement project that will eliminate most constraints on waterway traffic.  With those constraints lifted, vessel capacity expansion of up to 25% is both feasible and likely, given the history of private and public cooperation since 2003.  This increase in waterway vessel capacity will correlate to an even greater increase in waterway tonnage.

KEY TAKEAWAY DATA FOR OUR STATEMENT OF ECONOMIC IMPACT

  • $54 billion in announced and proposed industrial projects along the Sabine-Neches Waterway in SETX.
  • Currently SETX represents 1.53% of GDP, 5.9% of the manufacturing GDP and 1.52% of labor force.
    • Texas is ranked 2nd in the US for waterborne commerce. The Sabine-Neches Waterway handles 22% of Texas’s cargo and 4.7% of the US cargo total. This generates $5 billion in state and local revenue and $9 billion in federal revenue annually.
    • Texas represents 30% of the US refining capacity and SETX represents 26.5% of Texas refining capacity.
    • Texas governmental expenditures for all counties is $98.3 billion with SETX receiving less than 1% with only $995.8 million.  The current allocation of funds fails to represent SETX 1.53% of the GDP by over 30%.  This is without counting the $54 billion in expansion projects thereby increasing the state’s revenue and tax base proportionally.

 

WE HAVE A RARE OPPORTUNITY FOR SOUTHEAST TEXAS TO BECOME A CRITICAL PART OF OUR STATE AND NATIONAL REEMERGENCE FROM OUR COVID ERA ECONOMY.  TO DO THAT WE WILL NEED THE SUPPORT OF THE STATE AND OUR LEGISLATURE. WE MUST ENSURE OUR INFRASTRUCTURE IS ADEQUATE TO SUPPORT PRIVATE ENTERPRISE AND THE ANTICIPATED GROWTH.  SEED MONEY MUST ALSO BE INVESTED BY THE STATE ALONG THE SNWW TO ALLOW IT TO BENEFIT FROM THE FEDERAL IMPROVEMENT PROJECTS.  THIS IS IN LIGHT OF THE FACT THAT THERE IS NOT ONLY A GUARANTEED RATE OF RETURN IN ADDITION TO THE INCREASED TAX BASE FOR THE STATE.  AFTERALL OUR INFRASTRUCTURE GUARANTEE AND OUR UNDERLYING FINANCIAL SUPPORT IS ONE OF THE MOST SUBSTANTIVE OFFERINGS THAT WE CAN GIVE INDUSTRY WHEN COMPARED WITH OTHER COASTAL STATES IN THE REGION.  TO FOLLOW IS A LIST OF ITEMS THAT WE NEED TO HAVE ADDRESSED BY THE LEGISLATURE IN VARIOUS CAPACITIES.  TOGETHER WE CAN HELP ENSURE TEXAS’ FUTURE IS DIVERSE AND SUCCESSFUL.

 

Pat Avery

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