January 30,2016

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Congressional Report

Dear Friends,

This week, due to a blizzard in Washington, votes were postponed. Congress will be back in session next week.

You can read more below about my activities this week in the district, other outreach events by my staff, and a preview of what is to come legislatively next week.

Legislative Preview

Next week, when Congress re-convenes, members will consider a number of pieces of legislation. Among the most likely of these will be: 

  • H.R. 3662 - Iran Terror Finance Transparency Act, an attempt to scuttle the Iran Nuclear Deal. In September, I voted in favor of this historic deal, which was recently implemented.
  • Veto attempt on H.R. 3762 - Restoring Americans' Healthcare Freedom Act, a measure passed a few weeks ago and vetoed by the president. The House will attempt to override his veto in order to dismantle the Affordable Care Act. I voted for the Affordable Care Act in 2010 and have fought each of the previous 62 efforts to undo it since.
At the bottom of this message, you can find a video from www.healthcare.gov reminding you that January 31 is the last chance to enroll in a 2016 plan. If you haven't yet enrolled, I hope you will. As the president pointed out in his recent State of the Union Address, nearly 18 million people have gained coverage. Before the ACA:
  • 62 percent of Americans found it difficult or impossible to find affordable coverage when they tried to buy coverage on the individual market. As of 2014, nearly 6 in 10 uninsured Americans can get coverage for $100 a month or less in 2014.
  • The average annual growth in U.S. health care spending was 6.9 percent. Now, they are growing at their slowest rate in 50 years.
Source: The White House


Awarding $1.1 Million to Low-Income and First-Generation Students at Laredo Community College
From left to right: Dr. Juan Maldonado, president of Laredo Community College, Congressman Cuellar, and Manuel L. Garcia, Student Support Services Director at Laredo Community College at the announcement of a $1.1 million Student Support Services Grant in Laredo on Wednesday.

On Wednesday, I announced a special Student Support Services Grant at Laredo Community College, my alma mater, that over its five-year lifetime will award a total of $1.1 million to 300 first-generation and low-income students. 

Using special early-intervention techniques, which have been shown to benefit first-generation students in particular, the grant is expected to improve graduation rates at the college and enhance student outcomes. This is the third time LCC has received this grant since I started in Congress in 2005.

Click here to read more.

Touring the Ports of Laredo from a Bird's Eye View


Last Friday, I hosted Rep. Bill Shuster, chairman of the U.S. House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee, in Laredo, where we were given an aerial tour by Customs and Border Protection - Air and Marine Operations, to view traffic coming in and out of the Laredo ports of entry. (Photo: CBP Air and Marine Operations)


21st Annual Crime Stoppers Menudo Bowl


Last Saturday, I attended the 21st Annual Crime Stoppers Menudo Bowl in Laredo. Crime Stoppers works with our local law enforcement and the community to fight crime. From left to right are Brenda Medina from the Webb County Sheriff's Office, myself, Sonia Lara from Laredo Crime Stoppers and Webb County Sheriff Martin Cuellar.


Recognizing Lytle City Secretary

On Tuesday, my outreach coordinator for Atascosa County, Gilbert Lafuente, recognized Josie Campa for her 40 years of service as Lytle City Secretary. Thank you for all that you do, Josie.


Elementary Students Learn About Government Agencies and Their Function in Mission

Last Friday, my southern district outreach coordinator, Nichole Hernandez, attended the grand opening and ribbon cutting for "Mustangville" at Mims Elementary School in Mission. Students from grades K-5 are now able to participate in a multifaceted program with the objective to teach them how government agencies function and communicate with private businesses and the general public.

Burying a Time Capsule in Roma

On Wednesday, my southern district coordinator, Nichole Hernandez, attended the burial of a time capsule put on by the City of Roma Historical Commission. In the capsule were an assortment of items contributed by the community. It will be unearthed in 50 years. From left to right in the photo above: Nichole Hernandez, City Councilman Joel Hinojosa, City Councilman Gilberto Ramirez, Mayor Roberto Salinas, City Councilwoman Mary Lou Cruz, City Councilman Ramiro Sarabia, and City Councilman Carlos Gonzalez.


Sign Up for Health Insurance Before the January 31 Deadline

Do you need health insurance? January 31 is the last chance to enroll in a 2016 plan.
Most people who sign up for health insurance through HealthCare.gov qualify for financial help to make coverage more affordable. Many find low-premium plans for less than $75 per month! Explore your options today at http://www.HealthCare.gov.





Sincerely,
Henry Cuellar



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