DC 2017 Drill Down

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Adam Schiff, Sen. Al Franken

To our concerns:

Marketplace Fairness – Sen. Franken supports

What Franken is working on:

  • His focus is on training through the two year colleges. He has a training bill. He sees colleges as trainers of the future
  • Brea Mackey is Franken’s contact based in Rochester
Stephen Park, National Governor's Association

Input on the DC dynamics:

  • The amount of empty positions are creating “heavy lifting” at the capitol.
  • When federal discord occurs the states get empowered by the people to enact change

On his organization:

  • The Association’s job is to bridge the divide. They work very closely with the US Chamber.
  • They are fueled by job creation.
  • Began in 1908 by Teddy Roosevelt by pulling together governors to talk about public land. Informal until 1920s when began office in Chicago. Gov.s gathered once per year. They had 45-50 governors for the second meeting. They began federally focused. In 1960, they established the DC location. They have an office of Government Relations (13 people). The bigger side of the organization is providing technical assistance to states as they create legislation based on other states.
  • Current chairman of the group is Virginia’s governor

On our issues:

  • Marketplace fairness is #1 for the governors

Their top concerns:

  • “Jobs that are routine” — jobs that do not require education
    • 50% of the jobs are routine. [Many of those voted for gov. Trump.] In counties where jobs are routine by at least 50%, Trump won by at least 40 points.
    • “It is disheartening to see the president cutting education in 1/2. That is insurmountable.” They need some sort of training. They do not come job-ready.
    • If we see a $1.5 million cut, companies that are trying to startup businesses
  • There is $17 billion total headed to childcare spending. Want to loosen the criteria on “High quality programs”.
  • Need tax reform to create new dollars for transportation. Where get money for infrastructure otherwise? Need healthcare resolved to do tax reform. Need tax reform to invest in infrastructure.
Kathleen Laird, Meghan Ladwig, Sen. Baldwin

On our issues:

  • NESP: Senator Baldwin is very supportive.
  • Infrastructure: Baldwin is nervous about public-private partnerships. She doesn’t want it only on the coasts and not helping Wisconsin. Their office wants details of how it works and what it funds.
  • Tax Reforms: The Senator is interested in simplified tax code.
  • Marketplace Fairness: she is supportive. The opposition is in the House is in other interest.
  • People with Disabilities: “You are preaching to the choir on the Medicaid cut. She is very concerned with the direction we’re going.” What is helpful for them: sending the message that the changes are harmful.
Hana Greenberg & Rep. Ron Kind, Rep. Ron Kind

DC Fly In 2017 Kind

What he’s working on:

  • Trying to get budget bill passed so no shutdown
  • Healthcare – coming Saturday. Anxious to get something on the president’s desk. He is worried about a lot of aspects of it.
  • Tax Reform: How will we pay for it? Wants to see the details. Tax code is complicated. Need to tee up hearings to evaluate the pros and cons.
  • Imports: There is a proposal to offset a 20% tax on imports and exports with a 20-25% currency appreciation to offset this. If this doesn’t happen (many variables apply), it could hit consumer with a 20% tax.
  • “It shouldn’t be this hard with the polarization.” He is a member of The Tuesday Group that meets to find common ground and get things down.

On Our Issues:

  • Tax Reform: There is consensus on simplifying. It has been since 1986 since we did significant tax reforms. It will take tough division.
  • NESP: can’t find the dollars to get it going. This would be our major investment in the Mississippi basin. There is no talk about infrastructure. Need sustainable funding.
  • Marketplace Fairness: There is a pretty good list of who is in support and it’s growing. Problem: Bob Goodlat is the stickler. Who does the collecting, cost. Strong streak that if it’s a new revenue source, they view it as a tax and they’re opposed.  Could tuck into tax reform to bypass.
Paul Hallett, Rep. Paul Ryan

On our issues:

  • Goodlat’s Marketplace Fairness appears to be gaining moment. It is likely it will not part of the tax reform bill because it would run into issues.
  • They are reviewing Gainful Employment and how it is measured.
    • Understand they want to be gainful. The issue is with people going on to get a degree from certain private schools but they don’t see an increase in payroll. That doesn’t make it bad
    • Not sure of the timeline on higher ed. Likely a clean authorization of Perkins coming.
Samantha Cyrulnik-Dercher, Rep Tim Waltz

On our issues:

  • Healthcare: Support rural screenings. Good for their constituents
  • Airport; Very interested in working on the airport issue (Rochester is saying the same message)
  • Tax Reform: looking for details. Not sure how to pay for the changes. They support simplifying it.

Their top issues:

  • Education: culture change needs to happen. Supports teaching kids that 4-year is not the best path for everyone.
  • Tax Reform
  • Healthcare (bill is not getting better with all the changes). Want lower premiums and plan that the change doesn’t uninsured people. What passes can’t be destructive to the states.
Sen. Sean Duffy and Ryan McCormack, Rep. Sean Duffy

On our issues:

  • Marketplace Fairness will look at
  • Telehealth: interested in aligning their work more due to their rural constituents

What they’re working on:

  • Visas h2a for workers for dairy farmers.
Kyle Roskam, Wisconsin Office in DC

Top issue raised by Kyle:

Dairy agreement with Canada (that caused many Wisconsin farmers to not have a processor for their milk). They are hoping the US trade representative with Canada will work this out.

In reaction to Marketplace Fairness: Marketplace Fairness has passed the Senate. House has not taken it up (so unsure of the total). Senate has not changed enough to change their approval. There are two versions of the bill with two different metrics. Coming together on one version of the bill will be helpful.

Rep. Mike Gallagher & Matt Tucker

DC Fly In 2017 Grothman

On our issues: We asked him to co-sponsor Marketplace Fairness. He will take a look at it.

His issues:

  • Keeping education funding in the budget.
  • Working to find processors for the dairy farms left without one due to Canada’s changes. He foresees this fight continuing. He know Trump is very engaged and this is a #1 priority for Speaker Paul Ryan.
  • Tax Reform: he’s concerned about keeping the tax credits for ag and manufacturing
Sherry Kurtz (focus is on many topics), Chris Colin (Tax), Karen Summer (Health) – Sen. Grassley

On our issues:

  • Infrastructure: airport — doesn’t see much changing. There is an agreement not to include this work because of disagreement on increases or decreases. New York delegates are fighting on the hours. Per Sherry
  • Biodiesel Credit: Grassley introduced a bill today. They are seeing how the tax talks go. Looking for certainty and stable way to glide to a transition.

The issues they are working:

  • Other issues: juvenile justice reform, drug reforms, patent reforms
  • Finance will have a large year
  • Infrastructure through the tax codes is likely
  • “We have been working on procedural issues that slows down the legislative heart”
  • Aviation: felt the bill that passed was at least bi-partisan and negotiated
Flynn Rico-Johnson, Sen. Klobuchar (MN)

On our issues:

  • Telehealth is important to Sen. Klobuchar.  The Senator just introduced a Vet bill. Get a lot of American Medical Association support because of the impact on liability.
  • Thanked him for the Senator’s work on rail reform.
  • Marketplace Fairness: The Senator I supportive, “We have Best Buy and Target in our state. Money invested in the community is better.” NH, MT, because they don’t have a sales tax, it would impose one. Software is available (data suggests it is not quite as simple). What is the impact on entrepreneurs starting out of their garage? Mary Jo Werner’s response (from Wipfli, in our group): This would be using the same software as income tax reporting.
  • Tax Reform: “We don’t have the details to have intelligent discussion”. She is in support of comprehensive tax reform.
  • Infrastructure: “We are hoping some of the infrastructure improvements can be tied in to tax reform.” The Senator hopes it will also include water infrastructure. She has also considered water-sewer with this conversation. Sen. Klobuchar has concerns that public-private infrastructure investments will not work in rural areas.
  • Airport: there was a private carrier going under in Iowa and the conversation went aggressive very quickly. The safety group (name?) was fighting changes.

What they’re working on:

  • The Senator sits on the environment & public works committee (new to this congress) because of the flood mitigation, etc. that is needed. It’s up her alley of what she wants to speak to.
Meris Petek, Sen. Ron Johnson

On our issues/questions:

  • Dairy: any trade conversations are litigious and take a long time. They are looking at processors to take up the last 44 farms. It was 75.  This includes a 3,000 herd dairy. NAFTA: ultra filtered milk did not exist when drafted. Canada has a national pricing scheme that is above the world market price. They created a second class of pricing for this product that is far below the world market price. Timber … ongoing accusation of them dumping in the US, but it is another issue that is timing at the same time.
  • Tax Reform: he is shopping around his idea (on his website). He wants to start on the corporate side — tax C-Corp similar to S-Corp and LLC. It is a “Warren Buffet” tax. ALEXIS is the person on this. He sees it as a way to have a conversation.
  • Johnson says tax reform will go “real smooth”
  • Tom Petri moved back to Wisconsin and will open Madison office.
Andrea Hechavarria, Sen. Joni Ernst
[Due to space restrictions, no notes were taken]
Rachel VerVelde, Rep. Glenn Grothman

What he’s working on:

  • a workers compensation bill.

On our issues:

  • Marketplace Fairness: He’s a long-time advocate for th
Kelsey Griswold, Rep. Blum

On our issues:

  • Tax Reform: They want to see top line economic growth. Don’t want to see tax breaks that add to the deficit.
  • Marketplace Fairness: will go through Judiciary.
  • Gainful Employment: there’s a lot of cleanup to be done of items that went through Obama’s last days

What they’re working on:

  • Changes to NAFTA: 1 in 3 rows of corn are exported. Concerning.
  • Key issues: what can we do to improve rural economy.

Trump executive order created a task force to look at rural economies

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