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Issues

Fighting for Your Family Budget
Protecting Your Family and Keeping the Homeland Secure
Caring for Our Environment
Halting Illegal Immigration
Improving Access to Healthcare
Honoring Our Veterans



Fighting for Your Family Budget

Scott Garrett’s commonsense, fiscal conservatism has earned him honors from taxpayer advocates and small business coalitions such as:

  • National Taxpayers Union’s Taxpayers’ Friend Award
  • Citizens Against Government Waste’s Taxpayer Hero
  • National Federation of Independent Business’ Guardian of Small Business
  • Americans for Tax Reform’s Hero of the Taxpayer Award
  • U.S. Chamber of Commerce’s Spirit of Enterprise Award

Standing up for the Rights of Taxpayers:  Scott Garrett is a proud supporter of the Taxpayer Bill of Rights.  Scott believes Members of Congress have an obligation to not only point out problems in the way business is conducted in Washington, but to actually do something about it.  The American Taxpayer Bill of Rights, in black and white, is a pledge to limit federal spending to the growth of the American family budget and do more to ensure greater fiscal responsibility in Congress.

The American Taxpayer Bill of Rights signifies a commitment to four overarching principles: 

  • Taxpayers have a right to have a federal government that does not grow beyond their ability to pay for it.
  • Taxpayers have a right to receive back each dollar that they entrust to the government for their retirement.
  • Taxpayers have a right to expect the government to balance the budget without having their taxes raised.
  • Taxpayers have a right to a simple, fair tax code that they can understand.

This bill of rights emphasizes the importance of what we as legislators need to concentrate on, and that is, limiting the growth of the federal government and keeping money in the pockets of American families and businesses.

Fighting to Reduce Your Taxes:  For too long the tax burden on Americans has been far too high - particularly here in New Jersey.  Scott is leading the call for relief and continually remains at the forefront of efforts in the House to provide it. From his first term in office, Scott has proudly supported tax packages that saved 110 million taxpayers more than $1700 a year.  And Scott is working to prevent tax increases on hardworking American families by fighting to extend the 2001 and 2002 tax cuts, that are due to expire starting in 2010.

Early on, Scott Garrett joined with Republican members in New Jersey to strongly oppose former Governor Jon Corzine’s outlandish plan to raise tolls by as much as 800% on New Jersey highways.  Calling the Governor’s plan “a liberal agenda perpetuating a tax and spend mentality”, Scott Garrett issued a call for the New Jersey government to stop taking from taxpayers to feed its excessive spending habit and vowed to fight the toll increase through legislation.

Ending the Alternative Minimum Tax:  Scott is a leading advocate of repealing the Alternative Minimum Tax (AMT), an outdated tax relic now expected to penalized 32.4 million American taxpayers in 2010.  This arcane stealth tax was created 40 years ago to catch a few very wealthy tax evaders and today ensnares increasing numbers of unsuspecting middle-class families.  Scott has reintroduced his AMT Middle Class Tax Fairness Act to reform the stealth tax and save millions of middle-class families billions of dollars.

Reining in the Price at the Pump:  To stop the drain of rising prices at the pump on your family budget, Scott Garrett authored the STATE Act.  The initial 1-cent federal gas tax was supposed to sunset in 1969, but instead it has increased to more than 18-cents today.  With state and local gas taxes, these add up to almost 50-cents on the average gallon of gas, nationally, or more than $270 for each man, woman, and child annually. 

What’s worse, each year, more and more of that goes to feed pork barrel spending on Capitol Hill – more than $20 billion worth in the last federal transportation bill.  Scott’s STATE Act would let states – not politicians – prioritize local transportation and infrastructure needs, cutting the gas tax and giving you more money for your family budget priorities.

Cutting Back Federal Spending:  While working to provide meaningful tax relief to hardworking Americans, Scott believes it is imperative that Congress commit to reduce Federal spending.  Just as tax relief helps American families and spurs economic growth, so out of control federal spending places undue burdens on Americans for generations to come. In Congress, Scott Garrett has been an outspoken advocate for fiscal restraint, consistently calling for more sanity and accountability in government.

Demanding Transparency:  Scott Garrett remains a leading critic of frivolous earmarks.  While some local projects are truly worth federal funding, the earmarking process has spun out of control.  Scott has repeatedly called for transparency and a reduction in irresponsible earmarks, even taking on members of his own party to stop the waste.

Promoting Job Creation and Economic Growth:  In addition to working hard to put more money back in your family budget, Scott Garrett is also busy promoting economic growth and job creation by giving American small businesses the tools and resources they need to retain employees and create new job opportunities.  His Economic Growth Act would stimulate the economy by:

  • Giving full, immediate Section 179 expensing,
  • Ending capital gains on inflation,
  • Simplifying the capital gains rate structure by cutting the corporate rate down to the individual rate of 15%, and
  • Reducing the corporate tax rate to 25%.

Supporting American Financial Markets:  Scott Garrett’s amendment to give American small business relief from the obscene Sarbanes-Oxley (SOX) reporting requirements was the first successful effort to scale back the law that is quickly putting American businesses and American financial markets at a competitive disadvantage in our global economy.  Nine out of ten international small businesses don’t even look to American financial markets anymore because of the ruinous impact SOX is having on our reputation as a fair and profitable market in which to invest your business.  Scott’s AMERICA Act would reform SOX to ensure that American investors are protected and American financial markets remain strong and competitive.

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Protecting Your Family and Keeping the Homeland Secure

Scott Garrett has been leading the charge to ensure that homeland security dollars are focused on places at greatest risk, as recommended by the 9/11 Commission.  And, when news reports leaked that the Administration’s Fiscal Year 2009 budget would slash risk-based homeland security funding, Scott demanded that high-risk areas get priority – and he succeeded in securing increased funds for transit and port security.

Implementing the Recommendations of the 9/11 Commission:  Working with a bipartisan coalition, Scott Garrett has ensured that funds are prioritized to the New York metro area, North Jersey, and similar areas with heavy population density, target-rich airports and sea ports, and highly visible national landmarks.  And, in his first two terms in Congress, Scott helped secure more than $160 billion in funds for our area to help keep us safe from terrorist threat.

Working with First Responders:  Scott Garrett takes the time to talk to local first responders about their needs for equipment, clear communications, training, and more.  For instance, working with the Warren County Office of Emergency Management, Scott has helped secure $150,000 for their Communication Interoperability Project that will enable first responders to better communicate with one another, protecting their lives and those of the people they serve.

Protecting American Infrastructure from Overseas Control:  When the government of Dubai nearly secured control of operations at Port of New York and New Jersey in 2006, it became clear that our government was not putting top priority on safe and secure infrastructure.  Scott Garrett’s SAFE PORTS Act would have reformed the process for foreign investment in American infrastructure to ensure that homeland security is always the primary focus.

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Caring for Our Environment

New Jersey boasts some of the most beautiful natural treasures in the nation. Scott Garrett grew up in the Fifth District and is raising his family here.  His experiences from childhood and his intense desire to see our natural resources protected for future generations to come have given him an unparalleled sense of stewardship to the land. 

Preserving Open Space:  During his time in Congress, Scott has been an outspoken advocate of preserving open space in New Jersey and is a proud co-sponsor of legislation to protect tens of thousands of acres of open space and forests in Northern New Jersey. 

Protecting our Natural Resources: Scott Garrett led the effort in the House to have the Musconetcong River in Warren County designated as a national “Wild and Scenic River”, and was pleased to secure much-needed funding for the ambitious clean-up effort at Greenwood Lake in Passaic County.

Scott Garrett remains committed to preserving and protecting our open space and natural resources for the benefit of current and future generations. 

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Halting Illegal Immigration

America is a nation of immigrants, and throughout our history it has been the ingenuity and entrepreneurship of immigrants from around the world that have made our country great. America is also great because we are a nation of laws, and we must ensure that those who seek to cross our borders do so legally. The validity of our laws as well as the strength of our national security depends on this.

Securing our Borders:  During Scott’s time in Congress, he has been a strong supporter of measures to secure our borders from illegal immigrants and also those who attempt to enter our country with the sole purpose of doing our country harm. Scott Garrett has consistently supported legislation to combat the hiring of illegal aliens and to provide for strategies for increasing border security.

Scott Garrett supported the Secure Fence Act. He firmly believes that providing stronger border security will help us better protect our nation.

Opposing Amnesty:  Scott is an outspoken leader in opposing amnesty for those who broke our laws to cut in line in front of immigrants who spent many years and dollars to be part of the American dream legally.  Rewarding those who have no respect for the rules is not a good policy.

We must adequately enforce current immigration laws and secure our nation’s borders. Protecting American citizens to ensure that we are safe and strong is one of Scott’s top priorities.

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Improving Access to Healthcare

One of the greatest factors upon which our quality of life depends is our nation’s quality of health. The U.S healthcare system is the best in the world, and it is vital that we not only continue to keep it the best but also that we work to increase access to it so every American can receive the care they need.

Strengthening Healthcare:  To strengthen healthcare provision right here in the Fifth District, Scott Garrett secured funding for several of the District’s hospitals to ensure that they have the means needed to serve our community.  He also voted to establish the New Jersey Breast Cancer Research Fund and voted in favor of including breast self-examination as a part of core curriculum content standards in our public schools.

Containing Healthcare Cost:  Furthermore, Scott is a strong supporter of measures that would help contain the rising cost of healthcare, such as health savings accounts, and increase access to low-cost high quality health insurance, such as association health plans.  Association health plans will allow small businesses to join together to provide health insurance to their employees. More than 24 million uninsured Americans work for small business that currently cannot afford to provide them health coverage. Associated health plans will provide a mechanism for employers to be able to address this issue and for employees to receive the coverage they need.

You can count on Scott to continue his support of measures which would make health insurance more portable; empowering individuals and families to hold onto their healthcare plans from job to job rather than constraining their healthcare options to what an employer offers.

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Honoring Our Veterans

We owe no greater gratitude than that belonging to our nation’s veterans. These service members have sacrificed their lives, comfort, and safety to fight for the continued security of our democracy. From World War II through Korea, Vietnam, Desert Storm, and the current War on Terror, our veterans deserve the best that we can give to them.

Restoring Quality Healthcare for Veterans:  Scott proudly voted in favor of legislation to restore much-needed health care coverage to many of America’s Armed Forces retirees.  He believes in expanding community-based outreach clinics to help make medical care more accessible and convenient to our nation’s veterans.  And to stand by our promises, Scott offered legislation to allow veterans to have prescriptions from their private doctor’s filled by the Veterans Health Administration.  Scott Garrett believes that if a private doctor prescribes medication for a veteran, that vet should be able to obtain it using the veteran’s benefits he has earned. Additionally, to ensure that we continue to provide the best health care to our veterans, Scott Garrett supported increased funding for much needed VA medical research.

Expanding the Federal Burial Benefit:  Supporting veterans’ families is important to Scott.   To honor our veterans, Scott offered legislation that helps the families of veterans by expanding the federal burial benefit to cover veterans buried in state veterans’ cemeteries. Under this legislation, a veteran’s family will not be forced to bear the burden of financing the burial if they wish to keep the family together in a state cemetery. A veterans’ spouse and dependents would also be eligible for these benefits if they are buried with the veteran in a state cemetery. 

Scott believes that we owe our nation’s veterans the very best in care and support. They have fought on the behalf of our country and now it’s time for us to fight for them. Rest assured that he will continue to work to protect and provide them with the security and support they need.

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