More on Jobs
Defeating COVID-19 includes reconnecting unemployed Americans. Before the pandemic, America’s economy was thriving. Workers at the bottom of the income ladder were seeing the largest wage gains in recent history. Two principle achievements from the last 25 years - the 2017 Tax Cuts and Jobs Act and the 1996 Welfare Reform Act - ensured Americans benefitted from hard work.
Nebraska is a biofuels powerhouse - the second and third largest producer of ethanol and corn, respectively, in the country. With 25 active ethanol plants and a capacity of more than 2.5 billion gallons, the importance of biofuels to our state economy cannot be understated. Biodiesel production in Nebraska has seen exponential growth as well. Thanks to innovation and technological developments, biodiesel production has grown from 25 million gallons in 2004 to 2.9 billion gallons in 2019.
Getting Americans back to work has been one of the primary challenges facing our nation since the COVID-19 pandemic began nearly one year ago. While the employment situation varies widely from state to state, ensuring every unemployed American can reconnect with work must be a top priority. In Nebraska we are fortunate to have an unemployment rate of just 3%, making us one of 18 states that have an unemployment rate below 5%. Other states which have had more restrictive lockdowns are seeing much higher rates of unemployment.
While votes are still being counted and recounted, there are other things we must focus on as well – like getting our economy back on track. Through the use of tools like Zoom, I am able to meet with Nebraskans about our economy without skipping a beat.
Small businesses are staples of our communities and the backbone of rural America. However, small businesses have also taken the hardest hit from COVID’s impact and we must continue doing all we can to help them as we continue to fight this disease. In order to hear from small businesses directly while providing the latest in innovative ideas, I will be hosting a series of Small Business & Community Roundtables on November 9, 10, 12, and 13, from 8:30 a.m. to 9:30 a.m. (CST) / 7:30 a.m. to 8:30 a.m. (MST).
In a typical year, the six months from the start of spring to the start of fall fly by: we celebrate summer breaks, family vacations, weddings, and graduations; crops are planted and grown, and harvest begins. These last six months could not have felt more different. Almost every portion of our lives was somehow impacted by the coronavirus and our efforts to fight it. To get back to “normal,” we have work to do.
In order to address COVID-19, Congress and President Trump have enacted three major pieces of legislation to fight this disease and help as many Americans as possible stay employed, with the goal of resuming our strong economy as soon as possible when this pandemic subsides. While agencies such as Treasury and the Small Business Administration (SBA) are working to roll out these programs as quickly as possible, I hope the information below will be helpful to you in this challenging time.
Washington, D.C. – Congressman Adrian Smith released the following statement after supporting Phase III of the COVID-19 assistance negotiated by the Trump administration, known as the CARES Act:
Just a few weeks ago, we were in the midst of the strongest economy in years. We now find ourselves with questions about what will happen to our economy due to the COVID-19 outbreak. In contrast with other times of economic uncertainty, this interruption in our economy was not caused by bad decisions or nefarious actors, nor were we nearing the end of a business cycle. It was caused by a viral pandemic: a natural disaster. Though it may be painful, American resolve will bring us through this crisis.
Washington, D.C. – Congressman Adrian Smith (R-NE) will host an educational Infrastructure Seminar at Hastings Central Community College on October 3, 2019.