Rep. Kingston: ‘We can’t afford to let this project linger any longer’
WASHINGTON, D.C. – The U.S. House of Representatives today overwhelmingly approved legislation that would clear a number of bureaucratic hurdles for the Keystone Pipeline which has been stuck in the review process for nearly five years.
The $7 billion private infrastructure investment would bring Canadian oil some 1,700 miles to the American Gulf Coast for processing.
Congressman Jack Kingston (R-GA), a cosponsor of the legislation, praised House passage and urged the Senate to act quickly.
“We can’t afford to let this project linger any longer,” Kingston said. “It would directly support 20,000 American jobs without a dime from taxpayers. It would offset half the oil we import from countries in the Middle East with oil from one of our longest-standing allies. It’s time for the Senate to join us in breaking the bureaucratic logjam.”
Rep. Phil Gingrey voted today to finally allow construction on the Keystone XL pipeline, which will put the United States on the path towards energy independence while creating tens of thousands of private sector jobs. The bipartisan Northern Route Approval Act, H.R. 3, passed the House of Representatives by a 241-175 vote. This legislation removes the presidential permit requirement, no longer allowing President Obama to delay approval of this vital, privately-funded project. The bill also streamlines the federal permitting process, removes bureaucratic roadblocks, and eliminates layers of government red-tape.
“Achieving energy independence is paramount to our economic prosperity and national security. The pipeline, which is privately funded and truly “shovel-ready,” is a step towards that goal,” said Gingrey.
Sandra Deal, wife of the governor, has asked them to play nice. Don’t “destroy” each other, she has begged. But her plea for sandbox rules is unlikely to have any effect.
Next year, four or five prominent Republicans will conduct scorched-earth campaigns for the nomination to replace Saxby Chambliss in the U.S. Senate. Millions of dollars will be spent on a slew of incendiary TV ads – first in a summer GOP primary, then in an all-but-certain runoff.
It doesn’t have to be that way. The 700,000 or so people likely to cast a GOP ballot next year could leave the decision to a small herd of Georgia Republican activists – sparing the rest of us all that noise and the candidates all that money.
That idea was one of a handful of policy proposals about to be placed before 1,700 delegates at last weekend’s state GOP convention when the meeting was suddenly dissolved. Because 900 weary delegates had left the room.
The proposal is now in the hands of a state Republican party under new management – John Padgett of Athens was elected chairman before Republicans left town – and so we’re unlikely to see any big changes before next year’s Senate race. But 2016, when U.S. Sen. Johnny Isakson is up for re-election, could be another matter.
Two veteran Marietta Board of Education members, Jill Mutimer and Randy Weiner, tell Around Town they will seek a third term in the fall election.
Mutimer, 46, a self-employed financial consultant, has two children, one at West Side Elementary and one at Marietta Middle School. With the support of her husband, Jim Mutimer, she was first elected to the board in 2005.
“While I feel like we’ve accomplished a great deal in the last eight years, we still have goals that we are working toward and hope to achieve,” she said.
RUNNING: Marietta Planning and Zoning Commissioner Jason Waters tells Around Town he plans to run for the Ward 2 seat on the Marietta School Board in this fall’s election. Waters, 37, is former chair of the Marietta Division of the Cobb Chamber and past president of the Leadership Cobb Alumni Association.
A native of Douglasville, he has lived in Marietta since graduating from UGA in 2001 with a finance degree. He is a commercial banker with SunTrust and lives in Lee’s Crossing subdivision with his wife Katie (a former teacher at Hickory Hills and A.L. Burruss elementaries) and their two young children.
POLITICS: Among those who shelled out at least $10,000 each to serve as “sponsors” at Sunday’s Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee fundraiser with President Barack Obama were former Gov. Roy Barnes and former U.S. Rep. Buddy Darden of Marietta.
The event took place at the Arthur M. Blank family office on Howell Mill Road in Atlanta. The event invitation suggested contributions of $10,000 per couple or $32,400 per person.
KENNESAW — Despite objections from six county residents, Mayor Mark Mathews cast the deciding vote Monday night to allow an electronic billboard to go up on Cobb Parkway.
The Kennesaw City Council was unanimous in its desire to bring the Green Roof Inn into the city, but when it came to approving a variance that would allow for an LED billboard on the northeast corner of the property, it split.
The council voted 2-2, with council members Bruce Jenkins and Cris Eaton-Welsh against, to approve the variance with conditions. The mayor cast the deciding vote in favor.
The council voted unanimously to rezone the property from county general commercial to city general commercial and to annex the 1.8 acres from Cobb County into the city.