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WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Sen. John Kennedy (R-La.) delivered a speech on the Senate floor today urging the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) to conduct a public auction of C-band spectrum to protect American 5G technological innovation.

The FCC is considering a closed-door private auction instead of the public auctions it typically conducts.  The private auction will allow foreign companies to profit from the spectrum sale, and it will lack transparency.

Click here or the photo below to watch.

Highlights:

Monetary value of 5G: “The FCC has held over 100 auctions; they’ve brought in $123 billion. We’ve got these radio waves for 5G that the experts say are worth $60 billion, and instead of auctioning them off and letting everybody fairly compete, these three foreign corporations want the FCC to give them the airwaves and let them auction them off and the foreign companies get to keep the money.”

5G and National Security: “Our job is not to maximize profits for foreign corporations. Our job is to help our people, and this 5G has national security implications. Before we give away these 5G airwaves to a foreign corporation, we need to know who they’re going to give it to. What if they give it to China?”

5G Benefitting Rural Communities: “What I’d like to see us do, and (what) I’m encouraging the FCC to do, is to hold a public auction, take some of that $60 billion they’re going to get and use it for rural broadband to make sure that the people who live in rural areas get taken care of as well as the people who live in the cities.”

Potential of 5G technology: “Surgeons will be able to conduct surgery through the internet thousands of miles away from each other. We’ll have driverless cars … farmers, through 5G technology, will be informed well in advance when there are diseases encroaching on their crops.  We won’t have to sign our name anymore; 5G will make possible what’s called personal heat signatures. It’s going to change the world.”

Keeping the spectrum auction transparent and public: “We need a level playing field. We need competition. Competition is a moral good. Everybody needs to get an equal bite at the apple. This doesn’t need to be done in a backroom swampy deal.”

 

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WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Sens. John Kennedy (R-La.) and Bill Cassidy, M.D. (R-La.) joined a Senate resolution today to condemn the U.S. House of Representatives’ undemocratic impeachment proceedings and encourage the House to follow established precedent and provide President Donald J. Trump with his constitutional rights and protections. 

Historically, when the House moved to impeach a president, the full House voted on a formal impeachment inquiry.  In this case, Speaker Pelosi replaced the vote with an announcement at a press conference.  Her press conference led to a string of closed-door hearings and investigations that deny President Trump due process and deny the American people transparency.

This resolution calls on the House to follow precedent by having a vote to initiate a formal impeachment inquiry, provide President Trump with due process and allow Republican members to participate fully in the impeachment proceedings, including the authority to issue subpoenas.

“Democrats in the House of Representatives ditched precedent, fairness and the Constitution to try to fix an election that they lost three years ago,” said Sen. Kennedy. “The House has yet to vote on a formal impeachment inquiry, and in the meantime they have stripped President Trump of his right to due process and denied the American people transparency.  We can’t just ignore centuries of precedent and the protections set up in our Constitution.  Democrats musts think the American people are really stupid.”

“Impeachment proceedings should be conducted in full view of the American people, not behind closed doors. House Democrats’ actions are unprecedented. President Trump is entitled to his due process rights, and Americans deserve transparency from their government,” said Dr. Cassidy.

 

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WASHINGTON, D.C. –U.S. Sen. John Kennedy (R-La.) announced today that the State of Louisiana will receive $101.33 million through the Gulf of Mexico Energy Security Act (GOMESA), which directs a percentage of Gulf energy revenues and disbursements back to Louisiana.  

This funding will support conservation efforts and coastal restoration in Louisiana bringing new jobs to the state.  Louisiana’s beautiful coast fuels the economy through tourism, fishing, hunting and other industries that can’t survive without a healthy coastline.

Gulf energy production continues to increase driving American energy independence and generating more revenue for the country.  As these revenues increase, it’s vital that Louisiana receives a greater revenue share to invest back into coastal restoration. 

Sen. Kennedy cosponsored the COASTAL Act of 2019 that will increase energy revenue sharing for Gulf states by eliminating the GOMESA revenue sharing cap.  Under the current cap, revenue shares for Louisiana, Alabama, Mississippi and Texas are capped at $500 million.  This legislation also gives Louisiana a bigger cut of the revenues by increasing revenue shares for Gulf Coast states from 37.5% to 50%. 

“Louisiana is one of the top energy producers in the country, and these revenues generated from Gulf energy production will support critical coastal restoration in Louisiana,” said Sen. Kennedy.  “As energy production increases, Louisiana deserves a greater share of the revenue.  This legislation helps put money into coastal restoration to ensure the health of our coastline for decades to come.”

 

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WASHINGTON, D.C. –U.S. Sen. John Kennedy (R-La.), chairman of the Financial Services and General Government (FSGG) Appropriations Subcommittee, chaired a hearing Thursday on the United States’ role in the race to implement 5G technology.

Sen. Kennedy has advocated for a public, government-run C-band spectrum auction that will set up the United States to be a world leader in new 5G technology. A public auction will ensure that the process is transparent and that the funds produced from the auction will remain in the United States. The alternative, a private auction, will be a closed-door process that will allow foreign companies to profit from the auction’s sales.

A public auction of the C-band spectrum is imperative to bringing 5G technology to rural communities.  In a public auction, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) will prioritize taxpayer interests and expedite 5G deployment in the U.S.

 “The United States is in a race with the world to be a leader in new 5G technology.  A transparent public auction is the only way to ensure that taxpayer money is managed responsibly and that the United States has a fighting chance of winning this race,” said Sen. Kennedy. “We should not allow foreign companies to profit off of an asset that the U.S. has jurisdiction over.  I want to protect and promote American innovation in 5G technology, and it all begins with a public auction of the C-band spectrum.”

 

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WASHINGTON, D.C. –U.S. Sen. John Kennedy (R-La.), chairman of the Financial Services and General Government (FSGG) Appropriations Subcommittee, chaired a hearing today on the Federal Communication Commission’s 5G spectrum auction program.

Sen. Kennedy heard testimonies from FCC Chairman Ajit Pai, President of Citizens Against Government Waste Tom Schatz and President of the Taxpayers Protection Alliance David Williams.

“A day does not go by that we don’t hear about the race to 5G and the need to get there quickly, and we do need to get there quickly,” said Sen. Kennedy. “However, none of us should be willing to tolerate a situation where rural Louisianians, or rural Kansans, or rural West Virginians or any rural Americans are left behind.  Congress and the administration must work together to make sure that every American gets there, so that when the United States wins the 5G race-and we will-we will win it together.  The C-Band Spectrum is an integral part of the 5G debate and how we accomplish that end.” 

Click here or the photo below to listen to Sen. Kennedy’s opening statement:

 

 

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WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Sen. John Kennedy (R-La.) announced today the Delta Regional Authority is awarding $2.3 million in grants for 16 projects in Louisiana.  These projects are aimed at improving public infrastructure and workforce development.

“These are important investments that will improve the quality of life for people across Louisiana,” said Sen. Kennedy. “From improving water and sewer systems to preparing students for technical jobs, the work by the Delta Regional Authority will help our state grow in a positive direction.”

LOUISIANA INVESTMENT PROJECTS

1. Tallulah Sewer System Improvements | Tallulah, LA: $313,743

2. Richardson Medical Center HVAC System Replacement | Rayville, LA: $266,822

3. Chalmette Wastewater Treatment Plant Replacement | Chalmette, LA: $200,000

4. Delta Water System Improvements | Delta, LA: $200,000

5. Franklin Wastewater System Improvements | Franklin, LA: $150,000

6. Grosse Tete Water System Enhancements | Grosse Tete, LA: $150,000 

7. Springhill Wastewater Treatment Plant Replacement | Springhill, LA: $150,000

8. Nunez Community College Aerospace Labs and Makerspace | Chalmette, LA: $150,000;

9. Concordia Parish Sewer System Consolidation | Vidalia, LA: $150,000

10. Allen Parish GIS System | Oberlin, LA: $100,000

11. Baton Rouge IT Apprenticeship Program | Baton Rouge, LA: $100,000

12. Oak Grove Industrial Building Repairs | Oak Grove, LA: $100,000 

13. Dixie Inn Sewer System Improvements | Minden, LA: $99,750 

14. Chatham Water Booster Station Renovation | Chatham, LA: $80,000

15. Bienville Water Well Improvements | Bienville, LA:  DRA Investment: $71,768

16. Baton Rouge GIS System | Baton Rouge, LA: $36,750 

 

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WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Sen. John Kennedy (R-La.) released the following statement today on President Donald Trump’s upcoming visit to Louisiana:

“I urged President Trump to come to Louisiana and rally voters because this election is important to Louisiana’s future.  Under the current governor, taxes are sky high and families are struggling,” said Sen. Kennedy.  “President Trump cares about Louisiana, and he wants to help put this state on a better path.  I am thrilled that he is coming back to Louisiana.”

WASHINGTON, D.C. – In a move that will benefit American taxpayers, U.S. Sen. John Kennedy (R-La.) secured language in the Financial Services and General Government Appropriations Act of 2020 that will free up C-band spectrum for 5G technology through a public auction.

Everything from self-driving cars to cellphones will need 5G wireless technology.  The federal government is trying to make more C-band spectrum available in order to deploy the technology.  At issue is whether to conduct a multi-billion dollar, closed-door spectrum deal that would mostly benefit foreign-owned satellite companies.

“The choice is clear.  A private sale has too many pitfalls, including the risk of an inefficient deployment of 5G spectrum that will shut out our rural families.  Our country is great because of competition,” said Sen. Kennedy.  “A transparent public auction will save American taxpayers millions of dollars.  It will ensure that you can watch the Saints win the Super Bowl regardless of whether you live in New Orleans or Mamou.”

Last week, Sen. Kennedy wrote a letter to U.S. Sens. Roger Wicker (R-Miss.) and John Thune (R-S.D.) explaining the importance of holding a public auction.  A copy of the letter can be found here.

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WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Sen. John Kennedy (R-La.) announced today a commitment from the U.S. Department of Treasury to help Americans redeem  $26 billion in unredeemed savings bonds.

Treasury will create an online tool that will allow individuals to verify against Treasury records if they have any unredeemed savings bonds dated after 1974.  Treasury will also provide shareable links to states so the tool can be promoted through Unclaimed Property Program websites.  The records for the newer bonds are in the best physical condition.  For the records on the older bonds dating back to World War II, Treasury will gather expert opinions and states’ input on how to digitize them. 

“This money belongs in the hands of the American people.  It shouldn’t be under lock and key at Treasury.  Grandmothers purchased these bonds for grandchildren.  Great aunts and great uncles bought bonds to support the war effort,” said Sen. Kennedy.  “I want to thank President Trump, Secretary Mnuchin and Senate Appropriations Chairman Richard Shelby for working with me to do right by the American people.”

Sen. Kennedy provided $25 million for digitizing the bond records in the Financial Services and General Government Appropriations Act of 2020.  The bill is pending Senate action. Sen. Kennedy also filed the Unclaimed Savings Bond Act (USB Act) earlier this year to allow states to put the names and addresses for the bonds in their Unclaimed Property databases.

Some states estimate that their residents have more than $1 billion in matured, unclaimed savings bonds.  Louisiana estimates that the amount owed to Louisiana residents tops $300 million.

Through legislation and meetings with senior Treasury officials, including a phone call with Treasury Secretary Steven T. Mnuchin last week, Sen. Kennedy has been working on a solution that will reunite American citizens with the proceeds of their savings bonds.  Many people probably are unaware the bonds even exist because they were misplaced over the years. 

For a state-by-state estimate of what’s owed to people, click HERE.

Click on the photo below to listen to Sen. Kennedy’s floor speech on the issue.

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WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Sen. John Kennedy (R-La.) announced today that he has joined the bipartisan Senate India Caucus, which fosters a good working relationship between the U.S. and India.

“I joined the Senate India Caucus because the U.S. and India are important energy partners.  The caucus brings together a diverse group of people to focus on a number of issues, including economic development,” said Sen. Kennedy.  “Through a partnership with Petronet LNG, Louisiana workers will supply low-cost energy to India for years to come.  There are more partnerships to be made. ”

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