Hurd on the Hill: Finding Solutions & Fixing Problems

October 19, 2015
Hurd on the Hill: Local Columns
Setting the Agenda to Prioritize Everyday Americans

Over the past month many of you have heard about the circus in Washington. I am just as frustrated as you that some folks in DC are more focused on inside the beltway politics rather than doing what is best for the American people.  But this is my promise to you. No matter who is in leadership in the House, I will remain focused on my job – representing the people in the 23rd Congressional District of Texas. In fact that is what I have done since you sent me to represent you in Washington.

By the end of our first seven months, the House had already passed 190 bills. The average is 125. We’re now at 205 bills passed by the House, which includes six appropriations bills (and all 12 appropriations bills have passed out of committee). Unfortunately, the Democrats in the Senate keep blocking the appropriations bills because they don’t think Congress is spending enough of your money.  Also, the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA), which provides the long-term budget and planning authority for our men and women in uniform, is being held up by a veto threat from the President.

Highlights of my work on behalf of constituents include the following:

Honoring our Veterans and First Responders:

  • The Hire More Heroes Act
  • The Veteran’s Entrepreneurship Act (Signed into law!)
  • The Border Jobs for Veterans Act (Signed into law!)
  • The Clay Hunt Suicide Prevention for American Veterans Act (Signed into law!)
  • The Don’t Tax Our Fallen Public Safety Heroes Act (Signed into law!)

Promoting American Energy Security:

  • The Keystone XL Pipeline Act (Vetoed by the President)
  • Lifting the Oil Export Ban
  • Against the EPA Waters of The United States (WOTUS) rule

Protecting Small Business:

  • The Save the American Workers Act
  • The Promoting Job Creation and Reducing Small Business Burdens Act
  • The Unfunded Mandates Information and Transparency Act
  • The Small Business Regulatory Flexibility Improvements Act
  • The America’s Small Business Tax Relief Act
  • The Protecting Affordable Coverage for Employees Act (Signed into law!)

Protecting the Most Vulnerable:

  • Twelve Anti-Human Trafficking Bills (One signed into law!)
  • The No Taxpayer Funding for Abortion Act

Sixty-seven of the bills we’ve passed made it all the way to the President’s desk for his signature, including a Medicare reform bill which was the first real entitlement reform bill enacted in decades that provides $2.5 trillion in savings. It helped ensure better access to Medicare doctors for our seniors and kept the 38 rural health care centers in our district funded.

Two of my own bills were signed into law as well. The first one clarified the overtime payment structure for our brave Border Patrol Agents, saving them from a $300 - $1000 pay cut per pay period. Thousands of border agents in our district were directly impacted by this legislation.

The second, The DHS Duplication Reduction Act, will make the Department of Homeland Security figure out which of their IT systems are duplicative, saving taxpayers money. Considering this is the first time since 2008 that a U.S. Representative from Texas 23 has gotten a bill signed into law, our district is definitely benefitting from this productive Congress.

Some folks may want to only talk about what’s wrong with Washington. And I’ll be the first to admit that we still have a long way to go to make sure that Congress is working for the people to make government more effective and more efficient. We have a lot of work to do and many obstacles to tackle, but I am going to continue to push for the House to keep up the pace and continue to prioritize the solutions that everyday Americans are clamoring for. 


A former undercover CIA officer, entrepreneur and cybersecurity expert, Will Hurd is the U.S. Representative for the 23rd Congressional District of Texas. In Washington, he serves as Vice Chair of the Maritime and Border Security Subcommittee on the Committee for Homeland Security, and as the Chairman of the Information Technology Subcommittee on the Oversight and Government Reform Committee.