Donovan Marks One-Year Anniversary in Office
Staten Island, NY—May 12, 2016.... Congressman Dan Donovan (NY-11) today marked his one-year anniversary in Congress by reflecting on the legislative achievements of the past twelve months and reinforced his commitment to results-oriented leadership to break through Washington gridlock. Since taking office on May 12, 2015, Donovan shepherded through a permanent extension of health benefits for 9/11 heroes, joined forces with Sen. Schumer to fight off a $100-million annual cut to New York City’s mass transit funding; and won a comprehensive federal response to Staten Island and South Brooklyn’s opioid epidemic. In fact, the Comprehensive Opioid Abuse Reduction Act will pass the House today with a Donovan amendment authorizing grants to treat expecting mothers struggling with addiction.
As New York City’s sole majority representative in Congress, Donovan has also focused intensely on homeland security issues. In February, his advocacy for New York City’s security needs and Superstorm Sandy victims earned him the chairmanship of the influential House Subcommittee on Emergency Preparedness, Response, and Communications. In his first hearing, Donovan examined the negative impacts of President Obama’s proposed homeland security cuts to New York City.
“I can’t believe how fast this year has gone,” reflected Congressman Donovan. “When I was sworn in a year ago today, I promised to work with anyone who had the best interests of our district, our city and our nation at heart, and because of that we have been able to cut through gridlock and tackle some very important issues. Working together, we ensured 7,000 heroes in my district don’t have to worry about their health care fund running dry; New York City has a long-term commitment from the feds for consistent mass transit funding; and substance abuse treatment providers who have been in the trenches for years will finally see more resources coming their way.”
He continued, “While it’s important to reflect on what we’ve done, we also need to know where we’re going. In the coming weeks, I will be sharing my vision for the future and what we need to do to get this country back on the right track.”
In the past year, Donovan has introduced four bills, two of which passed the House of Representatives. The first, the Securing the Cities Act, permanently extends the Securing the Cities program, which provides cities – including New York – with training and equipment to detect radiological material. Dirty bombs have long been a concern for law enforcement, and Securing the Cities is integral to preventing an attack. The second bill, the Flood Insurance Mitigation and Policyholder Protection Act, passed the House as part of a larger package. It eliminates the opportunity for damage inspectors to fraudulently alter their reports after a disaster, which was the subject of a major 60 Minutes investigation.
Beyond his legislative accomplishments, Donovan has established himself as an independent voice for Staten Island and South Brooklyn. He has aggressively fought the administration when necessary, particularly on Obamacare’s crushing premium increases and HUD’s absurd policy of punishing landlords who refuse to consider tenant applications from criminals. On other issues, Donovan has bucked his party. His independence was put on display in his first month in office, when he voted against a bill to expedite the Trans-Pacific Partnership trade deal. Donovan believes the deal is not good for American workers, who would be at a disadvantage in competing with laborers in countries with lower wages and fewer employee protections.
A member of the House Foreign Affairs Committee, Donovan voiced his vehement opposition to the Iran nuclear deal. The regime’s provocations since the deal was completed – including a Hebrew message on the side of a missile that read “Israel Must be Wiped Out” – have validated Donovan’s position that Iran cannot be trusted to uphold its end of the bargain. Further, the stunning admission from President Obama’s Deputy National Security Advisory, Ben Rhodes, of manipulating the press to spin a distorted narrative about the Iran negotiations reinforces Donovan’s position that the Administration put reconciliation with an enemy ahead of America’s allies.
Looking ahead to his future in Congress, Donovan will soon release a comprehensive policy vision outlining his goals and priorities.