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Rokita Report for November 21, 2016
Thank you for the opportunity to update you on the work of the 114th Congress. I trust this finds you and your family well, as we work together to bring Hoosier common sense to Washington.
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In this week's Rokita Report
Future Leaders in Indiana's Logistics Community
Logistics is an important industry for Indiana. The industry encompasses our airspace, our roads, our ports, and more. In total, nearly 375,000 Hoosiers work in the industry. Last week, I was honored to be able to recognize some of the future leaders of this industry.
Over seventy college students on eighteen teams from across Indiana competed in the Conexus Logistics Case Competition. The competition challenged students in simulations of logistics situations and encouraged them to seek solutions. In doing so, the students had direct contact with industry leaders. As the teams competed, it was an honor to be able to present awards to the winners. The competition was a positive and proactive way to showcase the talent at Indiana's colleges and universities.
Presenting the award to Purdue University for the Conexus Logistics Case Competition.
The team from Valparaiso University came in first place and the team from the 4th District's Purdue University placed second.
2016 Friends of Farm Bureau Award
Recently, I was honored to receive the "2016 Friend of the Farm Bureau Award" at the Culp Family Farm. It was presented to me by my friend, Indiana Farm Bureau Vice President and Jasper County Commissioner, Kendell Culp.
Recipients for the award are first nominated by their state Farm Bureau organization, and are then approved by the American Farm Bureau Federation's board of directors. Kendell shared with me that I had a perfect voting record of standing up for Hoosier farmers.
Receiving the "Friend of the Farm Bureau Award."
Farmers are the lifeblood of the agriculture industry, the critical component of our food supply, and an important part of Indiana's 4th Congressional District. According to the U.S. Census, there are over 8,000 farms that spread across over 3,000,000 acres of farm land. Corn and soybean are the largest crops and farmers in Indiana's 4th District grow more of those two crops than any of Indiana's other Congressional districts do. Nationwide, the district is the 16th largest grower of corn and 20th largest grower of soybean.
Securing the Expansion of Indianapolis Airport
Indiana's airports continue to improve. The Indianapolis Airport Authority has been awarded nearly $13 million in Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) grants. These grants will pay for additional buses, taxiway rehabilitation, emergency notification equipment, and stormwater management efforts. These funds will benefit Hoosiers by creating 220 direct and indirect jobs. The receipt of these funds was made possible by strong advocacy to the FAA. As the only Hoosier member from the majority party on the Transportation& Infrastructure Committee, I wrote to the agency letting them know the importance of our aviation community.
Indiana's airports serve our state's logistics industry. We are the "Crossroads of America" and thanks to Indianapolis International Airport, we are a leader in cargo. Indianapolis International Airport is the 25th busiest cargo airport in the world. In 2015, the airport shipped out nearly one million tons of cargo.
As a commercially aviator and member of the Subcommittee on Aviation, I know the importance of this industry for our state. In addition to securing this grant for the Indianapolis International Airport, I have helped other Hoosier airports secure grants for needed improvements, including runway expansions in Crawfordsville Municipal Airport and at White County Airport. In addition, I introduced legislation to repeal an onerous medical certificate requirement, the General Aviation Pilot Protection Act, that was incorporated into the FAA reauthorization bill that was signed into law in July. These medical certificates were causing many pilots to give up their wings and were hurting the general aviation industry, which accounts for nearly $6 billion in economic activity statewide.
Congress on Your Corner - DeMotte
The best way for me to hear from you is directly. That is why I enjoy hosting public events throughout the 4th District. At these events no questions are off limits, no reservations are required, and we can engage in a direct dialogue. I take what I hear from you with me as your Representative.
I wanted to let you know about my next such event. Next week, I will be hosting a Congress on Your Corner in Demotte.
Date: Wednesday, October 26
I hope to see you there.
Thank you for your continued interest in Congress and for supporting my efforts to bring Hoosier common sense to Washington. Take care.