Congressman José E. Serrano

Representing the 15th District of New York

The Serrano Report - Volume XVI, Issue #44

Mar 4, 2019
The Serrano Report

In Washington D.C. 

Congressman Serrano Chairs First Appropriations CJS Subcommittee Hearing

Last week, Congressman Serrano chaired the first Commerce, Justice and Science Appropriation Subcommittee hearing of the 116th Congress: Understanding the Changing Climate System and the Role of Climate Research.  Dr. Neil Jacobs, Assistant Secretary of Commerce for Environmental Observation and Prediction and Deputy Administrator of NOAA; and Dr. Michael Freilich, who serves as the Director of NASA’s Earth Science Division testified at the hearing.
"Both NOAA and NASA have critical missions. What they are observing both above and below us is affecting us in many ways. This hearing will help us learn from two leading experts about how our climate is changing, how that will impact our country and economy in the short and long-term, what research these agencies are conducting to help prepare us for the future, and how strategic investments from our subcommittee will help meet those challenges," said Congressman Serrano in his opening remarks at the hearing

"As I have said many times, it is more than evident that our climate is changing and doing so very rapidly. The people of Puerto Rico saw this firsthand as they experienced the largest natural disaster in their history with Hurricane Maria. From the droughts fueling wildfires out west in California to hurricanes devastating the continental southeast, year after year, our earth is experiencing record temperatures that cause extreme weather, affect food supplies, and devastate local economies. The federal government must have the tools and resources it needs to study these changes, so we can prepare and respond accordingly. The CJS subcommittee leads the way in this effort," he added.

To watch Congressman Serrano's full opening remarks and the entire hearing, click here:  


Congressman Serrano Reintroduces Anti-Hunger Legislation

Also last week, Congressman Serrano reintroduced in the 116th Congress the Anti-Hunger Empowerment Act of 2019. The bill seeks to change administrative cost provisions within the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) to increase its financial capacity to assist underserved communities facing hunger insecurity. The bill was cosponsored by Rep. Hastings, Rep. Velazquez, Rep. Lee, Rep. Watson Coleman, Rep. Thompson, Rep. Omar, Rep. McGovern, Rep. Rush, Rep. Nadler, Rep. Blumenauer and Rep. Espaillat.

“There is no reason why any child or adult should go hungry in this country, where resources are plentiful and tons of food go to waste every year. The Anti-Hunger Empowerment Act seeks to promote the use of Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) resources. It would also allow food pantries, soup kitchens, and other charitable feeding programs to expand their services and to provide more meals in communities where many residents face financial and food insecurity- including in The Bronx. Every household should have access to basic necessities, including nutritious food, regardless of their economic background. These changes will help achieve that goal,” said Congressman Serrano.

Congressman Serrano on President Trump’s Emergency Declaration

Congressman Serrano released the following statement in response to President Trump’s national emergency declaration to reallocate previously appropriated funding for the construction of a wall along the southern border:

“The vast majority of Americans don’t want a wall, and millions of Americans are still suffering the effects of the longest shut down in American history last month. We thought we had averted a crisis by signing a spending bill to keep the government open but instead President Trump is going forward with his decision to manufacture another one by declaring an emergency in order to build a wall. The emergency declaration will take funds away from some of our most sensitive programs and emergency relief efforts. It is unprecedented and inappropriate, and could not come at a worse time for the millions of American citizens living in areas affected by natural disasters in 2017, like Puerto Rico. President Trump promised that Mexico would pay for the wall, but instead, he appears intent of building it on the backs of many of our most vulnerable citizens.  As a Member of the Appropriations Committee, I will do everything in my power to prevent this from happening,” said Congressman Serrano.

In the Bronx

Congressman Serrano and Senator Serrano Host Annual Black History Month Celebration

Last week, Congressman José E. Serrano and New York State Senator José M. Serrano hosted their annual Black History Month Celebration in the Bronx with local community groups, advocates, and elected officials. 

Held at Hostos Community College, the event honored four individuals who have been advocates and community leaders in the Bronx and New York City: NYPD First Deputy Commissioner Benjamin B. Tucker, Justice Elizabeth A. Taylor, NYS Supreme Court, 12th Judicial District, Monica Major, Director of Education and Youth Services, Office of Bronx Borough President Ruben Diaz Jr., Daniel M. Barber, President of NYCHA Jackson Houses’ Resident Association and Chairman - Citywide Council of Presidents.

“I’m always honored to host this event with my son to celebrate and honor the work of our great community leaders and their commitment to justice for all New Yorkers. Their leadership in areas of affordable housing, education, public housing and fair governance is needed now more than ever,” said Congressman José E. Serrano.

“Black History Month is an opportunity to honor the heroes of our past. It is also the ideal time to celebrate the outstanding leaders within our communities who dedicate their lives to public service and have a positive impact on our city, state, and nation. I am honored to recognize such a distinguished group of individuals, whose extraordinary contributions to justice in their respective fields have improved the lives of countless New Yorkers,” said State Senator José M. Serrano.

NYS Senator Serrano, Assemblywomen Reyes, Council Member Gibson and Congressman Serrano. (2/25/19)

Congressman Serrano Attends the State of the Bronx Address

Congressman Serrano joined Bronx Borough President Ruben Diaz Jr. at H.E.R.O High School in the Bronx for his State of the Bronx Address. He joined local Bronx elected officials as well as students from the HOPE-Sustainable South Bronx Program, the program aims to address economic and environmental issues in the South Bronx- and throughout New York City- through a combination of green jobs training, community greening programs, and social enterprise. The State of the Bronx highlighted the ways in which the Bronx is leading the way in addressing climate change, ongoing issues with NYCHA and future plans for the borough.

Left to right: Speaker Heastie, Assemblywomen Reyes, Assemblyman Crespo, New York State Senator Serrano, Bronx District Attorney Clark, and Congressman Serrano. (2/21/19)

Congressman Serrano Meets with AFGE Local 3369

Last month, Congressman Serrano met with Social Security employees from his district in Washington D.C. They are part of the American Federation of Government Employees (AFGE) Local 3369, AFGE is an American labor union representing over 670,000 federal employees. They discussed issues affecting the labor conditions of social security employees as well as how those issues have a negative impact on the services that the Social Security offices across the country provide.

Congressman Serrano Meets with New York State Bar Association

Congressman Serrano met with representatives of the New York State Bar Association (NYSBA) to discuss funding for the Legal Services Corporation (LSC). Congressman Serrano has supported the Legal Services Corporation for many years; it is instrumental in providing civil legal aid to low-income Americans. Many Bronx residents have benefited from their services throughout the years, and as Chairman of the Commerce, Justice and Science Subcommittee of the House Appropriations Committee, Congressman Serrano is making the funding of this agency one of his top priorities.