Congressman Thomas Massie and Boone County Judge Executive Gary Moore.

Congressman Thomas Massie and Boone County Judge Executive Gary Moore.

FLORENCE – U.S. Rep. Thomas Massie (R-Ky) believes elimination of omnibus funding bills would help break the frequent budget gridlocks in Congress.

To meet the September 30 deadline for funding the government, lawmakers in recent years have lumped proposed appropriations from 12 subcommittees into a single bill. Congress also has passed continuing resolutions that keep the government financially afloat for an extended period beyond the deadline.

“We need for Congress to do separate appropriations bills,” said, Massie, who represents the Fourth Congressional District, which includes Northern Kentucky. “If we do it in separate bills, we don’t run as much risk of shutting down the government.”

Massie spoke to the Florence Rotary Club on Monday, October 18. He discussed the budget gridlock and a transportation bill he co-sponsored, but declined to comment on the presidential race.

“If you’re waiting for me to talk about the presidential election, you can leave now” he joked.

Massie said omnibus bills are particularly problematic because lawmakers may get no more than three days to consider a 2,000-page document and partisan jockeying over specific appropriations snags the process.

If Congress considered each appropriation bill separately, “by the time we get to September 30, we would have six of 12 or 8 of 12 finished,” Massie said.

Massie sits on three House committees: Committee on Oversight and Government Reform; Committee on Science, Space and Technology; and Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure.

He calls the Oversight committee the “theatre committee” because lawmakers tend “to well up in righteous indignation and attack someone they’ve never met before.” He prefers the Transportation committee because of the importance of the issues to Kentuckians and the bipartisanship of committee members, he said.

Massie co-sponsored an airline ticket fee bill (H.R. 5563) earlier this year with two GOP colleagues from Florida, Rep. David Jolly and Rep. Gus Bilirakis. The measure would give more control to local airports in decisions on ticket fees and how to use the moneys raised to make improvements.

The legislation would shift financing of airport facilities away from government subsidies and other regulations that limit the types of improvements airports can make, Massie said. The Competitive Enterprise Institute, a non-profit public policy agency that supports the measure, said the bill would promote airline competition and lower airfares.

“Money is a source of control over airports,” Massie said. The bill would reduce a federal ticket tax and let airports decide what to charge ticketholders for enplanement.


Everything But The House Visits Florence Rotary

October 17, 2016

FLORENCE – How can you attract half a million potential buyers to your estate auction? Move it online … everything except the house, that is. That’s the premise behind a Cincinnati-based business named (you guessed it!) Everything But The House (EBTH) that has turned traditional estate sales into a virtual auction with the reach and […]

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Mayor Whalen Updates Rotarians

October 3, 2016

FLORENCE – The city of Florence continues to see small and large investments in commercial and residential development, according to Mayor Diane Whalen. Florence has grown into the eighth largest city in Kentucky in recent years with a current population of 32,000 residents. More than 100,000 people a day come to the city to work, […]

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Judge Moore Updates Rotarians

September 27, 2016

FLORENCE – Corporate growth isn’t the most important indicator of the health of Boone County to Judge-Executive Gary Moore. It’s the quality of the growth that matters to him. “We want to ensure the growth is adding to the quality of life in the community, not just putting more pressure on roads and infrastructure,” he said. […]

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Dinsmore History Visits Rotarians

September 7, 2016

FLORENCE – When people ask Barbara Bardes what period of history the Dinsmore Homestead in Burlington depicts, she says “150 years.” Visitors to the home, built in 1842, will find an accumulation of personal possessions, household goods and letters accumulated by the Dinsmore family over the century and a half the single family owned the […]

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NKU Coach Whitaker Charts Course for Women’s Division I Tournament

August 30, 2016

FLORENCE – Northern Kentucky University women’s basketball coach Camryn Whitaker believes a berth in the NCAA Division I postseason tournament is within reach in the Norse’s first year of eligibility. “We’ve set our goals high, and I have high expectations,” Whitaker said. “They’re not unrealistic goals. We’re not rebuilding. We have what it takes to […]

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Jeannine Kreinbrink Brings Civil War History to Rotarians

August 16, 2016

FLORENCE – If you happen upon a long trench or a U-shaped mound atop a hillside in Northern Kentucky, you may have stumbled upon hallowed historical ground, according to Jeannine Kreinbrink. The Union army built an eight-mile arc of defensive fortifications across Northern Kentucky in September 1862 to block Confederate troops marching toward Cincinnati. The […]

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Interact Students Share Dominican Republic Experience

August 8, 2016

FLORENCE – Last year, the video produced by the Interact Club of Boone County to document a trip to the Dominican Republic highlighted the students’ activities. This year, their video focused on the people they helped … and their smiles. “This trip was just as amazing as the first time,” said Alex King, who returned […]

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District Governor Key Visits Florence

July 25, 2016

FLORENCE – District Governor Keith Key urged Florence Rotarians not to lose sight of the power of humanitarian service amid the chaos occurring worldwide. “We are seeing political change sweeping the world,” he said. “We are seeing economic change sweeping the world. We have wiped out the middle class by eliminating the manufacturing industry and […]

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Kent Whitworth Introduces ExploreKYHistory App

July 12, 2016

FLORENCE – Kent Whitworth calls it “history on a stick.” Technology geeks call it a specialized software program for a mobile device. Common folks may call it a history book, a summary of historical markers or a customized tour guide with map. It is ExploreKYHistory, a smartphone app Whitworth introduced to Florence Rotarians at a […]

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