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Frank Pallone on Environment

Democratic Representative (NJ-6)

 


Endorsed by Sierra Club for pro-environmental issues

Sierra Club Independent Action PAC website: To ensure the Sierra Club only endorses the best environmental candidates, our grassroots process begins at the chapter level. State volunteers examine each candidate's record and distribute questionnaires to candidates who meet our criteria. Throughout our process, volunteers and staff evaluate the environmental and public health records of candidates and their experience of being a true champion on our issues.

2022 endorsements include NEW JERSEY House, District 6: Frank Pallone.

Source: Sierra Club 2022 endorsements for NJ Congress , Jul 2, 2021

Relax restrictions on over-fishing to help fishermen

Sen. Charles Schumer and Rep. Frank Pallone have introduced a bill called The Flexibility in Rebuilding American Fisheries Act. "Flexibility" means bending to the will of fishermen who want to keep vacuuming up depleted fish populations before they have a chance to recover.

The bill would poke holes in the Magnuson-Stevens Act, the basic law governing fishing in federal waters. The act imposes ambitious timetables for rebuilding fish stocks and gives scientists a say in setting limits.

The bill would allow the government to consider the economic consequences of fishing restrictions, and prolong the deadlines for rebuilding fish stocks. But the fluke fishery--to name one of many--has not yet been rebuilt. The point of Magnuson-Stevens was to give impartial scientists, not self-interested fishermen, a greater say in deciding how many fish to take from the sea. The health of the oceans has never benefited from putting

Source: New York Times on 2013 N.J. Senate race , Jun 12, 2009

Voted YES on $2 billion more for Cash for Clunkers program.

Congressional Summary:Emergency supplemental appropriations of $2 billion for the Consumer Assistance to Recycle and Save (CARS) Program.

Proponent's argument to vote Yes:Rep. OBEY (D, WI-7): The cash for clunkers program has proven even more wildly popular than its strongest supporters had predicted. Just last month, Congress passed the program, which provided up to $4,500 if you trade in your old gas guzzler for a new car that gets better mileage. That was done in the hopes of spurring some new car sales and encouraging people to be a little more environmentally friendly. We provided $1 billion in the supplemental to get it going, enough for about 250,000 sales--which was just about exhausted in one week. This bill transfers $2 billion from the Department of Energy's Innovative Technology Loan Guarantee program, which doesn't expect to award funding until late next year.

Opponent's argument to vote No:Rep. LEWIS (R, CA-41): In the majority's haste to slam legislation with no time for consideration or amendments, we are now seeing the effects of such shortsighted martial law tactics.

Senator Feinstein tried to negotiate some changes to improve the program but was told that it was this way or the highway. Not one hearing on the Cash for Clunkers program, not one hearing on how the first billion dollars has been spent, not one hearing on how much money the program will need to get through the fiscal year.

Many of my colleagues will say, This is a great program, and it is necessary for the revitalization of the car industry. I'm not really going to argue with those goals. However, are we sure this program is working like it's supposed to? I don't think so. This program has only been up and running 1 week. If that is how the government is going to handle billion-dollar programs affecting all Americans, I ask, Whatever will we do if the administration takes control of our health care system?

Reference: Cash for Clunkers bill; Bill H.R. 3435 ; vote number 2009-H682 on Jul 31, 2009

Voted YES on protecting free-roaming horses and burros.

Congressional Summary:
  1. Ensure that acreage available for wild and free-roaming horses and burros is at least equal to the acreage where they were found in 1971
  2. update the inventory of such horses and burros annually
  3. maintain a thriving natural ecological balance on lands where such horses and burros are found
  4. establish sanctuaries for such horses and burros
  5. research and implement enhanced fertility control for mares & stallions.

Proponent's argument to vote Yes:Rep. NICK RAHALL (D, WV-3): Earlier this year, the BLM made a truly shocking announcement. This Federal agency announced future plans to destroy, i.e., slaughter, 30,000 healthy wild horses and burros entrusted to their care by the American people. How in the world can a Federal agency be considering massive slaughter of animals the law says they are supposed to be protecting? The bill before us gives the agency as many options as possible to avoid destroying these animals.

Opponent's argument to vote No:Rep. DOC HASTINGS (R, WA-4): Across our Nation, Americans are struggling to pay their bills; 9.5% of Americans are out of work. With this backdrop, what is the response of this Democrat Congress to record unemployment and skyrocketing deficits? Their response is to create a $700 million welfare program for wild horses and burros. If the American people want an illustration of just how out of touch this Congress has become on spending, they need to look no further. In the last Congress, the House passed legislation to ban the commercial slaughter of wild horses and burros, that cost taxpayers less than $500,000 a year. Now we're looking at a bill that, again, bans slaughter of these animals but then proceeds to spend $700 million to create a new welfare program for wild horses. Republicans are focused on creating the jobs in this country, but this Democrat Congress seems to be more worried about wild burros and wild horses.

Reference: Restore Our American Mustangs Act; Bill H.R.1018 ; vote number 2009-H577 on Jul 17, 2009

Voted YES on environmental education grants for outdoor experiences.

Congressional Summary:

Proponent's argument to vote Yes:Rep. JOHN SARBANES (D, MD-3): This bill creates a new National Capacity Environmental Education grant program for which education associations apply competitively for grants that would fund model programs that get children into nature and really have them experiencing the environment.

Rep. BUCK McKEON (R, CA-25): This bill incorporates scientifically-based and technology-driven teaching methods into environmental education. Unfortunately, the new National Capacity Environmental Education Program is duplicative of the existing environmental education program already being run by the EPA. Still, I do not intend to oppose its passage.

Opponent's argument to vote No:Rep. MICHELE BACHMANN (R, MN-6): H.R. 3036 continues our Nation down the ill-fated road of shifting control of school curricula away from the parents and teachers and local school boards who best know what their children need into the hands of Federal Government and its one-size-fits-all approach. To best serve our children's educational needs, local school boards need flexibility to target resources where they are needed most. The needs of individual school districts are not homogenous and are most certainly not best understood by bureaucrats in Washington. This bill represents a step in the wrong direction. Forcing local school districts to direct scarce resources away from core curricula to serve a political agenda will only further suppress the academic performance of America's next generation.

Reference: No Child Left Inside Act; Bill H.R.3036 ; vote number 2008-H614 on Sep 18, 2008

Voted YES on $9.7B for Amtrak improvements and operation thru 2013.

Congressional Summary:
Source: Beach Protection Act (S.2844) 08-S2844 on Apr 10, 2008

Regulate all dog breeders down to kennels of 50 dogs.

Pallone co-sponsored PUPS: Puppy Uniform Protection and Safety Act

Congressional Summary:Amends the Animal Welfare Act to define a "high volume retail breeder" as a person who, in commerce, for compensation or profit: has an ownership interest in or custody of one or more breeding female dogs; and sells more than 50 of the offspring of such dogs for use as pets in any one-year period. Considers such a breeder of dogs to be a dealer.

Promulgates requirements for the exercise of dogs at facilities owned or operated by high volume retail breeders, including requiring daily access to exercise that allows the dogs to move sufficiently in a way that is not forced, repetitive, or restrictive; and is in an area that is spacious, cleaned at least once a day, free of infestation by pests or vermin, and designed to prevent the dogs from escaping.

Opponent's Comments (GSDCA, the German Shepherd Dog Club of America):In the past, legislation has excluded home/hobby breeders. This bill would, for the first time, require home/hobby breeders to follow the strict USDA requirements, such as engineering standards designed for large commercial kennels and not homes. Such regulations would exceedingly difficult to meet in a home/residential breeding environment. If passed, PUPS would disastrously reduce purposely-bred pups for the public.

There is nothing in this bill that changes the status of already known substandard kennel violators. There is no increase in funding for additional inspectors, nor is increased inspection evaluation education included.

Dogs purposely bred for showing, trialing or other events often are not bred for several years due to many different reasons. Some of these dogs may never be bred, yet are included in the count.

Working kennels maintain a large dog population while they are evaluating dogs; if the dogs do not work out for the purpose for which they were intended, they are often sold as pets. This could bring those working/training kennels under USDA regulations.

Source: HR835/S707 11-H0835 on Feb 28, 2011

Sponsored allowing longer than 10 years to rebuild depleted fisheries.

Pallone sponsored Flexibility and Access in Rebuilding American Fisheries Act

Congressional Summary:

Co-sponsor's explanation: (Rep. Walter B. Jones, Dec. 16, 2011): H.R. 3061 would allow the 10-year time period for rebuilding fisheries to be extended under certain common-sense circumstances. In allowing such flexibility, the bill would provide for timely restoration of healthy fisheries while also preventing fishermen from being put out of business because of the rigid, arbitrary timelines contained in the Magnuson Act.

Opponents' explanation Pew Environmental Group, April 7, 2009, www.endoverfishing.org): This bill is designed to weaken the Magnuson-Stevens Act (MSA), the nation's primary law governing management of US ocean fish. This bill would:

Source: H3061/S632 11-H3061 on Sep 21, 2011

Member of House Natural Resources Committee.

Pallone is a member of the House Natural Resources Committee

The U.S. House Committee on Natural Resources, or Natural Resources Committee, has jurisdiction over issues of:

Source: U.S. House of Representatives website, www.house.gov 11-HC-NRC on Feb 3, 2011

Rated 75% by HSLF, indicating a pro-animal welfare voting record.

Pallone scores 75% by the Humane Society on animal rights issues

112th Mid-Term Humane Scorecard: The Humane Society Legislative Fund has posted the final version of the 2011 Humane Scorecard, where you can track the performance of your federal lawmakers on key animal protection issues during last year. We rated legislators based on their voting behavior on measures such as agribusiness subsidies, lethal predator control, and the Endangered Species Act; their cosponsorship of priority bills on puppy mills, horse slaughter, animal fighting, and chimps in research; their support for funding the enforcement of animal welfare laws; and their leadership on animal protection. All of the priority bills whose cosponsorships we're counting enjoy strong bipartisan support; in the House, each of the four now has more than 150 cosponsors.

The Humane Scorecard is not a perfect measuring tool, but creating some reasonable yardstick and allowing citizens to hold lawmakers accountable is central to our work. When the Humane Scorecard comes out each year, it helps clarify how the animal protection movement is doing geographically, by party affiliation, and in other categories. It helps us chart our course for animals by seeing where we have been effective, and where we need to improve.

Source: HSLF website 12-HumaneH on Jan 13, 2012

Extend to 2023 Superfund hazardous waste cleanup.

Pallone co-sponsored Superfund Reinvestment Act

Congressional summary: Authorizes the use of funds in the Hazardous Substance Superfund for environmental cleanup costs under the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act of 1980 (CERCLA). Provides that disbursements of the Hazardous Substance Superfund:

  1. shall not be counted as new deficit for purposes of the Balanced Budget and Emergency Deficit Control Act of 1985, or the Statutory Pay-As-You-Go Act of 2010;
  2. shall be exempt from any general budget limitations; and
  3. shall be available only for the purposes specified in CERCLA.
      Authorizes Superfund through Dec. 31, 2023.

      Proponent's argument in favor (Sponsor's introductory remarks): Last week, the House passed legislation [outlined below] to weaken and fragment the already underfunded federal Superfund program. I am reintroducing legislation to reauthorize Superfund taxes on polluting industries; and provide more funds to clean up toxic waste sites. The Superfund program has resulted in the cleanup of more than 1,000 toxic waste sites. In the majority of cases, EPA works with the parties who have been found responsible for the pollution and they pay for the cleanup. [My bill] will reinstate Superfund taxes [on oil, chemicals, and corporations] to their previous levels.

      Opponent's argument against: (Chamber of Commerce's July 29 2013 letter supporting those House-passed bills): The US Chamber of Commerce strongly supports HR2279, the "Reducing Excessive Deadline Obligations Act;" HR2318, the "Federal Facility Accountability Act;" and HR2226, the "Federal and State Partnership for Environmental Protections Act." These three bills aim at modernizing CERCLA. HR2279 removes two impractical and unnecessary deadlines. HR2318 ensures that the federal government is a "good neighbor" when operating a superfund cleanup site. HR2226 would clarify that EPA must consult with the state when selecting a remedial action.

      Source: H.R.3870 14-H3870 on Jan 14, 2014

      Voted NO on requiring limited GMO labeling.

      Pallone voted NAY DARK Act

      A BILL to require the Secretary of Agriculture to establish a national disclosure standard for bioengineered foods.

      Cato Institute recommendation on voting YES: President Obama quietly signed legislation requiring special labeling for commercial foods containing genetically modified organisms (GMOs)--plants and animals with desirable genetic traits that were directly implanted in a laboratory. Most of the foods that humans & animals have consumed for millennia have been genetically modified, by cross-fertilization. Yet the new law targets only the highly precise gene manipulations done in laboratories. Anti-GMO activists oppose the new law because it preempts more rigorous regulation. And that's exactly the goal of this bill, to the frustration of the anti-GMO crowd.

      JustLabelit.org recommendation on voting NO (because not restrictive enough): Senators Roberts (R-KS) and Stabenow (D-MI) introduced a compromise bill that would create a mandatory, national labeling standard for GMO foods. This bill falls short of what consumers expect--a simple at-a-glance disclosure on the package. As written, this compromise might not even apply to ingredients derived from GMO soybeans and GMO sugar beets. We in the consumer rights community have dubbed this the "Deny Americans the Right-to-Know" Act (DARK Act). We need to continue pressing for mandatory GMO labeling on the package.

      Heritage Foundation recommendation on voting NO (because too restrictive): The House should allow [states, at their choice,] to impose [a more] restrictive labeling mandate, but prohibit the state from regulating out-of-state food manufacturers engaged in interstate commerce. Instituting a new, sweeping, federal mandate that isn't based on proven science shouldn't even be an option.

      Legislative outcome: Passed by the Senate on July 7th, passed by the House on July 14th; signed by the President on July 29th

      Source: Congressional vote 16-S0764 on Jun 23, 2016

      Keep restrictive rules for predator control in Alaska.

      Pallone voted NAY Disapprove Subsistence Hunting Rule on ANWR

      Library of Congress Summary: This joint resolution nullifies the rule finalized by the Department of the Interior on Aug. 5, 2016, relating to non-subsistence takings of wildlife and public participation and closure procedures on National Wildlife Refuges in Alaska.

      Case for voting YES by House Republican Policy Committee: The Fish and Wildlife Service rule--which lays claim to more than 20% of Alaska--violates ANILCA (Alaska National Interest Land Conservation Act) and the Alaska Statehood Compact. Not only does [the existing 2016 rule] undermine Alaska's ability to manage fish and wildlife upon refuge lands, it fundamentally destroys a cooperative relationship between Alaska and the federal government.

      Case for voting NO by the Sierra Club (April 6, 2017):

      • President Trump signed H.J. Res. 69, overturning the rule that banned "predator control" on federal wildlife refuges in Alaska unless "based on sound science in response to a conservation concern."
      • Any rule mentioning "sound science" is in trouble under a Trump administration.
      • So what kinds of practices will the Trump administration now allow on our federal wildlife refuges? Activities that include shooting or trapping wolves while in their dens with pups, or hunting for grizzly bears from airplanes.
      • It's all about ensuring a maximum yield of prey species like elk, moose, and caribou for the real apex predator: humans. So if having more elk requires killing wolf pups in their dens, then so be it.
      • The Obama administration's rule (which Trump revoked) never tried to stop all hunting. Subsistence hunting was still allowed. What's changed is that the predators on federal wildlife refuges are now under the control of the state of Alaska. And that makes them prey.
      Legislative outcome: Passed Senate, 52-47-1, March 21; passed House, 225-193-12, Feb. 16; signed by Pres. Trump April 3.
      Source: Congressional vote 18-HJR69 on Feb 16, 2017

      Strengthen prohibitions against animal fighting.

      Pallone co-sponsored strengthening prohibitions against animal fighting

      Sen. CANTWELL. I reintroduce today the Animal Fighting Prohibition Enforcement Act of 2007. This legislation has won the unanimous approval of the Senate several times, but unfortunately has not yet reached the finish line.

      There is no doubt, animal fighting is terribly cruel. Dogs and roosters are drugged to make them hyper-aggressive and forced to keep fighting even after suffering severe injuries such as punctured eyes and pierced lungs. It's all done for "entertainment" and illegal gambling. Some dogfighters steal pets to use as bait for training their dogs, while others allow trained fighting dogs to roam neighborhoods and endanger the public.

      The Animal Fighting Prohibition Enforcement Act will strengthen current law by making the interstate transport of animals for the purpose of fighting a felony and increase the punishment to three years of jail time. This is necessary because the current misdemeanor penalty has proven ineffective--considered a "cost of doing business" by those in the animal fighting industry which continues unabated nationwide.

      These enterprises depend on interstate commerce, as evidenced by the animal fighting magazines that advertise and promote them. Our bill also makes it a felony to move cockfighting implements in interstate or foreign commerce. These are razor-sharp knives known as "slashers" and ice pick-like gaffs designed exclusively for cockfights and attached to the birds' legs for fighting.

      This is long overdue legislation. It's time to get this felony animal fighting language enacted. It's time for Congress to strengthen the federal law so that it can provide as a meaningful deterrent against animal fighting. Our legislation does not expand the federal government's reach into a new area, but simply aims to make current law more effective. It is explicitly limited to interstate and foreign commerce, so it protects states' rights in the two states where cockfighting is still allowed.

      Source: Animal Fighting Prohibition Enforcement Act (S.261/H.R.137) 2007-S261 on Jan 4, 2007

      2021-22 Governor, House and Senate candidates on Environment: Frank Pallone on other issues:
      NJ Gubernatorial:
      Barbara Buono
      Chris Christie
      Cory Booker
      Doug Steinhardt
      Hirsh Singh
      Jack Ciattarelli
      Joe Rullo
      John Wisniewski
      Kim Guadagno
      Phil Murphy
      Seth Kaper-Dale
      NJ Senatorial:
      Bob Hugin
      Cory Booker
      Hirsh Singh
      Jeff Chiesa
      Murray Sabrin
      Rich Pezzullo
      Rik Mehta
      Robert Menendez
      Stuart Meissner
      Republican Freshman class of 2021:
      AL-1: Jerry Carl(R)
      AL-2: Barry Moore(R)
      CA-8: Jay Obernolte(R)
      CA-50: Darrell Issa(R)
      CO-3: Lauren Boebert(R)
      FL-3: Kat Cammack(R)
      FL-15: Scott Franklin(R)
      FL-19: Byron Donalds(R)
      GA-9: Andrew Clyde(R)
      GA-14: Marjorie Taylor Greene(R)
      IA-2: Mariannette Miller-Meeks(R)
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      Incoming Democratic Freshman class of 2021:
      CA-53: Sara Jacobs(D)
      GA-5: Nikema Williams(D)
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      HI-2: Kai Kahele(D)
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      NC-2: Deborah Ross(D)
      NC-6: Kathy Manning(D)
      NY-15: Ritchie Torres(D)
      NY-16: Jamaal Bowman(D)
      NY-17: Mondaire Jones(D)
      WA-10: Marilyn Strickland(D)

      Republican takeovers as of 2021:
      CA-21: David Valadao(R) defeated T.J. Cox(D)
      CA-39: Young Kim(R) defeated Gil Cisneros(D)
      CA-48: Michelle Steel(R) defeated Harley Rouda(D)
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      Special Elections 2021-2022:
      CA-22: replacing Devin Nunes (R, SPEL summer 2022)
      FL-20: replacing Alcee Hastings (D, SPEL Jan. 2022)
      LA-2: Troy Carter (R, April 2021)
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      NM-1: Melanie Stansbury (D, June 2021)
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      Page last updated: Jan 26, 2022