|Dollar by Dollar|
In most cases, federal agencies do a good job of ensuring that people receive the money that they are owed. But sometimes, people find that they have fallen through the cracks or simply haven’t received fair treatment from their government. Many come to me for help, thousands this year.
I help people from many backgrounds – from people who are living below the poverty line to those of comfortable means, including many seniors, veterans, soldiers, and new citizens.
They have a wide range of problems, from Social Security or veterans’ benefits that have been wrongly denied, to IRS penalties that have been inaccurately assessed, and more.
I do my best to help. Not every result is a positive one, but I am pleased to report that, as of this week, I have helped secure more than $1,000,000 for Central New Jersey residents this year.
Among the constituents I’ve helped:
In addition to assistance that produces direct financial benefits, I also work to help constituents who have encountered non-financial problems with federal agencies, such as delays in passport or visa applications, difficulty in recovering lost discharge papers or military medals, and much more.
If you have encountered problems in your dealings with any federal agency, please contact me by visiting http://holt.house.gov/contact or calling 1-87-RUSH-HOLT (1-877-874-4658). I will do my best to help you get answers.
Preparing for Hurricane Sandy
The National Weather Service is reporting that a confluence of weather systems, including Hurricane Sandy, is now approaching the mid-Atlantic coast. The forecast remains uncertain, but the system could bring very high winds, significant rain, and even snow to New Jersey. This has the potential to be a serious, even historic, storm, and the time to prepare is now.
The Red Cross has prepared a helpful checklist of steps that you can take before and after a hurricane to protect yourself, your family, and your belongings. In particular, please be sure that you have a three-day supply of water and non-perishable food on hand (including for any pets), as well as a flashlight, battery-powered radio, first aid kid, and any necessary medications.
Should you lose power, please report the outage to 1-800-436-PSEG (1-800-436-7734) if you are served by PSE&G or to 1-888-LIGHTSS (1-888-544-4877) if you are served by JCP&L.
Please continue to pay close attention to weather forecasts in the days ahead. Stay safe!
Stop Defending the Indefensible
Last week, the U.S. 2nd Circuit Court of Appeals ruled that the so-called Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA) is unconstitutional. I had joined 144 of my colleagues in the U.S. House of Representatives in a brief urging the court to reject DOMA, which prevents the federal government from recognizing lawfully performed same-sex marriages.
The 2nd Circuit Court’s decision is the latest in a string of victories in the legal battle against marriage discrimination. Indeed, DOMA appears to be on the verge of being overturned entirely: the Obama administration has determined the law to be unconstitutional, and federal courts have agreed in six consecutive decisions.
The only reason that DOMA is being defended in court at all is that Speaker Boehner and House Republicans have insisted upon supporting the wrong-headed law. So far, Speaker Boehner has spent more than $1.5 million taxpayer dollars on this losing legal battle.
It is time to stop spending taxpayer money defending DOMA. The law is indefensible.