By Staff Reports
(Victor Valley) –Rep. Paul Cook (R- Apple Valley) applauded yesterday’s passage of his bill, HR 1992, the American Soda Ash Competitiveness Act out of the House Committee on Natural Resources. The bill passed with bipartisan support.
The American Soda Ash Competitiveness Act would return the royalty paid to the federal government to a two percent rate for five years, giving the mining industry time to continue growing into foreign markets, and protecting hundreds of good-paying jobs. Soda ash, or Sodium Carbonate, is used to manufacture glass and produce chemicals, detergents, paper, and other products. Soda ash also has a critical national security role as a key component in cockpit windshields manufactured by the aerospace industry.
Cook said, “I’m glad to see my bill was passed out of committee with strong support. This is an important bill that will protect a vital industry, grow jobs, and do this with little impact to the federal budget. This $1.8 billion industry within the U.S., employs over 3,000 workers directly, 700 of which are in my district. Additionally, it provides around 20,000 indirect jobs, particularly at ports in California. I appreciate my colleagues who have supported this bill and hope to see this enacted into law soon.”
A member of the House Natural Resources, Armed Services, and Foreign Affairs Committees, Cook served as an infantry officer and retired after 26 years as a Colonel in the U.S. Marine Corps. During his time in combat, he was awarded the Bronze Star and two Purple Hearts.