According to Representative Paul Cook, 

“By streamlining the permitting process, we’re putting more people to work 

and getting important infrastructure projects completed more quickly.”    

COOK Votes to Ease Regulations

& CREATE JOBS 


 

WASHINGTON D.C. ____  Today September 25th, Representative Paul Cook (R- Apple Valley) voted for H.R. 348, the Responsibly and Professionally Invigorating Development Act of 2015 or RAPID Act. The Bill passed 233-170. 

This Bill addresses the problem of extensive requirements and growing delays in federal permitting and approvals for construction projects stemming from the involvement of multiple agencies, excessive requirements, and unnecessary lawsuits. It will reform and expedite the approval and completion of critical energy and infrastructure projects.

The United States ranks 41st world-wide in time and cost to obtain a government green light for construction. A 2011 study found 351 projects stuck in permitting that could generate $1.1 trillion and 1.9 million jobs a year during construction. Once built, operations stemming from these projects could produce another estimated $145 billion and involve 791,000 jobs annually. 

The Bill tackles the problem in three ways:   

First, it sets hard deadlines for review: an 18-month maximum deadline for an Environmental Assessment and a 36-month maximum deadline for an Environmental Impact Statement.

Second, it cracks down on prolonged lawsuits by establishing a 180-day statute of limitations for lawsuits challenging permitting decisions and limits claims to those presented during the permit’s public notice-and-comment process.

Lastly, it consolidates who manages the process by empowering lead agencies to manage environmental reviews efficiently from start to finish, avoiding waste and duplication of effort among bureaucratic agencies.

Rep. Cook said, “The bill is about jobs, jobs, jobs. Government regulations are killing the economy. The bureaucratic red tape means fewer jobs for Americans. By streamlining the permitting process, we’re putting more people to work and getting important infrastructure projects completed more quickly.”

Representative  Paul Cook is a member of the House Natural Resources, Armed Services, and Foreign Affairs Committees, He 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.