August 2016 Commerce Club

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Congressman Brian Babin, the featured speaker of the August 11 Commerce Club Luncheon at Brady’s Landing, focused his remarks on legislative measures encouraging progress and security for industry and infrastructure in Texas’ District 36.

“The 36th District is big, representing southeast Harris county, as well as several others, and their ports: the Port of Houston, Cedar Port (in Baytown), the Port of Orange, and the Port of Beaumont … I am honored to be the only Houston-area congressman serving on the Transportation Committee and also on Space,” said Babin.

Babin described his work with the Transportation Committee, mentioning the unanimously house-approved amendments that ensure loggers in the East Texas timber industry can continue to haul loads at the same weight as in previous years on I-69 and the designation of the Central Texas corridor as the first segment of Interstate 14. The I-14 highway is already nicknamed, “Forts to Ports”, and the amendment authorizes highway improvements that will facilitate the movement of military equipment from military bases to ports.

Babin also authored an amendment that was part of the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) Reauthorization Act of 2016 to set strict new guidelines for “no drone zones” over critical infrastructure, such as chemical facilities. “Drones can be used or abused,” Babin emphasized.

In addition to the amendment measures, Babin elaborated on his work for harbor maintenance, particularly in supporting efforts to see the appropriate dollars returned to ports from the Harbor Maintenance Trust Fund. He recently “teamed up” with Gene Green to work to “give ports the maximum flexibility to dredge.” Babin touched on a variety of topics relating to the health and progress of Texas ports, including prioritizing measures for infrastructure safety during hurricanes, his vote for the Trade Promotion Authority (TPA) as beneficial for Texas District 36, and his staunch support for the Jones Act.
“Let me be clear,” stated Babin firmly. “I oppose any efforts to weaken or appeal the Jones Act … It is very important that America build and crew its own ships and navigate its own waterways … It’s a national security issue.”

Babin reserved time for a question and answer session where he answered questions concerning his stand on the Jones Act in more detail and highway funding. The Commerce Club concluded with Congressman Babin’s thanks to attendees.

Editor’s Note: John Schlosser, President of Kinder Morgan Terminals, will be the guest speaker for the next Commerce Club at Brady’s Landing on September 8, 2016. Individual seats and table sponsorships are available. Reserve your seat at www.txgulf.org/events/commerce-club or by calling (713) 678-4300.

  • Date September 13, 2016
  • Tags September 2016