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Congresswoman Ann McLane Kuster

Representing the 2nd District of New Hampshire

Bringing Together Employers and Job Seekers

Mar 27, 2015
Catching up with Annie

I hope you are all having a fantastic week. Let’s hope this warmer weather is here to stay! 

I’m writing to give you all a quick update on everything I’ve been doing on behalf of the people of New Hampshire’s Second District. Last week, I helped introduce legislation to get rising student loan debt under control, joined in leading a Veterans’ Affairs hearing to make sure our veterans get the services they need, and helped reintroduce the Paycheck Fairness Act to ensure equal pay for men and women. I also hosted a Seasonal Jobs and Opportunities Fair in Littleton to connect job seekers with employers in the North Country.

Hosting a Seasonal Jobs and Opportunities Fair in Littleton

Helping create more jobs and opportunity for Granite State workers is one of my top priorities in Congress, and I was glad to host a jobs fair in Littleton to connect local residents with employment opportunities throughout the Granite State. The event featured employers from the hospitality, tourism, and recreation industries, among others, and job seekers from across the region attended the fair.

This was the fifth jobs fair I’ve held since taking office. Getting a chance to introduce local workers to employers looking to hire is one of the most rewarding parts of my job. I’m always so grateful for the opportunity to meet with local job seekers and employers during these fairs, so I can hear directly from them about what more we can be doing in Washington to support their needs. I thank all of Friday’s participants for attending, and I am looking forward to our next jobs fair next week in Plymouth!

Working to Reduce Student Debt

Throughout the district, one of the top issues facing students and their families is the cost of college and student loan debt. In New Hampshire, students have the second highest average student loan debt in the country at nearly $33,000 per student. I was proud to help introduce the Bank on Students Emergency Loan Refinancing Act last week, which would help students across the country refinance their loans at a lower rate.

Everyone knows the path to a successful career is a good education, but too many students can’t access higher education opportunities because of skyrocketing costs. It’s time to change that. This common sense bill will allow students to refinance their loans at a lower rate, and help ease the burden on students and their families. I urge my colleagues in Congress to join me in fighting for this legislation, and in fighting for the common goal of increased access to education for all.

Advocating for Granite State Veterans

Last week I helped lead a Veterans’ Affairs Oversight and Investigations (O&I) Subcommittee hearing, where the Committee members heard testimony on a number of new VA reform bills. The legislation reviewed during the hearing addresses a number of issues at the VA, including whistleblower protections, cyber security measures, and the cost of a new facility in Aurora, Colorado. As Ranking Member of the Subcommittee, I questioned witnesses at the VA about the efficacy of the legislation and raised questions about the VA’s ability to build hospitals in a cost-effective and results-oriented manner.

We must ensure that our veterans can easily access the care they need, and I appreciated the chance to review new legislation that could help improve services at the VA. I believe the VA must approach new projects in the most efficient manner possible, and should work to maximize output while also preventing the waste of taxpayer dollars. The cost overruns being projected at the Aurora VA are truly egregious, and I encourage the VA to continue to look into additional ways to build the Aurora hospital in as quick and cost-effective a manner as possible, while protecting access to care. 

Fighting for Equal Pay

I was glad to help reintroduce the Paycheck Fairness Act to help eliminate pay disparities based on gender. On average, women in New Hampshire continue to make only 78 cents to every dollar their male counterparts make. That’s simply unacceptable, and I was proud to reintroduce this legislation to help close the gap and level the playing field for female workers and the families who rely on them. No woman should ever make less money than a man doing the same job. We must come together to pass this legislation now, so we can move one step closer towards pay equity for every American, regardless of his or her gender.

Thank you for everything you do to make the Granite State such a wonderful place to live.