Economy & Jobs
One of my top priorities is to create new jobs and opportunities for everyone living in California’s Fifteenth Congressional District. The federal government must have policies that support economic growth and focus on expanding the middle class through innovation and technology. That means we must change our federal tax code to reward companies that create jobs in this country and remove systemic incentives to ship jobs overseas.
We also must update and expand educational opportunities so that our children are prepared for the high-tech jobs of the future, and we must support research into new, clean energy sources as a way to support domestic industry and protect our environment.
We cannot let partisan and ideological differences stand in the way of our coming together for the common good. I will always support a good idea, whether it is proposed by a Democrat or by a Republican, if it means more jobs, higher incomes, and a better quality of life for Americans.
What I am Doing for You
I voted for H.R. 1319, the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021; President Biden signed it into law March 11, 2021. This law:
- Put Vaccines in Arms: The plan mounted a national vaccination program that included setting up community vaccination sites nationwide and addressing disparities facing communities of color. It also took other measures to combat the virus, including scaling up testing and tracing, addressing shortages of personal protective equipment and other critical supplies, investing in high-quality treatments and addressing health care disparities.
- Put Children Safely Back in School: The plan made a nearly $130 billion investment in school re-opening and making up for lost learning.
- Put Money in People’s Pockets: The plan finished the job on the President’s promise to provide $2,000 in direct assistance to households across America with checks of $1,400 per person, following the $600 down payment enacted in December. The plan also provided direct housing assistance, nutrition assistance for 40 million Americans, expanded access to safe and reliable child care and affordable health care, extended unemployment insurance so that more than 20 million American workers can pay their bills and supported 27 million children with an expanded Child Tax Credit and more than 17 million low-wage workers through an improved Earned Income Tax Credit.
- Put People Back In Jobs: The plan provided crucial support for the hardest-hit small businesses, especially those owned by entrepreneurs from racial and ethnic backgrounds that have experienced systemic discrimination, with Economic Injury Disaster Loan grants, expanded Paycheck Protection Program eligibility and more. The plan also provided crucial resources to protect the jobs of first responders, frontline public health workers, teachers, transit workers and other essential workers that all Americans depend on.
I'm an original cosponsor of and voted for, and the House passed, H.R.842, the Protecting the Right to Organize (PRO) Act of 2021. This bipartisan bill streamlines access to justice for workers who suffer retaliation for exercising their organizing rights; gives workers the power to override so-called “right-to-work” laws that prevent unions from collecting dues from the workers they represent; enhances workers’ right to support boycotts, strikes, or other acts of solidarity; authorizes a private right of action for violations of workers’ rights; authorizes meaningful penalties for companies and executives that violate workers’ rights; closes loopholes that corporations use to erode workers’ rights; prevents companies from denying workers’ access to justice; requires employers to be transparent with their workers; prevents employers from interfering in union elections; allows workers to hold union elections in a safe environment; and facilitates timely first contracts between companies and newly certified unions by requiring mediation and arbitration to settle disputes.
I cosponsored and voted for, and the House passed, H.R. 1065, the bipartisan Pregnant Workers Fairness Act. This bill would require employers to reasonably accommodate workers and job applicants who need accommodations due to pregnancy, childbirth and related medical conditions.
I'm an original cosponsor of H.R. 603, the Raise the Wage Act of 2021, to raise the minimum wage to $15 an hour by 2025. After 2025, the bill would automatically increase the minimum wage each year at the same rate that median wages increase. It also would gradually eliminate the lower, subminimum wages for disabled, youth, and tipped workers, which contribute to wage theft, and exacerbate the wage gaps that harm women and Black workers. (I previously cosponsored this bill in the 114th, 115th, and 116th Congresses.)
I'm an original cosponsor of H.R. 804, the FAMILY Act, to provide workers with up to 12 weeks of financial support during a family or medical leave from work. This would cover time taken following the birth or adoption of a child including time to recover from pregnancy and childbirth, as well as leave taken to care for a sick child, parent, spouse or domestic partner, recover from illness personally, or time taken for military caregiving and leave purposes.
I'm an original cosponsor of H.R. 308, the SAFE (Secure And Fair Elections for) Workers Act, a bipartisan bill that demands the National Labor Relations Board use the available technology of the 21st century to conduct union elections remotely, allowing workers to organize while ensuring the safest workplace possible during the pandemic.
I'm an original cosponsor of H.R. 3194, the Fairness for Farm Workers Act, to update the nation’s labor laws to ensure farm workers receive fair wages and compensation. The bill amends the Fair Labor Standards Act to end the overtime and minimum wage exemptions for farm workers.
I'm an original cosponsor of H.R. 2817, the Child Care for Working Families Act, comprehensive legislation to address the child care crisis and ensure that working families can find and afford high-quality child care. This bill would make child care affordable for working families, expand access to preschool programs for 3- and 4-year-olds, improve the quality of care for all children, and increase compensation and provide training for child care workers. Overall, the CCWFA would jumpstart our economy by creating roughly 700,000 new child care jobs, help 1.6 million parents—primarily mothers—go back to work, and lift one million families out of poverty.
I'm an original cosponsor of H.R. 869, the Research Investment to Spark the Economy (RISE) Act, a bipartisan bill to authorize nearly $25 billion in support to U.S. researchers who have been impacted by the pandemic. Although coronavirus-related research is a current federal government priority, most other research has been delayed due to closures of campuses and laboratories. The people who comprise the research workforce – graduate students, postdocs, principal investigators, and technical support staff – face financial and other hardships from the disruption of their research activities. The RISE Act will provide necessary relief to preserve the current scientific workforce and ensure that the United States is prepared to continue our global scientific leadership once this crisis ends.
I'm an original cosponsor of H.R. 1996, the Secure and Fair Enforcement (SAFE) Banking Act of 2021, a bipartisan bill to allow marijuana-related businesses in states with some form of legalized marijuana and strict regulatory structures to access the banking system. Forty-seven states, four U.S. territories, and the District of Columbia – representing 97.7 % of the U.S. population – have legalized some form of recreational or medical marijuana, including CBD. Yet current law restricts legitimate licensed marijuana businesses from accessing banking services and products, such as depository and checking accounts, resulting in businesses operating in all cash. This is a serious public safety risk for our communities, inviting theft, robberies, burglaries, or worse.
I cosponsored H.R. 2341, the Bring Jobs Home Act, to cut taxes for American companies that move jobs to the U.S. from another nation, and to close tax loopholes that reward companies shipping jobs overseas.
I cosponsored H.R. 928, the American Family Act of 2021, to permanently expand and improve the Child Tax Credit (CTC) and make it a dramatically more effective tool for reducing child poverty and supporting families with kids. The bill would provide $300 per-month, per-child for children under 6 years of age and $250 per-month, per-child for children between the ages of six and 17—increasing the credit for all children. This bill also, for the first time, makes the credit fully refundable and extends the CTC to the United States Territories. The American Rescue Plan includes one year of an expanded and improved CTC modeled after the American Family Act.
I cosponsored H.R. 2688, the Reclaiming American Rare Earths (RARE) Act, a bipartisan bill to permanently allow a tax deduction for the mining, reclaiming, or recycling of critical minerals and metals from the United States, and to support the development of domestic supply chains for rare earth elements and other critical materials essential to U.S. technology, manufacturing, energy, healthcare and advanced medical devices, broadband infrastructure, transportation, and national defense.
I cosponsored H.R. 1346, the Hospitality and Commerce Job Recovery Act of 2021, a bipartisan bill to bring back the millions of travel jobs lost to the pandemic by providing a temporary business tax credit to revitalize business meetings, conferences, and other structured events; a temporarily restored entertainment business expense deduction to help entertainment venues and performing arts centers recover; an individual tax credit to stimulate non-business travel; and tax relief for restaurants and food and beverage companies to help restore food service jobs and strengthen the entire American food supply chain.
I cosponsored H.R. 890, the Gym Mitigation and Survival (GYMS) Act, a bipartisan bill to provide much-needed assistance to gyms, fitness studios, and fitness facilities that have struggled as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. The GYMS Act would provide $30 billion to the Small Business Administration to disburse grants to eligible fitness business. Facilities would be required to certify economic need and recipients can use funds for expenses such as payroll, rent and mortgage obligations, utility payments, worker protection expenditures, and more.
In the 116th Congress:
I introduced H.R. 4481, the Securing Energy Critical Elements and American Jobs Act of 2019, to help the United States develop the technical expertise and production capabilities to assure a long-term, secure and sustainable supply of energy critical elements (ECEs). If we want to keep leading the world in technological advancement and create more American jobs, we must secure these energy critical elements and their production. My bill’s concept was incorporated into H.R. 4447, the Clean Economy and Jobs and Innovation Act, a bigger package of clean energy and energy innovation initiatives put together by the committees on Energy and Commerce; Science, Space, and Technology; and Natural Resources. The House passed H.R. 4447 in September 2020.
With bipartisan support, I cosponsored and helped pass H.R. 397, the Rehabilitation for Multiemployer Pensions Act of 2019. This bill establishes a new agency (the Pension Rehabilitation Administration) within the Treasury Department to provide 30-year loans to multiemployer defined benefit pension plans that are in critical or declining financial condition so that they may meet their pension obligations to current retirees. Only interest would be required to be paid back until year 30; loans may be forgiven if a plan is not able to pay them back.
As part of a bipartisan effort to support job seekers, I introduced H.R. 5561, the Widening Internet Readiness for Employment Development (WIRED) Act. This bipartisan bill would direct the Department of Labor to create guidelines for One-Stop Career Center websites to dramatically improve their design and offer virtual job-seeking services. (I previously introduced this bill as H.R. 3088 in the 115th Congress; H.R. 3280 in the 114th Congress; and H.R. 4823 in the 113th Congress.)
My first bill in my first term in Congress was the Main Street Revival Act to help grow our economy and create jobs. Each year, I have worked on this bipartisan bill which would let small businesses located in struggling areas elect to defer paying payroll taxes for their first year, helping them get off of the ground.
More on Economy & Jobs
WASHINGTON, DC – Following the 23-hour markup in the House Judiciary Committee, U.S. Representatives Zoe Lofgren (D-CA-19), Darrell Issa (R-CA-50), Eric Swalwell (D-CA-15), Tom McClintock (R-CA-04), and Lou Correa (D-CA-46) issued the below statement:
WASHINGTON, D.C. — Today, Congressman Steven Horsford (D-NV-04) and Congressman Eric Swalwell (D-CA-15) led over 50 members of the House and Senate in a letter to Congressional leadership emphasizing the importance of including meaningful paid leave in the next recovery and jobs plan.
The letter, which was released to coincide with Father’s Day, focused on the need to ensure that universal paid leave is available to parents and caregivers of all genders.
CASTRO VALLEY, CA— Today, Rep. Eric Swalwell (CA-15) announced that the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee has included $20 million he requested for the Valley Link project, connecting Bay Area Rapid Transit (BART) to the Altamont Corridor Express commuter train, in its Fiscal Year 2021 transportation spending bill.