Press Releases

06.02.14

Sen. Whitehouse Hails EPA Rules for Carbon Pollution

Washington, DC - Today the Obama Administration proposed new state-specific carbon pollution standards for power plants, which are the largest source of carbon pollution in America. U.S. Senator Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI), chairman of the Senate Environment and Public Works (EPW) Subcommittee on Clean Air and Nuclear Safety, is hailing the proposed rules as an important step forward in our nation's effort to combat climate change and protect public health. "It's long past time for there to be s… Continue Reading


05.29.14

RI Set to Receive $1.9 Million in Groundfish Disaster Relief Funds

PROVIDENCE, RI - Rhode Island's Congressional delegation today joined with Governor Lincoln D. Chafee and Janet Coit, the Director of the Rhode Island Department of Environmental Management (RIDEM), in announcing a compromise agreement reached by the state fishery directors from Rhode Island, Connecticut, Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, and New York and officials from the National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) for a framework for the distribution of a portion of $32.8 million in federal f… Continue Reading


05.28.14

RI Receives $2.7 Million to Clean Up Brownfields

PROVIDENCE, RI - In an effort to protect public health and redevelop former industrial sites, U.S. Senators Jack Reed and Sheldon Whitehouse and U.S. Representatives Jim Langevin and David Cicilline today announced over $2.7 million to help clean up brownfields in communities across the state. A brownfield site is property where expansion or redevelopment is complicated by the presence or potential presence of a hazardous substance, pollutant, or contaminant. Organizations in Pawtucket, Providen… Continue Reading


05.23.14

Whitehouse Introduces Bill to Protect Servicemembers from Foreclosure

Washington, DC - As the nation prepares to honor veterans and servicemembers during this Memorial Day weekend, U.S. Senator Sheldon Whitehouse has introduced legislation to help keep military families in their homes by protecting them against foreclosure following active duty. The Foreclosure Relief and Extension for Servicemembers Act of 2014 (S. 2404) would ensure that troops who serve active duty are protected against losing their home for one year following the completion of their service i… Continue Reading


05.22.14

Senate Passes Major Water Projects Bill

Washington, DC - The U.S. Senate today passed legislation to reauthorize the Water Resources Reform and Development Act (WRRDA), which authorizes important civil works and flood control projects and policies for the Army Corps of Engineers, by a vote of 91-7. U.S. Senator Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI) helped shepherd the bill through the Senate last year as a member of the Environment and Public Works (EPW) Committee, and then served on the House-Senate conference committee that negotiated the fina… Continue Reading


05.19.14

Whitehouse Applauds DOJ Crackdown on Cyberspying

Providence, RI - Today the U.S. Department of Justice announced the indictment of five members of the Chinese military for computer hacking, economic espionage, and other acts targeting six American companies and organizations. U.S. Senator Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI), who last week chaired a Judiciary Subcommittee hearing on economic espionage and has long urged the Justice Department to bring prosecutions against state-sponsored hackers who steal American trade secrets, is applauding the indict… Continue Reading


05.16.14

Reed, Whitehouse, and Cicilline Announce Funding for Firefighters in Lincoln

Providence, RI - Senators Jack Reed and Sheldon Whitehouse and Congressman David Cicilline today announced that the Lime Rock Fire District in Lincoln has been awarded a grant from the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) to upgrade their fire safety and protection equipment. The funding was authorized as part of FEMA's Assistance to Firefighters Grant Program, which is designed to aid fire departments and emergency medical service organizations meet their equipment, training, and other n… Continue Reading


05.15.14

Senate Committee Passes Major Bill to Fund Road & Bridge Projects

Washington, DC - The Senate Environment and Public Works (EPW) Committee today passed a transportation funding bill that incorporates a Projects of National and Regional Significance Program (PNRS) providing for over $2 billion for investments in regionally critical infrastructure. U.S. Senator Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI), a member of the EPW Committee, requested that the program be included, citing its potential to create jobs and grow the economy in Rhode Island. Under the bill that advanced… Continue Reading


05.15.14

Sen. Whitehouse Challenges Rubio Comments on Climate Change

Washington, DC - On the heels of a joint speech on Tuesday with Senator Bill Nelson (D-FL) about the effects of climate change in Florida, U.S. Senator Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI) is directly responding to Senator Marco Rubio's (R-FL) recent comments denying the reality of climate change. In an interview on Sunday and again during a speaking event Tuesday, Rubio said he did not believe human activity was causing climate change. He also went on to say that we should not do anything to address cli… Continue Reading


05.15.14

Senate and House Agree to Create New Program for Ocean and Coastal Ecosystems

Washington, DC - Today a House-Senate conference committee announced a final bipartisan compromise on legislation to reauthorize the Water Resources Reform and Development Act (WRRDA). The compromise bill includes a provision crafted by U.S. Senator Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI) authorizing a new program within the Army Corps of Engineers to carry out projects that would enhance ocean and coastal ecosystem resiliency. "In Rhode Island and throughout the country, the strength of our economy is tied… Continue Reading


05.13.14

Sen. Whitehouse Bill Protects Public Health by Ending Secrecy in Certain Civil Settlements

Washington, DC - U.S. Senator Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI) has introduced legislation to protect the health and safety of American citizens by limiting the ability of big corporations to demand that plaintiffs remain silent about their experiences as a condition of settling their disputes. Currently, for example, natural gas companies facing lawsuits from citizens who claim their water has been contaminated by the extraction process can require citizens to keep details of their cases secret in exc… Continue Reading


05.13.14

Road & Bridge Bill Includes Major Infrastructure Funding Championed by Sen. Whitehouse

Washington, DC - Last night, with federal transportation funding slated to expire in September, the leading Democrats and Republicans on the Senate Environment and Public Works (EPW) Committee introduced bipartisan legislation to reauthorize funding for road and bridge projects for the next six years. One of the major provisions included in the bill was requested by U.S. Senator Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI), and would fund a Projects of National and Regional Significance (PNRS) program. The White… Continue Reading


05.06.14

Sen. Whitehouse: National Climate Assessment May Force Deniers to Confront Reality

Washington, DC - Today, the U.S. Global Change Research Program released its third National Climate Assessment (NCA), an extensive report mandated by Congress to be completed every four years. The third NCA, developed over four years by 13 federal agencies and hundreds of scientific authors, explains how climate change is already affecting every region of the country, our ocean, and our economy. The NCA also provides detailed projections of future changes. U.S. Senator Sheldon Whitehouse (D-R… Continue Reading


04.30.14

Whitehouse Statement on Minimum Wage Vote

Washington, DC - Today Senate Republicans blocked the Minimum Wage Fairness Act, a bill to raise the federal minimum wage from $7.25 to $10.10 per hour over several years. U.S. Senator Sheldon Whitehouse, a cosponsor of the bill and member of the Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions Committee, which has jurisdiction over federal minimum wage legislation, released the following statement on today's vote: "Too many Rhode Island families are struggling to pay their bills and put food on th… Continue Reading


04.29.14

Sen. Whitehouse Statement on Cross-State Air Pollution Ruling

Washington, DC - U.S. Senator Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI) released the statement below today regarding the Supreme Court's decision to uphold the Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA) Cross-State Air Pollution Rule (CSAPR): "For too long, virtually uncontrolled coal-fired power plants have used tall smoke stacks to export dirty air to downwind states like Rhode Island - polluting our skies and endangering our health. Rhode Island's Department of Environmental Management could do nothing about … Continue Reading


04.28.14

Sen. Whitehouse Applauds $18B Contract for Electric Boat

Washington, DC - Today, the U.S. Department of the Navy announced an $18 billion contract for the construction of 10 Virginia-class submarines by General Dynamics Electric Boat - largest number of boats ordered to date in a single contract block. U.S. Senator Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI) released the statement below regarding this announcement: "Electric Boat's facility at Quonset has long been a major source of jobs for our state, and this contract ensures that it will continue to be so for year… Continue Reading


04.16.14

Waxman and Whitehouse Submit Formal Comments on Keystone Pipeline

Washington, DC - As Secretary of State John Kerry continues to consider the fate of the proposed Keystone XL tar sands pipeline, Rep. Henry A. Waxman (D-CA) and Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI) wrote to Secretary Kerry explaining why the project is not in our national interest and submitting formal comments critiquing several key elements of the State Department's Final Supplemental Environmental Impact Statement (FSEIS). The letter and comments explain how the pipeline will contribute to dangero… Continue Reading


04.16.14

RI to Receive $787,100 in NEA Grants

PROVIDENCE, RI -- In an effort to promote community arts programs and arts education throughout Rhode Island, the Rhode Island Congressional delegation today announced the Rhode Island State Council on the Arts (RISCA), Community Musicworks (CMW), and WaterFire Providence will share $787,100 in federal grants from the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA). These federal matching grants will help support both new and established art projects, including workshops, performances, exhibitions, and a… Continue Reading


04.15.14

Sen. Whitehouse Statement on Anniversary of Boston Bombing

Providence, RI - U.S. Senator Sheldon Whitehouse released the statement below today in recognition of the one-year anniversary of the Boston bombing: "New Englanders will never forget the tragic events of one year ago - the senseless violence that shattered an otherwise beautiful day, but also the resilience and compassion demonstrated in the aftermath by first responders and citizens alike. On that day, and the days that followed, Boston showed the world what Americans are made of. And today w… Continue Reading


04.14.14

Reed, Whitehouse Call for Bipartisan Action, Multi-Year Fix to Address Transportation Infrastructure Needs

PROVIDENCE, RI -- U.S. Senators Jack Reed (D-RI) and Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI) today met with Rhode Island Department of Transportation Director Michael P. Lewis to discuss the looming Highway Trust Fund crisis. Reed and Whitehouse say urgent bipartisan action is needed to prevent federal transportation funds from running out. The Senators are calling for swift reauthorization of the transportation bill, known as the Moving Ahead for Progress in the 21st Century (MAP-21) Act. The current law … Continue Reading

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