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118th Congress Federal Priorities

A thriving business environment that fosters economic development is critical to making Houston greater. In order to advance the Houston region, the Greater Houston Partnership supports policies that create a business environment attractive to leading global companies and skilled talent. During the 118th Congress, the Partnership will focus on this impact agenda addressing the most pressing issues facing the business community and the Houston region. We invite you to join us in advancing these solutions to strengthen the region’s long-term growth and provide opportunity for all. Together, we make Houston greater.

Executive Priorities

The Partnership has set priorities on energy and the coastal barrier.

Additional focus areas include transportation, economic development, flood mitigation, international trade and more.

Energy & Energy Transition

As the Energy Capital of the World, the Partnership and its member companies pursue federal policies investing in Houston’s position in leading the global energy transition and creating high-quality, high-growth job. Through leveraging members’ expertise, the Partnership works with lawmakers to advance the region’s energy competitiveness and secure Houston’s position as a leader in the global energy transition.

The Partnership launched the Houston Energy Transition Initiative (HETI) and has been working with leaders and stakeholders at the local, state, and federal level to align policies and programs for a modern world. Through this initiative, the Partnership embraces the dual challenge of the energy transition by meeting growing global demand for energy while lowering emissions. There is tremendous business opportunity in addressing the dual challenge through developing and scaling technologies, creating and servicing markets for the global energy mix, and investing in energy priorities.

The Partnership is committed to bringing this message to Congress and working with lawmakers to utilize Houston’s leadership and advance our energy competitiveness.
 

Wind Turbines in Texas

Coastal Barrier

The 2022 Water Resources and Development Act (WRDA) authorizes opportunities to advance the region’s infrastructure through navigation, flood damage reduction, and ecosystem restoration projects. The Partnership is grateful for authorization and supports funding for the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (Corps) Coastal Texas Program, which includes the development of a barrier flood gate and levee system designed to protect national security assets, economic vitality, and human life. 

The Partnership supports the efforts between the region's congressional delegation, the Corps, and the non-federal sponsors – the Texas General Land Office and the Gulf Coast Protection District (GCPD) – to continue moving this project to construction. We request funding for the Coastal Texas Program. We request continuing contract authority so that the Corps can draw down a predictable amount of federal funds, particularly for the mission-critical gate system. We urge consideration of waiving the GCPD’s interest accrual on Sabine to Galveston projects until November 1, 2025. A pause on interest accrual will help the GCPD deliver the project with the strongest benefits to the region and taxpayers. 

Preventative infrastructure projects, like the Coastal Texas Program, can help mitigate the devastation from a catastrophic storm surge and save tens of billions of dollars in disaster recovery funding by protecting vulnerable communities. The coastal barrier is also an investment in our national economic security. The Houston region is home to one of the largest concentrations of refining and petrochemical complexes in the world, and a storm’s direct hit to the unprotected ship channel would have devastating economic consequences across our nation.

houston bayou
Priority Issues
Meet the Greater Houston Region's Federal Delegation

Convening to Make an Impact

The Partnership's impact work happens through Committees, which convene business and community leaders to fuel the growth and vitality of the Houston region. 

Public Policy Updates

Related News

Public Policy

Houston Region Secures $10 Million for Climate-Resilient Transportation Infrastructure Projects

4/16/24
The U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) awarded Harris County and Houston-Galveston Area Council (H-GAC) more than $10 million to support transportation infrastructure projects that aim to enhance resiliency against climate change.   The announcement is part of the Biden-Harris Administration's broader initiative, the Promoting Resilient Operations for Transformative, Efficient and Cost-saving Transportation (PROTECT) program, established under the Infrastructure Law and Inflation Reduction Act. PROTECT will fund nearly $830 million in grants for 80 projects nationwide.   According to DOT, Harris County will receive more than $9.6 million to develop a master plan evaluating drainage infrastructure capacity of local roadways within the county’s unincorporated areas that are experiencing rapid growth and frequent flooding. Meanwhile, H-GAC is set to receive $1.1 million to create a Resilience Improvement Plan for transportation systems across the eight-county region that are prone to severe weather, natural disasters and flooding.   “Every community in America knows the impacts of climate change and extreme weather, including increasingly frequent heavy rain and flooding events across the country and sea-level rise that is inundating infrastructure in coastal states,” said Shailen Bhatt of the Federal Highway Administration in a statement. “This investment from the Biden-Harris Administration will ensure our infrastructure is built to withstand more frequent and unpredictable extreme weather, which is vitally important for people and businesses that rely on roads and bridges being open to keep our economy moving.”   As a city that has experienced six federally declared flooding disasters since 2015, these projects are critical to Houston’s prosperity. To further advance public policies like PROTECT, the Greater Houston Partnership recently visited Washington, D.C., to advocate for the use of funds from the new Community Development Block Grant Mitigation (CDBG-MIT) program, which would provide billions of dollars for flood mitigation projects in the Houston region.  Additionally, alongside federal, state and local elected officials, the Partnership has actively been working to propel the coastal barrier project, also known as Ike Dike, forward. This crucial infrastructure project, which is on the verge of being authorized by Congress, will help mitigate crippling flooding from catastrophic storm surges and save tens of billions of dollars in disaster recovery funding by protecting vulnerable communities. The barrier will also safeguard the Houston Ship Channel, which serves as an economic engine helping to power the nation.   Learn more about the Partnership’s Public Policy Efforts.  
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Public Policy

2023 Ballot Initiatives - Week 2

10/5/23
In the weeks before early voting, the Greater Houston Partnership will share essential information on the 2023 ballot initiatives that will impact our region. This week, we focus on state Propositions 8 and 10, which would allow Texas to expand its broadband infrastructure and become more competitive in attracting the medical and biomedical manufacturing industries. We will also go deeper into Harris County’s bond proposal, which would upgrade and enhance the hospital district’s facilities.  Prop 8: Bridging Texas' digital divide Equitable access to reliable, high-speed broadband provides economic opportunities to all Texans, and investment in broadband expansion enables local communities to thrive. However, U.S. Census Bureau data indicate almost 2.8 million Texas households and 7 million people lack broadband access. To close this digital divide, Proposition 8 creates the constitutionally dedicated Broadband Infrastructure Fund (BIF). The BIF will assist in financing connectivity projects and invest $1.5 billion toward expanding broadband infrastructure around the state, enabling Texas to successfully draw down funds from the federal Broadband Equity, Access, & Deployment (BEAD) Program. If approved by the voters, Proposition 8 will ensure our communities remain connected, competitive, and adaptable in the face of whatever challenges and opportunities tomorrow may bring. Prop 10: Boosting Texas' medical manufacturing competitiveness As Texas strives to become a hub for life sciences, our state needs to become a more attractive place for companies in the medical and biomedical industry to relocate.  By the numbers: Texas has one of the highest effective tax rates for the medical and biomedical manufacturing sector, taxing these businesses over 28%. For comparison, none of Texas’ largest competitors taxes the same industry more than 13.5%.  Proposition 10 is a constitutional amendment to exempt medical and biomedical manufacturers from the state’s inventory and equipment taxes, therefore reducing the effective tax rate for these manufacturers. If voters approve Proposition 10, Texas would be more attractive for existing medical and biomedical manufacturers to expand while also drawing new innovators to Texas from around the country and around the world.  Harris County Prop A: One step closer to urgent expansion The Harris Health System, our county’s hospital district, has provided care and served the residents of Harris County for nearly six decades. Acting as the county’s safety net care system and operating one of our two Level I Trauma Centers, the system is an integral part of our health care ecosystem.  By the numbers: Harris County's population has more than doubled in the past 30 years to nearly five million residents, while the facilities run by Harris Health have decreased in capacity, and many are nearing the end of their lifespans. This drastic increase in population over the decades has necessitated the need for an additional Level I Trauma Center, especially one located outside of the Texas Medical Center that is more easily accessible to all residents.  Harris County Proposition A seeks voter approval of a $2.5 billion bond issuance for constructing a new Level I Trauma Center, a new hospital, and other upgrades and investments in the Harris Health system’s facilities.  Important Election Information:  View the Greater Houston Partnership’s Ballot 2023 Initiative Guide before you head to the polls.  Important Election Information:  Last day to register to vote: Oct. 10 Early Voting: Oct. 23 – Nov. 3 General Election Day: Nov. 7 You may find more information on voting and polling locations here. Find more information on each of these ballot measures supported by the Greater Houston Partnership at Houston.org/2023ballot.
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Become a Member Today

Interested in joining the Partnership? Take the next step and learn how you can make an impact on Houston.

Get in touch with our team to:

  • Learn more about the Partnership's policy priorities
  • Get involved in a policy committee and meet industry peers 
  • Help shape the Partnership's policy initiatives
Taylor Landin
Executive Vice President and Chief Policy Officer
Public Policy
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tlandin@houston.org
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713-844-3624
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