5/5/2011 - Washington, DC – U.S. Rep. Tom Graves (R-GA-09), member of the House Appropriations Committee, issued the following statement after voting for H.R. 1230, the Restarting American Offshore Leasing Now Act, which increases energy production and creates jobs by requiring the Secretary of the Interior to conduct oil and natural gas lease sales in the Gulf of Mexico and offshore Virginia that have been delayed or cancelled by the Obama Administration:
“According to AAA, the national average for gas prices in America today is $3.98 per gallon, and with summer driving season upon us, the price of fuel is likely to increase. In the face of these facts, which threaten our fragile economy and hamper job growth, the Obama Administration’s only practical energy policy has been to constrain future oil supply by preventing more drilling.
“This nothin’ doin’ attitude toward energy production harms American pocketbooks and our entire economy both now and in the future. Clearly, our country needs a long term strategy for energy production and independence, but the President’s focus on green subsidies and energy taxes has been tailored for political points rather than positive impact. While the President clings to the idea that solar panels and wind turbines will get my constituents to work next week, House Republicans are taking the initiative to increase oil supply and lower gas prices. Simply put, we gotta drill. Our country has been richly blessed with these resources, and I believe more access and exploration means a better, less burdensome life for the American people.”
Additional information provided by the House Natural Resources Committee:
H.R. 1230 would require the following four lease sales to occur before June 1, 2012 or within one year after enactment of the bill: one lease sale off the Virginia Coast (#220), and three Gulf of Mexico lease sales (#216, #218 and #222).
The Congressional Budget Office estimates that H.R. 1230 would generate $40 million in new revenue over the next decade.
According to a study by the Southeast Energy Alliance, offshore energy development in Virginia could create nearly 2,000 jobs in Virginia and produce more than a half billion barrels of oil and 2.5 trillion cubic feet of natural gas.