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Auctions of traditional vehicle registration marks to be held on March 16 and 17

     The Transport Department today (February 18) announced that two auctions of traditional vehicle registration marks will be held on March 16 (Saturday) and 17 (Sunday), in Meeting Room S221, L2 ...

Special arrangement for renewal of vehicle and driving licences

     The special arrangement for renewal of expiring and expired vehicle and driving licences implemented in previous years before Budget Day has proved to be effective in avoiding a rush. The ...

First subsidy of Public Transport Fare Subsidy Scheme ready for collection from February 16

     The Transport Department (TD) today (February 12) reminded members of the public that the Public Transport Fare Subsidy Scheme has been implemented since January 1, and commuters will be able to ...

Updated travel report for North Korea

Travel Report updated in the last 24hrs for North KoreaRecent Updates: Editorial change.Advisory Text: Avoid all travelWeb address :

Updated travel report for South Korea

Travel Report updated in the last 24hrs for South KoreaRecent Updates: Editorial change.Advisory Text: Exercise normal security precautionsWeb address :

Garamendi Introduces Bill To Prevent President Trump From Raiding Army Corps Disaster-Recovery Funds

WASHINGTON, DC—Today, Congressman John Garamendi (D-CA) introduced legislation (H.R.1137) to prevent President Trump from diverting disaster-recovery funds from Army Corps civil works projects to build his border wall.

Congressman Garamendi’s bill is cosponsored by Representatives Cisneros (D-CA), Velazquez (D-NY), Bera (D-CA), Gomez (D-CA), Takano (D-CA), Lowenthal (D-CA), Rouda (D-CA), Carbajal (D-CA), Huffman (D-CA), Eshoo (D-CA), Vargas (D-CA), Roybal-Allard (D-CA), Soto (D-FL), Lofgren (D-CA), Matsui (D-CA), Serrano (D-NY), Napolitano (D-CA), Plaskett (D-VI), and Harder (D-CA). All 7 Republican Members of Congress from California and the Resident Commissioner of Puerto Rico (R) were also invited to cosponsor the bill.

“Taking recovery funds from disaster victims as ransom for a border wall would be a new low, even for this President,” said Garamendi. “$14 billion in disaster-recovery funds are at risk of being gutted, including $2.5 billion each from civil works projects in California and Puerto Rico. No President has ever raided disaster-recovery funds, and we should not allow President Trump to be the first. My legislation would fully repeal the President’s authority to raid critical disaster recovery funds from the Army Corps of Engineers to build his misguided border wall.”

Congressman Garamendi’s bill (H.R.1137) would eliminate a provision from the Water Resources Development Act of 1986 (Public Law 99-662), authorizing Presidents to divert funding from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers’ civil works budget during a presidentially declared national emergency.

According to the nonpartisan Congressional Research Service, no President has ever invoked this 1986 legal authority, which was originally requested by the Reagan Administration for Congressionally declared wars and national emergencies requiring civil defense during the Cold War.

Last month, Congressman Garamendi received confirmation that the Trump Administration was considering diverting nearly $5 billion in disaster-recovery funding from Army Corps projects in California and Puerto Rico to fund construction of the President’s promised border wall. In February 2018, Congress approved (Public Law 115-123) this disaster-recovery funding for Army Corps civil work projects in response to damage from devastating wildfires and hurricanes across the nation.

Congressman Garamendi and other Congressional Democrats identified the 1986 provision as a possible legal authority President Trump could use divert Army Corps funding for his promised border wall.

The bill (H.R.1137) awaits action by the House Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure, of which Congressman Garamendi is a senior Democratic member.

The list of Army Corps civil works projects in California, Puerto Rico, and nationwide funded by federal disaster-recovery funds is available here.

 

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Special traffic and transport arrangements for Hong Kong Marathon 2019

     The Transport Department (TD) today (February 11) reminded the public that temporary road closures will be implemented in phases from 11.30pm this Saturday (February 16) to about 4pm this Sunday ...

Updated travel report for Brunei

Travel Report updated in the last 24hrs for BruneiRecent Updates: Advisory Text: Exercise normal security precautionsWeb address :

Updated travel report for American Samoa

Travel Report updated in the last 24hrs for American SamoaRecent Updates: Thorough review and update of the entire travel advice content.Advisory Text: Exercise normal security precautionsWeb address :

Auction of personalised vehicle registration marks on March 30

     The Transport Department (TD) today (February 8) announced that the next auction of personalised vehicle registration marks (PVRMs) will be held on March 30 (Saturday), at Meeting Room S421, L4, ...

Updated travel report for Philippines

Travel Report updated in the last 24hrs for PhilippinesRecent Updates: Natural disasters and climate - removal of information on flooding in the Bicol regionAdvisory Text: Exercise a high degree of caution (with regional advisories)Web address :

Updated travel report for Azores

Travel Report updated in the last 24hrs for AzoresRecent Updates: Minor changeAdvisory Text: Exercise normal security precautionsWeb address :

Garamendi Reintroduces American Food for American Schools Act

WASHINGTON, DC—Today, Congressman John Garamendi (D-CA) reintroduced the American Food for American Schools Act (H.R.1066) to strengthen “Buy American” requirements under the National School Lunch Program, with Congressman Doug LaMalfa (R-CA) as the original cosponsor. The Congressmen’s bipartisan bill would also increase transparency so that parents are informed when students are served foreign-produced foods paid for by taxpayers.

“Even in Northern Californian and Central Valley farming communities, some school districts use taxpayer dollars to buy imported foods. Some of those imported foods have been recalled due to safety concerns, when they could have been sourced locally in California,” said Congressman Garamendi (D-CA). “That’s why my American Food for American Schools Act would ensure that our schoolchildren are served nutritious, American-grown foods, produced under the strictest safety standards in the world.”

“Buying and using American-grown food products and improving nutrition for children in our schools should be an issue that both sides of the aisle can support,” said Congressman LaMalfa (R-CA). I’m happy to join with my colleague, Mr. Garamendi, to help ensure our children enjoy fresh, local produce instead of potentially less desirable alternatives from overseas. This bill holds school districts accountable for constantly requesting waivers to purchase foreign food products and helps ensure our tax dollars are used to buy healthy, high-quality, American-grown and made products for school lunches. It’s preferable to utilize food items that are produced right here in Northern California or in the USA.”

The bipartisan American Food for American Schools Act (H.R.1066) strengthens the “Buy American” provisions in current federal law requiring school districts to purchase domestically sourced products for in-school meals. Under the bill, school districts would be required to obtain a waiver from the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) to purchase foreign-sourced food products funded by the National School Lunch Program. Any such USDA waivers would only be granted if the domestically produced food was cost prohibitive or simply unavailable. Congressman Garamendi’s bill would also require that school districts notify parents of all foreign-sourced foods served to students, by posting any such waivers obtained from the USDA on the school’s website. This would increase public transparency and provide American farmers an opportunity to seek out school districts that need affordable domestically grown foods.

The American Food for American Schools Act has already earned support from key agricultural groups, in California and nationwide.

“When local school districts use taxpayer dollars to purchase and import food products that are readily available here, it is a real slap in the face to American farmers who are required to comply with a host of laws and regulations to ensure they are producing the safest supply of food in the world,” said Rich Hudgins, president and CEO of the California Canning Peach Association. “Yet China is notorious for environmental, human rights and food safety violations so why are we using taxpayer dollars to buy their food products and risk the health and safety of our children?”

The full text of H.R.1066 is available here. The bill currently awaits action by the House Committee on Education and Labor, which has jurisdiction over the USDA’s National School Lunch Program.

Garamendi Introduces Armed Services Legislation in Honor of Walter B. Jones

Washington, DC-Today, Congressman Garamendi (D-CA), a senior member of the House Armed Services Committee and Chairman of the Readiness Subcommittee, introduced H.R. 966, the Walter B. Jones Restoring Power to Congress Act. This legislation would repeal the 2001 Authorization for Use of Military Force (AUMF) within one year of enactment and is named after his good friend and long-time ally on AUMF-related issues, Congressman Walter Jones (R-NC).

“Congress has a Constitutional responsibility to debate and declare war, and we have abdicated that responsibility for far too long,” Garamendi stated. “That is why I am introducing this legislation to repeal the 2001 AUMF within one year of enactment, which would provide ample time to debate this important issue in Congress. I am also grateful to recognize the leadership of my dear friend, Walter Jones, who is currently in hospice care. Walter has championed this cause for years, I have worked with him closely on this issue in Congress. I am grateful for his wisdom, passion, and advocacy.”

For over 17 years, the United States has legitimized its efforts in Afghanistan with a broad AUMF—fewer than 60 words long—that was passed in 2001. But our objectives in Afghanistan today are fundamentally different than they were when the first AUMF was signed into law, and Congress has provided no modification of this authorization. Even worse, this 17-year-old AUMF was also so broadly written that presidents from both parties have used it to justify military action in South Asia, the Middle East, and Africa without Congressional approval and little oversight.

You can read the full text of the Walter B. Jones Restoring Power to Congress Act here.

Refund arrangements for e-Payment service at government tolled roads and tunnels

     The Transport Department (TD) today (February 4) said that since the implementation of the "stop-and-go" e-Payment service at government tolled roads and tunnels, a small number of motorists ...

Implementation of toll-free policy for small passenger vehicles using Hong Kong-Zhuhai-Macao Bridge Main Bridge during Lunar New Year holiday

     The Transport Department (TD) announced today (February 3) that according to the notification of the Hong Kong-Zhuhai-Macao Bridge (HZMB) Authority, the toll-free policy for small passenger ...

Temporary traffic and transport arrangements for tram track renewal works in Wan Chai District from next Friday

     The Transport Department (TD) today (February 1) reminded the public that to facilitate tram track renewal work at Hennessy Road, parts of the traffic lane of Hennessy Road westbound near ...

Temporary traffic and transport arrangements for tram track renewal works in Western District from next Friday

     The Transport Department (TD) today (February 1) reminded the public that to facilitate the tram track renewal works at Belcher's Street, parts of the middle lane of Belcher's Street near Kwan ...

Stena Line launches smart chatbot

Stena Line is in the process of launching the smartest chatbot into the ferry market. Stina will help make the customer experience even better by providing assistance in booking a trip as well as answering questions 24/7. The chatbot is an important milestone for Stena Line in its quest to becoming the world’s first cognitive ferry company. [image] Stina can give Stena Line’s customers updates regarding information on departure times, prices and can answer the most frequently asked questions 24/7. For example, if customers are allowed to bring pets on board, how to change a booking and

Updated travel report for India

Travel Report updated in the last 24hrs for IndiaRecent Updates: Editorial change.Advisory Text: Exercise a high degree of caution (with regional advisories)Web address :

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