Veterans and Consumers Fair Credit Act
This week, I, along with Jesús "Chuy" García (D-IL), introduced the bipartisan H.R. 5050, the Veterans and Consumers Fair Credit Act (VCFCA). This bill will curb high-cost, predatory payday loans, auto-title loans and similar forms of toxic credit across America. A bicameral companion bill is being introduced in the Senate by Senators Jeff Merkley (D-OR), Jack Reed (D-RI), Sherrod Brown (D-OH) and Chris Van Hollen (D-MD). 

In 2006, Congress passed the bipartisan Military Lending Act, which required the Department of Defense to institute a 36 percent interest rate cap when active duty servicemembers and their families take out loans. This wildly successful rule has protected servicemembers and their families from falling into a cycle of debt that would harm themselves, their families and/or make them unable to perform their duties in the military. This 36 percent interest rate cap does not apply to veterans, Gold Star Families or anyone else for that matter.

My bill will extend this 36 percent interest rate cap on predatory payday loans, auto-title loans and similar forms of toxic credit not only to our nation’s veterans and Gold Star families, but also to all Americans. With 12 million individuals taking out payday loans in America every year and payday loans carrying an average interest rate of 391%, now is the time to act and protect Americans from financial harm.

Usury has been condemned since Biblical times. Historically, the United States has had usury laws, putting a guard rail up for borrowers. As more and more loans are given online, it becomes more difficult for states to deal with the problem of snowballing debt. We already protect military service members under the Military Lending Act, which means that we have recognized the predatory nature of high-interest loans to our men and women in uniform. This raises the question – if it is wrong to allow predatory lenders to target our service members, why is it right to let them target the rest of the community?

In the picture below, I am speaking with members of the press about my bill. The more light we shed on this subject, the better chance we'll have to put an end to this immoral practice. I am grateful I was able to share VCFCA's impact on multiple occasions this week, and look forward to continuing the dialogue on this practice that will benefit many Americans.

National Apprenticeship Week
Happy National Apprenticeship Week! This week, I spoke from the House floor to reaffirm my support for apprenticeship programs. 

One of the greatest challenges America faces is the fact that we have a record-high seven million job vacancies and a growing need for skilled labor. In Wisconsin, I speak with manufacturers often about their struggle to find workers with the right set of skills. This is a problem that, unfortunately, is seen throughout the country. 

Fortunately, apprenticeships are a viable solution to train workers for these high-paying, high-demand jobs. The U.S. Department of Labor has reported that 94% of individuals that complete apprenticeship programs not only find jobs, but make an average starting salary of $70,000.

As a member of the House Education and Labor Committee, I will continue to seek opportunities to expand apprenticeship programs and encourage young Wisconsinites to seek out these high-paying, high-demand jobs.

To watch my speech on National Apprenticeship Week, please click here or on the picture below.

Resources for Veterans

On Monday, we celebrated Veterans Day and paid respects to the heroic men and women who fight for our freedom. Thanks to my staffers Chad (Fond du Lac) and Ryan (D.C.) for your service to our country!

If you’re active duty or a veteran and are in need of help with a government agency or are having problems with your benefits or the VA, please feel free to call Chad, my military constituent services representative, at 920-907-0624.

Additionally, if you are a veteran and would like to file disability claims online or find your nearest VA to access immediate care, I encourage you to check out the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs' weekly newsletter for veterans by clicking here. You can also find more information for veterans and military personnel on my website.

Thank you to all of the brave men and women who have served our country in the name of freedom.

Weekly Roundup

This picture was taken after my meeting with the National Association of Theatre Owners, who represent over 33,000 movie screens in all 50 states. We discussed the regulatory and tax issues facing the film industry.

Trade with Mexico and Canada supports 12 million jobs across the country, including dairy and manufacturing jobs in Wisconsin. Leaders of all three countries agree that this is a great deal for everyone, so I hope House Speaker Nancy Pelosi will bring the USMCA to a vote soon.

It was a pleasure to meet with the U.S. Department of Education's Acting Assistant Secretary Mark Allan Schultz. We discussed ways to retain and expand workplace opportunities for individuals with disabilities. This is an issue I have long championed and will continue to fight for.

Happy 100th Anniversary to the American Farm Bureau Federation! Thanks for your dedication to advocating on behalf of farmers and ranchers all over America and Wisconsin.

This Veterans Day, I had the honor of touring the Oshkosh Military Veterans Museum. Thank you to everyone featured in the museum, and all of our veterans and active duty service members who fight to keep America safe.

Contact Me
As your Congressman, I’m here to serve you. If you have any questions please don’t hesitate to reach out to my offices in Fond du Lac and Washington. If you enjoyed this newsletter be sure to forward it to your family and friends so they can stay informed on what I’m doing in Washington and the Sixth District. 

You can also stay up-to-the-minute by following me on Facebook (Congressman Glenn Grothman), Twitter (@RepGrothman) and Instagram (@RepGlennGrothman).

Member of Congress