Introducing the Supermarket Tax Credit Act to Address Food Deserts
July 30, 2021
This week, Congressman Cohen introduced the Supermarket Tax Credit Act.
This week, I introduced the bipartisan Supermarket Tax Credit Act to address the problem of food deserts and the lack of fresh fruits and vegetables as well as the dearth of good-paying jobs for locals in places like the 9th Congressional District. As the new Co-Chairman of the Helsinki Commission, I welcomed back my former longtime Congressional office staffer William T. Connor IV as the Senior House Staff Representative for the Commission. I also demanded an explanation for the misguided funding formula used to award coronavirus-related grants to small airports; presided at a Judiciary Subcommittee hearing on strengthening the Voting Rights Act; raised questions about animal protection at a Natural Resources subcommittee hearing; introduced a bill to prevent autocrats from harassing dissidents by abusing INTERPOL; voted for seven appropriations bills supporting important Memphis priorities; announced a significant neurological research grant to St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital; offered Biden-Harris inauguration memorabilia in a lottery-type drawing; and offered a health tip. Keep reading and follow me on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram to see what I’m doing as it happens.
On Monday, I introduced the bipartisan Supermarket Tax Credit Act with Congressman Ken Buck, a Colorado Republican, to address the problem of food deserts in both rural and urban areas. The measure would help make fresh fruits and vegetables available where they are currently difficult to find and it would create incentives for hiring local residents and workers with barriers to employment. See my release on the measure here.
Helsinki Commission Chief of Staff Kyle Parker, Congressman Cohen and William Conner IV
On Tuesday, I announced that my former Legislative Assistant for Foreign Affairs, William T. Connor IV, will be the new Senior House Staff Representative for the Commission on Security and Cooperation in Europe, also known as the Helsinki Commission. The Overton High School, University of Memphis, and Georgetown University graduate is uniquely qualified to deal with the Commission’s mandate to defend democratic values, human rights and the rule of law. See my announcement of his appointment here.
Also Tuesday, as Chairman of the Judiciary Subcommittee on the Constitution, Civil Rights, and Civil Liberties, I presided at a hearing on the need to enhance the Voting Rights Act, the latest in a series of hearings establishing a record for restoring provisions of the landmark measure gutted by a 2013 U.S. Supreme Court decision. See my release on the hearing here.
On Thursday, the Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure held a hearing to assess the effectiveness and impact of coronavirus-related relief. I concentrated my line of questioning of the Federal Aviation Administration’s misguided funding formula that sent a massive windfall to small airports and asked how that happened. See my release including my questioning of the witnesses here.
On Thursday, I introduced the Transnational Repression Accountability and Prevention (TRAP) Act. This bill is intended to end abuse of the International Criminal Police Organization (INTERPOL) by autocrats misusing its detention mechanisms to pursue, harass, or persecute political opponents and dissidents with trumped up criminal charges. See my release on the measure here.
On Thursday evening, I voted on seven annual appropriations bills containing major increases in spending on SNAP, WIC, children’s nutrition, the Small Business Administration, transit programs and veterans. It also includes many of the local projects for the 9th Congressional District that I have been working to secure. See my release on the measures here.
Also on Thursday, I questioned expert witnesses at a hearing of the Natural Resources Subcommittee on Water, Oceans, and Wildlife about unsustainable overfishing, the threat posed by keeping primates as pets and whether Big Game hunters should be banned from bringing their trophies into the United States. See my release and those questions here.
On Monday, I announced a significant neurological research grant for St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital from one of the National Institutes of Health (NIH). See that release here.
Offering Biden-Harris Inauguration Memorabilia
Would you like to enter for an opportunity to receive inauguration memorabilia?
I am growing increasingly concerned that the pandemic is becoming a pandemic of the unvaccinated, and I worry about my constituents who, for whatever reasons, are still holding off getting the shot. Health officials have decided to keep the Pipkin Building vaccination center at the old Mid-South Fairgrounds, which was to have closed at the end of July, open though the end of August out of concern for the highly contagious Delta variant in our community. Please get the shot.
Vaccines are currently available for everyone 12 and older. If you need a ride to a vaccination site, you can call 901-RIDE901 (901-743-3901) to coordinate the best transportation option for you. The City of Memphis is also now coordinating with organizations, congregations, community groups, and businesses to host COVID-19 vaccinations. To find the latest information about vaccination sites, to request a vaccination appointment for a homebound individual, or to set up a community COVID vaccination event, visit https://covid19.memphistn.gov/.
“All of them — all of them were telling us, ‘Trump sent us.’” -- Aquilino A. Gonell, a U.S. Capitol Police sergeant, testifying Tuesday at the first session of the House Select Committee investigating the January 6 insurrection.
As always, I remain.