• Supporting Investment in Advanced Vehicles and Infrastructure through a New Tax Credit and an Extension of Tax Credits to Support Cellulosic Biofuels. The President is announcing a new tax credit to catalyze investment in the necessary infrastructure to support deployment of advanced vehicles at critical mass. This proposal would be fuel neutral, allowing the private sector to determine if biofuels, electrification, natural gas, hydrogen, or other alternative fuels would be the best fit in different communities. In addition, the President proposed to extend the cellulosic biofuel producer credit that expired on December 31, 2013. Cellulosic biofuels have the potential to reduce petroleum consumption and carbon pollution while boosting rural economic development. Extending the existing tax credit would accelerate development of this transformative transportation fuel.
Schools & Education Opportunity
• Making Progress Through Executive Action •
• Connecting 20 Million Students in 15,000 Schools to the Best Technology to Enrich and Personalize K-12 Education. Technology has the potential to transform education in America, allowing students to learn more, to do so at their own pace, and to develop the knowledge and skills employers demand. The President announced his ConnectED initiative in June to make this opportunity real for all American students, starting with his goal of connecting 99% of students to next-generation connectivity within five years. The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) answered the President’s call to action last August and announced efforts to modernize and expand the E-Rate program, to bring it into the modern era, and more fully meet the needs of schools and libraries as they connect high-speed broadband. In his State of the Union address, the President announced that with the support of the FCC, we will make a major down-payment on his goal, connecting more than 15,000 schools and 20 million students over the next two years – without adding a dime to the deficit. Companies like Apple, Microsoft, Sprint and Verizon are answering the call, and in the coming weeks, the President will highlight further details of new programs and partnerships that accelerate his vision of technology-enriched classrooms across America.
• Redesigning High Schools to Teach the Real-World Skills That Kids Need. Too few of America’s students are meaningfully engaged by their academic experience while in high school. Many high school graduates lack exposure to learning that links their work in school to college and careers—especially in the critically important fields of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM). Moreover, many of America’s international competitors offer students a more rigorous and relevant education in their middle and high school years. The President has called for a comprehensive effort to rethink the high school experience, challenging schools to scale up innovative models that will redesign and personalize teaching and learning for students, so that they receive the rigorous and relevant education needed to graduate and transition into postsecondary learning and adulthood. This year, the Administration will take the first step toward that goal by announcing the winners of a $100 million competition for Youth CareerConnect – grants that will provide high school students with the industry-relevant education and skills they need for a successful future – as part of its effort to ensure that high schools prepare students for college and careers.
Rep. Elijah Cummings, D-Md., right, hugs Harold Schaitberger, General President of the International Association of Fire Fighters, after the Congressman spoke at the IAFF's Legislative Conference General Session at the Hyatt Regency on Capitol Hill, March 9, 2015. The day featured addresses by members of Congress and Vice President Joe Biden.