Dear Friend,

Below is an update on the Colonial Pipeline crisis, National Police Week, and more.  You will also find the latest North Carolina COVID-19 update.

Strengthening Our Energy Infrastructure
On May 7, 2021, the Colonial Pipeline Company suffered from a cybersecurity attack which forced the 5,500-mile Colonial Pipeline offline.  
With the pipeline transporting nearly half of the East Coast’s fuel supply, many Americans faced concerns about potential gasoline shortages.  This caused long lines at the pump and, in some cases such as Southeastern North Carolina, a complete lack of gasoline supply.  
The Colonial Pipeline cybersecurity attack underscores the need to invest in a more robust and secure energy future.  Without changes, we will be unable to attain the pipeline and refinery infrastructure our nation needs to insulate itself from cyber-attacks like the one against the Colonial Pipeline.  We need more opportunities for reliable energy — not less.
Current regulatory burdens and outdated permitting processes have prevented construction of new pipelines to help bring fuel to areas of the country that need it most.  I’m proud to lead a letter with 63 of my colleagues urging President Biden to make permanent reforms we need for the sustainable future of our economy and energy infrastructure.  You can read the full letter here.
Honoring National Police Week
This past week was National Police Week.  It is terrible that some have turned their backs on our law enforcement, but there are many of us who have not!  I proudly stand with America’s law enforcement officers and remain committed to protecting their ability to carry out their heroic work.
For today’s good news story, I want to highlight several Wilmington Police Department officers who received honors during National Police Week.  “The officers were honored for several things, like running into a burning building and rescuing a person with the help of a civilian, and resolving incidents peacefully, like when a man opened fire on SWAT officers during a standoff in Creekwood in September.”  Please join me in thanking these law enforcement heroes who put their lives on the line every day to protect citizens from harm and keep our communities safe.
Investing in Clean Water Infrastructure
In many communities in NC-07 and around the Nation, water and wastewater infrastructure is long past its design life and in need of urgent repair, replacement, and upgrading.  This is especially the case for many of our small and rural communities. 
I introduced legislation this past week that will help states and local communities – including small and rural communities – address their wastewater infrastructure needs.  The bill improves the wastewater infrastructure permitting process and provides flexibility communities often need to take on complex projects.
I’m proud to introduce this bill, which will provide struggling communities with the resources and flexibility necessary to address their growing needs as well as establish greater resiliency and sustainability of the Nation’s wastewater infrastructure.  Click here to read more about this legislation.
The Impacts of President Biden’s Progressive Agenda
I also wanted to share the below Fox News interview with former Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich from Sunday a week ago.  In it, he discusses the Biden administration's progressive policies and examines the impact his agenda will have on the Nation.  Click here or on the image below to watch the interview.  It’s one of the best covering all the critical issues that I’ve seen lately. 
North Carolina COVID-19 Update
COVID-19 vaccines are available in North Carolina to everyone ages 12 and older.  Those aged 12-17 may only receive the Pfizer vaccine.
Additionally, North Carolina Governor Roy Cooper announced the state will remove its indoor mask mandate for most settings.  The state will also lift all mass gathering limits and social distancing requirements.  These changes are now in effect.  For more information, read a FAQ about the recent Order
Emergency Broadband Benefit Program
The Emergency Broadband Benefit Program gives low-income households a discount on internet services due to the COVID-19 pandemic.  The program, administered by the Federal Communications Commission, opened for enrollment on May 12, 2021.  Click here for more information.
Stay tuned for more information and updates…