|Name||Nick Joe Rahall II|
|Address||1801 Harper Road |
Beckley, West Virginia , United States
|| May 20, 1949
|Last Modifed||Mr. Matt|
Sep 27, 2012 10:17am
Arab - Married - Freemason - Presbyterian - Straight -
|Info||Congressman Nick Rahall of Beckley represents the Third Congressional District of West Virginia. First elected in 1976, he is currently serving his 14th term and is the Dean of the West Virginia Delegation to the U.S. House of Representatives. |
Rahall is well known for his expertise in national policies relating to transportation, and infrastructure, energy and the environment. In addition, he is a tireless fighter for the Appalachian Regional Commission, black lung benefits, veteran?s benefits, and mine health and safety issues. In the House of Representatives, Rahall serves on the Committee on Resources where he is the Ranking Democratic Member and the Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure where he is the second senior Democrat.
In the area of transportation and infrastructure, Rahall is a national leader in the development of federal highway and transit legislation. During the 103rd Congress, he chaired the House Subcommittee on Surface Transportation and was the Ranking Democratic Member on the Ground Transportation Subcommittee during the 104th through 106th Congresses. Rahall currently serves on three panels of the Transportation and Infrastructure Committee: Highways and Transit, Railroads, and Aviation. A veteran of every federal highway bill since coming to Congress, Rahall was a key architect in the formulation of the Transportation Equity Act for the 21st Century (known as TEA 21). In that bill, he secured the most dollars for designated highway projects than any other Member of Congress and established the Rahall Transportation Institute (RTI), a consortium of five Southern West Virginia colleges, housed at Marshall University. Recently, Rahall helped RTI win designation as a National Maritime Enhancement Institute to enable the school to compete for federal grants related to a great number of maritime activities. This is one of only seven so-named universities in the nation, further advancing RTI?s mission of ?Building Jobs through Transportation? for West Virginia.
Deeply involved in the development of numerous water resources and development acts, Rahall is responsible for many U.S. Army Corps of Engineers flood control and related projects in southern West Virginia including the establishment of the Southern West Virginia Environmental Infrastructure Program. In the area of aviation policy, Rahall devised programs to assist airports in small communities and rural areas, as well as to promote intermodal transportation developments at these airports, in the Aviation Investment and Reform Act for the 21st Century (known as AIR 21).
Rahall is also a Congressional leader on mining-related issues. In 1985, he assumed the chairmanship of the House Subcommittee on Mining and Natural Resources, a position he held until 1993 when he became chairman of the House Surface Transportation Subcommittee, and transformed what had been a moribund panel into one engaged in the aggressive oversight and reform of many of the Nation?s antiquated federal mining laws to bring them more in line with the public interest. During this period, Rahall gained the enactment of legislation overhauling the federal onshore oil and gas and geothermal stream leasing systems and started the effort to reform the Mining Law of 1872.
He also took on the cause of greater protections for coalfield citizens by twice spearheading legislation to extend the Abandoned Mine Reclamation program, which provides funds to combat health, safety and environmental threats from old mine sites. In the course of this effort, provisions were included to allow these funds to be used for public water supply systems in the coalfields as well as to help finance health care for retired coal miners. Rahall additionally gained enactment of provisions to provide coalfield citizens with protections from subsidence caused by underground coal mining.
In other areas related to mining and minerals, Rahall is the sponsor of legislation to promote the remining of lands previously mined for coal, the Coalbed Methane Development Program, the reauthorization of the Mining and Mineral Resources Research Institute program, the Rahall/Byrd amendment to the Export-Import Bank Reauthorization prohibiting the financing of foreign mining ventures and the National Geologic Mapping Act of 1992.
Rahall?s work on the Resources Committee, however, has not all been related to mining. He is the author of the 1978 legislation, which established the New River Gorge National River as a unit of the National Park System in southern West Virginia. Ten years later he gained enactment of legislation to designate the Gauley River National Recreation Area and the Bluestone National Scenic River, in the process creating the largest network of federally protected rivers in the eastern United States. Rahall legislation also established the National Coal Heritage Area in 11 southern West Virginia counties.
Numerous State and national organizations have recognized Congressman Rahall for his work. For his work on environmental issues, he is the recipient of the 1997 Citizen?s Coal Council award, the 1996 "Keeper of the Flame Award" presented in 1996 by Interior Secretary Bruce Babbitt and the 1990 "Friend of the Earth Award" for his work on protecting the coalfield environment, the Sierra Club?s 1988 "Seneca Award" for Outstanding Environmental Stewardship and American River's 1988 "River Conservation Award.?
In the area of transportation, Rahall has received the American Road & Transportation Builders Association?s 1997 Public Service Award and the 1996 Highway Safety Leader Award. Diverse organizations such as the National Association of Home Care, the West Virginia Home Health Council, the West Virginia Credit Union and the American Federation of Government Employees of West Virginia have also recognized Rahall?s public service.
A 33rd degree Mason, Rahall is a life member of the National Rifle Association, Elks, Moose, and the NAACP. Before his election to the Congress, Rahall served as a staff assistant to U.S. Senator Robert C. Byrd, and as a businessman. Congressman Rahall has three children: Rebecca, Nick Joe, III and Suzanne Nicole
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