One hundred days into his first term in office, U.S. Representative Lee Zeldin has proposed an amendment, introduced four bills, cosponsored more than two dozen others and made countless appearances on national news television shows.
Mr. Zeldin, a Republican from Shirley, has focused the brunt of his efforts on veterans affairs, education and, as the only Jewish Republican now serving in the House of Representatives, conflicts in the Middle East, particularly those related to Israel.
He has introduced four bills thus far, and two have been aimed at helping veterans and their families. House Resolution 1187 would eliminate limits on home loans that the Veterans Affairs Department can guarantee for veterans, and House Resolution 1569 would require Veterans Affairs to pay accrued benefits to the estates of dead veterans so they can be passed along to their descendants.
Both bills have been heard by their respective subcommittees under the House Committee on Veterans’ Affairs, on which Mr. Zeldin sits. HR 1187 was referred to the full committee for a vote on April 16, while HR 1569 is still with the Subcommittee on Disability Assistance and Memorial Affairs.
The other bills are HR 1888, which seeks to create a regional approach for handling summer flounder, also called fluke, and HR 1887, which was originally introduced by Mr. Zeldin’s predecessor, Tim Bishop of Southampton, and aims to block the sale of Plum Island, an 840-acre island that sits off the coast of Orient Point and once housed the Plum Island Animal Disease Center.
In late February, Mr. Zeldin introduced an amendment, which he dubbed the “Zeldin Amendment,” to an education appropriations bill. The amendment would allow individual states to withdraw from their commitment to Common Core standards without losing federal educational funding. Although Mr. Zeldin’s amendment was approved, no action has been taken on that bill since.
Mr. Zeldin also was one of 32 cosponsors for the Student Testing Improvement and Accountability Act, which would roll back federally mandated testing to levels that existed before the No Child Left Behind Act of 2001. That bill has been referred to the House Committee on Education and the Workforce.
Moving forward, according to a video release via his YouTube channel, Mr. Zeldin said he also wants to focus on addressing the issue of helicopter noise on the East End.
“My team and I are working hard to pursue an immediate solution, joining with local elected officials and community groups from all across the East End,” he states in the video.
Though his next election is 18 months away, Mr. Zeldin’s campaign has taken no breaks. Earlier this month, his campaign released its quarterly financial report, showing almost $460,000 in contributions.
The campaign targeted small donations with an email blast campaign seeking “$16 for ’16” for an “online MoneyBomb” during the run-up to the April 1 filing deadline. According to documents on file with the Federal Elections Commission, three people donated $16 and one person donated $15; most of the 257 individual donors gave at least $250 and an estimated two dozen people contributed the maximum amount, $2,700.