By Murrel Bland

Compassionate, but very careful.

Simply stated, that is the view of U.S. Rep. Kevin Yoder (R-Third Dist.) when it comes to immigrants. That was among his remarks when he attended the monthly Congressional Forum at the Hilton Garden Inn in downtown Kansas City, Kan., Friday, Nov. 20. The Kansas City, Kansas, Area Chamber of Commerce sponsors the Forum.

Yoder said it will be most important for federal government agencies to be vigilant when screening immigrants, particularly those coming here from Syria. At the same time, Yoder said it was important to remember that this country was and is a nation of immigrants.

Yoder joined a bipartisan majority in the U.S. House of Representatives on Thursday, Nov. 19 in approving legislation that would hold up the Syrian resettlement effort until various federal agencies could certify that no refugee was a threat.

President Barrack Obama has assured the American people that the screening process for immigrants is very extensive.

Yoder said he is hopeful that the new Speaker of the House, U.S. Rep. Paul Ryan, 45, of Wisconsin, will be able to accomplish important matters. He said it will be a very significant challenge as it is the job in Washington that no one wants.

The effort to help assure adequate funding for the National Institute of Health will continue to be a priority for Yoder. He said he has introduced legislation that would first increase the funding from $30 billion to $33 billion in the first year and then 10 percent a year for ten years. He said that finding the cure for various diseases, particularly Alzheimers, would save considerable money long-term. He said? without a cure for Alzheimers, the cost for such patients could be $1 trillion by 2050.

Yoder said Congress continues to develop a six-year transportation plan. He said that the present gas tax of 18.4 per gallon is 98 percent adequate for road maintenance; however, the funds have been used for other transportation-related projects.

Yoder said the Third District Job Fair and Resource Expo will be held from 9 a.m. until 1 p.m. Friday, Dec. 11 at the Technical Education Center of the Kansas City, Kansas, Community College, 6565 State Ave. The first hour will be reserved for military veterans. The job fair will give area residents an opportunity to meet with business owners and managers seeking employees.

On a personal note, Yoder and his wife Brooke announced the birth of their second daughter Eloise Jane on Monday, Nov. 2.

Murrel Bland is the former editor of The Wyandotte West and The Piper Press. He is executive director of Business West.??