Oct 18 2012
This week, I was delighted to visit Richardson High School to present Patricia Hofeditz with the 2012 Outstanding Teaching of the Humanities Award. Patricia currently teaches 12th grade English and Advanced Placement Literature and Composition. The Outstanding Teaching of the Humanities Award is given by Humanities Texas, the state affiliate of the National Endowment for the Humanities, and is awarded annually to exemplary K—12 teachers.
KPMG Executive Business Issues Forum
On Wednesday, I was pleased to serve as the keynote speaker at the KPMG Executive Business Issues Forum to discuss the current state of the economy. We discussed the impact of our spending-driven debt crisis and the $1 trillion budget deficits we’ve witnessed over the past four years under President Obama.
In order to remain globally competitive and pay down our unsustainable debt, we must reduce unnecessary government spending and encourage job creation through keeping taxes low, removing burdensome regulations and reforming our complex tax code. With nearly 23 million Americans struggling to find work in our economy, it is clear that we cannot continue to tax, borrow and spend to prosperity. It is imperative that we promote pro-growth policies today to reenergize the free enterprise system, encourage entrepreneurship and get Americans back to work.
State Department Travel Tips
If you and your family plan to travel overseas during the upcoming holiday season or in the next several months, it is important to review the State Department’s proposed tips for your safety. They offer several beneficial programs, such as the Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP), to give prospective travelers a way to contact the State Department directly in the event of an emergency, such as a lost or stolen passport. I encourage you to read through these safety measures, provided by the State Department, to ensure that you are well prepared to make informed decisions about your future travel plans.
- Sign up for the Smart Traveler Enrollment Program so the State Department can better assist you in an emergency: Let us know your travel plans through the Smart Traveler Enrollment Program, a free online service at https://travelregistration.state.gov. This will help us contact you if there is a family emergency in the U.S., or if there is a crisis where you are traveling. In accordance with the Privacy Act, information on your welfare and whereabouts will not be released to others without your express authorization.
- Sign passport, and fill in the emergency information: Make sure you have a signed, valid passport, and a visa, if required, and fill in the emergency information page of your passport.
- Leave copies of itinerary and passport data page: Leave copies of your itinerary, passport data page and visas with family or friends, so you can be contacted in case of an emergency.
- Check your overseas medical insurance coverage: Ask your medical insurance company if your policy applies overseas, and if it covers emergency expenses such as medical evacuation. If it does not, consider supplemental insurance.
- Familiarize yourself with local conditions and laws: While in a foreign country, you are subject to its laws. The State Department web site at http://travel.state.gov/travel/cis_pa_tw/cis/cis_1765.html has useful safety and other information about the countries you will visit.
- Take precautions to avoid being a target of crime:To avoid being a target of crime, do not wear conspicuous clothing or jewelry and do not carry excessive amounts of money. Also, do not leave unattended luggage in public areas and do not accept packages from strangers.
- Contact us in an emergency:Consular personnel at U.S. Embassies and Consulates abroad and in the U.S. are available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, to provide emergency assistance to U.S. citizens. Contact information for U.S. Embassies and Consulates appears on the Bureau of Consular Affairs website at http://travel.state.gov. Also note that the Office of Overseas Citizen Services in the State Department’s Bureau of Consular Affairs may be reached for assistance with emergencies at 1-888-407-4747, if calling from the U.S. or Canada, or 202-501-4444, if calling from overseas.