Congressman Ralph Regula (R-Ohio) is ranking minority member of the House Appropriations Subcommittee for Labor, Health, Human Services and Education funding. The subcommittee's budget, the largest discretionary domestic account, is over $140 billion. Regula, a former teacher and principal, is a Congressional leader in pushing for alternative solutions in improving reading skills, developing teacher training and increasing Pell Grant funding so that poorer and middle class students can obtain two and four year degrees. Regula has also increased by millions of dollars the amount of federal money committed to research in fighting cancer, heart disease and birth defects. Regula is a member of the moderate Republican Main Street Partnership and supports stem cell research.
Regula is also a Congressional leader in alternative energy sources. He has been an early champion of fuel cell technology and he has directed federal funding back to his home state, Ohio, which is recognized as a national leader in fuel cell research and development. Additionally, Regula is a proponent of clean coal. Ohio and its neighboring states have an abundant supply of coal and Regula believes that it could help alleviate the nation's energy problems because larger energy users, such a large manufacturers, could use clean coal rather than natural gas. Such utilization would help reduce home energy costs and free up the demand for natural gas.
Regula is known for his effective constituent services. He comes home every weekend from Washington to work on his farm, which is located south of Canton. His district consists of Ashland, Medina, Stark and Wayne Counties with Stark County making up over 60% of the district's population. Although the 16th District is competitive in Presidential elections, Regula consistently runs 15% to 20% ahead of the Republican candidate for President.
Regula, a former country lawyer, U.S. Navy veteran and state legislator, was first elected in 1972. Previously he had served on the Ohio Board of Education and in the Ohio House and Ohio Senate. An alumnus of Mount Union College, he is married to Mary who he met there, and they have three children and four grandchildren.