Manufacturing Focus of Obama Budget Garners Alliance Praise
Feb 17, 2012
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"It's fair to say that we have not seen a budget with a focus on manufacturing jobs like this for at least thirty years," said Scott Paul, Executive Director of the Alliance for American Manufacturing (AAM), in response to the 2013 budget unveiled by President Obama.

Paul specifically praised the initiatives in the budget geared toward rebuilding U.S. manufacturing. Proposals include $26 million for the creation of a new Interagency Trade Enforcement Center (ITEC) intended to challenge unfair practices by America's trading partners.

"While I'm not certain how many of these proposals will ultimately become law, I am pleased the President's budget has such a strong focus on American manufacturing," Paul said.

"Tax incentives for insourcing, domestic hiring, production, and innovation will create good jobs; they are policies that AAM has been pushing for several years," Paul said. "New incentives for making factories more energy efficient are good for jobs, the environment, and the competitiveness of our industry.

Paul added: "A strong focus on trade enforcement, which the Administration proposes, is crucial for reducing our record $295 billion trade deficit with China and guaranteeing a level playing field for American workers and businesses."

"New investments in technical and community colleges for students interested in advanced manufacturing will help to ensure that a fresh generation of workers can pursue meaningful careers," Paul said.

"Investment in infrastructure, through a major, multi-year program and a National Infrastructure Bank, will ensure that our economy is efficient and our businesses are more competitive. Such investments would also spark demand for manufactured materials."

AAM said the 2013 budget's pro-manufacturing proposals include:

* $2.2 billion for Federal advanced manufacturing R&D, a 19% increase over 2012. This doubles the budgets for the National Science Foundation (NSF), the Department of Energy's (DOE's) Office of Science, and the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) labs.
* Making permanent the R&D tax credit.
* $149 million for research at the National Science Foundation (NSF) to develop new manufacturing technologies in partnership with the private sector.
* Revisions to the tax system to encourage domestic job creation, including corporate tax reform that will "close loopholes, lower the overall rate, encourage investment here at home, and not add a dime to the deficit."
* $290 million for the Advanced Manufacturing Office at the DOE Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy - more than the amount in 2012.
* $47 billion over six years, plus $6 billion in 2012, to fund the development of high-speed rail and other passenger rail programs as part of an integrated national strategy.
* Creation of an independent, non-partisan National Infrastructure Bank (NIB) to help fund large-scale ($100 million minimum) transportation, water, and energy infrastructure projects. The NIB would issue loans and loan guarantees to eligible projects. To maximize leverage from Federal investments, the NIB would finance no more than 50% of the total costs of any project.
* $430 million - $19 million more than in 2012 - for the Export-Import Bank, the U.S. Trade and Development Agency, the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative, the U.S. International Trade Commission, and the Overseas Private Investment Corporation (OPIC).
* $517 million for the Department of Commerce's International Trade Administration (ITA), up $61 million over 2012 levels, to strengthen its efforts to promote exports from small businesses; help enforce domestic and international trade rules; fight to eliminate barriers on sales of U.S. goods and services; and improve the competitiveness of U.S. firms. This includes $26 million for the creation of a new Interagency Trade Enforcement Center (ITEC) intended to challenge unfair practices by America's trading partners.
* $1.1 billion for reauthorization and reform of the Career and Technical Education (CTE) program, which otherwise will expire in 2013.
* $476 billion for a six-year surface transportation reauthorization package, including an immediate investment of $50 billion for roads, rails, and runways.

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