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Supply Chain News: National Association of Manufacturers Sees Opportunity, Launches State of Manufacturing Tour


Factory Visits, Emphasis on Three "Big Ticket" Policy Items: Regulatory and Tax Reform, Infrastructure

Feb. 28, 2017
SCDigest Editorial Staff

Sensing the focus President Trump is placing on reviving US manufacturing, the National Association of Manufacturers (NAM) hopes to enlighten the public about what the sector needs for greater success with a "State of Manufacturing Tour."

Supply Chain Digest Says...

297,696 specific regulations impact manufacturing, and the cost of regulatory compliance for small manufacturers is $35,000 per employee per year.

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The tour involves stops in six cities, generally with visits to multiple factories in each area, led by NAM CEO Jay Timmons. The tour started in Austin, TX, and includes a presentation by Timmons in addition to the factory tours.

On Monday, Timmons was in the Columbus, OH area, with stops at a Honda plant, an brewery, and a Worthington Steel factory.

In addition to Austin and Columbus, the tour has already stopped in New York City and Detroit, and is headed to Pittsburgh on Tuesday, followed a visit to Madison, WI, on Wednesday.

Industry Week magazine reported on Timmons' presentation to the Detroit Economic Club.

"The last two years - really the last two months - have brought us a lot of surprises, including many positive developments," Timmons said. "Of course, we have questions and concerns on issues like trade and immigration. But it's undeniable that for the millions of men and women who make things in America, the state of manufacturing is growing stronger and they're more optimistic."

Commenting on the loss of US factories over many years, Timmons said "For so many, that's a true source of pain. And as business leaders, we have an obligation and a responsibility to address that head-on."

Even now, Timmons said, research from NAM and Deloitte found that there are currently 350,000 open manufacturing jobs in the US, and as many as 3.5 million jobs over the next decade.

Timmons also outlined what he called the three "big ticket" items on the NAM priority list: regulatory reform, infrastructure investment and tax reform.

Timmons cited two jarring number from a recent NAM study: 297,696 specific regulations impact manufacturing, and the cost of regulatory compliance for small manufacturers is $35,000 per employee per year. Reduce that burden, Timmons said, and many jobs in manufacturing will be created.

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Timmons said that "making regulations smarter, simpler, and streamlined is one of the quickest ways to create jobs and give manufacturers the confidence they need to expand. If we can work together, from the Department of Labor to the EPA, I guarantee you we will achieve those goals."

On infrastructure, Timmons said that "It's great to have the administration focusing on infrastructure, and we hear public statements from many Democrats and Republicans about the type of modernization we're calling for. So I think we've got a great foundation to build on here, and it's really not an issue you can overstate."

On taxes, Timmons said "We want to reduce the corporate tax rate to 15%, which is what the President has proposed. Small businesses have to see reduced taxes, as well. They can't be left behind."

Timmons in fact met with president Trump along with the CEOs of a number of major manufacturing companies at the White House last week.

Is NAM smart to launch a manufacturing outreach right now? What do you think of Timmons' three "Big Ticket" policy items? "Let us know your thoughts at the Feedback section below.


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