American Manufacturing Gets Major Votes of Support from Rep. Dahlkemper this Week Print E-mail
Friday, 17 September 2010 13:14

Two Buy American bills, a rural energy measure and testimony before the ITC all support American manufacturers

Washington—This week, Western Pennsylvania’s manufacturers received a major showing of support from Congresswoman Kathy Dahlkemper (PA-3), who voted for three separate bills that will help drive the demand for American-made goods, including a loan program for rural homeowners, and testified at the U.S. International Trade Commission on behalf of the American steel industry.

“For the last 13 months, our manufacturing sector has grown. The plans I’m supporting to increase demand for American manufactured goods can help accelerate this forward momentum in the industry. A strong manufacturing industry ultimately means good jobs in our communities. That’s what supporting our manufacturers and buying American is all about: creating jobs right here at home,” said Rep. Dahlkemper.

Two Measures to Make the Federal Government Buy American

“Our government of the people should be using products by the people, it’s that simple. When it comes down to an American product or a foreign competitor, our government should choose the one that’s made in America. That’s what the Make It in America plan is about—strengthening manufacturing and making us more competitive here and abroad,” said Rep. Dahlkemper.

On Wednesday, Rep. Dahlkemper lent her support to two bills that will boost American manufacturing and create jobs by requiring the Congress and Department of Homeland Security to purchase products that are made in America. The bills, the Congressional Made in America Promise Act and the Berry Amendment Extension Act, are part of the Democratic “Make It in America” national manufacturing plan to create high-skill, high-wage jobs for the future by promoting American competitiveness, innovation, and exports.

The Congressional Made in America Promise Act Requires Congress to buy goods and services made by American workers for the first time since “Buy American” rules were instituted for federal agencies under President Roosevelt in 1933, including tighter Buy American requirements for items with the seal of Congress, the House, or Senate.

The Berry Amendment Extension Act bars the Department of Homeland Security from buying clothing, tents and other products that are not “grown, reprocessed, reused or produced” in America. For the last 60 years, the Berry Amendment has served our nation well requiring the Defense Department and the Coast Guard to buy a range of domestically produced or grown items with 100% U.S. content, and this bill extends that requirement to DHS.

“When the federal government buys American, it creates a major customer for manufacturers right here in the U.S. We all know that the federal government spends a lot of money, so let’s put those dollars right back into American businesses and help create demand for their products and the jobs that go along with it,” said Rep. Dahlkemper.

Saving Money for Rural Homeowners & Increasing Demand for American Energy Products

On Thursday, the House passed the Rural Energy Savings Act, or “Rural Star,” which will provide loans to American families and farmers to improve their energy efficiency and lower their utility bills, creating American manufacturing and installation jobs in the process.

“Our rural communities have been hit hard during the recession. The Rural Star program will give those communities a boost, putting money into homeowners’ pockets, creating jobs for contractors and workers and moving merchandise at local hardware and supply stores. It’s an investment in rural communities that I am proud to support,” said Rep. Dahlkemper.

Through this program, homeowners can get loans of about $3,000 to $7,500 to eliminate the upfront cost of home energy upgrades, which customers will then repay over 10 years on their electric bill. Their energy savings from the renovations will cover most of the cost of the loan. The Rural Star and Loan Star programs in this bill will boost demand for energy efficient products, materials, and construction and installation services that are made in America. More than 90% of these products and materials, such as caulking, insulation, HVAC systems, hot water heaters, sealant, windows, doors other structural materials, are made in the USA.

Standing up for American Steel at the International Trade Commission

On Tuesday, Rep. Dahlkemper testified before the U.S. International Trade Commission (USITC) in support of the domestic seamless pipe industry and its workers, including two steel manufacturers from Pennsylvania: TMK IPSCO in Ambridge and U.S. Steel. With V&M Star L.P. of Youngstown, Ohio, and United Steelworkers, the petitioners are seeking antidumping and countervailing duty relief on certain seamless pipe from China. Please click here for more information about the testimony before the USITC.