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President Announces Manufacturing Office, But Agencies Continue Regulatory Assault on Manufacturing

Yesterday, President Obama announced he had established the “White House Office of Manufacturing Policy” to “coordinate the execution of manufacturing programs and the development of manufacturing policy.”

While the mission of the newly established office is certainly welcome, it is important to note that many of the problems facing manufacturers have actually been caused by regulations issued by agencies within President Obama’s control.  In particular, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has issued several regulations that will increase costs for manufacturers, either directly or through electricity rates.   The President seems to be following through on the comments he made during his presidential campaign to bankrupt coal-fired power plants and, in so doing, he is increasing costs for power – a major cost component for most manufacturers and other businesses.

“While we welcome any support for manufacturing, the fact of the matter is there are some tangible steps the Administration could take to help employers in this country by reigning in the bureaucratic regulations that are strangling American industry,” said Ray McCarty, president and CEO of Associated Industries of Missouri (AIM).  “Rather than appointing a new office, as has been done in previous administrations, the President should realize manufacturers need relief from the Administration’s regulatory assault.  If you want to help American employers create jobs, cancel these regulations that are killing our industrial sector,” said McCarty.

Just ten days prior to this most recent announcement, the EPA announced the new Boiler MACT regulations, which met with stiff opposition from manufacturing advocates, including AIM and the National Association of Manufacturers (NAM).

Costs of complying with federal regulations are high.  In fact, the Small Business Administration, Office of Advocacy, in a September 2010 report entitled, “The Impact of Regulatory Costs on Small Firms,” calculated the cost per employee of all federal regulations at $8,086 per employee!  How many more workers would have jobs if companies were able to use this amount to hire additional employees?

Associated Industries of Missouri has served as the “Voice of Missouri Business” since 1919.  If you are a Missouri employer that wants to help us make a difference, please visit www.aimo.com to find out more about joining our effort.

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