August 11,2010

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Baucus Touts New Law to Create American Jobs and Help U.S. Companies Compete

Finance Chair Helped Craft Bipartisan Package to Bolster U.S. Manufacturing Signed into Law Today

Washington, DCSenate Finance Committee Chairman Max Baucus (D-Mont.) lauded the signing today of a bipartisan package of trade provisions designed to make it easier for American employers to import the products they need to manufacture goods and create jobs in the United States.  The new law suspends or reduces tariff duties for imported products that are not domestically available to make it cheaper for U.S. manufacturers and small businesses to make and sell their products.  

“Manufacturers in Montana and across the nation worked closely with us to craft this smart, targeted tariff relief that supports American workers making American products,” Baucus said. “This new law supports good-paying American jobs by making it cheaper and easier for small businesses and manufacturers to make their products here in the U.S. and compete around the world.”

As Chairman of the Finance Committee, with sole jurisdiction over U.S. trade policy, Baucus worked for more than a year with U.S. employers and his colleagues in the House and Senate to craft the legislation, the U.S. Manufacturing Enhancement Act, to meet the needs of American manufacturers and small businesses. The new law, also referred to as the miscellaneous tariff bill, includes both new tariff suspensions and extensions of expired suspensions that make it less costly for U.S. manufacturers to import supplies they need to make their products in the U.S.

For example, Baucus worked closely with the Montana small business, Simms Fishing Products, to ensure the new law reduced tariffs on materials Simms imports to make the wading boots it manufactures in Bozeman, Montana.  By reducing the tariff on the materials Simms needs, the Manufacturing Enhancement Act makes it cheaper for Simms to do business in Montana and continue to support nearly 100 American workers.  President and CEO of Simms Fishing Products K.C. Walsh was in attendance for the bill’s signing ceremony at the White House today. 

The U.S. Manufacturing Enhancement Act, or miscellaneous tariff bill, is a package of bills sponsored by individual members of Congress that is designed to provide relief to U.S. companies that import foreign products not available in the United States.  Before an individual tariff bill is eligible for inclusion in the larger miscellaneous tariff bill, it must meet specific standards determined by Congress.  For example, all individual bills included in the miscellaneous tariff bill must be non-controversial, meaning no member of Congress or domestic producer objects to the bill.  And no individual bill can result in a total estimated annual revenue loss of more than $500,000 to the U.S. Treasury. 

All bills included in the U.S. Manufacturing Enhancement Act underwent a vigorous vetting process by the International Trade Commission, the U.S. Customs and Border Protection Agency and the Department of Commerce to ensure they met all established criteria before they were included in the larger package.

The U.S. Manufacturing Enhancement Act, H.R.4380, was signed into law today after passing the Senate by unanimous consent July 27, and passing the House of Representatives earlier that month.  Legislative text of the law is available on the Finance Committee website at: