Thursday, July 18, 2013

Miscellaneous Tariff Bill Filed, Includes Certain Textile, Apparel, and Footwear Products

Today, Ways and Means Chairman Dave Camp (Rep., Mich.), Ranking Member Sander Levin (Dem., Mich.), Trade Subcommittee Chairman Devin Nunes (Rep., Calif.) and Trade Subcommittee Ranking Member Charles Rangel (Dem., N.Y.) announced the re-introduction of H.R. 2708, the U.S. Job Creation and Manufacturing Competitiveness Act of 2013. The bipartisan legislation provides temporary tax relief to help U.S. manufacturers better compete, expand and create jobs. This broadly-supported legislation lowers the cost of manufacturing inputs and some finished products not made or available here in the United States.

The package includes provisions from more than 2,000 bills introduced in the House and Senate during the transparent Miscellaneous Tariff Bill ("MTB") process. There are several provisions of interest to the textile, apparel, and footwear industries, a listing of which is available on the Agathon Associates website by clicking here.

The MTB is bipartisan, bicameral process developed over nearly 30 years and, through improvements made last Congress, is a model of transparency. On March 30, 2012, the Ways and Means Committee and the Senate Finance Committee simultaneously commenced the 112th Congress MTB process and invited Members to introduce temporary miscellaneous tariff bills for consideration and inclusion in the MTB legislation. Consistent with the Committee’s MTB guidance, Members were required to submit public disclosures noting whether the benefits are broadly available and if any Member/spouse has a financial interest. Importantly, the Committee’s guidance required each bill to be non-controversial: if a domestic manufacturer or Member objected to a bill, it was eliminated. The bills were scored by Congressionalk Budget Office ("CBO") and were required to be under $500,000 per year in foregone tariff revenue. Nearly 170 House Members and Senators submitted nearly 2,000 MTBs to be considered through the bipartisan, bicameral MTB process.

To ensure the highest degree of transparency, each of those individual bills was reviewed by, the Ways and Means Committee, the Senate Finance Committee, the independent International Trade Commission and the Department of Commerce, which spearheads the review of the submitted bills for the Administration. The Ways and Means Committee and the Senate Finance Committee also solicited public comments on the submitted bills and, to ensure transparency, posted the comments on the website of each committee.

Bills meeting the requirements of this rigorous process were compiled into a single bill, the U.S. Job Creation and Manufacturing Competitiveness Act of 2013 (H.R. 6727) in the 112th Congress. In the 113th Congress, Members who introduced bills in the 112th Congress were required to submit 113th Congress Disclosure Forms to refresh their disclosure information by April 2, 2013, to have their provisions included in the MTB. No new bills were accepted into the process. Bills whose sponsors did not return in the 113th Congress were required to be adopted by another Member. The bill being reintroduced today reflects H.R. 6727 with a few modifications and technical corrections.

All documents pertaining to the MTB process can be found here on the Ways and Means Committee website.

No comments:

Post a Comment