Revitalizing American Manufacturing
Protecting our economy and putting citizens back to work is one of my top priorities as a Member of Congress. We need to take an innovative approach to legislation that will grow the economy, reward businesses that keep jobs in the United States, reduce the deficit, and create a level playing field for American workers in the global market.
It is essential we do all we can to strengthen and protect manufacturing, a vital American industry and the foundation of our economy. When manufacturers are given the tools they need to compete in a global marketplace, Americans prosper and our nation becomes stronger. Manufacturing employs 662,000 Ohioans and contributes $99.8 billion to our state’s economy. In our district alone, we have more than 600 manufacturing companies employing nearly 37,000 workers. Most recently, manufacturers have lost on average 74,000 jobs per month, good-paying jobs that pay an average of 20 percent more than typical service sector jobs.
As Co-Chair of both the House Manufacturing Caucus and the House Maker Caucus, I am dedicated to promoting and expanding American manufacturing. I have introduced legislation to establish the position of U.S. Chief Manufacturing Officer in the Executive Office of the President. The U.S. Chief Manufacturing Officer (CMO) will be responsible for coordinating manufacturing-related policies and activities across agencies. The CMO will also develop a national strategy to revitalize the manufacturing sector, spur economic growth, and increase our competitiveness around the globe. Manufacturing is the stabilizing force behind our local and national economy. Without a strong domestic manufacturing base, we will not have a strong economic recovery.
Fair and Balanced Trade
Each and every day, I hear stories from constituents who have been negatively impacted by free trade agreements that ship manufacturing jobs overseas. When plants are closed and friends and family lose a reliable source of income, it has a profound rippling effect that impacts every part of our community. All workers ask for is a level playing field so they can compete on a global scale. However, past trade agreements have not lived up to those standards, and I have consistently opposed them while in Congress. That is why I voted against the Panama, Colombia, and South Korea free trade agreements and the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP). Furthermore, I have testified before the International Trade Commission to voice my concern about predatory behavior of countries such as China that continues to dump steel and aluminum products on our shores at government subsidized below-market prices. It is my belief that hardworking Americans deserve better when it comes to our country’s trade policy.
Future of manufacturing rests with our ability to innovate. We must invest in innovation in manufacturing, so new industries and jobs can flourish. In 2012, a landmark $85 million public-private investment was made in Northeast Ohio. The joint venture, America Makes, was the first major investment to help revitalize American manufacturing by investing in “additive manufacturing” which relies on 3D printers to build components layer-by-layer rather than subtractive processes like milling. More than 20 collaborative research projects are under way and Northeast Ohio is already seeing the benefits with companies coming to Youngstown, Akron, and Cleveland. This investment is helping the U.S. grow its capabilities in additive manufacturing; but unfortunately, experts estimate that American spending only amounts to about one-third of what China is investing in in the same industry.
Education and Workforce Development
There is no doubt we must do more to help educate the next generation for careers in manufacturing. Science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) education helps drive our nation’s economic train and ensures our children will be prepared to lead the world in innovation and entrepreneurship. That is why I have introduced the 21st Century Shop Class Act, which promotes maker education and will help gives students the skills they will need to participate in the exciting jobs that require knowledge of new tools, such as computer programming, engineering analysis, 3-D printing, and robotics. I have also cosponsored the Stepping up to STEM Education Act and the Women and Minorities in STEM Booster Act to help expand and increase the participation in STEM programs. As Americans we have always valued education, and we have had a strong appetite for innovation and entrepreneurship. This is even more important today as the competition for manufacturing and jobs has truly become global. We need educated citizens that will be ready to build a better and brighter future for the United States of America.
More on Manufacturing
Washington, DC – Congressman Tim Ryan (D-OH) will meet with GM CEO Mary Barra tomorrow in Washington, DC to talk about GM Lordstown. Last week, GM announced it would close five of its facilities, including one in Lordstown Ohio, affecting over 14,700 jobs.
Washington, DC – Congressman Tim Ryan (D-OH) today urged President Trump to save General Motors’ Lordstown Assembly plant and reconsider his threat to end federal subsidies for electric cars. GM recently announced it is closing five facilities across North America, laying off over 14,000 employees, including approximately 1,600 from Lordstown, Ohio. In a letter written to the President, Congressman Ryan expressed his concern that eliminating the electric vehicle subsidy as a punitive action against GM could backfire and make it harder to place a new product at the Lordstown plant.
Lordstown, Ohio – Congressman Tim Ryan (OH-13) made the following statement in response to the indefinite shutdown of GM Lordstown in March of 2019, laying off approximately 1,618 employees. This announcement comes after GM eliminated approximately 3,000 jobs at the plant over the last two years.
Washington, DC – Representatives Tim Ryan (D-OH) Tom Reed (R-NY), and Paul Tonko (D-NY) today introduced the Developing Tomorrow’s Engineering and Technical Workforce Act. This legislation would award grants to states educational agencies and local educational agencies to support, develop, and implement formal and informal engineering education programs in elementary schools and secondary schools. It will help provide school districts the resources to incorporate engineering and engineering technology education into their science standards.
Washington, DC – Congressman Tim Ryan today introduced the Prioritizing Our Workers (POWA) Act. This legislation revises the priorities section of the bankruptcy code to place unpaid vested benefits on the same level as bankruptcy attorneys’ fees and other highest-priority claims that a company must pay out in full before paying any other claims. Congressman Donald Norcross (D-NJ) is an original co-sponsor in the House, and Senator Joe Manchin (D-WV) has introduced companion legislation in the Senate.
Washington, DC - Reps. Tim Ryan (D-OH) and Tom Reed (R-NY), along with Sens. Lindsey Graham (R-SC) and Debbie Stabenow (D-MI), have introduced a bipartisan, bicameral resolution to recognize the first Friday in October as “Manufacturing Day.” This year Manufacturing Day will be Friday, October 6.