AIM/TRIM issue common sense breakdown of vetoed bills

After months of study, Missourians now have the opportunity to see for themselves the real impact of a series of bills passed by the Missouri General Assembly near the end of its 2014 legislative session. Associated Industries of Missouri and the Taxpayers Research Institute of Missouri have performed a “reality check” on the true cost and benefit of seven bills vetoed by Governor Nixon less than a month after the end of the regular legislative session. At the time of his veto, Nixon estimated that the bills would take more than $425 million out of the state budget, and more than $351 million dollars away from local tax collections. He then embarked on a series of trips around the state to share his views of the “damage” these tax bills would do to local government services. He also withheld hundreds of millions of dollars in state support for local school districts and other state programs in anticipation of an override

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Senator Blunt introduces pro-growth, pro-jobs amendments

WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Senator Roy Blunt (Mo.) introduced two pro-growth, pro-jobs amendments to S. 2569 today in order to help hire more American veterans and protect low and middle-class families from a costly and job-destroying carbon tax. “These amendments would help create more good-paying jobs and economic opportunities for American veterans, as well as low and middle-class families in Missouri and nationwide,” Blunt said. “If Democrats were really serious about helping the Americans who are struggling to find work and make ends meet, they would join Republicans in taking action on these common-sense, job-creating measures.” Wednesday, Blunt spoke at the Republican Leadership Stakeout and called on U.S. Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (Nev.) to allow an open debate and amendment process on bipartisan bills that are currently stalled in the U.S. Senate. Click here to watch his remarks.In April 2014, Blunt filed the “Hire More Heroes Act” as a standalone bill and as an amendment to the unemployment insurance

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NAM: Make your voice heard during August Recess.

Members of the U.S. House and Senate are never more accessible to manufacturers than during the August recess, when they leave Washington behind for their home districts. The NAM urges manufacturers to use the month-long recess from August 4 through September 8 to remind lawmakers about the NAM’s Growth Agenda and the importance of manufacturing’s role in the economy. It is important to focus your August outreach efforts on two critical issues that impact manufacturing competitiveness and job creation: Embrace Responsible and Reasonable Regulations—Manufacturers are committed to protecting the environment through greater sustainability, increased energy efficiency and conservation, and reduced emissions. Over the past three decades, the manufacturing sector has greatly decreased its environmental footprint while improving productivity. However, these advances have not been without cost. With some of the largest, most expensive new regulations in history on the immediate horizon, manufacturers need a balanced approach to environmental policies, not overly restrictive regulations that unnecessarily slow growth, increase costs and

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Missouri Transportation and Development Council endorses Amendment 7

Missouri, the crossroad of America, is at a critical crossroad on it how it should fund its roads. As an organization of businesses that has long taken interest in the transportation infrastructure of Missouri, the Missouri Transportation and Development Council (MTD) endorses the latest effort to keep commerce moving in our state with Amendment 7 on the August ballot. Since 1951, our organization has foreseen the need for adequate funding for not only the state’s interstate highways, but for the transportation system of the state as a whole; from state roads to freight rail traffic, air and passenger travel. We have backed MoDOT’s efforts to do the most with the least amount of funding through the years. We have seen MoDOT’s budget drastically drop from $1.3 billion in 2009 to a projected $325 million by 2017. And all the while, our bridges and overpasses continue to deteriorate. I-70 and I-44 are outdated, crowded and crumbling. Maintenance is all that MoDOT

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Aviation Technical Services formally opens KC facility and signs new contracts

ATS Opens Remodeled Facility with Missouri Governor, Dignitaries, Customers and Employees Kansas City, Missouri (July 24, 2014) ― Aviation Technical Services (ATS) formally opened its newly‐renovated 607,000‐square‐foot MRO complex at Kansas City International Airport (MCI) with a ribbon‐cutting and positive customer news Thursday. Associated Industries of Missouri was proud to support legislation, passed by this year’s state legislature, that removed the sunset date from the state sales tax exemption on all parts used at airplane maintenance facilities, a key component to the expansion of services at ATS. The private celebration welcomed Missouri Governor Jay Nixon, Airport Director Mark VanLoh, other community leaders, invited guests, employees and their family members and business partners. Two such business partners, Hawaiian Airlines and Air Canada, officially committed programs to the ATS‐KC facility. Hawaiian’s agreement for Boeing 767 heavy maintenance was formally signed earlier this week.  This contract initially involves (2) nose‐to‐tail heavy checks beginning in September 2014 and has the opportunity to turn into a longer term,

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NAM’s Timmons: Congress must reauthorize Ex-Im to support American competitiveness

NAM President and CEO Jay Timmons writes in an ideaslaboratory.com (7/25) opinion piece that he, along with “thousands of businesses of all sizes in congressional districts across the nation can’t understand why Washington is threatening to let Ex-Im’s charter expire.” Timmons states that the Bank has helped American businesses compete with foreign companies, and that over 865 businesses and associations attested to the importance of the Bank in a letter to Congress last week. “It’s nonsensical that manufacturers in America…would lose out to foreign competitors simply because other countries are willing to offer better financing terms,” writes Timmons. He emphasizes that without the Bank, some manufacturers “have no shot at competing” against their foreign competition. “America’s manufacturers can’t afford to forfeit a critical tool that supports their competitiveness,” he says. Timmons calls shutting down the Bank “a gift to foreign producers” and would reduce exports, and manufacturing jobs here in the US. He closes saying, “Manufacturers urge Congress to act

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President signs the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act

(An update from the National Association of Manufacturers) Tuesday, President Obama signed the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act, which was passed by the House earlier in July and the Senate last month. This key piece of legislation replaces the Workforce Investment Act and makes the Federal workforce system more responsive to employer needs. It embraces the NAM goals of prioritizing industry-recognized credentials, reducing the number of prescriptive workforce training programs and streamlining the workforce training system. The legislation is also an example of how bi-partisan compromise can be achieved and proof that our legislative process can work. In coordination with the signing ceremony, Vice-President Biden released a report on Workforce Programs titled, “Ready to Work: Job-Driven Training and American Opportunity.” The report was requested by the President in the State of the Union address earlier this year to evaluate all Federal workforce training programs to determine how to “…connect more ready-to-work Americans with ready-to-be-filled jobs” The report can be found here.

Partnership for a Better Energy Future lays out concerns in letter to EPA administrator

Monday evening, the National Association of Manufacturers, acting on behalf of the Partnership for a Better Energy Future, sent a letter to EPA Administrator Gina McCarthy laying out five high-level concerns with the proposed carbon standards for existing power plants. Associated Industries of Missouri is a member of the Partnership. The letter makes the following requests to EPA: Go back to the drawing board on the proposed rule At a minimum, expand the public outreach beyond the four scheduled hearings and extend the comment deadline by 60 days The five concerns expressed in the letter: The rule will increase electricity prices and negatively impact the economy The method for calculating the proposed standards exceed EPA’s statutory authority EPA has failed to demonstrate that the targets and “building blocks” are technologically achievable The rule sets bad precedent for future regulation of other sectors There has been inadequate public engagement and the agency is adhering to a rushed and arbitrary rulemaking deadline Read

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Senate tax practices committee holds first hearing

The Senate interim committee appointed to look into the treatment of taxpayers by the Missouri Department of Revenue got an earful Thursday from taxpayers – and no response from the agency or Governor Jay Nixon’s office. The official purpose of the Committee: “To investigate the process and policy used by the Missouri Department of Revenue to interpret, enact and enforce tax statutes and uncover potential conflicts or inconsistencies in the administration of tax law.” Committee Chairman Senator Will Kraus was joined by fellow Committee members Senator Bob Dixon, Senator Ed Emery and Senator Paul LeVota. Associated Industries of Missouri President Ray McCarty was on hand to monitor the discussion. Leading off testimony were representatives from Ace ImageWear, a company that provides uniform, linen and other services in the Kansas City area, regarding sales tax exemptions for items used in their business. Company spokesmen said the company provides linen services, uniform services and other services by providing clean items for customers,

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Ex-Im Bank’s survival said to be “under assault”

The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel (7/18, Gilbert, Barrett) reports that the Export-Import Bank’s “survival is under assault” despite support from business groups likes the NAM. Other supporters of the Bank like Sen. Tammy Baldwin think that “getting rid of the bank because it intervenes in the free market ignores the reality of global commerce.” The uncertainty about the Bank’s reauthorization is making local manufacturers uneasy as it will significantly impact their business. Landrieu, Boustany Say Ex-Im Bank Is “Critical” To Louisiana’s Economy. The New Orleans Times-Picayune(7/18, Alpert) reports that Sen. Mary Landrieu and Rep. Charles Boustany support legislation to reauthorize the Bank, promoting it as a “Louisiana jobs producer.” Landrieu “doesn’t understand how anyone in the Louisiana delegation could oppose the bank’s reauthorization,” and they both agree that the bank, which has supported over $1 billion worth of Louisiana exports and operated at a profit for the last five years, could not be replaced by a private sector bank.