NAM president Timmons: Regulations hamper growth, ACA makes U.S. firms less competitive

In a front-page article in the Washington Times (12/17, Sands), NAM president and CEO Jay Timmons discusses the impact of federal regulations on job creation and economic growth. Timmons says that manufacturers are longing to invest and create jobs, but are being hindered by regulations and their costs as well as uncertainty from leaders in Washington.

In his remarks to the Times, Timmons highlighted that, “There’s a feeling in this country right now that nobody really knows where we’re headed on tax policy and regulation in particular, and so that tends to dampen the enthusiasm to invest,” noting that there’s billions of dollars available for investment in job-creating activities, but “creators are just kind of afraid to see what’s next.”

Highlighting that with the right policies in place for the long term, the US economic engine could be “purring,” Timmons then expressed that his “hope is that [Congress] will begin to lay out an agenda for growth and opportunity that enables us to rally behind real pro-American policies.” He also noted that CEOs are optimistic but reserved, saying, “I sense when I talk to our CEOs across the country an amazing optimism. They desperately want to invest; they desperately want to hire more people. But they’re still afraid of what Washington might do next.”

The NAM President also expressed that the NAM will continue to advocate policies that promote growth, such as comprehensive immigration reform, renewal of the Export-Import Bank charter, and fighting against burdensome EPA ozone regulations

Timmons: ACA Is Hurting US Manufacturers. As part of the Washington Times (12/18, Howell) “Newsmakers” series, Timmons also discussed a range of other issues, including the impact of the Affordable Care Act. Timmons said that US manufacturers “face headwinds from Obamacare’s mandates and taxes, but the law’s namesake has two more years in the White House and public benefits will be hard to reel back despite the recent midterm election results.”

Timmons said a number of Affordable Care Act provisions, including the insurance mandate and the medical-device tax, are making US firms less competitive. He also criticized the law’s so-called Cadillac tax on top-tier group health plans, stating, “You’re going to see employees that have a lot of tenure at a company — certainly businesses that want to offer the most generous and comprehensive plans possible — that are going to be unfairly burdened and disadvantaged by that tax.”