Virginia Manufacturers Association Archives - Shopfloor

Manufacturing in State of State Addresses: Virginia

By | Around the States, Economy, Infrastructure, Innovation, Taxation | One Comment

Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell did not use the word “manufacturing” in his State of the State address delivered Wednesday, but he did discuss the state’s business climate, government economic development incentives, and workforce issues, the building blocks of a growth and jobs agenda backed by Virginia’s manufacturers. From the text:

In mid-December we announced our “Opportunity at Work” budget and legislative proposals calling for $54 million in new state funding to help us better compete with Maryland and North Carolina; India and China.

Among the proposals are $25 million for a Virginia Research and Technology Innovation Program; $5 million in funding for Virginia Small Business Financing Authority, to help small businesses gain access to capital; additional funding for Virginia’s growing tourism, wine and film industries, investments in successful workforce development programs, and improvements to industrial sites and enterprise zones….

Government can’t create jobs, but it can create the conditions and incentives that unleash the genius of the entrepreneur. Your approval of this money and legislation will keep us on the winning path.

The “Opportunity at Work” budget announced on Dec. 15 seeks to support the efforts of the newly established Economic Development and Jobs Creation Commission. Among McDonnell’s proposals are:

  • Virginia Research and Technology Innovation Fund (VRTIF) – $25 million
  • Clean Energy Manufacturing Incentive Grant (CEMIG)
  • Virginia Port Tax Incentive – $5 million
  • Refundable Research and Development Tax Credit – $5 million

The December news release included a statement from Brett Vassey, President & CEO of Virginia Manufacturers Association: “Virginia manufactured goods make up over 80% of the Commonwealth’s exports and increasing domestic exports is important to Virginia’s economic recovery.  The Virginia Port Tax Credit incentive proposed by Governor McDonnell will improve the competitiveness of the Port of Virginia and incentivize manufacturers to ship more products through Virginia.”

    Virginia Manufacturers Testify on Kerry-Boxer

    By | Energy, Global Warming, Regulations | One Comment

    The Senate Environment and Public Works Committee today held its second of three hearings on S. 1733, the Clean Energy Jobs and American Power Act, i.e., the Kerry-Boxer bill to restructure the U.S. economy through regulation, subsidy, taxation and more expensive energy.

    Twenty-seven witnesses were scheduled to testify on four separate panels, which seems like too many really to pay close attention to.

    Let us then highlight the testimony of Brett A. Vassey, President & CEO of the Virginia Manufacturers Association, an active member of the National Association of Manufacturers. We appreciated Vassey’s emphasis on Virginia in a global economic climate:

    Federal Government Credit Allocation. This system allows elected political leaders to choose “winners and losers” in the economy. Waxman-Markey directs that every commercial user of energy would be given a certain number of carbon credits, permitting it to emit a specific amount of carbon each year. If a manufacturer exceeds its credits, it has to purchase extra credits from others who do not reach their cap. This system has too much risk for global manufacturers who are making decisions about their future capital investments today. Congress allocating credits is a critical decision because Virginia and other states will lose opportunities to compete and create jobs in the future as long as the threat of this allocation system exists in the public debate.

    And …

    Leakage. Proponents of “cap & trade” believe immediate regulation will force industry to stop using traditional sources of energy. Unfortunately, this position demonstrates a fundamental misunderstanding of global manufacturing today. The truth is “cap & trade” is just another tax on businesses and consumers – regressively so on manufacturing – and it does nothing to stop “leakage” to nations with more favorable conditions. For example, even if Virginia limited all of its CO2 emissions, China’s CO2 emissions growth alone would replace all of Virginia’s CO2 emissions in only 77 days. Virginia is .44% of the global GHG emissions.

    See also Vassey’s Townhall column, “‘Cap’ Industrial Competitiveness and ‘Trade’ Domestic Manufacturing Jobs Abroad.