A bipartisan amendment written by Rep. Bruce Braley (IA-01) and Republican Rep. Lynn Westmoreland (GA-03) that would remove burdensome government regulations on refrigerated deli-style display cases that threaten the future of their manufacture in the United States was adopted by the US House today.
Lennox Industries, Inc., which makes the deli-style display cases covered by the regulation, has a manufacturing facility in Marshalltown, Iowa, that employs about 1,000 people. The adoption of the amendment will help protect Iowa manufacturing jobs.
"When government regulations defy common sense and put jobs at risk, it's time for a change," Braley said. "With their regulation, the Department of Energy has effectively outlawed refrigerated display cases found in grocery stores and delis. The regulation is unfair and harmful to manufacturing in Iowa and America.
"The bipartisan amendment adopted today will reverse this misguided regulation and protect Iowa jobs. I'm proud to work across the aisle with Representative Westmoreland to pass this common sense solution that won support from both parties."
The problem remedied by the amendment stems from the federal government's interpretation of a 2005 law that increases energy efficiency standards for appliances. The Department of Energy believed it was required by the law to include refrigerated deli display cases in the same category as standard refrigerators. However, the inherent design of such display cases makes it impossible for the equipment to reach the minimum efficiency standards set forth for refrigerators in the 2005 law, effectively outlawing their manufacture in the United States.
Braley and Westmoreland's Better Use of Refrigerator Regulations Amendment creates a new energy efficiency category for refrigerated deli-style display cases, effectively reversing the regulation and safeguarding the product's continued manufacture in Marshalltown and other locations in the US.
The amendment was added to HR 4480, the Strategic Energy Production Act of 2012, by a unanimous, bipartisan voice vote.