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Notes from Brett: REBUILD Act Will Lead to Jobs, Economic Prosperity and Increased Global Competitiveness


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Having worked at my family's manufacturing business in Bowling Green, I know a strong manufacturing base is key to turning the U.S. economy around and putting Americans back to work. The manufacturing industry, which has seen lengthy periods of job losses, still remains a vital part of the American workforce. With pro-growth policies that create certainty and encourage investment, American manufacturing can regain its competitive edge.

Proudly serving both the House Energy and Commerce (E&C) Committee and the House Committee on Education and the Workforce, my committees have jurisdiction over many of the issues facing the manufacturing industry today.

My father took a huge risk in starting his own manufacturing business. A great deal of the success that it generated came from high-skill job training and Kentucky's affordable energy. Today, many manufacturers aren't as lucky. Many facilities can't offer high-skill on-the-job training, and while natural gas and oil development is lowering the cost of energy, federal regulations are causing rates to increase.

We all agree that we must boost American competitiveness and make it easier for businesses to thrive as we continue to pull ourselves out of an economic recession. Now, we have legislation to do just that.

Recently introduced in the House of Representatives, H.R. 3355, the Reducing Employer Burdens, Unleashing Innovation, and Labor Development (REBUILD) Act of 2013, will strengthen American manufacturing and boost our global competitiveness.

The REBUILD Act is essentially a "top-10 list" that highlights a few key items that could be done to stimulate the manufacturing industry and increase our competitiveness with foreign manufacturers. Provisions included in the bill seek to: redesign workforce training, make the R&D tax credit permanent, achieve comprehensive tax reform, expand access to our federal oil and gas resources, prevent costly and unnecessary EPA regulations, repeal Obamacare, make health insurance portable, renew Trade Promotion Authority, reform export control policy and open up more spectrum to industry to encourage innovation.

Taken together, these policy priorities can ensure that the United States of America is the best place to do business. Big government, crippling regulations and never-ending taxes have made our nation less competitive, and less attractive for businesses abroad who are considering relocating. It's not too late to change that.

I am looking forward to continuing this conversation -- with my colleagues in Washington and with you. I will be spending the upcoming district work periods visiting with business leaders, state officials and employees to take more of your ideas about creating jobs and growing the economy back to Washington. Thank you for being a part of the discussion.

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