Spending Daily | March 22, 2013
Airlines Trade Group to FAA: Budget Cuts Can Be Made “Without Major Furloughs”
The Wall Street Journal reports, “Planned furloughs of air-traffic controllers that could cause major disruptions in air travel are sparking a dispute between the Federal Aviation Administration and airlines over how much discretion the agency has in making its sequester cuts. The FAA, which employs virtually all of the country’s civilian air-traffic controllers, says the furloughs are unavoidable under mandatory federal budget cuts, and it predicts flights could be delayed by up to 90 minutes at busy airports as a result. The airline industry’s leading trade group, Airlines for America, has sent a legal memo to federal officials arguing that the FAA can make the cuts without major furloughs. Representatives of several major airlines said they back the trade group’s position, but declined to comment further. Two airline officials, who wouldn’t be named, said in interviews they think the FAA is making fliers political pawns, as the Obama administration looks to use public backlash over flight delays to force Republicans into a budget deal.”
Senate Set to Pass First Budget in Four Years
The Hill reports, “The Democrat-controlled Senate appears set to approve its first budget resolution in four years. Votes on amendments to the budget began Thursday night, with a final vote set for late Friday or early Saturday. In a sign of caucus unity, only one Democrat broke ranks to support a key GOP motion on Thursday night. The motion simply called for Democrats to rewrite their budget so that it balanced within ten years.”
Senate Dems Oppose GOP Request to Rewrite Budget That Balances
According to The Hill, “Senate Democrats stuck together on Thursday night to oppose a GOP floor motion that would have required them to rewrite their budget to make it balance. The motion was defeated on a 46 to 53 vote. Sen. Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.) joined with the united Republican conference to support it. … The Senate Democratic budget does not project a balance, despite raising $975 billion in taxes and cutting an equal amount of spending using a baseline favored by Democrats.”
“’Vote-a-rama’: The Senate Budget Votes That Tell The Tale”
POLITICO reports, “A big chunk of the upcoming Senate budget vote-a-rama will be a waste of time — like votes on senators’ pet causes or generic partisan issues. But there’s some good news buried in the dozens of amendments that are coming across the Senate floor between now and Friday: A handful of them will matter. None of them will actually become law, but some will test support for important bills to come later this year or beyond. Others could define possible 2016 candidates. And others still could tell President Barack Obama whether he’s got a shot at a grand bargain.” Read more…
Ryan Budget Voted Down in Senate
The Hill reports, “The Senate rejected House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan’s (R-Wis.) budget Thursday night. Senate Budget Committee Chairwoman Patty Murray (D-Wash.) forced Senate Republicans to vote on Paul’s plan through an amendment she offered, which failed on a 40-59 vote. … ‘Enough is enough. Republicans received a vote on their extreme proposal; now that it has failed once more, it’s time for Republicans to work with Democrats to enact a budget that reflects our values of fairness and opportunity for all,’ House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) said after the vote. … Murray’s budget includes $100 billion in stimulus funding that she says would help boost economic growth and workforce training. Her plan has come under heavy fire from Republicans who say it over-estimates the extent to which it would reduce the deficit, and it raises nearly $1 trillion in new taxes. Democrats say their budget cuts thedeficit by $1.85 trillion over ten years through an equal amount of spending cuts and new revenue, but the GOP has said that because it assumes the sequester will not happen, the amount of deficit reduction is closer to $700 billion.”
Lawmakers Cancelling Recess Trips in Light of Cuts
The New York Times reports, “Official travel abroad by members of Congress — trips known universally on Capitol Hill by the shorthand term ‘codels’ — has always been something of a sensitive topic. Critics deride the Congressional delegations as high-flying, taxpayer-financed junkets, while members and their staffs vigorously defend them as critical fact-finding and research trips. Now, the long jet-setting tradition of Congressional recesses just got grounded by the same $85 billion across-the-board budget cuts, which have also canceledWhite House tours and lengthened airport lines and have some federal employees receiving furlough notices.. Normally, Congress’s coming two-week break would be the perfect time for dozens of lawmakers to scurry overseas. But in this time of heightened fiscal discipline, an increasing number of members are eschewing such trips and returning home, to spend the time in their districts with their families and constituents.
Defense Furloughs Delayed
The Associated Press reports, “The Defense Department will delay furlough notices for its civilian employees for about two weeks while officials analyze the impact of a new spending bill on planned budget cuts, the Pentagon said Thursday. The delay comes as defense officials continue to wrangle over how many civilians should be exempt from the unpaid leave requirement, including how much of the U.S. intelligence community should be excluded. A senior defense official said Thursday that as much as 10 percent of the department’s 800,000 civilian workers overall could be exempt from the furloughs. The official said the exact numbers were still being worked out.”
Defense Analysts Warn Pentagon to Start Planning Cuts
Reuters reports, “The Pentagon needs to stop stalling and start figuring out how to cut its budget by $50 billion annually for the foreseeable future in a way thatpreserves national security, defense analysts from across the political spectrum said on Thursday. Warning that the department appeared to be clinging to the hope that Congress and the White House would eventually reverse the cuts, the analysts said the Pentagon needed to focus on factors that drive long-term cost growth, including overhead, compensation and acquisition. … The Pentagon is scrambling to reduce spending by $46 billion this fiscal year after a law requiring $500 billion in defense spending cuts over the next decade took effect on March 1. The cuts came as the department was implementing a $487 billion cut over the same period that went into force last year. … Congress alleviated some of those issues on Thursday when it approved funding for the government for the rest of the year.”
“Pentagon handed out $419 million in improper travel reimbursements last year”
According to The Washington Guardian, “During the recent sequester debate, the Pentagon was among the most vocal federal agencies in describing the potential impact of the automatic spending cuts that took effect March 1. It has not been as vocal, however, about another priority: complying with a law Congress passed three years ago to trim wasteful government spending. While making improvements in some spending areas, the Defense Department was singled out this week for failing to trim unnecessary travel reimbursements. In fact, the Pentagon’s internal watchdog concluded that wasteful travel spending actually grew last year to a total of $419.3 million, accounting for roughly five percent of the Pentagon’s mammoth $8.4 billion travel budget.”
Tax Reform Tied Up in Senate Amid Deficit Debate
The Hill reported, “Prospects for tax reform in Congress are in limbo because of a fight over whether the effort should raise revenue to reduce the deficit. The dispute has held action by the Senate Finance Committee, which has not begun preliminary work on overhauling the tax code. Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) is undecided whether it should proceed if Republicans do not agree up front on how much revenue should go to deficit reduction. … A Senate Democratic aide noted that while members of the Finance panel are well-versed on policy options, other members of the caucus need in-depth briefings. The Senate Finance Committee held its first issue meeting on tax reform Thursday, in which members discussed papers laying out policy options. The panel plans to hold these meetings regularly on Thursdays. … The biggest obstacle to tax reform is that both parties are at a stalemate on the question of what to do with new revenues.”
Insurance Companies Warn of Sharp Increase in Premiums
The Wall Street Journal reports, “Health insurers are privately warning brokers that premiums for many individuals and small businesses could increase sharply next year because of the health-care overhaul law, with the nation’s biggest firm projecting that rates could more than double for some consumers buyingtheir own plans. The projections, made in sessions with brokers and agents,provide some of the most concrete evidence yet of how much insurance companies might increase prices when major provisions of the law kick in next year—a subject of rigorous debate. … The gulf between the pricing talk from some insurers and the government projections suggests how complicated the law’s effects will be. Carriers will be filing proposed prices with regulators over the next few months. Part of the murkiness stems from the role of government subsidies. Federal subsidies under the health law will help lower-income consumers defray costs, but they are generally not included in insurers’ premium projections. Many consumerswill be getting more generous plans because of new requirements in the law.
Cyprus Given Monday Deadline for Bailout Deal
The Washington Post reports, “The euro currency union, a centerpiece of Europe’s efforts to knit its far-flung nations into a coherent whole, edged toward a rupture Thursday when the region’s central bank said it was ready to pull the plug on Cyprus.The stark ultimatum came in a terse statement Thursday from the European Central Bank’s governing board, which said that on Monday it would cut off the flow of euros to Cyprus’s struggling banks unless the country’s leaders reach agreement with the International Monetary Fund and other European nations on the terms of a $20.5 billion bailout to save their country from financial disaster. The deadline sent Cypriot leaders scrambling to find fixes, and by Thursday night they were discussing restructuring the nation’s worst-off bank and imposing capital controls that would sharply restrict depositors’ ability to withdraw money, an effort to prevent bank runs. Because Cyprus is small and its banks aren’t so wired into the international system, a failure isn’t likely to trigger the kinds of global problems feared if Greece or another euro nation were to leave the currency union.”
“Senate calls for an end to medical device tax”
The Hill reports, “The Senate on Thursday approved a bipartisan budget amendment calling for the end of a medical device tax enacted as part of President Obama’s healthcare reform bill. … The 2.3 percent tax has proven unpopular since passed in 2010, but was key to ensuring that the Obama health law did not add to the deficit. The budget resolution is not binding, so even if the Senate resolution is reconciled with a competing House version, the device tax would still be in effect.”
As Rumors Swirl Around the Speakers Ouster, Conservatives Need to Remember that the Constitution does not require that the Speaker be an elected Member of Congress, but no non-member has ever been elected to the office. Knowing this, I think it’s time we “Think Outside of the Box” and elect a new speaker from outside of congress…
John Boehner could be in for a fight Thursday when the newly seated House votes for the next speaker, with conservatives grumbling about his leadership and a report surfacing about a supposed plan to challenge him.
The 11-term congressman, who’s endured his share of political turbulence, presumably enters the election with the upper hand. So far, a single viable Republican challenger has not emerged and the rules of the vote tend to work in Boehner’s favor.
But Boehner’s potential troubles were compounded by a late-night flare up with outraged northeast lawmakers over a decision by the speaker to postpone a vote on an aid package for Superstorm Sandy victims.
For the near term, the speaker appears to have weathered those complaints, assuring members in a closed-door meeting Wednesday afternoon they will vote by Jan. 15. Rep. Michael Grimm, R-N.Y., who initially described the postponement as a “betrayal” and threatened to abstain from voting for Boehner, said after the meeting he would back Boehner.
Rep. Peter King, R-N.Y., who earlier lashed out at the GOP leadership in a string of interviews and remarks, said the same.
But a spate of other flare-ups over the past several days and weeks among House Republicans has stoked threats about resistance — or at least some drama — Thursday. Conservatives were already miffed that Boehner, early on in talks over the fiscal crisis, had agreed to new revenue. Boehner suffered another blow two weeks ago when his “Plan B” fiscal bill failed to garner enough Republican backers. But the final fiscal-crisis bill, which arrived from the Senate early Tuesday morning, ultimately garnered thin support from the GOP ranks. While Boehner and 84 other Republicans voted for it, 151 Republicans opposed it — more Democrats than Republicans voted for the bill.
Bankrupting America Marks The “Not-So-Sweet” $16 Trillion National Debt
Today Bankrupting America will be giving away 500 cupcakes on Capitol Hill to commemorate the special moment our national debt surpassed the sweet $16 trillion mark, an unprecedented sum amounting to more than $50,900 for every man, woman and child in the U.S. The “Cupcake Joy” truck will be located at Union Station from 12:00-1:00 p.m. and Federal Center from 1:15-2:00 p.m. handing out free debt-reduction cupcakes.The goal of today’s campaign is to underscore that $16 trillion in debt is nothing to celebrate, and if we continue to punt on tough decisions and put off confronting our spending crisis, our nation will be well on its way to a $17 trillion debt in 2013. Click here to read more about the “Not-So-Sweet” 16 cupcake giveaway.
As Debt Mounts, Congress Punts
The House of Representatives today will vote on a continuing resolution to avoid a government shutdown and temporarily keep the government running for 6 months after the fiscal year ends on Oct. 1. The continuing resolution, which sets spending at an annualized rate of $1.047 trillion, the level agreed upon on August 2011’s debt ceiling deal, would increase spending by $8 billion, a 0.6 percent increase over current-year spending. Public Notice Executive Director Gretchen Hamel issued the following statement:
“Football fans know that you can’t win if all you do is punt. This continuing resolution amounts to another punt by Congress on one of its most basic and important responsibilities—budgeting. Our debt just surpassed the $16 trillion mark—a record high, yet Congress continues to opt for the politically expedient solution rather than the fiscally responsible one. Short-term extensions are not a long-term strategy, but apparently that’s all Washington has to offer. Right now our country is down $16 trillion, and Washington is just looking to run out the clock. That’s not a winning strategy for America. And we can’t afford another losing season.”
Group of Lawmakers Call for End to Foreign Aid to Libya, Egypt
The Hill reports, “A group of House conservatives is calling for foreign aid to Libya and Egypt to be stripped from a six-month federal funding bill set for a vote on Thursday. A handful of lawmakers voiced outrage Wednesday at the Obama administration’s response to the attacks on the U.S. embassies in those countries, and suggested the inclusion of foreign aid could influence their votes. ‘It makes it easier to vote ‘no’ ‘ on the spending bill, freshman Rep. Jeff Landry (R-La.) said at a press event with conservative House Republicans at the Capitol. The House on Thursday plans to vote on a continuing resolution that would extend federal funding through March, preventing a government shutdown before the election or during a lame-duck session of Congress this fall. While conservatives pushed to avoid a shutdown fight, they have also raised alarms about the inclusion of additional welfare funding in the bill.”
“Rich-Poor Gap Widens to Most Since 1967 as Income Falls”
Bloomberg reports, “A census report showing median household income fell last year puts a new focus on the biggest issue of the U.S. Presidential election. And it’s likely to be deployed by both candidates to reinforce their campaign themes. The U.S. Census Bureau figures released yesterday underscored the struggles of American families in a sputtering economic recovery. The report also showed the income gap between rich and poor people grew to the widest in more than 40 years in 2011 as the poverty rate remained at almost a two-decade high … Median household income dropped 1.5 percent last year while the proportion of Americans living in poverty was 15 percent, little changed from 2010. The 46.2 million people living in poverty remained at the highest level in the 53 years since the Census Bureau has been collecting that statistic.”
Farm Bill Continues to Stall
Politico reports that frustration is high on the stalled farm bill, writing, “Indeed, since talks at the Republicans’ national convention in Tampa, the fix has seemed in from the House GOP: no action before the election and a push later to postpone debate into the next Congress. ‘There is no good reason why we didn’t bring this farm bill to the floor,’ Minnesota Rep. Collin Peterson told the crowd. … ‘The groundswell is not out there. It is not happening at the grassroots level,’ Peterson said. … Pam Johnson, the incoming president of the National Corn Growers Association and a sixth generation Iowa farmer with her husband and sons, was miffed. ‘That angers me a lot,’ she told POLITICO. ‘It angers me a lot that now the blame is on farmers. Farmers are home harvesting right now. And they’re doing their business. They assume their representatives are here doing their business. ‘If we ran our business the way they run their business, we’d be out of business.’”
As Dollar Tumbles, New Round of Money Printing Could Be On The Way
Reuters reports, “The dollar tumbled to its lowest level since early May and stock and bond markets curbed some of their resurgent appetite for risk on Thursday as investors waited to see whether the U.S. Federal Reserve announces a new round of money printing. As the dollar suffered from expectations for QE – which would be equal to printing money and diluting the value of the currency – the euro stayed near four-month highs against the U.S. currency, helped by the signs the euro zone may be starting to get on top of its debt troubles. ‘Any good will towards risk assets, probably more so in FX land, could be undone pretty quickly if Ben Bernanke fails to live up to what is expected of him and the Fed board today,’ said Chris Weston, trader at IG Markets. A Reuters poll showed economists raised their bets of a third round of Fed bond buying known as quantitative easing (QE) to 65 percent from 60 percent in August.”
Beware of the Lame Duck
The Hill reports, “The list of major items that Congress must confront in a lame-duck session is getting lengthy, but a few House conservatives say lawmakers should not return to Washington at all after the November elections. With the House and Senate likely to close up the pre-election shop next week, action on expiring tax rates and subsidies, looming spending cuts, Medicare reimbursement rates and a cash-strapped Postal Service must wait until an abbreviated post-election session in November and December. Veteran legislators say the lame-duck session, when the political constraints of the campaign have been lifted, could be a period ripe for deal-making. But it’s exactly that sentiment that frightens lawmakers like freshman Reps. Raul Labrador (R-Idaho) and Jeff Landry (R-La.). ‘I think the decisions we make in the lame-duck session are not wise decisions for America,’ Labrador said. ‘It’s better to have the duly elected representatives, not the people that are in that lame-duck status, not our president who may be in a lame-duck status, not a Harry Reid who will be in a lame-duck status. I want the duly elected representatives making the tough decisions that need to be made.’”
From The Hill:
The U.S. Chamber of Commerce will hold a press conference to “make an announcement” next Thursday “regarding Senator Heller’s reelection campaign,” they announced Friday, a sign they’re likely to endorse the Nevada Republican next week.
The likely endorsement isn’t a surprise — the group has already run ads attacking Rep. Shelley Berkley (D-Nev.). But it comes as a boost for Heller. The group has promised its most robust political program in history this year, and has followed up its other endorsements with major ad buys ranging from a few hundred thousand dollars to more than $1 million in some states.
When asked if that meant an endorsement, a Chamber spokesperson would only say “you’ll have to stay tuned to Thursday’s event.”
The Court Upheld ObamaCare By Ruling That The Mandate Is A Tax, But Democrats Are Pretending It’s Not
Dems ‘Stumbling,’ Scared To Defend Mandate Tax
“The Obama administration played down the tax factor… The healthcare law contains a slew of tax provisions.” (“Supreme Court Ruling Casts Tax Shadow Over U.S. Healthcare Law,” Reuters, 6/29/12)
“…senior administration officials argued that the penalty was not a tax…” (“High Court Gives GOP New Weapon On Taxes,” The Hill, 6/29/12)
· JAY CARNEY: “it’s not a tax…it’s a penalty” (Twitter, @MarkKnoller, 6/29/12)
· DAVID AXELROD: “…what it is is a penalty…” (NBC’s Today Show, 6/29/12)
· STEPHANIE CUTTER: “It’s a penalty.” (“Obama Campaign Spokeswoman Won’t Call Mandate A ‘Tax,’” The Washington Free Beacon, 6/29/12)
“…Democratic leaders were stumbling Thursday when asked about the ruling that the mandate was a tax — an argument that was quickly becoming a GOP talking point.” (“Democrats Take Short Health Care Victory Lap,” Roll Call, 6/29/12)
“The cautious and measured statements from Democratic House and Senate candidates Thursday reflected the unease about renewing a debate that ended badly for the party in November 2010.” (“GOP Sees Down-Ballot Gold In Supreme Court Decision,” Politico, 6/29/12)
· SEN. HARRY REID (D-NV): “…wouldn’t say if he agrees with the Supreme Court ruling that the individual mandate in the health care law is constitutional as a tax.” (“Harry Reid Won’t Say If Obamacare Mandate Is A Tax,” Daily Caller, 6/28/12)
· SEN. CHARLES SCHUMER (D-NY): “…who heads the Democrats’ communication and policy arm, also sidestepped the question.” (“Democrats Take Short Health Care Victory Lap,” Roll Call, 6/29/12)
· REP. CHARLIE RANGEL (D-NY): “‘Do you think it’s a tax in your personal opinion?’ ‘No, it’s a fee for services,’ Rangel replied.” (“Rangel: Obamacare Mandate Is Not A Tax, It’s A ‘Fee For Services,’” Daily Caller, 6/29/12)
SUPREME COURT: ‘A Tax’
SUPREME COURT: “…the shared responsibility payment may… be read as imposing a tax on those who go without insurance.” (Supreme Court Of The United States Syllabus, National Federation Of Independent Business Et Al. V. Sebelius, Secretary Of Health And Human Services, Et Al., 6/28/12)
Federal appeals courts have ruled repeatedly on challenges to the new federal health care law, with conflicting results. Now, it is the Supreme Court’s turn, to sort it all out. It has selected four issues for review, and is expected to release its ruling shortly after 10 a.m. Thursday. An earlier post, found here, discusses the Court’s options. The following post provides a guide on how to read the results when they emerge. The blog will post a link to the full ruling during our Live Blog as soon as it becomes electronically available Thursday. It also will be available on the Court’s website. Traffic on both sites will be heavy.
Supreme Court decisions are issued in a predictable format. What they say, though, is far from predictable. And, with the decision expected Thursday in the health care case, figuring out what it says will be complicated by the near-certainty that the Court will not be unanimous. While an opinion that speaks for a majority — that is, at least five Justices – will be the one that controls the bottom line (what is actually decided), any added opinions may better illuminate or even limit the scope of the outcome or, in fact, help to create multiple outcomes. Indeed, a case can be decided with less than five Justices agreeing on the reasoning, but at least that many have come together on the bottom line. That makes it even more important to find out what is in the separate opinions.
Obviously, then, this can be daunting, even for one who has experience in reading Supreme Court opinions, but especially for someone encountering an opinion for the first time. Fortunately for both regular and new readers, there is almost always a very helpful and much shorter discussion of what has been decided, and it comes out with the opinion itself — indeed, it makes up the opening pages of the document. It is sometimes called the “headnote,” but the Court calls it a “syllabus.” Whatever its name, its function is clear: to describe, in dependably accurate terms, what the Court has decided and how the Justices have voted. (People depend upon it to say what the Court has decided, but lawyers and lower court judges have to rely upon what is in the Justices’ opinions, not the headnote rendition, because the headnote is essentially a tip sheet, not a part of the ruling in any way.)
IMF Will Consider $37 Billion Loan to Greece;
Administration Has Unique Chance to Protect U.S. Tax Dollars
San Francisco, CA – With the International Monetary Fund (IMF) Executive Board scheduled to meet on Thursday to consider a $37 billion loan to Greece as part of the latest $171 billion bailout of that country, Rep. Cathy McMorris Rodgers (R-WA), Vice Chair of the House Republican Conference, called on the Obama Administration today to protect U.S. taxpayer dollars and vote “no” on the agreement. The U.S. has the power to call for a vote at the IMF Executive Board, and all decisions put to a vote require a majority to pass. The U.S. is the largest contributor to the IMF, with $165 billion at stake. The total cost of the Greek bailouts has been estimated at $500 billion.
“At this point, it should be clear that America and the IMF are throwing good money after bad, and the only real solution is for Greece and the European Union to stop their borrowing addiction, instead of papering it over,” said Rep. McMorris Rodgers.” In a letter to Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner last week, she noted that when the Greek bailouts began in May 2010, Greece’s debt-to-GDP ratio was 113 percent. Today, it’s 159 percent. And Greece continues to run enormous deficits. “There should be no deficits in Greece,” said Rep. McMorris Rodgers. “There is no way for Greece to start reducing its debt burden until those deficits stop. It’s just simple math. Of course, that’s equally true for America. We’re not that far behind. Which is why we must start getting serious about protecting U.S. tax dollars and ending the ‘too big to fail to fail’ philosophy. The only thing ‘too big to fail’ is America itself.”
Rep. McMorris Rodgers is the author of HR 2313, which would rescind a $100 billion line of credit to the IMF (created in 2009, and known as the “New Arrangements to Borrow”), and which is being tapped for the European bailouts. The bill has 92 cosponsors.
A compilation of the Congresswoman’s work on this issue can be found here.
New Obama Admin Regulation Jeopardizes 200 Jobs At An Ohio Paper Mill, ‘Will Put 230,000 Jobs At Risk’ Nationwide
LOCAL CONSEQUENCES: 200 Jobs At Ohio Paper Mill
“The city may lose more manufacturing jobs as SMART Papers announced Thursday it’s selling the business or closing up shop. Employees there were given notice the company will begin winding down operations now and will cease operations by the first quarter of next year. At stake are about 200 jobs, as well as tax and utilities revenue for the city.” (“SMART Papers For Sale; 200 Jobs At Risk,” Dayton Daily News, 10/14/11)
“Smart Papers, the Hamilton-based paper maker, said Thursday it has begun winding down operations… new federal pollution rules contributed to the decision…” “The company, which is the last North American manufacturer of premium coated printing papers used for everything from packaging to corporate reports, employs about 200. … uncertainty surrounding new federal pollution rules contributed to the decision, said Tim Needham, Smart Papers’ chairman.” (“Hamilton’s Smart Papers Closing,” The Cincinnati Enquirer, 10/13/11)
- “… as written today, Needham said the rules would require his company to essentially replace its existing boilers. Smart Papers uses electricity from its own generating plant to run the steam boilers, which in turn run the three paper-making machines at the plant. Beyond the cost of new boilers, Needham said, current boiler technology doesn’t exist to comply with the EPA standards. ‘When I talk to prospective purchasers, they say, “Can you guarantee us that we won’t end up spending twice what it costs to buy the business to comply with the rules?” No, I can’t,’ he said.” (“Hamilton’s Smart Papers Closing,” The Cincinnati Enquirer, 10/13/11)
NATIONAL CONSEQUENCES: ‘230,000 Jobs At Risk,’ Including 20,000 ‘Paper Industry Jobs’
“A new study has found that more than 20,000 primary pulp and paper industry jobs and as many as 36 mills around the United States would be at risk of elimination if the Boiler MACT and other air regulations are implemented.” (“Boiler MACT Threatens Industry Jobs,” Pallet Enterprise, 10/1/11)
- “Finch Paper has six boilers, five of which burn natural gas or oil, and another that burns wood waste. All could require investments under the EPA rule, said company spokesman John Brodt. … ‘Given the state of the economy today and the tremendous competitive pressures we face in a global paper industry, this rule would pose serious challenges to our long-term ability to be competitive and provide more than 700 jobs,’ he said.” (“Lawmakers, Companies Fret New Boiler Rules,” The Post-Star [Glens Falls, NY], 8/17/10)
NATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF MANUFACTURERS: “During this critical time in our nation’s economic recovery, manufacturers simply cannot afford another costly and burdensome regulation that will put 230,000 jobs at risk, according to the Council of Industrial Boiler Owners. The Boiler MACT rule will cost manufacturers more than $14 billion in valuable capital that could be spent on investments to create jobs. Manufacturers thank the House members who stood up today for jobs and voted in support of this important legislation to rein in the EPA. We will continue to work to stop the EPA’s aggressive agenda. Today’s vote was another step to protect jobs and competitiveness, and we strongly urge the Senate to act on the EPA Regulatory Relief Act as soon as possible.” (National Association Of Manufacturers, Press Release, 10/13/11)