House committee approves Burns’ ‘American Made Jobs Plan’ to bring back manufacturing

HARRISBURG, March 20 – The PA House State Government Committee has reported out two bills introduced by state Rep. Frank Burns designed to benefit U.S. workers by introducing the return of long-lost domestic manufacturing and steel jobs.

Burns, D-Cambria, said his “American Made Jobs Plan” is a package designed to end our economy’s heavy reliance on China and other countries and reverse decades of unfair trade policies, driven by corporate greed and special interests, that have helped wipe out the middle class in Pennsylvania and Cambria County.

“For too many years, we’ve been fed the lie – by big-monied interests and their elected enablers – that trade pacts which stripped millions of jobs from our manufacturing base would be good economic policy in the long run,” Burns said. “But, when I look around, I sure don’t see it. Either I need a bigger magnifying glass, or we need to do something really big to reverse this trend.”

In a nutshell, Burn’s legislation seeks to restore manufacturing jobs by requiring use of U.S.-made steel in construction or repair of all underground pipelines and in any private project that receives taxpayer funding.

“This is one way to bring back good-paying, family-sustaining jobs – by leveling the playing field for hardworking people and industries that were economically steamrolled by unfair competition,” said Burns, co-chairman of the state House Steel Caucus. “It’s time to take off the gloves and fight bare-knuckled for the forgotten, which I’m not afraid to do.

“With tens of thousands of people in PA unemployed, we cannot afford to wait to take action,” Burns said. “Since 2001 our state has lost more than 300,000 manufacturing jobs to corporate profitability and one-way trade deals, a statistic that should sicken any American. It’s well past time for this legislature to take bold, decisive action to bring those jobs back, to rebuild the middle class, and to bring PA back as an industrial powerhouse.”

Both bills now move to the full House for consideration.