Kirsten Gillibrand United States Senator for New York

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Made In America Advanced Manufacturing

Made In America Advanced Manufacturing

America was built on New York manufacturing. These businesses and workers powered us through the 20th century. But today our manufacturers are among those hit hardest by the difficult economy. From bad trade deals and misguided economic policies that closed down our factories and sent American jobs overseas, New York alone has lost hundreds of thousands of manufacturing jobs, and continues to lose these jobs today.

But some sectors within the manufacturing industry are thriving: high-tech and advanced manufacturing, including computer and electronics have seen employment numbers grow by 9 percent from 2004 to 2008.

Senator Gillibrand believes in the potential that high-tech and advanced manufacturing have for our economy. And with New York’s manufacturing know-how, groundbreaking research and innovation, and highly skilled workforce, New York is positioned better than any state or any country to lead in these industries. 

1. Made In America Grants

Senator Gillibrand authored the Made In America block grant program – legislation to establish a competitive grant program providing new resources and strategies to small and medium-sized manufacturers in communities with high unemployment. These grants will help manufacturers retool their operations, and retrain their workforce for advanced manufacturing, such as clean energy, computer technology, aerospace and biotechnology. 

States and local governments that have experienced a seasonally adjusted unemployment rate of at least 10 percent for any six consecutive months from January 1, 2007 through December 31, 2010, or have experienced a cumulative decline in employment in manufacturing of 15 percent or more during that time period would be eligible. 

Made In America grants could be used for the following purposes:

  • Retooling or retrofitting plants, including equipment, facilities or infrastructure
  • Diversifying business plans to advance the production of clean energy, energy efficiency, high technology, or other advanced products or components
  • Improving the energy efficiency of a manufacturing facility
  • Retraining employees with new skills necessary to operate new or advanced manufacturing equipment or sustain or improve the processes of a manufacturer
  • On-the-job training for new employees
  • Providing capital and technical expertise to expand export opportunities 

2. New Capital for Manufacturers

Senator Gillibrand is working to pass the Security in Energy and Manufacturing (SEAM) Act, legislation that would help cut costs on domestic manufacturing of clean energy technology by providing companies a tax credit and grants.

The Advanced Energy Manufacturing Tax Credit currently provides a 30 percent credit for domestic companies for investments in new, expanded, or reequipped clean energy manufacturing projects.

The program is aimed at building capacity to meet this new and growing source of demand. Qualifying facilities manufacture a wide range of clean energy products, including wind turbines, solar panels, hybrid vehicle systems, carbon capture and sequestration systems, and biofuel refinery components, among others.

Through this credit, $2.3 billion in federal funds leveraged more than $5.4 billion of private investment that supported the creation of an estimated 17,000 jobs, plus 41,000 jobs through matching private investment.

The SEAM Act would extend the program and allow for grants in lieu of tax credits. This would enable the program to reach additional companies that would otherwise be unable to utilize the program, specifically new companies that do not yet have tax liabilities or companies struggling to access credit. Both the tax credit and grant would remain at 30 percent of the cost of the project.

The SEAM Act also adjusts the selection criteria to give higher priority to facilities that manufacture, rather than assemble, goods and components in the U.S.

The Department of Energy (DOE) states that the program was more than three times oversubscribed. Nationwide, DOE deemed 418 projects eligible, which amounts to $5.8 billion in unfunded eligible applications. These manufacturers are waiting in the pipeline, ready to break ground soon with the proper funding. 

The SEAM Act also helps restore American's manufacturing base. By giving priority to U.S. production, the bill would ensure that our U.S. manufacturing base produces all parts in the clean energy supply chain. As clean energy becomes one of the world's largest industries, forecasted at over $2 trillion annually, clean energy manufacturing provides a significant opportunity for the U.S. to restore its manufacturing base and create good-paying jobs domestically. 

3. Attracting New Private Investment into Manufacturing Communities

To leverage more private investment into manufacturers in some of New York’s hardest hit communities, Senator Gillibrand is pushing the New Markets Tax Credit Extension Act. The legislation would extend the New Markets Tax Credit program, which provides a 39 percent tax credit for Community Development Entities (CDEs) to help leverage additional private investments into local businesses. 

The New Markets program generated almost $50 billion in financing to businesses in some of the most economically distressed communities. From 2003 to 2009, every publically invested dollar leveraged $12 in private capital in return. 155 businesses in New York have benefited from over $1.42 billion in New Market Tax Credits.

Since 2007, the tax credit has been extended on a year-to-year basis, making it difficult for local communities to plan projects, and use it to leverage additional private investment into new business ventures to help create jobs and revitalize communities.