July 08, 2009

With Record Manufacturing Job Losses in NYS, Gillibrand Unveils Plan to Help Manufacturers Transition to Clean Energy Production for Long-Term Economic Strength

More Than 160,000 New York Manufacturing Jobs Lost Since 2001

Washington, D.C. - New York has lost more than 160,000 manufacturing jobs since 2001, or nearly one-quarter of its manufacturing base. To help New York's manufactures get back on track immediately and to strengthen them for the long term, U.S. Senator Kirsten Gillibrand, a member of the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee, today unveiled her plan to help small and mid-sized businesses afford health care, open and expand new markets, and transition to clean energy production that will power New York and the country for decades to come.

"It's no secret that manufacturing has been struggling in New York and throughout the country," Senator Gillibrand said. "New York's manufacturers powered us through the 20th century, but have been among those hardest hit by these difficult economic times. We cannot rebuild our economy without our manufacturers. We need to get New York's small and mid-sized businesses back on track today, and harness the power of our manufacturing tradition to rebuild and fuel the new economy. My plan will help power our economy through the 21st century - creating thousands of new, good-paying jobs right here in New York."

Every corner of New York State has been crippled by manufacturing job loss. In fact, 52 of New York's 62 counties show significant loss of manufacturing jobs since 2001, with the rest only showing short-term, unsustainable gains.

According to Senator Gillibrand's report, every corner of New York has shed manufacturing jobs since the start of the new century.

READ Senator Gillibrand's new report on New York's manufacturing jobs.

  • New York City lost 58,507 manufacturing jobs from 2001 to 2008. However, in the past ten years, 2,385 companies have benefited as a result of the MEP program, including retaining and creating new jobs.
  • Western New York lost 23,627 manufacturing jobs from 2001 to 2008. However, in the past ten years, 1,583 companies have benefited as a result of the MEP program, including retaining and creating new jobs.
  • The Rochester-Finger Lakes Region lost 26,769 manufacturing jobs from 2001 to 2008. However, in the past ten years, 1,329 companies have benefited as a result of the MEP program, including retaining and creating new jobs.
  • Central New York lost 14,140 manufacturing jobs from 2001 to 2008. However, in the past ten years, 1,333 companies have benefited as a result of the MEP program, including retaining and creating new jobs.
  • The Southern Tier lost 6,332 manufacturing jobs from 2001 to 2008. However, in the past ten years, 590 companies have benefited as a result of the MEP program, including retaining and creating new jobs.
  • The Capital Region lost 7,367 manufacturing jobs from 2001 to 2008. However, in the past ten years, 771 companies have benefited as a result of the MEP program, including retaining and creating new jobs.
  • The North Country lost 3,236 manufacturing jobs from 2001 to 2008. However, in the past ten years, 395 companies have benefited as a result of the MEP program, including retaining and creating new jobs.
  • The Hudson Valley lost 6,791 manufacturing jobs from 2001 to 2008. However, in the past ten years, 626 companies have benefited as a result of the MEP program, including retaining and creating new jobs.
  • Long Island lost 16,841 manufacturing jobs from 2001 to 2008. However, in the past ten years, 867 companies have benefited as a result of the MEP program, including retaining and creating new jobs.

To help New York's small and medium-sized businesses get back on track now and transition New York's manufactures to be the clean energy producers that will fuel New York's economy for the long term, Senator Gillibrand unveiled her plan:

1.      Make Health Care Affordable for Small Businesses and the Self-Employed. More than half of America's uninsured work for small businesses or are self employed. Senator Gillibrand is pushing the Small Business Health Options Program (SHOP) Act. This legislation would make health care affordable by allowing small businesses to buy into an insurance pool with other businesses - reducing costs for all by spreading out risk. The SHOP Act would also offer tax credits for small businesses and the self-employed. Businesses with less than 50 employees would receive a tax credit of $1,000 for each insured employee -- $2,000 per family. For the self employed, the tax credit would be $1,800 for individuals and $3,600 for families.

2.      Upgrade Rail Infrastructure to Help Businesses Connect to New Markets, Cut Costs, Move Goods Faster, Easier and Cleaner. New York has over 1,200 miles of short-line railroads - connecting manufacturers and communities to America's rail system and business hubs. To incentivize upgrades to New York's short-line railroads so more New York businesses can take advantage of them, Senator Gillibrand is cosponsoring bipartisan legislation that will increase the Short Line Railroad Rehabilitation Tax Credit from $3,500 to $4,500 and extend these tax credits through 2013.

Freight rail helps cut emissions, reduces highway congestion and saves businesses money. In fact, one freight train can take upwards of 300 trucks off New York's highways. And one gallon of gasoline can move one ton of freight from Buffalo to New York City. They help attract new businesses to New York and help existing manufacturers move their products to larger markets. For every $1 invested by the federal government to maintain short line freight rails, these tax credits would leverage $2 in private investments, which are set to expire at the end of this year. By expanding and extending these tax credits, Senator Gillibrand is incentivizing upgrades to our rail infrastructure so more businesses can use short line railroads to move goods and services to new markets, and compete and succeed in the economy.

3.      Transition New York Manufacturers To Clean Energy Production. Senator Gillibrand is working with Senator Sherrod Brown (D-OH) to introduce the Investments for Manufacturing Progress and Clean Technology (IMPACT) Act this week. The legislation would invest $30 billion for states to establish a Manufacturing Revolving Loan Fund - helping small and medium-sized businesses retool, expand or establish homegrown clean energy manufacturing operation. The loans would help existing manufacturers get the capital they need to transition to clean energy production, and help get new businesses off the ground.

The IMPACT Act  would also invest $1.5 billion over five years for the Manufacturing Extension Partnership (MEP) - helping manufacturers access clean energy markets and transition to new, innovative, clean energy manufacturing technologies. This would increase the federal share of MEP funding from one-third to one-half.

Between 2000 and 2003 in New York, a network of 10 independent non-profit organizations overseen by NYSTAR - the New York State Foundation for Science, Technology and Innovation - led MEP programs that helped New York manufacturers create or save 4,154 jobs, and earn $587 million in new revenue, cost savings and capital investments.

America imports 70 percent of our clean energy systems and components. America cannot afford to keep importing foreign fossil fuels, and cannot afford to let other countries take the lead in the new clean energy economy. The IMPACT Act would help make New York a leader in the industry, and create thousands of new jobs for the state.

4.      Arm MEP With Resources to Make New York Leader in New Energy Economy. The federal Manufacturing Extension Partnership (MEP) Program helps many manufacturers to improve their companies. Senator Gillibrand said the MEP Program has helped 9,881 manufacturing companies in New York over the last ten years and argued that the program is needed now more than ever. Senator Gillibrand is calling for $131.8 million to fully fund the federal MEP program as part of the America COMPETES Act to make sure the program has the resources it needs to transition more New York manufacturers to clean energy production, and attract new clean energy manufactures to New York.


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