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New Infrastructure Proposal Important Step Forward But Falls Short

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Scott Jensen
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WASHINGTON (June 25, 2021) The White House, along with a bipartisan group of U.S. Senators, recently unveiled a new agreement called the Bipartisan Infrastructure Framework. The proposal contains $579 billion in spending on much needed physical infrastructure improvements and a variety of funding mechanisms, unfortunately including the reinstatement of the Superfund taxes on the U.S. business of chemistry.

The American Chemistry Council (ACC) released the following statement from its President and CEO Chris Jahn regarding the new proposal:

“Fixing our nation’s infrastructure is one the country’s biggest challenges and greatest opportunities. It’s a challenge that our industry welcomes since just about every facet of chemical manufacturing depends on a robust infrastructure system. Our industry is also central to providing the resilient and sustainable materials necessary for building a 21stcentury infrastructure that will benefit all Americans.

“Unfortunately the recently announced infrastructure agreement contains a misguided pay-for that will only serve to damage and stifle a bright spot in America’s economy, the U.S. business of chemistry, at a fragile time of economic recovery when our nation can least afford it. We strongly oppose the reinstatement of Superfund chemical taxes, which would target all chemical manufacturers – and some other industries – regardless of whether there is a connection to a Superfund site. ACC member facilities make up less than 2% of Superfund sites, and they are paying for cleanup.

“These taxes would impose new costs on U.S. chemical manufacturers and our customers – companies that produce most manufactured goods. This could lead to a decline in U.S. production capacity in favor of foreign competitors whose goods would bear no similar tax burden as well as increased costs for Americans and potential job losses. An excise tax on basic materials gives an edge to foreign manufacturers in the production of a variety of goods, including many needed to build and improve infrastructure and create clean energy and climate solutions.

 “We commend the Democrats and Republicans for their tenacity and their willingness to listen to each other’s concerns and priorities. Putting together a bipartisan proposal is an important achievement but there is critical work ahead and crucial improvements that must be made to this agreement long before victory can be declared.

 “We call on the Senate and White House to listen to our concerns and urge them to work with us on an infrastructure package that will allow our industry to do what we do best - find solutions and create good paying American jobs.”

American Chemistry Council

The American Chemistry Council (ACC) represents the leading companies engaged in the business of chemistry. ACC members apply the science of chemistry to make innovative products and services that make people's lives better, healthier and safer. ACC is committed to improved environmental, health and safety performance through Responsible Care®; common sense advocacy designed to address major public policy issues; and health and environmental research and product testing. The business of chemistry is a $486 billion enterprise and a key element of the nation's economy. It is among the largest exporters in the nation, accounting for ten percent of all U.S. goods exports. Chemistry companies are among the largest investors in research and development. Safety and security have always been primary concerns of ACC members, and they have intensified their efforts, working closely with government agencies to improve security and to defend against any threat to the nation’s critical infrastructure.

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