Here’s a brief look at what actually happened in 2015:
- Congress approved the Fixing America’s Surface Transportation (FAST) Act – the first long-term transportation bill in 17 years. The FAST act also finally extended the Ex-Im Bank’s Charter after it was forced to shut down for the first time in its 80-year history.
- Three new Institutes for Manufacturing Innovation were launched as part of the National Network on Manufacturing Innovation, each focused on a different technology area – photonics, advanced composites, and flexible hybrid electronics.
- The Obama administration launched an effort to double the number of apprenticeships by 2019 and awarded $175 million in grants to 46 public-private partnerships to reach that goal, representing the single largest investment to date to expand U.S. apprenticeships.
- Congress approved Trade Promotion Authority (TPA), paving the way for the successful negotiation of the Trans Pacific Partnership (TPP) agreement.
- Increased Sec. 179 expensing and the R&D tax credit were made permanent; and bonus depreciation was extended for five years.
- Building upon last year’s success to make more progress toward an overhaul of our tax system in the next Congress. AMT will have a seat at the table, including monthly meetings with high-level staff from the House and Senate leadership and tax-writing committees.
- Securing approval of the TPP and restarting stalled negotiations on the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (T-TIP), a trade agreement between the EU and the U.S. AMT is part of a large coalition of organizations and businesses advocating for progress on these agreements.
- Electing GOP candidates to office. AMT is non-partisan. Our #MakeTheVote campaign puts the focus on pro-manufacturing candidates, regardless of party.
With a lame-duck president and a year on Capitol Hill, House Speaker Paul Ryan (R-WI) will control the tone and agenda on Capitol Hill. He continues to emphasize the importance of negotiation and compromise within his own party and across party lines to get a few things done in 2016:
Visit www.AMTonline.org/AdvocateForManufacturing or write me at athomas@AMTonline.org to find out how.