SOCMA Announces 2009 Legislative Priorities, “First 100 Days” Initiative
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
December 22, 2008
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Assistant Manager, Communications
Washington, DC – The Synthetic Organic Chemical Manufacturers Association (SOCMA) announced today its legislative priorities for the 111th Congress and its “First 100 Days” initiative.
Finalized at its annual grassroots meeting in New York earlier this month, key SOCMA legislative priorities for the 111th Congress are as follows:
- Ensure the continuance of current chemical security regulations under the Chemical Facility Anti-Terrorism Standards without product substitution requirements under the guise of inherently safer technology (IST). “The American chemical manufacturing industry practices the fundamental principles of IST every day,” said Joe Acker, President of SOCMA. “It is inappropriate for Washington bureaucrats to be given authority over which chemicals to substitute for security purposes. It will also likely create dangerous unintended consequences.”
- Maintain a risk-based approach to chemical control policy and support further development of EPA’s Chemical Assessment and Management Program. “Congress must ensure that any chemical risk management reform be narrowly tailored and avoid sweeping regulation that will stifle industry growth and innovation as well as international trade,” Acker said.
- Halt destructive “card check” legislation that would threaten democratic workplaces and potentially place small businesses at a competitive disadvantage. “Every American worker deserves the right to cast their ballot in private,” said Acker. “This legislation removes that right and opens the door to intimidation and coercion in the workplace.”
- Address the risks associated with importation of active pharmaceutical ingredients from emerging markets. “Congress should encourage innovation and reform within the Food and Drug Administration to enhance its safety and inspection functions to suit a globalized market place and address recent quality issues as well as create a level playing field for U.S. manufacturers,” said Acker.
- Make permanent the research and development tax credits. “I can think of no better time than now to finally make the R&D tax credit permanent,” Acker said. “This would provide our industry with assurance that our members, who spend tens of millions of dollars every year designing new products, can rely on government incentives that keep our industry competitive in the global marketplace. Additionally, these credits help provide incentive to move toward energy independence and greater innovation”.
SOCMA will also monitor and may become engaged on issues such as climate change and free trade agreements as legislation develops.
Additionally, SOCMA announced its “First 100 Days” initiative. Within the first 100 days of the new Obama administration and 111th Congress, SOCMA will meet with new agency heads and key Congressional members to introduce them to the specialty and batch manufacturing industry, share our industry’s priorities, and seek bipartisanship wherever possible. In particular, SOCMA plans to expand Congressional outreach through its grassroots program, SOCMA CONNECT. Like 2008, SOCMA’s member-oriented grassroots advocacy will include an annual Washington Fly-In in June, a continued effort to arrange Congressional visits to SOCMA member facilities, and deployment of an enhanced Internet-based action network.
“A major part of SOCMA’s government relations efforts next year will be directly introducing our industry to the many new faces in Washington and educating them about the critically important contributions our industry makes in jobs, economic stability, and improvement in everyday life, “Acker said. “If we are able to successfully continue this message and work in a bipartisan basis, our legislative and regulatory priorities will prevail.”
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SOCMA is the leading trade association, serving the specialty-batch and custom chemical industry since 1921. SOCMA’s nearly 300 members employ more than 100,000 workers across the country and produce 50,000 products valued at $60 billion annually. For more information please visit www.socma.com.
ChemStewards® is SOCMA’s flagship environmental, health, safety and security (EHS&S) continuous performance improvement program. ChemStewards was created from industry’s commitment to reducing the environmental footprint left by member’s facilities. Industry created ChemStewards to meet the unique needs of the batch, custom, and specialty chemical industry. As a mandatory requirement for SOCMA members engaged in the manufacturing or handling of synthetic and organic chemicals, ChemStewards is helping participants reach for superior EHS&S performance. To learn more visit www.chemstewards.com.
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