Groups Urge Congress to Oppose Protectionist Legislation

June 10, 2013
Fifteen manufacturing, business, trade and citizen groups sign letter to U.S. congress

The Water and Wastewater Equipment Manufacturers Assn. (WWEMA), along with 14 groups ranging from the U.S. Chamber of Commerce to the National Taxpayers Union to the National Assn. of Water Companies, sent a letter to all members of the U.S. Congress urging them to oppose legislation that would impose domestic content rules on funding for the nation’s much-needed infrastructure projects.

“Such policies are inherently flawed and counter-productive to the economic welfare of U.S. producers and consumers alike,” the letter stated. It pointed to numerous problems with “Buy American” measures: They increase project costs; they place unnecessary regulatory and administrative burdens on local governments, often resulting in the postponement of vital infrastructure projects; they limit access to the best available technologies, even among U.S. suppliers, who often rely on global supply chains; they stifle innovation as companies shy away from sourcing the best production materials; and they risk leading to retaliatory measures in which other countries impose similar restrictions on imports of U.S. goods and services.

“Our nation’s water supply, delivery, and treatment systems are critical to public health, to the economy, to the environment, and to national security,” said WWEMA President Dawn Champney. “Nowhere is it more important for us to find the best and most cost-effective technologies to address our infrastructure needs.”

The 15 groups that signed the letter were:

  • • American Concrete Pressure Pipe Assn.
  • • Associated Equipment Distributors
  • • Association of Equipment Manufacturers
  • • Competitive Enterprise Institute
  • • Emergency Committee for American Trade
  • • National Association of Water Companies
  • • National Foreign Trade Council
  • • National Taxpayers Union
  • • R Street Institute
  • • Reason Foundation
  • • TechAmerica
  • • U.S. Chamber of Commerce
  • • Uni-Bell PVC Pipe Assn.
  • • United States Council for Intl. Business
  • • Water and Wastewater Equipment Manufacturers Assn.

Source: WWEMA