September 27, 2021

Washington Wire: Truce Reached in Aircraft Dispute – No Tariffs on Copper-Based Alloys

06/22/2021

 

Truce Reached in Aircraft Dispute – No Tariffs on Copper-Based Alloys
 
In a victory for One Voice, the U.S. and the EU have agreed to suspend the tariffs related to the enforcement of U.S. WTO rights in the Large Civil Aircraft Section 301 case, known as the Boeing-Airbus dispute, for five years. The two sides originally suspended the tariffs for four months in March 2021. The tariffs will remain suspended as long as both the EU and the U.S. uphold the terms of the agreement including no longer providing subsidies for the development of all future passenger aircraft. Both parties also agreed to work together to push for a level playing field to ensure global competitiveness in the aviation sector. The U.S. has also reached a similar deal with the U.K to suspend tariffs for five years on U.K. products caught up in the aircraft-subsidy dispute before Brexit.
 
The seventeen-year fight over subsidies provided to Airbus and Boeing has resulted in duties authorized by the World Trade Organization that target a combined $11.5 billion in products, $7.5 billion imposed by the U.S. and $4 billion imposed by the EU, since 2019.
 
One Voice lobbied successfully to prevent the imposition of tariffs on carbon-based alloys, which were proposed but never implemented. This agreement to suspend the tariffs for five years also removes the threat to copper-based alloys from the EU.
 
The U.S. and EU also committed to lifting the Section 232 steel and aluminum tariffs by the end of the year. NTMA and PMA joined more than thirty other associations in calling on President Biden to terminate the tariffs.

 

 

  
Action Alert: Tell Congress to Support Funding for Critical CTE Programs  
 
Later this month, the House Appropriations Committee will begin to consider the Fiscal Year (FY) 2022 appropriations bills, including those funding critical job training and career and technical education programs.
 
Job recruitment, training, and placement as well as advanced technical education are critical to the future of manufacturing in America. The final spending bills for the last several years have included increases to workforce training programs, such as the Perkins Basic State Grants and the Hollings Manufacturing Extension Partnership (MEP) program, thanks to the efforts of One Voice and our members.
 
The President’s Budget Request (PBR) for FY22 includes a significant increase in funding for the Manufacturing Extension Partnership (MEP) Program, up 83% to $275 million. However, the PBR included only a modest increase of $20 million from FY21 levels for the Perkins V Basic State Grant program, which is a critical part of providing high-quality CTE for learners across America.
 
We need you to contact your members of Congress to call on them to support increasing resources for training programs and raise awareness of manufacturing careers available. Click here and make your voice heard!

 

 

 
Congress Moving on WIOA Reauthorization
 
Ensuring sufficient CTE funding is critical as Congress considers reauthorization of the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA). Last week, the House held its final hearing on the reauthorization of WIOA, which was last updated in 2014. The hearing was the last in a series of hearings and discussions the House Education and Labor Committee held to examine ways to strengthen WIOA and America’s overall workforce development system in light of the challenges created by the COVID-19 pandemic.
 
The hearings focused on several areas such as creating opportunities for youth and justice-involved individuals as well as creating employment pathways for dislocated workers. A common theme discussed during the hearings was the need to look at the full workforce development network and engage all impacted stakeholders. One Voice has always advocated for the need for manufacturers to have a seat at the table when developing workforce training programs to ensure that job training programs are targeted to the specific local needs of a community.
 
While not much movement on workforce development legislation has taken place in the Senate, One Voice filed comments with the Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions (HELP) Committee in April 2021 stating the need to take a holistic approach to workforce training to meet the varying needs of employers, and manufacturers specifically. The Senate may look at moving multiple workforce bills as the House has already passed the National Apprenticeship Act.
 
It is expected that language for a bill could be released in the House as early as the end of June. One Voice will continue to lobby lawmakers in both the House and the Senate on the need to reauthorize and modernize workforce development legislation. 

 

 

 
 
EPA to Reconsider Soot Standard
 
The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has announced that it will reconsider the air quality standards for soot. On June 10, 2021, the EPA stated that it would take a second look at the National Ambient Air Quality Standards (NAAQS) for particulate matter (PM) because “available scientific evidence and technical information indicate that the current standards may not be adequate to protect public health and welfare, as required by the Clean Air Act.” The standard, last set in 2012, was reviewed by the Trump administration last year and left unchanged.
 
Despite the call to decrease the standard for PM2.5 to between 8 and 10 µg/m3 by EPA career staff and outside experts, the Trump administration ultimately recommended retaining the existing NAAQS levels of 12 micrograms per cubic meter (µg/m3) and 150 µg/m3 for fine particles (PM2.5) and coarse particles (PM10) respectively.
 
As the EPA moves forward to review the NAAQS, Clean Air Scientific Advisory Committee (CASAC) has been reinstated after being dismantled in March by EPA Administrator Michael Regan. Regan eliminated all members of the Committee that served under the Trump administration and directed staff to reconfigure the panels with a more balanced mix of expertise. The EPA will also reestablish the CASAC Particulate Matter Panel, which will support the CASAC in providing advice to the agency on determining updated PM standards.
 
The EPA expects to issue a proposed rule on the soot standards next summer with a final regulation issued in Spring 2023.