(07/18/2012)
"We now give tax incentives for people who move jobs offshore. That's just about the dumbest thing I've ever heard." - Senator Rockfeller

You may have noticed "Local Jobs for Local Workers" signs throughout the area. The Parkersburg Area Labor Council, a nonpartisan community organization representing Calhoun, Pleasants, Ritchie, Wirt and Wood counties, is responsible for placing those signs.

Brian Stanley, Labor Council President, says that "Local Jobs for Local Workers" is not just a campaign motto, but much more than that. "We have suffered loss of local jobs, much like the rest of the country.

Too often contracts are given to out of state contractors who hire out of state workers. It is disappointing that when we have jobs locally workers who are not from the area perform the work, taking earnings out of state.

We are encouraging local employers to hire local workers who are qualified and motivated to perform the work, keeping the earnings in the area."

Not only are local jobs being performed by out of state workers, but jobs that were once being performed by US workers are ever increasingly being outsourced offshore.

The huge export of American jobs (some 6 million manufacturing jobs in the past decade) by U.S. corporations has become a focal point of national politics.

The Senate recently introduced legislation to address the issue of outsourcing jobs to foreign countries. Senate Bill 2884 "Bring Jobs Home Act" was introduced in May of this year.

The Bring Jobs Home Act amends the Internal Revenue Code to:

1. Grant business taxpayers a tax credit for up to 20% of insourcing expenxes incurred for eliminating a business located outside the United States and relocating it within the United States.

2. Deny a tax deduction for outsourcing expenses incurred in relocating a U.S. business outside the United States. Requires an increase in the taxpayer's employment of full-time employees in the United States in order to claim the tax credit for insourcing expenses.

The bill will cut taxes for U.S. companies that move jobs and business operations to the United States and end tax loopholes that reward companies that ship jobs overseas.

Recently Sen. Jay Rockefeller (D-W.Va.) cut straight to the chase at a Bring Jobs Home roundtable in Charleston. "We now give tax incentives for people who move jobs offshore. That's just about the dumbest thing I've ever heard."

"It's starting to really settle in. People realize that we have to do something about the imports. A lot of people do not realize about the tax incentives that existed in U.S. policies that actual benefit corporations that take these jobs offshore," said Stanley.

"Strong policies are important if we want our economy to grow and families to succeed. We can only rebuild our economy and our middle class when our country stops rewarding companies that outsource, creates trade agreements that protect workers' rights and prevents currency manipulation so that jobs stay in our country."

Along with the Bring Jobs Home Act, American workers are clamoring for Made in the U.S.A. products and asking where they can find them.

With news stories like the U.S. athletes wearing Made in China uniforms in the 2012 summer Olympics, now is the time to spread the word that there are union-made, "Made in America" products being manufactured in the U.S.

Union members all over the country are urging Congress to pass the Bring Jobs Home Act and to support legislation that would:

• Stop currency manipulation by our trading partners

* Tax the overseas income of U.S. corporations the same way we tax their domestic income, so they no longer can lower their tax bill by shifting income and jobs overseas.

• Bar companies that send call center jobs overseas from receiving federal grants and tax breaks.

• Push for fair trade policies that benefit workers—not just multinational corporations.

The U.S. Senate is poised to vote on the Bring Jobs Home Act on July 19. This bill would stop corporations from deducting their moving expenses when they export U.S. jobs to other countries.

Stanley encourages everyone to call your senators now at 888-659-9401 and tell them to support the Bring Jobs Home Act by voting YES. Regardless of the outcome of the Bring Jobs Home Act, we can do our part locally to support local workers by buying American Made products.

"You can make a powerful statement by refusing to purchase products that are made overseas and only purchase American made products," said Stanley.

"By purchasing American made items, we are placing an emphasis on bringing jobs back home. Recycling our tax dollars back into the area is critical for supporting our local economy."

The Parkersburg Area Labor Council is one of 13 Labor Councils in West Virginia.

To learn more about the Parkersburg Area Labor Council contact Brian Stanley at: Parkersburg Area Labor Council, P.O. Box 102, Parkersburg, WV 26101 or by calling 304-210-8858. You can also learn more by going to our website: wv.aflcio.org/488 or visit us on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/#!/pages/Parkersburg-Area-Labor-Council/261390900629692


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