In a news conference call Tuesday, U.S. Sen. Sherrod Brown outlined his Bring Jobs Home Act, a measure to get businesses to brings jobs back to the U.S. from overseas. The effort would be accomplished, he said, by establishing a tax incentive for companies to bring jobs back, as well as ending a tax loophole for companies that send jobs to foreign countries.
“These issues aren’t new,” Brown said. “We’ve been trying to close this tax loophole for years.”
However, Brown isn’t optimistic about his bill being considered before the November election, but he thinks there’s a good chance of having a serious debate after the election.
“The House has been showing some interest,” he said, referring to the Republican-controlled House of Representatives.
The loophole Brown is trying to close allows companies to classify the cost of moving personnel and company components to a foreign country as a business expense and deduct that cost from their taxes. The bill would instead create a tax cut equal to 20 percent of the cost associated with bringing jobs and business activity back to the U.S.
Brown said the tax laws encourage companies to move overseas where environmental laws are more lax and wages are lower. He noted that in 1990 the U.S. had the same number of manufacturing jobs as in the early 1960s, but between 1999 and 2010, between 3 and 5 million jobs were lost.
“The number has been growing again since 2010,” he said, although slowly.
Ohio has added 400,000 manufacturing jobs, many of those in the auto industry due to the bailout of Chrysler and GM.
“Ohio is the third largest manufacturing state in the union,” Brown said.
Ohio has the trained workers manufacturers need and it has the infrastructure to support industry, which Third World countries often don’t.