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The American Mold Builders Assn. (AMBA) went to Washington, DC on Sept. 14 and 15 to meet with Congress people, both senators and representatives, and let them know the reality of what small businesses—especially those in manufacturing—are facing in the real world. I was assigned to a team and for two days we visited the offices of the senators and representatives with whom we had prearranged meetings.

Clare Goldsberry

October 16, 2009

3 Min Read
Get involved!

The American Mold Builders Assn. (AMBA) went to Washington, DC on Sept. 14 and 15 to meet with Congress people, both senators and representatives, and let them know the reality of what small businesses—especially those in manufacturing—are facing in the real world. I was assigned to a team and for two days we visited the offices of the senators and representatives with whom we had prearranged meetings. 



Our team went to the offices of Rep. Mike Pence (R-IN), Senator Richard Luger (R-IN), Rep. Dennis Moore (D-KS), Sen. Sam Brownback (R-KS), Rep. Brad Ellsworth (D-IN), Rep. Dan Burton (R-IN), Rep. Blaine Luetkemeyer (R-MO), and Rep. Ann Kirkpatrick (D-AZ). The conversations we had with these people—or mostly their aides and assistants—were, we felt, very beneficial.

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AMBA Michigan delegation (left to right): Bill Berry of Die-Tech & Engineering; Congressman Fred Upton of Michigan; Sandra Berry of Die-Tech & Engineering; Hank Baxter of Miller Mold; Todd Finley of Commercial Tool Group; Andy Baker of Byrne Tool; Dave LaGrow of Maximum Mold; and John Blundy of Incoe.

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AMBA Carolinas delegation (left to right): Tim Pratt of Richmond Tooling; Dave Bowers of JMMS Inc.; Scott Phipps of United Tool & Mold; Congressman Patrick McHenry of North Carolina; Nika Bailey of United Tool & Mold; Robbie Earnhardt of Superior Tooling; Roger McGinnis of Richmond Tooling; and Steve Rotman of Ameritech Die & Mold.

When promoting ways to provide incentives to get large OEMs to invest in manufacturing plants in the United States, we asked them about tax reform to reduce the U.S. corporate tax rate from an onerous 38% to something more palatable for these companies, and making them less likely to move to Mexico and China. It's tough to create jobs when the best job creators—manufacturing companies—are moving away. It was helpful, when discussing this topic with the gentlemen from Indiana, that Whirlpool had just announced the closing of a plant in Evansville, IN and the loss of 1100 jobs. Rep. Ellsworth is from Evansville, and he understands the gravity of the situation. As a Blue Dog Democrat, Rep. Ellsworth, along with two aides that sat in the meeting with us and took copious notes, promised that he was certainly not happy about the business tax situation or the move of manufacturing offshore or to Mexico, where Whirlpool's Evansville jobs are headed (Mexico). 



We can sit on our hands and do nothing while Congress forces healthcare programs on us that don't work and raises taxes, or we can let them know, as Pat Dolan of GH Tool & Mold Inc. (Washington, MO) did: that Health Savings Accounts and Flexible Spending Accounts like the ones he established for his 100 employees really work! And please don't take those off the table. 



When the people speak, our senators and representatives listen—otherwise, they might find themselves looking for a new job next November.

If you have an opinion, a complaint, a concern, or an issue you want to raise, let your voice be heard. The people inside the Beltway have little knowledge of the real world out here in the manufacturing heartland. It's up to us to tell them what's happening. Contact your Senators and Representatives and let them know how you feel. They do take your call! They do make notes of your concerns and issues—I saw them taking calls and making notes. After all, they are the servants of the people, not the other way around. And if you feel you can't do it on your own, get with a group that's active with Washington like the AMBA, which represents the interests of U.S. mold manufacturers, and work with them to strengthen our industry. —Clare Goldsberry

About the Author(s)

Clare Goldsberry

Until she retired in September 2021, Clare Goldsberry reported on the plastics industry for more than 30 years. In addition to the 10,000+ articles she has written, by her own estimation, she is the author of several books, including The Business of Injection Molding: How to succeed as a custom molder and Purchasing Injection Molds: A buyers guide. Goldsberry is a member of the Plastics Pioneers Association. She reflected on her long career in "Time to Say Good-Bye."

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