WASHINGTON, D.C.—U.S. Sen. Sherrod Brown, chairman of the Northeast-Midwest Coalition, released the following statement today after a letter from dozens of manufacturing and business advocates urging full funding for the Manufacturing Extension Partnership (MEP) was sent to key members of the Senate and House Appropriations Subcommittees on Commerce, Justice, Science, and Related Agencies. Brown is a member of that Subcommittee in the Senate.                

“Manufacturing creates good-paying, middle-class jobs, and has allowed millions of families to achieve the proverbial American dream,” Brown said. “We’re a country that knows how to make things, and how to make them well. The Manufacturing Extension Partnership plays a tremendous role in that, which is why so many business and small business advocates are joining me in the call for full funding of the MEP in the budget measure for Fiscal Year 2011.  We must continue to fund the MEP, which will help spur our country’s economic recovery and create new jobs.”

“[The] MEP is critical to the creation and retention of U.S. manufacturing jobs,” the letter read. “Each year, the program is validated by an independent third party.  Based on their latest report, the MEP program created and retained 72,075 jobs in FY09 alone and more than 318,000 since the program was created in 1988.”

As Chairman of the Senate Banking Subcommittee on Economic Policy and a member of the Senate Manufacturing Caucus, Brown has previously introduced a package of key legislative proposals aimed at bolstering the competiveness of U.S. manufacturers and boosting domestic manufacturing. He also serves as a member of the President’s Export Council, working to advance the National Export Initiative (NEI) and reach President Barack Obama’s goal to double exports over the next five years.

During the State Work Period last year, Brown traveled around Ohio meeting with small business owners and workers as part of his “Made in Ohio Tour.”  Described as “Congress’ leading proponent of American Manufacturing,” Brown is working with the Obama Administration on the creation of a national manufacturing policy and has outlined five key areas of focus to invest in the manufacturing industry:  

  • Creating a business climate, through tax and health care policies, favorable to investment in manufacturing;
  • Investing in the manufacturing capacity for national priorities such as clean energy and critical military equipment;
  • Strengthening our component supply chains through the Manufacturing Extension Partnership (MEP);
  • Matching dislocated workers with emerging industries through sector-based workforce training strategies;
  • Making the research and development tax credit permanent to lend predictability to this crucial incentive for manufacturing innovation;
  • Promoting exports and defending against unfair trade.

The full text of the letter is below.

Dear Chairwoman Mikulski, Chairman Wolf, Ranking Members Hutchison and Fattah,

The undersigned associations, representing tens of thousands of U.S. manufacturers and millions of employees, respectfully urge you to support funding the Manufacturing Extension Partnership (MEP) at $125 million in the FY 2011 Continuing Resolution.   

MEP is critical to the creation and retention of U.S. manufacturing jobs.  Each year, the program is validated by an independent third party.  Based on their latest report, the MEP program created and retained 72,075 jobs in FY09 alone and more than 318,000 since the program was created in 1988. 

The federal funding for this program is essential to leveraging equal investments from both the state and local governments and client fees.  In FY09 this public/private program created or retained $8.4 billion in sales, allowed their clients to make $1.9 billion in new investments, and provided $1.3 billion in cost savings.  

Manufacturing is key to our economic recovery and job creation.  Thank you in advance for preserving $125 million for the Manufacturing Extension Partnership program in the FY11 Continuing Resolution.


Aerospace Industries Association

Alliance for American Manufacturing

American Small Manufacturers Coalition

AMT - The Association For Manufacturing Technology

Arlington (TX) Chamber of Commerce

Association for Manufacturing Excellence

Associated Industries of Florida

Associated Industries of Missouri


California Manufacturers & Technology Association

California Space Authority

Dallas County Manufacturers’ Association

Garland Chamber of Commerce

Delaware Manufacturing Association

Delaware State Chamber of Commerce

Fabricators & Manufacturers Association

Iowa Association of Business and Industry

Kentucky Association of Manufacturers

Maryland Chamber of Commerce

Manufacturing Association of North Texas

Michigan Manufacturers Association

Mississippi Manufacturers Association

Montana Chamber of Commerce

Montana Manufacturing Council

National Association of Manufacturers

National Council for Advanced Manufacturing

National Defense Industrial Association

National Tooling and Machining Association

Nevada Manufacturers Association

North Central Texas InterLink, Inc.

The Ohio Manufacturers Association

Precision Machined Products Association

Precision Metalforming Association - California

Puerto Manufacturers Association

Reshoring Initiative

San Antonio Manufacturers Association

SPI: The Plastics Industry Trade Association

Society of Plastics Engineers, So Cal Section

Tennessee Chamber of Commerce & Industry

Texas Economic Development Council

United States Chamber of Commerce

Utah Manufacturers Association

Washington County Manufacturers’ Association

cc:        United States House of Representatives

            United States Senate