WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, U.S. Sen. Sherrod Brown (D-OH) passed an amendment that would establish a tax credit to create manufacturing jobs in communities that have faced significant manufacturing jobs loss. Brown’s amendment, based on his Manufacturing Communities Investment Act, would build on the success of the New Markets Tax Credit (NMTC), which incentivizes community developers to invest in low income areas. Brown’s amendment – and an extension of the general NMTC, which expired in 2013 – was included in the Expiring Provisions Improvement Reform and Efficiency (EXPIRE) Act, legislation expected to be passed by the Senate Finance Committee later today. Last month, Brown released a map of Ohio communities that have benefited from the NMTC.

“In manufacturing communities across this nation, the local factory can be the lifeblood of the community. And as we know all too well, the closure of a factory devastates the workers, their families, and the entire community,” Brown said. “This new tax credit would provide support for new, manufacturing investment in hard-hit communities. This tax credit would provide private investors with real incentives to invest in companies that want to breathe new life into shuttered manufacturing facilities and create new jobs.”

The NMTC expired after 2013, but between 2003 and 2012 the program drove $60 billion in private investment while creating more than 550,000 private sector jobs. Nearly 15 percent of NMTC projects have been in the manufacturing sector, leveraging more than $2.50 in private sector investment for every tax credit dollar. This has helped the U.S. manufacturing sector add jobs for the first time since the 1990s. Since December 2009, in fact, the manufacturing sector has added more than 500,000 jobs to the U.S. economy.

But too many manufacturing communities are still struggling since the worst economic crisis since the Great Depression. They are burdened by shuttered plants, diminished tax bases, and a lack of investment capital. Brown’s Manufacturing Communities Investment Act would help these communities by aiding the growth of new manufacturing investments to help replace jobs that they lost during the “Great Recession.” Brown’s provision would provide private investors with real incentives to invest in companies that want to breathe new life into communities that have faced significant manufacturing job loss.

In his remarks before passage of the amendment, Brown referenced some Ohio communities that have faced widespread manufacturing job loss and could potentially utilize the new tax credit. These include:

  • Ontario – near Mansfield – which lost more than 1,200 jobs when the GM facility closed;
  • Twinsburg, which lost 1,200 jobs when a Chrysler plant closed,
  • Norwalk, which lost 300 jobs when Janesville Acoustics announced it was closing its doors,
  • Streetsboro, which lost 300 jobs when Commercial Turf Products shut down, and;
  • Bedford, where 1,100 workers were affected after Ben Venue announced it was closing.

The Manufacturing Communities Investment Act is supported by a number of Ohio’s leading economic development organizations and manufacturing professions, including the Dayton Development Coalition, the City of Dayton; the Toledo-Lucas County Port Authority; the Development Fund of the Western Reserve, the Youngstown-Warren Chamber of Commerce, the Western Reserve Port Authority, the Akron Chamber of Commerce, Alcoa Wheel, the City of Streetsboro, the Finance Fund of Columbus, the Development Finance Authority of Akron; the Toledo Port Authority (which represents 28 Northwest Ohio Counties); the national Council of Development Finance Agencies, the New Markets Tax Credit Coalition, and Northeast Ohio’s Manufacturing Advocacy & Growth Network (MAGNET).