Hultgren Introduces Legislation to Modernize Manufacturing Bonds to Bolster Illinois' Industry Expansion Efforts
Washington, DC – U.S. Representative Randy Hultgren (R-IL-14) along with Rep. Richard Neal (D-MA-01) introduced a bipartisan bill to modernize the financial tools used by manufacturers in Illinois and nationwide. The Modernizing American Manufacturing Bonds Act (MAMBA) of 2014, H.R. 5319, which updates the three decades-old rules governing manufacturing bonds, is supported by the Illinois Manufacturers’ Association, the Council of Development Finance Agencies (CDFA), and 14th District manufacturers. These changes will help struggling manufacturers expand their businesses, invest in new equipment and, most importantly, hire more workers.
“Our tumultuous, increasingly global and technology-based economy poses tremendous challenges to Illinois manufacturers. Unfortunately, antiquated, decades-old policies governing a key tool that manufacturers use to expand operations no longer address today’s challenges, needlessly impeding growth and job creation in the Illinois manufacturing sector,” said Rep. Hultgren. “MAMBA is a bipartisan bill that sensibly reforms these outdated rules at little cost to the taxpayer. I am pleased to be joined in this effort by Rep. Neal and I look forward to working in the House to pass this bill. Illinois manufacturers and their employees need relief.”
Ten percent of all Illinois workers are involved in manufacturing and 12.4 percent of Illinois’ Gross Domestic Product (GDP) is attributable to manufacturing, making up the largest share of Illinois GDP. Manufacturing facilities employ more than 27,000 workers across the 14th Congressional District.
"Bison Gear is an innovative, dynamic, family-owned company based in St. Charles, Illinois that competes in the global marketplace," said Ronald D. Bullock, Chairman of Bison Gear & Engineering Corporation. "Since 1987, we have increased our sales volume more than ten-fold, expanded our product lines, and added research and development capabilities to our high-tech manufacturing operation in St. Charles. We used manufacturing bonds to efficiently access low-cost capital to upgrade our facilities. Unfortunately, this important tool has not been updated since the mid-1980s—about the same time that we bought Bison Gear.
“On behalf of our company, I thank Congressman Randy Hultgren (R-IL-14) and Congressman Richard Neal (D-MA-01) for introducing the Modernizing American Manufacturing Bonds Act (MAMBA). This legislation modernizes traditional industrial development revenue bonds to reflect the needs of American manufacturing in the 21st century. If enacted into federal law, MAMBA would enable Bison Gear to continue to expand our U.S. manufacturing, research and development, and engineering facilities, as well as collaborate more effectively at our St. Charles location with our global customers. Everyone should understand the importance of manufacturing to our national economy. In Illinois alone, manufacturing employs nearly 600,000 workers and contributes the largest single share of the Gross State Product."
“On behalf of the Illinois Manufacturers’ Association and our thousands of member companies across our State, I applaud Congressman Randy Hultgren and Congressman Richard Neal for introducing the Modernizing American Manufacturing Bonds Act,” said Mark Denzler, Vice President and COO of the Illinois Manufacturers’ Association. “Industrial revenue bonds provide low-cost and efficient access to capital for small and mid-sized manufacturing companies but this important job creation tool has not been updated in nearly 30 years. The Modernizing American Manufacturing Bonds Act will help bring good jobs back to America’s shores and help expand today’s manufacturing renaissance in Illinois and across the country.”
H.R. 5319 expands the number of eligible projects using Qualified Small Issue Manufacturing Bonds, more commonly known as Industrial Development Bonds (IDBs) or manufacturing bonds, to better reflect today’s manufacturing sector:
- Expands definition of manufacturing facilities to include those that manufacture, process, or produce intangible property like software, patents and similar intellectual property, giving the high-tech manufacturing sector access to manufacturing bonds.
- Removes “functionally related and subordinate facility” restriction, reducing the complexity involved in financing projects and letting manufacturers better develop projects that align the company with modern business practices and higher quality of life.
- Increases the manufacturing bond size limitation from $10 million to $30 million, allowing businesses to finance the larger projects of the 21st century.
- Increases manufacturing bonds’ 6-year capital expenditure limitation from $20 million to $40 million, helping manufacturers better plan for long-term expansion.