CLEVELAND - The Precision Metalforming Association (PMA) and the National Tooling and Machining Association (NTMA) announced that they are combining their federal government advocacy programs to promote U.S. government policies that will ensure a strong manufacturing sector in the United States. PMA and NTMA each have had an active advocacy program for many years and will now implement a coordinated, joint federal advocacy effort while maintaining their status as separate organizations. Together, industries represented by PMA and NTMA employ nearly 1 million and have combined sales in excess of $130 billion.

The Franklin Partnership, LLP, a bipartisan government relations firm that provides comprehensive legislative affairs and public policy services, has been engaged by NTMA and PMA to support this joint advocacy program for the 111th Congress. The Franklin Partnership’s diverse client base includes large and small manufacturing companies, manufacturing trade associations, municipal governments, defense contractors, hospitals and medical research facilities, among others.

“Manufacturing is the backbone of America, and if we want this sector not only to survive, but thrive, we need to assert our priorities in Washington, D.C. as effectively as possible. We are very excited about the credibility and impact that our joint advocacy effort will bring to manufacturing issues in Washington,” said Roy Sweatman, NTMA’s 2008 chairman.

“PMA and NTMA have both led effective Washington advocacy efforts independently, but we believe this joint effort will allow us to further enhance awareness of our industry among members of Congress and the Administration,” commented Ralph Hardt, PMA’s 2008 chairman.

Key issues for the 111th Congress include: defeating Employee Free Choice legislation (card check) which would rob employees of the right to a secret ballot in determining whether or not they wish to be represented by a union; and, advocating for permanent R&D tax credit; affordable health care choices for small-middle-market companies; corporate tax changes assuring a strong manufacturing base in America; effective federal support for education in the skilled trades; enforcement of trade laws; access by U.S. manufacturers to globally competitive prices for the raw materials needed to manufacture in America; industrial consumer standing in trade cases; and addressing the estate tax issue on a permanent basis.

“Selection of The Franklin Partnership, with its expertise on legislative issues that are important to small-middle-market metalworking companies, will allow the PMA-NTMA advocacy program to hit the ground running at the start of the 111th Congress,” said Joe Tenebria, chair of NTMA’s Government Relations Team.

Jim McGregor, chair of PMA’s Government Relations Committee, observed that metalworking trade associations must work together to develop a larger, more effective footprint in Washington, D.C. “While dozens of separate trade associations represent various metalforming technologies, only a few are actively engaged in Washington, D.C.,” commented McGregor. “PMA’s partnership with NTMA to fight for manufacturing in America is a big step forward in increasing our industry’s effectiveness in lobbying for policies that help create high-wage, high-skilled jobs among small-middle-market manufacturers.”