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Consumer Group Applauds Expiration of Softwood Lumber Agreement (SLA)
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Consumer Group Applauds Expiration of Softwood Lumber Agreement (SLA)

The American Consumers for Affordable Homes (ACAH), a 14-member alliance of consumer groups, home builders, and lumber dealers, applauded the U.S. and Canadian governments for allowing the U.S./Canada Softwood Lumber Agreement of 1996 (SLA) to expire at midnight last night. However, ACAH members today called for vigilance against any new proposals that would harm American consumers. "The quota system under the SLA amounted to a hidden lumber tax on U.S. lumber consumers and lumber-using industries. Its demise is long overdue," said Susan Petniunas, ACAH spokesperson. "However, we must be watchful in the that pressures from U.S. protectionist lumber producers on the Bush administration and Congress do not result in re-imposing yet another hidden tax on homebuyers and the U.S. consumer through some new trade restraint." "Unfortunately, we may face the inevitable uncertainty that will come if this issue is adjudicated by the International Trade Commission when U.S. lumber producers seek a countervailing duty (CVD) or other trade restraint," the ACAH said in a letter sent today to the President and Bush administration and members of the U.S. Senate and House of Representatives. The ACAH believes that action under existing U.S. trade law is the only appropriate course for addressing the lumber industry's complaints. U.S. lumber producers have tried three times before to prove their case and such legal processes are a better and more fair option for consumers than arbitrary quotas, export taxes, or other such trade restraints. Due to the quota on Canadian lumber coming into the United States, the SLA raised the cost of a new home by about $1,000. The U.S. Census Bureau has estimated a price increase of that magnitude results in approximately 300,000 families not qualifying for a mortgage each year. The consumer alliance called upon Senators and Representatives to continue to support two bipartisan resolutions urging free trade and no new trade restraint on lumber: H. Con. Res. 45 was introduced in the House by Representatives Jim Kolbe (R-AZ) and Steny Hoyer (D-MD) and now has approximately 75 co-sponsors; S. Con. Res. 4 has 10 co-sponsors in the Senate. These resolutions express Congressional support for free trade of softwood lumber between the United States and Canada, inclusion of all stakeholders in discussions regarding trade of softwood lumber, and a competitive North American market for softwood lumber," the letter read. "Further, these resolutions outline the negative impact of the SLA on housing affordability in America and that there should be no renegotiation of trade restraints -- it is time for free trade." "Softwood lumber has a huge impact on the U.S. economy. The home building sector is responsible for employing more than six million workers," the letter continues. "The economic health of this nation relies on a strong housing market and the ability to provide the American dream of home ownership. The ACAH encourages (members of Congress) to consider the needs of prospective homebuyers -- and those who are remodeling or adding to their homes-throughout the country on issues related to softwood lumber trade between the U.S." ACAH members include CHEP USA, Citizens for a Sound Economy, Consumers for World Trade, Free Trade Lumber Council, The Home Depot, International Mass Retail Association, Leggett & Platt Inc., Manufactured Housing Association for Regulatory Reform, Manufactured Housing Institute, National Association of Home Builders, National Black Chamber of Commerce, National Lumber and Building Material Dealers Association, National Retail Federation, and the United States Hispanic Contractors Association.

04/01/2001
Mayor Lang's Tactics Provoke Miner Tantrum
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Mayor Lang's Tactics Provoke Miner Tantrum

BY Sarah Lindenfeld

Last week, state Rep. David Miner, a Cary Republican, laced into Cary leaders for persuading Sen. Wib Gulley, a Durham Democrat, to introduce several bills for them, mostly requests for permission to charge developers various new impact fees. "He (Mayor Glen Lang) can't get anyone in the Wake delegation to introduce these bills, so he gets a Durham senator," Miner said. "This is extremely unprofessional, sloppy and at the very least disrespectful. It's a classic case of how you don't do business around here."

03/31/2001
Tilted Reform Lockbox
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Tilted Reform Lockbox

BY L. Brent Bozell III

Is big money ruining politics? Do we have a political debate strangled by special interests? Here's one vision of how major corporations are blatantly promoting their own selfish agenda, doling out massive resources to back a politician who will carry their water. The industry is the national media. The water-carrying pol is Sen. John McCain, Arizona Republican.

03/31/2001
Citizens Group Backs Bush Decision on Kyoto
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Press Release

Citizens Group Backs Bush Decision on Kyoto

Citizens for a Sound Economy (CSE) today applauded President George W. Bush’s decision not to implement the Kyoto Protocol and to seek a fresh approach to climate change. Said CSE’s director of Environmental Policy Patrick Burns, “President Bush deserves a great deal of credit for taking a principled and politically courageous stand. This is good news for the economy and for America’s working families.”

03/29/2001
Beyond the Tax Cut
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Press Release

Beyond the Tax Cut

Statement by Empower America Chairman of the Board, E. Floyd Kvamme House Financial Services Committee Hearing, 'Beyond the tax cut: Unleashing the economy' 03/29/2001

03/29/2001
House Passes Common Sense Budget
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Press Release

House Passes Common Sense Budget

Citizens for a Sound Economy (CSE) congratulates the U.S. House of Representatives for passing the FY 2002 Budget Resolution. This budget represents a return to fiscal sanity, as the Congress has voted to hold the line on spending, pay down the national debt and give the American people real tax relief.

03/28/2001
CSE's Response to Bush's Tax Address
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Press Release

CSE's Response to Bush's Tax Address

Citizens for a Sound Economy would like to applaud the President’s March 27, 2001 speech in Kalamazoo, MI. To the local Chamber of Commerce, Bush voiced his support for both short-term and long-term tax cuts. He stated that he was in favor of a smaller, immediate tax cut because, "in the short term, the American consumer needs a hand." He also supported a long-term tax cut because, as he noted, the economy needs, "more than a one time boost."

03/28/2001
Empower America President Applauds President Bush's Choice of Empower America Chairman of the Board, E. Floyd Kvamme
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Press Release

Empower America President Applauds President Bush's Choice of Empower America Chairman of the Board, E. Floyd Kvamme

Today, Empower America President James R. (JT) Taylor made the following statement shortly after President Bush announced E. Floyd Kvamme to co-chair the President's Council of Advisors on Science and Technology:

03/28/2001
Empower America President Applauds President Bush's Choice of Empower America Chairman of the Board, E. Floyd Kvamme
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Press Release

Empower America President Applauds President Bush's Choice of Empower America Chairman of the Board, E. Floyd Kvamme

Today, Empower America President James R. (JT) Taylor made the following statement shortly after President Bush announced E. Floyd Kvamme to co-chair the President's Council of Advisors on Science and Technology:

03/28/2001
A Letter From Seoul
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Press Release

A Letter From Seoul

Copley News Service, 03/27/2001 The world economy is caught in a vice between the jaws of monetary deflation and fiscal austerity, the result of extraordinarily tight monetary policy and high tax rates. According to Bear Stearns Chief International Economist David Malpass, the global economy is likely to contract by about half a percent in nominal terms this year.

03/27/2001

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