Outdoor Industry Association (OIA) heralded the introduction of the Recreational Performance Outerwear Act of 2008 (H.R. 6483) on July 15, the first ever trade legislation specifically for outdoor performance apparel manufacturers…
The legislation applies to all finished recreational performance outerwear, regardless of country of origin, and was developed in close consultation with the U.S. textile and apparel industry, including SnowSports Industries America (SIA). Provisions are included in the bill to specifically protect U.S. fabric manufacturers and Western Hemisphere apparel manufacturers and to invest in research and development jobs in the United States. The bill also invests substantial resources in U.S. technology that focus on sustainable, environmentally-conscious manufacturing by helping textile and apparel producers streamline their supply chains, minimize water and energy use, and reduce their overall environmental footprint.
Separately, SIA is working with Rep. Wally Hergers (R-CA) office to suspend duties on ski poles through the end of 2011. The bill to accomplish the duty suspension would be passed as part of the larger Miscellaneous Tariff Bill (MTB), which has not yet been introduced in the Congress. If the MTB becomes law, it would save U.S. importers of ski poles nearly $300,000 of tariff duties.
“The Recreational Performance Outerwear Apparel Act focuses on specific, high performance outerwear and separates these specialty outdoor products from general, mass market apparel,” said Frank Hugelmeyer, OIA president. “This bill is an everybody wins proposition: Outdoor apparel manufacturers receive appropriate and needed relief from outdated, excessively high tariffs; U.S. textile firms shipping inputs for more basic outerwear production in NAFTA and CAFTA countries are protected; American consumers gain access to more affordable outdoor products; and the environment wins through the investment in U.S. technology that enables sustainable business practices here at home and around the world.”