Outdoor Industry Applauds Senate’s Introduction of the Affordable Footwear Act of 2013

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Media contacts:

I Ling Thompson
Outdoor Industry Association
(303) 327-3531
ithompson@outdoorindustry.org

Kate Fielder
Starview Strategies
435-640-6110
kate@starviewstrategies.com

Boulder, Colo., Nov 13, 2013 - Outdoor Industry Association® (OIA) commends the recent introduction of the Affordable Footwear Act of 2013 (S. 1633) by Senators Maria Cantwell (D-WA) and Roy Blunt (R-MO). The bi-partisan legislation would suspend import duties on outdoor footwear for five years. Co-sponsored by Sens. Jerry Moran (R-KS), Amy Klobuchar (D-MN), Pat Roberts (R-KS), Mike Johanns (R-ID), and Claire McCaskill (D-MO), the bill would lower consumer costs, promote jobs and drive innovation in domestically produced outdoor footwear.

While the average U.S. tariff on consumer goods is 2 percent, tariffs on outdoor footwear products are as high as 37.5 percent. In fact, many of the high tariffs on outdoor footwear exceed federal taxes on cigarettes, a striking disparity which would be corrected by the Affordable Footwear Act’s passage.

OIA worked closely with its members to ensure that none of the products covered by the bill are produced in the U.S. Additionally, the limited duration of the bill will allow Congress to remove any products that may be made in the U.S. in the future. 

Rep. Lynn Jenkins (R-KS) introduced the House version of the bill – HR 1708 – last spring. It currently has a bi-partisan group of 48 co-sponsors.

“This common sense piece of legislation will benefit consumers and businesses,” said Kirk Bailey, vice president of government affairs of Outdoor Industry Association. “By eliminating disproportionally high tariffs, this bill will fuel innovation in the outdoor domestic shoe industry and help create new jobs in the U.S. By lowering costs for consumers, the Affordable Footwear Act of 2013 will make outdoor recreation and outdoor products more affordable for more Americans.” 

OIA is asking its members to urge their Senators to become co-sponsors on the Affordable Footwear Act of 2013.

Outdoor Industry Association
Based in Boulder, CO, with offices in Washington, D.C., Outdoor Industry Association is the leading trade association for the outdoor industry and the title sponsor of Outdoor Retailer. OIA supports the growth and success of more than 4,000 manufacturers, distributors, suppliers, sales representatives and retailers of outdoor recreation apparel, footwear, equipment and services. For more information, visit outdoorindustry.org or call 303.444.3353.

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