Advocating for Manufacturing Competitiveness
VMAPAC (Virginia Manufacturers Association Political Action Committee) is the political action group organized by the Virginia Manufacturers Association for the purpose of financially supporting those candidates for election to the Virginia General Assembly who share a common belief in the free enterprise system and who recognize that all Virginians benefit from a favorable business climate.
VMAPAC is designed not only to assist business-oriented incumbents, but to encourage well-qualified new candidates, regardless of party affiliation, to run for the Virginia General Assembly.
VMAPAC is a non-profit corporation drawing bipartisan support from business and industrial organizations and individuals who have a sincere interest in good government and a firm belief in the private enterprise system.
Yes! VMAPAC is not structured to solicit for or contribute to federal election campaigns, so it may receive unlimited contributions from corporations, individuals, and other organizations including PACs.
VMAPAC‘s Board of Directors and Officers are members of the VMA Board and the VMA staff. Solicitation of funds and contributions to candidates is their responsibility. VMAPAC will expend funds in support of candidates and officeholders who can make a favorable impact through their legislative leadership and activity.
The maintenance of a healthy business environment in Virginia depends on the makeup of the General Assembly. VMAPAC will support candidates who understand and appreciate the importance of business and industry to Virginia’s economy. VMAPAC will take an active role in the election of Delegates and Senators or statewide candidates who can build and maintain a business climate that encourages economic growth.
Virginia Manufacturing Competitiveness Plan
Advanced technology industries, such as manufacturing, are essential to the United States of America and Virginia economies. Due to the global nature of manufacturing, industry is susceptible to the increasing costs of taxation, energy, regulation, and more. Virginia has an opportunity to reinforce and improve its position as a national leader in manufacturing. VMA PAC publishes the annual Virginia Manufacturing Competitiveness Plan to inform our advocacy decisions toward that goal.
2021 Policy SURVEY QUESTIONS
1) Please indicate your agreement with the following statement reflected in the Code of Virginia Section 40.1-58-69, “I support Virginia’s Right-to-Work laws that ensure that no Virginian is forced to join a Labor union or pay dues to a Labor union to get or keep a job, and I will oppose legislation or regulation to weaken or modify these laws especially those that would remove worker protections from Labor union intimidation, use of force, threats of reprisal, and disruptions of work.”
2) Most MFG jobs require “middle skills” (more than a high school diploma and less than a baccalaureate degree). Do you agree that tax dollars should be used to provide industry credential training grants to individuals based upon their interests but not on financial need?
3) In 2016, the General Assembly created the first performance-driven state funding for citizens to acquire industry credentials – the NEW Workforce Credential Grant. Will you maintain or increase financial support for this grant to individuals?
4) K-12 STEM programs and community college industry credential training programs do not have enough qualified instructors. K-12 resists “adjunct faculty” and the VCCS does not offer competitive pay to attract adjunct faculty. Would you support creating a new K-12 & VCCS adjunct faculty compensation system to recruit qualified instructors?
5) Do you think that increased spending on University budgets should be tied to lowering tuition costs for students and improving graduation rates for degrees in demand?
6) If the General Assembly only agreed to $25 million in new industry related workforce training spending in the next biennium budget, how would you prioritize the following (Rank 1 – Top Priority, 5 = Bottom Priority)?
Performance incentive/grants to companies for high-demand industry credential training
Grants or vouchers to individuals for high-demand industry credential training
Institutional funding to regional higher education centers
Institutional funding to University “centers”
Institutional funding to the Virginia Community College System
1) Energy affordability, reliability, security, and sustainability are essential to manufacturing competitiveness. Do you support an “all of the above” strategy for energy use in Virginia, including naturalgas, nuclear, wind, solar, and biomass?
2) Do you support reforming the VA Clean Economy Act to ensure that the average price of electricity for industrial customers does not exceed the average for all Southern states?
3) Do you support transitioning to a 100% electric-only economy for all business, residential, and transportation needs by 2050?
4) If you answered “YES,” will you support transitioning Virginia to a competitive electricity market (deregulating and opening the market to competition)?
5) Virginia’s Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative (RGGI) participation results in an estimated $170+ million annual tax on electricity consumers. Do you support its repeal?
6) Please rank how state energy Research & Development spending should be prioritized (1 = Top Priority)
1) Will you support legislation or regulation allowing the state and/or localities to establish duplicative or more restrictive environment, health, or safety regulations than authorized by Federal regulations?
2) Environmental activists have started to ban legal and Federally regulated products from the market and state procurement (e.g., polystyrene, single-use plastic packaging, chemicals, etc.). Do you support banning Federally regulated products from being sold or manufactured in Virginia?
3) No state participating in the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative (RGGI) gives its citizen environmental regulatory boards authority over individual company permit approval except Virginia. Would you support repealing that provision for the Air, Water, and Waste Boards?
4) Do you support environmental policies, including “one-stop” permitting, that streamline the regulatory and permitting process to allow for greater operating flexibility, predictability, certainty, and timely construction of environmentally sensitive facilities such as utility infrastructure, MFG operations, transportation infrastructure, etc.?
5) Will you support creating an option for environmental permittees where initial permit approvals can be conducted by certified Professional Engineers (PE) in addition to DEQ staff?
6) Environmental justice advocates want permitted businesses to mail written notice of “potential” environmental impacts to every citizen within a 1 mile radius of their property prior to applying for any environmental permit from DEQ. In some cases, this is tens of thousands of individuals and cost prohibitive. Do you support this change to Virginia’s environmental permitting programs?
7) Environmental advocates want to delegate “site suitability” determinations as part of environmental permit issuance responsibilities to DEQ environmental citizen boards (e.g., Air, Water, Waste Board). This creates a conflict with local government land use zoning authority. Do you support environmental citizen boards regulating site suitability?
8) The General Assembly has recently substantially expanded the exemption of regulations from compliance with the Virginia Administrative Process Act (VAPA). This shortens the timeline for regulations to be developed and eliminates meaningful public input. Will you veto or amend any bill proposing to regulate Virginia business that is exempted from VAPA compliance?
1) VA MFG now ranks #38 in the US for total capital expenditures per employee largely due to the local Machinery & Tools Tax. Do you support eliminating this tax (total local government impact is $232 million annually)?
2) If you answered “Yes,” where would you offset the income “loss” to local government?
3) Do you support maintaining the state sales tax exemption on inputs into MFG?
4) Mandatory unitary combined reporting (“MUCR”) regulations are intended to accurately determine multistate business income attributable to economic activity in a State. Should VA mandate MUCR income tax filing on all multi-state corporations?
5) Manufacturers are increasingly forced to seek tax relief in Circuit Court regarding disputes with local Commissioners of Revenue, in both tangible personal property and real property assessments, because there is no formal appeals process to the State Tax Commissioner. Would you support instituting an appeals process to the State Tax Commissioner for industrial taxpayers?
1) Virginia’s entire state, regional, and local economic development system is essentially dedicated to recruiting new businesses to the Commonwealth. Virginia has minimal existing and small business services. Virginia ranks #44 in generating new entrepreneurs per year. Will you support efforts to restructure economic development resources to focus on small and existing businesses and business formation?
2) The VMA set a goal of expanding manufactured goods exports by 50% by 2025. In 2016, the General Assembly codified the Virginia International Trade Corporation (VITC) to leverage Federal, State, Local, non-profit, and private resources to meet this goal. The VITC was modeled after the successful VA Tourism Corp. However, the implementation was stalled and VEDP was given this responsibility but Virginia’s export ranking has remained almost unchanged. Will you revisit VITC implementation?
1) Virginia truck and semi-trailers (with 5+ axles) are limited to an 80,000 pound maximum gross weight limit on VA highways and interstates. New trucks and trailer technology can better distribute weight to reduce road damage and safely stop heavier loads. In order to improve transportation efficiency (less congestion) and MFG competitiveness, would you support legislation that would seek Federal increases in truck and semi-trailer maximum gross weights?
2) Virginia semi-trailers are limited to 53 feet. With lighter loads, these semi-trailers are often full before the truck and semi-trailer reaches its maximum gross weight limit. This is called “cubing out before weighing out.” Would you support increasing the length of semi-trailers to improve transportation efficiency?
1) Will you work with the VMA to qualify key candidates for DEQ, VDOLI, and other citizen boards, studies, and commissions?
2) The VMA Board of Directors is interested in holding two meetings per year with you to maintain direct dialogue on priority issues. Will you support this type of close working relationship?
2020-2021 Virginia Legislative Competitiveness Scorecard
Transparency is essential to understanding the actions of legislators. The Virginia Legislative Competitiveness Scorecard will better inform members how frequently each legislator votes for manufacturing competitiveness. Scoring is based on votes involving select VMA Priority and Defensive Priority bills. Legislators are given credit for voting for the VMA position, and penalized for voting against it. All legislators scoring 70% (C) or better are honored with the VMA PAC Manufacturing Competitiveness Certificate. The recipients of the top 3 scores in the Senate and House of Delegates are honored with the VMAPAC Industrial Strength Leadership Award to recognize their exemplary commitment to Virginia’s manufacturing competitiveness.
Congratulations to the 2021 Recipients of the VMAPAC Industrial STrength Leadership Award
SENATOR TRAVIS HACKWORTH
100% | Senate District 38
SENATOR MARK PEAKE
93% | Senate District 22
Senator Amanda Chase
90% | Senate District 11
Senator John Cosgrove Jr.
90% | Senate District 14
SENATOR SIOBHAN DUNNAVANT
90% | Senate District 12
Senator Jen Kiggans
90% | Senate District 7
Senator Ryan McDougle
90% | Senate District 4
Delegate Carrie Coyner
89% | House District 62
Delegate Joe Mcnamara
89% | House District 8
Delegate Buddy Fowler Jr.
88% | House District 55
Delegate Lee WARE
88% | House District 65
Delegate Rob Bloxom Jr.
86% | House District 100
Delegate Glenn Davis Jr.
86% | House District 84
Delegate Chris Runion
86% | House District 25