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HENRY CALLS FOR STREAMLINED APPROACH TO U.S. COMPETITIVENESS; BILL WOULD ESTABLISH DEPARTMENT OF MANUFACTURING AND COMMERCE

 HENRY CALLS FOR STREAMLINED APPROACH TO U.S. COMPETITIVENESS;
 BILL WOULD ESTABLISH DEPARTMENT OF MANUFACTURING AND COMMERCE
 /ADVANCE/ WASHINGTON, March 10 /PRNewswire/ -- Calling for a comprehensive visionary American competitiveness strategy, Rep. Paul B. Henry (R-Mich.) today introduced legislation to redesign the U.S. Commerce Department as the Department of Manufacturing and Commerce.
 The Henry plan is aimed at breaking down the adversarial relationship between government and American industry. It includes an outline to coordinate the many existing federal programs intended to help manufacturers but which currently are disjointed and often unapproachable.
 "Because we have no coherent strategy or government office speaking for U.S. manufacturers, we often lost sight of how important our industrial base is to this nation," Henry said.
 The Department of Manufacturing and Commerce Act would establish a "Manufacturing Advisory Commission," to recommend which current federal programs should be consolidated into a single Office of Manufacturing.
 "I have toured a number of the manufacturing facilities in Michigan. I have listened to scores of complaints and concerns about what the federal government is and isn't doing to help them survive," Henry explained.
 "While some manufacturers point to education reform, some to technology application, and still others to trade policy, the underlying sentiment is that it is time for governmental action that puts manufacturing into the forefront of federal policy decisions," he added.
 Henry cited an experience the Chrysler Corporation had with Washington bureaucracy as an example of the need for a more streamlined approach to government's manufacturing assistance.
 When the new Chrysler Technology Center was under construction in Auburn Hills, Mich., the company's research division sought NASA's assistance in the design of a wind tunnel. NASA offered to consult with Chrysler, but no vehicles could be tested in NASA's tunnel -- "surface transportation wasn't in the agency charter."
 Chrysler took its cars to Germany's NASA-equivalent agency to conduct the necessary studies.
 Henry said the "bashing" rhetoric in Congress will only go so far. "The fact is that Washington needs to begin to take strong policy actions on a number of fronts to ensure an America that competes, rather than retreats from the global market."
 -0- 3/10/92/1230
 /CONTACT: Stephen Ward or Bob Filka of the Office of Rep. Paul Henry, 202-225-3831/ CO: Office of Rep. Paul Henry ST: District of Columbia IN: SU: LEG


DC-SB -- DC034 -- 6614 03/09/92 17:42 EST
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Date:Mar 9, 1992
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