UTICA, N.Y. (WUTR/WFXV/WPNY-TV) — U.S. Senator Chuck Schumer was able to get his Innovation and Competition Act of 2021 passed in the senate, but as the bill moves to Congress he is faced with opposition from both sides.
“There’s just an awful lot of outlay in Schumer’s bill that looks a little like and I hate to say corporate welfare but that’s exactly what it is,” – Claudia Tenney, Congresswoman for NY-22 said.
The legislation includes an amendment that would provide $50 billion in emergency funding to boost domestic semiconductor production in light of the global chip shortage. While this money would benefit the Mohawk Valley, with businesses like CREE in Marcy, Innovare in Rome, and Indium, congressional members have expressed concerns with using taxpayer’s money to fund these already large corporations.
“I think that we can do maybe an amended and better version,” Tenney explained. “Something similar to my American Innovation and Manufacturing Act which would be incentivizing businesses here and in our communities for them to actually invest using a loan program.”
Congressional Democrats have also expressed frustrations with Schumer’s bill, Congressman Gregory Meeks, the Foreign Affairs Committee Chairman has introduced his own China competition bill, the National Foundation For the Future Act.
Tenney’s bill is co-sponsored in the Senate by Marco Rubio, and she feels that her bill is better suited for insuring that businesses stay.
There’s always that fear of the pay to play and the kickback and things you hear about,” Tenney said. “That’s why it’s a dangerous thing to do, it’s better to have companies invest their own money and to take the risk and give them incentives to do that than to take taxpayer money and have the taxpayers invest in something that may not work.”