The “Buy American Salt” Act (A7919-A/S9441), sponsored by Assemblymember Harry Bronson and Senator Tim Kennedy, has passed in both the Assembly and Senate. This legislation would require public agencies and authorities that purchase rock salt or sodium chloride to purchase salt mined in the United States. This requirement is subject to certain waivers and exceptions, such as, if the salt is not readily available from mines located in the United States.
“The ‘Buy American Salt’ act is essential to ensuring New York tax dollars support local workers and their families. Right now, we are witnessing an industry that derives its salt from overseas while we have two highly productive salt mines, American Rock Salt and Cargill – Lansing, here in New York State,” said Assemblymember Harry Bronson. These mines not only keep our roads safe in the Winter for millions of commuters, but they employ hundreds of American workers and help build strong economically sustainable communities. I am proud we got this done before the end of session for our families here in the Finger Lakes Region.”
New York State salt mines employ union members, who are paid fair middle-class wages and benefits. These workers spend their salary here in New York and pay taxes here in New York. This bill not only supports these workers but also has a positive economic impact on the New York State economy.
Mario Cilento, President of the New York State AFL-CIO said, “The Buy American Rock Salt bill not only supports union workers, who are paid fair middle-class wages and benefits, it supports our state’s economy. It will ensure that our tax dollars will be used to create jobs and advance production right here at home. I want to thank Assemblymember Bronson for his ongoing support on this critical issue. We will continue our efforts to ensure it is signed into law.”
Requiring New York State agencies and authorities to procure domestically mined salt will level the playing field for New York employers with foreign mines that have competitive advantages because they often have substandard labor benefits and costs.
“On behalf of over 300 Union employees and the entire workforce of over 400 employees at our New York based facility serving hundreds of communities throughout the state keeping our roads safe all winter long, we applaud Assembly Member Bronson, Senator Kennedy, Senator Cooney, Senator Gallivan, Assemblymember Byrnes and all of their Senate and Assembly colleagues for passing this critical legislation. We also appreciate the support of Bob Duffy at the Greater Rochester Chamber of Commerce and Laura Lane at the Livingston County Area Chamber of Commerce. Lastly, a very special thanks go out to our friends in labor who fought hard to pass this bill and make it a reality,” said the Executive Committee of American Rock Salt Company. “This is a time when we should be doing all we can to strengthen the foundations of our domestic and in-state supply chains while promoting New York businesses and protecting New York jobs. The Buy American Rock Salt Act does just that. Well done.”
Greater Rochester Chamber of Commerce President and CEO Bob Duffy said, “Ensuring that lawmakers do all they can to promote economic growth and prosperity among New York companies is critically important to our State’s success. Thanks to the great work of Assembly Member Bronson, Senator Cooney, Senator Gallivan, Assemblywoman Byrnes, and Senator Kennedy, that mission was accomplished through the passage of this bill. Good paying jobs, an edge for New York businesses against foreign competition, and helping Upstate companies grow – this bill’s passage means all of that and more for New York. Greater Rochester Chamber is proud to have been a leading voice on getting this bill through the Legislature, and we are grateful to companies like American Rock Salt and to our region’s State Delegation for working to make it happen.”