* The President and Congressional leaders must negotiate in good faith and with urgency to reach an agreement to avoid the Fiscal Cliff. MLC members favor a comprehensive agreement that addresses entitlement-program cost reductions in a way that sustains these programs over the long term, as well as increased taxes for high-income individuals .
* Policy-makers should look to limit the impact of tax increases on small and mid-sized, family-owned manufacturing companies, which are frequently taxed at individual, rather than corporate tax rates due to their status as S corporations or partnerships.
* Policy-makers should extend the payroll tax cut in order to avoid burdening middle-class families and increasing the likelihood of another recession.
* Policy-makers should increase the bonus depreciation on tangible property and retract the proposed changes to eliminate Safe Harbor for Routine Maintenance. Forcing manufacturers to depreciate these assets over extended periods reduces their incentive to invest in equipment that increases competitiveness and productivity, and reduces the production of large capital equipment.* Policy-makers should make permanent the Research and Development Tax Credits that are due to expire. These tax credits are the single most-effective element of government's industrial policy, encouraging manufacturers to invest in new technologies that improve productivity and stimulate the economy. * Policy-makers should avoid reductions in military spending, as such spending supports manufacturing and innovation. * Policy-makers should allow extended unemployment benefits to expire. This would encourage more qualified workers to seek employment sooner rather than waiting for benefits to run out. However, Council members would welcome extended unemployment benefits in exchange for comprehensive reforms in entitlement spending. * Specific, scheduled reductions in entitlement spending must be part of the Fiscal Cliff agreement. Policy-makers can no longer defer action on these important reforms, which are needed to reduce government spending and restore confidence in the economy. Among other reforms, policy-makers should consider raising the cap on Social Security withholding, and gradually extending the age for Social Security eligibility. The MLC encourages other members of the manufacturing community and the nation to raise their voice to help protect the industry's vital role in economic prosperity. For more information, visit www.Manufacturing-Executive.com and www.ManufacturingLeadershipCouncil.com. About the Manufacturing Leadership Council The Manufacturing Leadership Council, a unit of Frost & Sullivan, offers an integrated portfolio of leadership networking, information, and professional development products, programs, and services for industrial executives worldwide. The Manufacturing Leadership Council's mission is to help senior executives define and shape a better future for themselves, their organizations, and the industry at large. The Manufacturing Leadership Council's integrated portfolio consists of the Manufacturing Executive website, an online global business network; the Manufacturing Leadership Council, an invitation-only executive organization; the annual Manufacturing Leadership Summit conference; the Manufacturing Leadership 100 Awards program; and the Manufacturing Leadership Journal. For more information, visit http://www.manufacturing-executive.com/index.jspa Manufacturing Leadership Council members include representatives from companies such as Advanced Micro Devices, AT&T, Baxter Healthcare, Campbell Soup Company, Cisco Systems, Colgate Palmolive, Cummins, Dell, Dow Chemical, DuPont, Eaton, Ford, General Dynamics, Graphicast, Kennametal, Kohler, Lion-Vallen Industries, Lockheed Martin, Oracle, Owens Corning, Procter & Gamble, S&S Hinge Company, Steinwall, Inc., and VirTex Assembly Services. About Frost & Sullivan Frost & Sullivan, the Growth Partnership Company, works in collaboration with clients to leverage visionary innovation that addresses the global challenges and related growth opportunities that will make or break today's market participants.