Lawmakers Call On Congressional Leadership To Get Legislation To Provide $52 Billion In Grant Funding To President’s Desk Immediately
Washington, D.C. – U.S. Senators John Hickenlooper and Michael Bennet joined over 140 lawmakers in a letter urging Congressional leadership to quickly send the $52 billion dollars needed to fund the Creating Helpful Incentives for the Production of Semiconductors (CHIPS) for America Act to President Biden’s desk.
“[W]e write today to urge you to preserve the full $52 billion included in USICA during the conference process to implement the CHIPS Act. Securing this funding as soon as possible will help address severe shortages in the semiconductor supply chain and reestablish American leadership in global semiconductor manufacturing,” wrote Hickenlooper, Bennet, and the lawmakers.
Despite the importance of semiconductors for America’s innovation economy, our share of the semiconductor industry has gone from 37 percent in 1990 to just 12 percent today. The CHIPS for America Act would restore semiconductor manufacturing in America by increasing federal incentives to stimulate advanced chip manufacturing, enabling cutting-edge research and development, securing the supply chain, creating skilled jobs, and bringing greater transparency to the microelectronics ecosystem.
An amendment based on the CHIPS Act passed as part of the Fiscal Year 2021 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) to enable the building and modernization of semiconductor manufacturing facilities in America, but the effort has yet to receive the billions of dollars necessary to implement the reforms. Both the U.S. House of Representatives and the U.S. Senate have each passed their own versions of broad bipartisan competition bills that both include the full $52 billion needed to comprehensively implement the CHIPS Act.
Hickenlooper, Bennet, and the lawmakers continued: “The funding and structural reforms included in CHIPS will create a more resilient domestic semiconductor supply chain which will help prevent future shortages that cause GDP drag, job losses, more expensive consumer goods, and national security vulnerabilities.”
In addition to Hickenlooper and Bennet the letter was signed by U.S. Senators Mark Warner, John Cornyn, Mark Kelly, Mike Crapo, Gary Peters, Robert Portman, Maggie Hassan, Marsha Blackburn, Kyrsten Sinema, Steve Daines, Debbie Stabenow, Ben Sasse, Catherine Cortez-Masto, Bill Cassidy, Susan Collins, Mitt Romney, Raphael Warnock, Amy Klobuchar, and Ron Wyden.
The text of the letter is available HERE and below.
Dear Majority Leader Schumer, Speaker Pelosi, Minority Leader McConnell, and Minority Leader McCarthy:
We write today in strong support of the bicameral agreement for the House and Senate to go to conference on all titles of the United States Innovation and Competition Act (USICA). As original cosponsors and supporters of the Creating Helpful Incentives for the Production of Semiconductors (CHIPS) for America Act, we write today to urge you to preserve the full $52 billion included in USICA during the conference process to implement the CHIPS Act. Securing this funding as soon as possible will help address severe shortages in the semiconductor supply chain and reestablish American leadership in global semiconductor manufacturing.
From both an economic and national security perspective, it is imperative that the United States rapidly expand domestic semiconductor manufacturing capacity. While the United States’ global share of semiconductor manufacturing capacity was 37 percent in 1990, that number has fallen to an alarming 12 percent today. Without support, the United States risks falling further behind other countries, most notably China. The funding and structural reforms included in CHIPS will create a more resilient domestic semiconductor supply chain which will help prevent future shortages that cause GDP drag, job losses, more expensive consumer goods, and national security vulnerabilities. In addition, this vital funding will promote more secure technology supply chains globally, including by advancing collaboration efforts between the U.S. and close allies and partners on the adoption of secure and trusted products.
Fortunately, the $52 billion in appropriations contained in USICA provides an effective funding structure that will allow the United States to emerge from this crisis stronger. This provision was already passed by the Senate on a bipartisan basis as part of USICA and has the support of a broad and diverse coalition. We must move with urgency to secure this funding to create well-paying jobs and support workers and their families at new and existing facilities. The USICA conference process will allow important unresolved issues to be reconciled in a bipartisan, bicameral way and we urge you to immediately begin negotiations to allow votes in the House and Senate as soon as possible.
We appreciate your attention to this important matter and look forward to working with you to reestablish American leadership in semiconductor technology.