HEARING ON UNINTENDED CONSEQUENCES OF
July 23, 2002
Good morning. Thank you very much for inviting me to this hearing. My name is Robert Herrman. I am a machine technician at A.J. Rose Manufacturing Company. I am also a member of the United States Steelworkers Local # 735-14, the union that represents 250 workers at A.J. Rose.
Over the past 9 years that I've been with the company, A.J. Rose has been a growing company. With this growth, the company has added jobs to the workforce to keep up with the pace of new business. But since March, business has been slowing down. I know we've lost customers due to the increased cost of steel, and that other customers may drop out too.
As an employee of A.J. Rose, I am very concerned. I know that when the profits of the company go down, this will affect my wage rate in the future. It definitely means less pay, less benefits, and it probably means fewer jobs.
The steel tariffs were supposed to protect American businesses and save American jobs. So why do the steel mills deserve to stay in business more than A.J. Rose? And why are jobs at steel mills more important than the 250 jobs of the union associates who work at A.J. Rose? I don't understand a policy that helps some U.S. jobs at the expense of other U.S. jobs.