The bill's original sponsors include Representatives Lynn Jenkins (R-KS) and Joseph Crowley (D-NY), as well as a record number of 28 original co-sponsors.
The United States imposes a hidden tax on footwear. This bill will remove this burdensome tax on about one third of all footwear. More specifically, if passed, AFA would eliminate approximately $800 million in duties on lower-priced children's footwear, outdoor shoes and some athletic. The bill continues to have wide bipartisan support, including Members of the Ways and Means Committee, which oversees footwear issues.
"On behalf of the over 100 footwear companies FDRA represents, we thank Representatives Jenkins and Crowley for their support of the industry and footwear consumers," stated FDRA Chairman Blake Kruger. "For all too long, American consumers have been hit with the hidden shoe tax. Worse, this tax is regressive, hitting working class families and children the hardest on a product everyone must purchase. This common sense legislation would help relieve this unnecessary tax burden on these families."
An astonishing $2.3 billion in duties were paid on footwear in 2012. The Affordable Footwear Act would go a long way toward addressing this added cost burden on working families by eliminating duties on shoes with the highest duty rates. If successful, this bill will generate additional savings for consumers, drive more shoe sales and provide additional opportunities for job growth in the U.S. footwear industry.
Addressing the issue of a gridlocked Congress, FDRA President Matt Priest added: "While many think the two parties can agree on nothing, we are pleased that this reintroduction has more original cosponsors, from both parties, than ever before. We are also pleased to see tax reform being discussed, which could provide a platform to move AFA through Congress. Both of these are a good sign we will see positive traction on AFA and other footwear issues this Congress."