Sen. Murphy questions federal compliance of ‘Buy American’ laws

Westfair Online

U.S. Sen. Chris Murphy has asked the U.S. Government Accountability Office to investigate the federal government compliance with laws and regulations that require U.S. agencies to give priority to buying American-made goods over products made in other countries.

Murphy, who is the ranking member of U.S. Senate Appropriations Legislative Branch Subcommittee, raised the concern that foreign manufacturing was having a serious impact on Connecticut shipbuilders and aerospace manufacturers that rely on government contracts for their business. Murphy’s office noted that a 2015 report by the Department of Defense’s Inspector General that found 40 percent of U.S. Navy contracts reviewed violated either the Buy American Act or the Berry Amendment, which require federal agencies to give priority to products manufactured in this country.

“I am concerned about the continuing erosion of America’s manufacturing base,” the Connecticut Democrat wrote. “I believe that weak enforcement of our domestic government procurement laws, coupled with statutory flexibility built into those laws, contribute to this decline, and will impede future growth.”