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Brindisi pushes legislation that would require DOD to buy American-made flatware

By Eric Reinhardt

Date:

U.S. Representative Anthony Brindisi (D–Utica) on Sept. 3 spoke to a gathering at Sherrill Manufacturing in Sherrill, urging congressional leadership to include his bill focused on stainless-steel procurement in the final version of the National Defense Authorization Act. (Photo credit: Rep. Brindisi Twitter)

SHERRILL — U.S. Representative Anthony Brindisi (D–Utica) on Sept. 3 joined employees at Sherrill Manufacturing Inc. to ask Congress to include his Support Procurement of our Nation’s Stainless Steel Act (SPOONSS) in the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) conference bill.

The U.S. Department of Defense (DOD) was previously required to purchase American-made flatware, but due to a supply problem, this obligation was removed in the 2007 NDAA. Since then, domestic flatware and dinnerware production “has rebounded,” Brindisi’s office contends. 

The congressman says he “successfully amended” the House version of the NDAA to include this legislation and now wants congressional leadership to include the provision in the final bill.

Sherrill Manufacturing produces several lines of flatware under the Liberty Tabletop brand and continues to grow its workforce and revenue, Brindisi’s office said. Liberty Tabletop is a division of Sherrill Manufacturing.

 “This is a no-brainer,” Brindisi said about SPOONSS, in a Sept. 3 news release. “Congress constantly talks about bringing back and keeping good-paying American jobs. This actually gets it done. [U.S. Senate Majority Leader] Mitch McConnell and other Congressional leaders owe it to our soldiers and to our manufacturers, like Liberty Tabletop, to get this done,” he said.

Brindisi’s bill would reinstate the Berry Amendment’s long-standing DOD domestic-sourcing requirement for stainless-steel flatware. The congressman secured this provision in the NDAA, his office said. 

The SPOONSS Act has been introduced in previous years but was defeated each time it came to a vote, per Brindisi’s release.

“Thank you to Congressman Brindisi for his tireless advocacy on this bill,” Greg Owens, CEO of Sherrill Manufacturing, said. “This legislation is about keeping jobs in America and will create more good-paying jobs for Oneida County. It is time for Congress to do the right thing and get this bill to the President’s desk.”