Share this article

print logo

Erie County to revamp proposed Made in America law

Erie County officials are likely to move forward with a new policy that requires county government-bought products and materials be made in America.

But it's not going to be the law originally proposed by County Legislator Ted Morton, R-Cheektowaga.

Morton's proposed law, which originally passed in the Legislature by a 9-1 vote, would require county contractors to guarantee the goods or materials they provide are manufactured or produced in the United States.

Poloncarz vetoed the local law last week, calling the law ambiguous and unenforceable. The Legislature failed to override the veto Thursday. While all six members of the Republican-supported majority voted in favor, all five Democrats voted against it. Eight votes were needed to override Poloncarz's veto.

“While I’m disappointed the Legislature was unable to override the veto of the Made in America Act, I will be reaching out to the county executive so that we can work together and introduce a compromise bill to ensure we are doing all we can to help grow our local economy,” Morton said in a statement.

Can a local law require Erie County to buy American-made products?

Poloncarz said he supports the overall concept of having county-bought products made in the United States, but that any such law needs to be vetted by the county's Division of Purchasing and other outside attorneys. He also said he was consulting with the state Attorney General's Office to see if any local effort to require American-made purchases is precluded by state law.

"Although I cannot support this law in its current form," Poloncarz said in his letter, "I stand at the ready to work with the Legislature to draft and support a law that accomplishes the intentions of this piece of legislation ... Legislation that will accomplish what we seek, withstand legal scrutiny and stand the test of time."

He issued a new statement on Thursday reiterating his position.

There are no comments - be the first to comment