Cleveland's Allan Jones Backs Trump Tariffs; Says Hardwick Clothes Operating At Disadvantage

Tuesday, July 24, 2018
Allan Jones
Allan Jones

Cleveland businessman Allan Jones, owner of the 138-year-old Hardwick Clothes, is calling for tariffs, especially on clothing imported from Mexico and Canada. Mr. Jones, chairman of Jones Capitalcorp, LLC, rescued Hardwick from bankruptcy in 2014. He said he pumped millions of his own money into the venture "in an attempt to salvage the company, maintain employment for the company’s 300-plus employees, and keep America’s oldest tailor-made clothing manufacturer in business." 

Mr. Jones said, “When the Tariff of 1824 was instituted, the goal was admirable: protect woolen mills in America,” He said that a century later in 1930, Hardwick Woolen Mills in Cleveland, Tn., was the largest clothing manufacturer and mill in the world.

When the company leadership saw the decline of mills, Hardwick sold the milling business to Burlington Fabrics to concentrate on their tailored clothing.

Unfortunately, Mr. Jones said, “While fine woolen fabric mills in America have since ceased to exist, the tariffs have not. Today, manufacturers based on both of America’s borders - Canada and Mexico - pay no tariffs on imported fabrics (which come primarily from Europe), whereas American manufacturers pay a 25 percent tariff on the same goods, only to see Canadian and Mexican manufacturers ship their tailored clothing tariff-free to America.”

Though there is a rebate program through the Farm Bill, the construction of the rebate is based on historical purchases - not actual purchases - and goes disproportionately to two manufacturers that receive much more rebate than they have paid in tariffs, he said.

Mr. Jones said, “This isn’t a rebate. It’s a subsidy that places other American clothing manufacturers at a distinct disadvantage.”

One of these disadvantaged, he said, is Hardwick, America’s oldest tailor-made clothing company that was founded on July 28, 1880. He stated, “The company has survived a mountain of obstacles during its 138-year history, including two major fires, two World Wars, the Great Depression, and even leisure suits! Today, the company is penalized by tariffs on raw materials necessary to manufacture clothing and an unfair, disproportionate rebate subsidizing the company’s competitors.”

In an effort to level the playing field for all, Mr. Jones said he is requesting that during NAFTA negotiations, a tariff of 25 percent be placed on all imported tailored clothing - menswear in particular - especially clothing that is imported from Canada and Mexico, and any rebate be based on actual, not historical, purchases. This will allow Hardwick to pay higher wages and allow the company to grow its market, he said.

Mr. Jones said, “After NAFTA, there was a giant sucking sound, with tailored clothing manufacturing moving to Canada and Mexico, while Hardwick remained an American company. Now, we’re seeking a level playing field. The future of the tailored clothing industry in America depends on it."

“Trump needs a substantial negotiating tool,” Mr. Jones concluded, “and we need to get out of the way and let Trump be Trump. He’ll manhandle these tariffs and bring about a level playing field for all American manufacturers.”


Latest Hamilton County Arrest Report

Catoosa County Proposes Balanced Budget With No Tax Rate Increase That Addresses Citizen’s Concerns

Walker And Whitfield Counties Each Have Another Virus Death; Georgia Has 91 More Deaths


Here is the latest Hamilton County arrest report: ANDERS, MARGARET NAOMI 407 Chapman St Athens, 373033828 Age at Arrest: 28 years old Arresting Agency: Hamilton County Booked for Previous ... (click for more)

The Catoosa County Board of Commissioners will consider a proposed balanced budget for fiscal year 2021 that addresses citizen concerns for enhancements to public safety services and infrastructure ... (click for more)

Georgia state health officials reported on Friday there have been an additional 91 deaths due to the coronavirus. The new total is 4,117. There were 4,109 new cases as that total reached ... (click for more)



Breaking News

Latest Hamilton County Arrest Report

Here is the latest Hamilton County arrest report: ANDERS, MARGARET NAOMI 407 Chapman St Athens, 373033828 Age at Arrest: 28 years old Arresting Agency: Hamilton County Booked for Previous Charges or Other Reason(s) --- ARNOLD, TRACY DARRYL 9517 LOT A BARBEE ROAD SODDY DAISY, 37379 Age at Arrest: 55 years old Arresting Agency: Soddy Daisy FAILURE TO APPEAR ... (click for more)

Catoosa County Proposes Balanced Budget With No Tax Rate Increase That Addresses Citizen’s Concerns

The Catoosa County Board of Commissioners will consider a proposed balanced budget for fiscal year 2021 that addresses citizen concerns for enhancements to public safety services and infrastructure while adopting the property tax rollback rate. The proposed General Fund budget is $34,200,174 and includes a $3 million transfer to a new Capital Projects Fund. Prior to the transfer, ... (click for more)

Opinion

Congratulations To Marco Perez

Congratulations to Marco Perez on winning the District 2 School Board race. Marco and his team ran a well organized campaign. It is my hope that Marco will take that same organizational skill to continue the improvement of our public schools for the benefit of our nearly 45,000 students. Thanks to my incredible campaign team that worked tirelessly. Thanks as well to the many ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: The Saturday Funnies

These two hunters are out in the woods when one of them collapses. He doesn't seem to be breathing and his eyes are glazed. The other guy takes out his phone and calls the emergency services. He gasps: "My friend is dead! What can I do?" The operator says: "Calm down, I can help. First, let's make sure he's dead." In the silence that follows, allow me to welcome you to this ... (click for more)

Sports

Chattanooga FC Strengthens Roster With New Players Before NISA Fall Season

When Chattanooga’s Football Club travels north for the NISA fall conference opener, there will be some new faces on the trip. The club is proud to announce the signing of defender Shaun Russell in addition to last month’s signing of midfielder David Koloko. Here’s a deeper dive into the new players joining the first team: David Koloko: Koloko is a 6’1” midfielder/defender ... (click for more)

Red Wolves Notch MLS Rookie Tanner Dieterich On Loan

The Chattanooga Red Wolves reach an agreement with MLS Nashville SC to acquire Midfielder Tanner Dieterich on loan. Tanner Dieterich, 22, is a Tennessee native who was selected by Nashville SC as the 28th overall pick in the MLS SuperDraft on Feb. 25, 2020. Dieterich, a Clemson soccer alum, was a three-year captain of the team and notched 75 appearances over the course of his ... (click for more)