Marangoni Tread North America’s Retread Instead campaign to promote the use of retreads over cheaper foreign tires has launched what it calls an "aggressive" Senate letter-writing campaign to reach legislators.

The campaign aims to educate and inform U.S. senators about the following points:

  1. The urgency of making sure that the United States International Trade Commission at all times has a full complement of commissioners to ensure fair and balanced determinations.
  2. The well over 60,000 U.S. jobs in retreading and related industries that are being threatened by the importation of non retreadable truck and bus tires from China that are sold at below fair market value.
  3. The environmental impact of non retreadable truck tires that is evidenced by the millions of used tires being sent to our landfills each year.
  4. The need to conserve our natural resources by using new premium, high-quality truck and bus tires that can be repaired, retreaded and run multiple times before having to be replaced, saving millions of pounds of raw materials each year

The empty seat on the ITC board is important because it allowed the five-member commission to reach a 3-2 decision against imposing tariffs on cheap tires from China. In 2016, Dean Pinkert recused himself from the truck tire investigation and has since vacated his seat on the ITC board. If Pinkert had voted as he had previously, for tariffs, the result would have likely been a tie, and that would have meant the tariffs would have been imposed, according to Marangoni.

The resulting ruling against tariffs was a shock to the tire industry, because an investigation by the Commerce Department determined that commercial truck and bus tires imported from China are benefitting from subsidies from the Chinese government. A tariff on those cheap imported tires could have helped level the playing field for American businesses, according to proponents of the tariffs. (Read more about the tariff and ITC issue here.)

The campaign is time-sensitive, according to Marangoni, and it is urging industry leaders to go to and review the letter. Participants can choose to let Retread Instead send the letter on their behalf, or they can download the letter and send it personally.

“Gene Walker, vice president of Premier Rubber Company, has been a major supporter of Retread Instead since its inception,” said Retread Instead Spokesperson Ron Elliott. “We need more industry leaders like Gene to join the campaign and reach out to their U.S. Senators and request that they fill all open positions at the United States International Trade Commission without delay and well in advance of a possible ruling by the United States Court of International Trade.”