Maine congressional delegation visiting New Balance factory

SKOWHEGAN, Maine (AP) — Maine’s congressional delegation is visiting a factory that’s going to benefit from a “Made-in-USA” provision for sneakers for military recruits.

Rep. Bruce Poliquin and Sens. Susan Collins and Angus King are going to the New Balance factory in Skowhegan on Wednesday to celebrate provision that’s included in the defense spending bill, which President Barack Obama is expected to sign.

Poliquin marshaled the effort in the House along with Democratic Rep. Niki Tsongas of Massachusetts.

The provision applies the Berry Amendment to athletic shoes. That amendment requires the defense department to give preference to home-grown products.

The provision benefits Massachusetts-based New Balance, the only major athletic shoe company making its footwear in the United States. New Balance employs 900 people at three Maine factories in Skowhegan, Norridgewock and Norway in Maine.

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