Politics

Fort Smith Home Builders Share Industry Challenges with Boozman as Inflation Rate Continues to Climb

Tim Mays and Colton Mays show Senator Boozman some of the homes under construction in Fort Smith.

FORT SMITH, AR — On the heels of new inflation numbers,U.S. Senator John Boozman (R-AR) is continuing his series of conversations with Arkansas business leaders to learn how the current economic climate is impacting industries in The Natural State. On Tuesday, Boozman met with Fort Smith-area home builders about their struggles with skyrocketing inflation, supply chain disruptions and the shortage of skilled labor.

“Arkansans are paying higher prices across the board as a result of President Biden’s reckless tax-and-spending plan. Instead of doubling down on failed policies that have increased the burdens on hardworking families and American businesses, I urge the president to abandon his agenda and prioritize solutions that deliver relief from runaway inflation, fix supply chains and encourage workforce growth and development,” Boozman said.

“We appreciate Senator Boozman taking time to understand the impact of labor and supply shortages on our industry. These national issues aren’t just impacting builders, they are impacting millions of Americans who are delaying and dropping out of the housing market. Homeownership should not be a unique privilege, but the cost of materials, delays in supplies and rising cost of housing will continue to keep people out of homeownership if we don’t get control of them,” said Stephanie Stipins, Executive Director of Arkansas Home Builders Association and Greater Fort Smith Area Home Builders Association.

The National Association of Home Builders attributed higher construction costs as a leading factor in the continued decline in builder confidence. This is due, in part, to supply chain challenges. Stipins said in Fort Smith, builders are being told to expect delays up to 15 weeks for windows, even from local suppliers.

Boozman championed a Senate-passed solution to easing supply chain disruptions. The Ocean Shipping Reform Act would modernize federal regulations for the global shipping industry to protect American exporters from unfair penalties and practices in the industry. The Senate unanimously passed this legislation in March.

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