U.S. Senator Chris Coons of Delaware

Stay Informed

Required Information


All blog posts created by Legislative Team
  • Manufacturing Update for September 2015

    Manufacturing Jobs for America monthly manufacturing update



    Vice President Biden Announces New Integrated Photonics Manufacturing Innovation Hub in Rochester, New York
    Vice President Biden announced that the Research Foundation for the State University of New York (RF SUNY) will lead a new Manufacturing Innovation Institute to secure U.S. leadership in manufacturing integrated photonics. These emerging technologies have the potential to transform many industries—from creating “needleless” tests for medical conditions like diabetes, to increasing the carrying capacity of broadband communications ten times over.
    More: White House Release

    Key Senate Committee Passes Bipartisan Bill from Coons, Roberts, Schumer to Spur Private Research and Development
    The U.S. Senate Finance Committee unanimously passed bipartisan legislation to allow startup companies and small businesses to access the successful Research and Development Tax Credit. The Innovators Job Creation Act would help startups and other small companies take advantage of valuable R&D tax credits that are currently unavailable to them. The legislation, led by U.S. Senators Chris Coons (D-Del.), Pat Roberts (R-Kan.), and Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.), now heads to the full Senate for consideration.
    More: Coons Release

    One Hand Tied Behind Our Backs: Why America Must Do Much More to Curb China’s Dangerous Innovation Mercantilism
    Ahead of Chinese President Xi Jinping’s visit to the United States later this month, please join ITIF on September 17 for an expert panel discussion exploring the ramifications of China’s economic and trade strategies and delving into potential remedies and responses.
    More: Information Technology and Innovation Foundation 

    U.S. Secretary of Commerce Penny Pritzker Announces Designation of 12 New Manufacturing Communities Under the Investing in Manufacturing Communities Partnership Program
    U.S. Secretary of Commerce Penny Pritzker announced 12 new communities that have received designations under the Obama Administration’s Investing in Manufacturing Communities Partnership (IMCP) initiative. In May 2014, Secretary Pritzker announced the first 12 communities to receive the designation under this U.S. Commerce Department-led program, which is designed to accelerate the resurgence of manufacturing in communities nationwide by supporting the development of long-term economic development strategies.
    More: Economic Development Administration

    Pentagon Joins Silicon Valley in 'Flexible' Tech Hub
    The Pentagon is building a tech hub in Silicon Valley to help create new gadgetry for the supersoldiers of the future as well as tech-savvy consumers. According to the White House, the project seeks to foster "American leadership in manufacturing technologies from smart bandages to self-monitoring weapons systems to wearable devices." It brings together the electronics industry and the high-precision printing industry in a "FlexTech Alliance" to create sensors that conform to the curves of a human body or stretch across an object or structure. The $171 million plan announced by Defense Secretary Ashton Carter will get $75 million in federal funds, and bring together electronics and semiconductor companies like Applied Materials, Apple, United Technologies, Hewlett-Packard and Qualcomm with users of the technology such as Boeing, General Motors, the Cleveland Clinic, Corning and Motorola.
    More: Business Insider

    Senate Passes Baldwin, Kaine, Portman Career Readiness Amendment
    The Senate has unanimously passed an amendment to the Every Child Achieves Act of 2015 introduced by U.S. Senators Tammy Baldwin (D-WI), Tim Kaine (D-VA), and Rob Portman (R-OH) to help ensure students are ready for postsecondary education and the workforce. The amendment encourages states to create work-based learning opportunities through partnerships with businesses that allow students to earn industry-recognized credentials and credit for postsecondary education. By incorporating career readiness indicators into their state accountability systems, states will have the opportunity to recognize schools that are successfully preparing students for postsecondary education and the workforce through tools like technical skills training and college credits. The amendment strengthens the Career Ready Act, which was incorporated into the Every Child Achieves Act of 2015 after being introduced by Baldwin, Kaine, and Portman earlier this year.
    More: Baldwin Release

    Booker, Gillibrand, Murray, Coons, Peters Introduce Bill to Scale-Up Investments for Small Advanced Manufacturing Businesses
    U.S. Sens. Cory Booker (D-NJ), Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY), Patty Murray (D-WA), Chris Coons (D-DE), and Gary Peters (D-MI) today introduced the Scale-Up Manufacturing Investment Company (SUMIC) Act of 2015, legislation that increases access to capital for entrepreneurs looking to scale-up and commercialize their advanced manufacturing innovations. The SUMIC Act creates a program that allows private investment firms to leverage funds provided by the government to help emerging manufacturers commercialize their products. The program, modeled on the Small Business Administration’s (SBA) Small Business Investment Companies (SBIC) program, would allow approved participating investment firms to invest in securities and issue debentures to raise capital that would then be invested into emerging manufacturers’ businesses. Any fees, interest, and profits received from the debentures and securities investments would offset the costs of the program.
    More: Booker Release

    Reed Seeks to Extend Cost-Effective, Job-Saving Layoff Prevention Act
    In an effort to ensure employers can maintain a skilled workforce, and help workers keep their jobs during a temporary business decline, U.S. Senator Jack Reed introduced the Layoff Prevention Extension Act of 2015, a bill to extend the financing and grant provisions for the successful “work sharing” law Reed authored as part of the Middle Class Tax Relief and Job Creation Act of 2012.  As a result of Senator Reed’s efforts, an estimated $500 million in federal funding was made available to help states adopt or expand a short-term compensation program alternative to layoffs.
    More: Reed Release

    Kaine Introduces Jobs Act to Expand Pell Grants for Workforce Training Programs
    U.S. Senator Tim Kaine, co-chair of the Senate Career and Technical Education (CTE) Caucus, introduced the Jumpstart Our Businesses By Supporting Students (JOBS) Act, legislation that would amend the Higher Education Act by expanding Pell Grant eligibility to students enrolled in short-term job training programs. Under current law, Pell Grants - needs-based grants for low-income and working students— can only be applied toward programs that are over 600 clock hours or at least 15 weeks in length, even though many job training programs are shorter term. The JOBS Act would expand Pell Grant eligibility to students enrolled in high-quality job training programs that are at least 8 weeks in length and lead to industry-recognized credentials and certificates. According to the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, 3.7 million U.S. jobs are currently vacant because of a shortage of qualified workers. The JOBS Act would address this shortage by helping workers afford the skills training and credentials that are in high-demand in today’s job market. 
    More: Kaine Release

    Peters-Alexander-Stabenow Vehicle Innovation Act Advances in Senate
    Bipartisan legislation introduced by U.S. Senators Gary Peters (D-MI), Lamar Alexander (R-TN) and Debbie Stabenow (D-MI) advanced in the Senate today when it was included in the Energy Policy Modernization Act of 2015 approved by the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee. The Vehicle Innovation Act (VIA) promotes investments in research and development of clean vehicle and advanced safety technologies that will create more fuel-efficient vehicles, reduce our nation’s dependence on foreign oil and support American auto manufacturers.
    More: Peters Release 

    Senate, House Leaders Introduce Bipartisan, Bicameral Bill to Protect Trade Secrets
    Senate Judiciary Committee members Chris Coons, D-Del., Orrin Hatch, R-Utah, Jeff Flake, R-Ariz., Sheldon Whitehouse, D-R.I., Thom Tillis, R-N.C., together with Senator Tammy Baldwin, D-Wisc. and House Members Rep. Doug Collins, R-Ga., and Jerrold Nadler, D-N.Y., today introduced bipartisan, bicameral legislation Wednesday to help combat the loss of hundreds of billions of dollars each year in the United States to the theft of corporate trade secrets. The Defend Trade Secrets Act would empower companies to protect their trade secrets in federal court by creating a federal private right-of-action.
    More: Coons Release



    China's Currency Creep: The Country's Devaluation of the Yuan Poses Potential Problems for the Rest of the World, Including the U.S.
    When China devalued its yuan currency by nearly 2 percent Tuesday, the country's central bank suggested it was merely a one-time adjustment that wasn't cause for greater concern. But Beijing came out swinging as the week progressed, first with a 1.6 percent cut on Wednesday followed by another 1.1 percent devaluation on Thursday, leading to China's biggest three-day currency drop in decades. The moves set the stage for international trade and currency battles and plenty of headaches for the U.S., which may get the short end of the economic stick from China's fiscal finessing
    MoreU.S. News and World Report

    Negotiators Hope to Wrap Up Trans-Pacific Partnership Talks this Month
    After a disappointing round of talks ended last week in Hawaii without resolution, negotiators of the 12-nation Trans-Pacific Partnership are hoping to meet later this month to try again to wrap up one of the world's biggest free-trade agreements.
    MoreLA Times

    A Critique of CRS’s “U.S. Manufacturing in International Perspective”
    The future of the U.S. economy depends in part on the health of U.S. manufacturing. Unfortunately, over the last 15 years the U.S. manufacturing sector has declined significantly compared to those of competitor nations. In the face of this decline, congressional action is needed more than ever to reduce the effective corporate tax rate; to boost investment incentives, including for R&D; to better enforce trade rules globally; and to support manufacturing innovation and workforce development.
    More: Information Technology and Innovation Foundation

    Manufacturing Job Loss: Trade, Not Productivity, Is the Culprit
    The United States lost 5 million manufacturing jobs between January 2000 and December 2014. There is a widespread misperception that rapid productivity growth is the primary cause of continuing manufacturing job losses over the past 15 years. Instead, as this report shows, job losses can be traced to growing trade deficits in manufacturing products prior to the Great Recession and then the massive output collapse during the Great Recession.
    More: Economic Policy Institute

    US Industrial Output Rises on Strong Auto Production
    U.S. industrial production rose in July, with a strong gain in automobile manufacturing offsetting lower output from utilities, the Federal Reserve reported Friday. Industrial output increased 0.6% in July, far above the revised 0.1% gain in June. Output of motor vehicles and parts jumped 10.6%. Gains elsewhere in manufacturing rose 0.1%. The strength in autos compensated for a 1.0% drop in the index for utilities. Manufacturing, accounting for about three quarters of total industrial output, has been under pressure from tepid consumer spending and a stronger dollar weighing on exports.
    More: Industry Week

    A New Look at Apprenticeships as a Path to the Middle Class
    With its gleaming classrooms, sports teams and even a pep squad, the Apprentice School that serves the enormous Navy shipyard here bears little resemblance to a traditional vocational education program. And that is exactly the point. While the cheerleaders may double as trainee pipe fitters, electricians and insulators, on weekends they’re no different from college students anywhere as they shout for the Apprentice School Builders on the sidelines. But instead of accumulating tens of thousands of dollars in student debt, Apprentice School students are paid an annual salary of $54,000 by the final year of the four-year program, and upon graduation are guaranteed a job with Huntington Ingalls Industries, the military contractor that owns Newport News Shipbuilding.
    More: New York Times

    FCA CEO, Union Agree That Two-Tier Wages Should Go
    Fiat Chrysler CEO Sergio Marchionne and United Auto Workers President Dennis Williams agree on at least one thing: getting rid of the two-tier wages for hourly workers in the company's U.S. plants. Marchionne and Williams formally opened bargaining a new four-year contract for FCA's 35,700 workers Tuesday. The current contract expires in September.
    More: Manufacturing.net

  • Manufacturing Update for July 2015

    Manufacturing Jobs for America monthly manufacturing update



    Sens. Warner, Blunt Lead Coalition in Introducing Bipartisan Infrastructure Legislation
    U.S. Sens. Mark R. Warner (D-VA) and Roy Blunt (R-MO) led a bipartisan coalition of eleven Senators in introducing legislation to establish a new infrastructure financing authority to help states and localities better leverage private funds to build and maintain the nation’s outdated infrastructure. The Building and Renewing Infrastructure for Development and Growth in Employment (BRIDGE) Act helps to address the nation’s alarming investment shortfall in maintaining and improving our transportation network, water and wastewater systems and energy infrastructure. The legislation would provide an additional financing tool for states and localities to create new jobs here at home while also increasing our nation’s economic competitiveness.
    More: Warner Release

    Senate Passes Murphy ‘Buy American’ Amendment to Boost American Manufacturing
    The U.S. Senate passed US Senator Chris Murphy’s amendment to the National Defense Authorization Act that will increase Congressional oversight of the U.S. Department of Defense (DoD) by requiring more transparency about DoD’s overuse of Buy American Act waivers through the “overseas use” loophole in the law. This Buy American Act loophole currently allows federal agencies to use American taxpayer dollars to purchase goods or services from foreign companies—more than $5 billion worth last year—to the detriment of American businesses.
    More: Murphy Release

    Peters, Stabenow, Alexander Introduce Vehicle Innovation Act
    U.S. Senators Gary Peters (D-MI) and Debbie Stabenow (D-MI), along with Lamar Alexander (R-TN), introduced the bipartisan Vehicle Innovation Act (VIA) to promote investments in research and development of clean vehicle technologies that will create more fuel efficient vehicles, reduce our nation’s dependence on foreign oil, and support American auto manufacturers. The Vehicle Innovation Act reauthorizes the Department of Energy's Vehicle Technologies Program, which works with light duty automobile and medium and heavy duty commercial truck manufacturers and suppliers to conduct research and development to improve fuel efficiency in vehicles.
    More: Peters Release

    Schakowsky, Durbin and Brown: Tax Credits should go to Companies that Invest in American Workers, Not Ship Jobs Overseas
    Rep. Jan Schakowsky (IL-09), Sen. Dick Durbin (IL) and Sen. Sherrod Brown (OH) introduced the Patriot Employer Tax Credit Act, a bill that would provide a tax credit to companies that provide fair wages and good benefits to workers while closing a tax loophole that incentivizes corporations to send jobs overseas. The loophole costs the U.S. Treasury approximately $50 billion each year at a time when outsourced jobs and stagnant wages force more American families to turn to safety net programs to make ends meet. The bill is cosponsored by Representatives Raul Grijalva (AZ-03), Keith Ellison (MN-05), Bobby Rush (IL-01) and Senators Jack Reed (RI), Elizabeth Warren (MA), Bernie Sanders (VT) and Tammy Baldwin (WI).
    More: Schakowsky Release 

    Sen. Markey & Rep. Neal Partner to Create Jobs Rebuilding Crumbling Infrastructure, Boost Investment in Local Projects
    Senator Edward J. Markey (D-Mass.) and Rep. Richard Neal (D-Springfield) today introduced the Bolstering Our Nation’s Deficient Structures (BONDS) Act, legislation that would create jobs helping to rebuild America’s crumbling infrastructure. The BONDS Act provides financing tools to state and local governments to help build bridges, roads, schools and other local critical infrastructure projects. Patterned after the successful Build America Bonds program created in 2009 as part of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, the BONDS Act would allow a state or local government to issue a bond to make a public investment while the federal government provides a subsidy to that state or local government to help pay the interest on the bond. The BONDS Act will revive the Build America Bonds program and make it permanent.
    More: Markey Release

    Hirono Authors Clean Energy Legislation
    Senator Mazie K. Hirono introduced a package of energy bills this week that highlight her commitment to spurring innovation and investment in clean energy in Hawaii and across the country. Included in this package is the Clean Energy Technology Manufacturing and Export Assistance Act (S. 1263)that will help small and medium sized clean technology businesses find new markets in the United States and around the world by creating a Clean Energy Technology Manufacturing and Export Assistance Fund administered by the International Trade Administration.
    More: Hirono Release

    Kaine Reintroduces Middle STEP Act to Create CTE Pilot Program in Middle Schools
    U.S. Senator Tim Kaine, co-chair of the Senate Career and Technical Education (CTE) Caucus, along with U.S. Senators Mark Warner, Barbara Boxer, Sheldon Whitehouse, and Bob Casey, introduced the Middle School Technical Education Program (Middle STEP) Act that would expose middle school students to CTE programs focused on career exploration.
    More: Kaine Release

    Merkley, Cartwright Introduce Bill to Create Green Jobs, Boost Manufacturing
    Today, Oregon’s Senator Jeff Merkley and Representative Matt Cartwright (D-PA) announced the introduction of the Job Creation through Energy Efficient Manufacturing Act in both the U.S. Senate and the U.S. House of Representatives. The bill would create jobs and save money for manufacturers by putting people to work retrofitting manufacturing facilities to be more energy efficient. 
    More: Merkley Release



    Competitiveness Caucus Launches: Bringing Congress Together to Make America More Competitive in the 21st Century
    The hallmark of our nation’s economy has long been the ability of anyone with creativity, ambition and a good work ethic to realize their dreams and move America forward. From the light bulb to the iPhone, the legacy of American invention has shone brightly throughout the world. Yet while our culture of innovation and entrepreneurial spirit remain strong, the policy framework that empowers that spirit to flourish is losing its competitive edge. We now find ourselves at a competitive inflection point. We can either do more to nurture and take advantage of our strengths — only some of which we’ve mentioned — or we can fall behind in the 21st century. In order to support our competitive strengths, we’re launching the bipartisan Senate Competitiveness Caucus, a forum to bring together Democrats and Republicans to address the most pressing issues facing our economy. 
    More: Roll Call

    Export-Import Bank's Cloudy Future Raises Worries of Job Losses
    To kill the Export-Import Bank, all that House Republican leaders opposing it have to do is let the bank's charter expire Tuesday — and they are leaving Friday for the Fourth of July recess without even holding a vote to reauthorize it.The 81-year-old federal agency that helps companies sell their products abroad has been a prime target of conservatives, who want to reduce the size of government and eliminate what they call crony capitalism. Shutting the bank's tap, though, also would eliminate tens of thousands of jobs, say business executives, trade groups and the Obama administration.
    More: LA Times

    How Best to Measure an American-Made Auto?
    This week, Cars.com released its annual American-Made Index, which rates – you guessed it – just how Made in America many popular car models are. What ranked at the top? The Toyota Camry, which is assembled in Kentucky and Indiana. That stands in contrast to another list, produced by American University’s Kogod School of Business, that attempts to answer the same question. The 2015 Made in America Auto Index determined that the most American-made car out there was a six-way tie between a number of GM models – the Buick Enclave, Cadillac CTS, and Chevrolet Corvette among them. So why the discrepancy? The difference is in the details.
    More: Alliance for American Manufacturing Post

    Five Contentious Issues In Upcoming UAW Talks
    Contract talks between the Detroit automakers and the United Auto Workers union get underway next week. Here are five contentious issues to watch as the talks head toward a Sept. 14 contract expiration date.
    More: Manufacturing.net

    Don’t Blame the Robots for Lost Manufacturing Jobs
    In a recent blog we described new research by George Graetz and Guy Michaels that shows the impact of automation technology in productivity statistics. So now there is good evidence that robots are a driver of economic growth. However, this new evidence poses a question: Has productivity growth from robots come at the cost of manufacturing jobs?
    More: Brookings Institute

    The Skills Gap? More Like the Grand Canyon
    These days, getting accepted into Harvard University is slightly easier than finding an industrial maintenance technologist to troubleshoot a complex machine communication problem. In 2013, according to U.S. News and World Report, Harvard had an acceptance rate of 5.7 %. But if you put to work all recent industrial technology maintenance grads, you’d only fill 5.5 % of the available jobs in five of the leading manufacturing states, says James Wall, executive director of the National Institute for Metalworking Skills (NIMS).
    More: Industry Week

  • Manufacturing Update for April/May 2015

    Manufacturing Jobs for America monthly manufacturing update



    Manufacturing Jobs for America – A Plan for Jobs and Growth
    Americans have come a long way from the depths of the Great Recession. Our businesses have created 12.1 million jobs over the past 61 months – the longest sustained stretch of job creation in our nation’s history – and a key driver of that economic recovery has been a sector that helped build this country’s middle class – manufacturing. Still, while American manufacturing is newly resurgent, there’s much more we can do to build on its momentum. That’s why last Congress we started a campaign called Manufacturing Jobs for America (MJA) to focus on four key issues: investing in America’s workforce, expanding access to capital, opening up markets abroad for American goods, and crafting a national manufacturing strategy. As a country, we need to invest in American manufacturing and in American workers, and Manufacturing Jobs for America is our best chance to do that in Congress.
    More: Op-Ed in Republic 3.0, Baldwin Release

    Donnelly Joins Bipartisan Effort to Introduce Reauthorization of Ex-Im Bank
    U.S. Senator Joe Donnelly, who serves on the Senate Banking Committee, joined colleagues in introducing bipartisan legislation that would reform and reauthorize the Export-Import Bank.  Donnelly — along with U.S. Senators Mark Kirk (R-IL), Heidi Heitkamp (D-ND), Lindsey Graham (R-SC), Joe Manchin (D-WV), Roy Blunt (R-MO), Kelly Ayotte (R-NH), and Mark Warner (D-VA)— introduced legislation late Thursday that would reauthorize the Bank’s charter until September 30, 2019 and implement several reforms.
    More: Donnelly Release

    Murphy Introduces Bill to Incentivize Investment in Startup Businesses
    U.S. Senators Chris Murphy (D-Conn.) and Brian Schatz (D-Hawaii) joined Congressmen Steve Chabot (R-Ohio) and Patrick Murphy (D-Fl.) to announce the introduction of the Angel Tax Credit Act, a bill that would provide investors with further incentive to invest significant capital in startup businesses. 
    More: Murphy Release

    Baldwin, Kaine and Portman Introduce Bipartisan Bill to Improve Career Readiness in Schools
    U.S. Senators Tammy Baldwin (D-WI), Tim Kaine (D-VA) and Rob Portman (R-OH), co-chairs of the Senate Career and Technical Education (CTE) Caucus, introduced the Career Ready Act of 2015, legislation that would help ensure students are college and career-ready by strengthening school counseling programs and encouraging states to keep track of career readiness factors implemented in school districts.
    More: Baldwin Release



    Coons Knows Manufacturing Push Needs GOP Support
    Sen. Chris Coons has started a matchmaking service. No, not a dating app. The Delaware Democrat is working with Sen. Tammy Baldwin, D-Wis., to spearhead an effort to bring together Republican and Democratic senators interested in manufacturing jobs — and he’s even discussed the subject in a one-on-one meeting with Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky.
    More: Roll Call Article

    New MIT Report Details Benefits of Investment in Basic Research
    MIT released a report in which faculty and other researchers detail specific impacts, within their fields, of declining federal investment in basic research. The report — “The Future Postponed: Why Declining Investment in Basic Research Threatens a U.S. Innovation Deficit” — was prepared by a committee of MIT researchers and research administrators. Examining how funding cutbacks will affect the future of scientific studies in the U.S., the report highlights opportunities in basic research that could help shape and maintain U.S. economic power, and benefit society.
    More: MIT Release

    MEP Competition Aims to Strengthen Small Manufacturing
    Nonprofit organizations can now compete for $320 million in public and private funding to help small- and medium-sized manufacturers in 12 key states. It’s all part of a national effort to expand technology, innovation, and workforce development services to small manufacturers and bring new American-made products to market.
    More: American Alliance for Manufacturing Release

    NIST and NSF Partner to Launch Industry-University Consortium to Provide Input on National Advanced Manufacturing Research and Development Priorities
    The U.S. Commerce Department's National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) and the National Science Foundation (NSF) announced today that they will establish a consortium to provide private?sector input on national advanced manufacturing research and development priorities. NSF has released a solicitation, calling for applications from organizations to administer the consortium through a cooperative agreement.
    More: NIST Release

    GM to Spend $5.4 Billion in US Factory Makeovers
    General Motors announced $5.4 billion in new U.S. plant upgrades over the next three years, including in three sites in Michigan, the traditional hub of the U.S. auto industry. The biggest investment outlined is $520 million for a site near Lansing to build tools and equipment for GM's future vehicle programs. The move will retain 1,900 jobs at the site, the company's newest plant in North America, the automaker said.
    More: IndustryWeek Release

    Obama Administration Seeks Public Comment on Proposed Rules to Implement the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act
    The Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA), signed by President Obama on July 22, 2014, is the first major reform to federal job training programs in more than 15 years. WIOA is designed to improve the coordination of employment and training services across federal agencies, strengthen collaboration with state and local partners, and provide Americans with increased access to training, education and other support to succeed in the job market and in their careers. Today, the departments of Labor and Education announced five Notices of Proposed Rulemaking to implement WIOA and seek public comment.
    More: Department of Labor Release

    Steel Industry CEOs Warn of a Possible Sectoral Collapse Due to Surging Imports
    CEOs from the country's largest and most important steel companies along with an executive from the nation's top industrial union were on Capitol Hill on March 26 and used the opportunity to raise alarms about surging steel imports. The situation, they told the Steel Caucus in a unified voice, is far worse than anything they have seen in a generation, as foreign nations, awash in 638 million tons of excess capacity, dump subsidized steel into the United States, the world's most open market.
    More: Manufacturing and Technology News

    Manufacturing Jobs for America
    Manufacturing Update
  • Manufacturing Update for March 2015

    Manufacturing Jobs for America monthly manufacturing update



    President Obama launches competition for new textiles-focused manufacturing innovation institute; new White House Supply Chain Innovation Initiative; and funding to support small manufacturers
    On March 18th in Cleveland Ohio, the President announced nearly $500 million in public-private investment to strengthen American manufacturing by investing in cutting-edge technologies through a new, textiles-focused manufacturing institute competition led by the Department of Defense, and by sharpening the capabilities of small manufacturers through Manufacturing Extension Partnership competitions in twelve states. The White House, as detailed in a new report, is also launching a Supply Chain Innovation Initiative focused on building public-private partnerships to strengthen the small U.S. manufacturers that anchor the nation’s supply chains.
    More: White House Press Release

    Sens. Coons, Graham, Gillibrand, Ayotte and Baldwin introduce bipartisan bill to designate ‘Manufacturing Universities’
    U.S. Senators Chris Coons (D-Del.), who leads the Manufacturing Jobs for America campaign, Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.), Kirsten Gillibrand (D-N.Y.), Kelly Ayotte (R-N.H.), and Tammy Baldwin (D-Wis.) introduced bipartisan legislation to help schools strengthen their engineering programs and meet the growing demands of 21st century manufacturing. The bill would designate 25 universities as ‘Manufacturing Universities’ and provide incentives to better align educational offerings with the needs of modern manufacturers. The incentives would be used to bolster universities’ efforts to focus on manufacturing engineering and curricula specifically related to targeted industries.
    More:  Coons Release

    Merkley, Franken introduce legislation to promote education in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM)
    Oregon Senator Jeff Merkley and Senator Al Franken (D-MN) introduced legislation designed to increase student access to courses in STEM education subjects and provide additional resources to recruit, train, and support teachers of these subjects. Merkley and Franken will seek to include the bill in the Senate’s re-write of the No Child Left Behind Act this year. The bill is endorsed by the STEM Education Coalition, an alliance of more than 500 businesses and professional and education organizations.
    More: Merkley Release 

    Klobuchar, Hoeven reintroduce bipartisan legislation to help fuel innovation, boost America’s competitiveness
    Senators Amy Klobuchar (D-MN) and John Hoeven (R-ND) reintroduced bipartisan legislation that would help fuel innovation and boost America’s competitiveness in the global economy. The Innovate America Act would help cut red tape, expand successful education programs, promote U.S. exports in new markets, and help America retain its competitive edge.
    More: Klobuchar Release

    Shaheen introduces legislation to reauthorize Export-Import Bank
    U.S. Senator Jeanne Shaheen introduced legislation to expand and improve the Export-Import Bank to help small businesses sell their products overseas. The Promoting U.S. Jobs through Exports Act of 2015 would provide long term certainty for small businesses by extending the Export-Import Bank through 2022, continuing the bank’s ability to provide businesses with tools they need to compete in the global marketplace and create American jobs. The Promoting U.S. Jobs through Exports Act of 2015 is co-sponsored by Senators Richard Blumenthal (D-CT), Al Franken (D-MN) and Dianne Feinstein (D-CA). 
    More:  Shaheen Release



    Announcement of new MEP Director
    Carroll A. Thomas has been selected to serve as the next MEP Director after a full and open competition and a rigorous review process. Her selection is pending Department of Commerce approval.
    More: NIST Release 

    Sen. Brown announces nearly $450,000 to spur economic development and manufacturing innovation in Lima
    Senator Sherrod Brown (D-OH) announced that the U.S. Department of Commerce’s (DOC) Economic Development Administration (EDA) has awarded $449,950 to the Ohio Energy and Advanced Manufacturing Center in Lima for a Center for High Strain Rate Forming Commercialization. The Center will bring together several manufacturers to spur innovation and commercialization through collaboration and co-investment. In October 2014, Brown wrote to the U.S. Department of Commerce, urging the department to give the Ohio Energy and Advanced Manufacturing Center’s proposal full and fair consideration.
    More: Brown Release

    MADE in MD: Cardin visits AstraZeneca’s Biologics Manufacturing Center, site of more than $200 million investment
    U.S. Senator Ben Cardin toured the AstraZeneca biologics manufacturing center in Frederick as part of his ongoing “Made in Maryland” jobs tour that highlights the diversity of Maryland products and the Marylanders who make them.
    More: Cardin Release

    Brookings Center for Technology Innovation releases new paper - Innovation and manufacturing labor: a value-chain perspective
    In a new paper, Kate Whitefoot and Walter Valdivia offer a fresh insight into the sector’s labor composition and trends by examining employment in manufacturing from a value chain perspective. While the manufacturing sector shed millions of jobs in the 2002-2010 period—a period that included the Great Recession—employment in upstream services expanded 26 percent for market analysis, 13 percent for research and development, and 23 percent for design and technical services. Average wages for these services increased over 10 percent in that period. Going forward, this pattern is likely to be repeated. Technical occupations, particularly in upstream segments are expected to have the largest increases in employment and wages.
    More: Brookings

    Manufacturing Jobs for America
    Manufacturing Update
  • Manufacturing Update for December 2014

    Manufacturing Jobs for America monthly manufacturing update



    Passed by Congress -- Omnibus appropriations bill with manufacturing priorities
    Congress passed a $1.1 trillion omnibus appropriations bill that featured many manufacturing priorities, including:

    • The bill increases funding for the Manufacturing Extension Partnership (MEP), to $130 million.  MEP is the only public-private partnership dedicated to providing technical support and services to small and medium-sized manufacturers.
    • Additional funding for the NSF’s Experimental Program to Stimulate Competitive Research (EPSCoR) – a federal-state partnership that awards competitive funding to states to increase energy-related research investments.
    • The bill includes language recognizing the importance of U.S. bio-manufacturing and directing the NSF to increase support for bio-manufacturing in its advanced manufacturing portfolio by dedicating at least $15 million to new bio-manufacturing initiatives.

    More: Coons release

    Passed by Congress -- National Manufacturing Strategy
    Congress passed bipartisan legislation authored by Sens. Coons (D-DE) and Kirk (R-IL) to create a national manufacturing strategy.  The bill was originally introduced in 2013 and would strengthen American manufacturing while not costing the federal government any money. “It’s time we catch up to our competitors around the globe and build a coherent, focused manufacturing strategy that can strengthen the middle class and make America the destination for 21st century manufacturing,” said Senator Coons.
    More: Coons release 

    Introduced -- Trade Adjustment Assistance Act of 2014
    U.S. Sen. Sherrod Brown (D-OH) introduced legislation to extend a critical lifeline for workers who lose their jobs due to foreign trade.  Brown’s bill would reauthorize the Trade Adjustment Assistance (TAA) program and expand its training and reemployment services to 2009 levels. According to the Department of Labor, approximately two million workers nationwide have relied on TAA since 1975 to make ends meet and receive training necessary to find a new job.
    More: Brown release

    Executive Action -- President Obama announces manufacturing action
    President Obama announced nearly $400 million to help improve the competitiveness of American businesses and workers by spurring new manufacturing innovations and giving American workers additional opportunities to improve and expand their skill sets for middle-class jobs. The President announced:

    • More than $290 million in public-private investment for two new Manufacturing Innovation Hub Competitions. These hubs will help support new advancements in manufacturing, and fulfill the President’s 2014 State of the Union pledge to launch four new institutes this year, for a total of eight institutes launched so far, and puts the Administration past the halfway mark on the President’s original goal of creating 15 manufacturing innovation institutes supported through executive action.  The hubs will include:
      • A Department of Defense-led Flexible Hybrid Electronics Manufacturing Innovation Institute.  The institute will focus on hybrid electronics that combine flexible materials with thin silicon chips to produce the next generation of electronic products seamlessly integrated into the things around us.  The hub will combine $75 million of federal investment with $75 million or more of private investment.
      • A Department of Energy-led Smart Manufacturing Innovation Institute.  This institute will focus on smart manufacturing, including advanced sensors, control, platforms, and models for manufacturing.  The new institute will receive a federal investment of $70 million that will be matched by at least $70 million in private investments.
    • $100 million to expand apprenticeships for American workers.  Apprenticeships are a proven training strategy for workers to learn the skills that employers need for American businesses to grow and thrive in a competitive global environment.  The Department of Labor will launch a $100 million competition that will award 25 grants to business, non-profit, and local government partners.  The grants will help launch apprenticeships in new, high-growth fields, align apprenticeships with pathways to further learning and career advancement, and develop apprenticeship models that scale.

    More: White House fact sheet



    Floor Speech -- Sens. Ayotte and Coons speak on Manufacturing Skills Act
    Senators Coons (D-DE) and Ayotte (R-NH) took to the Senate floor to highlight bipartisan legislation they introduced to help cities and states build 21st century manufacturing training programs.  The Manufacturing Skills Act will create a $100 million competitive grant program to support initiatives that strengthen the manufacturing workforce and address regional skills challenges. Sen. Coons stated, “Manufacturing is one of the great areas of opportunity for meaningful bipartisan cooperation that will move our country, our economy and our working families forward.  … The bill has one simple goal which we share -- to spur reforms in manufacturing skills training across our country.  … I'm convinced the United States is poised to really compete in the manufacturing economy of this century, but we still face key challenges in the job market for manufacturing.”
    More: Ayotte release | C-Span video

    News -- Sen. Brown tours Byer Steel, unveils new legislation
    Sen. Brown visited Byer Steel Group in Cincinnati to tour the facility and unveil new legislation that would help level the playing field for American manufacturers by strengthening the ability of the U.S. to crack down on unfair foreign competition resulting from violations of trade law. The Leveling the Playing Field Act would ensure American companies have the resources necessary to fight back against unfair foreign trade practices. “As American manufacturing continues its steady comeback, it is critical that we fully enforce our trade laws to ensure that American companies – like Byer Steel – can compete on a level playing field,” Brown said. “That’s why the Leveling the Playing Field Act is so important. We must fight back against foreign companies’ efforts to weaken our trade laws and exploit loopholes.”
    More: Brown release

    News -- Sen. Baldwin testifies before International Trade Commission on behalf of Wisconsin manufacturer
    Sen. Baldwin (D-WI) testified at a hearing of the International Trade Commission (ITC) on behalf of a Wisconsin paper company, Appvion of Appleton.  Appvion is a pulp and paper mill that manufactures and sells coated paper products world-wide and employs 1,644 employees in Wisconsin, Ohio and Pennsylvania. Sen. Baldwin addressed a 2008 antidumping investigation into imports of lightweight thermal paper from China and Germany.  As a result of the investigation, antidumping duties were imposed on imports from Germany and China and countervailing duties were imposed on imports from China.  The antidumping duties are due to expire, and the ITC heard testimony about how the domestic marketplace is impacted by dumping.
    More: Baldwin release

    News -- Sen. Shaheen gives speech on importance of STEM
    Sen. Shaheen (D-NH) met with leaders of the University of New Hampshire’s Manchester STEM Discovery Lab where she delivered remarks on the importance of Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) education. “Initiatives like UNH’s STEM Ambassadors program put us on the right track for economic success,” Shaheen said. “Jobs in STEM fields are predicted to be the fastest growing occupations in next decade, and with continued investments and commitments to STEM education, we can make sure we have a homegrown talent supply that can drive our economy in the future.”
    More: Shaheen release

    News -- Sen. Murphy launches “Murphy’s Monday Manufacturer”
    Sen. Murphy (D-CT) launched a new weekly series called “Murphy’s Monday Manufacturer”, in which one of Connecticut’s manufacturers is recognized each week. Sen. Murphy has recognized:

    • Severance Foods, the largest manufacturer and co-packer of tortilla chips in the Northeast, with 90 employees.
    • Xamax Industries, a global supplier of engineered products such as fibers, papers, and films, with 36 employees.
    • Polamer Precision, a contract aerospace manufacturer that produces engine and airframe components, with 83 employees.
    • Moore Engineering, a family-run manufacturing business that performs high precision Jig Grinding using family-developed machines, utilizes Electric Discharge Machines to create products for particular geometries, specializes in custom fixtures for aerospace applications, and even designs prototypes, with 4 employees.
    • Specialty Metal Fabrications, a veteran-owned manufacturer of precision metal products with 30 employees.
    • Carla’s Pasta, which produces pastas and pestos, with 171 employees.
    • Alinabal Holdings, a diversified manufacturer that manufactures products for the defense, aerospace, industrial, recreational, and medical industries, with 325 employees.

    More: Murphy release

    News -- International Trade Commission imposes rebar duties
    The International Trade Commission (ITC) determined that steel producers from Mexico and Turkey have caused economic harm to U.S. steel reinforcing bar (“rebar”) manufacturers.  Mexico’s producers were found to be dumping rebar into the U.S. market, while Turkey’s producers were found to be unfairly subsidizing their rebar exports.  Following the ITC decision, the Department of Commerce (DOC) will instruct U.S. Customs and Border Protection to collect estimated duties for imports of rebar from Mexico and Turkey.
    More: ITC release | Senate letter

  • Manufacturing Update for September 2014

    Manufacturing Jobs for America monthly manufacturing update


    Introduced -- Creating Quality Technical Educators Act
    Senators Baldwin (D-WI), Kaine (D-VA), and Portman (R-OH) introduced the Creating Quality Technical Educators Act.  The Act creates a Career and Technical Education (CTE) teacher-training grant partnership to recruit and train high-quality CTE teachers.  The Creating Quality Technical Educators Act grant would foster partnerships between high-needs secondary schools and post-secondary institutions to create one-year teacher residencies for CTE teachers.  Through grants in the Higher Education and Opportunity Act of 2008 (HEOA), many teacher residency partnerships already exist between post-secondary institutions and local schools to train prospective educators, but none are CTE focused.

    CTE teacher residencies created through the Creating Quality Technical Educators Act would target mid-career professionals in related technical fields, as well as recent college graduates, veterans or currently licensed teachers with a desire to transition to a CTE focus.
    More: Baldwin release

    Introduced -- Manufacturing Skills Act
    Senators Coons (D-DE) and Ayotte (R-NH) introduced the Manufacturing Skills Act, bipartisan legislation to help cities and states build 21st century manufacturing training programs.  The bill creates an annual $100 million competitive grant to support initiatives that strengthen the manufacturing workforce and address regional skills challenges.  Applicants will establish a local task force, consisting of leaders from the public, nonprofit, and manufacturing sector, as well as labor and education representatives, to apply for and carry out the three-year grant. A federal inter-agency partnership will review applications and award grants to the five states and five metropolitan areas with the strongest proposals.
    More: Coons release

    Announced -- President Obama announces new manufacturing hubs competition
    The President announced a new competition to award more than $200 million in public and private investment to create an Integrated Photonics Manufacturing Institute.  This is the second of four new institute competitions that will be launched this year. The competition will be led by the Department of Defense, which will award more than $100 million in federal investment to match $100 million or more in private investment.  The money will be used to build a new Institute for Manufacturing Innovation (IMI) focused on Integrated Photonics.  Photonics covers all of the uses of light; applications include powering the internet, medical technology, and national defense. The Institute will focus on developing an end-to-end photonics ‘ecosystem’ in the U.S., including domestic foundry access, integrated design tools, automated packaging, assembly and testing, and workforce development.
    More: White House fact sheet


    News -- Manufacturing Day
    The President and Secretary of Commerce Pritzker visited Millennium Steel Service in Princeton, IN to celebrate Manufacturing Day.  Millennium supplies automotive grade steel sheet to Toyota and related parts makers.  Other cabinet members traveled across the country to discuss the importance of continuing to invest in American manufacturing, as more than 1,600 U.S. manufacturers opened their factories to the public.

    As part of Manufacturing Day, the White House and Department of Commerce released a “Digital Tour of American Manufacturing,” a new digital report that highlights the central role of manufacturing in laying the foundation for a new American economy.

    The Department of Commerce also released the Assess Costs Everywhere portal to help manufacturers evaluate the advantages of locating in the United States.  Developed with experts at Lausanne University, the tool helps manufacturers directly quantify the often hidden costs of lengthy, overseas supply chains.  The new inventory costs tool will be used across Commerce’s manufacturing extension centers, which already support more than 30,000 small and medium manufacturers each year.
    More: Manufacturing day | Digital Tour of American Manufacturing | Assess Costs Everywhere

    News -- Senators host briefing on Career and Technical Education
    Senators Baldwin (D-WI), Kaine (D-VA) and Portman (R-OH), co-chairs of the Senate Career and Technical Education (CTE) Caucus, hosted a briefing and panel discussion on the current opportunities and challenges in aligning skills training with the needs of the 21st century workforce. The panel featured leaders from the education, business and government sectors in Wisconsin, Virginia, Ohio and the U.S. Department of Labor who shared their perspectives on the best practices and policies for supplying employers with a skilled workforce and providing students with the training necessary to find employment.
    More: Baldwin release

    News -- Congressional briefing on NNMI
    Senators Brown (D-OH) and Blunt (R-MO) and Congressman Reed (D-NY-23) and Kennedy (D-MA-4) hosted a briefing on the National Network for Manufacturing Innovation (NNMI).  The briefing featured Commerce Secretary Pritzker and leaders from industry discussing the activities of the pilot Manufacturing Innovation Institutes and the role of the Revitalize American Manufacturing Innovation (RAMI) Act.
    More: Manufacturing.gov

    News -- McCaskill Op-Ed
    Senator McCaskill (D-MO) recently wrote an op-ed arguing that “it’s critical that Congress take bipartisan action to renew the Export-Import Bank.”  Senator McCaskill described the Ex-Im Bank as “[o]ne of the most import tools in [the] toolkit … which helps Missouri businesses boost jobs and gives them a competitive edge to succeed internationally.”

    As the Senator noted, “Export-Import Bank’s work is simple and incredibly valuable to American business. The Bank supports American jobs by helping to finance foreign sales of U.S. products through loan guarantees, direct loans, and credit insurance, all at no cost to taxpayers. The bank actually earns revenue for the Treasury, including more than $1 billion in 2013 alone. Since 2009, the Export-Import Bank has supported $188 billion in U.S. exports and 1.2 million American jobs. More than 3,400 small businesses rely on the bank to finance export deals

    In Missouri, the Export-Import Bank has supported $1 billion in exports from 96 Missouri companies since 2007. And nearly 85 percent of businesses supported by the Export-Import Bank are small and medium-sized businesses.”
    More: McCaskill Op-Ed 

    Report -- The Shifting Economics of Global Manufacturing
    A new report from the Boston Consulting Group (BCG) identifies the United States as a “rising global star” of manufacturing.  The report finds that “China’s estimated manufacturing-cost advantage over the U.S. has shrunk to less than 5 percent” and “[c]ost structures in … the U.S. improved more than in all of the other 25 largest exporting economies.”
    More: BCG report

    Manufacturing Jobs for America
    Manufacturing Update
  • Manufacturing Update for August 2014

    Manufacturing Jobs for America monthly manufacturing update



    International Trade Commission assesses duties on unfair imports of oil country tubular goods
    The International Trade Commission (ITC) voted to assess duties on unfairly traded imports of oil country tubular goods (OCTG) that materially injure the domestic steel industry. The ITC approval will result in additional duties being imposed on OCTG producers, preventing them from undermining the U.S. steel industry. In July, the Department of Commerce overturned an initial ruling and found that Korean producers of OCTG, like those in other countries, have been selling the product at less than fair value in the United States.  This vote by the ITC marks final approval of that finding.

    Several members of Manufacturing Jobs for America and other Senators had previously written to and testified before the Department of Commerce and ITC about the importance of preserving a level playing field for the U.S. steel industry. Following the final vote, several members of Manufacturing Jobs for America praised the ruling.

    • Sen. Donnelly (D-IN) said, “I am glad to see the International Trade Commission standing up for the American manufacturing industry and the Hoosier steel community in this final decision. Their ruling reinforces what I have been saying from the start—that American workers deserve a level playing field on which to compete.”
    • Sen. Franken (D-MN) said, "This finding is a victory for Minnesota's iron ore industry and the important jobs it produces.  American iron and steel producers and our workers can compete with anyone in the world on a level playing field.  But we can't accept when other countries dump their goods here at anti-competitive prices, undercutting Minnesota's producers."
    • Sen. Klobuchar (D-MN) said, “This is a significant victory for hardworking miners in Minnesota and across the country, and I’m pleased that the ITC heeded our calls for action.  … These new penalties will help crack down on illegal trade practices and protect steelworker jobs.”

    More: ITC finding | Donnelly release | Franken release | Klobuchar release 

    OMB delays proposed “factoryless goods producer” revisions to NAICS
    OMB announced that it will delay a proposed revision to the North American Industry Classification System (NAICS) that would introduce the concept of a “factoryless goods producer.”  This would have counted manufacturing as domestic in the U.S. Census even if the manufacturing were conducted entirely overseas.  In July, Senators Brown (D-OH), Baldwin (D-WI), Cardin (D-MD), Coons (D-DE), Merkley (D-OR), Stabenow (D-MI), and Tester (D-MT), most of whom are members of Manufacturing Jobs for America, wrote to OMB Acting Director Deese to express their concerns about this proposed change.
    More: Brown release | EPI blog post



    Senators call on GAO to analyze federal manufacturing programs
    In a letter to Government Accountability Office (GAO) Comptroller General Gene Dodaro, bipartisan group of Senators asked the Office to analyze federal manufacturing policies and provide recommendations for improvement.  The senators requested answers to a range of questions about the scope, effectiveness, and potential for redundancy of federal manufacturing programs and tax incentives.  The information will help to inform congressional and executive branch efforts to support the United States’ steadily recovering manufacturing sector. “Manufacturing plays a critical role in our country’s economy,” the senators wrote. “Accounting for nearly $2 trillion of our nation’s output, more than 12 million Americans are directly employed in manufacturing.”

    “Given the importance of manufacturing in the United States, it is critical that federal manufacturing policy be effective,” the senators continued. “However, because the sector is diverse, no one federal department or agency deals exclusively with manufacturing.”

    The letter was signed by Senators Coons (D-DE), Blunt (R-MO), Coburn (R-OK), Schatz (D-HI), Kirk (R-IL), Warner (R-VA), and Graham (R-SC).
    More: Letter | Coons release

    MJA Members demonstrate support for Ex-Im reauthorization
    A number of MJA members recently spoke in support of reauthorizing the Export-Import bank, highlighting manufacturers in their district’s supported by the bank.  The Export-Import Bank is set to expire September 30, after which it will not be able to issue new loans.

    • Senator Baldwin (D-WI) visited Marine Travelift and Dan’s Fish, two Wisconsin businesses that have been helped by Export-Import Bank investments.   “If American businesses have a level playing field, they can compete against anyone. The Export-Import Bank is an important tool that helps us create that level playing field, bringing fairness to global trade and supporting American businesses so they can create jobs and grow,” said Baldwin.
    • Senator Landrieu (D-LA) called on Congress to reauthorize the Export-Import Bank in order to continue recent positive momentum on the U.S. trade deficit, which fell to a five-month low in July.  “The American energy revolution and strong pro-export policies continue to narrow our trade deficit. Now is the time to provide certainty to American businesses looking to ship their goods and services abroad by reauthorizing the Export-Import Bank,” Sen. Landrieu said.
    • Senator McCaskill (D-MO) met with executives and employees at Western Forms, a manufacturer of aluminum forming systems, to rally support for the job-creating benefits of the Export-Import Bank.  McCaskill heard from Western Forms employees on how their company had been positively impacted by the bank, and discussed ways the bank’s funding has allowed them to create jobs in Missouri and compete in the global marketplace.  “The Export-Import Bank is one of the most important tools available to help Missouri companies create jobs and succeed in the increasingly competitive global market,” said McCaskill.
    • Senator Shaheen (D-NH) visited Corfin Industries, WS Badger, and Mercury Systems to highlight how high-tech manufacturing and export opportunities can help businesses grow and create jobs.  “Export promotion has been a top priority of mine ever since my days as New Hampshire governor, and it will continue to be a priority of mine as we look for ways to boost our small businesses so they can create more jobs,” said Shaheen.

    More: Baldwin release | Landrieu release | McCaskill release | Shaheen release

    Sen. Brown visits local steel manufacturer
    Sen. Brown (D-OH) visited Warren Steel Holdings, where he outlined efforts to boost domestically-manufactured steel and keep Ohioans at work.  Earlier in the month, Sen. Brown had worked with U.S. Rep. Tim Ryan (D-OH-13) and the Public Utilities Commission of Ohio to reach a deal to put workers of Warren Steel Holdings back to work. “Manufacturing is a cornerstone of our economy and it’s making a comeback,” Brown said. “That’s why it’s so important to keep the momentum going, by enforcing trade policies that ensure our workers can compete on a level playing field.  We should also pass my bill that would ensure that American infrastructure projects use American-made steel.”
    More: Brown release

    Senators Warner and Mikulski visit Newport News Shipbuilding
    Huntington Ingalls Industries hosted Senators Warner (D-VA) and Mikulski (D-MD) for a tour of the company's Newport News Shipbuilding division. The visit provided the Senators an opportunity to meet shipbuilders and get a behind-the-scenes look at the defense industrial base and American manufacturing. Newport News Shipbuilding President Matt Mulherin accompanied the Senators on the shipyard tour, which included a visit to one of the shipyard's submarine construction facilities where PCU John Warner (SSN 785) is under construction. Huntington Ingalls Industries designs, builds and manages the life-cycle of the most complex nuclear and conventionally-powered ships for the U.S. Navy and Coast Guard.  Headquartered in Newport News, Virginia, HII employs more than 39,000 people operating both domestically and internationally.
    More: Warner press release

    Shaheen visits local training centers and manufacturer
    Sen. Shaheen visited River Valley Community College to highlight how job training programs like the Trade Adjustment Assistance Community College and Career Training Grant Program can bolster economic opportunity for local manufacturers and help prepare students for high-skill careers. Shaheen also visited Pro-Cut International to highlight how expanding trade and exporting opportunities can help small manufacturers expand and create jobs.  Pro-Cut has taken advantage of the State Trade Export Promotion (STEP) to tap into new overseas markets and grow.
    More: Shaheen release

    Manufacturing Jobs for America
    Manufacturing Update
  • Manufacturing Update for July 2014

    Manufacturing Jobs for America monthly manufacturing update


    Passed by the House -- Department of Energy Laboratory Modernization and Technology Transfer Act
    The House passed H.R. 5120, the Department of Energy Laboratory Modernization and Technology Transfer Act of 2014, on suspension on July 22. The bill is a companion to the America INNOVATES Act (S. 1973), sponsored by Sens. Chris Coons (D-DE) and Marco Rubio (R-FL). Both bills increase the flexibility of the national lab system, allow more flexibility to work with the private sector, and “vertically integrate” the Department of Energy’s energy and science research. H.R. 5120 was introduced by Reps. Hultgran (R-IL-14) and Kilmer (D-WA-6), and is cosponsored by Reps. Fattah (D-PA-2), Johnson (D-TX-30), Lipinski (D-IL-3), Lujan (D-NM-3), Lummis (R-WY), Nunnelee (R-MS-1), Smith (R-TX-21), Swalwell (D-CA-15), and Veasey (D-TX-33). 
    More: Kilmer press release 

    Presidential actions -- Improving workforce training
    A new White House report, compiled by Vice President Biden, details strategies for improving federal workforce training.  The report outlines new actions the Administration will take to strengthen program coordination and accountability, expand investment in apprenticeships and effective on-the-job training, and enable federal agencies to pilot promising new training models. The report includes examples of successful job training programs around the country and a number of steps the administration is taking to build on the progress Congress achieved by passing the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA).  These steps include competitive grants, a job-driven checklist, improved information, and expanding on programs that have been proven to work.
    More: Ready to Work report 

    Approved out of Committee -- Revitalize American Manufacturing and Innovation Act
    The House Committee on Science, Space, and Technology approved H.R. 2996, the Revitalize American Manufacturing and Innovation Act (RAMI), out of Committee by voice vote. RAMI is the House companion to Sen. Brown (D-OH) and Blunt’s (R-MO) National Network of Manufacturing Innovation (NNMI), also known as the Hubs Bill.  Both bills bring together industry, academia, and government to accelerate manufacturing innovation and bridge the gap between basic research and product development.
    More: Markup 

    Introduced and voted on -- Bring Jobs Home Act
    Sens. Pryor (D-AR), Stabenow (D-MI), and Walsh (D-MT) introduced the Bring Jobs Home Act, which closes a tax loophole that pays for companies for moving jobs overseas.  It also provides a 20% tax credit to help companies with the cost of bringing jobs back to America.  The bill was cosponsored by Sens. Baldwin (D-WI), Blumenthal (D-CT), Coons (D-DE), Durbin (D-IL), Franken (D-MN), Hagan (D-NC), Klobuchar (D-MN), Markey (D-MA), McCaskill (D-MO), Merkley (D-OR), Reed (D-RI), Rockefeller (D-WV), Schatz (D-HI), Schumer (D-NY), Shaheen (D-NH), Udall (D-CO), Udall (D-NM), Warner (D-VA), and Whitehouse (D-RI). Sen. Stabenow said: "It's outrageous that, right now, American workers are paying through the tax code to ship their own jobs overseas. We need to close this indefensible loophole and instead start rewarding the companies that are doing the right thing and bringing jobs back to America.” The bill was brought to the floor at the end of July, but the Senate failed to agree to cloture to end debate.
    More: Stabenow release | Walsh release

    Introduced -- COMPETES Act
    Sens. Rockefeller (D-WV) and Coons (D-DE) introduced the America COMPETES Reauthorization Act of 2014.  The bill is cosponsored by Sens. Durbin (D-IL), Nelson (D-FL), Pryor (D-AR), and Markey (D-MA). The COMPETES Act extends and enhances federal investments in cutting-edge research and education.  The bill builds on the America COMPETES Act of 2007 and its 2010 reauthorization. The legislation authorizes stable and sustained increases in R&D funding for the National Science Foundation (NSF) and the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST).   The bill also promotes the economic benefits of promising R&D and addresses agency efforts to increase participation in STEM fields, particularly among women and minorities.
    More: Coons release

    Introduced -- Manufacturing Universities
    Sens. Graham (R-SC) and Coons (D-DE) introduced bipartisan legislation to help schools strengthen their engineering programs to meet the growing demands of 21st century manufacturing. The bill would designate 25 universities as ‘Manufacturing Universities.’ Designated schools would receive $5 million per year for four years to meet specific goals, including focusing engineering programs on manufacturing, building new partnerships with manufacturing firms, growing training opportunities, and fostering manufacturing entrepreneurship. “It’s critical that our schools and universities equip students for success in manufacturing and contribute to the research and development that drives advanced manufacturing,” said Senator Coons.
    More: Coons release

    Manufacturing Jobs for America
    Manufacturing Update
  • Manufacturing Update for June 2014

    Manufacturing Jobs for America monthly manufacturing update


    Passed by the Senate -- Five Manufacturing Jobs for America bills in Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act

    The Senate passed the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA) on June 25.  The bill includes five innovative skills-training provisions from the Manufacturing Jobs for America campaign to help prepare America’s workforce for the manufacturing jobs of the 21st century.  The bill now heads to the House of Representatives for approval. The bills included were:

    Adult Education and Economic Growth Act (S. 1400), sponsored by Sens. Reed (D-RI) and Brown (D-OH)
    WIOA includes key portions of S.1400, which seeks to increase investment in adult education, expand access to technology and digital literacy skills for adult learners, require better coordination and integration of adult education with state workforce development systems and postsecondary education, and strengthen English and civics education for new Americans. More: Reed press release

    America Works Act (S. 453), sponsored by Sens. Hagan (D-NC), Donnelly (D-IN), Heller (R-NV), Klobuchar (D-MN), and Schumer (D-NY)
    WIOA includes provisions from S. 453, which seeks to prioritize federal funding for job training programs that offer portable, national, and industry-recognized credentials. This reform would promote job-training programs that match the skills of workers with the needs of local employers, thereby training individuals for the jobs that are available in their communities right now.
    More: Hagan press release | Donnelly press release

    On-the-Job Training Act (S. 1227), sponsored by Sens. Shaheen (D-NH) and Cochran (R-MS)
    WIOA includes aspects of S. 1227 to significantly expand opportunities for on-the-job-training. WIOA requires state workforce investment boards to disseminate information identifying on-the-job-training opportunities and boosts incentives for employers to participate in on-the-job-training programs.
    More: Shaheen press release

    SECTORS Act (S. 1226), sponsored by Sens. Brown (D-OH), Casey (D-PA), Collins (R-ME), and Durbin (D-IL)
    WIOA includes provisions from S.1226 to require state and local Workforce Investment Boards to establish sector-based partnerships between employers, educators, and local workforce administrators to train workers for the most in-demand 21st century jobs.
    More: Brown press release

    Community College to Career Fund (S. 1269), sponsored by Sens. Franken (D-MN), Begich (D-AK), Durbin (D-IL), and Schatz (D-HI)
    WIOA includes aspects of S.1269 to create partnerships between businesses and schools that facilitate effective job training.
    More: Franken press release 

    Executive Action -- Presidential actions to revitalize manufacturing
    The administration announced new federal actions and new commitments from Mayors and other local leaders to invest in manufacturing. New actions announced include:

    ‘Mayors Maker Challenge’
    More than 90 Mayors and local leaders committed to the ‘Mayors Maker Challenge’ to expand access to physical locations and new manufacturing and prototyping equipment in their communities, spur manufacturing entrepreneurship, and inspire young people to pursue careers in manufacturing and engineering.

    Streamlining access to $5 billion of advanced equipment in over 700 R&D facilities
    The Administration will help manufacturing entrepreneurs access $5 billion worth of advanced equipment in federal R&D facilities that they may use to develop new technologies and launch new inventions.  For example, entrepreneurs might access NASA’s National Center for Advanced Manufacturing to produce the high-strength, defect-free joints required for cutting-edge aeronautics.

    Expanding investment in the Materials Genome Initiative
    Five federal agencies will invest more than $150 million in ground-breaking research to support the Materials Genome Initiative, upping the Administration’s investment in the manufacturing of advanced materials.  The Materials Genome Initiative is a public-private endeavor that aims to cut in half the time it takes to develop novel materials that can fuel advanced manufacturing and bolster the 21st century American economy.
    More: White House press release

    Passed by Committee -- Manufacturing priorities in CJS Appropriations
    The Senate Appropriations Committee included a number of manufacturing priorities in the Commerce, Justice, Science, and Related Agencies appropriations bill, which supports key programs for manufacturers and entrepreneurs. Included in the bill were:

    Manufacturing Extension Partnerships
    Manufacturing Extension Partnerships (MEPs) are the only public-private partnership dedicated to providing technical support and services to small and medium-sized manufacturers.  The Appropriations Committee recognized the importance of MEPs by raising funding to $141 million, a $13 million increase.  According to data from the National Institute of Standards and Technology, every dollar invested in MEP facilitates $19 in new sales growth and $21 in new client investment.

    National Manufacturing Strategy
    The bill directs the Office of Science & Technology Policy to report to Congress with a comprehensive plan to develop a national manufacturing strategy.  This language compliments the American Manufacturing Competitiveness Act, which is part of Manufacturing Jobs for America and was introduced by Sens. Coons (D-DE) and Kirk (R-IL). 

    The bill includes language recognizing the importance of U.S. bio-manufacturing and directing the National Science Foundation (NSF) to increase support for it in its advanced manufacturing portfolio by dedicating at least $15 million to new bio-manufacturing initiatives. 

    Foreign Commercial Service
    The Department of Commerce announced the expansion of the Foreign Commercial Service, including four new offices in Angola, Tanzania, Ethiopia, and Mozambique and four office expansions in Kenya, Ghana, Morocco, and Libya.  The expansion will create nearly 70 new positions and post 17 additional officers globally to help U.S. manufacturers get started in exporting or increase sales to new global markets. 

    This month's full newsletter:

  • Manufacturing Update for May 2014

    Manufacturing Jobs for America monthly manufacturing update


    Passed by Congress -- “Buy America” provisions in WRRDA
    Congress recently passed the Water Resources Reform and Development Act (WRRDA).  The bill includes provisions introduced by Sens. Brown (D-OH) and Merkley (D-OR) that ensure American-made iron and steel are used in federally-funded water infrastructure projects when available and competitively priced. “For our economy to continue adding jobs, we must ensure American taxpayer dollars are used to support manufacturers and workers at home, not overseas,” Brown said. “I thank my colleagues for passing legislation that will strengthen our economy and infrastructure while benefitting Ohio manufacturers." "If we don’t make things in America, we won’t have a middle class in America,” Merkley said. “Today’s news is a huge victory for the principle that American tax dollars should support American jobs.”
    More: Brown press release

    Secretary Pritzker announces first 12 Manufacturing Communities
    Commerce Secretary Pritzker announced the first 12 communities that will be designated Manufacturing Communities as part of the Investing in Manufacturing Communities Partnership (IMCP) Initiative.  The program is designed to accelerate the resurgence of manufacturing in communities by supporting the development of long-term economic development strategies. The 12 communities were selected from 70 that applied based on the strength of their economic development plans, the potential for impact in their communities, and the depths of their partnerships across the public and private sector. The Manufacturing Communities will receive coordinated support for their strategies from eleven federal agencies with $1.3 billion available in federal economic development assistance.  The communities will also receive a dedicated federal liaison at each agency to help them navigate available federal resources. “The 12 Manufacturing Communities announced today represent a diverse group of communities with the most comprehensive economic development plans to attract business investment that will increase their competitiveness,” said U.S. Secretary of Commerce Penny Pritzker.
    More: Commerce press release | White House fact sheet

    Introduced -- Defend Trade Secrets Act
    Senators Hatch (R-UT) and Coons (D-DE) introduced the Defend Trade Secrets Act to help combat the loss of an estimated $160 billion to $480 billion each year in the United States to the theft of corporate trade secrets. The bill empowers manufacturers and other companies to protect their trade secrets in federal court by creating a federal private right-of-action. “The intellectual property that drives the U.S. economy has never been more valuable, or more vulnerable,” Senator Coons said.  “American companies are losing jobs because of the theft of trade secrets every day.  This bipartisan bill will empower American companies to protect their jobs by legally confronting those who steal their trade secrets.  It will finally give trade secrets the same legal protections that other forms of critical intellectual property already enjoy.”
    More: Hatch press release | Coons press release

    Hearing -- Judiciary hearing on trade secrets
    Manufacturing leaders testified before the Senate Judiciary Subcommittee on Crime and Terrorism on the need for urgent action to combat trade secret theft and protect American manufacturing jobs.  The witnesses urged Congress to pass the Defend Trade Secrets Act, which empowers companies to defend their trade secrets in federal court and recover stolen intellectual property before it is sold to competitors. Pursuing trade theft cases in state courts results in “a whole lot more expense,” said Doug Norman, Vice President and General Patent Counsel for Eli Lilly, as well as “a whole lot more risk, because we may not be able to isolate and seize the stolen materials as quickly.”
    More: Coons press release


    News -- Landrieu urges BASF to build plant in Louisiana
    Sen. Landrieu (D-LA) wrote to BASF urging the company to locate its new propylene facility in Louisiana, where it would create thousands of high-paying jobs and fuel the revival of manufacturing. “Louisiana is at the center of a global manufacturing renaissance and a natural gas boom, made possible by extraordinary and swift advances in technology to locate, capture and produce natural gas,” Sen. Landrieu said. 
    More: Landrieu press release

    News -- Baldwin testifies before International Trade Commission on behalf of Wisconsin manufacturers
    Sen. Baldwin (D-WI) testified before the International Trade Commission (ITC) on behalf of a Wisconsin manufacturer, Felker Brothers of Marshfield.  Sen. Baldwin appeared to highlight the importance of the stainless pipe industry.  The manufacturer is a petitioner in an antidumping investigation on imports of welded stainless pressure pipe from Malaysia, Thailand and Vietnam.  At the ITC hearing, Baldwin focused on the challenges that Felker and the industry have faced from unfairly traded imports.
    More: Baldwin press release

    News -- Brown calls on administration to protect steel manufacturers
    Sen. Brown joined Northeast Ohio workers at a rally to call on the Obama Administration to protect Ohio steel manufacturers and the jobs they support. Outside of the U. S. Steel facility in Lorain, Brown and local steelworkers urged the Commerce Department (DOC) to crack down on countries that unfairly dump their steel in the U.S. market, threatening American jobs and competitiveness. A recent report from the Economic Policy Institute (EPI), supported by Sen. Brown, finds that a surge in imports is putting half a million U.S. manufacturing jobs at risk.
    More: Brown press release | EPI report

    News -- Schumer, Gillibrand announce manufacturing grants to University of Rochester and SEMATECH Albany
    Sens. Gillibrand (D-NY) and Schumer (D-NY) announced grants for the University of Rochester’s New York Photonics Manufacturing Initiative and SEMATECH Albany from the Department of Commerce’s National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST). The grants will strengthen the nation’s optics, photonics and imaging manufacturers, and support SEMATECH’s Semiconductor Supply Chain Roadmapping initiative, respectively.
    More: Gillibrand University of Rochester release | Gillibrand SEMATECH release

    News -- Harkin announces economic development funding for Iowa
    Sen. Harkin (D-IA) announced that three Iowa regions were awarded grants through the Department of Commerce’s Economic Development Administration to help establish comprehensive economic development strategies in their region. 
    More: Harkin press release

    News -- Shaheen opens Southern New Hampshire Regional Economic Development Center
    Sen. Shaheen (D-NH) joined members of the New Hampshire congressional delegation in opening the Southern New Hampshire Regional Economic Development Center, which will help support small manufacturers with counseling, pre-loan packaging, assistance in finding a location, alternative financing, and employee training.  Sen. Shaheen supported REDC’s grant application to the Economic Development Administration, and in April of 2012 announced REDC’s selection for a $432,000 grant which made the new center possible.
    More: Shaheen press release

    News -- Cardin tours Maryland manufacturers
    Sen. Cardin (D-MD) launched a Made in Maryland Job Tour, touring a number of Maryland manufacturers.  Among the manufacturers he toured was HunterDouglas, where 860 employees manufacture high end, custom window fashions. 
    More: Cardin press release

    News -- Coons tours local manufacturer
    Sen. Coons (D-DE) visited WhiteOptics, a manufacturer of raw materials for LED lighting.  While there, the Senator took the opportunity to address questions on how protecting trade secrets can help encourage innovation.
    More: Coons blog post

    News -- President Obama meets with manufacturing leaders
    The President met with manufacturing leaders to announce a forum to attract more American and foreign companies to create jobs in the U.S. “We have made enormous strides over the last several years not just recovering from a Great Recession, but taking advantage of and now marketing the advantages of doing business in the United States — whether it’s low energy costs, an incredibly productive workforce,” the President said. 
    More: Detroit News

    News -- NIST announces award to MTConnect to promote advanced manufacturing
    NIST recently announced an award for MTConnect, “an open, royalty-free standard intended to foster greater interoperability between manufacturing devices and software applications.” "This is the promised land," says Doug Woods, president of the Association for Manufacturing Technology (AMT) and a champion of MTConnect. 
    More: IndustryWeek | NIST announcement

    News -- Production of new Ford Transit Van launched at new Kansas City plant
    Ford recently launched production of the new Ford Transit Van at its Kansas City Assembly Plant.  With 2,000 new jobs at the plant supported by a $1.1 billion investment, Ford is now more than 75 percent toward its goal of creating 12,000 jobs in the United States by 2015.  In addition to the Transit Van, the Kansas City Assembly Plant produces the Ford F-150, and employs 4,878 workers on three crews.
    More: Ford

    Report -- “The all-of-the-above energy strategy as a path to sustainable economic growth”
    The White House recently issued a report detailing how an all-of-the-above energy strategy can help fuel economic growth.  Energy prices are of particular importance to manufacturers, and have helped  fuel the U.S. manufacturing renaissance in recent years.
    More: White House

    News -- Commerce Department honors manufacturers for export success
    Commerce Secretary Pritzker honored 65 U.S. exporters at the 2014 President’s “E” Awards.  The 52nd anniversary of the awards, the “E” Awards are the highest recognition any U.S. entity can receive for significant contributions to increasing American exports.
    More: Commerce Department

Untitled Document