California competes for federal money for manufacturing

150 150 Ed Coghlan

(Photo Credit: bloodyrazor)

Talk to California manufacturing executives–and we talk to them frequently—and they’ll tell you that things are looking up for the moment. However, there are still challenges: the cost of doing business and a prepared and available workforce to name two.

The state of California seems to have helped its own cause last week, when Governor Brown signed two bills designed to help manufacturing, eliminating the sales tax on the purchase of manufacturing equipment among other incentives. Business leaders were hailing the move over the weekend believing it will make it easier for manufacturing to expand here.

“California has more manufacturing jobs than any other state. In addition to the good middle-class wages created by these jobs, they generate additional high-wage support jobs in design, marketing and logistics,” said Doug Henton, CEO of Collaborative Economics and a member of the Summit Management Team. “Advancing manufacturing in all the regions of California through well-crafted tax, regulatory, capital and training programs will benefit the entire state economy.”

Now the federal government is about to get in on the act through its Investing in Manufacturing Communities Partnership. The only California meeting about the program will be held in Woodland, near Sacramento on Thursday July 18 (at the Hedrick Ag Center), sponsored by the White House and the U.S Department of Agriculture.

The news is there is some real money available in this program. Twenty-five communities around the country will be awarded $200,000 each later this year to create an implementation strategy. That money will be available this fall.

In addition, 5-6 communities will be awarded up to $25 million each next year from the U.S. Commerce Department for manufacturing strategies that are ready to go.

The IMCP program was born as the Obama Administration placed an emphasis on accelerating the resurgence of manufacturing and also to help communities cultivate an environment for business to create well paying jobs.

Thursday’s roundtable is for listening to local stakeholders and getting feedback on how the Administration can best support local manufacturing.

The event is free of charge, though pre-event registration is required and space is limited. This event is open to the press. Please RSVP to Chuck Clendenin at with your name, title, organization, website, email address, phone number and topics you are interested in learning more about.

Advancing manufacturing in California is one of the Signature Initiatives that the California Economic Summit process has identified this year, following 16 meetings across California. The Summit is focused on how to improve both short-term job creation and the state’s ability to compete long term in the global economy. The Summit will be held November 7-8 in Los Angeles.

Glenda Humiston, the California Director of the USDA, will host Thursday’s meeting in Woodland. She is also very involved in the Summit, leading the work that is being done on another signature initiative–Working Landscapes–working with partners to create landscapes and ecosystems that benefit humanity and the planet, of particular interest in California where the diverse regions and landscapes, plus the strain of maintaining the world’s 8th largest economy, often spark discussions about how we use our land.


Ed Coghlan

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