Senator Shaheen Says ‘Manufacturing Is Critical To New Hampshire Economy, and Jobs

Senator Shaheen At Globe Manufacturing
Senator Shaheen At Globe Manufacturing

Senator Shaheen At Globe Manufacturing

At Globe Manufacturing Shaheen discusses New Hampshire’s manufacturing sector

(Pittsfield, NH) – U.S. Senator Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH) visited Globe Manufacturing this morning to tour its Pittsfield facility and discuss the importance of manufacturing to New Hampshire’s economy. Globe Manufacturing has been producing equipment for firefighters since 1901 and employs 300 people in New Hampshire.

“It’s great to visit Globe Manufacturing and see the state-of-the-art equipment they produce to keep our first responders and firefighters safe on the job,” Shaheen said. “New Hampshire’s manufacturing sector employs more than 10 percent of our workforce and keeping our manufacturing sector strong is so important for the economy and jobs here and around the country. Companies like Globe Manufacturing create and sustain good-paying jobs that drive economic growth and I will continue my work to promote the nation’s manufacturing industry so we can continue to create jobs here at home.”

Shaheen has been vocal about the need to encourage growth in manufacturing throughout the country. Last year, she joined a campaign to refocus Washington on job creation and economic growth with a focus on manufacturing. Shaheen has introduced several bipartisan pieces of legislation including the On-the-Job Training Act and Small Business Export Growth Act, which would help create jobs and grow the economy. Shaheen was also a leader in the creation of the new Manchester Job Corps, which will train young people in New Hampshire for careers in the advanced manufacturing, construction, health care, homeland security, hospitality and information technology industries.

Can Made In America Smartphones Become A Trend?

Made in the usa

Made in the usaAAM says lets have that debate at SXSW, a premier tech event. But we need your help getting there.

Here’s the deal: Within the past year, Google/Motorola, Apple, and Lenovo have all announced that they will make some products in America.

That’s great news. But is this a trend or simply a series of PR stunts? Lets find out.

Each March, thousands of creative, technologically minded individuals converge on Austin, Texas for the South by Southwest Interactive Conference (SXSW). Over its course, participants attend workshops and panels on a wide array of topics – and we want Made in the U.S.A. to be one of those. We want to bring a new perspective to Austin, one that understand the intersection of progressive policy and technological innovation.

Here’s where you come in!

The AAM submitted an event for consideration as part of the 2014 SXSW conference. The session, “Making it in America: Start Up and Stay” would discuss the nascent trend of stateside technology manufacturing, and make the case for technology-focused entrepreneurs to manufacture their products here in the United States.

And we need you to vote for our session.

SXSW organizers select sessions carefully, and public voting influences their decision-making. We need other people who care about Made in America as much as we do to help us send the message: This panel is important!

Can you help?

Voting for our panel is easy. If you haven’t done so already, sign up to vote here.

Once you are signed up and have confirmed your registration through your email, visit our session page and click on the thumbs up icon on the left side of the page.

And that’s it. You’re done, your vote is counted, and we are one step closer to bringing Made in America to one of the largest technology conferences in the world.

Remember, the work AAM does wouldn’t be possible without your support. So we need your vote! Thanks for your help in getting AAM to Austin for SXSW!

New Book “ReMaking America” Is A Guide To Rebuilding American Manufacturing

Remaking America Book

Jobs! Jobs! Jobs!

During the last Presidential election, the biggest theme of the campaign was jobs.  Both President Obama and Governor Romney pushed the idea of supporting manufacturing jobs by promoting “Made In America”.  By the time election day finally arrived, more than one million ads had been created about “adding jobs to our struggling economy.”

What happened to that laser-like focus on “Jobs! Jobs! Jobs!”?  (Congress still hasn’t passed a jobs bill.)

For decades now, US “free-trade” policies and offshoring of jobs has reduced our manufacturing base.  According to Scott Paul, President of the Alliance for American Manufacturing, U.S. manufacturing has “fallen to 12% of our national economy.” Scott notes that this has turned the United States from a “creditor nation” to a “debtor nation”.

All you have to do is look at the city of Detroit.  Up until the 1980s, Detroit was a shining example of American manufacturing. Dave Johnson from the Campaign for America’s Future describes what has happened: Detroit, which ‘used to exemplify American prosperity, now is a wasteland of crumbling buildings, homes, and people.”

There are many reasons corporations ship their jobs overseas; most revolve around the public policies created in Washington.  Policies like NAFTA and the proposed Trans-Pacific Partnership are removing the advantages to manufacturing here at home.

Remaking America BookRebuilding our manufacturing base is the key to rebuilding our economy and putting millions of people back to work in good middle class jobs.  In an effort to bring awareness to the need for American manufacturing, the Alliance for American Manufacturing has published a new book called “ReMaking America”.  The book features an all-star cast of experts discussing America’s manufacturing potential and potential pitfalls.

“This new volume illustrates that American manufacturing is rising from the ashes,”  Paul said. “But it will take political insight and courage among our nation’s leaders to seize on this moment of great opportunity – before our global competitors out-innovate, out-invest, and out-build us. The cost of not acting will be great.” (AAM)

In a recent phone interview, Paul and Carl Pope (Former Director of the Sierra Club) explained some of the opportunities that we must seize if we have any chance of “Remaking America”.

Paul highlighted the promise made to America by President Obama to add one million new manufacturing jobs in the United States by 2017.   Paul said that so far we have added “24,000 new jobs.”  He said, “This is well below the number of monthly new jobs needed to meet this goal.”  (You can follow the one million jobs progress at AAMeter.) This does not mean we should abandon all hope, it means we need to change our policies and invest in new technologies like renewable energy.

Paul described the book as a “hopeful message for American manufacturing”. He contributed a chapter to the book, focusing on simple public policy changes that could revive our manufacturing base.  “There is a role for public policy in manufacturing and it is a key part of this discussion,” he said.

Pope, a well-known environmentalist, is another contributing author.  People have asked him, why is he involved with manufacturing as an environmentalist?  In the phone interview, he explained that “the energy sector is a prime example of how we could rebuild our manufacturing base.  By 2050, we are going to need to rebuild, renovate, and reconstruct pretty much everything we have built in the U.S. over the last 200 years.  This is something we cannot offshore to Shanghai.”

Pope goes into great detail in the book about how right now we have a significant economic advantage over the rest of the world in liquid natural gas prices.  He said, “The United States can buy LNG for around $4 per cubic foot, while Europe buys their LNG for around $10 from Russia.  China and Japan have to pay upwards of $18 per cubic foot for LNG.”  This is an enormous opportunity for America manufacturing.  Some states are already taking advantage of this by converting antiquated coal power plants to more efficient and economic LNG plants.  To reconstruct or convert these power plants is going to take large amounts of construction materials like manufactured steel.

Pope believes that the connection between manufacturing and renewable energy could revive our economy.  He believes in this so much that he teamed up with Leo Gerard, President of the United Steel Workers, to create the Blue-Green Alliance.  The Blue-Green Alliance is focused on rebuilding our infrastructure while creating new jobs and cleaning up our environment.

ReMaking America is a guide for simple common sense solutions to rebuilding our economy, making our environment cleaner, and putting millions of people back to work in good paying manufacturing jobs.  In their interview, Pope and Paul only scratched the surface of the issues covered in the book.  Other contributing authors include:

  • Richard McCormack, Editor of Manufacturing & Technology News.
  • Leo Hindery, Chair of the U.S. Economy / Smart Globalization Initiative at the New America Foundation and former CEO of AT&T Broadband.
  • Eric Garfinkel, Member of the Adjunct Faculty at the University of Colorado Law School and former Chief Council for China Trade in the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative.
  • Harry Moser, Founder of the Reshoring Initiative and Chairman Emeritus of Charmilles Technologies Corp.
  • Harold Meyerson, Executive Editor of the American Prospect and columnist for the Washington Post.
  • Irene Petrick, Director of the Enterprise Informatics and Integration Center at Pennsylvania State University.
  • Sridhar Kota, Professor of Mechanical Engineering at the University of Michigan and former Assistant Director for Advanced Manufacturing at the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy.
  • Stacey Jarrett Wagner, Manager of Workforce Systems Development at the National Institute of Standards and Technology’s Manufacturing Extension Partnership.

If you need a few more reasons why you must read this book, here are a couple of excerpts.

Richard McCormack: “We can’t have a strong robust economy without making things, creating wealth.” “Look at the talk about resourcing, there is not much evidence other than anecdotal stories. The economy is stagnant, the trade deficit is going up not down.”

Harold Meyerson: “A large growing number of American workers in well-paid manufacturing jobs are now hired on to low-paying jobs, partly due to lower-wage and anti-union states.” A study by Boston Consulting Group noted wage stagnation in the US and wage increases in China. “A leading example of higher pay and benefits is Germany. Their companies have preserved the highest level of manufacturing in home markets, have offshored less-skilled jobs. There is an increasing tendency for German companies to locate jobs here in the South for cheap labor. This is not realizing the promise of manufacturing.”

 

Click the links for more information on ReMaking America, Campaign for America’s Future, the Alliance for American Manufacturing, and the Blue-Green Alliance.

Kuster Expands “Make It In America” jobs plan with Workforce Development Bill

Kuster Speaks

Kuster SpeaksWASHINGTON, D.C. – Further demonstrating her commitment to workforce development in New Hampshire and around the country, Congresswoman Annie Kuster (NH-02) joined other House Democrats today at a press conference to announce that eight new bills, including her Workforce Development Investment Act, have been added to the “Make It In America” jobs plan.

Earlier this year, Kuster became a founding member of “Make It In America,” which focuses on creating the best conditions for American businesses to manufacture their products, innovate and create jobs in the United States. The “Make It In America” plan emphasizes four key priority areas: adopting and pursuing a national manufacturing strategy, promoting the export of American goods, encouraging businesses to bring jobs and innovation back to the United States, and training and securing a 21st century workforce.

Kuster’s Workforce Development Investment Act would meet these objectives by providing tax incentives to businesses that partner with community colleges and other educational institutions to strengthen workforce development for students. The bill, H.R. 1747, would provide tax credits to employers who collaborate with educational institutions to equip students with the skills they need to compete for well-paying jobs.

“That’s just common sense. When we invest in our workforce, more employers will invest in America,” Kuster said during the press conference. “More employers will invest in America. Our students will be more competitive in the job market, and our businesses will be more successful in the global economy.”

Kuster has made workforce development one of her top priorities in Congress. Over the last few months, she has toured and met with staff and students at Keene State College’s Regional Center for Advanced Manufacturing (RCAM), Nashua Community College (NCC), and New Hampshire Technical Institute (NHTI), as well as advanced manufacturers all across the Granite State.

The Dilemma Surrounding Chinese Steel

Chinese Steel AAM

Over the last few decades workers in the steel industry have taken a significant hit.  This has left a huge loophole for Chinese steel manufactures to undercut US steel mills and gain a stronghold on the market.

Chinese Steel AAM

From ShouldBeMadeInAmerica.COM

More recently there have been many examples of large construction projects that have relied on Chinese produced steel.  One of the most famous was the reconstruction of the Bay Bridge in San Francisco California.  The NH Labor News talked about the $500 billion dollar project that was slotted to be funded under President Obama’s reinvestment program. The problem was that the reinvestment program required American made products and a project labor agreement for worker protections.  These restrictions are some of the reasons that the California Legislature decided not to use federal funds to fund the project.

In fact the project was completed with Chinese steel and Chinese workers, a double slap in the face for American workers.  The chinese government continues to use currency manipulation to make trade more favorable for their exports.  Currency manipulation is one of the biggest problems in trading with China. “Due to currency manipulation the raw materials costs in the United States are the same as final price of Chinese steel” said Congressman Tim Ryan. This unfair advantage has bigger effects on our national economy than just the cost of steel.

This was not the only problems with the Bay Bridge project.  The project was plagued with huge delays mostly due to shipping and steel construction.  Scott Paul, Alliance for American Manufacturing’s Executive Director explains::

“The problems with the Bay Bridge project could have been avoided if California officials had made it in America. Instead, the project is costing American jobs, undermining California’s environmental goals, and facing numerous delays.”

In a recent Wall Street Journal article Leo Gerard, president of the United Steelworkers union, said Chinese steel’s “supposed cost savings do not take into account the environmental price of shipping steel from hundreds of thousands of miles versus 100 miles, nor the cost to our fragile economic recovery and the loss of American jobs.”

This Wall Street Journal article is creating a stir with some of the leaders in our nations building trades.  General President Walter Wise of the Iron Workers released this rebuttal:

While “U.S. Icons Now Made Of Chinese Steel” accurately depicts the ramifications of subsidized Chinese competition to our strategic steel fabrication industry, the author fails to address methods by which we can commit to re-build its capacity. Rather than abandon the U.S. steel and fabrication market for cheap labor, untested Chinese products, and the insecurity of that supply chain; the commitment to the use of U.S.-produced steel and fabrication to rebuild our 20,000 failed bridges and aging infrastructure will expand and modernize our native capacity with private capital.  In the process, they will create jobs, providing a shot in the arm to the U.S. economy that far outweighs any perceived savings from Chinese purchases. Perhaps most importantly, while the author references “price” six times, not once does he mention value. A $600 million bridge project fabricated by U.S.-based firms and U.S. workers will yield a huge local economic impact.  The same project secured by the Chinese bidder at $500 million, while cheaper, produces an economic boost in China, not here at home where our economy is still struggling to produce jobs.  The “price” of Chinese steel may be low, but the value to American families is nonexistent.

We need to ask ourselves what is better for our economy, buying cheaper and inferior products from China or boosting our national economy by getting more Americans back to work?

The United States as a whole is struggling to find ways to get our economy back on track. The biggest and best thing we can do is get Americans back to work in good paying jobs.  This means we need to revive our American manufacturing, including our steel producers.  Every state is talking about spending hundreds of millions of dollars to rebuild our crumbling infrastructure.  These are the investments we need in our country and our community.

When workers are paid a good wage they spend their money at local stores and shop.  This benefits everyone from the big box store to the small businesses on main street.

We need our politicians at every level to understand that an investment in American manufacturing is an investment in America.

Local NH Manufacturer and Rep Annie Kuster Push For “Made In America”

W.H. Bagshaw President Aaron Bagshaw and Congresswoman Annie Kuster
W.H. Bagshaw President Aaron Bagshaw and Congresswoman Annie Kuster

W.H. Bagshaw President Aaron Bagshaw and Congresswoman Annie Kuster

WASHINGTON, DC – To help celebrate National Small Business Week and to highlight the importance of manufacturing to New Hampshire’s economy, Congresswoman Annie Kuster (NH-02) today hosted Aaron Bagshaw, President of Nashua-based manufacturer W.H. Bagshaw, at a hearing of the House Small Business Committee. The purpose of the hearing, titled Made in the USA: Stories of American Manufacturers, was to highlight the contributions and accomplishments of small manufacturers all across the country that are driving growth, innovation, and job creation in the economy.

“Small manufacturers like W.H. Bagshaw are the backbone of our economy,” Kuster said. “As a member of the Small Business Committee, I am focused on ensuring that Congress is listening to small businesses like W.H. Bagshaw and doing everything we can to support them. I was thrilled to host Aaron at today’s hearing, and to help spotlight the vital role that Granite State manufacturers play in creating jobs and growing our economy.”

Established in 1870, W.H. Bagshaw is the oldest pin manufacturer in the United States. Throughout its history, the company has been a major domestic and international supplier of CNC machined parts and pin and wire products to the medical, aerospace, defense, and high tech industries.

“I want to thank Representative Kuster for inviting me to testify before the Small Business Committee, and for her commitment to supporting small manufacturing firms like ours,” added Aaron Bagshaw, President of the W.H. Bagshaw Company. “As a small business owner, it is so encouraging to know that our voices are being heard and that small business, and manufacturing in particular, is such a priority to our delegation.”

In April, Kuster toured W.H. Bagshaw with Democratic Whip Steny Hoyer (D-MD) to highlight House Democrats’ “Make It In America” plan that focuses on creating the best conditions for American businesses to manufacture their products, innovate, and create jobs in the United States. The “Make It In America” plan emphasizes four key priority areas: adopting and pursuing a national manufacturing strategy, promoting the export of American goods, encouraging businesses to bring jobs and innovation back to the United States, and training and securing a 21st century workforce.

Since taking office, Kuster has consistently worked to support American manufacturing. As part of her ongoing “Congress at Your Company” series, Kuster has toured manufacturing companies all across New Hampshire to hear directly from business owners about how the federal government can better support job creation and economic growth in the Granite State.  In April, Kuster introduced common sense legislation, the Workforce Development Investment Act, that would help strengthen New Hampshire’s workforce and ensure that Granite State manufacturers have access to workers with the skills they need to fill available jobs. Kuster has also urged President Obama to establish a Manufacturing Innovation Institute in New Hampshire to help drive innovation, support job creation, and ensure that the next generation of innovative breakthroughs happens in states like New Hampshire.

Kuster is a member of the House Small Business Committee.

Senator Chris Murphy Pushes ‘BUY AMERICA’ Campaign Into The Senate

senator chris murphy

senator chris murphy

For decades now vulture capitalist like Mitt Romney have been taking good American jobs and shipping them overseas.  Bain Capitol was well known for this and this could have been one of the reasons he ultimately lost the Presidential election.

People overwhelmingly agree that we should increase manufacturing throughout the United States.  During the campaign President Obama said he want to create one million new manufacturing jobs right here at home.

With over 20 million still out of work, bringing jobs back and rebuilding the greatness that once was American Manufacturing should be a top priority.  For Senator Chris Murphy, it is.  He actually ran his campaign for Senate on this very principle.  As a Congressional Representative from Connecticut, Murphy created the “Buy America” Caucus whose sole purpose was to push for policy changes to boost American Manufacturing. 

“I believe our economy cannot recover without a strong manufacturing base” Senator Chris Murphy 

Senator Murphy in partnership with the Alliance for American Manufacturing highlighted four areas that need to be changed that will bring jobs back to the US and help create new long-term jobs

1. Stop the currency manipulation from China by passing Currency Exchange Rate Oversight Reform Act. China continues to manipulate their currency to ensure that their costs are cheaper.  Senator Murphy said “We’re already in a trade war with China, we’re just not fighting it. We need to get more serious.”

2. Tax Reform.  Provide incentives for companies who bring jobs back from overseas and stop subsidizing companies who are outsourcing jobs.

3. Invest in our infrastructure.  One of the issues with American manufacturing is the ability to products to our trade ports.  By building better roads, bridges and trains, manufactures can quickly and easily move their products across the country or around the world.

4. The United States Government needs to practice what it preaches by buying American made products.   Currently the ‘Buy America’ law states that 50% products bought with taxpayer money be made domestically. Senator Murphy says that number should be at a minimum 60% but would like to see it closer to 75%.

Senator Murphy also pointed out that the current ‘Buy America’ law has one very large loophole that must be closed.  If the government buys a product, lets say a gun, but that product is not going to be used within the United States, the law says that it does not have to be made in the USA.   This loophole has been exploited by defense contractors and the DOD. Think of how much money the US Government spent over the last decade fighting two wars.  What would that have done for our economy if we made all of those guns and ammunitions right here at home?  If you remember weapons manufacturing during World War II was one of the way we pulled ourselves out of the Great Depression.

To fight back against this stagnant economy we must start by investing in America, and American Manufacturing.  We need to start building more products and selling them throughout the world.  We need to show that products made right here at home are better quality and economical.  The Alliance for American Manufacturing just opened their new office in Washington D.C. that was built and furnished with American Made products.

Labor unions have taken a beating in the media recently over reduced membership numbers.  Do you want to see unions growing stronger again? If so then we must all start to insist on American Made products.  When American Manufacturing once again flourishes the membership numbers will grow with it.  Oh and that thing that the Republicans are always screaming about, the national debt, that will go away on its own when we increase our GDP.

So if you want to reduce the debt, put millions of people back to work and support labor across the country the answer is simple, BUY AMERICAN!

Carhartt, Made For The American Worker, By American Workers

Carhartt Made In The USA Line of Clothing

Everyone knows the clothing brand, Carhartt.  They make the clothes for people who work outside all day long.  Carhartt has been an American company since 1889 and are growing stronger every year.

The Carhartt brand was started by Hamilton Carhartt who believed as much in workers as he did in his clothes.  He once said

“I believe that when a man wears an article that I manufacture, his self-respect is increased because he knows that it is made by an honest manufacturer, who is honest with his employees”
- Hamilton Carhartt

Carhartt manufactures thousands of different types of clothes from rugged overalls to cool and comfortable t-shirts.  They make these clothes at two facilities in the United States and other facilities around the world.

While I would love to say that all the products they made were made here in the United States, I am still happy to say they have created a “Made in the USA” line. This line of clothing is made by UFCW union members at the Tennessee and Kentucky Mills.  These clothes will have a special ‘Made in the USA’ Logo (see right).

Carhartt serves the blue collar worker and now it is time for the blue collar workers to support Carhartt’s Made in the USA Line.  We need to show the rest of the clothing manufactures that clothes ‘Made in the USA’ sell better than any other brand.

Below is a video created by Carhartt that explains their dedication to the American Worker and to American manufacturing.