Made in America: Manufacturing, farm groups urge President, Congress to pass TPP trade pact

by Talk Business & Politics staff ([email protected]) 101 views 

Editor’s note: Each Sunday, Talk Business & Politics provides “Made In America,” a round-up of state and global manufacturing news.

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NAM, FARM BUREAU AND OTHER GROUPS URGE PRESIDENT, CONGRESS TO PASS TPP TRADE PACT
The National Association of Manufacturers (NAM), the American Farm Bureau Federation, the Coalition of Services Industries and the Information Technology Industry Council joined together on Sept. 21 to urge President Obama and congressional leaders to expedite passage of the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) trade agreement this year.

In their joint letter, the heads of the four groups explained both the importance of trade to private-sector economic growth and how TPP passage would expand U.S. access to nearly half a billion consumers in the Asia-Pacific region to the benefit of America’s agricultural, manufacturing, service and technology sectors.

“Without the TPP, manufacturers in the U.S. are losing market share to countries that already have their own agreements that disadvantage U.S. manufacturing,” said NAM Vice President of International Economic Affairs Linda Dempsey.

Click here to read the full letter.

LR WORKFORCE GROUP RECEIVES $900,000 GRANT FOR ALTERNATIVE YOUTH TRAINING PROGRAM
The Little Rock Workforce Investment Board was the Arkansas awardee to receive part of $80.3 million in grants for alternative youth employment strategies.

The city group received $900,000 in YouthBuild grants to help young people struggling to reach key educational and career milestones and to equip them to be successful in the workforce and engaged in their communities. The U.S. Labor Department made the announced on Thursday (Sept. 22).

YouthBuild program is a community-based, alternative education program that provides job training and educational opportunities for at-risk youth, ages 16-24. The grants announced range from approximately $700,000 to $1.1 million each and will fund 77 YouthBuild programs.

The grants will help approximately 5,000 at-risk youth complete high school or state equivalency degree programs; earn industry-recognized certifications within in-demand occupations; and gain construction skills training to build housing for low-income or homeless individuals and families in their communities.

BUSY WEEK FOR MANUFACTURING JOB ANNOUNCEMENTS IN ARKANSAS
It was a busy week in Arkansas for manufacturing-related job announcements. Here’s a sample of what was reported:

  • Lecheek to add 100 jobs in Harrison as part of $6.7 million expansion
  • FMH Conveyors $12.5 million expansion nearly complete in Jonesboro
  • Intimidator expands its Batesville operations, will add 400 jobs over four years
  • Bad Boy Mowers moving into Australia market
  • Nucor to invest $230 million, add 100 jobs at Arkansas steel mill operation

All told, the moves amount to more than 700 new jobs at manufacturers across the state. Read more at our Manufacturing microsite at this link.