US allocates $1.3bn for Investing in Manufacturing Communities

Posted on 29 May 2014 by Tim Brown

The Obama administration has designated the first 12 regions to receive funding as a part of the Government's Investing in Manufacturing Communities Partnership, a plan aimed at spurring investment and creating jobs.

It is hoped that the $1.3bn (£780m) US Commerce Department-led programme will accelerate the resurgence of manufacturing in communities nationwide. The money will be spent on supporting long-term economic development strategies in the manufacturing sector and help to increase international trade and exports.

“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 US Secretary of Commerce Penny Pritzker.

“IMCP is a critical part of our ‘Open for Business Agenda’ to strengthen the American manufacturing sector and attract more investment to the United States. Innovative programs like IMCP encourage American communities to work together to craft  strong, clear, strategic plans to attract manufacturing investment and jobs to transform themselves into globally competitive commercial hubs.”

Later this year, the White House will convene the more than seventy communities that applied for the Investing in Manufacturing Communities Partnership to share best practices in economic development planning and attracting new jobs and investment in manufacturing.

Don’t miss The Manufacturer of the Year Awards this year

The Manufacturer of the Year Awards is dedicated to recognising and celebrating industry achievement and highlighting the diversity and strength of UK manufacturing.

This year the event will take place at the ICC Birmingham on November 27th, 2014. Entry Deadline – 31st July 2014.

Click here for more information and to download the entry information.

The 12 communities chosen for the first allocation of funding for the Investing in Manufacturing Communities Manufacturing Communities programe are:

Southwest Alabama
Home to 14 major shipbuilders and many more small manufacturers making everything from U.S. Navy vessels to commercial tug boats, Mobile, Alabama and the surrounding Southwest Alabama area, including Baldwin, Choctaw, Clarke, Conecuh, Escambia, Mobile, Monroe, and Washington counties, led by the University of South Alabama, are strengthening and expanding their workforce partnerships to compete for shipbuilding and aerospace manufacturing.

Southern California
At the vanguard of innovation in aerospace manufacturing and home to innovative companies like SpaceX, AeroVironment, and Sapphire Energy, the Los Angeles, Orange, San Diego, and Ventura counties, led by the University of Southern California Center for Economic Development, are investing in infrastructure to reduce shipping costs, higher today due to congestion by 50-250%, and developing a regional workforce training consortium in manufacturing.

Northwest Georgia
Called the “Carpet Capital of the World” for producing over 70% of the nation’s carpet, the Dalton County and Northwest Georgia region led by the Northwest Georgia Regional Commission is transferring innovations from its universities into its local supply chain and out into the skills of its workforce to spur a more sustainable floor covering industry.

The Chicago Metro Region
Home to 3,700 metals and machining companies, the Chicago metro region including Cook, DuPage, Kane, Kendall, Lake, McHenry, and Will counties, led by the Cook County Bureau of Economic Development, has formed an integrated strategy to strengthen its lead in metals and machining leveraging local strengths like its strong transportation access – including six Class 1 railroads, seven interstates, and the nation’s second busiest cargo airport.

South Kansas
The 27-county region around Wichita, Kansas is the most manufacturing-specialized metro area in the country with 32% of employment in manufacturing, half of which is in the aerospace supply chain. Led by Wichita State University, South Kansas is leveraging shared research and innovation facilities to compete on the frontier of advanced materials used in planes, cutting-edge machinery, and refineries.

Greater Portland Region in Maine
With arguably more breweries per capita than anywhere else in the country and over 60 food processers and hundreds of home microbusinesses, Cumberland County, home to Portland, Maine, is a food processing powerhouse. Led by the Greater Portland Council of Governments, the community is upgrading its port and improving the transportation and distribution efficiency of its supply chains to grow its lead in sustainable food production.

Southeastern Michigan
Thirteen counties in Southeastern Michigan, including the cities of Detroit, Flint, Lansing, Ann Arbor, and Pontiac, produce 22% of all vehicles made in America and at $14 billion a year, account for over 70% of total U.S. auto research investment. Led by the Wayne County Economic Development Growth Engine, Southeastern Michigan is building on its strengths in connected-vehicle technologies, including technologies that allow cars to communicate with each other and with the road to carry their passengers more safely and efficiently to their destinations.

The New York Finger Lakes Region
With over 120 photonics manufacturers and more than 500 photonics patents last year alone, the Greater Rochester region, led by the City of Rochester, is bringing new life to manufacturing business parks and expanding its workforce development efforts to maintain its historic lead in precision machining and optics, photonics, and imaging.

Southwestern Ohio Aerospace Region
The birthplace of modern aviation, with over 116,000 manufacturing workers across all stages of the aerospace supply chain, the 27 counties along the I-75 Corridor, led by the City of Cincinnati, are expanding industry-led curriculum and training and launching efforts to certify more small manufacturers for aerospace manufacturing.

The Tennessee Valley
In the past two years alone, more than 150 auto and auto parts manufacturers have announced expansions or new facilities in the Tennessee Valley automotive region, which spans 69 counties in Tennessee and portions of southern Kentucky, north Alabama, and north Georgia. Led by the University of Tennessee, the region is better connecting its nationally renowned research institutions with manufacturers to move up the value chain in automotive manufacturing.

The Washington Puget Sound Region
The counties along the I-90 and I-5 Aerospace Corridors in Washington State host the largest aerospace cluster in the world, with over 132,000 aerospace-related employees and more than 1,350 aerospace firms. Led by the Puget Sound Regional Council, the region is working with local employers to identify training needs and to develop new manufacturing capabilities to strength its aerospace supply chains.

The Milwaukee 7 Region
Known as the “Machine Shop of the World”, the seven-county Milwaukee region in Southeast Wisconsin employs than 15% of its workforce in manufacturing. Led by the Redevelopment Authority of the City of Milwaukee, the region is building on its historic strengths in precision machining to attract new jobs and investment in energy and power, water technologies, and food and beverage manufacturing.