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143 MFG day events registered in CA - 7 things you can do

Posted by Gino DiCaro, VP, Communications on Sept. 17, 2018

There are 143 manufacturing events registered in California for the National Association of Manufacturers' MFGDay on October 5, 2018.  We need to hit 150 to show California's manufacturing chops in 2018. 

Here are some some things you can do to make your MFG Day a success.

One of the most important things to do is to establish a connection with your guests. Those few hours you spend with them are your chance to communicate the importance of what you do — and the creativity, advanced skills and technology required to do it. Ideally, your passion will spark something similar in the young people who you introduce to manufacturing, inspiring them to learn more about the industry and one day join the manufacturing team.

Follow these seven rules of thumb to improve your chances of connecting with your guests and inspire the next generation of modern manufacturers.


In planning a good tour — especially when the intended audience members are primarily people with no manufacturing background — you have to start by creating a story of your company that anyone could understand.

How did your company get started?

What do you make? Who buys your products?

What do they do with them?

Keep explanations simple and free of industry jargon. Think storytelling with illustrations rather than textbooks packed with pages of small print.



The quickest way to lose the interest of your visitors is to try to show every bit of minutiae. Pick a few stops that represent key stages in the production process and allow you to demonstrate the progress a product makes through the shop.

What are the best places in the plant to give an overview of the production process and highlight the work of your people and machinery?

Where will visitors get the best view? Can they hear you?

Which of your team members are the most enthusiastic about their work and comfortable explaining what they do and why it is important to the process and the company?

These considerations should guide you in planning the tour.



Of course you can’t allow visitors to get up close and personal with your machinery, but you could create a display that illustrates what a product looks like in various stages of completion, where they could be allowed to pick up and hold something they’ve seen made.

Maybe you even have something that one of your machines can make that they could take with them as a souvenir? (This doesn’t mean one of your production parts or finished products!)



No clutter, everything in its place, floors swept clean, a path through the shop is easy to follow.

Remember that part of the reason to invite visitors to Manufacturing Day events is to prove that manufacturing facilities are great places to work. First impressions count: What does your company look like as visitors approach from the parking lot? Let’s dispel the myths that manufacturing is dark, dirty and dangerous.

Also, make sure employees are dressed neat and clean on tour day and if they have a role to play in explaining things to your visitors, they should be wearing a name badge so that they can be addressed by name when there are questions.



Students are the workforce of the future. This is your opportunity to provide advice about the kinds of careers that your company offers, the type of training and educational coursework you seek when hiring employees. There is no better time to offer comments about opportunities available to dedicated workers with a professional attitude. If there are specific kinds of training or skills that you need and find it hard to hire for, let them know.



This is important both literally and figuratively. Put a sign on the door, shake hands with visitors, thank them for coming, and demonstrate your enthusiasm for the opportunity you have to share your company’s information with them.



Manufacturing Day is a national celebration of the 12 million talented men and women who work in the industry. Who could you invite to share this celebration with you? Here are some ideas:

The families of your employees. If family events aren’t a common occurrence at your company, this is a perfect day to invite families to come and see where their family member works and learn what they do. Maybe you could do a special event just for family members at the end of the workday.

Your elected officials. Ever complain about the fact that your elected officials (local, state, federal) don’t make good choices as related to manufacturing? Invite them to come to your plant and see for themselves. Remember: Most elected officials have never set foot inside a manufacturing facility, which means you can educate them!

Potential customers. Give these folks a reason to want to do business with you. Invite them in on a day when they can see how great your organization is.

Current customers. Make Manufacturing Day your customer appreciation day. Your business service providers. When was the last time you were visited by your banker, insurance agent or accountant?

Media. Is there a local reporter who seems to have a serious interest in manufacturing? Invite them to visit your plant on Manufacturing Day. They are always looking for interesting stories to tell. Why not make it yours?

Youth organizations. Are you active in, or do you know someone who is active in the Boy Scouts, Girl Scouts or a similar youth organization? Invite them to visit your company as a field trip. Better yet, invite a school group.


Download NAM's Host Toolkit

Download Media Guide

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CMTA takes positions on 2 Fall initiatives that impact manufacturers

Posted by Dorothy Rothrock, President on Sept. 7, 2018

The November 2018 ballot includes 12 measures for voters to consider. CMTA has taken a position on two of the measures, recommending that voters support Proposition 3 to issue a bond for the financing of water projects and oppose Proposition 10 to expand local governments’ authority to impose rent control ordinances. Each measure will have an impact on California manufacturing jobs and investments, as described here:

Proposition 3 creates an $8.87 billion general obligation bond to finance projects related to water, storage, conservation, quality and watershed protection and maintenance. During the recent multi-year drought in California, manufacturers were able to maintain operations by embracing water conservation, recycling and reuse practices. Despite these best efforts, as the economy and population grows in the coming years, the demands for water will increase and our ability to serve all residential, commercial, agriculture and manufacturing needs will be stretched. This funding, with the specific inclusion of storage and supply related projects, will help keep water flowing to maintain manufacturing projects and jobs for the long term. CMTA Supports Proposition 3

Proposition 10 repeals existing law and would allow local governments to impose rent control on previously exempt properties. High housing costs are a challenge for manufacturers who need skilled workers near plants and facilities, but imposing rent control is the wrong way to go. In fact, it is likely that rent controls would reduce the supply and availability of housing, encourage investments in other types of development, and ultimately increase prices. We should be asking our state legislators to work on more sensible and effective ways to increase the supply of housing and make rents and home purchases affordable for California families. CMTA Opposes Proposition 10

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CMTA in the field to promote MFG at four big events

Posted by Gino DiCaro, VP, Communications on Sept. 1, 2018

This is the time of the year -- after the Legislature has closed down for the session and before the holiday months ensue -- that provides a perfect opportunity for CMTA to go out into the field to promote the benefits of California manufacturing and some solutions to the sector's challenges.  

Among many events, there are four particular gatherings, for which CMTA'ers are participating, that should be of interest to manufacturers in their respective regions:


1. The Industrial Association of Contra Costa County Forum - "New Regulatory Climate: An Industry Leadership Perspective"

CMTA's Dorothy Rothrock will join Western States Petroleum Assn. President Cathy Reheis Boyd to discuss the implementation of AB 617, which is a bill that resulted from the 2017 cap and trade negotiations to further reduce air pollution in local air districts. Lots of industry from the East Bay will be on hand to discuss how to ensure CARB's proper implementation of the policy.

The forum will take place at Zio Fraedos Restaurant at 611 Gregory Lane, Pleasant Hill, CA.

Tuesday, September 11, 11:30 am to 1:30 pm



2. CALMatters panel on climate change - "California is a Global Model for Climate Policy"

CMTA's Michael Shaw is a panelist joining former State Senator Fran Pavley and John White, Executive Director for the Center for Energy Efficiency & Renewable Technologies, (and other TBD's) to discuss what has worked and what hasn't in California's ambitious climate change policies. 

The event will take place at the Public Policy Institute of California 500 Washington St, Bechtel Conference Center (1st Floor) San Francisco, CA 94111

Wednesday September 12, noon to 1:30 pm



3. IEA / CMTA 34th Annual Environmental Training Symposium and Conference - "Strategies for Success on California's Environmental Frontier"

CMTA's Dawn Koepke is a featured speaker, presenting on some of California's specific environmental regulatory requirements facing manufacturers.  There are many panels to see at this great annual conference co-hosted by CMTA.

The two-day conference will take place at the San Diego Convention Center at 111 West Harbor Drive, San Diego, CA 92101

Thursday, Sept 27 to Friday, September 28



4. The Ventura County Economic Development Assn. Business Outlook Conference - "Accelerating Value Creation: The Future of Manufacturing, Technology and Innovation in Ventura Co."

CMTA's Gino DiCaro will join other speakers and present the State of California Manufacturing, as well as some of CMTA's efforts in the State Capitol to address the challlenges of new manufacturing investment in California.

More than 200 attendees will attend the conference at the Ronald Ronald Reagan Library in Simi Valley.

Friday, October 5 at 7:30 am 


** Coincidentally this event is happening on National Manufacturing Day (MFGday) and is a great way to further promote the tremendous benefits manufacturing brings to California's economy and working families

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How high is too high for CA electricity rates

Posted by Dorothy Rothrock, President on Aug. 29, 2018

When will electric rates be so high that California consumers start to revolt? We may find out sooner than later.

This Friday state legislators could decide to put ratepayers on the hook for billions of dollars in wildfire damages. They have already voted to pass a bill to require 100% renewable energy by 2045. Both decisions will massively increase costs for utility customers, on top of the high rates already in place. Manufacturers and other groups are saying “enough!” and asking legislators to vote down the wildfire bill and asking the Governor to veto the 100% renewable requirement. Neither is necessary and both come with extraordinarily high costs.

California manufacturers already pay electricity rates that are more than 80% higher than the national average and rates will move higher as stringent new emissions-free energy mandates go into effect. We don’t know how high rates will be in the future. We do know that middle class manufacturing jobs will disappear as ever higher electric rates diverts resources from expansions, modernization, wages, and product development.

We need to find ways to improve safety and clean the energy system without loading more costs on the backs of ratepayers. Wildfire liability should be equitably shared between utility shareholders, insurers and ratepayers. Forcing ratepayers to pay all the costs is expensive, short-sighted and unnecessary to keep utilities financially sound. The bill to mandate 100% clean energy is not necessary to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and, ironically, could impede our efforts to meet long-term reduction goals by making the program more expensive.

Lawmakers and the Governor have time to push the pause button on these big energy deals, assess what the costs of all mandates will be in the coming years and take steps to protect ratepayers, jobs and the economy. Don’t rush to pass legislation that will be responsible for skyrocketing electric bills.

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Support CMTA's MFG Maker Breaker grassroots program

Posted by Gino DiCaro, VP, Communications on Aug. 27, 2018

The California State Legislature shuts down this Friday and CMTA has approximately 12 "MFG Maker Breaker" bills that will likely go to their respective floors for votes. Four bills are supported "Makers" and the rest are opposed "Breakers".  There is also important and developing wildfire legislation that will have impacts on utility ratepayers.

You can help us educate the Legislature with our simple tool and get updates simply by texting "mfgchamp" to 916-571-9360.

California manufacturing growth and the ability to make long term investments in the state is critical to our economic viability, and for the funding of our government programs. Supporting CMTA's MFG Maker Breaker grassroots program will help improve the state's manufacturing investment climate.  Opt in now!


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