Viewing blog posts written by Dorothy Rothrock

What Matters: Time to talk to your legislator!

Posted by Dorothy Rothrock, President on March 23, 2018

The legislature has introduced thousands of new bills to vote on in the months ahead.  We look for impacts on manufacturers and either support or oppose the bills.  While lobbying legislators on those bills, we talk about the existing rules, regulations and taxes already impacting California manufacturers.  The costs of doing business are already too high and the burdens grow every year.

A new regulation might be well-intended to solve a real problem, but the cumulative costs of all California regulations are overwhelming for manufacturers. The high costs of doing business threaten to make many more California manufacturers uncompetitive in the marketplace.  Manufacturers won’t be able to make investments and create jobs if their costs are too high.

State leaders like to tout the size of California’s economy and how many thousands of jobs we have created since the end of the recession - more than any other state! In fact just today the state reported that we added 14,000 jobs last month among all sectors.  That’s good, but not good enough. What really matters is how we are doing compared to other states on an apples-to-apples basis.  The sad truth is that we are only attracting half the number of new manufacturing jobs than we should on a population adjusted basis.  And since the recession’s end we attracted barely two percent of the country’s manufacturing investments even though California has more than 10 percent of US manufacturing.  We are losing manufacturing muscle because costs are too high.  If investments don’t come here, jobs will be lost in the future.  

So if a new bill increases the cost of doing business, even a little bit, we will do our best to tell legislators why that matters.  If they are serious about protecting and promoting new middle-class manufacturing jobs, they will listen and modify their proposals. 

State legislators are “home” in the district next week during the spring break. You can help us lobby on the bills by reminding your legislator about the taxes you pay and the regulations for which you struggle to comply.  You can use this tool to find your legislator's phone number to call. You can also use the tool to send him or her a tweet.

Also sign up for our mobile text alerts and watch for our messages in April, May and June when votes and hearings go into full swing.  You can do so by texting “mfgchamp” to 916-571-9360. Thanks for helping us keep manufacturing a growing part of the California economy.

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CMTA President opines on lawsuits shaking down CA manufacturers in the name of climate change

Posted by Gino DiCaro, VP, Communications on March 22, 2018

In an op-ed published by The Sacramento Bee, California Manufacturers & Technology Association President Dorothy Rothrock highlighted California manufacturers’ leading role in tackling the global problem of climate change and how new lawsuits will not help:

California manufacturers are big players in the state’s efforts to address climate change. The largest companies are regulated through a program that will greatly reduce emissions and grow the economy at the same time. The result will be a win-win for jobs and the environment.

Yet the climate liability litigation filed by eight California municipalities against manufacturers are actually discouraging those efforts.  These lawsuits stack a large financial burden on manufacturers, businesses and consumers in California, while enriching trial lawyers:

A big payday for the trial attorneys, not a solution to global climate change, is the main motivation for these suits. The attorneys and municipalities don’t care that their lawsuits hurt California’s ambitious climate change policies. . . . 

The unjustified lawsuits will add costs to energy manufacturers by forcing them to defend or settle the cases. Those costs will be passed on to consumers, other manufacturers and businesses that depend on fuel for transportation and production. Piling these new costs on top of the reasonable costs related to cap and trade could push production out of state along with their emissions. 

Rothrock also highlights the blatant discrepancies between the lawsuits filed by the municipalities and their bond offerings when it comes to climate change risks:

San Mateo County claims that it is “particularly vulnerable” to sea-level rise and that there is a 93 percent it will experience a “devastating” flood before 2050. Marin County is even more certain, calculating a 99 percent risk of a devastating flood before 2050. But contrast that with bond offerings in 2014 and 2016 where investors were told that the county “is unable to predict whether sea-level rise or other impacts of climate change or flooding from a major storm will occur."

The Manufacturers Accountability Project is leading the national charge on these lawsuits and they are focused on exposing the questionable motives of the trial attorneys, city governments and activists that are involved in targeting manufacturers in the United States. 

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State of MFG tour shows why manufacturers are the crown gem of California

Posted by Gino DiCaro, VP, Communications on March 19, 2018

“California is at the intersection of innovation, technology, and modern manufacturing. While our country struggles to fill important jobs in the manufacturing sector, our employers are committed to upskilling the workforce so that as we create new, well-paying jobs in manufacturing, we are also ensuring we have the skilled workforce to fill them.”

That quote from CMTA's Dorothy Rothrock during the National Association of Manufacturers' State of MFG tour captured exactly why we should be so excitied about manufacturing in Califrnia.

We are so pleased the National Association of Manufacturers brought their State of MFG tour to California this month. It is important to underscore the tremendous opportunities and incredible innovations that are created on factory floors all over California.

The annual NAM State of Manufacturing Tour focuses the nation’s attention on the industry that is the backbone of the American economy, highlighting the more than 12 million men and women who are building our future. The tour brings policy discussions and conversations about the future of work to shop floors, schools, tv studios, even the White House.

“California is a hub for innovation and technology, and it’s driving modern manufacturing,” said Timmons. “The research and development happening in the Golden State is paving the way for our industry’s future.”

The California tour stops were in San Francisco and San Jose and they rolled through a t-shirt manufacturer (Social Imprints), a plant based alternative food manufacturer (JUST), a leather belt manufacturer (Circa), a flexible hybrid electronic manufacturer and trainer (NextFlex), and a truck engine research and design facility (PACCAR).

Here’s what these places had in common:

  • Great places to work
  • Tremendous opportunities for workers
  • Operational efficiencies in technology and innovation
  • Investments for the future
  • Contributions to their communities

Everything else varied widely -- from types of workers, products, challenges, market share, facility floors … everything.

Despite the differences there was no denying that manufacturers are major contributors and create pathways for middle class growth and upward mobility. Every lawmaker in California should be looking for policies that make it easy to invest and put more bolts in the ground in the Golden State.


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MFG job growth update

Posted by Gino DiCaro, VP, Communications on March 19, 2018

Here's a quick manufacturing job growth update before the March revision comes out next week

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Bay Area MFG group putting together a whopper of a Summit

Posted by Gino DiCaro, VP, Communications on March 11, 2018

Manufacturers in northern California have a great opportunity on May 24 (from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.) to attend the Association of Manufacturers Bay Area (AMBayarea) Summit in Oakland California. 

The event has already grown to approximately 175 attendees and the number is sure to get larger.  At the Summit you'll learn about the growing talent pipeline, hear from experts on bottom line issues and network with a large group from the manufacturing community.

Regional manufacturing groups like AMBayArea provide an effective way to grow your business and at the same time raise the collective voice of manufacturing. 

Keynoting the event is the Manufacturing Institute's very own Carolyn Lee. As Executive Director, Carolyn leads the Institute’s workforce development efforts to close the skills gap and inspire Americans to enter the U.S. manufacturing workforce, focusing on women, youth, and veterans. Carolyn will address the Institute’s initiatives, national programs and best practices that are making a real difference to increase the talent pipeline, and she will detail opportunities available to Bay Area manufacturers.

CMTA will attend and we hope to see you there. Details HERE.


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