Viewing blog posts written by Gino DiCaro


UPDATE on CA MFG job growth

Posted by Gino DiCaro, VP, Communications on Aug. 20, 2019





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California manufacturers will grow with new free trade agreement

Posted by Lance Hastings, President on July 14, 2019

If California were its own country, it would rank as the fifth largest economy in the world. Here, production doesn’t just refer to movies, and tech isn’t just an industry. From cars to computers, smartphones to spaceships, California manufacturers are innovating and making products that will pull our country into the future—doing so with technology that already exists. Our state’s manufacturing industry is poised to grow and thrive as long as lawmakers provide pro-growth policies to enable it—which is exactly why manufacturers here in California and across the nation are calling on Congress to support the United States-Mexico-Canada-Agreement (USMCA) when it comes to a vote.

Last year, leaders from the United States, Canada, and Mexico came together to update the 25-year-old North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA). NAFTA, while forward-thinking for its time, has become increasingly outdated as our technology and modern economy continue to outpace our economic policy. Our countries’ leaders recognized this and signed the USMCA in November 2018. The next step is for Congress to ratify it expeditiously once the administration formally submits it for approval—which we expect to happen soon.

This new deal not only protects free trade throughout North America, it provides a number of long-awaited improvements that will help to shepherd our economy and our manufacturing industry forward for decades to come.

First, the new agreement includes best-in-class rules that would strengthen United States intellectual property (IP) protection and enforcement. Being in such a technology-driven and innovative state, IP rights are critical to a number of sectors and businesses. With even better IP standards that reflect the modern economy, California manufacturers will be emboldened to create new, environmentally friendly, and economical ways to put food on tables across the United States or even to find the next discovery in outer space.

The USMCA would also improve digital rules to ensure companies in the United States using online storefronts have safe and unfettered access to consumers across Mexico and Canada that would help their businesses grow. And let’s not forget about the ways it levels the playing field for many American businesses by improving the way anti-competitive behaviors by state-owned enterprises are addressed and by expanding access into both Canada and Mexico by removing unfair trade barriers. This agreement is undoubtedly beneficial to each North American nation.

To date, Mexico is the only country that has ratified the USMCA. And with data from the National Association of Manufacturers (NAM) showing the positive economic impact the USMCA would have, it is surprising that some in Congress have not shown the same sense of urgency.

California has more than 25,000 manufacturing firms, 93 percent of which are small- and medium-sized, that depend on free trade throughout North America. And these jobs can be found across our state and throughout many different industries, creating well-paying, career-track jobs. In fact, the jobs in our state that are supported by North American trade pay an average of $100,060 in wages and benefits in comparison to an average $54,329 in nonfarm industries.

According to the same NAM study, California’s economy would suffer without the passage of a strong North American trade agreement, with the state’s manufactured goods exported to Canada and Mexico potentially facing between $1.2 billion and $10.1 billion in extra taxes. That’s in comparison to zero tariffs today and it’s completely unacceptable.

Each day that the USMCA is not approved is another day that goes by without certainty for manufacturers. It’s another day that manufacturers could be creating more well-paying, stable jobs for the middle class. As is so often the case, manufacturers are looking to California to lead, to show what is possible and to pull our country into the future by signing the USMCA. We are up to the task, and let’s get to work!





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Group files lawsuit against the State over PAGA

Posted by Gino DiCaro, VP, Communications on June 18, 2019

by Tom Manzo -- CABIA

If you are not familiar with PAGA, it stands for the Private Attorney General Act. It was enacted in 2004 and California is the only state in the union that has such a law. These lawsuits are comprised of late lunches, miscalculated incentives or bonuses, inaccurate employee ID numbers, and just about any labor law violation. PAGA deputizes each and every current and former "aggrieved employee" to sue to recover civil penalties on behalf of the State.

The California Business & Industrial Alliance (CABIA) filed a complaint last month against the state to try to fix the situation for everyone involved.

The facts couldn’t be clearer: Rather than helping employees, PAGA has transferred the state’s power to private attorneys who operate for their own personal gain. PAGA was conceived as a means to help employees right workplace wrongs without further burdening the state bureaucracy. Trial attorneys quickly discovered that they could use the law for their own benefit; the penalties from small workplace clerical errors, multiplied across dozens or hundreds of employees, provide big paydays from the plaintiffs’ representatives with minimal effort.

Today, thousands of PAGA complaints are filed annually against large and small businesses, nonprofit charities and even labor unions. The state’s Department of Industrial Relations maintains a database of more than 35,000 PAGA notices filed by trial attorneys between 2004 and present day. The growth in PAGA notices has been astronomical. Between 2004 and 2008, the number of annual PAGA notices more than tripled; between 2008 and 2015, the number of notices tripled again. In 2016, more than 5,000 PAGA complaints were filed — an astonishing 1,440 percent increase from the law’s first year in effect.

Consider a few recent examples: An October 2018 settlement with retail giant Walmart results in $21 million for the attorneys, and a check average of $108 each for the employees; a January 2018 settlement with Uber netted $2.3 million for the lawyers, and $1.08 each for the drivers. And in a $1 million settlement with Google, the attorney got $330k and each employee got $15.50. In our complaint it shows that an error of 2 minutes a day over the course of the year would short the employee $ 28.61 and the penalties would be over $ 69,000. Imagine if you had 30 employees or more?

Labor unions aren’t immune: The United Farm Workers union got hit with a PAGA complaint that cost it $1.3 million — money that is being taken from the dues of farm workers. The Humane Society has been hit; so have the Children’s Homes and the Salvation Army. Even our governor-elect, Gavin Newsom, had a series of PAGA complaints filed against his company PlumpJack Management Group. CABIA's lawsuit isn’t about letting companies skate on wrongdoing; rather, they want the state to do its job and enforce labor law violations.
 



Tags: PAGA


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Manufacturing 4.0 is here!

Posted by Gino DiCaro, VP, Communications on May 30, 2019

The digital revolution is here. Manufacturing's digital revolution has brought about sweeping and dramatic change to the industry. From the connected factory to the proliferation of data to the leadership and culture necessary to embrace this digital shift, manufacturers of all sizes are exploring how to deploy new technologies and leverage them for a competitive advantage.

This is why CMTA has partnered with the Manufacturing Leadership Summit which takes place June 10-12 in Huntington Beach, CA, and is an event like no other for exploring Manufacturing 4.0 practices. Highlights from this year’s Summit agenda include:

  • A Leadership 4.0 keynote from Dow Chemical Senior VP Peter Holicki
  • Inspiring case studies from 3M and Saint-Gobain
  • Think tanks focused on IT/OT integration, sustainability, digital workforce skills, 5G networks, 3D printing, and more
  • The Manufacturing Leadership Awards program and gala, recognizing operational excellence

More than ever, deploying and integrating these new digital technologies is necessary for remaining competitive. CMTA members are receiving a special invitation to register for this event at the NAM member rate. We hope to see you there!





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#MakingCA is pulsing through the State

Posted by Gino DiCaro, VP, Communications on May 10, 2019

Last week CMTA attended two regional manufacturing summits carrying our message of collaboration and focus to advance manufacturing throughout California. These Summits were hosted by the AMBayArea in Oakland and the San Joaquin Valley Manufacturing Alliance in Fresno.  We also toured the facility of CMTA's newest member AB&I Foundry in Oakland where we saw firsthand why their 240 workers' average company-longevity is more than 19 years. AB&I makes cast iron pipe and fittings -- mostly from recycled material -- and it's a spectacular place for career growth and opportunity.  The company invested $1 million alone in new training for their workers just last year.

At the Valley Made conference in Fresno we conveyed the State of Manufacturing to the 700 attendees and CMTA President Lance Hastings conducted a live interview on KMJNow (you can listen here, it starts at 6:50) and taped some highlights with Valley PBS that will be packaged into a Central Valley-focused program to be aired in the near future.  The growing passion for manufacturing at the whole conference was palpable. SJVMA's Genelle Kumpe, Troy Brandt, and CMTA member Mike Bettts are driving a resurgence and passion for manufacturing that we should all carry with us throughout the state

At the AMBayArea event we heard about the great opportunities that manufacturers have to re-shore their operations from the Reshoring Institute's Rosemary Coates and the event, put on by James Gardner and his team, should be a fixture for Bay Area manufacturers in the future with tremendously resourceful breakout sessions.

We also atttended Bayer's exciting groundbreaking for their $150 million investment in a new Cell Culture Technology Center in Berkeley.

The #MakingCA agenda is clearly pulsing through California and we couldn't be more excited. 

 

AB&I Foundry Tour.

 

 

LEFT: CMTA's Hastings & DiCaro with CA Forward's Pete Webber   RIGHT: CMTA's Hastings on KMJ Live radio

 

 

 

 

 





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