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California needs more champions of manufacturingPosted by Gino DiCaro, VP, Communications on Nov. 22, 2013
California's manufacturers are capable of meeting extraordinary challenges and will be the engine of job creation if they have the resources skilled workforce and the long term support of state and local communities.
California's unemployment rate fell from 8.9 percent to 8.7 percent in October but California unfortunately lost another 5,600 manufacturing jobs according to this week's Labor Market Information report.
Even with a few previous growth spurts in the Golden State's manufacturing sector, the overall trend since 2010 shows a widening gap between the United States' 4.59 percent manufacturing job growth and California's 0.55 percent.
While the recent loss and the overall trendline vs the country does not bode well for California's economy and middle class workers, there are positive developments that should be noted along with some of the previous job increases.
We have a commitment from the Governor's Office of Economic and Business Development (GoBiz) to grow this industry and a consistent acknowledgement from them that California's economy needs this innovative and high wage industry that pays an average $77,000 salary. They are making strides in attracting and retaining manufacturing and making sure the industry knows it is their priority. See some of their tweets from this week pasted below, showing recent expansions from China, conversions from printing faciliities to manufacturing plants, aerospace growth, etc.
We appreciate all that GoBiz is doing to champion new policies to grow manufacturing and put boots on the ground to recruit and retain investments. We can't turn this trend around without their unfettered and unending committment. On the flip side, they also can't do it alone. They need an army of local and state leaders with an intense dedication to the entire statewide effort. Every new policy and inititative should at the very least not harm the plan to grow manufacturing and in many cases seek to grow the sector with real outcomes.
It will take a consolidated effort from both the policymakers as well as the economic development soldiers tasked with growing the economies of their regions within the state's borders. Everyone should be encouraging manufacturers to plant their economy-boosting roots here in California.
Some tweets this week from GoBIZ:
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