This blog is powered the Precision Metalforming Association (PMA). Metalforming is a $137-billion industry in North America, creating precision metal products for sectors from aerospace to medicine. We hope you'll check back often for the latest in industry news because...Metalforming Matters.
One Voice Cheers President Obama’s Signing of Workforce Training Bill
President Obama signed the new workforce training bill into law today, as anticipated. PMA and our One Voice partner, NTMA, have long been supporters of efforts to get the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act ("WIOA") passed and signed. Get more information on the new law in our press release below -
Cheers President Obama’s Signing of Workforce Training Bill Manufacturing Associations Hope that New Legislation Will Help Combat Sector’s Growing Skills Gap
The bipartisan bill, which passed
both the House and the Senate by wide margins, updates the Workforce Investment
Act of 1998 and covers dozens of job training programs. The legislation,
“WIOA,” is part of ongoing efforts to close the skills gap in the U.S.
manufacturing sector and enable employers to find and hire workers with the
skills needed for competitiveness in modern manufacturing.
The bill’s provisions, among
others, eliminate outdated programs; provide accountability and data reporting
requirements; require implementation of industry or sector partnerships and
career pathway strategies and, increase the ability to use on-the-job training
(reimbursement rates up to 75%) and incumbent worker training (may use up to
20% of local funds).
Importantly, the bill also
prioritizes the use of industry-recognized standards and credentials.
This inclusion is especially significant for One Voice as NTMA and PMA are
among the founders of the National Institute for Metalworking Skills (NIMS) and
remain active in setting the bar for skills standards in the metalworking
According to a recent One Voice
survey, nearly 75% of members in both NTMA and PMA have job openings in
manufacturing plants, and 80% report that they are having challenges recruiting
“The skills gap is a pressing
challenge that has caused many U.S. manufacturers to have serious shortages of
qualified potential employees,” said NTMA President Dave Tilstone. “Our
members have seen this problem first-hand and we are hopeful that this new
legislation will help with recruitment and retention for our sector which is
vitally important to the American economy.”
“The good news is that the U.S.
manufacturing sector is only expanding,” said PMA President Bill Gaskin.
“We are pleased that our voices have been heard and our government is taking
this important step to support our members and the manufacturing industry as a
About One Voice: The
National Tooling and Machining Association’s (NTMA) and the Precision
Metalforming Association’s (PMA) combined “One Voice” federal government
advocacy program represents nearly 3,000 metalworking companies and is designed
to promote U.S. government policies that will ensure a strong manufacturing
sector in the United States. For additional information, please visit www.metalworkingadvocate.org.
Guest Blogger Kelly Barner, Editor, Buyers Meeting Point Think globally, act locally. – Paul McCartney …except when to do so causes more harm than good. – Kelly Barner As consumers of goods and services, we are constantly bombarded with feel good messages about the companies we buy from. Green production, sustainability, and local sourcing: it is easy to take for granted that these programs are in everyone’s best interests. After all, why wouldn’t we want the companies we patronize to keep the bigger picture in mind and take every opportunity to do a little bit of good in the process of making a profit? Business to business operations have to take a different kind of approach to such initiatives as their immediate customers are usually more motivated by efficiency and innovation than socially-oriented programs. Procurement and purchasing professionals play a unique role in B2B local sourcing; we have to outline the pros and cons and help the rest of the company dec
President Trump announced via tweet on Monday that he was imposing tariffs on steel and aluminum imports from Brazil and Argentina due to both governments devaluating their currencies. These two countries previously had reached a deal with the Trump administration to avoid Section 232 steel and aluminum tariffs by agreeing to quotas. Both Argentina and Brazil were exempted from the 232 steel and aluminum tariffs in May 2018. The tariffs can’t be “restored” because the two countries were not subject to tariffs in the first place. The exemptions for both countries required Presidential Proclamations, and to change the quotas to tariffs would require new proclamations as tariffs can’t be re-imposed by a tweet. At this writing, we are still awaiting these proclamations. If the President does move forward with these tariffs, it would likely lead to an immediate legal challenge. A current U.S. Court of International Trade case (Transpacific Steel v U.S.) is focused on this exact issue of
On September 24, the Department of Labor (DOL) announced its final overtime exemption rule issued under the Fair Labor Standards Act, increasing the minimum salary threshold for workers to qualify for overtime pay when working more than 40 hours per week. By increasing the threshold for employers subject to the federal standard to $35,568, up from the current threshold of $23,660 set in 2004, the agency claims 1.3 million more American workers will be eligible for overtime pay. The DOL’s final rule, which goes into effect on January 1, 2020, includes: Increasing the minimum salary required for an employee to qualify for exemption from the currently enforced level of $455 to $684 per week ($35,568 annually); Increasing the total annual compensation requirement for “highly compensated employees” (HCE) from the currently enforced level of $100,000 to $107,432 per year; Allowing employers to use nondiscretionary bonuses and incentive payments (including commissions) that are paid