Six American Manufacturing Communities Federally Designated for the Defense Industrial Base

The Department of Defense, Office of Economic Adjustment announced today that six manufacturing communities were selected in a competitive process to be federally designated “manufacturing communities” that will qualify them for federal funding in ways that will leverage state, local and private funding and leadership to ensure that the material our military needs has a manufacturing supply chain that is strong and resilient. The manufacturing regions selected are within the states of AL, CA, CT, OH, PA, UT, and WV.

Over 40 regions across America went through a rigorous selection process that required each to organize a public private partnership of regional leaders to work together to analyze their strengths and improve the workforce and the many other elements essential for a healthy manufacturing sector.

This federal designation program was in part modeled after the successful 24-region Investing in Manufacturing Communities Partnership (IMCP) program set up to help implement sustainable economic development plans that lead to good paying jobs in thriving manufacturing sectors across the country. Most of those communities are now represented by the American Manufacturing Communities Collaborative (AMCC) .

“Since manufacturing is the foundation of our economy, we are pleased to see investments in making the things that America needs. As it relates to national defense, it is critically important that we ensure that the equipment our military uses is produced in America by suppliers with a highly trained and well paid American workforce using secure and cutting edge technologies,” says Matt Bogoshian, AMCC Executive Director.

“Manufacturing community partnerships like this can create a more inclusive and resilient manufacturing sector which is essential for a stronger national defense” says Andrew Stettner, a Senior Fellow at The Century Foundation. “It is a testament to the importance of regional economic development that 40 communities stood at the ready to meet this national need, and Congress should provide additional funding to help this 5 year program meet its potential.”

“Defense manufacturing communities can build upon the track record of what other federally designated communities have learned to overcome complex challenges using proven “collective impact” and “cluster-based” approaches to getting things that matter done”, says Michael Goff President of the Northeast Midwest Institute. “Together these communities form an expanding national network of local, regional, state and national leaders dedicated to achieving sustainability through economic growth, improved environmental performance, and job creation within a revitalized American manufacturing base.”

Federally designated manufacturing communities using this approach focus on key areas shown to be critical in building a robust manufacturing ecosystem of support such as workforce and training, and supply chain support.

Visit OEA.org for more details.

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