PHILADELPHIA — (BUSINESS WIRE) — July 29, 2013 — The renewed national interest in manufacturing has found its Pennsylvania voice in manufacturing caucuses formed earlier this year in both chambers of the General Assembly.
Formed in May 2013 by Representatives John Galloway (D-Bucks) and Eli Evankovich (R Armstrong/Westmoreland), the House Manufacturing Caucus held its first meeting in June and now has 95 members—almost half of the 203 members of the House. Seventeen members are from Southeastern Pennsylvania.
The Senate Manufacturing Caucus, formed by Senators Kim Ward (R-39) and Wayne Fontana (D-42), held its first meeting in May. It currently lists 28 of the state’s 50 senators as members, with six Senators from the region signed on. This reflects the commonwealth’s interest in and commitment to manufacturing in Pennsylvania.
Bill Stockwell, president & CEO of Stockwell Elastomerics in Northeast Philadelphia said, “Both Chambers creating caucuses focused on manufacturing is a significant milestone for Pennsylvania's manufacturing community. It will certainly help to raise the visibility and viability of manufacturing as a keystone of the state’s economy and a source of high-tech jobs and careers.”
In Philadelphia, a broad-based coalition of government, business (including Stockwell), and economic development has been meeting to support the Mayor’s Manufacturing Task Force, which is currently working with IHS Global Insight and others to conduct baseline research on manufacturing in the region. A report is due to Mayor Nutter by September 30, 2013.
Both the House and Senate caucuses are interested in learning about the issues confronting advanced manufacturing companies in order to articulate and support policies that help manufacturers grow their businesses in Pennsylvania.
“Our five-county Southeastern Pennsylvania region is home to some 4,500 manufacturing companies, designing, engineering, and making products that are sold to some of the best companies all over the world,” said Joe Houldin, CEO of the Delaware Valley Industrial Resource Center. “We look forward to working with our elected officials to help create a supportive climate for business growth,” he added.
Caucus members from both chambers expect to visit manufacturing companies during the summer recess and reconvene in the Fall when the assembly is back in session.
DVIRC is a private, non-profit economic development business consulting firm established in 1988 to serve the needs of 4,500 small and mid-sized manufacturers in southeastern Philadelphia. The organization’s primary focus is to grow business value for clients through consulting services, training and education, and executive network groups. Our vision is to establish the region as an internationally recognized leader in manufacturing competitiveness. We believe growing business value improves the standard of living and quality of life for those that live and/or work in the region. A diverse board of directors comprised of executives from the manufacturing, banking, legal and economic development communities govern the DVIRC. Visit DVIRC online at http://www.dvirc.org.