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Congressman Brad Sherman

Representing the 30th District of CALIFORNIA

Keeping American Manufacturing Strong


Apr 18, 2006

The San Fernando Valley is home to thriving manufacturing companies that have boosted productivity, spurred increased sales, and maintained quality jobs by teaming with an innovative federal partnership program.

The Manufacturing Extension Partnership assists small manufactures that employ more than 11 million American workers nationwide.  These companies have contributed to an economic upswing that has helped increase productivity and job growth.  In California alone, more than 92,000 small and mid-sized manufacturers provide 14 percent of our states employment and 21 percent of Californias wages.

These manufacturing jobs are highly skilled, and the workers earn up to half again what retail employees make.

The Manufacturing Extension Partnership is a nationwide network that provides small and medium-sized manufacturers with the services they need to succeed.  Linked through the Commerce Department's National Institute of Standards and Technology, the network is funded by federal, state, local and private resources.

Many businesses that do not have specialists such as Industrial Engineers, Manufacturing Engineers and Quality Engineers on staff to help them keep up with technology and new ideas can benefit from this program.  Through the network, even the smallest firms are able to tap knowledgeable experts in manufacturing and business from all over the United States.

The program has a proven track record.  Clients have achieved productivity gains up to four times greater than comparable firms that do not participate.  The companies have increased sales, hired more workers, and invested in plant modernization. 

Last year alone, small manufacturers that participated in the program reported 43,624 new or retained jobs, saw sales of more than $4.5 billion and invested $941 million in new plants and equipment.

In Southern California, the non-profit California Manufacturing Technology Consulting assists small manufacturers and suppliers, including many that serve the aerospace and defense industries. CMTC offers assistance to manufacturers who need help in reducing costs, boosting sales and retaining employees.

Some local companies that have benefited from the program include L-3 Communications in Sylmar, Industrial Metal Supply Co. in Burbank, Optimal Communications Products Inc. in Woodland Hills, Sierracin/Sylmar Corp. in Sylmar, and United Aeronautical Corporation in North Hollywood. 

It is a program that works.  It is a program that boosts the economy and creates jobs here in the Valley and around the country.  For more information on this important program, go to the California Manufacturing Technology web site at