New bill aims to improve manufacturing industry hiring and training standards

A recently introduced bill is hoping to boost competitiveness in the manufacturing industry. The American Manufacturing Competitiveness Act of 2013 was introduced on Nov. 14 by Sens. Mark Kirk, R-Ill., and Chris Coons, D-Del.. The bipartisan bill will build a national manufacturing strategy, which would expand the quality of high-tech and traditional manufacturers. Sen. Kirk is anticipating the bill will create more jobs in the manufacturing sector.

"The United States is a worldwide leader in manufacturing, and keeping this industry competitive is crucial to maintaining our economic edge in the global marketplace," Kirk said. "Manufacturers in Illinois employ more than half a million workers with quality jobs and account for 13.3 percent of the total state economic output. Our bill will ensure that the United States manufacturing industry remains competitive and creates new high quality jobs for generations to come."

Growing industry
The manufacturing industry employs roughly 12 million people and is growing each month. The National Association of Manufacturers reported that the manufacturing industry hired 19,000 workers during October. Sen. Coons, who is the founder of the Manufacturing Jobs for America initiative, said this bill will help improve the standards that go into hiring and training.

"Manufacturing has enormous power to create jobs and drive America's economic recovery," Coons said. "While many of our global competitors have clear national industrial policies, the U.S. government does not have a coordinated strategy for supporting America's manufacturers. We need a national strategy that looks at skills training, R&D, trade, and the wealth of factors that contribute to our manufacturers' success. This is a common-sense, bipartisan bill that will ensure the federal government is doing everything it can to create the conditions necessary to help America's manufacturers grow and create jobs."

Similar bill
A related piece of legislation was introduced earlier this year by Rep. Dan Lipinski​, D-Ill Lipinski said he is happy that this bipartisan bill is working to improve the manufacturing industry.

"Our Manufacturing Competitiveness Act has always been about bringing all sides together, from both sides of the aisle, as well as the public and private sectors, to develop a set of coordinated policies that will boost American manufacturing and help create good-paying, middle-class jobs here at home," Lipinski said.  "This legislation will help give our manufacturers a fairer shot at competing in the global marketplace and provide American workers with the opportunity to thrive in the 21st century. I thank Sens. Kirk and Coons for their leadership on this bill and their commitment to manufacturing."