Obama signs Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act

PMA, NTMA say bill will help members to fill skills gap openings


Manufacturing leaders hailed the signing of the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (H.R. 803) on July 22 by President Obama. The House had narrowly passed the bill 215-202 with widespread Republican support, while the Senate voted overwhelmingly 95-3 to approve the measure.

Representatives for the Precision Metalforming Association (PMA) and the National Tooling and Machining Association (NTMA) said in a press release the new law would “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 press release stated the bill would:

  • Eliminate outdated programs
  • Provide accountability and data reporting requirements
  • Require implementation of industry or sector partnerships and career pathway strategies
  • 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).

A recent survey of PMA and NTMA members found 75% of association members have job openings in manufacturing plants, and 80% report that they are having challenges recruiting qualified employees.

“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.”

NTMA and PMA sponsor activities to attract students and new workers to manufacturing including NTMA’s National Robotics League and NTMA-U and PMA’s Women in Manufacturing.

“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 whole.”

No comments
The Engineers' Choice Awards highlight some of the best new control, instrumentation and automation products as chosen by...
The System Integrator Giants program lists the top 100 system integrators among companies listed in CFE Media's Global System Integrator Database.
The Engineering Leaders Under 40 program identifies and gives recognition to young engineers who...
This eGuide illustrates solutions, applications and benefits of machine vision systems.
Learn how to increase device reliability in harsh environments and decrease unplanned system downtime.
This eGuide contains a series of articles and videos that considers theoretical and practical; immediate needs and a look into the future.
Choosing controllers: PLCs, PACs, IPCs, DCS? What's best for your application?; Wireless trends; Design, integration; Manufacturing Day; Product Exclusive
Variable speed drives: Smooth, efficient, electrically quite motion control; Process control upgrades; Mobile intelligence; Product finalists: Vote now; Product Exclusives
Machine design tips: Pneumatic or electric; Software upgrades; Ethernet advantages; Additive manufacturing; Engineering Leaders; Product exclusives: PLC, HMI, IO
This article collection contains the 5 most referenced articles on improving the use of PID.
Learn how Industry 4.0 adds supply chain efficiency, optimizes pricing, improves quality, and more.

Find and connect with the most suitable service provider for your unique application. Start searching the Global System Integrator Database Now!

Cyber security cost-efficient for industrial control systems; Extracting full value from operational data; Managing cyber security risks
Drilling for Big Data: Managing the flow of information; Big data drilldown series: Challenge and opportunity; OT to IT: Creating a circle of improvement; Industry loses best workers, again
Pipeline vulnerabilities? Securing hydrocarbon transit; Predictive analytics hit the mainstream; Dirty pipelines decrease flow, production—pig your line; Ensuring pipeline physical and cyber security