January 17, 2018

Malloy: CT's mfg. stakes yielding dividends

DECD Commissioner Catherine Smith.
PHOTO | Contributed
ACMT's Levon Gonzalez, a mobile lab trainee, works at her Manchester plant.

Connecticut has since 2014 pumped more than $43.7 million into nearly 900 manufacturers to speed their growth in investment, sales, and -- ultimately -- hiring and talent development, state officials say.

Gov. Dannel P. Malloy and Department of Economic and Community Development (DECD) Commissioner Catherine Smith said this is the latest measurable impact of the state's four-year-old Manufacturing Innovation Fund (MIF). The MIF annual report was released Wednesday.

The MIF supports the growth, innovation, and progress of Connecticut's advanced manufacturing sector, Malloy and Smith said. Managed by an advisory board of statewide manufacturing leaders, MIF focuses on distressed communities, including Hartford, Bridgeport, Waterbury and New London, with 47 percent of manufacturers residing within 37 designated communities.

"The results of the Manufacturing Innovation Fund report released today show that our smart, targeted investments in advanced manufacturing are paying off," Malloy said. "Advanced manufacturing is and will remain a critical part of Connecticut's economy and way of life for years to come."

Smith said MIF is "a direct response to the needs of Connecticut's expanding manufacturing sector that is slated to create thousands of jobs over the next decade."

In 2017 alone, over 4,500 full-time employees completed training that resulted in upgraded skills and increased productivity, the MIF report said.

Malloy and Smith unveiled the latest MIF annual report at the Manchester headquarters of aeroparts maker ACMT.

"ACMT's growth in recent years is tied directly to the support we have received from the state of Connecticut and the Manufacturing Innovation Fund," ACMT Founder-President Michael Polo said in a statement. "The voucher and incumbent worker training programs have helped us purchase and develop cutting-edge equipment and provide our workers with the best training out there. We are a stronger worldwide competitive company as a result."

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