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President Obama’s Recess Appointments to the NLRB Ruled Unconstitutional

This morning, the the D.C. Circuit Court of .Appeals ruled that the three recess appointments to the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) made by President Obama a year ago are unconstitutional. 

The NLRB’s activist and aggressive actions in recent years have raised significant concerns, including challenges to the constitutionality of the Board’s composition. Today’s ruling gives strong  

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Manufacturing In New York Area Shrinks For A Fifth Straight Month In December – Global Slowdown, Not Sandy Key Factor

Manufacturing activity in New York contracted for the fifth month in a row in December, according to the Empire State Manufacturing Survey. The decline, however, could not be attributed to superstorm Sandy as New York manufacturers said the storm’s effect on business has mostly dissipated.

The monthly report of manufacturing activity compiled by the Federal  

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2013 – Challenges Abound For Hudson Valley Manufactures

In 2012 “uncertainty” was the word that best described manufacturers’ thoughts on the economy.  Throughout the year we it seemed we were always waiting for one thing or another; the election results, action on tax and spending cuts, for a solution to the Euro crisis or for action by the Federal Reserve of the European Central Bank.

The  

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Sequestration Already Proving Disastrous for Small Manufacturers in the Defense Supply Chain

Much has been made of the “fiscal cliff” that looms at the end of the year and its effect on small business across the nation.  The tax increases set to take effect will certainly have a negative impact on small manufacturers, many of which file as sub Chapter “S” corporations.

As this  

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Less Optimistic

The New York Federal Reserve’s Empire State Manufacturing Report for September was a real downer.

Factory executives in the New York Fed’s district were less optimistic about the future. The gauge measuring the outlook six months from now fell to 19.4 from 27.2.

The October Empire State Manufacturing Survey indicates that conditions for New York manufacturers  

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NAM Video to Help Manufacturers Impact Election

Americans head to the polls in 35 days. The decisions we make will shape our economic future—not just for the next few years, but for generations to come. Our economy is at stake. America is at stake.

President Obama and Gov. Romney square off in the first presidential debate tomorrow and manufacturers will be watching with much anticipation. While neither candidate wants America to fail or be  

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NAM/NFIB Survey: Businesses, Manufacturers Say They Are Worse Off Than Three Years Ago

On behalf of the National Federation of Independent Businesses and the National Association of Manufacturers, Public Opinion Strategies conducted a survey of 800 small business owners and manufacturers, owners, or C-level decision makers at companies with between 2 and 499 employees.   

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Business Council of Westchester Study: Closing Indian Point $11.5 Billion Negative Impact

Long Before the 2011 earthquake and tsunami and the resulting disaster at the Fukashima plant in japan, nuclear energy had lots of opposition. Growing up in the 1970s in a college “No Nukes” was almost as common a protest chant as “Make Love, Not War.”

The Fukashima disaster has, however, prompted a renewed interest in the safety of nuclear energy, and provided ammunition  

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“Additive” Manufacturing Catching On

Industrial 3-D printing is catching on as the technology advances and costs drop.  This article in IndustryWeek talks about some f the milestones the technology has achieved in its 25 year history and how it is likely to reshape manufacturing in the future.

You may want to revisit our post discussing The Economist article on the coming “Third Industrial Revolution” as well.

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Creativity. Innovation. Technology…..Artscience

Collaboration between the arts and sciences has the potential to create new knowledge, ideas and processes beneficial to both fields. Artists and scientists approach creativity, exploration and research in different ways and from different perspectives; when working together they open up new ways of seeing, experiencing and interpreting the world around us.

In this video, Allison Carruth of UCLA  

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One Ford Plan is All About Flexibility and Capacity

Ford Motor Company is taking another cue from its Japanese competitors with its OneFord plan.  By building vehicles the same way in every plant around the world, Ford expects to reduce its manufacturing investment costs by 8% a year while boosting by 25% the number and types of vehicles that can be produced per facility by mid-decade.

Ford wants to be selling 8 million vehicles a year  

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The “Pass Through Entity” One Big Reason For Comprehensive Tax Reform

“Alice: Would you tell me, please, which way I ought to go from here?
The Cheshire Cat: That depends a good deal on where you want to get to.
Alice: I don’t much care where.
The Cheshire Cat: Then it doesn’t much matter which way you go.”

― Lewis Carroll, Alice in Wonderland

Alice would be pleased with Congress this week as it did its typical dance of passing one house  

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Highlights of the June Empire State Manufacturing Survey

The July Empire State Manufacturing Survey indicates that manufacturing activity expanded modestly over the month.

Survey Highlights

  • The general business conditions index rose five points to 7.4.
  • New orders declined, as that index slipped into negative territory for the first time since November 2011, falling five points to -2.7.
  • The shipments index increased five points
  

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Toll Hike Leaves New York Anything but “Open for Business”

Twenty business groups, including the Council of Industry, have joined together to oppose the New York State Thruway Authority’s proposed 45% toll increase on commercial vehicles. The groups represent over 13,000 companies of all sizes, ranging from farms and grocery stores, to fuel suppliers, lumber mills and manufacturers, who expect to see a significant negative impact on their business  

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Affordable Care Act – Why Small Business Wants It Gone

The short answer to this question is this: “Because they took a complicated, inefficient and expensive system for financing and delivering health care and made it more complicated, less efficient and more expensive.”

Here’s the longer answer.

For at least 40 years members of the Council of Industry have been frustrated by the health care system.  In the early 1970s we were so frustrated  

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NY Times Reports OEM Growth

Reporting on a trend that we ourselves have noted over the past year the New York Times is reporting today that “Small businesses that make machines and components for other manufacturers are experiencing an upswing that could be a sign of things to come for the broader economy.”

The article notes that industries which are growing (medical device manufacturers and oil & natural gas  

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At NAM Manufacturing Summit and Fly In

We are at the NAM Manufacturing Summit and will soon begin our visits to legislators “On The Hill.”  Our first meetings today are with Senators Gillibrand and Schumer.  Tomorrow we meet with Congressman Gibson and Congresswoman Hayworth.

The message we are delivering is to give manufacturing the tools and resources it needs to grow, and that a growing American manufacturing sector  

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Kudos to Orange County IDA for Pushing Manufacturing Worker Skills Development

For more than a year members of the Orange County (NY) Industrial Development Agency Board of Directors have been researching ways to support Orange County Small and Medium sized manufacturers in their efforts to find skilled workers.  The IDA recognizes the importance of manufacturing to the economy of the county and are trying to support it where they can.

Since first learning that a gap  

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Empire State Manufacturing Survey for April: Modest Growth, Difficulty Finding Workers with Math and Computer Skills

The New York Federal Reserve Bank’s April Empire State Manufacturing Survey indicates that manufacturing activity in New York State improved modestly. Although the general business conditions index fell fourteen points, it remained positive at 6.6.  Some Other Findings:

  • The new orders and shipments indexes also remained positive, but showed only a small
  

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Federal Worker Training – 49 Programs Limited Success

To our mind there are 2 main areas of workforce development, basic and custom.  By basic we mean the fundamental skills to succeed in any work setting, functional math, simple teamwork, proficient reading and writing.  This area would seem to us to be the purview of the educational system and for those not intending to, or capable of, heading on to post secondary education it would also include  

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