Tag: 3.21.19

As Governor Cuomo and the Legislature Continue Budget Negotiations – Issues Critical to Manufacturers are in Play

Post: Mar. 22, 2019

Gov. Andrew Cuomo told reporters earlier this week that this year’s state budget negotiations are particularly difficult because of revenue declines, the threat of big federal funding cuts and disputes with lawmakers over spending priorities.  Cuomo said there’s still time to agree on a budget before the April 1 deadline but that this budget may prove to be more difficult than past spending plans.

Here is a brief update on some items being discussed of particular interest to manufacturers include:

  • A provision legalizing and taxing marijuana was dropped after lawmakers couldn’t agree on the details. Cuomo now says it could be taken up after the budget.
  • Cuomo says he won’t sign a budget that doesn’t make the 2 percent local property tax cap
  • The New York State Senate included $750,000 in its one-house budget to sustain the New York State Manufacturing Intermediary Apprenticeship Program (NYSMIAP), an employer-led, public-private pilot program for registered apprentices in manufacturing occupations. The Council of Industry administers the program in the Hudson Valley.
  • A provision to “zero out” the income tax for New York State Manufacturers organized as “pass-through entities is still a possibility as negotiations continue.
  • Both houses of the legislature have backed a provision in the budget calling for prevailing wages to be paid for all projects in the state that receive any state funding. Such a provision would mean dramatic increases in the cost of projects from hospitals to schools to any private project that received economic development assistance. 

Many of these issues were discussed at the Manufacturing Alliance Lobby Day March 6th where more than 50 manufactures from across the state visited with legislators to voice their hopes and concerns.

Council of Industry President Harold King introduced Lt. Governor Kathy Hochul who keynoted the day’s luncheon.  The Lt. Governor has a long history of support for manufacturing especially in the area of workforce development and she is also the Chair Person of the State’s Regional Economic Development Councils. She spoke on the importance of investing in the next generation of manufacturing workers and of the need to continue to support the sector.


I-9 Audits Are on the Rise

Post: Mar. 21, 2019

From RBT CPAs, Council of Industry Associate Member

Audits of I-9 records quadrupled in 2018 over the prior year (the federal fiscal year). That means nearly 6,000 employers were audited, which led to several dozen civil and criminal convictions. The agency involved — Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) — “is carrying out its commitment to increase the number of I-9 audits in an effort to create a culture of compliance among employers,” it stated upon releasing audit statistics. To accommodate the increase, HSI is beefing up its army of auditors. 

Most employers don’t intentionally falsify I-9 forms or knowingly accept falsified ones from employees. They simply make honest mistakes. And that’s what lets them get by with only a civil conviction instead of a criminal one. But, as the saying goes, ignorance of the law is no excuse. A civil offense conviction and its associated penalties still costs money and generates bad publicity. How can you avoid slipping up? With a quick review of basic I-9 employment eligibility verification requirements and common errors

Read more

Also see Find Out About IMAGE – ICE Mutual Agreement between Government Employers

Compressed Air Systems and COMAIRCO’s Compressed Air Challenge


Read about ways to save money by reducing or eliminating unnecessary use of compressed air from the University of Minnesota’s Technical Assistance Program 

Approximately 70% of all manufacturers have a compressed air system. These systems power a variety of equipment, including machine tools, material handling and separation equipment, and spray painting equipment. Compressed air is one of the most expensive uses of energy in a manufacturing plant. About 8hp of electrical power is used to generate the electricity required for 1hp of compressed air, making it the least efficient and sustainable plant utility.  While there are applications that require the use of compressed air, many uses of compressed air can be eliminated to save money. Calculating the cost of compressed air in your facility can help you justify system improvements that increase energy efficiency. This page offers tips for increasing your compressed air system’s efficiency and decreasing costs.

Read More

Find out about COMAIRCO’s Compressed Air Challenge Seminar 

Learn about Energy Efficiency in Compressed Air Systems 

When: June 4th from 7:30 am – 5 pm at The Crown Plaza in Suffern, NY 
Speaker: David Booth, Fundamentals of Compressed Air Systems
Cost: $295 per person, includes continental, breakfast, lunch, breaks and materials
Click here for agenda and registration


Find Out About IMAGE – ICE Mutual Agreement between Government and Employers

Post: Mar. 20, 2019

For many companies around the country, building a successful business starts with hiring a capable workforce.

It can be a tedious process. One that begins with the recruitment of qualified candidates and continues with the subsequent steps of taking those potential employees through the hiring process, all while ensuring that all documentation is in compliance with the law.

As part of the hiring process, companies must conduct regular self-assessments to uncover flaws that could be exploited by unauthorized workers who create vulnerabilities in today’s marketplace by presenting false documents to gain employment, completing applications for fraudulent benefits and stealing identities of legal United States workers.

U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s (ICE) Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) conducts outreach through the ICE Mutual Agreement between Government and Employers, or IMAGE program, to instill a culture of compliance and accountability.

Read more https://www.ice.gov/features/image 

The 2019 Manufacturing Champions to be Honored at Awards Breakfast on May 17


The Council of Industry will hold it’s annual Manufacturing Champion Awards Breakfast on Friday, May 17th at the Powelton Club to honor this year’s winners. The Manufacturing Champion Awards recognize individuals and organizations who have worked to strengthen and build the manufacturing sector in the Hudson Valley community. These individuals and organization have through vision, dedication, and hard work helped to overcome some of the many obstacles faced by manufacturers in the Hudson Valley community and in so doing they have made it possible for manufacturers and their employees to prosper. This year’s Champions are:

Private Sector Champion: Robb Engle, Vice President Engineering, Sono-Tek Corporation

A longtime employee and leader at Sono-Tek Corporation, Robb has recently been at the forefront of implanting an automated, software driven system that autonomously creates and prioritizes work orders for every work station on the manufacturing floor. This system has increased the accuracy and efficiency of every work center by 10-20% and eliminated 10 -20 hours per week of work order processing and another 20 -40 hours per week of sales order product analysis. In addition, Robb has spent many years volunteering his time at SUNY New Paltz, Marlboro, and other local High schools and with the Hudson Valley Pathways Academy. Rob has been a mentor to the next generation workforce and helped guide many students on their path towards STEM careers.


Public Sector Champion: Meghan Taylor, Director Mid-Hudson Region, Empire State Development Corporation

A Hudson Valley native Meghan has been responsible for guiding and managing ESD’s Mid-Hudson Regional Office and Regional Economic Development Council (REDC) initiative within the seven County Region. The Mid-Hudson Regional Office works hand-in-hand with new and existing businesses to help identify program funding to support business growth and expansion. Meghan has paid particular attention to the Region’s manufacturers ensuring that advanced manufacturing is a priority industry for the REDC and working to bring resources to bear to assist their growth and expansion. Under her leadership, the Mid-Hudson Economic Development Council has secured over $258 million to fund 327 projects. In addition to the success the region has had through the CFA Process, she has also been instrumental in attracting and retaining many companies in the region outside of that process.


Organization Champion: Workforce Development Institute (WDI)

The Workforce Development Institute (WDI) is a statewide non-profit organization that works to grow and keep good jobs in NYS. They use a range of tools — including ground level information, workforce expertise, and funding — to facilitate projects that build skills and strengthen employers’ ability to hire and promote workers. This often fills gaps not covered by other organizations and is accomplished through partnerships and collaborations with businesses, unions, other non-profits, educational institutions, and government. Manufacturing companies are retooling/retrenching and making investments in product innovation, equipment, facilities, and the workforce. WDI believes a healthy manufacturing base is a key driver to grow the of the rest of the economy.


Education Sector Individual Champion: Bryan Van Vliet, Saugerties High School Technology Teacher

Bryan has developed programs for his technology students at Saugerties High School that are not only interesting and educational but prepare them for the future workforce. He has arranged plant tours at local manufacturing facilities so students can see the practical application of their education. He includes a diverse set of projects that vary from gardening to 3D printing to writing computer programs to control a trackless train.

You are invited to celebrate the winners at the Manufacturing Champion Awards Breakfast on Friday, May 17th, from 7:30 – 9:30 am at the Powelton Club in Newburgh. Seats are $35 a person or $325 for a table of ten. Register to attend.

Please consider becoming a sponsor or placing an ad in the event program. For more information click here. Sponsors make this event possible and we would like to thank the following:

Supporting Sponsors: