Thursday, December 6, 2012

Contact: Al Killeffer (704) 336-3438

Washington, DC — On behalf of the U.S. Conference of Mayors (USCM), Charlotte Mayor Anthony Foxx met with Acting U.S. Secretary of Commerce Rebecca Blank and U.S. Secretary of Labor Hilda L. Solis in Washington today to discuss ways the federal government and mayors across the country can work together to boost advanced manufacturing in U.S. cities.  Foxx was recently named chair of the Conference’s newly created Advanced Manufacturing Task Force and is working to develop a set of strategies that all cities can implement to strengthen their advanced manufacturing sectors.
“The meeting held today between Mayor Foxx and Secretaries Blank and Solis is a giant step towards strengthening the relationship between local and federal government, which will help us reach our joint goal to boost job opportunities in growing industries,” said USCM President Philadelphia Mayor Michael Nutter. “Mayor Foxx brings a wealth of experience to the national policy discussion on job creation, and his leadership of our USCM Task Force on Advanced Manufacturing will help us bring more jobs to Main Street.”
“Advanced manufacturing presents a critical opportunity to put Americans back to work in high-paying jobs, and I’m eager to work with federal officials to achieve that goal,” said Mayor Foxx.  “The overwhelming majority of high-tech manufacturing jobs are already located in metro areas, but through the careful coordination of federal, state, and municipal policies, I believe we can create even more.  I’m thankful to Secretaries Blank and Solis for their support of that effort and I look forward to continuing to work with them moving forward.”
“This Administration has been strongly committed to U.S. manufacturing since Day 1, and at the Commerce Department, we are focused on supporting the development of new and innovative manufacturing technologies that help American entrepreneurs build things here and export them to the world,” said Acting Secretary Blank. “Advanced manufacturing in particular will keep America on the cutting edge of global competition. I am glad that Mayor Foxx and the U.S. Conference of Mayors are working as strong partners in our efforts to strengthen advanced manufacturing and help grow our economy.”  
“Expanding the advanced manufacturing sector is one of the best ways for communities to strengthen the middle class and provide opportunities in high-growth, high-wage jobs,” said Secretary Solis. “I look forward to working with Mayor Foxx on strategies our cities can use to leverage federal programs and resources to train and equip American workers for the jobs of the future.”
The Advanced Manufacturing Task Force will formally launch at the U.S. Conference of Mayors winter meeting in January and begin to examine how policies on workforce development, technology transfer, infrastructure, tax reform, access to capital, and zoning can help cities grow their advanced manufacturing sectors.  Siemens AG and the Brookings Institution will both play advisory roles on the task force.  Foxx has pointed to Siemens’ local training partnership with Charlotte’s Central Piedmont Community College as the kind of public-private collaboration and workforce development program that all cities can benefit from.