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Daily news and top headlines for manufacturing professionals

NAM: Coalition Files Lawsuit To Stop NLRB Agenda

January 7, 2015 11:41 am | by Jamie Hennigan, National Association of Manufacturers | News | Comments

On January 5, a coalition representing an array of industry sectors and businesses filed suit in the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia to stop the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) from moving forward with its “ambush elections” rule, which it issued on December 12. The rule changes longstanding labor policy by shortening the time frame...

Californians On Way To State's New Energy Goals

January 6, 2015 7:41 pm | by Ellen Knickmeyer, The Associated Press | News | Comments

Clean-energy programs initiated by Gov. Jerry Brown and governors before him have California already well on its way to meeting his new goals for reducing the use of climate-changing fossil fuels, industry experts and state officials said Tuesday. Pushing programs such as high-speed rail, for...

Manufacturing Snapshot Of The Week: Obama Plans To Veto Keystone XL

January 6, 2015 4:47 pm | by Bridget Bergin, Associate Editor | News | Comments

The snapshot for this week is an image of White House press secretary Josh Earnest speaking during the daily press briefing at the White House in Washington on Tuesday, Jan. 6, 2015. The photo shows Earnest announcing President Obama's plans to veto the Keystone pipeline...

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New Year May Bring More Small Business Help From Washington

January 6, 2015 1:48 pm | by Joyce M. Rosenberg, AP Business Writer | News | Comments

Small business owners may get more help from Washington in 2015. Gridlock in Washington in recent years has stalled tax bills and other legislation aimed at helping small companies, but such proposals are expected to be on the agenda in the Republican-led Congress. Democrats have opposed some proposals...

Record-Breaking CA Governor Toughens Climate Change Goals

January 6, 2015 12:38 pm | by Judy Lin, The Associated Press | News | Comments

As he was sworn in for a record fourth term, Gov. Jerry Brown charted an ambitious new goal on Monday for California in its fight against climate change, challenging the nation's most populous state to increase renewable energy use to 50 percent in the next 15 years. Brown, a Democrat, specifically called...

First Bill In GOP-Run Senate Seeks To Approve Oil Pipeline

January 6, 2015 12:21 pm | by Dina Cappiello, The Associated Press | News | Comments

The Republican-controlled Senate's first piece of legislation will seek to approve the Keystone XL oil pipeline, testing President Barack Obama on a project he's been increasingly critical about, saying it wouldn't have a huge benefit for U.S. consumers. The bipartisan legislation, which is sponsored by 54 Republicans and...

Net Neutrality Debate Explores Roles Of Internet, Government

January 6, 2015 11:48 am | by Bridget Bergin, Associate Editor | Blogs | Comments

Conversations about technological innovations like driverless cars and Google glass are almost always accompanied by a second conversation about how to regulate the innovation appropriately. While the Internet may seem like a well-established technology, the debate over who should have control of content flow is...

GOP-Controlled Congress, Obama Prepare For Climate Showdown

January 6, 2015 10:30 am | by Josh Lederman, The Associated Press | News | Comments

President Barack Obama's determined efforts to combat global warming face their biggest trial yet as Republicans take full control of Congress this week. The Republicans vow to move fast and forcefully to roll back his environmental rules and force his hand on energy development. The first order of business...

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FCC To Vote Next Month On Net Neutrality Rules

January 5, 2015 2:52 pm | by The Associated Press | News | Comments

Federal regulators are expected to vote next month on rules to govern how Internet service providers like AT&T, Verizon and Comcast deal with the flow of content on their high-speed networks. The five-member Federal Communications Commission will consider then a proposal from Chairman Tom Wheeler...

FDA Drug Approvals Reached 18-Year High In 2014

January 5, 2015 1:25 pm | by Matthew Perrone, The Associated Press | News | Comments

The Food and Drug Administration approved 41 first-of-a-kind drugs in 2014, including a record number of medicines for rare diseases, pushing the agency's annual tally of drug approvals to its highest level in 18 years. FDA drug approvals are considered a barometer of industry innovation and the federal...

Should The 2015 USDA Dietary Guidelines Include An Environmental Agenda?

January 5, 2015 12:13 pm | by Bridget Bergin, Associate Editor | Blogs | Comments

As 2015 hits, it is officially time for a new edition of the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s report Dietary Guidelines for Americans. Updated every five years, the guideline provides recommendations for better overall health, including information on food intake, exercise, and reducing the risk of...

Will 2015 See A Boost In The Federal Minimum Wage?

January 2, 2015 4:50 pm | by Bridget Bergin, Associate Editor | Blogs | Comments

Although 2015 has just begun, it has already been a big year for advocates for a higher minimum wage. On Thursday, January 1, President Obama’s executive order to raise the minimum wage in new federal contracts to $10.10 an hour went into effect, benefiting about 200,000...

Program That Backed Solyndra Now Showing Successes

December 30, 2014 10:48 am | by Henry C. Jackson, The Associated Press | News | Comments

At the RV Park he owns in a remote corner of southwestern Kansas, Jan Leonard is seeing the benefits of one of the federal government's most contentious programs. Development is booming in tiny Hugoton, a town of roughly 3,900 people. The town is...

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DNR Plans To Monitor Air Near Ameren Plants

December 30, 2014 10:23 am | by the Associated Press | News | Comments

The Missouri Department of Natural Resources is planning to install air monitors near two power plants that officials say are the largest sources of sulfur dioxide emissions in the state. DNR is working on an agreement with Ameren Missouri to add sulfur...

Signatures Submitted To Fight CA Bag Ban

December 30, 2014 9:40 am | by Judy Lin, The Associated Press | News | Comments

Business groups trying to overturn a new California law that bans single-use plastic bags said Monday that they've collected more than enough signatures to put their referendum on the November 2016 ballot. If the referendum qualifies, the nation's first statewide ban on...

2014 U.S. Economy Began Shaky, Finished Strong

December 29, 2014 10:24 am | by Josh Boak, The Associated Press | News | Comments

The U.S. economy flexed its old muscles in 2014. More than five years removed from the Great Recession, worries had taken hold at the start of the year that perhaps the world's largest economy had slid into a semi-permanent funk. But consumers, businesses and investors, after...

Key Decisions On Drones Likely From Congress

December 29, 2014 10:00 am | by Joan Lowy, The Associated Press | News | Comments

The Obama administration is on the verge of proposing long-awaited rules for commercial drone operations in U.S. skies, but key decisions on how much access to grant drones are likely to come from Congress next year. Federal Aviation Administration officials have said...

NJ Officials Pleading For Mercedes To Stay

December 29, 2014 9:54 am | by Geoff Mulvihill, The Associated Press | News | Comments

German luxury automobile maker Mercedes-Benz hasn't even publicly said it's considering moving its U.S. headquarters out of New Jersey, but some state officials are so concerned about the possibility they're campaigning publicly to try to keep the company and...

Farmers Brace For Labor Shortage Under New Policy

December 29, 2014 9:44 am | by Scott Smith, The Associated Press | News | Comments

Farmers already scrambling to find workers in California — the nation's leading grower of fruits, vegetables and nuts — fear an even greater labor shortage under President Barack Obama's executive action to block some 5 million people from...   

MI's Population Creeping Up As Autos Recover

December 26, 2014 11:35 am | by David N. Goodman, The Associated Press | News | Comments

After years of declining population, industrial Michigan finally seems to be on track toward growth again, the state's demographer says. The U.S. Census reported this month that Michigan's population rose a razor-thin 0.1 percent to 9.91 million in...

WA Minimum Wage To Hit $9.47 Per Hour, Highest In U.S.

December 26, 2014 11:26 am | by The Associated Press | News | Comments

Washington state's minimum wage will rise to the highest in the nation on Jan. 1. The Seattle Times reports that the minimum wage in the state will hit $9.47 an hour then. The minimum wage in neighboring Oregon will rise to $9.25, the second-highest in the...

Lawmakers Promise To Help Strapped Oil-Patch Towns

December 26, 2014 11:21 am | by Matthew Brown, James MacPherson, The Associated Press | News | Comments

Relief could be on the horizon for strapped public services in the Northern Plains' booming oil patch, as elected leaders in Montana and North Dakota move to steer more money into the region during the states' upcoming legislative...  

VA Agriculture Grants Sprout Jobs, Development

December 26, 2014 11:15 am | by Michael Felberbaum, AP Business Writer | News | Comments

A Virginia grant program started in 2012 to support the agriculture and forestry industries is sprouting job growth and economic development across the state, particularly in rural areas. Growing the state's two largest private economic drivers is...

Feds To Study Nuke-Waste Burial In NV

December 24, 2014 9:47 am | by Ken Ritter, The Associated Press | News | Comments

Nevada and the federal Energy Department announced Tuesday they've formalized a panel to study contentious issues including whether radioactive material from a World War II-era plant in Tennessee will be buried at a former nuclear weapons proving ground north of...

Coming Soon To U.S.: Cuba Libre With Cuban Rum

December 23, 2014 2:37 pm | by Jennifer Kay, The Associated Press | News | Comments

U.S. rum aficionados are abuzz over the possibility of mixing a Cuba Libre with authentic Cuban rum, now that they will be able to bring home liquor distilled in the communist nation. Relaxed limits on what licensed U.S. travelers can bring home mean that Americans will be able to enjoy...

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