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Daily news and top headlines for manufacturing professionals

CA Formally Opens Large Solar Plant

February 9, 2015 6:23 am | by The Associated Press | News | Comments

California is rushing to expand its use of solar power to meet the renewable energy requirements, and one of the nation's largest solar projects will be dedicated Monday in the Riverside County desert. U.S. Interior Secretary Sally Jewell is scheduled to join federal and local officials to...

Why Should Manufacturers Care About Net Neutrality?

February 6, 2015 5:43 pm | by Bridget Bergin, Associate Editor | Blogs | Comments

Earlier this week, FCC chairman Tom Wheeler proposed redefining broadband internet as a telecommunications service rather than an information service. While this change seems like an issue of semantics, it has massive implications for individual internet users, broadband internet service providers, and businesses of all...

Obama To Tout Community College Plan At IN Town Hall

February 6, 2015 2:34 pm | by Jeni O'Malley, The Associated Press | News | Comments

President Barack Obama's proposal to make two years of community college free will get a key test Friday as he travels to Indiana, a red state where making college more affordable and increasing graduation rates are squarely in the spotlight. Obama's plan is part of a proposed budget that increases taxes on the wealthy and aims to...

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Fracking Puts CA Governor, Environmentalists At Odds

February 6, 2015 2:24 pm | by Juliet Williams, The Associated Press | News | Comments

In the 1970s, the environmental movement had no bigger political hero than California Gov. Jerry Brown. He cracked down on polluters, ended tax breaks for oil companies and promoted solar energy. Forty years later, in his second go-around as governor, conservationists are among his harshest...

FCC’s Net Neutrality Proposal Keeps Internet Open For Businesses

February 6, 2015 10:21 am | by Jon Minnick, Associate Editor, Manufacturing Business Technology | Blogs | Comments

Later this month, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) will vote on a proposal to reclassify the Internet as a utility and critical to the functioning of the nation, in turn, maintaining “net neutrality.” So what does that all mean? The proposal by FCC Chairman, Tom Wheeler, means that Internet providers must allow data to...

Obama Budget Includes Extra Funding For OSHA

February 6, 2015 9:48 am | by Andy Szal, Real Time Digital Reporter, Manufacturing.net | News | Comments

President Obama's fiscal year 2016 budget proposal includes a $1.3 billion funding increase for the Labor Department — including millions to bolster the department's regulatory oversight agencies. Of the department's proposed $13.2 billion funding level, $1.9 billion would be allocated to worker protection agencies such as the...

McCain Seeks To Open U.S. Domestic Routes To Foreign Ships

February 6, 2015 3:26 am | by Kevin Freking, The Associated Press | News | Comments

Sen. John McCain, who seems to revel in the occasional lonely crusade, is now taking on America's maritime industry and the longstanding law barring foreign-built ships from transporting goods within the United States. McCain's opposition to the 1920 Jones Act isn't new, but his status as...

FDA Head To Step Down, Chief Scientist Taking Over

February 5, 2015 12:58 pm | by Matthew Perrone, Mary Clare Jalonick, The Associated Press | News | Comments

From food safety to tobacco and politically charged drug approvals, Margaret Hamburg reset the course of the embattled Food and Drug Administration, an agency that had often been seen as ineffective. After nearly six years on the job, Hamburg announced her resignation Thursday in an email to staff. She said the agency's chief...

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FCC Chairman Proposes Regulating Internet Like Phone Service

February 4, 2015 3:19 pm | by Anne Flaherty, The Associated Press | News | Comments

Declaring that the Internet must not be taken over by big business interests, a top U.S. regulator on Wednesday proposed dramatically expanding the government's power to oversee Internet service providers and establishing new rules that would prohibit companies from blocking or slowing data. Federal Communications Commission Chairman...

Energy Consumption By U.S. Government At Lowest Level Since 1975

February 4, 2015 3:07 pm | by U.S. Energy Information Administration‎ | News | Comments

The U.S. federal government, with thousands of facilities and vehicles in locations across the United States and abroad, is one of the largest energy consumers in the world, but that consumption is declining. The U.S. Department of Energy's Federal Energy Management Program (FEMP) shows total delivered-to-site energy use by the...

White House Budget Would Boost Labor Regulators

February 4, 2015 2:28 pm | by Andy Szal, Real Time Digital Reporter, Manufacturing.net | News | Comments

President Obama's fiscal year 2016 budget proposal includes a $1.3 billion funding increase for the Labor Department -- including millions to bolster the department's regulatory oversight agencies. Of the department's proposed $13.2 billion funding level, $1.9 billion would be allocated to worker protection agencies such as the...

Obama Plan Would Merge 6 U.S. Trade, Development Agencies

February 4, 2015 2:21 pm | by Ronnie Greene, The Associated Press | News | Comments

A little-noticed proposal in President Barack Obama's $4 trillion budget would eliminate the Overseas Private Investment Corporation, which has been the subject of an Associated Press investigation into its overseas loans, and merge it for efficiency with five other federal business and trade...

New Rule Allows Idaho Dairies To Dump Waste Without Losing Permits

February 4, 2015 10:41 am | by Kimberlee Kruesi, The Associated Press | News | Comments

Companies that are part of Idaho's $2.4 billion dairy industry are no longer at risk of losing their operating permits if caught illegally dumping waste into streams and waterways. The Senate Agricultural Affairs Committee approved new rules Tuesday that would no longer allow the Idaho State Department of Agriculture to revoke...

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China, Argentina Team Up To Discuss Upcoming Energy Projects

February 4, 2015 10:32 am | by Bridget Bergin, Associate Editor | News | Comments

A global partnership between Argentina and China was strengthened today as leaders from both countries agreed to collaborate on two new nuclear power plants. President Christina Fernandez de Kirchner of Argentina and President Xi Jinping of China signed the nuclear power plant agreement and fourteen other agreements...

White House Budget Would Fund Additional Manufacturing Hubs

February 3, 2015 5:15 pm | by Andy Szal, Real Time Digital Reporter, Manufacturing.net | News | Comments

The Obama administration's budget proposal unveiled this week calls for seven new national manufacturing innovation hubs, along with funding to build toward a national network of 45 such sites. Much of the president's budget is considered dead on arrival in the Republican-controlled Congress, and GOP lawmakers who've complained about...

Health, Industry Groups Spar Over Ozone Rule

February 3, 2015 5:11 pm | by Andy Szal, Real Time Digital Reporter, Manufacturing.net | News | Comments

Health advocates and environmental groups are urging federal officials to adopt stricter limits on ozone, while an industry group argued taking that step would needlessly hamper manufacturing. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has proposed reducing the threshold for ground-level ozone, or smog, from the current 75 parts per...

State Department Won't Intervene In Nissan-UAW Dispute

February 3, 2015 2:57 pm | by Andy Szal, Real Time Digital Reporter, Manufacturing.net | News | Comments

The dispute between Nissan Motor Company and the United Auto Workers union over organizing workers at a Mississippi auto plant will continue without intervention from the federal government. The UAW, which has sought to unionize Nissan's Canton, Mississippi plant for more than a decade, last spring asked the...

Obama's Budget Includes Billions For Coal States

February 3, 2015 12:01 pm | by Adam Beam, The Associated Press | News | Comments

President Barack Obama's new budget proposal includes more than $3 billion worth of tax credits and other spending to help the Appalachian region recover from the job losses and economic impact of the declining coal industry. But the new Republican-controlled Congress appeared skeptical of the...

NAM: Punitive Budget Will Hurt The Economy

February 3, 2015 10:37 am | by Jamie Hennigan, National Association of Manufacturers | Articles | Comments

National Association of Manufacturers (NAM) President and CEO Jay Timmons released this statement on President Obama’s proposed budget for fiscal year 2016: “If the President is serious about helping manufacturers sustain their resurgence in the United States, this outrageous budget proposal is a bad place to...

Q&A: Food Facilities And FDA Registration

February 3, 2015 10:16 am | by Jesse Osborne, Editor, Food Manufacturing | Articles | Comments

Last month, food companies around the world found that the U.S. Food and Drug Administration is in the process of removing all food facilities that did not renew their FDA registration by the Dec. 31, 2014 deadline from its registration database.According to Registrar Corp, the Food Safety Modernization Act requires...

Obama Proposes $3.99 Trillion Budget For 2016

February 3, 2015 10:02 am | by Maura Falk, Associate Editor, Industrial Maintenance & Plant Operations | Videos | Comments

President Obama has unveiled his new budget proposal — all $3.99 trillion of it. According to the President, the goal of the new budget is to be “practical, not partisan” in order to provide a boost to middle class families and to improve the nation’s infrastructure. Under the President’s new proposal existing spending caps would...

State Drilling Panel Weighs Disclosure Of Fracking Chemicals

February 2, 2015 7:24 pm | by Dan Elliott, The Associated Press | News | Comments

Gov. John Hickenlooper's task force on oil and gas discussed proposals Monday that would force energy companies to disclose all the chemicals they use in hydraulic fracturing and give local governments more of a say on where wells can be drilled. The task force is winnowing down a list of 56...

New Rules May Answer Question: Whose Internet Is It?

February 2, 2015 2:21 pm | by Anne Flaherty, The Associated Press | News | Comments

Whose Internet is it anyway? Tom Wheeler, chairman of the Federal Communications Commission, says he's keeping that question in mind as he pitches the biggest regulatory shake-up to the telecommunications industry since 1996, when people still used noisy modems and referred to the...

PPL Montana Shutting Down J.E. Corette Coal-Fired Power Plant

February 2, 2015 12:24 pm | by Tom Lutey, The Billings Gazette, The Associated Press | News | Comments

It isn't on its dying breath, but the J.E. Corette coal-fired power plant, for 40 years Billings' worst air polluter, could be weeks away from its last gasp. In 73 days, the final chunks of Wyoming coal will drop into Corette's furnace, and when those final embers fade, the 46-year-old power...

Obama Proposes New Food Safety Agency

February 2, 2015 12:09 pm | by Mary Clare Jalonick, The Associated Press | News | Comments

President Barack Obama wants to create a new government agency dedicated to keeping the nation's food safe. The proposal in the president's budget released Monday comes after outbreaks of illnesses linked to chicken, eggs, peanuts and cantaloupe in recent years. More than a dozen federal agencies oversee food safety, and...

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