NOTE: Please see below for the schedule
OMAHA – On Thursday, October 1st, Governor Pete Ricketts will travel to CLAAS in Omaha and MetalQuest in Hebron to highlight Manufacturing Month in Nebraska. He will be joined by Bryan Slone, President of the Nebraska Chamber of Commerce and Industry, and Tony Goins, Director of the Nebraska Department of Economic Development (DED).
“Manufacturers in our state support about 100,000 great-paying jobs. They grow Nebraska through their ingenuity and innovation,” said Gov. Ricketts. “Our manufacturers are developing products to deliver coronavirus vaccines and creating the next generation of high-tech agricultural machinery to help feed the world. In October, we recognize their contributions to our state and celebrate their inventiveness.”
Manufacturing is one of Nebraska’s most important industries, contributing over $14 billion to the state’s Gross Domestic Product annually. The Nebraska Chamber and the Nebraska Manufacturing Advisory Council (NeMAC)—led by the Nebraska Department of Economic Development, Department of Education, and the Department of Labor, in partnership with the private sector—champion the growth of manufacturing in the state. Together, these organizations give voice to the opportunities and challenges surrounding the industry, such as automation and workforce availability.
“Nebraska’s manufacturing sector is a vital economic engine for Nebraska,” said Nebraska Chamber President Bryan Slone. “Even during the many challenges of the pandemic, our manufacturers kept the lights on, their employees safe, and the economy moving in order to meet our nation’s critical needs. Manufacturing in Nebraska continues to provide thousands of high-tech and high-paying jobs and will provide important career opportunities for the next generation of Nebraskans carving out their own ‘Good Life’ right here at home.”
“This month is a chance to show our appreciation for the incredible manufacturing firms that are here creating economic opportunities for our citizens and families,” said DED Director Anthony L. Goins. “It’s also about reaffirming our goal to grow our state’s manufacturing sector by attracting and retaining workforce talent; recruiting high-tech, high-wage job creators; and cultivating a business climate conducive to success.”
According to a study by The Manufacturing Institute and Deloitte, manufacturers expect to fill 4.6 million jobs in the United States between 2018 and 2028. This creates a host of opportunities for Americans looking for lucrative jobs where they can design, create, and build.
Throughout his administration, Gov. Ricketts has made it a priority to equip Nebraskans to excel in manufacturing careers. In 2015, he launched the Developing Youth Talent Initiative to give middle school students awareness of manufacturing careers and hands-on learning opportunities to build and create. The Governor has also been a big advocate of Registered Apprenticeships (RAs) during his time in office. Youth RAs allow high school students to gain job experience in the workplace while earning college credits. For college students, RAs offer the opportunity to earn while learning. Apprentices gain workplace skills and earn income, while simultaneously advancing toward a degree. Most recently, the Governor worked with the Legislature to invest in Nebraska Career Scholarships for students studying to enter great-paying careers in industries with a shortage of qualified workers, such as manufacturing.
The Governor, Chamber President Bryan Slone, and DED Director Tony Goins will kick off Manufacturing Month with a press conference at CLAAS on Thursday morning. They will also host a brief media availability at MetalQuest in Hebron later in the day. On a limited basis, both press events are open to credentialed media at the times and locations indicated below. Outlets are limited to ONE representative each. There will not be an opportunity for media tours of the facilities.
Thursday, October 1
9:00 AM CT Press Conference, CLAAS, 8401 132nd St., OMAHA
1:00 PM CT Media Availability, MetalQuest, 1410 Dove Rd., HEBRON
Nota Bene: These events are open to credentialed media on a limited basis.
By Bryan Slone, President, NE Chamber
As Nebraska plans for our post-COVID recovery, it’s urgent that we unite behind a pro-growth vision and seize a unique generational opportunity to leverage the quality-of-life advantages of our state. The pandemic has fundamentally changed the dynamics of how people view where they live and work. In these challenging times, there is no better place to come together and come home to than our Nebraska communities, from Omaha to Scottsbluff.
Our pro-growth agenda must transcend politics and geographies. Whether urban or rural, conservative or progressive, public or private, we all share a common interest at this critical point. Indeed, whether we focus on maintaining leadership in healthcare, education, our key industries, technology, or infrastructure, our efforts are likely interlinked. All require the kind of economic and population growth necessary to create the economic base and environment to accomplish these goals.
Being pro-growth in this way will require deliberately going on offense as a state. It will require working together in new ways and embracing new policies, public-private partnerships and funding models. It will require a consistent, multiyear commitment by community, business, charitable and public sector leaders to build communities and modern public services and amenities that successfully attract new businesses and new residents to Nebraska (particularly 18- to 34-year-olds).
Pursuing a pro-growth mentality means, not only doing new things, but continuing to support and grow our high-impact industries. It means removing barriers to progress. Depending on your passion, that can mean relieving tax burdens, connecting and upskilling workers, expanding broadband, addressing prison overcrowding, and delivering workforce solutions that move Nebraskans out of poverty.
Fortunately, Nebraska has a pro-growth plan in the Blueprint Nebraska report (blueprint-nebraska.org), its 15 growth initiatives and its related benchmarks for measuring success. This report reflects the input of literally thousands of people statewide and transcends politics and geography.
We were proud to be a partner in the development of the Blueprint Nebraska report, and we are committed to working as a partner with many communities and organizations in the execution of its plan. Blueprint Nebraska calls us to: