NGA favors St. Louis for new $1.7 billion headquarters

From the St. Louis Business Journal The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency(NGA) on Friday will announce that they favor a 100-acre site in north St. Louis for the agency’s new $1.7 billion western headquarters, according to a person familiar with the matter. A final decision will be made by NGA Director Robert Cardillo in June after a comment period. The choice is a major win for the city of St. Louis, which has made the effort to retain the federal spy agency — and its 3,100 jobs — its No. 1 economic development priority. After another billion-dollar project, the Mississippi riverfront stadium, fell through, the city was also desperate for a catalyst on the north side, which has been in economic distress for decades. The NGA will move from a facility in Soulard in 2021. The city’s primary rival, St. Clair County in Illinois, had offered a 182-acre greenfield site adjacent to Scott Air Force Base,

read more NGA favors St. Louis for new $1.7 billion headquarters

State Senate gives first round passage to fuel tax increase for MoDOT funding

The Missouri State Senate this week took the first step to increasing funding for the state’s roads and bridges, giving preliminary passage to a bill that would increase the state’s fuel tax. Senate Bill 623, sponsored by Sen. Doug Libla  would raise the state’s fuel tax from 17 cents per gallon to 22.9 cents per gallon on January 1st 2017, pending a vote of the people. The tax increase of 5.9 cents per gallon would apply equally to gas and diesel purchases. The bill that finally passed the State Senate after several hours of debate is a far cry from where the bill started this session. Sen. Libla’s original legislation called for the gasoline tax to increase 1.5 cents per gallon and the state tax on diesel to increase 3.5 cents per gallon with no vote of the people. Associated Industries of Missouri and the Missouri Transportation Development Council took a position early on in the process that both gasoline and

read more State Senate gives first round passage to fuel tax increase for MoDOT funding

NAM, business groups sue Labor Department over Union “Persuader” Rule

The Hill reports that in a Wednesday press release, the NAM announced it has filed a lawsuit with the US District Court for the Eastern District of Arkansas against the Labor Department “over the agency’s union ‘persuader rule.’” A “coalition of business groups,” including the Associated Builders and Contractors, the Arkansas State Chamber of Commerce, Associated Industries of Arkansas, the Arkansas Hospitality Association and the Coalition for a Democratic Workplace joined the NAM in challenging the “long-awaited controversial” rule which “forces employers to report any ‘actions, conduct or communications’ undertaken to ‘affect an employee’s decisions regarding his or her representation or collective bargaining rights.’” According to The Hill, “The NAM claims it violates manufacturers’ First Amendment rights and the Fifth Amendment’s due process clause by restricting manufacturers’ ability to educate and inform their workforce.” NAM Vice President and General Counsel Linda Kelly released a statement saying, “This complicated, vague rule fails to give manufacturers fair notice on what actions are considered

read more NAM, business groups sue Labor Department over Union “Persuader” Rule

Animal products manufacturer, AIM member, adding 144 jobs in Bridgeton

From the St. Louis Business Journal Associated Industries of Missouri member Virbac, a manufacturer and distributor of animal health products, plans to invest $37.9 million to expand its Bridgeton facility and create 144 jobs, Gov. Jay Nixon’s office said Tuesday. Virbac, a French firm, will be eligible to receive $5 million through the state’s Missouri Works incentives program, through which companies retain state withholding tax from new jobs, and $400,000 through the Missouri Works Training program, which provides funds to companies for training, if it meets job creation criteria, said Amy Susan, spokeswoman for the Missouri Department of Economic Development. A Virbac spokesman said the company currently employs 236 people in Bridgeton. Of the 144 jobs being added, 54 have already been filled, he said. The spokesman said Virbac plans to employ 326 people in Bridgeton by the end of 2016. Nixon’s office said Virbac offers products in the heartworm, tick and flea, dermatology, antibiotic, endocrinology, senior care, behavior, critical care

read more Animal products manufacturer, AIM member, adding 144 jobs in Bridgeton

State Treasurer Clint Zweifel warns Missourians of unclaimed property scam

Missourians should never pay to search for or claim their unclaimed property From State Treasurer Clint Zweifel’s office State Treasurer Clint Zweifel (ZWY-ful) is warning Missourians of an Unclaimed Property scam utilizing a letter purporting to be from the National Association of Unclaimed Property Administrators (NAUPA) and instructing the recipient to pay a fee in order to receive Unclaimed Property. While it is an existing organization of which Missouri is a member, NAUPA does not directly contact owners of Unclaimed Property, instead leaving that to member states. “Unfortunately we have received word that Missourians are being targeted by this latest scam and I want to make sure that everyone knows—if you have Unclaimed Property in Missouri you can always receive it free of charge by working with my office,” Treasurer Zweifel said. “You will never be required to go through a third party to claim what I protect. If you have questions or need help claiming your Unclaimed Property, please

read more State Treasurer Clint Zweifel warns Missourians of unclaimed property scam

GDP in Q4 revised upward to 1.4%; corporate profits’ drop not seen as recession sign

From NAM’s Manufacturing Economy Daily blog Bloomberg News (3/25, Jamrisko) cited the Commerce Department as announcing Friday that GDP growth in last year’s fourth quarter was upwardly revised to 1.4% from an initial 1% estimate, “supported by stronger household spending on services.” Bloomberg said the tweaked numbers “also showed that corporate profits dropped in 2015 by the most in seven years,” 7.8%, which “illustrates the limits of an economy struggling to gather steam at the start of this year.” The AP (3/25, Crutsinger) noted that although the latest projection exceeded the Commerce Department’s forecast a month ago, it’s “still below” the 2% annualized growth in the third quarter. The AP said the economy’s “new-found strength” was largely derived from “consumer spending on services such as recreation, which helped offset a manufacturing slump caused in part by a global economic slowdown.” The story added that although “profit declines of [the] magnitude” cited in Friday’s data “can raise concerns about a possible

read more GDP in Q4 revised upward to 1.4%; corporate profits’ drop not seen as recession sign

The Impact of 3D Printing on Manufacturing and Intellectual Property

By Samuel Digirolamo, Husch Blackwell LLP 3D printing has rapidly advanced from the prototyping stage to producing finished goods by merely developing an electronic digital blueprint of the product.  This digital blueprint can be created from various software applications as well as through the use of known 3D scanners.  Once the digital blueprint is created, it is electronically transferred to the 3D printer for starting the printing/manufacturing process. Although 3D printing will have a beneficial impact on manufacturing, such as eliminating molds and set up tooling, reducing cycle times, reducing shipping and production costs, reducing warehousing costs and the overall logistic footprint of the manufacturer, it will likewise impact the intellectual property protection associated with the printed products.  While 3D printing allows manufacturers to tailor and customize products for a particular customer and enables mass customization without constantly redesigning and modifying traditional molds and other tooling, it also enables anyone to recreate any existing product by merely scanning the product and

read more The Impact of 3D Printing on Manufacturing and Intellectual Property

St. Louis is NGA’s gateway to the world and the future

This is an op-ed piece co-authored by St. Louis Congressman William Lacy Clay and St. Louis Mayor Francis Slay. It appeared in the St. Louis Post Dispatch on 3-24-16. AIM supports efforts to keep this large employer in St. Louis. The National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency will soon choose where to locate its new western headquarters, a $1.6 billion decision of enormous importance to our national security and the future of the St. Louis region. For the past 72 years, the city of St. Louis has helped NGA meet its mission, and the evidence clearly demonstrates that the city is the best location to help NGA advance its mission for generations to come. NGA’s motto is: “Know the Earth … Show the Way … Understand the World.” As we have embarked on this journey to sustain our great partnership, in many pragmatic ways, St. Louis has adopted NGA’s motto as its own. Much has been said about the benefits that continuing this

read more St. Louis is NGA’s gateway to the world and the future

McConnell tells governors to stop working to comply with Clean Power Plan

From the National Association of Manufacturer’s Manufacturing Economy Daily blog The Hill (3/21, Cama) cites Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) as writing in a letter to the nation’s governors that they should stop efforts to comply with the Obama administration’s climate-change rule for power plants. In the letter, which was sent Monday via the National Governors Association, McConnell said the Supreme Court’s decision to stop the Clean Power Plan “validated his earlier advice for states to ignore the regulation and not try to comply.” McConnell wrote: “This is precisely why I suggested a ‘wait-and-see’ approach with respect to the CPP last year. … Given the Supreme Court’s recent stay of the CPP and the painful lessons of [the mercury and air toxics standards], ‘wait-and-see’ remains the most responsible approach today.”

Manufacturers and businesses mount opposition to Labor Department “Persuader” rule

The New York Times  reports that on Wednesday, the Labor Department has released the final version of a rule to require employers to disclose relationships with consultants hired to “persuade workers not to form a union or support a union’s collective bargaining position.” According to the Department, the rule “is necessary because workers are frequently in the dark about who is trying to sway them when they exercise their labor rights.” However, Reuters  reports NAM and other business groups have opposed the new rule, stating that it would harm employers’ free speech rights. Meanwhile, the American Bar Association (ABA) has stated the rule may interfere with attorney-client privilege. IndustryWeek reports the new rule would require “employers to disclose when they hire or seek advice from consultants on fighting union organizing campaigns.” Specifically, it would require the reporting of “actions, conduct or communications that are undertaken with an object, explicitly or implicitly, directly or indirectly, to affect an employee’s decisions regarding his

read more Manufacturers and businesses mount opposition to Labor Department “Persuader” rule