HARTFORD-The state has invested more than $43.7 million as part of the Manufacturing Innovation Fund to assist nearly 900 companies since 2014, according to an annual According to an annual report recently released by Gov. Dannel Malloy.
The Manufacturing Innovation Fund has created and retained 4,496 jobs and trained over 7,300 since it was signed into law by Malloy four years ago. MIF aims to support the growth, innovation and progress of Connecticut’s advanced manufacturing sector.
Malloy said the results demonstrate how the state’s investment in advanced manufacturing has paid off.
“Advanced manufacturing is and will remain a critical part of Connecticut’s economy and way of life for years to come. From our unparalleled talent pipeline to our state of the art programs and equipment, the investments we make today will set out employers up for long-term success,” Malloy said.
The program, which is managed by an advisory board consisting of manufacturing leaders from across the state, focuses on distressed communities, with 47 percent of manufacturers residing within 37 designated communities. Of those designated communities Bristol and New Britain are included.
“The Manufacturing Innovation Fund was created as a direct response to the needs of Connecticut’s expanding manufacturing sector that is slated to create thousands of jobs over the next decade,” Commissioner of the Department of Economic and Community Development, Catherine Smith said.
“The year-over-year increase of participating companies, employees trained and expansion of program offerings shows that our strategic approaches to the needs of the manufacturing sector are working.”
In just last year, over 4,500 full-time employees completed training that resulted in upgraded skills and increased productivity, according to the report.
Specific programs in the Manufacturing Innovation Fund include:
Voucher Program: Provides matching grants ranging from $10,000 to $50,000 for technical assistance, prototype development, specialized equipment upgrades and research and development.
Energy on the Line Program: Leverages the Connecticut Green Bank’s Commercial Property Assessed Clean Energy (C-Pace) program to provide manufacturers financing energy efficiency investments.
Incumbent Worker Training Program: Matching up to $50,000 per employer to train workers. Projects are awarded up to $100,000 per company and a dollar to dollar match.
Pre-Apprentice and Apprenticeship Program: Expands the workforce by providing a demand-driven apprenticeship program that combines a structured work schedule (on-the job training) with related classroom instruction ending with competency credentials.
Connecticut Dream It. Do It.: Provides students, parents and families, and educators with a wide variety of resources and programs that dispel misconceptions about the 21st century manufacturing workplace, and introduce students to the broad range of educational and career opportunities that manufacturing offers.
Research and Innovation: Provides investment in manufacturing for research and technology development in areas of advanced composites, high rate additive manufacturing and other leading-edge advancements.