In recognition of October being declared Nebraska Manufacturing Month, Gov. Dave Heineman stopped at Smeal Fire Apparatus Co. in Snyder to highlight the importance of manufacturing to the state economy.
On Oct. 1, Heineman signed a proclamation declaring October as Nebraska Manufacturing Month.
“We are kicking off Nebraska Manufacturing Month, a time to reaffirm our commitment to Nebraska’s manufacturing base and to the industry which has helped our state become one of the strongest in the nation,” Heineman said after signing the proclamation. “To grow our manufacturing base, we must make the most of opportunities which will help communities attract investments that ensure long-term growth. And we must make a concerted effort to develop the workforce needed by manufacturers.”
Heineman said Nebraska exports $7 billion worth of manufactured goods and services to more than 170 countries, and nearly 10 percent of the state’s workforce are employed in the sector. In total, the sector accounts for about $12.5 billion of the state economy.
“Manufacturing jobs are important to America’s and Nebraska’s economies,” Heineman added. “Our goal is to make Nebraska an even better place in the future to live, to work and to raise a family and manufacturing jobs help us do that.”
With more than 2,700 manufacturers located in Nebraska, Heineman told the roughly 250 Smeal employees that manufacturing is the second leading industry in the state behind agriculture. Manufacturing exports have increased three times faster than the overall state economy since 2003, he added.
“When we look at the manufacturing sector of our state, it ranks right behind agriculture and it’s very, very critical,” he said.
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