State Budget Funds Manufacturing Initiatives
Manufacturing issues played a role throughout the session, with the bipartisan state budget funding a series of sector programs and initiatives.
The two-year budget includes $15 million annually for the state’s Manufacturing Innovation Fund, a popular program driving innovation, technology, and workforce initiatives for small and midsize manufacturers.
Additional two-year funding was provided for the Connecticut Technical Education and Career System ($380 million), Manufacturing Pipeline ($4.6 million), AdvanceCT ($4 million), and the manufacturing growth services organization CONNSTEP ($1 million).
The legislature’s Commerce Committee took the lead role on policies targeting the development of the sector’s next generation workforce.
HB 6755, which passed the legislature unanimously, establishes an advisory group to facilitate the expansion of an advanced manufacturing technology center at a regional community or technical college.
The advisory group will develop an implementation plan concerning the budget, timeline, and state, federal, and private sector funding mechanisms.
SB 1091, which passed both chambers unanimously, eliminates the unemployment reporting requirements established in the budget implementer bill in 2021.
Prior to the repeal, manufacturing companies would need to include 15 new fields (race, gender identity, veteran status, highest degree completed, etc.) in quarterly wage reports.
This bill greatly eases the reporting requirements for manufacturers and aligns Connecticut with the rest of the country.
The legislature also approved SB 1027, allowing the Department of Economic and Community Development commissioner to amend the agreement with an eligible aerospace company to allow the company one additional year to use tax benefits.
It similarly allows the aerospace company one additional year (i.e., until June 30, 2033) to use any carry-forward amounts (i.e., corporation business tax credits that exceed the annual maximum).
R&D Tax Credit
CBIA supported measures expanding the research and development tax credit to pass-through entities and allowing small to midsize manufacturers to make significant investments in process improvements, technology, and workforce development.
However, lawmakers unfortunately failed to approve that legislation or include the policy in the state budget, denying smaller firms a real competitive advantage.
CBIA will continue to advocate for this policy and work to engage legislators and other stakeholders.
Other bills of note that did not pass included:
- SB 1197: Allows local or regional boards of education to partner with local businesses to provide aerospace and aviation apprenticeship training programs to students. While the Appropriations and Education committees both unanimously approved the bill, the Senate failed to act on it.
- The Senate also failed to act on SB 1089, which required the Office of Workforce Strategy to develop an apprenticeship program to ensure access to training for careers in mechatronics, cybersecurity, three dimensional printing, Internet of things, and chartered global management accounting.
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