WASHINGTON, D.C. – New federal resources will provide The Ohio State University and four regional Economic Development Districts with a new strategic plan to create a regional advanced manufacturing innovation hub that will serve a 25-county region of Ohio. U.S. Sen. Sherrod Brown (D-OH) announced that The Ohio State University and four regional Economic Development Districts including Buckeye Hills- Hocking Valley Regional Development District (RDD), Reno/Eastgate Regional Council of Governments (RCOG), Youngstown/Northeast Ohio Four County Regional Planning and Development Organization (RPDO), and Akron/Ohio Mid-Eastern Governments Association (GA) will receive a grant from the U.S. Economic Development Administration (EDA) to develop a strategy to help the region increase competitiveness, economic growth, and job creation. The project is funded through the Investing in Manufacturing Communities Partnership (IMCP), which is designed to accelerate manufacturing programs and create good-paying jobs in the manufacturing sector.
“Together, The Ohio State University and these four regional Economic Development Districts can connect entrepreneurs, students, researchers, and workers with the resources needed to create the next generation of American manufacturing jobs,” Brown said. “Small businesses are essential to our economy, and through this award, Ohio can lead the way in economic development.”
EDA approved a $199,766 grant to The Ohio State University and the four regional Economic Development Districts.
Brown is the author of the Strengthening Employment Clusters to Organize Regional Success (SECTORS) Act, which would help ensure that Ohioans have the skills to qualify for new, good-paying positions and that businesses can hire from a local, skilled workforce. The SECTORS Act tailors workforce development to the needs of regional industry, allowing more workers to receive placements and attracting more businesses to a given region. The bill would organize stakeholders connected to a regional industry—businesses, unions, education and training providers, and local workforce and education system administrators—to develop plans for growing that industry. A range of groups are supporting the SECTORS Act, including the National Association of Manufacturers, which asked Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions (HELP) Committee leadership to include Brown’s legislation in larger job training legislation. The SECTORS Act was also included in the Building a Stronger America Act, a bipartisan bill introduced this month that is aimed at strengthening American manufacturing, exports, and competitiveness.