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Manufacturer's Forum Set for Oct. 14

September 28, 2010

Placer County will hold a first-of-its-kind forum Thursday, Oct. 14 to consider ways to strengthen the manufacturing sector of the local economy.

The 2010 Manufacturer’s Forum will take place from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. at Renesas Electronics America, 7501 Foothills Blvd. in Roseville. The event is sponsored by the Placer County Economic Development Board (EDB).

“We hope this forum will appeal particularly to manufacturers with operations in Placer County and firms that are interested in locating or expanding here,” County Executive Officer Thomas M. Miller said. “Our goal is to have a forum where manufacturers, elected officials and other interested parties can discuss ways to make it easier to do business in Placer County. We need to make sure our county remains competitive so local manufacturers want to stay here and others want to join them.”

The keynote speaker will be President Jack M. Stewart of the California Manufacturers and Technology Association.

Other featured speakers will include Director Joel A. Ayala of the Governor’s Office of Economic Development; Director Ryan Sharp of the Center for Strategic Economic Research in Sacramento; Jes Vargas, a consultant to Sierra College’s Center for Applied Competitive Technologies; and Brian McMahon, executive director of the California Employment Training Panel.

The forum also will have two panel discussions: one an interactive session featuring local manufacturers and another session focused on tools and techniques manufacturers can use to control and reduce costs.

“Manufacturing currently is a relatively small sector of Placer County’s economy, but our county has a lot to offer manufacturers, including a well-educated workforce, a central location in the Sacramento region and available land and buildings,” Vice Chair Robert M. Weygandt of the Placer County Board of Supervisors said.

“Adding manufacturing jobs is an effective way to boost a community’s economy because generally new manufacturing jobs each create about 2 ½ jobs in other sectors,” said Supervisor Jennifer Montgomery.

Supervisors Weygandt and Montgomery represent the Board of Supervisors on the EDB, an advisory body that assists the county with its business attraction and retention efforts, film-promotion program and Business Advantage Network.

Supervisor Weygandt was president of the EDB last year and Supervisor Montgomery currently is vice chair. This year’s EDB chair is Steven J. Nichols, Northern Region services and sales director for Pacific Gas & Electric Co.

All three will join other local elected officials and executives to offer opening remarks, introduce speakers and serve as moderators for the panel discussions.

The EDB has representatives from Placer County; the town of Loomis; and the cities of Auburn, Colfax, Lincoln, Rocklin and Roseville; as well as members who represent agriculture, education, utilities, manufacturing and tourism. Later this year, the EDB will add a healthcare representative.

Manufacturing businesses in Placer County are mostly small to medium in size, but agile and extremely diverse. They create top-quality niche products and high-performance components for both mechanical and high-technology applications. The creative process involves skilled craftsmen, who can produce parts just in time for sale to global markets. Placer County also has its share of well-known larger firms, including the internationally recognized Hewlett-Packard; Renesas Electronics America (formerly NEC); Gladding, McBean; and Sierra Pacific Industries.

The cost of the forum is $35 per person in advance and $40 at the door. The cost includes a continental breakfast and luncheon.

Reservations will be accepted through Sept. 30.

For more information or to register for the forum, call Kelly Kreeger at 530-889-4016.