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Ryan Lindsay / Connecticut Public Radio

Gun manufacturer Colt says it plans to end production of AR-15-style rifles for the civilian market. The company plans to limit its production to police and military contracts. 

Magicpiano / Wikimedia Commons

Abandoned factories tagged with graffiti. Vacant properties marked by broken windows and overgrown lawns. This hour, we consider the impact of urban blight on communities and hear how some local municipalities are working to improve quality of life.

We check in with the cities of Waterbury and Hartford, where significant strides have been made to survey and address blight.

We also talk with Laura Bliss of CityLab and with a housing official in Baltimore. How effective has the Maryland city’s Vacants to Value program been at reducing the number of vacant, blighted properties? We find out. 

Bossi / Creative Commons

This hour, we learn about efforts to construct a new casino in Bridgeport, Connecticut. We talk to Hearst Connecticut Media reporter Emilie Munson about a possible deal between the city and the state’s tribes, and consider the implications for MGM, which also has its sights on the Southwest region. 

Plus, the Trump administration has threatened to impose new tariffs on Mexico, raising questions for manufacturers, many of which have already felt the impact of the U.S.’ ongoing trade war with China. We take an in-depth look at this story with The New York Times’ Ben Casselman and a Connecticut-based economist.

Robots have revolutionized auto manufacturing, making plants safer and products more reliable — and reducing the number of people involved in the process. But walk inside a modern auto plant, and you'll quickly realize that robots have hardly replaced the human touch — at least, not in some areas.

U.S. Labor Secretary Alexander Acosta led a roundtable discussion on the Eastern Connecticut Manufacturing Pipeline Initiative in Montville on Tuesday, April 16. The pipeline is funded by Acosta's department through a local board.
Frankie Graziano / Connecticut Public Radio

The United States Department of Labor Secretary was in Connecticut on Tuesday, April 16 to see for himself efforts to reskill the state’s manufacturing workforce.

Adam Hushin / Connecticut Public Radio

Connecticut has launched a new collaborative effort to support manufacturing industry in the state. The collaboration, called “TEAM Works,” -- Technology, Education, and Advanced Manufacturing -- joins together Connecticut’s public and private colleges, comprehensive and technical high schools, small and large manufacturers, and state agencies. 

Courtesy: Workforce Alliance

With national unemployment rates the lowest they’ve been in nearly half a century, many employers can’t find enough skilled workers. In Connecticut, manufacturers are especially feeling the pinch. The state Department of Labor estimates the industry will need to hire tens of thousands of qualified workers in the next five years.

Harriet Jones / WNPR

United Technologies, headquartered in Farmington, Connecticut, has announced it will break into three companies by 2020. What will this mean for jobs and business in the state? This hour, we take a closer look.

'Untapped' Talent Engage Skills Training For Better Employment

Sep 18, 2018
Hector Marrero (left) and Elethia Mills (right) are among more than 200 Hartford residents ages 18 to 24 who Community Renewal Team has connected to secondary education or job-skill training.
BILL MORGAN / Hartford Business Journal

Hector Marrero is beginning to understand the difference between a career and a job.

The 21-year-old Hartford native had abandoned high school, adult education and other job-course programs.

Lori Mack / Connecticut Public Radio

Nearly 200 employees at a United Technologies Aerospace Systems plant in Cheshire went on strike Monday, after negotiations over a new contract failed to reach agreement on wage and benefit levels.

Jenn Vargas / Flickr

Today, we take a look at a series of disturbing cases of alleged medical malpractice of inmates incarcerated in Connecticut.

Frankie Graziano / Connecticut Public Radio

United States Senator Chris Murphy told employees of the Mazak Corporation in Windsor Locks Monday that a re-industrialization of America is afoot. He’s excited about Connecticut’s manufacturing jobs outlook, but he said that even more jobs can be had if the Pentagon makes a deeper commitment to “buy American.”

Harriet Jones / Connecticut Public Radio

Electric Boat says it will expand its waterfront facilities in Groton and increase its workforce by 1,900 jobs, in a partnership with Connecticut that will also see it receive millions of dollar in state aid. 

Firearms manufacturer Remington Outdoor has filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection in hopes of staving off creditors amid a slump in sales and public outcry over gun violence.

Reuters reports that Remington's creditors, including Franklin Templeton Investments and JPMorgan Asset Management, have agreed to exchange debt for equity in the company.

Remington was founded in 1816 in upstate New York and is one of the largest and oldest U.S. producers of firearms. It was bought in 2007 by Cerberus Capital Management for $118 million.

Chion Wolf / WNPR

Catherine Smith is Commissioner of Connecticut's Department of Economic and Community Development. This hour, she stops by for an update on the state's economy and manufacturing workforce.

Later, we also check in with Goodwin College President Mark Scheinberg. How is his school training the next generation of manufacturing employees? We find out and we also hear from you. 

President Donald Trump signs a proclamation on steel and aluminum imports.
Joyce N. Boghosian / White House

Last week President Donald Trump announced he will levy tariffs on steel and aluminum imports of 25 percent and 10 percent respectively. And it’s already having an impact on Connecticut companies.

Arthur Caranta / Flickr

They may not look like R2D2 or BB8, but in 2018, robots are an important part of our world.

This hour we talk about ​automation—new advances in “smart” technology during a period of time that’s been dubbed the “Fourth Industrial Revolution.”

Tikeyah Whittle / WNPR

If you’re a tea drinker, then you probably know the name Cindi Bigelow. She’s the third generation president and CEO of Fairfield-based Bigelow Tea.

Chion Wolf / WNPR

Catherine Smith is Commissioner of Connecticut's Department of Economic and Community Development. This hour, she stops by for an update on the state's economy and manufacturing workforce.

Later, we also check in with Goodwin College President Mark Scheinberg. How is his school training the next generation of manufacturing employees? We find out and we also hear from you. 

Chion Wolf / WNPR

Brian Dunnigan is a web designer and co-founder of the Hawthorn Watch Co. in Vernon, Connecticut.

Coming up, we discuss the inspiration behind his business and talk about Connecticut’s role in manufacturing the hands of time.

But first: mastering the skills of traditional craftsmen.

We hear how an exhibit at the Connecticut Historical Society celebrates the bond between artists and their apprentices.

Arthur Caranta / Flickr

They may not look like R2D2 or BB8, but in 2018, robots are an important part of our world.

This hour we talk about ​automation—new advances in “smart” technology during a period of time that’s been dubbed the “Fourth Industrial Revolution.”

Harriet Jones / WNPR

Manufacturers in Connecticut are facing a dilemma. On one hand they have tons of work - on the other, they have a shortage of people to do it. 

UTC

United Technologies’s aerospace units are about to get a lot bigger. The Farmington-based conglomerate has announced it will buy Rockwell Collins in a $30 billion dollar deal -- its biggest ever. 

UTC

Although it’s hard to tell who quit and who was fired, United Technologies’s CEO Greg Hayes did issue a statement Wednesday saying he was leaving President Donald Trump’s manufacturing council. 

Tikeyah Whittle

If you’re a tea drinker, then you probably know the name Cindi Bigelow. She’s the third generation president and CEO of Fairfield-based Bigelow Tea.

Harriet Jones / WNPR

There was a lot of talk during the election campaign about bringing jobs back to America, and revitalizing manufacturing.

That’s a topic that resonates in Connecticut, where there’s a complex ecosystem of aerospace parts makers.

Electric Boat

During confirmation hearings for Labor Secretary nominee Alexander Acosta, Connecticut Senator Chris Murphy urged the nominee to commit to workforce training programs that could be cut in Trump's budget proposal. 

Luis Pérez / Creative Commons

From self-service menus to self-driving cars to... androids around the water cooler? This hour, we explore the past, present, and future of workforce automation. 

U.S. Navy

As President-elect, Donald Trump has had defense companies on high alert, as he tweets about enforcing cost savings, and potentially scaling back previously key programs like the F-35 fighter jet.

Harriet Jones / WNPR

Thousands of machinists at Pratt and Whitney begin work under a new contract on Monday, after union members voted over the weekend to ratify the deal with management. 

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