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The Importance of Workforce Diversity, Inclusion in New Hampshire

Thursday, July 19th, 2018

On air with New Hampshire Business Matters, WTPL-FM

New Hampshire Business Matters airs every third Wednesday of the month on WTPL-FM 107.7. Division of Economic Development Director Will Arvelo hosts the segments, discussing topics of interest in today’s state economy.


Tune into this month’s edition of New Hampshire Business Matters.


This month’s guest is Paula Parnagian of Eversource and the discussion is about the importance of workforce diversity and inclusion in New Hampshire.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Increasing Diversity, Inclusion in New Hampshire Makes it Stronger, Infuses Fresh Ideas

Tuesday, July 17th, 2018

Will Arvelo ~ NH Division of Economic Development

Will Arvelo is the director of the New Hampshire Division of Economic Development. – ed.

Diversity plays a valuable role in our communities and state; from it comes fresh ideas, innovation and new ways to look at old ways. Insuring that New Hampshire’s population continues to diversify and be inclusionary is a priority of the Division of Economic Development.

Data shows that New Hampshire’s population is becoming more diverse. According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the non-white population, including those that identify with two or more races, increased to 6.4 percent in 2017 and Latinos make up almost 4 percent of the population.

While these percentages may seem small in comparison to southern New England, it is undeniable that New Hampshire is changing and becoming more diverse.

As New Hampshire continues to evolve as part of a broader international community and as the U.S. continues to see significant demographic changes, the demographics within our state will also shift to reflect those changes.

In 2012, 21 percent of the U.S. population was non-white, or of two or more races. Also that year, 17 percent of the total U.S. population was of Latino/Hispanic descent. By 2060, the U.S. non-white population and those with two races or more will exceed 30 percent and those of Latino descent will also exceed 30 percent.

For our employers who are increasingly concerned about their ability to attract and retain a diverse workforce, this diversification is welcome in New Hampshire. Many are instituting initiatives to make their workplaces more welcoming and accepting of, not only different ways of thinking, but people’s differences.  We also know that younger people, white and non-white, prefer to be in diverse communities, whether that be their workplaces or living spaces.

This is good for all of us.


New Hampshire, like its neighboring states, is still challenged in its efforts to attract and retain a more diverse demographic. To that end, we are focusing on ways to be a state that is welcoming, accepting, and supportive. If we are to widen our competitive advantage, we need a diverse workforce.


There are many efforts in corporations, including Eversource, Eastern Bank, Hutchinson and others, and communities building advocacy and sustainability to achieve this goal. In addition, agencies including The Endowment for Health; Diversity Workforce Coalition; NAACP of the Seacoast; AARP, Welcome New Hampshire and many others that are working to make improvements across our state.

The Governor’s Advisory Council on Diversity and Inclusion will be central to this effort, with its recommendations due later this year. They will be used to create a sweeping, unifying strategy that brings all these efforts together to leverage resources, build a collective vision, build capacity, and have deep impact within a short time.

On July 26, a statewide working group will meet to begin building a unified, strong, sustainable effort around diversity and inclusion. Doing so will make New Hampshire more welcoming and attractive within our increasingly diverse nation and it will allow us to build a society reflective of diverse ways of being and thinking. It will also allow New Hampshire to continue to build and sustain its diverse economy and remain competitive regionally, nationally, and internationally.

Spotlight on New Hampshire’s Aerospace/Defense Industry at Farnborough International Airshow This Month

Tuesday, July 3rd, 2018

Nathaniel Nelson is an international trade officer with the Office of International Commerce and a member of the board of directors of the New Hampshire Aerospace and Defense Export Consortium. -ed.

New Hampshire’s high growth aerospace/defense industry will be highlighted next week at the Farnborough International Airshow and this is one of many activities this year aimed at helping hundreds of companies here continue to grow and get their products into global markets.

The state is sponsoring its first-ever booth at the show and the time is right to be in the spotlight. OIC and US Commercial Services staff, joined by a contingent of A&D businesses, is heading to England, ready to meet and mingle with some 1,500 exhibitors from 52 countries and thousands of people attending. At the last Farnborough Airshow, in 2016, $124 billion orders and commitments were placed, so there is good reason why it’s important for New Hampshire to be at this event.

The 4th annual New Hampshire Aerospace and Defense Conference was held in May, drawing industry leaders for the opportunity to hear from experts about issues and challenges.

According to the Aerospace Industries Association, New Hampshire has realized one of the largest percentages of growth in aerospace and defense exports. This comes as no surprise to the over 350 aerospace/defense companies in the state that employ 60,000 people.

Over the past few years, New Hampshire and its businesses have worked hard to grow the aerospace and defense industry and these efforts are paying off. In a recent post by Aerospace Manufacturing and Design, it noted “the Granite State is quickly becoming the industry’s Northeast hub” and is projected to see a 3.8 percent growth in employment over the next few years.

This has not happened by accident. Back in 2013, we created the New Hampshire Aerospace and Defense Export Consortium, with a mission to foster the most opportune foreign markets for its members. At the 5-year mark, it boasts nearly 100 members and is realizing significant growth.

That growth will continue. Earlier this year, OIC worked with NHADEC on a 5-year strategic plan that continues the membership growth trajectory and builds on services offered to members. As it rolls out, our aerospace and defense companies will have more opportunities to market products, increase sales, and have more networking opportunities around the world.

OIC is continuing its work with the US Department of Defense, Office of Economic Adjustment, on several federal grant projects, which are being used to help A&D businesses weather the impact of defense program budget changes. In New Hampshire, OIC has used these federal grants to help companies consider international markets where their products would be in demand. Accordingly, businesses have, for example, learned strategies to think about technology commercialization and were provided with the tools necessary to conduct thorough market research.

Further, OIC has worked with the five New England states to receive a joint grant of $1.5 million to create the New England Regional Defense Industry Collaboration. This organization will use grant funds to coordinate the growth of defense-related businesses across the six-state New England region.

The primary goals of the organization will be to aid businesses in meeting new cybersecurity requirements for businesses in the defense industry supply chain, as well as to create a trusted supplier network that will make it easier for large defense contractors to locate smaller suppliers that are able to meet their production, certification and process requirements.

These relationships will elevate the technological knowledge and sophistication of DoD small and medium-sized manufacturers, improving their competitiveness, ability to innovate, and overall value to the DoD. This is a tremendous opportunity for the region and will continue not only the region’s growth, but the state’s, as well.

This is a great time for the state’s aerospace and defense industry. Through efforts by the state and its partners, such as the U.S. Commercial Service and NHADEC, the industry is continuing to expand and grow. We’re excited for this growth and all that it means for the state and region.

Sunshine, Spending Forecasted for New Hampshire’s July 4 Holiday Week

Friday, June 29th, 2018

Parades and fireworks highlight the 4th of July holiday period in New Hampshire.

More than 1 million out-of-state visitors are expected to spend in excess of $155 million over the Fourth of July holiday, according to the Division of Travel and Tourism Development.

Spanning nine days between June 29 and July 8, the holiday period officially kicks off New Hampshire’s busiest travel season. Overall, DTTD expects a record-breaking 2018 summer travel season drawing more than 3.4 million visitors who will spend $1.8 billion.

“The Fourth of July is a critical time for businesses and attractions throughout New Hampshire that draw visitors to experience outdoor adventures such as kayaking, biking, ATVing, and camping that are so popular during the summer months, as well as the state’s tax-free shopping,” said DTTD Director Victoria Cimino.  “We’re looking forward to welcoming visitors from throughout the Northeast and beyond.”

The majority of people visiting the state during this holiday period will travel from New England and the Middle Atlantic states.  Outdoor recreation, patriotic events and visiting friends and relatives are popular activities during the Fourth of July period.

Tax-free NH Fights Back: Governor Announces Strategy in Sales Tax Case

Thursday, June 28th, 2018

Commissioner Caswell, left; Gov. Sununu; Attorney General Gordon MacDonald

Governor Chris Sununu will ask the Executive Council next month to approve a proclamation declaring a special session this summer, calling back lawmakers to consider legislation to protect Granite State businesses from improper attempts by other states to force them to collect sales and use taxes.

Sununu was joined by Senate President Chuck Morse; House Speaker Gene Chandler; Attorney General Gordon MacDonald; Commissioners Taylor Caswell and Lindsey Stepp, and business owners from around the state in announcing New Hampshire’s plan to respond to the US Supreme Court’s decision last week in the case of South Dakota v. Wayfair, Inc.

Pursuant to the authority granted to the Governor and Executive Council in Part 2, Article 50 of the New Hampshire Constitution, Sununu will ask the Council to approve a proclamation declaring a special legislative session at its meeting July 11.

The Governor’s office is working with legislative leadership and the Attorney General’s office to craft legislation. While final details are still being worked out, New Hampshire will erect every possible and constitutionally permissible legal and procedural hurdle to prevent other states from forcing our businesses to collect sales and use taxes. Some of the provisions the state will enact:

  • Any out of state taxing authority seeking to audit or impose tax collection obligations on a New Hampshire business will be required to notify the New Hampshire Department of Justice;
  • Before proceeding, the out of state taxing authority will be required to receive a written determination, from the New Hampshire Department of Justice, that the authority’s statutes provide certain protections and meet strict requirements;
  • These protections and requirements will include a safe harbor for a certain amount of sales, a prohibition against retroactive enforcement, a safe harbor for small businesses, and other strict requirements. In addition, an out of state taxing authority will have to show that its laws will not impose an unconstitutional burden on New Hampshire businesses;
  • The New Hampshire Department of Justice will be empowered to file an expedited suit to block any attempt to impose  tax collection obligations undertaken in violation of this new law.

“With this proposal, we will send a message to every out of state taxing jurisdiction and authority. If you try to come into our state and force our businesses to collect a sales tax in manner that violates our laws or the United States Constitution, you will be in for the fight of your life,” Sununu said. “Live free or die is not just a slogan on a license plate. It is the very essence of who we are. Our State Constitution says that ‘the people of this State have the sole and exclusive right of governing themselves as a free, sovereign, and independent State.’ Working together, we will do everything in our power to prevent other States from violating this principle by imposing arcane sales and use tax obligations on New Hampshire businesses.”

The US Supreme Court decision last week in the Wayfair case, said Attorney General Gordon MacDonald displaces 50 years of precedent.

“My office stands ready to carefully monitor the development of the law in the wake of this decision, and to assist the Governor and legislative leaders in crafting legislation that seeks to protect New Hampshire’s citizens and businesses,” he said.

Business and Economic Affairs Commissioner Taylor Caswell said, “The Governor’s action today should send a clear message to the NH business community and beyond that this state will aggressively defend our pro-growth low-tax economy.”

Senate President Chuck Morse stated, “New Hampshire’s freedom from an income or sales tax is something we take great pride in because it makes our state competitive for businesses and supports a quality of life our citizens are accustomed to. The South Dakota v Wayfair decision attempts to strip our state of this distinction and may impose burdensome tax obligations on our businesses and our citizens. This decision does not recognize how sales tax-free states like New Hampshire have drawn many citizens to live, work and start a business here for that very reason. I support Governor Sununu’s plan to fight back against this decision because of the untold effect it would have on our state’s economy and small businesses. Swift action must be taken to defend our business’ freedom from collecting taxes for other states in which they have no physical presence. I look forward to working with our Senate and House colleagues to establish these protections in statue as soon as possible.”

This proposal will provide the maximum protection possible under state and federal law.

 

 

Norwegian-based AutoStore Systems Opens U.S. Headquarters in New Hampshire

Wednesday, June 27th, 2018

Norwegian-based AutoStore Systems celebrates the opening of its U.S. headquarters in Derry this week.

Increased growth in its North American market has led a Norwegian-based company to establish its U.S. headquarters in Derry and this week, AutoStore System celebrated the expansion with a grand opening.

AutoStore is a high-density cube storage system.

AutoStore is a high-density cube storage system, consisting of five standard modules: Robot, port or workstation, grid, bin, and controller. The robots drive on the top of the grid to access inventory store in the bins below. The bins are retrieved, put away and delivered to ports or workstations as requested.

“Due to the continued increase in activity in the North American market, we felt the only decision was to open an office close to this market,” said Paul Roy, managing director – North America.

The new 20,000-square-foot facility, at 3 Corporate Park Dr., will house a U.S.- based team to support the North American market and showcase a fully operational AutoStore grid. The facility will also store spare parts for faster deliveries, as well as offer customer service support, training programs and sales support.

 

“Having a fully operational grid with eight robots in our Derry facility will allow us to not only store and retrieve our own parts for delivery to our NA partners but also provide a realistic demonstration and training environment for potential customers and partners needing all levels of training,” Roy said.

 

Catching Up with the New Hampshire High Tech Council and its Upcoming Initiatives

Tuesday, June 26th, 2018

NH Business Matters airs at 2:05 pm every third Wednesday of the month on WTPL-FM 107.7 FM

On our monthly New Hampshire Business Matters segment on WTPL-FM 107.7, we checked in with the New Hampshire High Technology Council to catch up on some of its exciting initiatives positive changes.

Technology is one of New Hampshire’s key industries and it’s vibrant and growing. Tune in for a listen about this exciting news.

Prudential Cleanroom Services Expands to Nashua, Celebrates Opening the Largest Cleanroom Laundry in the US

Monday, June 25th, 2018

POS is the leader in cleanroom laundry services, which is important to industries such as aerospace and life sciences that need 21st century cleanliness in their processes.

Prudential Cleanroom Services, a world leader in cleanroom laundry service systems, celebrated the opening of its Nashua cleanroom laundry processing facility, an event bringing together state and local dignitaries, as well as the employees.

NH Economic Development Director Will Arvelo

“We are very pleased to welcome Prudential Cleanroom Services to Nashua,” said Will Arvelo, director of the Division of Economic Development. “The capabilities it provides are vital to the many companies whose advanced manufacturing processes require high tech industrial laundry services. We look forward to watching them grow and prosper in New Hampshire.”

PCS is a division of California-based Prudential Overall Supply. When the company went looking for a loction to expand, Nashua quickly became an obvious choice because of its location and infrastructure. Cynthia Harrington, business development manager at DED, assisted the company with its expansion.

The company is building a 131,371-square-foot commercial laundry facility at 45 Simon St., on a 14-acre tract. Prudential completed the first of three phases; building a one-story 70,000 square foot facility, which includes offices, industrial space, employee areas and loading docks with 136 parking spaces on site for staff.

The next phase will be followed by a 45,000-square-foot section and, the last phase will be a 16,280-square-foot addition.

“This facility now provides over 85 well-paying jobs for the greater Nashua community, and provides our customers with world class cleanroom laundry services throughout the Northeast,” said Stefan Schurter, Prudential’s senior vice president commented at the ceremony,

Commissioner Caswell’s Statement on South Dakota v. Wayfair U.S. Supreme Court Decision

Thursday, June 21st, 2018

Commissioner Taylor Caswell’s statement on the South Dakota v. Wayfair decision handed down by the U.S. Supreme Court.

“The Wayfair decision handed down today by the United States Supreme Court tells New Hampshire businesses that they now must collect taxes for politicians in other states that they did not elect. This is unacceptable.

“New Hampshire businesses have never, ever, collected a sales tax and New Hampshire residents have never, ever, paid an income tax.  Imposing this new requirement on us isn’t just an administrative burden, it goes against what New Hampshire stands for:  Live Free or Die.

“The thousands of small businesses that drive our economy must not be forced to become tax collectors for other states. I am working with state leaders to determine a path forward aimed at defending New Hampshire’s business community from this modern-day taxation without representation scheme.”

Taylor Caswell
Commissioner
NH Department of Business and Economic Affairs

A New Approach to Economic Development in New Hampshire

Wednesday, June 20th, 2018

Commissioner Taylor Caswell 

Last year, Governor Sununu proposed the division of the Department of Resources and Economic Development, creating the Department of Business and Economic Affairs. Since its approval by the Legislature, this new agency has been a catalyst for increasing opportunities for New Hampshire to modernize and vastly improve the focus and practice of how we do economic development.

This couldn’t have happened at a better time. The practice of economic development has changed drastically over the past decade.  States and cities are moving away from the longstanding focus on government-run business recruitment and standard worker ‘unemployment training’ programs that gave little thought to what might come next for those workers.

What does this mean for New Hampshire?

It means we can hone in on the needs of our businesses here first, and leverage our business community with our state’s regional strengths to develop a compelling case for new businesses to come here.

It means we build new, more innovative strategies to recruit talent to our state.

It means connecting education and training directly to employers and jobs.

It means a new, more aggressive entry into the global marketplace to find opportunity for our small businesses seeking new markets.

It means refreshed, meaningful relationships with our state’s incredible network of public and private academic institutions, linking them with state policymakers and business leaders statewide.

It means working to update and increase the predictability of the state’s regulatory environment and use our small and agile government as a true advantage.

It means constructing new partnerships and collaborations across a broad universe of stakeholders to focus on building communities where people want to live and work and telling that story effectively and to as many people outside the state as we can.

New Hampshire’s economy is growing fast. Companies are expanding or moving here, and people are working.  In fact, in 2017, New Hampshire’s economy was the second fastest growing economy in the nation and our unemployment rate remains low.

My goal is to build this new system and create an economy that is resilient, vibrant, collaborative, intentional, and protects what we love best about New Hampshire.

The new Department of Business and Economic Affairs has the tools it needs to get there. We have the widely-respected Division of Travel & Tourism Development, which has a marketing team that is among the best in the nation and stokes the engine of New Hampshire’s crucial hospitality economy.  In 2017, its work helped generate 2.23 million visitor trips to New Hampshire, which yielded $5.5 billion in spending, maintaining 48,000 jobs, and generating $269 million in tax revenue for the state.

Our Division of Economic Development helps businesses connect to, and fund, job training; works with existing and new business leaders to finance and expand their economic footprint; guides companies seeking to access global markets or win government contracts, and helps drive our entrepreneurial economy.  Its work has direct impact on the profitability of our state’s employers and creates value for the state and residents.

The combined teams are creating new stakeholder collaborations, integrating marketing efforts and strategies, and working hard to establish New Hampshire as a leader in holistic, collaborative state economic development.

I look forward to working with you.

Taylor Caswell
Commissioner
New Hampshire Department of Business and Economic Affairs