Engineering info about stimulus funds
After spending hours trying to find actionable information on where $787 billion in stimulus funding is going to pay for building construction and renovation/retrofit projects that benefit engineering companies, I gave up. I became angry at what should be a transparent process of identifying projects so that engineers can make inquiries. I became suspicious: sporadic announcements on projects being funded are only trickling through various media, and some companies are hosting paid-attendance seminars on stimulus projects and funding. President Obama’s promises for accountability and transparency were going to go unmet.
But I relaxed and tried again, and for some reason, the resources just appeared after a little more digging. To save you some hassle and to expedite your business development efforts, here are some helpful hyperlinks at the federal level:
www.recovery.gov : the official federal website for overarching information on the stimulus bill, also known as American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA).
www.recovery.gov/?q=content/state-recovery-page : A deep link with a state map. Click on any state to be linked to that state’s home page for ARRA funding projects. This is a big help.
www.recovery.gov/?q=content/agencies : A deep link with a list of federal agencies and their websites that describes how they are distributing ARRA funds.
www.sba.gov/recovery : Many engineering firms are “small businesses.” Here’s a link to the Small Business Administration’s ARRA clearinghouse.
There are other websites I recommend, which are maintained either by volunteer organizations or by institutions. These are just a few; I have others at my blog at www.csemag.com/blogs , which I will update from time to time.
www.stimuluswatch.org : Updated every 10 min, this volunteer-maintained website has hyperlinks to state- and city-level information for shovel-ready projects. It also has project descriptions and ratings by visitors as to whether the project is critical. The visitor comments are fascinating.
www.stimuluswatch.org/home/faqs : An important deep link on stimuluswatch.com that is too easy to ignore. Read it!
www.nyserda.org/economicrecovery : This New York site shows how statel-level information on ARRA projects should be handled.
recovery.vermont.gov/energy : Vermont’s energy-related projects for ARRA stimulus funds. Nice job!
www.ncef.org/school-modernization : National Clearinghouse for Educational Facilities’ page about ARRA.
If you have found useful websites on stimulus funding, please let me know.
Send your questions and comments to: Michael.Ivanovich@reedbusiness.com
Annual Salary Survey
After almost a decade of uncertainty, the confidence of plant floor managers is soaring. Even with a number of challenges and while implementing new technologies, there is a renewed sense of optimism among plant managers about their business and their future.
The respondents to the 2014 Plant Engineering Salary Survey come from throughout the U.S. and serve a variety of industries, but they are uniform in their optimism about manufacturing. This year’s survey found 79% consider manufacturing a secure career. That’s up from 75% in 2013 and significantly higher than the 63% figure when Plant Engineering first started asking that question a decade ago.