The COVID-19 pandemic emphasized the importance of the United States industrial base, supply chains, and job training for the manufacturing workforce. Supply chain issues came to the fore with shortages of medical supplies and the need to quickly implement manufacturing capabilities to ensure more products could be produced in the United States.
A new NGA Center for Best Practices paper focuses on supply chain issues in advanced manufacturing and related sectors including infrastructure and transportation, renewable and alternative energy, and battery applications. These sectors have been particularly affected by supply chain challenges – impacting, in turn, a large number of additional industries.
Both the federal government and state and territorial governments have taken steps to strengthen U.S. supply chains. President Biden signed an Executive Order and requested industrial base reports from key federal agencies. Congress passed legislation targeting state and local needs during the pandemic. More recent legislation has focused on specific sectors, including infrastructure, transportation, renewable energy, and battery applications, and the manufacture of semiconductors with a variety of applications for national security and economic sectors.
State and territorial Governors are focused on implementing the new federal investments and requirements related to supply chains in infrastructure, semiconductor manufacturing, and renewable energy. While federal legislation has served as a significant driver of the investments, they are not the only drivers. Governors were already targeting several of these investment areas such as the production of electric vehicle batteries through traditional state-level economic development efforts and running into supply challenges even before the new federal investments. Governors are putting into place holistic approaches that help to better align their state and territorial initiatives, including in site development and workforce preparation with the new program models associated with the recent federal opportunities. They are working to address the impact of “Buy America” rules and domestic content guidelines on supply chains, along with other challenges they are facing.
Governors’ efforts through the National Governors Association related to semiconductor and supply chain legislation started at the NGA 2022 Winter Meeting. Through the spring and summer of 2022, Governors leading NGA released statements of support as Congress deliberated. Following passage of the CHIPS and Science Act, the same NGA leadership applauded Congress in a statement on the same day. At NGA’s 2022 Winter Meeting, Governors also held a discussion with the U.S. Transportation Secretary on implementing the historic bipartisan Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act, and they have advocated for infrastructure legislation dating back to the NGA Chairs’ Initiative on infrastructure beginning in 2019 and earlier.
Funding support for the supply chain brief was provided through NGA’s partnership with SSTI through an SSTI cooperative agreement with the National Institute of Standards & Technology. For further information, please contact Sally Rood in the NGA Center for Best Practices.