The governor signed a bill that will help to keep Sikorsky headquartered in Connecticut for several years.
The Connecticut Strategic Defense Investment Act was signed by Gov. Dannel Malloy at Housatonic Community College in Bridgeport on Monday afternoon.
“This is a bold, forward-thinking agreement that will not only impact thousands of jobs directly at Sikorsky’s worldwide headquarters, but also will have an impact on the hundreds of small businesses who employ thousands more throughout the state and serve as suppliers to the company. Competition in today’s worldwide economic climate is fierce, and Connecticut is showing that we remain a valued leader where businesses can maintain a competitive edge well into the future,” Malloy said.
In September, Malloy and Lockeed Martin reached a deal to keep Sikorsky headquartered in Stratford.
Under the deal, Sikorsky will choose Connecticut to build nearly 200 new CH-53K King Stallion helicopters for the U.S. Navy. Lockheed reportedly considered numerous states for production of the helicopter.
Malloy said the deal is expected to retain and grow about 8.000 jobs at Sikorsky Aircraft until 2032. According to the deal, Sikorsky agreed to nearly double its spending of $350 million per year among in-state suppliers.
“Connecticut is known internationally as a worldwide aerospace leader, and that is because of the strong number of aerospace manufacturers who call our state home in addition to the talented and robust workforce that provide these companies with a skilled aptitude that is second to none,” Malloy said.
Later that month, during a special session, the Senate and House passed a bill to keep Sikorsky in state.
“This legislation demonstrates our commitment to their continued success, and Connecticut’s continued economic growth. I applaud Governor Malloy’s leadership, the General Assembly, and the Sikorsky team on this important partnership,” Lt. Governor Nancy Wyman said.
Days later, the Teamsters Union 1150 approved the state’s agreement with Lockheed Martin.
Housatonic Community College is one of several community colleges in the state that have Advanced Manufacturing Technology Programs. These programs are designed to help prepare students "for good-paying manufacturing jobs" such as Sikorsky, according to the governor's office.
“CSCU is committed to the state’s manufacturing sector through our Advanced Manufacturing programs and partnerships with the state’s manufacturing companies to deliver a highly skilled workforce,” Connecticut State Colleges and Universities President Mark Ojakian said in a statement on Monday.
Ojakian went on to say that the state "benefits from a knowledgeable labor force."
"In less than 10 months, CSCU’s Advanced Manufacturing Technology Centers are successfully helping students launch careers in high-tech manufacturing jobs. Students emerging from these programs are already contributing to Connecticut’s economic growth today, and will continue to power our economy well into the future," Ojakian said.
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