Monthly Archives: January 2013

carconnectionGeneral Motors is set to invest $600 million into a brand new shop and press for the assembly plant where it makes Buick LaCrosse and Chevrolet Malibu. The company’s statement and summary are provided by Auto News. You can see the original article on their website here.

Mike Colias | Automotive NewsJanuary 28, 2013

DETROIT — General Motors said it will invest $600 million in a new paint shop and stamping press at the assembly plant where it makes the Chevrolet Malibu and Buick LaCrosse.

In a statement today, GM said the planned work at the Fairfax Assembly plant in Kansas City, Kansas, will be the largest investment in a single plant since the company’s emergence from bankruptcy in July 2009.

Construction is slated to begin later this year and last about two years. It won’t affect production, GM said in a statement.

GM employs 3,561 hourly and 316 salaried workers at Fairfax, which opened in 1945. Last year, workers assembled 277,454 cars there on three shifts — 220,893 Malibus and 56,561 LaCrosses, according to the Automotive News Data Center.

‘Vote of confidence’

GM will expand the plant by about 500,000 square feet, or 15 percent, to 3.7 million square feet — a total footprint equal to about 20 Wal-Mart Supercenters.

GM CEO Dan Akerson called the investment a “vote of confidence” in the plant’s workers and its leadership.

“When we’re done, you can say with pride that you work in one of the crown jewels of GM’s global manufacturing system,” Akerson said, according to a transcript of his remarks to workers at an on-site event to announce the investment.

Akerson appeared at the plant with Kansas Gov. Sam Brownback and several GM and UAW leaders, including Joe Ashton, UAW national vice president and head of the union’s GM department.

“These leaders know that we are in a commercial war with companies like Volkswagen and Hyundai,” Akerson said.

The company plans to construct a 450,000 square-foot building for the paint shop, which will feature new tools and robots aimed at reducing energy use and improving quality. It “will deliver a flawless finish and optimal corrosion protection, but consume dramatically less energy and water,” Akerson said.

GM said the paint shop will use about half of the energy per vehicle as the existing shop and on a 20 percent smaller footprint. It will use a new coating that provides better corrosion resistance by getting better coating in a vehicle’s recesses and cavities.

Part of $1.5 billion plan

This month, GM North America President Mark Reuss said during a speech at the Automotive News World Congress that the company plans to invest $1.5 billion in North American facilities this year. The Fairfax investment is the largest component of that, GM said.

Over the last decade, GM has invested nearly $2 billion in the Fairfax plant. Other big infusions included $651 million for the launch of the Saturn Aura in 2006; and $722 million in 2003 for the launch of the 2004 Malibu.


Congratulations to the following women who were honored for their positive impact on the companies they represent, as well as the manufacturing industry overall. You can access their profiles by reading the release on The Manufacturing Institute’s website, as well as on the site’s event page.

Women in Manufacturing 1st Annual STEP Awards Program – Washington DC

The following STEP Award honorees are the faces of exciting careers in manufacturing and were chosen to be honored because they each made significant achievements in manufacturing through positive impact on their company and the industry as a whole.

Karla Aaron
Hialeah Metal Spinning, Inc.
Lorrie Acord
Pelco Products Inc.
Susan Adams
Able Manufacturing & Assembly, LLC
Tracy Albers
GrafTech International
Amy Alberts
Deb Anderson
Summers Manufacturing Co., Inc.
Cathy Bailey
Modine Manufacturing Company
Connie Baker
Jennifer Bare
ConMed Linvatec
Teresa Beach-Shelow
Superior Joining Technologies, Inc.
Christine Benz
Ruby Bernard
Eastman Chemical Company
Allison Blodig
Bio-Microbics, Inc.
Diane Bond
Commercial Vehicle Group, Inc.
Donna Bossman
Ingersoll Rand
Sharon Bower
Norma Byron
Ashlawn Energy, LLC
Margaret Cannon
Eastman Chemical Company
Mary Jo Cartwright
Batesville Casket Company
Dawn Cavaliere
Laurie Chandley
Southeastern Container, Inc
Lin Chape
Vermeer Corporation
Andrea Chavez
Ball Aerospace & Technologies Corp.
Terri Chicosky
Raquel Chole
Dudek & Bock Spring Manufacturing Co.
Nancy Cole
NCC Engineering
Martha Collins
Air Products
Molly Conn
HOERBIGER Corporation of America
Colleen Wood Cordova
Kennametal, Inc.
Cathy Costanzo
Exide Technologies
Carol Craig
Craig Technologies
Nancy Crews
Custom Manufacturing & Engineering (CME)
Bobbi Cummins
Leggett & Platt
Leah Curry
Toyota Motor Manufacturing, Indiana
Bethanne DeArmitt
Somerset Welding & Steel, Inc.
Vickie DeThomas
Diana Devlin
Spartan Motors, Inc.
Julia DiCorleto
Saint-Gobain Performance Plastics
Melinda Donnelly
The Novaflex Group
Annette Doyle
Laura Drahn
U.S. Silica Co.
Cindy Dyrda
Meyer Tool & Manufacturing, Inc.
Cynthia Farrer
Ingersoll Rand
Dale Foerster
Starr Manufacturing
Cynthia Fowle
LORD Corporation
Rosalind Fox
John Deere Turf Care
Elin Gabriel
Natalie Genova
Honeywell International
Wendy Gifford
SC Johnson
Sharron Gilbert
Septimatech Group Inc.
Karen Gilgenbach
Airgas USA, LLC
Arlene Gonzalez
NCI Group, Inc.
Rebecca Guinn
Deere & Company
Kelly Hagedorn
Kifco, Inc.
Michelle Helm
HOERBIGER Corporation of America
Erika Hendricksen
The Dow Chemical Company
Anne Herman
Mine Safety Appliances Company
Jan Herschkowitz
PRL, Inc.
Amber Hinkle
Bayer MaterialScience LLC
Collie Hutter
Click Bond, Inc.
Martina Igel
Mary Isbister
GenMet Corp.
Brandy Johnson
Babcock & Wilcox Power Generation Group, Inc.
Kellie Johnson
ACE Clearwater Enterprises
Claire Jones Barboni
HOERBIGER Corporation of America
Pamela Kan
Bishop-Wisecarver Corporation
Valerie Kelso
Steinwall, Inc.
Tracy Kemp
Ingersoll Rand
Sherry Knipp
John Deere Engine Works
Christine Kurek
Air Products
Kathy Lamb
ADCO Products, Inc.
Alexie Lee
Teresa Lee
NCI Group, Inc.
Susan Lewis
The Dow Chemical Company
Amalie Lyday
Walex Products Company, Inc.
Kathryn Lyublanovits
ConMed Linvatec
Heather Macholan
Behlen Manufacturing Co.
Darlene Miller
PERMAC Industries
Tammie Nelson
Annette Norris
Enterprise Group
Heather Olson
Linda Palladino
Schneider Packaging Equipment Company, Inc.
Nina Pathy
AGCO Corporation
Lisa Pauley
Ball Corporation
Rona Pepmeier
Rolls-Royce plc
Carol Peters
A.O. Smith Water Products Company
Charlotte Pett
HOERBIGER Corporation of America
Kelley Platt
Thomas Built Buses
Angela Ramsey
Central Florida Box Corporation
Karen Randall
Westinghouse Electric LLC
Kathryn Raymond
ConMed Linvatec
Colleen Reiter
MillerCoors LLC
Myrna Reyes
Becky Rieger
Braun Northwest, Inc.
Charmaine Riggins
LORD Corporation
Lisa Rimpf
Babcock & Wilcox
Sheila Rogers
Kimberly Rosenberry
Miltec UV
Liz Russell
Stella-Jones Corporation
Mary Pat Salomone
Babcock & Wilcox
Jan Santerre
Joan Schork
Air Products
Donna Shinkunas
HOERBIGER Corporation of America
Dana Smith
Spirit AeroSystems Inc.
Erikka Storch
Ohio Valley Steel Company
Jacki Strauss
Paulsboro Refining Company
Betsy Sundalius
Metalist International Incorporated
Barb Suski
Bison Gear & Engineering
Gretchen Swain
Air Products
Mena Tazegul
John Deere Engine Works
Athena Theodorakis
LORD Corporation
Ngoc Kim Tran
HOERBIGER Corporation of America
Dollie Unger
HOERBIGER Corporation of America
Tana Utley
Caterpillar Inc.
Anna Wald
Wyoming Machine, Inc.
Noelle Walsh
The Dow Chemical Company
Barbara Walz
Tri-State Generation and Transmission Association
Sandra Westlund-Deenihan
Quality Float Works, Inc.
Karen Wilder
The Schwan Food Company
Ellen Williams
BP plc
Racquel Willis
Governair, LLC
Lisa Witte
Thermo Fisher Scientific

EPAThe Environmental Protection Agency has recently solidified a new Clean Air Act edit/amendment/ which changes the standards for boilers and incinerators, as well as announced revisions to the Non-Hazardous Secondary Materials Rule. The EPA said it passed the Clean Air Act amendments to address only those boilers that emit the most pollution, which they estimate as being less than 1% of about 1.5 million operational boilers in the U.S.

The updated Non-Hazardous Secondary Materials rules will reportedly define more clearly the laws regarding the types of secondary materials that are considered non-waste fuels. As reported by the American Metal Market, the latest revisions will primarily affect those businesses recycling scrap tires.

Industry professionals been anticipating the updates for some time, and the changes were expected to go through by the end of 2012. Although somewhat divisive in the past, the latest set of revisions from the EPA will have little if any impact on scrap metal recyclers, according to officials within the company.