setting the rocord straight==comments...

setting the rocord straight==comments removed on gazette forum??

Posted in the Emporia Forum


United States

#1 Nov 11, 2011
Setting the record straight
Kent Heermann President, Regional Development Association
Wednesday, November 9, 2011

■Several weeks ago on the editorial page of the Emporia Gazette was an article concerning economic development growth and “low paying” manufacturing jobs. It is not the first time that this author has asserted this opinion.

However, that opinion has absolutely no basis in fact. At the Regional Development Association of East Central Kansas (RDA) office we maintain and update data on employment and salaries by industry sector. One of our primary sources of on-line data is the KU Institute for Policy and Social Research.

If you go to their website www/ this is a data link to the U.S. Census Bureau “County Business Patterns”. The employment data for 1998 and 2009 for Lyon County, Kansas, was analyzed. Here are the facts:

•The average salary for private sector employment in 1998 for Lyon County was as follows:
•Average of all jobs -$21,644
•Manufacturing employment average salary -$26,580
•Percent of manufacturing jobs to total workforce 43%
•The average salary for private sector employment in 2009 for Lyon County, Kansas, was as follows:
•Average of all jobs -$27,041
•Manufacturing -$37,814
•Percent of manufacturing jobs to total workforce 25%
The only employment industries with higher annual salaries than manufacturing are utilities and information (which is the telecommunications industry). Those employment levels did not grow.

Here is an interesting fact: in 1998 there were 6,431 manufacturing jobs in Lyon County, and then in 2009 the number of manufacturing jobs had declined to 3,008. However, the average annualized salaries have increased from $26,580 in 1998 to $37,814 in 2009.

The trend is that low-skilled and low-wage manufacturing jobs are gravitating to the low-cost labor markets. The higher-skilled and high-paying jobs in some instances are staying in the USA or “reshoring” to the USA.

A promising trend that manufacturing will continue to return to the U.S. is in a recent report issued in August 2011 by the Boston Consulting Group, entitled “Made in America, Again Why manufacturing will return to the U.S.” In their executive summary, the Boston Consulting Group stated the following:

“China’s overwhelming manufacturing cost advantage over the U.S. is shrinking fast. Within five years, a Boston Consulting Group analysis concludes, rising Chinese wages, higher U.S. productivity, a weaker dollar, and other factors will virtually close the cost gap between the U.S. and China for many goods consumed in North America.”

In a recent New York Times article dated October 12, 2011, entitled “A Company Grows and Builds a Plant Back in the USA”, they interviewed Paul Fichter, founder of the Taphandles, which produces beer marketing products for breweries. His primary reasons for bringing back the manufacturing of their products to the USA was labor costs and logistics costs.

Emporia and Lyon County are well positioned to continue to grow their manufacturing base. We need the local workforce to increase their skill levels. Manufacturing is not a “blue collar” lunch bucket occupation. Four-year degrees are required in engineering, chemistry, marketing, accounting, management and business; two-year diplomas in manufacturing technology with expertise in commercial wiring, HVAC systems, programmable logic controls (PLC’s), and computer numeric controls (CNC) for machining. If a future employee wants to be competitive in today’s job market, then they need to attend post-secondary institutions such as Emporia State University and the Flint Hills Technical College to obtain competitive skills.

Emporia continues to position itself to be ready to be competitive with “on-shoring” and Kansas are just beginning to see the era of growth and expansion.

United States

#2 Nov 11, 2011
you couldnt handle, people who are actually smarter that you making comments about you dumb ass phoney store

Since: Aug 11

Severy, KS

#4 Nov 11, 2011
Here are the comments up to last night:

United States

#5 Nov 11, 2011
thanks Randy, I looks for them and could not find them anywhere. this isnt the first time that slugs have gotten the gazette to drop the forums for someone.

Since: Aug 11

Severy, KS

#6 Nov 12, 2011
Yeah it's sad how far downhill the Gazette has gone. William Allen White has probably been rolling over in his grave so much lately he looks like a pretzel. He fought for free speech, and now Mr. Walker is denying everyone the right to say what they feel. His policy of wanting to verify people is ridiculous. I have looked and am unable to find a single other newspaper in this entire country that demands you give them your personal information if you would like to post "anonymously".
Sure, Mr. Walker, this might be "your newspaper" and you are free to censor whoever you want with it, but this is not your town, and you are not free to trample the first amendment rights of the people in it. You, Mr. Walker are protected by the first amendment more than the average man, but yet you cower in the corner when it comes to exercising your rights. Do you really think the RDA can do anything to you if you don't delete posts that are negative towards them? They might not like it, but who cares? Fuck them. Grow a pair of balls and do what is right by our community, not just what your friends tell you to do. Stop being a tool. All the negativity in this town towards you and your "newspaper" was brought on by you and only you. And only you can make it right.


“RelaxEverythingW illBeAllright”

Since: Mar 11

Derby, KS

#7 Nov 12, 2011
The article left out all the growth in Emporia's public sector jobs since the conception of the RDA. You have that RDA Director job that rakes in well over 100K per year. And he also has a secretary who is paid more than any private sector secretaries ever earned in this town. Then there are all those well dressed smiling faces down at the convention and visitors bureau. What's with "Main Street"? Isn't that the job of the Chamber of Commerce or are all those public sector employees too busy kissing each others arses to worry about Emporia's main streets?

They all take money from citizens and put it into their own purses, but how much does each one get after they get done divvying up the booty? Do some get more than others and if so, why? Does it have anything to do with family ties or who's screwing whom?

It seems that as long as the CVB, Chamber of Commerce, Main Street, and RDA hands some of that loot over to the local paper and radio, they can do no wrong. When was the last time the local rag did an in depth story exposing the crooked dealings of the public sector industry in this community? Have they ever asked where all that bedroom tax money goes? How about all that sales tax money? How is it being spent?

The only time the Gazette printed anything negative about the CVB's spending was when the CVB spent $10K on a one time ad in the "O". I suspect that Ashley was pissed that she didn't get that money to spend on something to impress the people that her newspaper is supposed to be keeping a critical eye on. PUBLIC SECTOR ENTERPRISES!

The Emporia Gazette has become a joke. Feel good stories about the crooks who rob us blind and pulling down public comments that offend the crooks in exchange for advertising dollars makes the newspaper reporter nothing more than an extortionist.

Since: Aug 11

Wimberley, TX

#8 Nov 14, 2011
It's strange how negative comments about Fanestils and Mr. Smoots have never been taken down, but as soon as something negative towards the RDA or it's members is said, The Emporia Gazette springs into action. It's only a matter of time before the comments about the Chevy Volt being a piece of shit get removed.

Dallas, TX

#9 Nov 14, 2011
So true Randy. Right now you can be sure that the final plans are being put together to make sure smooths will get everything he wants, even if fema does not approve the peoples money for his sorry ass. I still think the ba$turd should build it on his own land, hell he has 70 acres right beside his house. damn sure wish I had run for city commissioner, but it would still be 1 against 4, and then zimmerman makes the final call , It aint suppose to work that way folks!!!!!!!

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