The state of the manufacturing industry and how to get needed talent was on the mind of Congressman Mike Bishop and management of a newly expanded auto supplier in Brighton.

TG Fluid Systems is one of the fastest growing subsidiaries of automotive supplier Toyoda Gosei. They specialize in functional components for fuel tank systems and supply mainly to Toyota Motors, but are approved to ship to most OEMs, including the Big Three. Wednesday afternoon they invited United States Representative Mike Bishop to their Brighton plant in celebration of completing an $11-million expansion project. He complemented TG for being able to expand and stay in the community, saying that it is a testament to the economy overall. He said that employers now feel they can grow and invest in their own facilities is a stark difference from what he saw when he first took office 3 years ago.

The expansion has added 60,000 square feet of space to the now 240,000 square foot facility that will consolidate all 3 of TG Fluid’s Livingston County locations. It will allow the company to hire 35 new employees over the next 3 years. The problem, recognized by management and Bishop alike, comes in finding trained and dependable workers. Bishop said that one thing he hears everywhere he goes is that talented employees are difficult to find. He suggested that there needs to be a greater encouragement for vocational training and better collaboration between training facilities like community college or high school, and the employers. Bishop noted that many manufacturing jobs are going unfilled and that if our economy is going to expand, we need to do a better job bringing up young workers to fill those spots. (MK)