Connecticut, Vermont, New Hampshire, Maine, Massachusetts and Rhode Island have received a joint grant of $1.5 million from the U.S. Department of Defense’s Office of Economic Adjustment to create the New England Regional Defense Industry Collaboration.
Over the next 18 months, the funding will be used by the organization to coordinate the growth of defense-related businesses across the six-state New England region. The primary goals will be to aid small and midsize businesses in meeting new cybersecurity requirements for businesses participating in the defense industry supply chain, as well as to create a trusted supplier network that will make it easier for large defense contractors to locate smaller suppliers that are able to meet their production, certification and process requirements.
“This new multistate collaboration will advance the New England defense industry and help Connecticut’s small and medium-sized companies continue to grow and compete,” said Gov. Dannel Malloy. “This complements the many steps my administration has taken to strengthen Connecticut’s defense industry – from our historic partnerships with United Technologies, Sikorsky, and Electric Boat, to our cutting-edge supply chain companies.”
“Today’s announcement is a testament to the strength of Connecticut’s defense industry,” members of Connecticut’s Congressional delegation said in a joint statement. “This new collaboration with the New England region will help small and medium-sized businesses on the defense supply chain grow and succeed. We will continue to support these important federal efforts that benefit our local economies, create jobs and strengthen our national security.”
The efforts to pursue funding to create a region-wide defense assistance organization have been led by a steering committee that includes representative defense businesses with operations in the region as well as state economic development leaders.