Stephen Barlas

Contributing Writer
Stephen Barlas is a freelance writer that has more than 30 years of experience covering Congress, the White House, and the many regulatory agencies found in Washington, D.C. He has covered issues affecting the metal fabricating industry for The FABRICATOR for more than a decade.

OSHA publishes final silica rule

April 11, 2016

By:

Shops that have abrasive blasting capabilities need to be aware that a new OSHA rule involving worker exposure to crystalline silica particles has been published.

Continue Reading

Major energy bill includes manufacturing provision

February 12, 2016

By:

Under the provision, Industrial Assessment Centers would be able to do more than advise manufacturers.

Continue Reading

New law enhances manufacturers’ tax benefits

January 21, 2016

By:

Congress finally provides permanent approval for Section 179 expensing deduction and bonus depreciation laws.

Continue Reading

Congress finally commits to infrastructure investment

December 9, 2015

By:

The recently approved highway bill increases domestic content and funding for railway cars.

Continue Reading

Manufacturers want Congress to restrain EPA on ozone

October 22, 2015

By:

It may be an uphill battle as the EPA reduces the limits of nitrogen oxides and volatile organic compounds that manufacturers can release into the atmosphere.

Continue Reading

Cranking out complex drawings on a supercomputer?

August 7, 2015

By:

Proposed legislation might make it possible for manufacturers to access big-data capabilities at national labs.

Continue Reading

More manufacturing institutes on the agenda?

June 4, 2015

By:

President Obama wants $150 million to expand innovation network.

Continue Reading

Manufacturers push hard for trade promotion authority

May 11, 2015

By:

Mechanism to protect investors outside the purview of U.S. courts proves to be an issue of concern for those that oppose the Trans-Pacific Partnership trade agreement.

Continue Reading

Machining association chips away at ozone proposal

April 2, 2015

By:

The Precision Machined Products Association believes metal manufacturing operations will struggle to meet proposed EPA ozone standards.

Continue Reading

EPA targets aerospace segment

March 11, 2015

By:

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) proposed in February to tighten up air emission standards for aerospace manufacturing and fabrication facilities. The agency said it initially surveyed 1,300 facilities nationwide that potentially could emit hazardous air pollutants (HAPs); all of these...

Continue Reading

Tax break for manufacturers up in the air

March 10, 2015

By:

Prospects for Senate passage of a bill establishing a permanent expensing allowance for capital equipment are dicey. The House passed the America's Small Business Tax Relief Act of 2015 (H.R. 636) in February with all but one Republican voting for it and 33 Democrats adding their support. Now...

Continue Reading

Watch where those spent solvents go

February 5, 2015

By:

The Environmental Protection Agency has finally enacted its rulemaking that affects metal manufacturers that have to recycle or dispose of spent solvents.

Continue Reading

Congress approves manufacturing program--with an asterisk

January 9, 2015

By:

Congress fulfilled President Barack Obama's wish to set up a network of manufacturing innovation centers across the U.S., but there is a catch: The effort won't have its own budget. The endeavor will have to be funded through existing budgets in the Department of Energy and the Pentagon.

Continue Reading

Manufacturing communities program ready for second round

December 12, 2014

By:

The U.S. Department of Commerce wants to reach out to more communities in an effort to boost the manufacturing economy.

Continue Reading

EPA pushes for new ozone regulation

December 12, 2014

By:

The Environmental Protection agency wants to reduce ozone-causing emissions levels even though the current regulations haven't been fully put into effect.

Continue Reading