Here is today's summary of economic development news, a free service of the Economic Development Partnership of Alabama, representing Alabama's private sector investment in economic development. If you enjoy NewsFlash, thank an EDPA Partner.
House passes economic development bills
12:17 PM, Feb. 9, 2012 |
Huntsville's Toyota engine plant awaits word on impact from plan to increase Highlander output in Indiana
Published: Thursday, February 09, 2012, 11:15 AM Updated: Thursday, February 09, 2012, 11:50 AM
By Marian Accardi, The Huntsville Times The Huntsville Times
HUNTSVILLE, Alabama -- Toyota said it will end production of the Highlander mid-size SUV in Japan by late next year, and, at the same time, increase output of the vehicle in Princeton, Ind. The move is expected to create about 400 new jobs at Toyota Motor Manufacturing Indiana.
Officials with Toyota's engine plant in Huntsville are waiting to find out what the Indiana facility expansion means for the plant here.
Toyota Motor Manufacturing Alabama in North Huntsville Industrial Park produces four-cylinder engines for the Highlander, which is assembled at the Indiana plant, said spokeswoman Tina Gess. "As of right now, Toyota is currently studying the impact on its two engine plants in North America" -- in Huntsville and Toyota Motor Manufacturing West Virginia in Buffalo, W.V., Gess said.
The Huntsville plant started building four-cylinder engines last September.
Those engines are also installed in the Camry, RAV4, Sienna and Venza vehicles. The plant also produces V-6 and V-8 engines for Tacoma and Tundra pickup trucks and Sequoia sport utility vehicles.
Last year, the Huntsville plant built 231,722 engines: 47,572 four cylinders, 81,645 V-6 and 102,505 V-8.
House approves incentives package
12:50 AM, Feb. 9, 2012 | Written by Brian Lyman
BAE Systems in Anniston to refurbish armored vehicles for Iraqi military
Published: Thursday, February 09, 2012, 9:48 AM Updated: Thursday, February 09, 2012, 9:58 AM
BIRMINGHAM, Alabama -- Defense contractor BAE Systems said it is teaming with the Anniston Army Depot to refurbish 440 armored personnel carriers for duty in Iraq through a foreign military sales contract worth more than $31 million.
The work on the M113 vehicles includes replacing old and damaged equipment with updated components and restoring the vehicles to "fully mission capable" condition.
"The M113 refurbishment will give the Iraqi Army a capability which is relevant to a variety of threat environments," Joe McCarthy, vice president and general manager of combat vehicles at BAE Systems, said in a statement. "We have been exporting and doing upgrade work on M113s for decades. This new work builds upon our great partnership with Anniston Army Depot."
The refurbishment work will be completed by April 2012 and is being performed at the company's Anniston facility
Thomasville mayor's push for growth helps solve Golden Dragon conundrum
Published: Wednesday, February 08, 2012, 5:13 PM Updated: Wednesday, February 08, 2012, 5:17 PM
By Dan Murtaugh, Press-Register Press-Register
MOBILE, Alabama -- Last year, shortly after Chinese copper giant Golden Dragon selected a 50-acre site in Thomasville for a copper tubing factory, Mayor Sheldon Day began looking for larger site for future industrial development.
Little did he know that the 280-acre site he found, just a few miles outside Thomasville's city limits, would help save the $100 million copper project from fleeing the area.
Late last year, Golden Dragon officials said their plans for future expansions had outgrown the Thomasville site, and they needed something three times as big.
"We said, 'Here's one right here,'" Day said. "One of the guys in the room said he was shocked I was able to pull a site right out of my back pocket."
This week, the company said that it would locate the facility at the second site, which is near Pine Hill in Wilcox County, aided by an incentives package valued at $200 million by state officials.
The operation will initially employ 300 people.