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.
Support business for ThyssenKrupp AG to add 68 new jobs
Published: Friday, May 11, 2012, 5:28 AM
MOBILE, Alabama -- A new support business for the stainless steel operation at ThyssenKrupp AG's local mill will provide an estimated 68 new jobs paying an average of $56,761 a year, officials said Thursday.
Tube City IMS, based in Glassport, Pa., plans to spend just over $23 million to build and equip a shop at the ThyssenKrupp complex in Calvert, according to Claudia Zimmermann of the Mobile Area Chamber of Commerce. The shop is expected to be in operation by this fall, she said.
The Mobile County Industrial Development Authority voted to give Tube City sales and property tax breaks worth about $1.6 million over 10 years. The company will still pay an estimated $13.9 million in ad valorem taxes for education and other non-exempted taxes over the abatement's 20 impact years, Zimmerman said.
Tube City IMS is a leading provider of on-site, industrial mill services for steelmakers around the world, according to its website. At the TK site, the company will sort and process scrap metal, putting together recipes for certain grades of stainless and removing slag that will once again become scrap, Zimmermann said.
ThyssenKrupp's $5 billion Alabama complex on the Mobile-Washington county line, is shared by both stainless and carbon steel units. Finland's Outokumpu Oyj is working to purchase the smaller stainless operation, which was renamed Inoxum in anticipation of the sale. The deal with Outokumpu would make that company the world's largest stainless steel maker. Barring any regulatory problems, the deal is expected to be complete by the end of the year.
Member of Export-Import Bank's board speaks at World Trade Day event in Huntsville
Published: Thursday, May 10, 2012, 5:16 PM Updated: Thursday, May 10, 2012, 5:38 PM
HUNTSVILLE, Alabama -- Sean Mulvaney, a member of the board of directors of the Export-Import Bank of the United States, said trade is a "pathway to prosperity," though only 1 percent of the nation's 30 million companies are involved in exporting.
"That's a very small number," Mulvaney said today in his speech at the annual World Trade Day celebration in Huntsville. "We can and must do better going forward."
Of the firms that do sell their products or services abroad, 58 percent of them export only to one market, according to Mulvaney, a presidential appointee who was sworn in last June.
President Obama's National Export Initiative has set "an aggressive goal" of doubling U.S. exports over a five-year period, he said. The initiative - announced in the president's 2010 State of the Union address - calls for increasing exports from $1.58 trillion in 2009 to $3.15 trillion by the end of 2014.
Among the benefits for small businesses that export their goods or services: adding or maintaining jobs and reducing risk by not having to rely solely on domestic sales, he said.
Trade, which supports 38 million U.S. jobs, is one of "the ingredients for continued economic success in the 21st century," Mulvaney said.
Washington County Business Park breaks ground Friday
Published: Thursday, May 10, 2012, 4:56 PM Updated: Thursday, May 10, 2012, 5:12 PM
Washington County Business Park plans to break ground Friday, complete with a freshly poured slab for its first building on 20-acre Phase 1, and has landed its first two tenants, officials said.
Opening this summer, the park will offer a variety of rental suites for commercial, retail, service and manufacturing facilities, including warehouses with offices and showrooms, office suites and storage units. It's being developed by Dunn Real Estate and Goldin Materials.
A ceremony for the park will be held at 10 a.m. Friday at 4299 U.S. 43 in McIntosh.
Spaces for lease will range in size from 1,500 to 18,000 square feet, with roll-up warehouse doors and concrete paving, and can be custom-designed to fit the needs of the tenant. Long- and short-term leases and land sales will be offered, according to Ryan Goldin, vice president of Goldin Materials.
He would not identify the first two tenants, but said one of the companies has purchased land in the park and plans to build its own building, Goldin said.
"Until we actually seal the deal, we can't identify them," Goldin said. "They're basically nationally known companies, both are in the Mobile area and are moving into Washington County."
The developers have an option to expand the park, but for now want to concentrate on the first 20 acres, Goldin said.
A planned 12,000-square-foot building will have two 3,000-square-foot suites at either end and four interior units of 1,500 square feet, Goldin said. At least two of the units will be turn-key ready when the building opens, he said.
Lawmakers want meeting with Air Force on future of C-130s in 908th Airlift Wing
Roby, others oppose plan to retire seven C-130s
2:07 AM, May. 11, 2012 |
WASHINGTON - A defense bill that passed a key House committee Thursday includes language by Rep. Martha Roby requiring that the Air Force justify its plan to retire all seven C-130 cargo planes based in Montgomery.
The Air Force said it will retire all seven C-130s used by the Air Force Reserve's 908th Airlift Wing in 2014. If approved by Congress, that plan could jeopardize 500-700 jobs at Maxwell-Gunter Air Force Base, where the unit is based, and leave the 908th Airlift Wing without a mission.
Roby and the rest of the Alabama delegation oppose mothballing the C-130s.
"There will not be any changes made without a full accounting," Roby said. "I don't want to cause any unneeded stress to our military families about unknown possibilities at this point in time."
The Montgomery Republican, a member of the House Armed Services Committee, said her proposal seeks clarification about the ultimate fate of the cargo planes because the Air Force keeps changing its mind.
"First we were told, 'OK, we're going to retire certain C-130s based on their age.' Next thing we know, they're talking about moving the C-130s from the 908th to another part of the country," she said. "I am not trying to tie the hands of our commanders that are in position to make decisions. I'm just trying to make sure ... this is the best decision."
The geography of U.S. manufacturing
Posted by Brad Plumerat 10:35 AM ET, 05/09/2012TheWashingtonPost
Since 2010, manufacturing jobs have made a very modest comeback in the United States - although not nearly enough to reverse a long, three-decade slide. (Between 1979 and 2010, the U.S. economy lost 7.9 million manufacturing jobs; since then, it's gained just 350,000.)
So what jobs still remain? The Brookings Institution has a fascinating new report on the geography of U.S. manufacturing jobs that delves into this topic, and a few charts stand out. First, here's a look at the composition of U.S. manufacturing jobs, as of 2010. Note that food manufacturing has become the biggest single sector in terms of jobs:
Relationships that work
May 11, 2012 - Last Friday, we held our Community Partners (CP) Roundtable. A bi-annual event, this provides a chance to examine current economic development issues and is a forum for the exchange of ideas between our 21 Community Partners.
The first presenter, David Thornell, President and CEO of C3 of Northwest Alabama Economic Development Alliance, presented on work that EDPA has done with his group to create a strategic plan based on the statewide strategic plan for economic development, Accelerate Alabama. This is a great case study for the EDPA Community Partner program, as it embodies all that we believed the CP program could accomplish.
Our work with C3 has been to facilitate the creation of a plan centered around the three "R's" of Accelerate Alabama - Recruitment, Retention, and Renewal. And C3 has a good start on that, with participation from K-12, the local two-year college, local mayors, and others. There is a planning "war room" and there is a workable strategic plan spread over a few pages, not volumes.
The C3 example is an interesting one: Three counties, Marion, Lamar and Fayette, combined resources in the fall of 2012 to create an economic development alliance to market the assets of the area. Within the three counties are 17 cities. And the area is the beneficiary of I-22, the new interstate highway linking Birmingham and Memphis. So the region is poised to capitalize on this important transportation route, which will bring new opportunities. And although the interstate runs through only Marion County, the region understands its broader benefit.
Please feel free to forward along to someone who can use it by clicking on the "I'd like to forward this to a contact" link below the green bar.
Note also, that you can now make changes to your e-mail address and contact information through the link at the bottom.
As always, if you have news or suggestions, please forward them along to me.
Enjoy the day,
Wendy Wallace Johnson