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Greetings!

 

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

 

In this issue:
Bonner hopes to impact UA campuses, state economics
Mobile government bodies endorse $800,000 of incentives for agri-chemical company
Steel, export coal, container volume driving Alabama State Port Authority's gains
Alabama biotech firms attract global interest at conference
Gulf Coast States Get Creative With BP Oil Spill Money
High-tech experts to come together for cyber security summit next month
Alabama's economy revving back up, could be top 10 for growth
ESCC to focus on economic development during June 11 breakfast

 


Bonner hopes to impact UA campuses, state economics
By Katherine Owen
May 29, 2013 

Following an announcement on May 23 about his plans to resign from his congressional office to take a position with The University of Alabama System, U.S. Rep. Josiah "Jo" Bonner, R-Ala., said he has a wealth of ideas for his new position but first wants to learn from those already in the system's office.

 

Starting August 16, Bonner will assume the position of vice chancellor of government relations and economic development with the UA system. Kellee Reinhart, vice chancellor for system relations, said the position was established from the outgrowth and reorganization of the government relations branch of the system under Bill Jones, the recently retired director of the government relations initiative. Bonner's official salary is unknown but will be determined closer to his start date, Reinhart said.

 

"First of all, I'm going to look to Dr. Robert Witt (chancellor of the UA system) and the other people in the system's office for guidance," Bonner said. "And I want to touch base with Bill Jones. He has been the director of the government relations branch for many years and did a great job with that. He'll have a wealth of knowledge about that aspect of this job."

 

Bonner said he has already discussed the potential of his position with Witt and said he sees economic development playing a much larger role than before with the government relations branch.

 

 

more...

 

[Crimson White


 


Mobile government bodies endorse $800,000 of incentives for agri-chemical company
By John Sharp | jsharp@al.com 
on May 28, 2013 

MOBILE, Alabama - An extra $800,000 in local incentives for the development of an agri-chemical plant were approved today by the Mobile City Council and Mobile County Commissioners.

The commissioners approved $500,000 incentives for German-based Bayer CropScience to build a $396 million global herbicide production facility aimed at creating an herbicide to combat glyphosate-resistant weeds. The project will be built within an industrialized area along Rangeline Road.

 

The council also voted on its own incentive package: $300,000.

 

"I think it's a good project that creates the type of high paying, technical jobs that we've been focused on for the last eight years," City Attorney Larry Wettermark said.

 

more...

 



Steel, export coal, container volume driving Alabama State Port Authority's gains
By Kelli Dugan | kdugan@al.com 
on May 28, 2013

MOBILE, Alabama - Anyone questioning the wisdom of the Alabama State Port Authority's $700 million capital investment in its public terminals alongside an array of other improvements since 2005 received a very public - and promising - answer Tuesday.

 

Standard & Poor's upgraded the authority's bond rating from BBB+ to A-, citing a robust performance and indicating confidence the Port of Mobile will remain successful in maintaining increased financial margins.

"Other good indicators are (that) our tonnage is up in steel, export coal and containers," said Judith Adams, the Mobile authority's spokeswoman.

 

Indeed, total tonnage - excluding containers - at the Alabama State Port Authority's public terminals increased nearly 2 percent from 25.09 million tons in 2011 to 25.57 million tons in 2012.



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Alabama biotech firms attract global interest at conference
Alan Alexander
Editorial intern-Birmingham Business Journal

May 28, 2013

 

In last week's print edition, I took a look at Alabama's efforts to become a hot spot for biotechnology.

 

One thing mentioned by several sources was the changing perception of Alabama's economy - with the state becoming increasingly known for its life science savvy in addition to its traditional status in heavy manufacturing.

 

The recent Biotechnology Industry Organization international convention, held in Chicago in late April, provides a good look at that changing perception. The global event attracted more than 15,000 people and the biggest names in biotech to see what companies have been developing over the past year.

 

With 50 organizations contributing to its exhibition pavilion, Alabama showed up in force. And the efforts paid off.


more...

 

 


 


 


Gulf Coast States Get Creative With BP Oil Spill Money
Debbie Elliott
May 28, 2013

Gulf Coast states are lining up to spend $1 billion from BP on coastal restoration. The money is part of BP's legal responsibility to restore the Gulf of Mexico's natural resources in the aftermath of the worst oil disaster in U.S. history.

 

But the nature of some of the state projects, including boat ramps and a beachfront hotel, is raising questions about just what counts as coastal restoration.

 

Earlier this month, Alabama's Gov. Robert Bentley stood on a sugar white state park beach to announce plans for an $85 million lodge and conference center. The event had all the trappings of an economic development announcement. State lawmakers, local mayors and business owners were all smiles to hear that the Legislature had finally, after years of stalemate, given the go-ahead for a hotel on state park property near Gulf Shores, Ala. The state can contract with private companies to build and run the facility. What pushed the hotel through this year, as noted by Lt. Gov. Kay Ivey, is that BP is footing the bill.

 

"Without costing the taxpayers a dime," Ivey said at the announcement earlier this month.

 

All five Gulf states are sharing in the $1 billion from BP. It's a down payment on what the oil giant will be forced to pay under a lengthy process called Natural Resources Damage Assessment, intended to restore the Gulf ecosystem to the condition it was in before the 2010 oil spill.


more...

 

[NPR]

 

 


 


 



High-tech experts to come together for cyber security summit next month (video)
By Lucy Berry | lberry@al.com 
on May 28, 2013

HUNTSVILLE, Alabama - Months after President Barack Obama issued an executive order to strengthen cyber security on 18 areas of critical U.S. infrastructure, the North Alabama Chapter of the Information Systems Security Association and Cyber Huntsville are teaming up to hold a cyber security summit June 6 at the Von Braun Center.

 

Officials met outside the Chamber of Commerce of Huntsville/Madison County on Tuesday morning to announce the fifth-annual "Lean Six Cyber: Continuous Improvement Across All Cyber Domains" event. The all-day summit will include management and technical presentations, industry speakers and exhibits by security vendors.

 

Cyber security, a multi-billion dollar business, is a major national and local topic, forcing companies to address the issue as attacks become more severe and frequent. About 550 people are expected to attend this year's summit, which Chairman Jason Cuneo said offers opportunities for networking, showcase solutions and new skills training.


more....

 

[al.com]

 

 

 


 


 

Alabama's economy revving back up, could be top 10 for growth
By Alex Walsh | awalsh@al.com 
on May 28, 201

Alabama may be headed for some economic growth, according to the latest calculations of the Philadelphia Fed. 

 

Each month, the Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia collects data from several sources to estimate future growth for each state's economy. This growth measure, called the "leading index," combines trends in housing, labor, and productivity to predict activity over the next six months.

Alabama's leading index showed positive over a stretch of several months at the end of 2012, then slowed in January and February. Its latest measure is once again positive, and in fact ranks Alabama as potentially the tenth-fastest growing economy over the next six months.

Two trends have improved Alabama's outlook locally: housing permits picked up in April, and first-time claims of unemployment insurance continued to slide. 


more...

 


 


 

ESCC to focus on economic development during June 11 breakfast
By AL.com and Press-Register staff 
May 28, 2013 

DAPHNE, Alabama -- The Eastern Shore Chamber of Commerce Eggs N' Issues breakfast June 11 will focus on "Economic Development in the Area" with Buddy Rice, public relations and marketing manager for the Mobile Airport Authority.

 

The meeting will be held at 8:30 a.m. at Daphne United Methodist Church.

Rice's presentation will focus on strategies to better work together to promote the Eastern Shore as well as Mobile. He will also provide ideas of how to better utilize the Mobile Airport and Airbus.

more...


 





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