The sketchiness of “economic development”

February 13, 2018

By Josh Moon
Alabama Political Reporter

Let’s be honest, governing well is hard.

So hard, in fact, that sometime in the past, most Alabama politicians quit trying. And so, our people found an easier way to make taxpayers at least believe that they’re doing some good.

Economic development.

Essentially, the idea is this: We pay companies to locate here through a complex series of straight cash, training programs, land gifts, tax abatements and tax deferments. These companies accept these ludicrous gifts and in exchange dole out … jobs to people so the company can continue (hopefully) turning a profit.

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Ivey announces grant to Calhoun College Huntsville Hospital Nursing lab

February 13, 2018

By Brandon Moseley
Alabama Political Reporter

Alabama Gov. Kay Ivey announced a grant to assist Huntsville Hospital to build a nursing simulation lab at Calhoun College’s Huntsville campus on Friday.

“Today, I was thrilled to announce that I have awarded a $1 million grant to [Huntsville Hospital] to partner with [Calhoun College] to construct a nursing simulation lab at their Calhoun-Huntsville campus,” Ivey said on Twitter. “Great example of how collaborative efforts create a lasting impact for years to come.”

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Under guise of economic development, legislation would open door for public officials to lobby government

January 29, 2018

By Bill Britt
Alabama Political Reporter

New legislation in the Alabama House of Representatives would alter the definition of lobbyist and lobbying in such a way as to open the floodgates for public officials to use their office for personal gain under the guise of economic development.

Behind HB317 is Republican Commerce Secretary Greg Canfield, who most recently appeared as a witness before a Montgomery County special grand jury investigating potential public corruption in an economic development deal during former Gov. Robert Bentley’s administration.

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Toyota and Mazda to build massive new auto manufacturing plant in Limestone County

January 11, 2018

By Brandon Moseley
Alabama Political Reporter

Wednesday, Toyota and Mazda announced that they were building a joint manufacturing plant at a site in Limestone County.

Alabama Gov. Kay Ivey said, “Today is indeed a great day in the state of Alabama.”

“Growing businesses and creating opportunities for the people of Alabama is a process. I pledge to increase opportunities for the people of Alabama today and for generations to come. I am honored to announce that Toyota and Mazda has selected Alabama as home of their new production plant.”

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Kimber to open firearms manufacturing facility in Troy

January 11, 2018

By Brandon Moseley
Alabama Political Reporter

Alabama Gov. Kay Ivey announced during her Tuesday’s State of the State speech that Kimber Manufacturing Inc., a leading U.S. firearms manufacturer, has finalized plans to open a production facility in Troy, Alabama, where it will create 366 jobs and invest $38 million into the local economy over the next five years.

“News of our economic successes seem to be a daily occurrence,” Gov. Ivey said. “In fact, I am proud to announce this evening that Kimber Firearms will build a $38 million dollar production facility in Troy, bringing with it 366 new jobs! These are good, high-paying jobs, and will enable more of our citizens to provide for their families while taking part in the rich history of the Second Amendment. We are proud and honored to welcome Kimber to Alabama! This announcement and countless others like it make one thing clear: what we are doing is working, and as a result, the people of Alabama are working and providing for their families.”

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Opinion | Rural prosperity: Key to Alabama’s future

January 10, 2018

By John McMillan
Agriculture and Industries Commissioner

“Rural Prosperity,” the title of a just-released report by the Trump Administration, comes at a most opportune time when more and more Americans and Alabamians are enjoying a rapidly growing economy. However, a segment of our nation and state are being left out of the rising economic tide, and that is many of our rural communities.

President Trump and U.S. Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue deserve tremendous credit for launching the study and issuing this critical report that focuses with laser-like precision on how to build a lasting foundation of prosperity in areas long overlooked.

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BOCAR Group breaks ground on new plant in Huntsville

December 6, 2017

By Brandon Moseley
Alabama Political Reporter

BOCAR, a Tier 1 automotive supplier, broke ground on a $115 million new plant in Huntsville, creating more than 300 jobs in a project that adds to the state’s booming automotive manufacturing sector.

Gov. Kay Ivey attended the groundbreaking.

“Delighted to join BOCAR in the groundbreaking to celebrate their $115 million investment in Limestone County,” Ivey said. “This Tier 1 auto parts supplier will continue to show the strength of Alabama’s auto industry.”

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Gov. Ivey remembers Macon County economic development official Harold Powell

November 17, 2017

By Brandon Moseley 
Alabama Political Reporter

Wednesday, Macon County Economic Development Authority Secretary-Treasurer Harold Powell died in Italy during a trip to lure Leonardo Aircraft to build a new manufacturing plant in Macon County.

“It is with great sorrow that I learned today of the passing of Harold Powell Jr. while representing the State of Alabama and Macon County on an economic development mission to Italy,” Alabama Gov. Kay Ivey (R), who was traveling in Italy with Mr. Powell said in a statement.

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Aerojet Rocketdyne begins construction on new plant

October 26, 2017

By Brandon Moseley
Alabama Political Reporter

Tuesday, Alabama Gov. Kay Ivey attended the official groundbreaking ceremony of Aerojet Rocketdyne’s new 136,000-square-foot advanced manufacturing facility in Huntsville.

“This is not only an exciting day for Aerojet Rocketdyne and the city of Huntsville, it’s an exciting day for the entire state of Alabama,” Gov. Ivey stated. She said that the advanced work Aerojet Rocketdyne will be carrying out in Huntsville matches the city’s long history of innovation and aerospace engineering. Ivey said that Alabama is becoming a premier destination for aerospace industry investment.

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SSAB Americas to move division head office to Mobile

October 23, 2017

By Staff
Alabama Political Reporter

Friday, America’s division of global steelmaker SSAB announced that they plan to relocate the division’s head office from suburban Chicago to Mobile, bringing 60 jobs to Alabama.

Since 2001, the company has operated a steel mill in nearby Axis, which employs nearly 600 workers and produces more than 1 million tons of high-quality steel plates each year.

“Mobile is a growing community with a booming economy; we are excited to expand our presence in the area as a trusted employer and community partner,” SSAB Americas’ President Chuck Schmitt said. “Moving our team to Mobile will ensure that our senior leaders and support staff work in closer proximity to our front-line operations, where key decisions are made for our business and customers.”

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