From the Desk of the Editor in Chief
These gems didn’t just catch our eye with a quick flash. Their consistent economic development sparkle earned them front-and-center display in our annual showcase.
Iowa is rapidly staking its claim as the number one wind-turbine manufacturing hub in the nation.
World-famous for its expertise in automotive manufacturing and brewing beer, modern Germany also has established itself as a media magnet, an IT hub, and a finance center.
North Carolina’s aerospace and aviation industry is flying high as it attracts high-caliber companies and creates well-paying jobs.
The Palmetto State’s Department of Commerce is casting lines into international waters in an attempt to reel in foreign traders.
With a bevy of financial incentives, acres of available land, and an assortment of creative thinkers, California is home to one of the largest state economies in the nation. Lucrative business deals await, and it’s not too late to take part in this modern-day gold rush.
The biotechnology and pharmaceuticals sectors have become engines for economic development across the country.
A Location With Everything Going For It Uniquely situated along 1-74 between Indianapolis and Cincinnati, Greensburg/Decatur County has proven itself to be a great place to live, work and prosper. Area residents enjoy multiple golf courses, a state-of-the-art youth sports complex, first-class medical care, and dozens of community gatherings, events and festivals. Greensburg/Decatur County is a strong site selection choice for a variety of reasons, including labor and land availability, transportation access, quality of life, and a business-friendly tax climate. A reinvigorated rail line, I-74, and Greensburg-Decatur County Airport (which has a 3,500-foot paved runway) provide multiple access points to today’s lanes of commerce, with the utilities and technology capabilities in place to support businesses of all sizes. Whether dealing with customers on Main Street or in Tokyo, businesses can rest assured that their efforts can be supported in Greensburg/Decatur County. Greensburg/Decatur County boasts two shovel-ready sites, and training and education funding is available for development. Home to a new Honda auto plant, Greensburg/Decatur Economic Development Corp. is actively courting other overseas companies and will soon post a Japanese-language version of its Web site. Honda’s $550-million Decatur Plant Starts Rolling Honda recently completed its new $550-million automotive plant on a 1,700-acre tract in Decatur County, IN, near Greensburg, 50 miles southeast of Indianapolis. The plant is beginning mass production of fuel efficient four-cylinder vehicles this fall, with an annual production capacity of 200,000 vehicles and employment of 2,000 associates. The new Indiana plant, Honda’s sixth auto plant and 14th major plant overall in North America, will help boost Honda’s total North American auto production capacity from 1.4 million units to more than 1.6 million units in 2008, grow Honda’s employment in North America to more than 37,000 associates and increase North American capital investment to more than $9 billion. “Honda’s success in America has been based on our strong commitment to our customers,” says Koichi Kondo, president of American Honda Motor Co., Inc., and chief operating officer of Honda’s North America Region operations. “We believe the great state of Indiana has what we need to continue this success-an outstanding community of people, excellent transportation systems, and the necessary infrastructure to support industry. It is an ideal location in the Midwest both for our network of parts suppliers and as a central location for all of our customers across the country.” In 2005, American Honda achieved record U.S. sales of 1,462,472 new Honda and Acura cars and light trucks, the ninth straight year of record annual sales. In order to meet […]
Spokane: An Unspoken Success Story of the West Located on the eastern side of Washington state, 18 miles west of Idaho and 100 miles south of Canada, the Spokane region is home to 1.4 million people in the Inland Northwest. Since 2005, the Spokane region’s labor force has doubled the national average’s pace, adding more than 21,000 jobs since 2002. Spokane’s workforce is comprised of more than 90% college graduates, and more than 65,000 students study within a 75-mile radius of the city. The education hub of the Inland Northwest, Spokane has the second largest community college district in Washington, and the area boasts 18 higher education institutions in total. More than 60% of residents have attended college and almost 30% hold a bachelor’s degree, while more than 10% hold degrees beyond the post-baccalaureate level. Spokane’s attractive business climate has drawn some interesting organizations to its region. One in particular is Seattle-based Lighthouse for the Blind, Inc., which plans to open a satellite facility in Spokane this month, and increase its workforce to 40 people within three years. Within its first year, the Lighthouse hopes to employ five to 10 people who are blind. The U.S. Labor Department reports at least a 70% unemployment rate among the blind. Available positions at the Lighthouse include machinists, production workers, computer instructors, IT specialists, receptionists, and Web programmers, among others. The Lighthouse offers support services such as orientation and mobility training, housing support, and computer training. Spokane’s Power of Community Created in 2001, the Spokane Community Empowerment Zone (CEZ) spurs economic development throughout Spokane County by offering tax incentives to qualified businesses engaged in manufacturing, R&D or software development. Businesses must apply for the credits prior to groundbreaking or hiring; locate or expand within the designated geographic area (Spokane’s West Central, East Central, and Hillyard neighborhoods); and/or locate in a county having a designated zone and hire employees who are residents of the zone. Forty-two companies have taken advantage of the CEZ benefits, saving a combined $8 million in tax incentives. In turn, these companies have invested $94 million into the Spokane region and created 1,210 new jobs in total. Spokane’s CEZ offers: A Sales and Use Tax Deferral or Exemption on new equipment and construction costs for new or remodeled buildings used in manufacturing, R&D activities, or computer-related activities. A Business and Occupation New Job Tax Credit of $2,000 (for wages and benefits worth $40,000 or less) or $4,000 (for wages and benefits worth more than $40,000) per new job created by […]