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The Michigan Senate approved a five-bill package Tuesday establishing a regional transit authority for Metro Detroit and allowing public transportation projects to be funded with a voter-approved registration fee on car owners.
The bills, sought by Gov. Rick Snyder, are seen as crucial to funding a regional transit authority for Metro Detroit and empowering the authority to take over management of the region's major bus systems and create dedicated high-speed bus lanes on the area's busiest corridors.
Senate Bill 911 would allow the transit authority to seek voter approval in Macomb, Oakland, Washtenaw and Wayne counties for a special motor vehicle registration fee to fund the authority's transportation projects. Under the bill, voters could be asked to approve a registration fee not to exceed $1.20 for every $1,000 of a vehicle's listing price.
Thank your Lansing Nerdpublicans who have figured out another accountability loophole. To levy taxes on the people: let the moocher herd vote. To silence the people from their voice: limit access to constitutional amendments.
PORTAGE, Ind. - Governor Mitch Daniels joined executives from Fronius USA, LLC, the fourth-largest solar inverter producer in the world, today to announce that the company will relocate its North American headquarters here from Michigan, creating up to 512 new jobs by 2016.
The Austrian company will invest more than $26.64 million to lease and equip 400,000 square-feet of space in Portage to assemble and manufacture its products for the North American market. Through this new facility, Fronius plans to develop its current manufacturing capacities to meet the global demand for solar electronic inverters and welding technology.
"We're excited to bring new jobs anywhere in Indiana, but we're particularly excited Fronius has chosen northwest Indiana," said Daniels. "Fronius is well-established, fast-growing and at the top of their field, exactly the kind of company we've rebuilt the Indiana business climate to attract."
Fronius' relocation marks the 1,000th new business establishment or expansion the Indiana Economic Development Corporation, the state's lead economic development agency, has completed since its inception in 2005.
Established in Brighton, Mich. in 2002, the family-owned, international company has been engaged in solar electronics since 1992, in particular the development and production of photovoltaic inverters for both grid-connected and independent power supplies.
"Indiana has a great business climate with a perfect infrastructure for us, including a good network of suppliers and skilled employees," said Wolfgang Niedrist, managing director for U.S. sales at Fronius. "We can't wait to get to know the people of Indiana even better as we move into the community."
Fronius' establishment in Indiana comes on the heels of two recent announcements from companies also relocating to Indiana from Michigan. Earlier this month, Spartan Motors, Inc. announced its plans to relocate parts of its operations to Wakarusa from Michigan, creating up to 60 jobs by the second half of 2012. In May, Molded Foam, LLC announced its acquisition of a Michigan firm and intentions to relocate operations to Indiana, creating up to 45 jobs in Elkhart County by 2014.
So it goes... Michigan continues to hemorrhage its Private Sector Job Creators flowing into Right-To-Work Indiana. That really should make one question the motive behind Gov Snydholm going "all in" with bypassing the Legislature on his relentless Non-Agreement Agreement campaign for his quasi-government DRIC agenda.
A New International Trade Crossing would not be built with Chinese steel and was never going to be built with Chinese steel, contrary to a Detroit News columnist's assertion to the contrary, said Canadian Consul General Roy NORTON today.
Norton said whoever tipped off Nolan FINLEY did not "know anything about Canada's procurement policies" and created what he called "not a well-founded story." Norton said Canada doesn't have a preference for Chinese steel and the competitive open bidding process will yield a product that will give taxpayers value. (MIRS June 5, 2012)
Oh man, what a mess. Someone opened up the Pandora's Box about Canada's complete control over the DRIC bridge based on the Letter of Intent of $550 million. After all, there are the secret Terms and Conditions that have never been revealed in that letter that had to be negotiated. Note what the Consul General said "Canada's procurement policies."
When you supposedly provide all the money, then you can make all the rules. Michiganders finally have understood that. The issue became apparent over the use of the Chinese steel in the construction of the Bridge.
Of course, as I speculated, the real role that the Chinese will play is that they will be the P3 operator of the Bridge and will build, finance and maintain it over the next hundred years. It is an expanded role of that which they undertook in San Francisco. Naturally, that is required because no P3 proponents will ever finance the multibillion dollar DRIC boondoggle without Government guaranteed availability payments. Accordingly, the Chinese are prepared to step into the breach, provided of course that Chinese steel, labour and other materials are used. Or so they are leading everyone to believe at this stage.
So it goes... yesterday it's Penske, today it's Target.
via The Detroit News
The Target Fireworks will go off as planned this month, but the cash-strapped city will get help from county and state authorities to help keep downtown secure, Mayor Dave Bing said Wednesday.
Wayne, Oakland and Macomb counties and the Michigan State Police have committed to helping with public safety and offsetting security costs estimated at about $700,000, Bing said in a statement. This year's fireworks are set for June 25.
"After assessing the considerable public safety costs, we have reached out to and received the support of Wayne, Oakland and Macomb sheriff's offices and the Michigan State Police to help ensure that this year's fireworks display would go on as scheduled," Bing said.
Bing added the city will need help with other big downtown events.
Is there anything that Bing and the city can do without using other peoples money? Amazing. Target decides it wants to get some advertising by propping up an event in a war zone, and the public gets stuck with paying for their zookeeper.
A123 in April received a two-year extension on its deadline to spend a $249.1 million grant from the federal government, originally received in 2009. The money was to be used for the construction of new lithium-ion battery manufacturing facilities in Michigan. A123's Livonia plant opened in 2010, and its Romulus plant opened last year. The company had $120 million left of the $249.1 million grant.
The hiring announcement comes after the company has hit financial problems. In March, A123 said it would spend about $55 million to replace defective battery packs in five battery packages that were assembled at its plant in Livonia.
In addition, financial losses have accelerated. In its 2011 earnings, A123's loss grew 69 percent to $257.7 million from the year earlier. And in April the company reported a first-quarter loss of $125 million -- a 133 percent increase from the $53.6 million loss during the same quarter in 2011.