Republican Plan to Wreck Michigan: 4,600 jobs on the line

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Forget for a moment
that the Republican Pledge to America announced yesterday is utter nonsense if
you try to make the math work. 

 

Economist Paul
Krugman
writes that the GOP pledge to end the Bush tax cuts would create an
additional $3.7 trillion in debt over the next decade, a problem that could
only be addressed by privatizing Social Security and Medicare.  So maybe–likely?–that’s the real
Republican agenda lurking behind the Pledge.  Ending Social Security has long been a Republican dream.

 

But let’s set that
aside for the time being and just look at what happens locally in
recession-battered Michigan if voters put Republicans in control of Congress
this November and they make good on their pledge to immediately end Recovery
Act
spending. 

 

The result:  major new factories being built in
Holland, Midland and Livonia with Recovery Act money would be put into
immediate danger.  Those plants are
expected to employ 4,600 Michigan workers over the next two years while
hundreds of construction workers are already on the job.

 

In addition, there
would be millions of dollars lost that putting people to work on road projects,
in schools and in communities across the state.   But these are
the biggies that could be on the chopping block next year:

 

Battery Manufacturing and Electric Drive
Component Grants – Livonia, Michigan – $249 million

A123 is using its
$249 million Recovery Act award to build battery factories in Livonia, Romulus,
and Brownstown, Michigan.  The factories will help America become a leader
in battery manufacturing technology while also providing a critical link in the
supply chain for other clean energy technologies and products.  The
company, which received its award on December 3, 2009, has already reported the
creation of 90 new jobs, and expects to hire over 3,000 people by 2012.  A123
has signed contracts with Navistar and Fisker, and is actively working with
several well-known carmakers.  The company plans to ship the first battery
from its high-volume production line in Livonia this September.

 

Keeping Clean Energy Jobs of the Future in
America – Holland, Michigan – $299 million

Johnson Controls won
a $299 million grant to build a battery manufacturing facility in Holland,
Michigan.  Johnson Controls is matching the investment dollar-for-dollar,
and will be creating new high-tech jobs in the automotive industry.  The
project is already bringing jobs to Holland – Johnson Controls has created or
saved at least 100 jobs so far, and expects to create 500 permanent positions
when the project is complete.  Before the Recovery Act grant, Johnson
Controls had considered Asian locations for its first high-volume advanced
lithium-ion battery factory.  The Recovery Act allowed the company to
build in Holland, hire local construction and manufacturing workers, and help
create a domestic advanced battery industry.  Johnson Controls has already
signed contracts with Ford and Azure dynamics, and plans to ship its first
battery in September of 2010, only ten months after receiving their grant.

 

American Batteries for America’s New Electric
Vehicles –Holland, Michigan– $151 million

Compact Power, Inc.
received a grant of over $150 million from the Department of Energy to build a
battery cell manufacturing factory in Holland, Michigan.  The factory will
produce battery cells for the Chevy Volt, amongst other vehicles.  According
to Compact, approximately 70 construction jobs have been created or saved and
they are on-track to hire 300 workers at the peak of construction.  In
addition, by 2013, Compact estimates 300 workers will be permanently employed
at the facility.

 

Manufacturing Batteries to Power 60,000
vehicles – Midland, Michigan – $161 million

In June, Dow Kokam
broke ground on a brand new advanced, large-format battery production facility
in Midland, Michigan. According to Dow Kokam, they have already supported more
than 100 construction jobs, a figure which is expected to rise to 1,000 at the
peak of construction.  Dow Kokam estimates that the 800,000 square-foot
facility will permanently employ nearly 800 workers when complete, and will be
able to produce enough affordable lithium-ion batteries to power 60,000
vehicles per year.  Dow Kokam and its project partners are matching the
grant dollar for dollar. 

 

 

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