Granholm Says State is Best Positioned to Become Advanced-Battery Capital of the World

Contact: Liz Boyd 517-335-6397

April 10, 2009

Governor's radio address discusses importance of diversifying Michigan's economy and attracting more high-tech jobs

LANSING - In her weekly radio address, Governor Jennifer M. Granholm today said that Michigan will help reduce our nation's dependence on foreign oil by becoming the advanced-battery capital of the world and the home of a new generation of electric vehicles.  This week, the governor signed legislation for additional refundable tax credits, bringing the total to $555 million, that will expand opportunities for companies to develop and manufacture advanced batteries in Michigan.

"This incentive program puts us in prime position to help companies in Michigan secure the majority of the $2 billion in federal recovery money that will enable the United States to build an advanced-battery infrastructure in our country," Granholm said.  "And that is critical for our national security.  We must not trade cars that run on foreign oil for cars that run on batteries made overseas when we have both the work force and the know-how it takes, to build them right here in Michigan." 

The governor said that her administration is aggressively going after federal battery funding as part of her strategy to diversify Michigan's economy and attract more high-tech jobs.  The governor said that the bill she signed earlier this week, combined with the state's great research universities and strong manufacturing base, will encourage further and faster growth of the advanced-battery industry in Michigan. 

"The new electric auto industry will create a wide range of jobs, including research and development, manufacturing and engineering," Granholm said.  "That's why we are charging full speed ahead to make Michigan the advanced-battery capital of the world."

The governor's weekly radio address is released each Friday morning and may be heard on broadcast stations across the state.  The address is available on the governor's Web site at ( www.michigan.gov/gov ) for download, together with a clip of the quote above.  The radio address is also available as a podcast on the Web site, as well as on iTunes and vi2a RSS feed for general distribution to personal MP3 players and home computers. Links to the audio files and text of today's address follow.

Governor Jennifer M. Granholm
Radio Address - Battery Legislation

Full:  http://www.michigan.gov/documents/gov/Gov192_Full_274507_7.mp3
Edited:  http://www.michigan.gov/documents/gov/Gov192_Edit_274508_7.mp3 
Quote:  http://www.michigan.gov/documents/gov/Gov192_Quote_274509_7.mp3 

Hello this is Governor Jennifer Granholm.

We all know that Michigan is the home of the automobile industry, but our state is also the global center of automotive research and development. That means we are the state best positioned to help reduce our nation's dependence on foreign oil.  How will we do it - by making Michigan the advanced-battery capital of the world and the home of a new generation of electric vehicles.  And even though our auto industry is struggling in a brutal national recession, that green transformation is already underway.

Michigan is the state that established first-in-the-nation tax credits for advanced battery development and production with the initial $335 million in tax incentives I signed into law in January.  And to keep that momentum going, this week I signed legislation that authorizes an additional $220 million in refundable tax credits that will expand opportunities for companies to develop and manufacture advanced batteries in Michigan.

This bill makes additional funding available to encourage even further and faster growth of the advanced-battery industry here in Michigan.  That's a total of $555 million we're investing to make Michigan a state where we not only build the next generation of cars - but also the batteries that power them.

This incentive program puts us in prime position to help companies in Michigan secure the majority of the $2 billion in federal recovery money that will enable the United States to build an advanced-battery infrastructure in our country.   And that is critical for our national security.   We must not trade cars that run on foreign oil for cars that run on batteries made overseas when we have both the work force and the know-how it takes, to build them right here in Michigan.

Combined with our great research universities and our strong manufacturing base, these advantages make Michigan the only logical state for commercial-scale advanced battery design, development, manufacture and integration.

That's why we are aggressively going after that federal battery funding as part of our strategy to diversify Michigan's economy and attract more high-tech jobs.

With a strong partner in the White House, my Administration is now working closely with Michigan's Congressional delegation to position our state as the best candidate for these federal dollars. Our representatives in Congress fought hard to ensure that the $2 billion in advanced battery technologies made it into the recovery package. Now they're working closely with our Michigan Economic Development Corporation to position Michigan to obtain as much of that funding as possible.

The new electric auto industry will create a wide range of jobs, including research and development, manufacturing and engineering.  That's why we are charging full speed ahead to make Michigan the advanced-battery capital of the world.

Thank you for listening

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