LANSING – Governor Jennifer M. Granholm today announced approval of key state incentives to help move forward the transformation of the idled Wixom Assembly plant into a renewable energy production center. The project, announced last month and subject to approval of Department of Energy loan guarantees that the companies recently applied for, is expected to directly employ an estimated 4,000 workers.
“Michigan is aggressively targeting clean-energy companies, because we are determined to continue diversifying our economy and creating thousands of new green jobs,” Granholm said. “Our innovative economic development incentives are helping bring projects like this one to Michigan.”
The Michigan Economic Growth Authority (MEGA) today, on Michigan Economic Development Corporation (MEDC) recommendation, approved clean-energy incentives to Clairvoyant Energy Solar Panel Manufacturing Inc. (www.clairvoyant-energy.com) and Xtreme Power Inc. (http://www.xtremepowersolutions.com/). Clairvoyant was approved for a photovoltaic MBT credit valued at $25 million over five years, and Xtreme Power Inc. was granted an advanced-battery credit valued at $100 million over four years.
Michigan’s photovoltaic MBT credit, authorized under Public Act 110 of 2009 signed into law earlier today by Governor Granholm,provides a refundable tax credit for the construction and operation of a facility that develops and manufactures photovoltaic technology, photovoltaic systems or photovoltaic energy. The state’s advanced-battery incentive program provides refundable tax credits to encourage companies to develop and manufacture advanced batteries and commercialize advanced-battery technologies in Michigan. Other state and local incentives will be considered at a future date.
“We commend Michigan’s goal to create a thriving U.S. renewable-energy industry and look forward to working with Governor Granholm in reshaping Michigan’s future,” said Xtreme Power CEO Carlos Coe.
Clairvoyant Energy and Xtreme Power plan investments of $857 million (over four phases) and $475 million, respectively, to redevelop the 320-acre plant site and its 4.7 million square feet of building space to manufacture solar power (Clairvoyant Energy) and energy-storage systems (Xtreme Power). The redevelopment work at the Wixom site is expected to begin early next year with manufacturing at the site slated to begin in late 2011 The redevelopment plan is expected to create more than 4,000 direct jobs, including 750 direct jobs by Clairvoyant, 2,500 direct jobs by Xtreme Power, and those created by local suppliers as well as thousands of indirect jobs.
“We at Clairvoyant Energy are pleased to be leading the charge toward a greener future for Michigan with the green jobs of tomorrow today,” said Clairvoyant Energy CEO David Hardee.
“This is a game-changer for Oakland County,” said Maureen D. Krauss, director of Oakland County’s Department of Economic Development and Community Affairs. “These two companies are literally re-energizing a once vibrant work space that had gone silent. At the same time, Xtreme Power and Clairvoyant will put thousands of our highly skilled employees to work. We’re confident these two companies will prosper because of their sensible and timely use of our valuable resources.”
In other MEGA action, the board today approved a photovoltaic MBT credit valued at $15 million over five years for Georgia-based Suniva Inc. to locate a $250 million solar-manufacturing facility in Saginaw County’s Thomas Township. Suniva will create 500 new jobs over the next five years subject to receiving a Department of Energy loan guarantee, which the company recently applied for.
“In Michigan, we are skating to where the puck is going to be as opposed to where it currently is,” MEDC President and CEO Greg Main said. “We are being proactive, and that is why we are taking the lead in growing alternative-energy sectors like advanced battery, solar and wind.”
Granholm said her administration is working hard to make Michigan the epicenter for green manufacturing. Recently created incentives and programs to support the growth of cutting-edge Michigan companies in this field include first-in-the-nation advanced-battery incentives, the 21st Century Jobs Fund, alternative-energy and high-tech tax credits, renewable-energy Renaissance Zones, Anchor Zone incentives, and Centers of Energy Excellence.
In August, 12 Michigan projects were awarded more than $1.35 billion from the U.S. Department of Energy to expand their advanced-battery manufacturing capabilities in the state.
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