Monday, May 24, 2010

Michigan's Lieutenant Governor urges port communities to work together

By Dave Alexander | Muskegon Chronicle

MUSKEGON -- Michigan's port communities should take lessons from the state's development of an emerging advanced battery manufacturing sector, Lt. Gov. John Cherry said Thursday in Muskegon.

Speaking to the Michigan Port Collaborative at the Holiday Inn Muskegon Harbor, Cherry said the port communities have the built-in advantage of promoting the state's No. 1 resource -- the Great Lakes.

At a time of "resource scarcity," the 100 port communities across the state must work together on a common strategy to improve the state's harbors, what Cherry calls Michigan's "front doors."

Advanced battery plants now being developed from Midland to Holland -- including the fortu PowerCell plant in Muskegon Township -- are the result of a strategic plan to make Michigan the leader in powering future electric vehicles, Cherry said.

Similar efforts to bolster activities such as commercial shipping and recreational boating can produce similar economic development gains, he said.

"The more attractive our port cities, the more attractive the state of Michigan is for those seeking a home or a business in our state," Cherry told the 110 port officials from Detroit to Marquette gathered here. "With batteries, we took action quickly and worked together to achieve our goals. The ports must do the same." More here.

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