By Paul DeMarco, former Alabama State Representative
Over the past 25 years, Alabama has had its fair share of problems it has faced. – public corruption, prison overcrowding, woes with public education and the ever-increasing cost for Medicaid.
Where Alabama has shined is economic development and job creation. Since Mercedes-Benz selected Alabama as the site of its first-ever American manufacturing facility in 1993, thousands of jobs have been created in the state. With the addition of Honda, Hyundai, and the joint venture of Mazda, Toyota, Alabama has one of the largest workforces in the Nation for automotive manufacturing.
Thus, it is no surprise that Alabama was the recent recipient of the Golden Shovel Award from business publication Area Development for the state’s results in recruiting new companies for the state.
There was $8.7 billion in new investment in the state last year and over 17,000 new jobs created in 2018 alone. All of this has lead to record low unemployment rates and more Alabama residents working than ever before in the state’s history.
Yet, Alabama’s success has not been limited to auto manufacturing, as the aerospace and aviation industries are becoming an even larger segment of the state’s economy. In addition, the technology companies Google, Amazon and Facebook have also invested in Alabama.
Alabama’s trophy case for economic development continues to grow and providing good jobs for Alabama residents is something we can take pride in as we seek solutions to address Alabama’s future.