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September 2019 Group Watch: News & Views from the State House

Positive economic news and appointment announcements top the news in Alabama politics this month.

  • Gov. Ivey Replaces Chris Elliot on ATRIP-II Committee: Governor Kay Ivey appointed State Senator Vivian Davis Figures to serve on the Alabama Transportation Rehabilitation and Improvement Program-II Committee replacing State Senator Chris Elliot. Ivey pointed to Figures track record of seeking progress and bringing people together, along with being the most senior senator from the Mobile/Baldwin County Delegation. Elliot is a freshman legislator from Baldwin County and Figures has served in the state senate since 1997. This committee is charged with reviewing and awarding of grants for eligible road and bridge projects.
  • BIO Alabama Names Exec Director: BIO Alabama announced that healthcare executive Sonia Robinson has joined the statewide bioscience trade association as its first full-time executive director, leading efforts within the sector to grow employment, increase research development and expand international trade. The biosciences industry contributes $7.3 billion in economic impact to Alabama annually. Robinson’s career in healthcare marketing and public relations, plus her experience with startups are all very relevant to the issues BIO Alabama is addressing. Birmingham-based BIO Alabama is the state partner of the international life sciences trade organization Biotechnology Innovation Organization (BIO).
  • Alabama High on Area Development magazine’s 2019 “Top States for Business” List: Alabama earned a No. 4 ranking and Top-10 marks in 11 different individual categories in Area Development’s 2019 survey, underscoring the state’s business-friendly environment, leading job-training programs and other advantages for economic development. The ranking follows a record year for Alabama’s economic development team. In 2018, companies announced projects involving $8.7 billion in new capital investment in the state, the highest total for a year, according to an analysis by the Alabama Department of Commerce. Alabama trailed Georgia, Tennessee and South Carolina in the magazine’s rankings. North Carolina rounded out the Top 5.

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