Brandenburg, LaFontaine sponsor legislation to increase dredging loans


Brandenburg, LaFontaine sponsor legislation to increase dredging loans

LANSING­­ Legislation that would create a partnership between marina owners, private lenders and the state to assist in emergency dredging was introduced in the Michigan Senate on Thursday, said sponsor Sen. Jack Brandenburg.

Senate Bill 252 would create a loan program that would enable marinas to pay a low interest rate on loans for emergency dredging projects.

“Our waterways are not only beautiful, they are also a vital part of our economy, which is why this measure is necessary,” said Brandenburg, R-Harrison Township.

State Rep. Andrea LaFontaine introduced companion legislation House Bill 4410,  in the state House.

“Poorly maintained waterways are affecting commerce and tourism in cities across our state,” said LaFontaine, R-Columbus Township. “The legislation will help job providers make the necessary improvements in a cost-effective way to ensure all Michigan residents and tourists can enjoy the Great Lakes this summer.”

Both Brandenburg and LaFontaine agree that the revenue generated by boating is far too important to the state’s economy for action not be taken on dredging.

In 2012, there were 922,856 registered recreational boats in Michigan. This ranks Michigan 3rd in the nation behind Florida and Minnesota.

According to a 2007 study by Michigan State University, boating has a $3.9 million impact and represents 52,000 jobs.  A similar study done by MSU in 2010 found that the direct economic impact on a local economy of a single marina with 455 slips is: 38 jobs, $1 million in income and $1.6 million in value added to the economy.

Some highlights of the bill are:

·Lenders will take the credit risk, lending private dollars, and make the final decision on the loan amount up to the cap based on their risk exposure/tolerance;

·There will be a $500,000 cap on loans to individual marinas; and

·Loans will be for five years.


Michigan recognized by Site Selection magazine

Michigan recognized by Site Selection magazine

LANSING—Site Selection magazine has named Michigan the No. 4 state for major new corporate facilities and expansions in 2012, said state Sen. Jack Brandenburg.

“This is just one of the many accolades that Michigan has received over the last two years,” said Brandenburg, R-Harrison Township. “More and more companies are choosing to call Michigan home, which is proof that bold reforms that were put in place are working and helping to move our state forward.”

Site Selection,
a global business publication, verified 337 projects in Michigan that met capital investment, job-creation or size standards as part of its annual Governor’s Cup ranking. This year, Michigan finished behind first-place Texas, second-place Ohio and third-place Pennsylvania. Rounding out the top 10 were Illinois, Georgia, North Carolina, Tennessee, Virginia and Kentucky.

Site Selection awards the Governor’s Cup each year to the governor of the state with the highest number of qualified capital investment projects the previous calendar year. The publication’s proprietary New Plant database is populated with private-sector projects that meet one or more of these criteria: an investment of at least $1 million, creation of 50 or more new jobs or construction of new space of at least 20,000 square feet.

A few examples of new corporate projects located in Michigan are MAHLE (Farmington Hills), Brose (New Boston, Auburn Hills and Warren), Dart Container’s headquarters expansion (Mason) and Hark Orchids’ new propagation facility (Kalamazoo), the company’s first global expansion outside of Germany.

“Businesses around the world are recognizing that Michigan is open for business,” Brandenburg said. “I look forward to continued prosperity as our economic climate continues to improve.”