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Posts tagged: moses lake

Automaker BMW plans major expansion of Moses Lake carbon-fiber plant

Since last Friday, a lot of people are suddenly aware of SGL, the German company that has a large carbon-fiber production site in Moses Lake. That's when state officials and company execs gathered in Moses Lake to announce a major expansion of one of Eastern Washington's distinctive high-end manufacturing companies.

The S-R used a Seattle Times story, printed Sunday, that explains how the plant got to Grant County, and why BMW is investing a lot more money into more jobs and increased carbon-fiber production.

The Moses Lake site was chosen for its cheap and clean energy. The expanded plant, touted to be the world’s largest carbon-fiber plant, will employ about 200 workers earning $17 to $22 per hour.

Photo from SGL.

GSI says it will study raising the idea of a Spokane port district

Spokane-based Greater Spokane Inc. is launching a preliminary study to determine if area voters would support a port district.

Mentioned during the recent GSI annual meeting, the idea of a port district has resurfaced several times among proponents who say it can help economic development.

GSI CEO and President Rich Hadley said on Friday that the group will likely create a task force from area officials and business leaders to study the idea.

 In 1982 Spokane business leaders put a port district to voters and saw it defeated resoundingly, 4-to-1 against.

State law allows counties and government bodies to form a port district and raise funds through taxes. Port districts can be formed anywhere regardless of proximity to water or an airport.

Hadley said Spokane leaders met with officials from Benton County and Moses Lake, both of which have used port districts to boost economic activity.

Moses Lake used its district in 1998 to enlist a large expansion by Genie Industries, which makes construction equipment. Genie built a manufacturing plant there after port officials spent $2.5 million renovating a former airplane hangar for the company's use.

Districts can focus on adding infrastructure to attract businesses or help existing firms expand. That can range from building new roads to adding utility lines, Hadley said. They also serve as marketing arms, encouraging new investment.

Spokane and Yakima are the only two Washington counties to not have a port district, he added.

In 2000 area officials studied the port district idea but shelved it when interest and momentum behindg the idea lagged.

INHS establishes a full-time MedStar helicopter base in Moses Lake

Northwest MedStar, the air-transport medical service, is setting up a permanent base in Moses Lake.

For the past two summers the service has operated a helicopter day base about nine miles north of Moses Lake through an agreement with Grant County Fire District 5.

The decision by nonprofit INHS establishes a fulltime base, with a registered nurse, respiratory therapist, pilot and mechanic. They will handle emergency responses and assist in transports between regional hospitals.

 A permanent hangar will be constructed later this year to house the helicopter.

 The full-time base provides more direct air transport services and decreased response time for north central Washington, said an INHS press release.

Moses Lake selected for BMW parts plant

SEATTLE — The companies planning to build a parts plant for lightweight BMW cars have selected a site at Moses Lake in central Washington because of the availability of hydroelectric power, The Associated Press reports.

The decision by SGL Group and BMW AG was announced today at a news conference in Seattle.

Gov. Chris Gregoire worked to land the factory. Its $100 million initial investment will create 80 jobs.

The carbon fiber parts made at the plant will be used in BMW’s upcoming Megacity electric vehicle. The urban car is set to be launched before 2015. It will be assembled in Leipzig, Germany.

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