A MILESTONE - With Berry Hill Industrial Park groundbreaking, hopes to attract thousands of jobs

A MILESTONE - With Berry Hill Industrial Park groundbreaking, hopes to attract thousands of jobs

After more than eight years of work by regional officials and years of wrangling with bureaucratic regulations, leaders finally broke ground at the 3,500-acre Berry Hill Industrial Park on Thursday afternoon.

The groundbreaking ceremony was for phase one development — grading — of a 133-acre site at the park.

For local, regional and state officials who attended the event in southwestern Pittsylvania County, the moment was a long time in the making, arriving after years of struggle against a “Catch-22” rule from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. The corps would not issue a permit for the site if there were no committed industries, but the park could not attract committed companies unless it already was permitted and ready for development.

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Economic director for Southern Virginia Regional Alliance named

The Southern Virginia Regional Alliance has named Linda Hutson Green as the new director of economic development.

Green has an extensive career in the public and private sectors focused on economic development throughout Southern Virginia. She currently serves as Congressman Robert Hurt's District Director.

In her new role, Green will be responsible for the development and execution of a comprehensive regional economic development strategy for both the alliance and the Institute for Advanced Learning and Research. The alliance serves the economic development departments of the Counties of Patrick, Pittsylvania, and Halifax, along with the city of Danville and the Institute.

"For the last three decades I have worked with businesses and localities to improve the opportunities and development, inclusive of federal and state resources and policies. It is a wonderful opportunity to be able to put this into action in support of job creation for our region," Green said.

"On behalf of SVRA and IALR, Linda is a welcome addition to the current regional efforts and progress. Her familiarity with and past contributions to regional economic development initiatives will be great attributes for the work of SVRA and IALR," said Jerry L. Gwaltney, IALR Executive Director.

Green will begin her work Oct. 3.

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Governor McAuliffe Announces 22 New Jobs in Henry County

Solid Stone Fabrics to invest $1.5 million to expand textile manufacturing operation

RICHMOND – Governor Terry McAuliffe announced today that Solid Stone Fabrics, a textile manufacturer and distributor of stretch fabrics, will invest $1.5 million to expand its operation in Henry County. The expansion will accommodate new equipment and include building improvements to the existing facility. Virginia successfully competed against California, Florida and New Jersey for the project, which will create 22 new jobs.

"Textile manufacturing is an intricate part of Southside's economy and I applaud Henry County for their business-friendly initiatives and workforce development that attracts high-caliber companies like Solid Stone Fabrics," said Governor McAuliffe. "Solid Stone Fabrics, which started out as a one-man shop 13 years ago and has grown to over a 60-person operation, is a testament to the importance and support of small-businesses here in the Commonwealth. I congratulate Solid Stone on their expansion and will continue our efforts to diversify and build a new Virginia economy."

"Small business success stories like Solid Stone Fabric are a testament to Virginia's business climate and the hardworking citizens across the Commonwealth," said Secretary of Commerce and Trade Maurice Jones. "Business expansion is the best way to grow Virginia's economy, and I congratulate Solid Stone on this exciting announcement.

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Governor McAuliffe Announces 41 New Jobs in City of Danville

Overfinch to invest $1.82 million to establish manufacturing operation

FARNBOROUGH – Governor Terry McAuliffe announced today that Overfinch, the world's leading creator of bespoke Range Rover vehicles, will invest $1.82 million to establish a manufacturing operation in the City of Danville. The company plans to upfit Jaguar Land Rover vehicles, which will be sold to customers across the U.S. The investment includes an assembly and conversion workshop, vehicle servicing, diagnostics, and parts warehouse. Virginia successfully competed against California for the project, which will create 41 new jobs.

"I am pleased to congratulate Overfinch for their expansion and applaud their decision to establish their new manufacturing operation in the City of Danville," said Governor McAuliffe, speaking at the announcement. "As Virginia expands our global partnerships, this deal exemplifies our advantages as highly skilled, workforce-ready state and speaks to the competitive business advantages of the Southside Virginia region. As a well-regarded international automotive company, Overfinch will be a great corporate partner in our continuing efforts to diversify and build a new Virginia economy."

"Overfinch's operation is an exciting addition to the City of Danville and the Commonwealth of Virginia, and I want to thank the many partners involved in this win," said Secretary of Commerce and Trade Maurice Jones. "Advanced manufacturing is a critical sector and essential for the Commonwealth's ongoing success. Danville's robust business environment and talented workforce makes it an ideal home for Overfinch."

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Pittsylvania County Named Virginia’s Third Certified Work Ready Community

RICHMOND – Governor Terry McAuliffe announced today that Pittsylvania County has been designated as a Certified Work Ready Community (CWRC). The nationally recognized designation by the Commonwealth and American College Testing (ACT) will help Pittsylvania County attract new businesses and jobs as it signifies job ready skill sets of the county's high school students, job seekers, and incumbent workforce.

Speaking about the announcement, Governor Terry McAuliffe said, "Developing core workforce development skills is an essential component to building a world-class economy. I applaud Pittsylvania County for its leadership and continued efforts to prepare local workers for innovative, high-tech jobs. This certification is the foundation to attracting private sector investments that contribute to our efforts to build a new Virginia economy in every corner of the Commonwealth."

"Communities that prioritize the workforce readiness of their residents position themselves for economic growth," said Secretary of Commerce and Trade Maurice Jones. "I congratulate Pittsylvania County on their achievement, and I look forward to working with the county to promote their new certification.

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Governor McAuliffe Announces 15 New Jobs in Henry County

Alcoa to invest more than $8 million to expand manufacturing operation

RICHMOND - Governor Terry McAuliffe announced today that lightweight metals leader Alcoawill invest more than $8 million to expand its aerospace forging capabilities at its Alcoa Titanium & Engineered Products manufacturing operation in Henry County. The investment will add a new grinder and two new forge furnaces, doubling the facility's forging capacity and creating 15 new jobs paying above the average prevailing wage in the region. Alcoa expects to complete the expansion by the end of this year.

"Creating good jobs in key sectors like advanced manufacturing is at the very heart of our work to build a new Virginia economy in every region of the Commonwealth," said Governor McAuliffe. "This project represents the third manufacturing expansion in Henry County in 2016, which is a testament to the Commonwealth's business resources and infrastructure. I look forward to continuing to work with Alcoa to promote Virginia as a hub for advanced manufacturing and continued economic growth."

"This expansion is a tribute to the great team at Alcoa and the superior workforce infrastructure and business climate in the Henry County area," said Secretary of Commerce and Trade Maurice Jones. "Alcoa has been an excellent corporate partner, and we are thrilled that it will continue to grow within the Commonwealth."

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Governor McAuliffe Announces 32 New Jobs in Henry County

PerformanceLivestock and Feed Company, Inc. to Invest More Than $4 Million to Establish Feed Production Operation in Virginia

RICHMOND – Governor Terry McAuliffe announced today that North Carolina-based Performance Livestock and Feed Company, Inc., will invest $4.2 million to establish a new feed production operation in Henry County. The family-owned business will increase production by 50 percent over the next three years, and commit to purchasing nearly $11 million in Virginia-sourced grains and other feed ingredients. Virginia successfully competed against North Carolina for the project, which will create 32 new jobs.

"The investments made by Performance Livestock and Feed will increase feed production and create jobs and help bolster Virginia's reputation as one of the nation's leaders in quality and innovative livestock feed," said Governor McAuliffe. "I applaud Performance Livestock and Feed's commitment to growing its business here in Virginia, and I am pleased that the Commonwealth could support such an entrepreneurial project. Investments like this highlight the central role agriculture plays in building the new Virginia economy. " - See more at: https://governor.virginia.gov/newsroom/newsarticle?articleId=15630#sthash.t6e3W8QL.dpuf

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Governor McAuliffe Announces New Jobs, Investment in Pittsylvania County

Gregory Lumber, Inc. to Expand Sawmill Operation, Purchase Almost $8 Million  in Virginia Forest Products

RICHMOND – Governor Terry McAuliffe announced today that Gregory Lumber, Inc. will expand its sawmill operations in Pittsylvania County. The company will create three new jobs in the county and source 75 percent of its timber needs from Virginia land owners. Gregory Lumber will invest $3 million in construction and equipment needed to add an automated lumber sorting system that will increase production by 50 percent. 

"Partnering with a company like Gregory Lumber is a way my administration can support the growth of Virginia's forest products sector, one of Virginia's top private industries," said Governor McAuliffe. "Virginia's forestry industry supports thousands of good jobs in our rural communities and provides important market opportunities for the Commonwealth's private forestland owners. Gregory Lumber's new expansion will bring welcomed economic vitality to the region, further helping with my administration's efforts to build the new Virginia economy. I applaud the company's commitment to Java and continued investment in Pittsylvania County and Virginia."

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Governor McAuliffe Announces 68 New Jobs in Henry County

Starsprings to invest $3.7 million to establish first U.S. manufacturing operation

Governor Terry McAuliffe announced today that Starsprings, a privately-held spring and spring-unit manufacturer based in Sweden, will invest $3.7 million to establish its first U.S. manufacturing operation in Henry County. The company will supply mattress units used in long-distance trucking. Virginia successfully competed against North Carolina and Pennsylvania for the project, which will create 68 new jobs.

Speaking about today's announcement, Governor McAuliffe said, "This win is a great example of the kind of project we are trying to attract as we build a new Virginia economy. When an international company chooses Virginia as its entry point into the U.S. market, it is a strong testament to the competitiveness that sets the Commonwealth apart and the major companies here that attract suppliers. We are proud to add Starsprings to our corporate roster, and welcome 68 new, much-needed manufacturing jobs to Henry County."

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First Welding@SVHEC Completion Ceremony Held

It was a day of celebration as the first 15 students to enroll in the Southern Virginia Higher Education Center's (SVHEC) Welding program walked across the Prizery's stage to receive their certificates of completion. The completion ceremony marked the end of a journey started 16 months ago for these newly minted welders.

"Livelihoods and America are depending on you and your skills. Go out from here and make your impact on the world," said keynote speaker Leslie "Tyke" Tenney. Tenney is the executive director of Virginia Technical Institute, which serves as the official sponsor of the SVHEC's welding program.

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