Thursday, April 14, 2005

Clinton, Rendell, Kvaerner, and $1 Billion Dollars

As reported by KYW radio, former president Bill Clinton and former Mayor and now Governor Ed Rendell were in town today for the announcement of a $1 billion, 10-ship deal at the Kvaerner shipyard. Before Kvaerner, the former Philadelphia Navy Yard had gone three decades without a constructing a new ship. Ten double-hulled ships (pursuant to new environmental safety regulations) are to be fabricated, guaranteeing over 1,000 jobs through 2010 and could possibly generate 5,000 jobs in service/trade businesses that support the facility. Reviving the shipbuilding industry in Philadelphia was fueled by an infusion of hundreds of millions of Federal and State economic development funding; cynics and realists alike thought this might be too much. While hindsight is certainly 20/20 and nobody should gloat about the fabulous success of this revival initiative, it should be an inspiration to the Philadelphia region and others who would bring back manufacturing jobs to a city that used to be known as the “workshop of the world.”

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