Area Development magazine announced the winners of its 2013 Gold and Silver Shovel Awards. Four states ‚Äì Alabama, Georgia, Kansas and Texas, won Gold Shovels for economic development projects they undertook in 2012.
The $304 million Apple, Inc. project in Austin, Texas which created 3,635 jobs was named as the best project of the year.
AD magazine cited Alabama‚Äôs success in luring companies making planes, ships and cars. They mention the 2,000 jobs created by the Airbus and Austal USA projects in Mobile, along with another 900 Hyundai jobs.
Alabama Governor Robert Bentley said it was rewarding to see their work in making Alabama the best place for doing business recognized by Area Development.
AD magazine annually asks all 50 states to submit their top 10 projects in terms of job creation and investment. Only projects which began to materialize in the past year are considered.
The Shovel Award winners are those states which get the highest weighted scores based on factors including industry diversity, jobs added per capita, investment amounts and new facilities added.
Geraldine Gambale, editor of Area Development, said that the states receiving Shovel Awards this year deserved the special recognition for their efforts in attracting new businesses and helping existing corporate citizens expand.
The Silver Shovel winners are divided into four categories based on their size. Among states with a population of 10 million or more, the three winners were California, Florida and Pennsylvania.
Florida Governor Rick Scott said the award highlights the work they have done in making Florida‚Äôs business climate the best in the nation.
Florida Secretary of Commerce Gray Swoope, who serves as president and CEO of Enterprise Florida, added that the award speaks to the EFI business development team‚Äôs dedication and their relentless pursuit of competitive projects.
Kish Rajan, director of GO-Biz ‚Äì the California Governor‚Äôs Office of Business and Economic Development, said that the award demonstrated California‚Äôs on-going ability to create quality jobs in a wide array of industries.
The $300 million Samsung Semiconductor expansion in San Jose, CA which created 2,000 jobs was recognized by AD magazine as the second best project last year. Other cited projects in the Golden State include Amazon, Caterpillar and Sutter health.
GO-Biz Deputy Director for Business Investment Services Leslie McBride said that these projects were prime examples of public-private partnerships between GO-Biz, its regional partners and the private sector to bring new jobs to California.
See the full list of 2013 Area Development Gold and Silver Shovel Award winners.