Michigan Gov. Jennifer Granholm challenges the country to create 3 million jobs in three years with a Jobs Race to the Top. Under her leadership, Michigan is creating a new industry in electric cars – and has already projected to create 63,000 jobs.
She writes in a POLITICO op-ed: “If the states are the laboratories of democracy, Washington can take a lesson from what is happening in Michigan.”
As last week’s jobs numbers reminded us, emerging from the biggest economic crisis since the Great Depression isn’t going to be easy. We need to be creative and daring. We need a moon shot — a Jobs Race to the Top. The goal: Create 3 million jobs in three years.
It’s doable with an aggressive strategy. In Michigan, we are trying our own version of this race — focused on the lithium-ion advanced battery for electric cars, a high-tech product previously manufactured almost exclusively in Asia.
We offered irresistible state tax incentives for manufacturers of “advanced energy storage.” We pancaked our state incentives on top of the competitive federal Department of Energy grants to advanced-battery companies and suppliers. We also created robust public-private partnerships.
In just over a year, we have attracted 18 domestic and international companies, which are projected to create 63,000 private-sector jobs in Michigan. With breathtaking speed, we built an entire advanced-battery “ecosystem” for the purpose of electrifying the automobile.
If the states are the laboratories of democracy, Washington can take a lesson from what is happening in Michigan.