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 Feature Industry Articles 
Wednesday, November 20 2013
Green Development

by Kenneth Dobson

Tax Base Transformation/Diversification and Triple Green Bottom Line
As we go deeper into in the technology-driven 21st century global marketplace, we are beginning to discover that the gold standard for local economic development competitiveness and valuation is becoming its capacity to facilitate sustainable tax base revenue growth.

Sustainable tax base revenue growth will occur through the convergence and integration of diverse functions associated with triple green bottom line technologies, techniques, tools and strategies. By triple green bottom line, reference is simply being made to the growing importance of cultivating an organically conducive investment climate within which sustainable flows of revenue-generation/jobs-creation from business and real estate investments will naturally evolve.

Posted by: Nicole Cornett AT 09:44 am   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email
Tuesday, November 19 2013
Advanced Manufacturing

Bio: Jeannine Kunz is director of training and development for Tooling U-SME, where she leads a team  dedicated to the ongoing education of the manufacturing workforce. SME, a nonprofit organization, has served practitioners, companies, educators, government and communities across the manufacturing spectrum for more than 80 years.

Manufacturing in the U.S. is making a comeback. This is good news for the country, companies and workers.

One reason for this expansion is that American companies – faced with rising labor and transportation costs abroad – are increasingly moving their operations back home. This means businesses are searching for ideal locations for expansion or relocation to give them a competitive edge.

While traditional measures of a community’s business-friendly environment are based around tax rates, regulations and transportation options, one of the most important—and often overlooked—criteria is access to a talented workforce. Click here to view full story

Posted by: Nicole Cornett AT 07:49 pm   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email
Tuesday, November 19 2013

Bio: James MacDonald, USDA Economic Research Service
Branch Chief

Jim MacDonald is chief of the Agricultural Structure and Productivity branch. The branch is responsible for developing data and research measuring and explaining productivity growth in agriculture, assesses

the causes and effects of the changing structure and organization of U.S. farms, examines changes in business relationships between farms and their suppliers and buyers, and how those changes affect farm performance and government programs.

Cropland Consolidation and the Future of Family Farms

The average size of a U.S. crop farm has changed little during the past three decades. However, this seeming stability masks important structural changes in the farm sector including growing numbers of very small and very large farms and declining numbers of mid-sized arms. In the process, cropland acreage is moving toward much larger farms. The acreage shift is substantial and widespread and follows from developments in technology and in farm organization. Click here to view full story

Posted by: Nicole Cornett AT 01:53 pm   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email
Tuesday, November 19 2013
Oil, Gas and Coal

Smart Cogeneration & Refining Help Cities Compete

by Angelos Angelou, Floyd Akers, and Phillip P. Gennarelli

Natural gas fracking and other changes in the U.S. energy sector have provided a boom to oil and gas industries, especially in central Texas’ Eagleford shale. That boom is reverberating in small communities with non-competitive pricing models, pitting them against larger communities in the competition for new high energy consuming customers.

Whether you are a start-up wishing to participate in central Texas’ booming economy or a small Austin-based business seeking to expand, keeping utility costs down and profitability healthy is a constant battle and can make a difference between success and failure.

 One central Texas city without its own utility has found a way to use new technology and recent regulatory changes to compete successfully. By partnering with FirstPower Energy, the City of Pflugerville, Texas will be integrating traditional utility services into one of the first community smart multi-grid systems (SMGS) in Central Texas using smart cogeneration as an operating platform. Click here to view full story

Posted by: Nicole Cornett AT 11:44 am   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email
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