I am deeply humbled and honored to represent the interest of the people living in District Four of Hamilton County. Among my primary reasons for serving in public life is to promote the creation of new jobs and also to create an environment where men and women can invest their money and grow their business. When you drive around anywhere in Hamilton County you will see an abundance of new houses, developments and a host of new companies located here. Two weeks ago we made some decisions that will be felt by Hamilton County for a long time.
One of those major decisions made by the Hamilton County Commission was to get PUREgraphite to set up shop here in Hamilton County. PUREgraphite will acquire the 385,000 square foot former Alstom facility (also known as “Big Blue”) located on Riverfront Parkway where they will build their facility. This factory will be one that will manufacture synthetic graphite for use in lithium-ion battery production.
PUREgraphite is a subsidiary of Novonix and is expected to create three hundred jobs with the annual salary being $42.000.00. The capital investment of PUREgraphite will be $150,000,000
One major reason that this project is so important is because the automobile industry is moving to a battery platform. Volkswagen, like other auto makers have announced that their entire fleet would become battery powered.
A second major action taken by the County Commission is the purchase of the McDonald Farm. This site will become a major industrial park where new factories and plants can be located. The McDonald Farm contains 2170 acres and the purchase price was sixteen million dollars. With this purchase Hamilton County can continue to attract new jobs coming into the county. Enterprise South is essentially full; there are no more sites there where the future Amazons, Gestamp, Volkswagen can be built.
A third action taken by the Hamilton County Commission on this date was in helping to create a new vocational/industrial school. This school which is located in Commissioner Mackey’s district at the old Mary Ann Garber school in Avondale community. Forever and a day residents in Hamilton County have called out for a Kirkman-like school where the trades and vocations can be taught. We were told that 100 percent of the graduates would have jobs upon graduation. The trades taught would be those like brick masonry, welding and other like trades. This school will be a collaborative enterprise wherein the city of Chattanooga, the Associated General Contractors, Chattanooga State, Hamilton County Board of Education, the Chamber, and the Hamilton County Commission.