Last week, business, labor, and environmental leaders from across Michigan met with a representative from Senator Debbie Stabenow’s office to discuss Building STAR legislation and its vital importance for the State of Michigan.
Building STAR, a short term job creation proposal based around rebates and tax provisions for commercial building energy efficiency retrofits, would provide almost 6,000 jobs within Michigan’s construction and manufacturing industries, as well as up to 200,000 jobs nationwide in the next eighteen months.
Barbara McCallahan, the Director of Community Affairs and Regional Manager for Senator Stabenow, began the discussion by reading from a letter written by Senator Stabenow, a long-time supporter and cosponsor of Building STAR. The letter emphasized Building STAR’s short term job creation potential, which in Michigan, a state whose economy was struggling even before the current economic recession, was in the clear interest of the hard hit business and labor community leaders in attendance.
Labor leaders at the event spoke of the highly skilled but idle work force within Michigan that is trained and ready to work, but unable to find employment. Eager to boost jobs and sensing the urgency of the unemployment problem within Michigan, Senator Stabenow’s representative quelled fears about the state’s troubled economy by saying that the Senator understood the hardships her constituents were facing and was working hard to create jobs for the construction and manufacturing industries through programs like Building STAR.
Speaking as part of the round table discussion along with Barbara McCallahan was Greg Revard, Vice President of the International Association of Heat and Frost Insulators and Allied Workers; Jim Page, Testing Adjusting and Balancing Specialist with the International Training Institute; and Chris Kolb, President of the Michigan Environmental Council.
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