Congressmen Conyers, Clarke Urge Action to Create Good American Jobs

Calling the need for action on job creation "urgent," Congressmen John Conyers and Hansen Clarke and local labor and environmental leaders joined together today at Detroit-based NextEnergy to urge the passage of the President's jobs plan.

November 9, 2011

Representatives Join Business, Labor & Environmental Leaders to Support President’s Plan & Clean Energy Policies Needed for Economic Revival in Detroit and U.S.

DETROIT, MI (November 9, 2011) Calling the need for action on job creation “urgent,” Congressmen John Conyers and Hansen Clarke, both of Michigan, and local labor and environmental leaders joined together today at Detroit-based NextEnergy to urge the passage of the President’s jobs plan, along with additional clean energy policies to encourage the creation of millions of good, jobs.

“We can create jobs in Michigan and around the country if we get to work on building the industries that will drive our economy now and in the future,” said Congressman Conyers. “Michigan — with our focus on renewable energy manufacturing and advanced vehicle technologies — is a great example of how building a cleaner, more efficient economy will jumpstart job creation and put people back to work.”

President Obama’s jobs plan includes critical investments in modernizing and renovating America’s public schools, transportation infrastructure, and deploying high-speed wireless Internet to at least 98 percent of Americans. Additional strategic policies and investments can spur the growth of renewable energy, energy efficiency, advanced auto manufacturing, recycling, green chemistry and smart grid will create jobs while ensuring that the U.S remains a leader in the global 21st century economy.

“The President’s jobs plan will invest in our nation’s infrastructure, including the modernization and renovation of public schools and more efficient roads, railways, transit and highway systems,” said Congressman Clarke. “We need to pass this jobs plan, and we need to ensure that Michigan and the United States lead the 21st century global clean energy economy.”

A key component of the President’s jobs plan is to modernizing and renovating 35,000 public schools. In Michigan, the President’s plan would invest $926 million — $346 million in Detroit — and create an estimated 12,000 jobs. The U.S. Green Building Council reports that modern, green schools, can save $100,000 per year on operating costs — enough to hire at least one new teacher, buy 200 new computers, or purchase 5,000 textbooks. High performance, green schools also use 33 percent less energy and 32 percent less water than other schools.

“Michigan has great students, teachers and staff and we need to be sure that our schools are just as great so that we can provide safe, healthy learning environments,” said Hecker. “We can create good jobs — as many as 12,000 of them — by making these investments now, and we can ensure that our kids are prepared for a 21st century economy.”

Miguel Foster, Director of Civil and Human Rights for the United Auto Workers, said critical investments in the development and production of more fuel-efficient vehicles has helped revitalize a struggling auto industry in Michigan.

“Recently proposed fuel efficiency standards, along with investments in advanced vehicle technology, will create more than 30,000 jobs in Michigan,” said Foster. “We also need to create and drive more programs like the Advanced Technology Vehicle Manufacturing program, which has already created 40,000 auto industry jobs throughout the country. These initiatives will help us build a thriving, domestic industry and ensure that the U.S. leads the world in the production of fuel-efficient vehicles.”

Jim Harrison, president of the local 223 of the Utility Workers Union of America, noted that the President’s plan, The American Jobs Act, would expand high-speed wireless Internet to 98 percent of Americans and that the expansion of a modern interstate power grid will create jobs while more efficiently delivering clean energy.

“To make our economy more efficient, we have to make the delivery of energy more efficient, and doing so will create jobs,” said Harrison.

Jobs21! is a nationwide, grassroots initiative of the BlueGreen Alliance for good jobs in the 21st century economy. The Jobs21! Blueprint for Solving the Jobs Crisis outlines critical policies and strategic investments in the industries that will drive our domestic economy and create jobs, including renewable energy, energy efficiency, modern transportation, recycling, green chemistry, smart grid and broadband Internet.

“Both the President’s plan and Jobs21! will reduce energy waste and pollution,” said Anne Woiwode, State Director of the Sierra Club Michigan Chapter. “Moving Michigan forward to a cleaner, more efficient economy will create jobs and ensure we leave a better environment for future generations.”