Subscription Preferences:
3 months ago

More details about Google’s $600M Alabama data center

Internet giant Google this week officially launched construction of a $600 million data center in Alabama with a groundbreaking ceremony at the site in Jackson County. The project will create as many as 100 full-time jobs and create massive economic ripples.

Google said the data center in Bridgeport will be a hub for Internet traffic, fitting into a network that keeps the company’s search engine and its other internet-based products functioning around the clock. The project was formally announced in June 2015.

“Google is committed to investing in Jackson County to create new economic and educational opportunities for the people of Alabama and the surrounding region.” said Dr. Nan Boden, senior director and head of Global Technology Partners for Google Cloud. “As a native Alabamian, I am so proud to be part of the effort to bring this Google data center to life in the coming months and years.”

Google’s data center in Jackson County will become Alabama’s first large-scale data center. The company said the center will create between 75 and 100 highly technical jobs, with potential for growth in the future.

“As one of the world’s most dynamic and innovative technology companies, Google’s products touch billions of people across the globe every single day,” Governor Kay Ivey said. “We’re proud that Alabama is playing an important role in Google’s future growth, and we look forward to seeing this data center operation help power that growth.”

She added: “When Google was searching for its next location, I’m glad they found Alabama.”

MASSIVE IMPACT

Google is constructing the data center on 360 acres adjacent to the old Widows Creek coal-fired power plant, which was decommissioned in 2015 by the Tennessee Valley Authority after decades of operation. TVA is working with Google to provide renewable energy to fully match the facility’s power usage.

Google also said its Jackson County data center will feature state-of-the-art energy efficiency. The Alabama facility will become its 14th data center globally and the eighth in the U.S.

“This is a big day for Bridgeport because it helps our city in many different ways,” Mayor David “Bubba” Hughes said. “Having Google in our community will bring us great jobs and offer real opportunities for our young people. Google is a generous supporter of schools, and the company’s presence will help us recruit other high-tech companies.

“No doubt about it — this a game-changer for us.”

The data center project is expected to have a massive economic impact on the area and add a new dimension to Jackson County’s economy, which today has a heavy concentration of manufacturers producing items ranging from carpets to auto parts.

“Google is a company that has an international reputation for excellence. This particular project has so much meaning not only for Jackson County but also for the state of Alabama,” said Greg Canfield, secretary of the Alabama Department of Commerce. “The Google footprint, initially at $600 million, is an incredible commitment to establishing and expanding the company’s internet capabilities.

“What is really going to be more important is the future of Google in Alabama because we hope this is just the beginning.”

MARKING A MILESTONE

Google said it selected the Jackson County site because it offered the right combination of energy infrastructure and developable land. In addition, both state and local officials worked very hard to forge a partnership with the company and advance the data center project.

“I’m thrilled to join with Google today as they break ground on their data center in Jackson County,” said U.S. Rep. Mo Brooks (R-Huntsville). “It’s great to see companies like Google recognize what we in the Tennessee Valley have known all along — that we have a tremendous pool of talent in Northern Alabama and that this is a wonderful place to live and work.”

As part of its commitment to local communities, Google also announced onsite that it would be donating $100,000 to the Jackson County School District for the growth and development of the region’s student STEM programs.

Repurposing the Widows Creek site and committing to match 100 percent of their electricity consumption at the Alabama data center with renewable energy purchases reflects Google’s longtime leadership on renewable energy. The company was one of the first to begin buying renewables on a large scale in 2010 and achieved 100 percent renewable energy for its operations in 2017.

“The milestone we celebrate today is the result of government, business and community leaders working together with TVA to bring good jobs and quality investment to our region,” TVA president and CEO Bill Johnson said.

“Google’s newest facility on the site of TVA’s former fossil plant at Widows Creek ensures that this storied location continues to be a landmark for technology and economic development for the people of North Alabama.

(Courtesy of Made in Alabama)

32 mins ago

Man arrested in connection to triple murder in Alabama

Police say a man has been arrested in connection to a triple murder in Alabama.

Guntersville Police told WAFF-TV that 52-year-old Jimmy O’Neal Spencer was arrested Tuesday on four counts of capital murder.

76

The bodies of 74-year-old Marie Kitchens Martin and her 7-year-old great-grandson, Colton Ryan Lee, were found in a home on Friday, and 65-year-old neighbor Martha Reliford in her home.

Spencer was taken to the Marshall County Jail.

The body of a missing man, James Michael Baker, was found near the crime scene. Investigators have not determined his death to be connected.

(Associated Press, copyright 2018)

Sign-up now for our daily newsletter and never miss another article from Yellowhammer News.

3 hours ago

President Trump congratulates Rep. Martha Roby on her runoff victory

President Trump took to Twitter Wednesday to congratulate Rep. Martha Roby in her House District 2 primary runoff victory against former District 2 congressman Bobby Bright.

Trump expressed that his endorsement contributed to Roby’s “landslide victory.”

168

There were questions, particularly among national news commentators, about whether Roby would be able to overcome the stigma of de-endorsing President Trump in the 2016 election, but his support for her put that question largely to bed.

“I’m honored and humbled that the people of Alabama’s Second District have again placed their trust and confidence in me, and that I will have the opportunity to continue to do this job on their behalf,” Roby said in a statement, in part. “On behalf of my family and me, thank you to each person who went out to the polls today to support me.”

“Over the last year and a half, it’s been a great privilege to be a part of the conservative momentum and to work alongside my colleagues in Congress and the Trump Administration to push some very important priorities over the finish line. We are in a unique position to accomplish even more, and I’m eager to continue the fight,” she also said.

Roby faces Democrat Tabitha Isner in November.

4 hours ago

Rex Lumber Co. to build new facility, bring more than 100 jobs to Alabama

A lumber company is investing $110 million in a new facility in Alabama’s Pike County, bringing more than 100 new jobs.

WSFA-TV reports Rex Lumber Co. announced Tuesday at a groundbreaking ceremony that the new facility will be located 5 miles (8 kilometers) north of Troy in the Harmony Community. It expects to employ around 110 people.

49

Officials say the Southern Yellow Pine sawmill is expected to be operation by June 2019.

Currently, Rex Lumber Co. operates sawmills in Graceville and Bristol, Florida. They also have a site in Brookhaven, Mississippi.

(Associated Press, copyright 2018)

Sign-up now for our daily newsletter and never miss another article from Yellowhammer News.

About last night: Three takeaways from Alabama’s Runoff Election

With Alabama’s primary election runoffs now in the books, here are three takeaways from the results.

North Alabama has spoken.
When this election cycle began, it became evident that north Alabama saw a window of opportunity to increase its influence.  The results from the Republican primary runoff have shown the electorate in that area of the state was eager to flex its muscle.

Will Ainsworth pulled out an impressive come-from-behind victory in the Lt. Governor’s race. Steve Marshall enjoyed a resounding win in his bid to retain the Attorney General’s office.

371

Both candidates hail from Marshall County and both effectively energized their bases in the Fourth and Fifth Congressional Districts. This is particularly evident when you look at their margins of victory in those north Alabama counties compared to the performances of their opponents in their own base counties. Ainsworth and Marshall won big at home.

With Ainsworth and Marshall the presumptive winners in November (more on that below), north Alabama could have the Speaker of the House, the Lt. Governor and the Attorney General in positions of power.

Keep an eye on this dynamic in the 2020 race for the U.S. Senate.

Democrats?
Several months ago, a fashionable narrative developed among some that Democrats were going to move the needle in November 2018. In fairness to the delusional, much of this was borne out of the bizarre circumstances surrounding the Moore-Jones election.

However, these runoff elections are a culmination of months now during which no one is seriously talking about Democrats — let alone their chances in November.

Even the ultra-liberal New York Times, which is an arm of the Democratic Party, posted this statement as part of its updated Alabama primary election results on June 11:

“In deep-red Alabama, the Republican primary almost certainly determined the general election winner.”

Democrat candidates up and down the ballot — from Walt Maddox in the Governor’s race to Democrat legislators like Johnny Mack Morrow — will tilt at their windmills. But they won’t be able to escape Nancy Pelosi and their own party’s dysfunction.

Expect big Republican wins in November.

It’s time to change Alabama’s runoffs.
South Carolina holds their runoffs three weeks after the primary. Alabama puts six weeks between its primary and its runoff.

In South Carolina’s top race, there were only 24,000 fewer votes in the runoff than there were in the primary. That was only a 6.5% decrease.

In Alabama’s top runoff race, there was a nearly 200,000 total vote difference between the primary and the runoff. That’s a 37.5% decrease in participation. Undoubtedly, those three extra weeks, which bring the runoff deep into the summer, contribute significantly to voter apathy.

South Carolina has established an efficient process for handling military absentee ballots within its three-week runoff. Alabama should do the same.

The Yellowhammer Multimedia Executive Board is comprised of owners of the company.

5 hours ago

7 Things: Trump backtracks on trusting Putin, election results, new permanent tax cuts, and more …

1. President Donald Trump backtracks and tells an absurd lie 

— After stating he believes Vladimir Putin over his own intelligence officials, President Trump backtracked. He received intense criticism from within his own party, from Democrats and from a deranged media.

— In a statement read by the president of the United States, and believed by no one, he states, “The sentence should’ve been: ‘I don’t see any reason why it wouldn’t be Russia.'”

2. And the winners are…

453

— Attorney General Steve Marshall crushes former AG Troy King in a race that wasn’t even close.  Marshall will face former Democrat AG and Governor’s son Joseph Siegelman.

— State Rep. Will Ainsworth squeaks by in the Lt. Gov. race, barely beating the more well-known candidate Twinkle Cavanaugh to be the odds-on on favorite to win the job in November. (Quick: Who is the Democrat candidate for Lt. Gov.?)

3. New tax cuts

— A second round of tax cuts, and a move to make the tax cuts permanent, are being discussed by the White House and Congressional Republicans. The fact they expired was a major part of the complaints by Democrats on the issue.

— Democrats, who still don’t want tax cuts, have filed a frivolous lawsuit with the federal government because blue states taxes are so high and the 1st round of tax cuts capped deductions on state taxes that could be deducted.

4. Toyota CEO continues to sound the alarm on Trump’s tariffs and how they will impact Alabama

— Toyota Motor Manufacturing Alabama President wrote that a 25% tariff on foreign automobiles will have a devastating impact on manufacturing.

— This is exactly the argument Kay Ivey made earlier this summer when she said, “Import tariffs, and any retaliatory tariffs on American made goods, will harm Alabama, the companies that have invested billions of dollars in our state, and the thousands of households, which are dependent upon those companies for a good-paying job.”

5. After a hate-love relationship with Trump, Congresswoman Martha Roby survives in Alabama’s only real contested Congressional race

— Roby absolutely destroyed former Democrat turned Republican Bobby Bright. Bright was possibly the worst GOP primary candidate if the goal is to point out the divisions in the GOP because he has a vote for Nancy Pelosi on his resume.

— The “can she overcome talking bad about Trump?” narrative should die — it will not.

6. More details emerge about Governor Bentley’s past and present with Rebekah Caldwell Mason

— Bentley continues to deny the affair with his former aide was sexual, which really stretches the bounds of believability.

— The former governor’s love-interest is apparently still working with Bentley at his dermatology office in Tuscaloosa. She is not listed in the staff section of the website.

7. There is a silly notion working its way through the media and Democrats that anyone upset with Trump’s comments must abandon the GOP

—  A Republican Party county chairman in Ohio resigned on Monday after watching President Donald Trump’s press conference with Vladimir Putin, calling it a “matter of conscience”

— While this continues to be a theme, many Republicans continue to support the GOP because as I wrote for Yellowhammer yesterday, “The economy matters, the Supreme Court matters, controlling our borders matters”.