The state's largest business advocacy group is lauding what President Donald Trump is calling an "America First Tax Relief Plan." Indiana Chamber of Commerce Chief Executive Officer Kevin Brinegar said the plan, which includes corporate tax cuts, makes the kinds of changes to the country's tax structure that the organization has been calling for "for some time." Brinegar and some 100 Hoosier business leaders were in Washington D.C. last week lobbying the Indiana Delegation to "work toward a revenue-neutral, comprehensive reform of the federal tax code." In an interview with Inside INdiana Business, Brinegar said he's cautiously optimistic reforms that are "so desperately needed" will get done in Congress. Trump said the changes are overdue.

Support for Sunday alcohol sales

The Indiana Association of Beverage Retailers is once again showing its support for legislation to allow Sunday alcohol sales. The reaffirmation comes as the state's Alcohol Code Revision Commission is in the midst of hearings reviewing Indiana's alcohol laws.

Developers host Terre Haute Lofts tour

Indianapolis-based Core Redevelopment hosted an open house Thursday at the former American Can facility in Terre Haute, which is undergoing a $20 million transformation. Plans call for the Riverfront Lofts to include 166 apartments with views of the Wabash River, downtown Terre Haute and the Indiana State University campus.

Battery maker rebounding

The chief executive officer of Indianapolis-based EnerDel Inc. said the company is transitioning to profitability this year for the first time in its history. Mike Canada, who took the helm at the lithium-ion battery manufacturer shortly after its parent predecessor Ener1 filed for bankruptcy in 2012, said EnerDel has been "right-sizing" ever since. The company is backed by an exclusive agreement with Indianapolis-based Allison Transmission Holdings Inc. and deals with municipalities like Washington D.C. and Seattle to power public transit. 

Cook, Bloomington agree on non-annexation

Bloomington-based Cook Group Inc. has agreed to pay its home city $100,000 per year to prevent company-owned land from being annexed. The agreement in lieu of taxes will cover 15 years. The city says the arrangement was a "significant factor" in the company's plans to invest more than $100 million into an expansion at an old General Electric site and adding more than 500 jobs over the next decade.

Cummins targets advanced combat engines

Columbus-based Cummins Inc. has received a more than $47 million contract to develop an improved combat vehicle engine. The work from the National Advanced Mobility Consortium involves boosting the mobility, power, range and fuel economy of engines compared to current technology. Cummins is partnering with California-based Achates Power Inc. on what Vice President of Corporate Research and Technology Wayne Eckerle says will "create the most advanced combat vehicle powertrains for our Armed Forces."

Crane leaders discuss innovation

Officials from Naval Surface Warfare Center Crane Division, along with other state leaders, met Wednesday in Washington with representatives from the Office of the Vice President and the Office of Science & Technology Policy. Crane officials said the purpose of the meeting was to highlight the innovation ecosystem in southern Indiana.

Ground-breaking at former Coke plant

Officials in Fort Wayne have begun construction on the $14.5 million Bottle Works Lofts project. The development will include the rehabilitation of the former Coca-Cola bottling plant, which will be transformed into 31 affordable rental units.

Elkhart-Goshen GDP growth among highest

Recently released figures show the Elkhart-Goshen metropolitan area is one of the fastest-growing in terms of gross domestic product in the country. The Bureau of Economic Analysis says the Elkhart-Goshen metro area notched a $15.5 billion annual GDP in 2016, compared to a 2015 figure of $14.4 billion. In an interview with Inside INdiana Business Television last month, Greater Elkhart Chamber of Commerce Chief Executive Officer Kyle Hannon said the surging recreational vehicle industry is fueling economic growth.

Ruoff puts name on concert venue

One of the most high-profile concert venues in the state has a new name. The 24,000-seat Noblesville amphitheater, owned by Live Nation Entertainment Inc. and formerly known as Klipsch Music Center, is now known as Ruoff Home Mortgage Music Center. The Fort Wayne-based lender is experiencing rapid growth and currently runs more than 30 branches in Indiana, Ohio, Michigan and Florida. Live Nation Senior Vice President of Venue Sales told Inside INdiana Business having an Indiana-based sponsor is important.

GE wraps-up campus sale

The $5.5 million sale by General Electric of its former Fort Wayne campus is complete. RTM Ventures, the redevelopment group made up of partners from Baltimore, Indianapolis and Decatur, could begin remediation efforts by year's end. Plans for the more than 30-acre campus include some $300 million in development funded through public and private investment.

Production ends at Rexnord

This week was the final week of production at Wisconsin-based Rexnord Corp.'s Indianapolis plant. Dozens of employees are working their final day today, as a result of the company moving work to Mexico and laying off more than 300 employees.

Marsh to sell remaining assets

Indianapolis-based Marsh Supermarkets LLC has announced plans to sell its remaining intellectual property assets and alcohol beverage permits. The company, which filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection in May, said it will accept bids through mid-October.

Lumina supporting 'Talent Hubs'

The Indianapolis-based Lumina Foundation has detailed a national program that designates 17 communities as Talent Hubs. The education-focused nonprofit will provide nearly $6 million in grants to help the communities attract, retain and cultivate student talent in populations it said are critical to boosting the country's higher education attainment level. Columbus is the only Indiana community selected to participate. Chief Executive Officer Jamie Merisotis said employers play a key role for the hubs.

Demo work starts in Fishers

Site demolition is underway at The Yard, a $40 million food and entertainment district in Fishers. Plans call for up to 14 restaurants, a culinary accelerator, central gathering space and a hotel. During an interview last month on Inside INdiana Business Television, Mayor Scott Fadness discussed how the development can help attract business.

Purdue opens design center

Purdue University is celebrating the opening of a facility it says will become a magnet for innovation. The $18.5 million Bechtel Innovation Design Center seeks to give students, staff and faculty a place to advance their ideas toward commercialization.

Colleges tout higher enrollment

Two colleges in Indiana are reporting increased enrollment. Trine University said 2017 is the fourth consecutive year of record attendance at its main campus in Angola, education centers and global partnership campus. Saint Mary-of-the-Woods College said new student enrollment jumped 45 percent, compared to last year.

Makerspace aimed at enabling innovation

The SHAK Makerspace cut the ribbon this week on a more prominent location in Kokomo's evolving downtown. Mayor Greg Goodnight said the facility matches well with the types of residents the city is trying to attract downtown to fill hundreds of new apartments and condos. SHAK Makerspace, he said, offers "that space to keep their creative skills active." Goodnight was joined on Inside INdiana Business Television by SHAK Makerspace President Nancy Braun, and said he will proclaim Kokomo is a "Maker City" during today's ceremonies.

FedEx adding 2,000 holiday jobs

FedEx Corp. is looking to hire 2,000 people in Indianapolis ahead of the holiday season. The company said the jobs include permanent part-time package handlers and other support positions.

Wabash National completes acquisition

Lafayette-based Wabash National Corp. has completed the acquisition of Goshen-based Supreme Industries Inc. The deal, which had a $364 million equity value, will make Supreme a subsidiary of Wabash National.

Indy Amazon task force adds co-chairs

The task force leading the effort to bring Amazon.com Inc.'s second U.S. headquarters to central Indiana has named several new co-chairs. The group includes leaders from both the public and private sectors working to attract the facility that could bring with it 50,000 jobs.

IU Partnership targets precision medicine

Indiana University, the Regenstrief Institute and Indianapolis-based LifeOmic are partnering on an effort to advance personalized medicine. As part of the collaboration, LifeOmic, founded by noted Indianapolis entrepreneur Don Brown, will have a blanket license for a broad range of intellectual property owned by IU and Regenstrief.

Purdue Polytechnic to launch CareerMaker

Purdue Polytechnic Institute has selected the Westgate Crane Technology Park to launch its CareerMaker program. The institute said the goal of the effort is to help businesses "develop and maintain the workforces they need" through consultation, education, workshops and other resources.

Building permits rise statewide

The Indiana Builders Association said single-family building permits rose 7 percent in August. The organization said 1,502 permits were issued throughout the state, up from 1,398 during the same month last year.

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