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ATHENS | Caterpillar to build plant, hire 1,400 people

ATHENS, Ga. - Caterpillar, with 5 Plants and 3,00 employees already in Georgia, will now  build a major new assembly and manufacturing plant to build small excavators and bulldozers.

They will hire 1,400 employees starting in January as painters, fabricators and assembly technicians for the Plant, which will open in late 2013.

The new Caterpillar plant will be built on a 780 acre industrial site in Bogart, just outside Athens at the intersection of Highways 316 (University Parkway) and 78, boarding on Clarke and Oconee Counties. 

The new facility in Georgia will become Caterpillar's global source for small track-type bulldozers and mini hydraulic excavators. The Assembly facility is being relocated to Georgia from Japan.

In making the announcement, Governor Nathan Deal tolde 11Alive that tax incentives certainly played a role in Caterpillar picking Georgia over neighboring states that competing for the facility.

UHY’s David Barton to Share Knowledge on Service Organization Audits February 14

UHY’s David Barton to Share Knowledge on Service Organization Audits February 14

Webinar will focus on data center audit standards and assessments

David Barton will address professional service organizations and their customers and lead a discussion on data center audit standards and assessments during a webinar Tuesday, February 14th from 2:00 – 3:00 p.m.

ATHENS | Residents split over proposed Walmart

ATHENS | Residents split over proposed Walmart

ATHENS, Ga. -- Athens residents are clashing over a plan for a new Walmart near downtown.

Some advocates are supporting the new project because they hope it will bring more jobs to the northeast Georgia city.

But critics point to several studies that show the employees the retail giant hire are offset by those who lose their jobs when competitors close up shop.

RELATED | Musicians fight planned Walmart with new video

The mixed-use project was the focus of a commission meeting this week.

The NAACP's Clarke County chapter voted to endorse the mixed-use project, and several influential black leaders have begun to speak out in favor of the development.

Critics counter by arguing that Athens needs to offer incentives to lure in better jobs than the ones that Walmart offers.

ATHENS | Musicians form to oppose Walmart store

ATHENS | Musicians form to oppose Walmart store

ATHENS, Ga. (AP) - Musicians connected to R.E.M., the Drive-By Truckers and other Georgia bands have created a song and video as part of an effort to stop a Walmart store from opening in Athens.

Atlanta-based Selig Enterprises is developing a proposed retail and residential center near downtown Athens. That has sparked debate over Wal-Mart, though no plans for such a store have been announced.

The Athens Banner-Herald reports that "After It's Gone" was written by Drive-By Truckers frontman Patterson Hood with collaboration from former R.E.M. musician Mike Mills.

Wal-Mart Stores Inc. spokesman Bill Wertz tells The Associated Press the company is not currently planning to open an Athens store. He said Wal-Mart has had preliminary talks with the developer of the Athens project, but the developer is also talking to other retailers.

ATHENS | Peanuts up, poultry down in 2012 farm forecast

ATHENS | Peanuts up, poultry down in 2012 farm forecast

ATHENS, Ga. -- Agriculture experts in Georgia say 2012 should shape up to be a good year for peanuts and pecans, but much tougher for producers of poultry -- the state's top commodity.

The predictions are part of the University of Georgia's annual farm forecast released Monday.

It says farmers face another year of dry weather and rising costs for seed and fertilizer.

Kent Wolfe, director of UGA's Center for Agribusiness and Economic Development, says one wild card is whether farmers will be hurt by a possible labor shortage triggered by Georgia's crackdown on illegal immigration, but it's too soon to tell.

RELATED | How has illegal immigration reform hit the ag industry?

SHOP LOCAL! Look for jars of Phickles Pickles

SHOP LOCAL! Look for jars of Phickles Pickles

 

365Atlanta believes in shopping locally and supporting Atlanta-area businesses. SHOP LOCAL! is our picks for local shopping picks for the holidays…and beyond!

Those of you who know me know my deep love for Phickles Pickles. Owner and Phickle Chickle, Angie Tillman and her husband, Phin, are the rock stars behind this Phickle-mania.  Click here to read the full story at 365Atlanta.com

ATHENS | Foreclosed homes to become affordable housing

ATHENS | Foreclosed homes to become affordable housing

ATHENS, Ga. -- A nonprofit group aims to convert a foreclosed and unfinished student-oriented development in Athens into housing for working-class residents.

The Athens Land Trust intends to finish the 15-lot, three-acre subdivision with a federal affordable housing grant, according to a report in the Athens Banner-Herald.

The land trust, which only recently ventured into new-home construction after years of renovating old houses, worked with the University of Georgia Center for Community Design and Preservation and neighborhood residents to choose the designs for the homes.

The two- and three-bedroom houses will sell for about $90,000.