Archive for March, 2016

Initiative can create green jobs in Atlanta

Tuesday, March 29th, 2016

A new citywide initiative might create green jobs in Atlanta.

The Office of Sustainability has created a taskforce to research and investigate safety considerations and policies for future Controlled Environment Agriculture, a technology-based farming practice which takes place within enclosed structures.

The effort will encourage the production of more local fruits and vegetables. The 21-member taskforce consists of members of the Atlanta City Council, the non-profit community, academia, environmental stakeholders and local farmers.

The taskforce will meet on a monthly basis and determine where Controlled Environment Agriculture is permitted in Atlanta, the safety best practices and policies incorporated by other cities and the economic impact of this form of agriculture, as well as identify potential environmental risks and ways to mitigate these risks. After the taskforceevaluates Controlled Environment Agriculture in Atlanta, a toolkit consisting of five focus areas analyzing safety considerations will be available to influence practices and policy.

“Controlled Environment Agriculture is quickly gaining momentum in the City of Atlanta and all across the country because of the growers’ ability to grow food in urban environments including parking lots, urban rooftops, and indoors,” said Mario Cambardella, Director of Urban Agriculture. “Local governments have an important role in investigating safety considerations and clarifying regulations for this form of agriculture. This taskforce allows the City of Atlanta to collectively work with stakeholders to realize the best policies and procedures to ensure the safety, health, and welfare is protected for all.”

“Controlled Environment Agriculture is an emerging market in Atlanta and can provide locally-grown food to residents, reduce our reliance on imported foods, create green jobs and bolster the local economy,” said Stephanie Stuckey Benfield, Director of the Mayor’s Office of Sustainability. “Creating this taskforce demonstrates our commitment to realize our Power to Change sustainability goal which will bring local, healthy food within a half-mile of 75 percent of all Atlanta residents by the year 2020.”

Initiative boosts Atlanta jobs

Thursday, March 10th, 2016

A new initiative is helping to boost Atlanta jobs for women.

About 15 women entrepreneurs who will comprise the inaugural class of the Women’s Entrepreneurship Initiative (WEI). The group of women, selected through a rigorous competitive process in the fall of 2015, will have the opportunity to operate their small businesses in an incubator environment, with designated workspace, for 15 months. The announcement was made during the State of the City Address.

WEI will provide:

  • A designated workspace in a technologically-advanced environment, designed to foster business growth and sustainability;
  • A community designed to support engagement, interaction and collaboration with fellow women entrepreneurs in a supportive environment;
  • A network of expert, seasoned mentors and consultants from the business and entrepreneurship communities serving in an advisory board capacity;
  • Technology resources via the Microsoft partnership to amplify the businesses’ traction and global reach;
  • Measurable business growth and progress metrics to identify, track and harness success; and
  • Post-incubation support to reinforce business longevity and success once back in the community.

The initiative serves to empower emerging entrepreneurs with access to the critical assets, capital and resources necessary to launch, grow and sustain their businesses. A diverse group of women entrepreneurs, embodying the City’s unique diversity of racial, ethnic and socioeconomic factors, were selected for the 2016-2017 incubator class. Thirty-five high-potential women were selected from among 83 completed written applications, to advance to the “pitch round” of the competition, in which they presented their business models to be considered to participate in the WEI incubator.

The businesses are all for-profit, and represent the following industries and number of corresponding businesses:

  • Information and Communication Technology – 4
  • Product-based Retail – 3
  • Digital Media and Marketing – 2
  • Education and Training – 2
  • Beauty and Healthcare – 2
  • Transportation technology – 1
  • Food and Beverage Service – 1

City creates Atlanta law enforcement jobs

Tuesday, March 8th, 2016

The city is busy creating Atlanta law enforcement jobs.

The Atlanta Police Department is proud to announce the graduation of Class #242 to be held at City Hall Council Chambers.

The keynote speaker for the ceremony is Mr. Mark Winne, WSB-TV Investigative Reporter.

Mr. Winne is known for his unique style of reporting, ability to get exclusive interviews as well as covering crime and corruption stories.

With more than 30 years in the industry, he’s considered a staple in Atlanta news. He has helped WSB-TV break many of Georgia’s biggest stories.

Mr. Winne’s print and broadcast work have been honored with numerous professional and civic awards, including a number of Southern Regional Emmys. His coverage of a series of mail bombings which killed a federal judge and a civil rights attorney led to the publication of his book on the case, “Priority Mail” (Scribner, 1995.)

Class #242 consists of 29 new officers and is reflective of the citizens of Atlanta with African-American, Caucasian and Hispanic ethnicities.

The class is comprised of 24 men and 5 women. Eleven of the new officers have military experience, including a former Green Beret. Many new officers make policing their second career. This class has graduates who previously worked as a pastor, a truck driver and a school teacher.

Three of the new officers are following in their father’s shoes by becoming Atlanta Police Officers.

Shopping center to create Atlanta hospitality jobs

Tuesday, March 8th, 2016

A new shopping center will create more Atlanta hospitality jobs.

The Moores Mill Shopping Center will include a Publix grocery store and 9,000 square feet of retail space in its initial phase. The development is projected to create up to 200 construction-related jobs and as many as 300 permanent jobs.

Mayor Kasim Reed celebrated the groundbreaking of the Moores Mill Shopping Center with Jodie McLean, CEO of project developer EDENS, Herbert Ames, Vice President of EDENS in the Southeast and Dr. Eloisa Klementich, President and CEO of Invest Atlanta in a ceremony held yesterday. EDENS will make a $95 million investment in the shopping center.

“This groundbreaking marked a great day for the City of Atlanta,” said Mayor Reed. “Through the City’s collaboration with EDENS, Invest Atlanta and the U.S. Congress, we are able to move forward on this important project, which will bring $95 million in investment to this corridor now, and additional investment for decades to come.”

EDENS expects to open the initial phase of the development in June 2017. In addition, EDENS will donate $100,000 to fund improvements to Sara J. Gonzalez Park, located adjacent to the Moores Mill shopping center. The park was named in honor of Sara J. Gonzalez in 2009, following her death in 2008. Gonzalez was a pillar in Atlanta’s Hispanic community for more than two decades, and the park is the first in Georgia to be named after a Hispanic leader.

“This project took a lot of collaboration and dedication. EDENS is grateful to everyone who helped get us to this day, Mayor Reed, Councilmember Moore, our partners and most especially this community. We are excited for the path ahead and the neighborhood we will build together,” said Jodie McLean, CEO of EDENS.

The City of Atlanta will work in partnership with EDENS to complete the Moores Mill Road extension, which will alleviate traffic issues at the intersection of Moores Mill and Bolton roads. Invest Atlanta has allocated $500,000 of funds through the Perry Bolton TAD for the road extension.

“Invest Atlanta is dedicated to supporting catalytic projects that stimulate vibrant and viable communities,” said Dr. Eloisa Klementich, CEcD, President and CEO of Invest Atlanta. “The Moores Mill project is a great example of such an investment. This project supports not only a sustainable community but also promotes economic growth, improves residential – retail options and provides for new employment opportunities.”