Secretary Gary Locke today announced the opening of a
permanent CommerceConnect office in Pontiac,
Mich., during his visit to ALTe, a southeastern
technology company that offers electric and hybrid propulsion system
alternatives for the vehicle transportation industry and is experiencing
substantial growth through innovation in the alternative energy industry. Locke
spoke with local businesses about the new office and the Commerce Department’s
collaboration with state and local partners to continue the one-stop initiative
he first unveiled in June 2009 that brings department and other federal, state
and local programs under one roof in an effort to help businesses at every point
of their life cycle. U.S. Rep. Gary Peters joined Locke for the announcement.
Locke also announced an official partnership between the
department and Michigan-based non-profit The MORE Program, bringing state and
local government, business organizations, educational institutions and private
foundations together to connect innovators, entrepreneurs, and businesses with
the resources needed to grow and flourish.
“When we launched the pilot phase of CommerceConnect
last year, we had one goal in mind: to streamline government bureaucracy and
bring services and solutions directly to the businesses and entrepreneurs who
are creating and sustaining jobs,” Locke said. “With today’s announcement, we
are giving CommerceConnect a permanent home in the Detroit area because we know
that Main Street business owners should be spending their time working to grow
their businesses, meet payroll, and keep their customers happy, not trying to
navigate federal bureaucracies.”
Locke opened the CommerceConnect pilot
office in Plymouth last October. Since opening its doors,
the pilot has served over 90 companies, providing 199 referrals to 10 different
Commerce bureaus and an additional 111 referrals to 13 other Federal, state,
local and non-profit partners throughout the region.
Following his visit to ALTe, Locke and U.S. Sen.
Debbie Stabenow met with Michigan businesses at
Automation Alley, the state’s largest technology business association that has
helped Michigan dramatically increase its exports. Release | Remarks | CommerceConnect