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Conexus gets $3.45 million from Lilly Endowment

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Lilly Endowment Inc. is continuing to support the state's advanced-manufacturing initiative, giving Conexus Indiana another $3.45 million to help connect potential workers with the necessary training.

Launched in 2007 with $3 million in funding from the Indianapolis-based endowment, Conexus aims to help the state become a global leader in advanced manufacturing and logistics. It is a program of Central Indiana Corporate Partnership.

The new grant, announced Friday morning, will allow Conexus to continue to help develop and promote college-level programs and a high school curriculum that allow students to work toward degrees or certificates in the increasingly high-tech sectors.

Within five years, Conexus wants to increase enrollment in manufacturing and logistics education and training programs by 55 percent.

“Education is the major competitive advantage in today’s knowledge-based economy,” Conexus CEO Steve Dwyer said in a prepared statement. “It empowers individuals to seek new opportunities, and industries are attracted to regions that have the human capital they need to thrive.”
 
Baby boomer retirements and new business growth are expected to result in more than 5,000 advanced manufacturing and logistics job openings in central Indiana, Conexus said, citing U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics projections.

“We have two industry sectors that make up nearly a third of our economy that are in desperate need of qualified workers,” Dwyer said. “We need educational programs that teach the high-tech skills that manufacturing and logistics companies need, and we also have to let young people know that these jobs are available.”

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  1. The $104K to CRC would go toward debts service on $486M of existing debt they already have from other things outside this project. Keystone buys the bonds for 3.8M from CRC, and CRC in turn pays for the parking and site work, and some time later CRC buys them back (with interest) from the projected annual property tax revenue from the entire TIF district (est. $415K / yr. from just this property, plus more from all the other property in the TIF district), which in theory would be about a 10-year term, give-or-take. CRC is basically betting on the future, that property values will increase, driving up the tax revenue to the limit of the annual increase cap on commercial property (I think that's 3%). It should be noted that Keystone can't print money (unlike the Federal Treasury) so commercial property tax can only come from consumers, in this case the apartment renters and consumers of the goods and services offered by the ground floor retailers, and employees in the form of lower non-mandatory compensation items, such as bonuses, benefits, 401K match, etc.

  2. $3B would hurt Lilly's bottom line if there were no insurance or Indemnity Agreement, but there is no way that large an award will be upheld on appeal. What's surprising is that the trial judge refused to reduce it. She must have thought there was evidence of a flagrant, unconscionable coverup and wanted to send a message.

  3. As a self-employed individual, I always saw outrageous price increases every year in a health insurance plan with preexisting condition costs -- something most employed groups never had to worry about. With spouse, I saw ALL Indiana "free market answer" plans' premiums raise 25%-45% each year.

  4. It's not who you chose to build it's how they build it. Architects and engineers decide how and what to use to build. builders just do the work. Architects & engineers still think the tarp over the escalators out at airport will hold for third time when it snows, ice storms.

  5. http://www.abcactionnews.com/news/duke-energy-customers-angry-about-money-for-nothing

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