Electric cars to be built in Webster City

Webster City got some good news on the green jobs front Monday:

EnVision Motor Company announced today that it will ship electric vehicles assembled at a facility in New York to a plant in Webster City. Workers in Webster City will finish the vehicles by installing the electric drive train.  EnVision president and C.E.O. Thomas Gleisner says these electric vehicles can reach a top speed of about 85 miles an hour. […]

These Electric Mobile Cars – EMC’s – can go about 200 miles on a charge, depending on how fast you drive, how much weight the vehicle is carrying and how much the vehicle has to battle wind friction. […]

Gleisner’s company, EnVision, is the U.S. distributor of these European-designed vehicles. The completed vehicle will roll off the assembly line at Auto Manufacturing Systems in Webster City, an already-existing plant.

As production ramps up, this deal is expected to create at least 300 jobs in Webster City. The Des Moines Register reported that the assembly line will use “factory space now occupied by Eagle Manufacturing, an Electrolux subcontractor. […] Eagle, a manufacturing company that now performs a variety of contract duties for Electrolux, is scheduled to lose that work by the end of next year.” In October 2009, Electrolux announced plans to close plants in Webster City and Jefferson, eliminating about 850 jobs by early 2011.

From a statement released by the governor’s office:

“We at EnVision were born and raised in Iowa. We could have easily gone outside Iowa and the United States, but we wanted to add jobs to Iowa, our home,” said EnVision CEO Thomas Gleisner. “We could not look past the ability of a community like Webster City to meet our needs. They have the experience and the workforce, and they have been involved in quality manufacturing for decades.”

EnVision is a distributor of electric vehicles for the entire United States. Auto Manufacturing Systems of Webster City will run the plant. Its parent company is Electric Mobile Cars, an importer based in New York.

City and business leaders in Webster City have also been recruiting employers in the renewable energy field to try to replace some of the Electrolux jobs. The city of Newton attracted some wind manufacturing following Maytag’s demise a few years ago.

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Events coming up during the rest of July (updated)

The RAGBRAI riders are enjoying some relatively cool weather this week, although last night’s rain may have been unpleasant for campers. If you’re riding and have any anecdotes to share, post them here.

Details on other events going on around the state are after the jump. As always, post a comment or send me an e-mail (desmoinesdem AT yahoo.com) if you know of something I’ve left out.

Occasionally I put a river clean-up on these event calendars, so I wanted to let the Bleeding Heartland community know about this opportunity:

The Iowa Whitewater Coalition today announced the Clean Rivers Team Stewardship Program (CRTSP) — a mini-grant program to help fund local river clean-up activities across Iowa.

Any community group or organization in Iowa is welcome to apply for a grant from the CRTSP for the purpose of paying expenses related to river clean-up activities. Grants are limited to a maximum of $500.

Details are available at www.iowawhitewater.org and a Letter of Application may be submitted at any time to Iowa Whitewater Coalition, PO Box 65453, West Des Moines, IA 50265. Questions can be addressed by Peter Komendowski at 319-269-8493.

UPDATE: Added details on the Iowa Politics forum for Republican gubernatorial candidates (July 22) after the jump.

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