Top Headlines: Giant development headed to Huntsville, Alabama’s Safest Manufacturers named

Austal navigating possibilities as Navy nears decision on frigates
Mobile’s biggest industrial employer, Austal USA, has (probably) received the last order for its biggest product, and is gunning hard in what appears to be a winner-takes-all battle royale for its next big contract. But Austal USA President Craig Perciavalle says the company’s future isn’t tied solely to the Navy’s upcoming decision on a new frigate program — and there’s a recurring theme among industry reports that the Navy’s seemingly clear-cut choice could play out in ways no one expects. – AL.com

Giant mixed-use development coming to south Huntsville
A Huntsville family of developers is planning a dramatic project in south Huntsville that would transform the area around Grissom High School and bring a revitalized retail corridor to Memorial Parkway. The 850-acre development – described as a “gathering place for south Huntsville” — will include high-end housing, a nature preserve, a mixed-use segment with restaurants, retail and condos. – AL.com

Alabama’s Safest Manufacturers named in Montgomery
Three outstanding manufacturers were recently named Alabama’s Safest Manufacturers at the Business Council of Alabama’s Manufacturer of the Year Awards in Montgomery. Austal USA, Specification Rubber Products, and U.S. Gypsum Corporation, the top winners for 2019, will be featured in the June 2019 manufacturing issue of Business Alabama. – News release

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Calera man says Teamsters seized anti-union petitions from him
An employee at a Calera plant says members of the Teamsters local physically intimidated him during a counter-protest to union organizing. Sulane Lowery, an employee of Sysco Foods of Central Alabama, filed a federal unfair labor practice charge with the National Labor Relations Board against the International Brotherhood of Teamsters and Teamsters Local 612. – AL.com

Wonky, secretive charter school gets spotlight from Washington Post
When a newspaper with the national impact of The Washington Post covers a story out of tiny Washington County, AL, you immediately know there is something serious afoot.  In this case, it is the Washington County charter fiasco that got the attention of veteran education reporter Valerie Strauss, who has worked for the newspaper for nearly 30 years. Because of her vast experience with all things education, Strauss did an excellent job interviewing people from both sides of the issue and adding info about charter schools that are not common knowledge. – Alabama Political Reporter

Ford Ranger sales aren’t quite as hot as predicted
Through April of 2019, Ford has moved only 15,169 units of its new 2019 Ranger pickup, beating only the GMC Canyon (9374 sales) and Honda’s unibody Ridgeline (9606 sales) in the mid-size pickup segment. The decidedly not-new Chevrolet Colorado has racked up 45,149 sales so far this year, while the segment continues to be dominated by the popular (and also not-new) Toyota Tacoma, 78,558 of which have found new homes so far in 2019. – Car and Driver

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