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Posted on: June 14, 2012

Kansas awarded Silver Shovel for economic development, job creation efforts

Area Development, the leading publication covering site selection and facility planning, announced the winners of its 2012 Gold and Silver Shovel Awards, with Kansas winning a Silver Shovel. The award recognizes a significant number of high-value-added new jobs and investment in the state in 2011. Eighteen states were singled out for the magazine’s awards this year.

“It is rewarding that our work to make Kansas the best place to operate a business is being recognized by a national trade publication,” said Kansas Commerce Secretary Pat George. “The efforts we started last year continue into 2012 with the major tax reform that will eliminate taxes for small businesses and entrepreneurs, create almost 23,000 new jobs and put $1.5 billion back into the hands of Kansans.”

In 2011, the Department helped facilitate 138 projects that created or retained almost 11,500 jobs and resulted in almost $1.7 billion in capital investment.

The annual Shovel Awards recognize state economic development agencies that drive significant job creation through innovative policies, infrastructure improvements, processes and promotions that attract new employers as well as investments in expanded facilities. The Gold Shovels are presented annually to the states that have achieved the most success in terms of new job creation and economic impact. Texas, Tennessee, South Carolina and Utah won Gold Shovel Awards this year.

For the Silver Shovel Awards, the states are compared only to other states in their population tier. This year, North Carolina, Georgia, Michigan, and Ohio will receive Silver Shovels in the 9-plus million population group; Arizona, Missouri, Indiana, and Virginia are being awarded Silver Shovels in the 5-plus to 9 million category; Alabama, Louisiana, and Kentucky will receive Silver Shovels in the 3-plus to 5 million category; and Kansas, Mississippi, and Idaho are being honored in the 3 million or fewer population group.

Each of the 50 states was invited by Area Development to submit information about its top-10 job creation and investment projects. Only those projects that began to materialize in 2011 were considered. The Shovel Awards are given to the states with the highest weighted scores based on number of high-valued added jobs per capita, amount of investment, number of new facilities, and industry diversity.

“As the economy slowly recovers, communities are going to great lengths to attract new businesses and to help their existing corporate citizens to expand their business,” said Geraldine Gambale, editor of Area Development. “The states receiving 2012 Shovel Awards deserve special recognition for their efforts.”

A report on the 2012 Shovel Award winners will be published in the Summer 2012 issue of Area Development and posted online at

Area Development is published bi-monthly and has 45,000-plus executive subscribers. It also maintains several highly visited websites, which can be reached through

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Kansas Department of Commerce, 1000 S.W. Jackson St., Suite 100, Topeka, KS 66612-1354
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