This Just In: Gov. Whitmer approves additional investment in SOAR Fund to attract transformational projects to the state

Passed by the Michigan Legislature on Sept. 28 and signed by Governor Whitmer today, the bipartisan supplemental package includes $496 million for future economic development projects and $350 million for site development statewide.

Less than a year after new economic development programs were created to position Michigan to win transformational projects, the state’s Strategic Outreach and Attraction Reserve (SOAR) Fund is receiving additional funding thanks to a bipartisan supplemental package signed by Governor Whitmer today.

Passed by the Michigan Legislature with bipartisan support, the $1.11 billion supplemental spending bill includes $496 million for future economic investments – $206 million of which is reappropriated from the previous year – as well as $350 million for site development statewide, including:

  • Grants to regional and local economic development organizations
  • Strategic site improvements
  • Remediation and redevelopment for future projects

The supplemental also includes $27 million for infrastructure upgrades to secure an investment from Hemlock Semiconductor Operations (HSC). Approved on Sept. 7, the Thomas Township infrastructure project will enable a total capital investment of up to $375 million and the creation of 170 jobs by HSC.

Supported through SOAR’s initial $1 billion in funding, the Strategic Site Readiness Program (SSRP) and Critical Industry Program (CIP) were part of a package of legislation signed into law by Governor Whitmer in December 2021.

Since the SOAR fund was introduced, Michigan has secured key transformational projects, including:

  • General Motors investing $7 billion, creating 4,000 and retaining 1,000 jobs, to convert Orion Township assembly plant to build full-size EV pickups and build Ultium’s third U.S. battery cell plant in Lansing. The investment was supported in part by a CIP grant of $600 million and SSRP grant of $66.1 million.
  • Ford Motor Company investing $2 billion, creating more than 3,200 jobs in plants across Michigan to support EV manufacturing growth and secure internal combustion engine portfolio in the state. The investment was supported in part by a CIP grant of $100.8 million.
  • Hemlock Semiconductor Operations investing $375 million, creating 170 jobs in Thomas Township to strengthen Michigan’s leadership in the semiconductor supply chain with MSF-approved support for local infrastructure upgrades. Thomas Township received a $27 million SSRP performance-based grant for the project.

The additional SOAR funding will place Michigan in the best position to attract economic development projects across the state, creating thousands of jobs and shaping the future for those who live and work in Michigan.