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Top News Links: Wednesday, March 20

Big investments, plenty of jobs added in 2012, governor says

New and expanding businesses invested $5.4 billion in 2012, which should bring some 21,000 new jobs, Gov. Robert Bentley said yesterday.  — Alabama Department of Commerce

State commerce officials unveil new "Made in Alabama" brand

Hoping to position Alabama as a global economic development powerhouse, Commerce Department officials yesterday unveiled a new logo for state industry that proclaims "Made in Alabama." — Alabama Department of Commerce

Cross training a likely hallmark for Airbus employees, Mobile mayor says

Mobile Mayor Sam Jones, touring an Airbus facility in Hamburg, Germany, said most employees in the plant are cross-trained in several different trades, a policy he expects the company to follow at its in-progress plant in Mobile. — Mobile Press-Register

Bill would end sales tax on food

A bill introduced by state Sen. Gerald Dial, R-Lineville, would eliminate state sales tax on food items over four years, but slowly increase state sales tax on other items. — Anniston Star

Former HeatlhSouth exec Scrushy seeks new trial

Richard Scrushy, his prison sentence complete, is seeking a new trial in hopes of clearing his name, the Associated Press reports. — Gadsden Times

Alabama stocks

Seeking to add value for stockholders, Regions Financial has approved plans to repurchase up to  $350 million of its stock. — al.com

52-week low for Walter Energy before bounce back — Birmingham News

UAB adds primary care program for new physician assistant students

Incoming students in UAB's physician assistant program have the option of preparing for a career in primary care, rather than surgery, a program added in anticipation of need for more primary care providers under the new federal health care provisions. — UAB PR

Steel plant bids below book value

Final bids from companies interested in purchasing ThyssenKrupp's remaining steel mills in Alabama and Brazil have come in below book value for the plants; deal could come as early as April and may lead to further write-offs to German industrialist's bottom line. — Nasdaq

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