Obama visits SW Michigan advanced battery plant

Posted Aug. 11, 2011, at 10:28 p.m.

HOLLAND, Mich. — President Barack Obama has used a visit to an advanced battery plant in southwestern Michigan to promote his program to create jobs through clean energy.

Obama toured a Johnson Controls Inc. plant in Holland on Thursday. It makes batteries for alternative-fuel vehicles such as hybrid or electric cars and trucks.

Michigan’s unemployment rate was 10.5 percent in June, and Obama has promoted the job-creation benefits of spending money on producing such clean-energy technologies as advanced batteries.

Some Boy Scouts were on hand, including 17-year-old Armaan Dandavati of Holland. He says the plant is “an investment in the future.”

The plant has received a $300 million federal grant and expects to create 150 jobs at facilities in Michigan and Wisconsin.