Gwinnett County Police Training Complex wins engineering award

LAWRENCEVILLE - Pond and Company, the Norcross-based engineering firm that designed the Gwinnett County Police Training Complex in Lawrenceville, recently won the 2007 ACEC Engineering Excellence State Award for the building's design. The honor was awarded by the American Council of Engineering Companies.

The training complex meets the U.S. Green Building Council's LEED certification standards and is composed of three main components - a 30,000-square-foot training building, a 100,000-square-foot indoor firing range and a 17-acre driver training course.

Gwinnett Chamber of Commerce hires two economic developers

DULUTH - The Gwinnett County Chamber of Commerce recently added two new staffers in its economic development division.

Bill Davis joined Partnership Gwinnett and the Chamber of Commerce as its business development manager for economic development. He will focus on the retention and expansion of existing health care and life sciences companies as well as targeting new businesses.

Davis served previously as public affairs manager with Serologicals Corp. He earned a bachelor of arts degree in journalism from the University of Georgia.

Heather Neilan will serve as economic development coordinator with Partnership Gwinnett. She will support business development, marketing and research and will manage Partnership Gwinnett's presence at the AT&T Classic. Neilan most recently worked as an office manager for Automotive Detail and held positions at Adelphia Communications Corp. She holds a bachelor of arts degree in communications.

Gainesville Marina earns Four Winns' Admiral's Award

GAINESVILLE - The Gainesville Marina recently earned an Admiral's Award from Four Winns Boats. The award is presented to Four Winns retailers that bought more than $3 million worth of products from Four Winns during the model year.

Wal-Mart to donate 3 million meals to America's Second Harvest

BENTONVILLE, ARK. - Wal-Mart announced that it will donate 3 million meals, the equivalent of $1 million, to America's Second Harvest - the nation's largest charitable hunger-relief organization, according to a Wal-Mart press release.

The company will send 50 trucks filled with food to food banks in every state in the nation.

Housing construction declines with no signs of turnaround

WASHINGTON - Housing construction fell in November with single-family activity dropping to the lowest level in more than 16 years. Analysts said the recession in housing showed no signs of a turnaround.

The Commerce Department reported Tuesday that construction of new homes and apartments dropped by 3.7 percent last month to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 1.187 million units.

Construction of single-family homes fell by 5.5 percent to an annual rate of 829,000 units. It was the eighth consecutive drop in single-family starts, pushing activity in this area to the lowest level since April 1991. Apartment building rose last month by 4.4 percent to an annual rate of 332,000 units.

Stocks rise in volatile trading

NEW YORK - Stocks rose Tuesday after investors found solace in the European Central Bank's $500 billion loan issuance, but the possibility of recession in 2008 made for a back-and-forth session. The ECB's massive 16-day tender supported the idea that the world's central banks are working to revive demand in struggling areas of the credit market. The Bank of England also said it will offer additional reserves to lenders Tuesday, after the U.S. Federal Reserve on Monday auctioned off $20 billion in 28-day credit.