CHICAGO - Despite a moribund manufacturing base and stagnant economy, the Midwest remains in a position to become a center of the U.S. renewable energy industry while also attracting other large-scale industrial redevelopment projects, participants said this week at The Bond Buyer's annual Midwest Public Finance Conference here.

States and municipalities that are beginning to use a number of public finance tools to attract new business could benefit further from recent legislation that significantly broadens the use of tax-exempt bonds for a variety of private projects, bond experts said.

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