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Plans announced for $700 million investment by Boston-based company in new solar plant in STAMP

By Howard B. Owens


Frank van Mierlo, CEO of 1366 Technologies, a Boston-based, MIT-bred solar energy company, presents Gov. Andrew Cuomo with a commemorative silicon wafer during today's announcement of a $700 million investment by the company in a new production plant in Genesee County.

This is the first major project to sign on with WNY Science and Technology Advanced Manufacturing Park (STAMP) in Alabama. The CEO said his company intends to break ground on construction in the spring and be fully operational by 2017. The facility will manufacture silicon wafers for solar panels and could employ as many as 1,000 people in what Cuomo described as good, high-paying jobs.

While STAMP has benefited from state and federal grants to build infrastructure to support the kind of manufacturing facilities officials hope to attract, the only subsidies going directly to this project are standard tax breaks on the increased assessed value and sales tax abatements. The total incentive package is $97 million spread out over 10 years.

We'll have an in-depth story on today's announcement tonight or first thing in the morning.

david spaulding

help me to understand why a boston based company would want to invest 700 million dollars in New York? I find it even more bizarre that they want to build in a former cow pasture in Alabama, a town with a two lane highway going through it.

Oct 7, 2015, 8:43pm Permalink
Brian Graz

Government Economic Development on steroids in Genesee County.

Interestingly, today County Legislator Torrey on his Facebook praised Senator Ranzenhofer for "bringing STAMP to life". I asked Torrey to provide specifics of just what Ranzenhofer did to "bring STAMP to life"... he hasn't replied.

I'd say after today's PR from Gov Cuomo, STAMP has just become a capstone in Genesee County of the Democrats. {I wonder if they will take advantage and vigorously run candidates for all offices now?}

Oct 7, 2015, 10:06pm Permalink
Timothy Hens

They like the cheap hydropower from Niagara Falls and the fact that hydropower has a zero carbon footprint. The CEO used the term "Clean to Green".

Oct 7, 2015, 10:17pm Permalink
tom hunt

We will see what happens after the 10 year tax abatement program runs out. Remember the Red Ball rubber hose company about 15 years ago??

Oct 7, 2015, 11:34pm Permalink
Jason Post

While Alabama does only have a 2-lane highway, it's only six miles on that highway from the STAMP location to the Thruway. You can be on the Thruway from there in 8 minutes without speeding.

Oct 8, 2015, 6:32am Permalink
Brenda Ranney

"We will see what happens after the 10 year tax abatement program runs out. Remember the Red Ball rubber hose company about 15 years ago??"

No Tom, not familiar with it. Can you enlighten me ?

Oct 8, 2015, 8:39am Permalink
tom hunt

Red Ball, a small Canadian rubber company, moved into the industrial complex on Pear Street and set up operations. As soon as their most favored tax status expire they closed shop over night without the least bit of warning. I have no further information and as I am recalling the above from my failing memory.

Oct 8, 2015, 10:28am Permalink
david spaulding

if you read the buffalo news, they claim there will be 600 jobs....Batavian has been told 1,000. they claim the talent pool is good here, I wonder where they got that information. I did not see anything about high paying though. with the emperor dictating wages for fast food places, I wonder if he'll tell this company what type of wages to pay. what is the wage of a "good paying job" ? anybody got an answer to that?

Oct 8, 2015, 4:45pm Permalink

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