For Immediate Release - December 19, 2013

Patrick Administration Approves Economic Development Projects That Will Create and Retain 2,911 Jobs in Communities Across The Commonwealth

BOSTON – Wednesday, December 18, 2013 – The Economic Assistance Coordinating Council (EACC) today approved 14 projects for participation in the Economic Development Incentive Program (EDIP), which are expected to create 1,217 new jobs and retain 1,694 existing jobs, in addition to leveraging over $133 million in private investment and supporting construction projects across the Commonwealth.

Among the 14 approved projects are 5 manufacturing companies and 9 projects located in Gateway Cities. The EDIP program will facilitate the growth of these businesses, which will contribute to job creation and private investment in the state. The EACC meets on a quarterly basis to review applications.

“Supporting companies that are choosing to grow in Massachusetts is an important part and one of the Administration’s key economic development objectives to create economic opportunity for every region of the Commonwealth,” said Massachusetts Office of Business Development Executive Director Michael Hunter. “These investments will help these businesses expand here and continue to enhance the Massachusetts economy by making our businesses and communities stronger in the long term.”

The EDIP is the Commonwealth’s investment tax credit program for businesses. In 2009, Governor Patrick and Housing and Economic Development Secretary Greg Bialecki, along with the Legislature, reformed the program and, as a result, EDIP has become one of the most effective programs helping businesses grow in Massachusetts.

Since these changes, 175 projects have received approval, leading to the creation of 12,666 new jobs, retention of 38,901 existing jobs and leveraging of over $4.6 billion in private investment. The EACC has assisted 97 manufacturers through the EDIP program and supported 82 projects in Gateway Cities. The reforms in 2009 also included the creation of important clawback provisions that allows for the Commonwealth to recoup money invested through the credit if companies do not meet their job-creation targets.

The EACC approved the following projects at today’s meeting:

Manufacturing Retention and Job Growth Projects

Menck USA, Inc. d/b/a Menck Windows (Chicopee) – Menck Windows is a joint venture of Menck USA, Inc. and leading window manufacturer, Menck Fenster GmbH, of Hamburg, Germany. The company designs, manufactures and installs custom, finely crafted, energy-efficient windows and doors for architects across Europe and North America.  As both energy costs and environmental consciousness have risen in the United States, Menck’s European windows and doors have found an increasingly receptive market and the company has identified a site in Chicopee to serve as their first North American manufacturing facility.  An investment of $7,250,000 will enable the company to renovate 77,400 square feet of the facility and purchase state of the art CNC machinery. The Manufacturing Retention & Job Growth project will create 50 net-new full time jobs in the Commonwealth. The City of Chicopee is supporting the project with a 5-Year Special Tax Assessment valued at $348,933.  The EACC Board has approved $750,000 in EDIP Investment Tax Credits.

Klear Vu Corporation (Fall River) – Klear Vu Corporation was founded in Brooklyn, New York, in 1924 and relocated its manufacturing operations to Fall River in 1965.  The company is recognized as a national leader in the production of chair pads, rocker sets, decorative pillows, bed rests and table linens that are primarily sold to mass-merchandisers and national department stores.  The company will invest $2,369,201 to purchase a 170,000 square foot vacant facility located in the Fall River Industrial Park.  The relocation will enable the company to increase its productivity and modernize operations.  The Manufacturing Retention & Job Growth project will create 12 net-new full-time jobs and retain 75 full-time jobs in Fall River.  The EACC has approved $60,000 in EDIP Investment Tax Credits. Klear Vu Corporation will also benefit from the Commonwealth’s 10 percent Abandoned Building Deduction.

Expansion Projects (EP)

Central Avenue Hotel LLC (Chelsea) – Central Avenue Hotel LLC is a single purpose entity of SXC Hotel Company, LLC, and plans to invest $18,150,000 to build a 5 story, 140 room, full-service Marriot TownPlace Suites hotel. The hotel will be erected on a substantially underutilized, abandoned parcel of land just over the East Boston border and will serve as a strong visual presence upon arrival to the City of Chelsea from the Chelsea Bridge eastern access point.  With its close proximity to Boston’s Logan International Airport, this flagship hotel will capitalize on airport overflow business as well as the vibrant business traveler industry that Logan Airport supports. The Expansion Project will create 30 net-new full-time jobs in the Commonwealth. The City of Chelsea is supporting the project with a 5-Year Tax Increment Financing Agreement and Personal Property Tax Exemption valued at $816,608.  The EACC has approved $300,000 in EDIP Investment Tax Credits.

Lawrenceville Hotel LLC (Chelsea) –  Lawrenceville Hotel LLC is a single purpose entity of the SXC Hotel Company, LLC, and plans to invest $26,640,000 to build a 5 story, 152 room, full service Holiday Inn.  The hotel will also feature a 225 person function room and restaurant that will allow the community to host events within City limits.  The project site has substantial development challenges as it is a previously contaminated industrial site.  The Developer and the City have partnered to jumpstart this challenging development which will serve as a gateway to the City from the Tobin Bridge western access point.   The Expansion Project will create 40 net-new full-time jobs in the Commonwealth. The City of Chelsea is supporting the project with a 7-Year Tax Increment Financing Agreement and Personal Property Tax Exemption valued at $1,522,838.  The EACC has approved $400,000 in EDIP Investment Tax Credits.

Granite Telecommunications, LLC (Quincy) – Headquartered in Quincy, Granite Telecommunications is one of the premier telecommunications solutions providers to multi-location companies and government entities.  Through long-term commercial wholesale contracts, Granite offers dial-tone, infrastructure solutions, and high speed broadband services to their customers at significant savings.  Granite has experienced enormous growth over the past ten years and provides services to more than 14,000 corporate clients in 250,000 locations across the United States and Canada. To facilitate current and envisioned growth in its core telecommunications services and rapidly expanding trending markets, Granite has purchased a neighboring building to its headquarters. A private investment of $9,000,000 will enable the company to create one efficient campus-style facility that includes building upgrades, remodeling of the interior floor plans and redesigning of the existing parking lot configuration.  The Expansion Project will create 764 net-new full time jobs and retain 935 full-time jobs in the Commonwealth. The City of Quincy is supporting the project with a 15-Year Tax Increment Financing Agreement valued at $367,320. The EACC has approved $630,000 in EDIP Investment Tax Credits.

Berkshire Mountain Distillers (Sheffield) – Founded in 2007, Berkshire Mountain Distillers, Inc. is a farm distillery that produces a wide range of high end, award winning, craft distilled spirits that are distributed in over 20 states. The company has experienced an average of forty percent growth per year since its inception. To accommodate future growth, Berkshire Mountain Distillers purchased a 7,200 square foot facility that will be home their new distillery, warehousing and shipping facility. The company will invest $866,000 for the purchase, renovation and fitting of the property. The Expansion Project will allow the company to double their employee base through the retention of 4 full-time jobs and creation of 4 net-new full time jobs in the Commonwealth. The Town of Sheffield is supporting the project with a 10-Year Tax Increment Financing Agreement valued at $36,685. The EACC has approved $40,000 in EDIP Investment Tax Credits.

Mestek, Inc. (Westfield) – Headquartered in Westfield, Massachusetts, Mestek Inc. is a global manufacturer of products for the HVAC, Architectural and Metal Forming industries with 12 United States manufacturing facilities and revenues grossing almost $300,000,000 annually.  In September of 2013, Mestek acquired Australian company Dadanco that will become a new Mestek Division that offers innovative “Green” technology to heat and cool buildings.  After consideration of the company’s other facilities, Westfield was selected to house these operations.  The company will invest $1,322,000 in the LEED Gold Certified Project which will include improvements to the physical membrane of the building, purchase of equipment and installation of two state-of-the-art testing labs for product development, training and testing.  The Expansion Project will create 15 net-new full-time jobs in Westfield and retain the company’s current Massachusetts workforce of 354 full-time employees.  The City of Westfield is supporting the project with a 9-Year Tax Increment Financing Agreement valued at $62,180. The EACC has approved $133,200 in EDIP Investment Tax Credits. Mestek, Inc. will also benefit from the Commonwealth’s 10 percent Abandoned Building Deduction.

Cumberland Farms, Inc. (Westborough) –  Found in 1939 as a dairy farm in Cumberland, Rhode Island, Cumberland Farms, Inc. operates 600 retail stores and gas stations spanning twelve states from its Framingham, Massachusetts headquarters.   As part of a rebranding strategy, the company wishes to expand its retail fresh food offerings and after the examination of other existing New England locations, proposes an expansion at the Westborough distribution facility to accomplish this goal.  The Westborough distribution facility is a 505,000 square foot building that today ships 350 tons of retail products for the New England States as well as New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Delaware and Maryland. A private investment of $15,993,383 will enable the build out of 11,000 square feet of existing space to create a product center, increase the freezer capacity by 27,000 square feet, update 8,000 square feet of cooler space and refrigerate the loading docks. The Expansion Project will create 79 net-new full-time jobs, retain 202 full-time jobs at the Westborough facility and retain 2,263 full-time jobs in the Commonwealth. The Town of Westborough is supporting the project with a 15-Year Tax Increment Financing Agreement and 5-Year Personal Property Tax Exemption valued at $130,446. The EACC has approved $395,000 in EDIP Investment Tax Credits. Cumberland Farms will also benefit from the Commonwealth’s 10 percent Abandoned Building Deduction.

Dennison Lubricants (Worcester) – Founded in 1987, Dennison Lubricants is a family-owned manufacturer and distributer of lubricants for the automotive, aviation, commercial, food handling, industrial and marine industries throughout greater New England. A $4,200,000 investment at their Worcester facility will enable the company to increase its operational capacity and efficiencies to accommodate its continued growth.  The Expansion Project will involve a 20,000 square foot addition to the existing building for blending and storing diesel exhaust fluid ingredients. Also planned is a 3,600 square foot bulk tank farm which will include a steel frame structure, nine 30,000 gallon tanks and a loading rack for rail and truck transport. The project will create 20 net-new full-time jobs, retain 40 full-time jobs at the Worcester facility and retain 79 full-time jobs in the Commonwealth. The City of Worcester is supporting the project with a 7-Year Tax Increment Financing Agreement valued at $172,760. The EACC has approved $250,000 in EDIP Investment Tax Credits.

Tax Increment Financing Only; the following projects will not receive an EDIP Investment Tax Credit

uniQure, Inc. (Lexington) –  uniQure, Inc. is a Netherlands based, world leader in the research, early development and manufacturing of human gene based therapies.  In 2012, uniQure’s lead product, Glybera, for the treatment of lipoprotein lipase deficiency, became the first gene therapy approved in the Western world.  The company currently has a product pipeline of gene therapies for hemophilia B, acute intermittent porphyria, Parkinson’s disease and Sanfillipo B. uniQure has identified 52,000 square feet of vacant space that it will invest $20,000,000 to transform into their North American headquarters and state-of-art life sciences manufacturing facility. The project will create 90 net-new full-time jobs, retain 3 full-time jobs, and allow the company to join the growing cluster of life sciences companies in Massachusetts. The Town of Lexington is supporting the project with a 10-Year Tax Increment Financing Agreement valued at $285,832. uniQure will also benefit from the Commonwealth’s 10 percent Abandoned Building Deduction.

Ophthalmic Consultants of Boston (Plymouth) – Founded in 1972, Ophthalmic Consultants of Boston is one of the leading eye care providers in Massachusetts with seven practice locations and affiliations with four eye surgical and laser centers. The staff of 29 Ophthalmologists and 13 Optometrists provide on an annual basis approximately 186,000 patient visits which includes 11,000 surgical, 4,000 laser and 1,000 LASIK cases. To provide improved convenience to patients on the South Shore and Plymouth County, the practice is constructing a new clinic and surgery center in Plymouth.  The company will invest $10,000,000 for the new construction and purchase of equipment.  The project will create 28 net-new full-time jobs in Plymouth and retain 353 full-time jobs in Massachusetts. The Town of Plymouth is supporting the project with a 10-Year Tax Increment Financing Agreement and Personal Property Tax Exemption valued at $195,567.

Expert Lasers (Southbridge) – Founded in Southbridge in 1990, Expert Lasers provides service and supplies for office equipment in the central New England region.  The company has grown from a one man operation to a twenty employee firm that today occupies 10,000 square feet of commercial space. To accommodate future growth, Expert Lasers will invest $635,000 to purchase a 12,300 square foot, vacant town barn that it will renovate into office, remanufacturing and warehousing space.   The renovation will allow for an expansion of the company’s toner remanufacturing and sales divisions. The project will create 7 net-new full-time jobs in Southbridge and will retain 20 full-time jobs in Massachusetts. The Town of Southbridge is supporting the project with a 5-Year Tax Increment Financing Agreement valued at $9,654. Expert Lasers will also benefit from the Commonwealth’s 10 percent Abandoned Building Deduction.

Titan Roofing Supply, Inc. (Springfield) – Founded in 1978, Titan Roofing is a premier commercial roofing, sheet metal and restoration contractor. Since 2008, the company has seen annual revenues grow from $18,000,000 to $65,000,000 to become the ninth largest roofing company in the United States. The company is currently capacity constrained at its existing 46,000 square foot facility in Chicopee and would like to expand its operations to allow for future growth opportunities. Titan Roofing Supply plans to invest $2,025,000 to purchase and renovate a 91,000 square foot facility in Springfield to become its new headquarters. This expansion will enable the company to bid on larger scale projects, continue to manufacture in Massachusetts and because of the geographic location of the new facility, better service the eastern New England market. The City of Springfield is supporting the project with a 5 Year Tax Increment Financing Agreement valued at $93,552. 

Oasis at Dodge Park, LLC (Worcester) – Oasis at Dodge Park, LLC is an entity formed by the owners of Dodge Park Rest Home in Worcester.  The company has purchased a property across the street from their existing rest home and will construct a new, state-of-the-art, 82 bed rest home residence primarily for the elderly with memory impairment, dementia and Alzheimer’s disease.  A private investment of $14,690,348 is expected for the demolition of the existing building, two phase construction of the 61,920 square foot structure and furnishing and equipment purchases.  The project will create 78 net-new full-time jobs in the Commonwealth. The City of Worcester is supporting the project with a 12 Year Tax Increment Financing Agreement valued at $1,492,140.

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