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Senator Spilka Lauds 2010 Life Sciences Tax Incentives Targeted at MetroWest Companies

December 30, 2010

Senator Spilka announced today that the Massachusetts Life Sciences Center has approved $23.9 million in 2010 tax incentives to encourage growth at 30 life sciences companies.   The recipient companies have committed to creating nearly 1000 new jobs in 2011.  Among them are seven companies based in the MetroWest region that will receive a combined total of more than $2.6 million in tax incentives.  The MetroWest companies have committed to the creation of 131 jobs in 2011.

The Life Sciences Tax Incentive Program, established in 2008 as part of the state’s ten-year, $1 billion Life Sciences Initiative, authorizes up to $25 million in tax incentives each year for companies engaged in life sciences research and development, commercialization, and manufacturing.  The primary goal of the program is to incentivize life sciences companies to create new sustained jobs in Massachusetts.

“MetroWest continues its development as an important center for the life sciences industry – and the industry is creating good jobs right here, right now,” said State Senator Karen Spilka (D-Ashland), Senate Chairwoman of the Joint Committee on Economic Development and Emerging Technologies.  “I am pleased that we as a commonwealth are able to support the growth of these local companies and the workers they employ.”

The Life Sciences Act provides for nine different incentives, which address the significant capital expenditures associated with the life sciences R&D cycle and the high costs of translating research into commercially viable products.  This is the second year that incentives have been provided under the program.
“The Life Sciences Initiative is all about jobs and better health,” said Governor Deval Patrick. “These incentives help us build a stronger foundation for our economy and for healing for years to come.”

The life sciences companies that have been authorized to receive tax incentives in MetroWest, the city or town where they are located, the amount awarded and the company’s job creation commitments are as follows:

Boston Heart Lab, Inc.
Number of Jobs:36

Interlace Medical, Inc. 
Amount: $75,000   
Number of Jobs: 10

Caliper Life Sciences, Inc. 
Amount: $270,000   
Number of Jobs: 11

NormOxys, Inc.  
Amount: $144,378   
Number of Jobs: 10

Still Rivers Systems, Inc. 
Amount: $296,288   
Number of Jobs: 11

Sunovion, Inc.  
Amount: $942,734   
Number of Jobs: 35

Valeritas, Inc.  
Amount: $480,000   
Number of Jobs: 18

“Caliper is proud and honored to receive this innovative financing award from the Life Sciences Center,” said Kevin Hrusovsky, President and CEO of Caliper Life Sciences. “This award will allow us to make investments that will increase our efforts to revolutionize the practice of medicine and expand our comprehensive suite of tools and services to address the important emerging trend towards personalized medicine.”

“It wasn’t an accident that Boston Heart Lab’s founders chose Framingham, Massachusetts as the location of our advanced cardiac risk assessment testing lab in 2008.  Using the results of our proprietary tests along with other known cardiac risk markers, we create personalized treatment plans for each individual patient that help clinicians achieve the best possible health outcomes”, said Chief Executive Officer Susan Hertzberg. “We collaborate closely with the scientists at the Framingham Heart Study, the pivotal long-term research that has furthered all of our understanding of the risk factors associated with heart disease and stroke. The demand for Boston Heart Lab’s personalized cardiac risk-assessment profiles continues to grow very rapidly. The Massachusetts Life Sciences Center tax incentives will provide critical resources, enabling us to significantly increase our staff over the next year to meet the increased demand for testing and to support our new test development.”

“These tax incentives are providing a solid return on our state’s investment in both the short and long term, with this year’s round of recipients committing to create nearly 1,000 new jobs during the coming year,” said Dr. Susan Windham-Bannister, President & CEO of the Massachusetts Life Sciences Center.  “We are utilizing these incentives to encourage the creation of jobs in sectors where Massachusetts is a global leader, and where jobs typically pay more than the average salary in Massachusetts.  This tax incentive program is already working to stimulate our economy, while holding the companies involved accountable for their job creation commitments.”

“The companies that will receive these incentives are adding jobs in a cutting-edge industry that is a strength for Massachusetts,” said Massachusetts Administration and Finance Secretary Jay Gonzalez, Co-chairman of the Center’s Board of Directors.  “The Governor’s Life Sciences initiative not only offers hope to those waiting for cures for diseases, but to the Commonwealth as a whole as we look to grow our economy and lay the foundation for long-term economic competitiveness and success.”

“These investments continue to position the Commonwealth for long term sustainable job growth and further support our place as a global leader in the innovation economy,” said Massachusetts Secretary of Housing & Economic Development Gregory Bialecki, Co-chairman of the Center’s Board of Directors.

The Tax Incentive Program is jointly administered by the Center and the Massachusetts Department of Revenue (DOR), which will oversee the technical administration of the incentives.  Jobs that are created must be maintained for at least five years.  The Tax Incentive Program mandates that awarded companies submit reports and respond to inquiries by the Center and DOR regarding employment figures.  If a company receiving a tax incentive under the program does not meet and maintain their job creation commitment, the credit can be “clawed back” (recovered) by DOR, requiring that the company pay back all or a portion of the tax incentives they’ve received.

The Life Sciences Initiative authorizes the Massachusetts Life Sciences Center to award up to $25 million in tax incentives each year. Applicants are generally companies that have transitioned or are transitioning from pure life sciences research and development (“R&D”) to commercialization and manufacturing. The Center recognizes that many companies struggle to address the significant capital investment associated with the long life sciences R&D cycle and the high cost of translating research into a commercially viable product. This solicitation is designed to help sustain these companies through a critical stage of development and to leverage additional sources of capital to bring cutting edge innovation to the marketplace.


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