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U.S. Commerce Department Invests $2.8 Million to Foster Innovation in Louisiana and Massachusetts

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U.S. Commerce Department Invests $2.8 Million to Foster Innovation in Louisiana and Massachusetts

U.S. Secretary of Commerce Penny Pritzker today announced $2.8 million in Economic Development Administration (EDA) investments to support projects that will foster innovation and entrepreneurship in Louisiana and Massachusetts.

“The Obama Administration and Commerce Department have prioritized supporting American innovation, which is the key driver of U.S. competitiveness, job growth and long-term economic growth,” said Secretary Pritzker. “The EDA investments announced today will support critical infrastructure and manufacturing projects that use innovation to help attract investment and create jobs in Louisiana and Massachusetts.”

The investments announced today include the following:

  • In Vidalia, Louisiana, EDA is investing $1.2 million to help construct the 5,700-square-foot Vidalia Technology Center that will function as an incubator to help entrepreneurs to compete globally and create viable employment opportunities in the region. The EDA grant will also support the building of a more robust high speed broadband infrastructure with alternative power sources. Given its relative isolation from major markets and employment hubs, this Mississippi Delta region town needs adequate Internet connectivity to better prepare for and respond to natural disasters. The increased access to broadband communication and back-up power sources will make both the public and business sectors more resilient and strengthen the speed of future recovery efforts.
  • In Taunton, Massachusetts, EDA is investing $1.6 million to support the construction of critical infrastructure improvements to serve the Myles Standish Industrial Park Phase V: Life Science and Technology Campus, which include roadway, water, sewer and utilities that support life sciences and advanced manufacturing within the Park. These improvements will help attract higher skill, knowledge-based growth industries related to life sciences to the area, such as bio-tech, quality control and assurance, and even advanced manufacturing with a particular focus on medical device manufacturing. According to the grantee, in the short term, the investment will facilitate the implementation of the “Governor's Massachusetts Life Sciences Initiative,” a 10 year, $1 billion initiative to enhance the Commonwealth's existing competitive advantage within the life sciences sector. In the long term, the grantee estimates that Phase V holds the potential to support 587 jobs and generate $47 million in private investment.

About the U.S. Economic Development Administration (www.eda.gov)
The mission of the U.S. Economic Development Administration (EDA) is to lead the federal economic development agenda by promoting competitiveness and preparing the nation's regions for growth and success in the worldwide economy. An agency within the U.S. Department of Commerce, EDA makes investments in economically distressed communities in order to create jobs for U.S. workers, promote American innovation, and accelerate long-term sustainable economic growth.

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