Shire to Massachusetts: Pass incentive bill now

The Massachusetts Legislature is taking its sweet time passing Governor Deval Patrick's proposed $1 billion incentive bill, and Shire is not too happy about it. The U.K.-based drug company was planning to build a $210 million plant in the state, but Shire is now threatening to take its business (and the 600 jobs it would create) elsewhere unless the state government passes the incentive package. North Carolina in particular is angling to attract Shire's business.

Back in July, Massachusetts Governor Patrick (D) filed a 10-year, $1 billion biotech investment bill designed to help the state keep its lead in the industry. The proposal included $25 million in tax incentives to attract pharmaceutical and biotech companies to Massachusetts. However, the bill is currently cooling its heels in the state's House of Representatives, which has yet to start the review process. "The process has been somewhat slower than what we originally anticipated," said a Shire spokesperson. The life science economic development world is cutthroat, and Massachusetts can't afford to drag its feet.

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