Remarks at Medicago Groundbreaking
By Congressman David Price at the Research Triangle Park -
On October 1, 2010, Rep. David Price joined North Carolina Senator Kay Hagan and Medicago USA Inc. CEO Andrew Sheldon at a groundbreaking ceremony for the company's new 90,000 square foot vaccine production facility in the Research Triangle Park. The project will create 85 jobs in its first year. The text of Rep. Price's remarks is below.
Good morning! Thank you all for inviting me here to share in this exciting event. It is great to be here with the Medicago team, Governor Hunt, Senator Hagan, and so many other community leaders.
At this groundbreaking today, we are celebrating a double-barreled achievement: the creation of new jobs in the Triangle at a time when they are sorely needed, and a boost to our area's competitiveness as a national leader in the field of biomedical technology.
Medicago's facility, which will ultimately bring hundreds of good paying jobs to the region, is a welcome confirmation that the Triangle continues to lead the way delivering innovative high-tech products and creating the jobs that will power a 21st Century economy.
Even as many families in our area continue to feel the effects of the downturn, every week I am reminded that businesses in our area are leading the way back to recovery by hiring new workers, opening new facilities, and undertaking new investments in research and development.
Just in the last two weeks Cree has announced plans to add hundreds of new employees this year, and iContact announced $40 million in venture capital.
This facility will also play a key role in strengthening our nation's defenses against pandemic disease by producing new vaccine platforms that will enable us to respond more flexibly and effectively to unanticipated outbreaks as well as conventional public health threats. As Chairman of the House Homeland Security Appropriations Subcommittee, I can attest to the importance of this role as we work to improve our biopreparedness at the national level.
We are also reminded again of a key lesson of the Research Triangle's success story. The positive business climate we have created, the spirit of innovation and collaboration, has been the product of a close and constructive partnership between the public and private sectors to ensure that our policy framework encourages and supports entrepreneurship.
As you all know, Medicago's expansion into the Triangle was made possible in large part by a $21 million award from DARPA, the Pentagon's advanced research funding agency, which recognized the importance of new vaccine technologies to our national security.
We know a company like Medicago could locate its US facility anywhere in our country, but we are deeply grateful that it is choosing the Triangle, employing up to 85 people in the first year and many more in the future.
We are also proud to welcome them; their reputation for corporate citizenship is well known. This is a company that "gives back," and we know our community will benefit.
Today we celebrate both the immediate impact of this groundbreaking on our community and the advance it represents for our country's health and security. Congratulations!