Back in 2007, the state of Massachusetts gave Evergreen Solar about $58 million in subsidies and tax breaks including a $1/year lease on land at the Fort Devens military base. That was four short years ago.
Now, after closing the Devens factory in March and eliminating 800 jobs, they are filing for bankruptcy and laying off an additional 65 employees.
This company was given all this money and other benefits in exchange for promises of green jobs. They manufacture solar panels. Now, they have discovered that it's too expensive to produce these panels here in the United States. Where was their research into costs? Surprise, they are moving to China. In China it will cost $1.10 per watt to make these panels as opposed to $1.80 here - a difference of 70 cents.
It seems to me that governments, federal, state and local, are too free with our money and giving aid to companies. There should be some strings attached - maybe a promise to continue the business in the same location for at least 10 years or all the money and tax breaks must be returned before a plant or office can be closed and employees laid off.
This company must have had a poor business plan or poor leadership to fail after only four years. Companies are only too quick to take government (taxpayer) money and then much too slow to return it to their benefactor - the government (taxpayer).
I wonder how many more companies took our money and then moved their operations to China. Maybe Donald Trump is right, we should put a high tax on Chinese imports.