The Center for Advanced Manufacturing at MassTech (CAM) has launched a new online portal that creates a single ‘digital front door’ for Massachusetts companies that are preparing proposals to the federal CHIPS Act, a major $50 billion dollar federal initiative designed to “strengthen and revitalize the U.S. position in semiconductor research, development, and manufacturing.”
Some federal funding opportunities under the CHIPS Act, such as the Notice of Funding Opportunity for Commercial Fabrication Facilities launched in late February, require applicants to identify state or local incentives within a company’s application for federal grant funding. CAM, in partnership with the Executive Office of Economic Development, the Massachusetts Office of Business Development (MOBD), and numerous other state agencies launched the new portal to streamline the process for Massachusetts-based organizations to identify, engage with, and access state funding programs, helping them develop a complete application with the inclusion of a letter from the state reflecting its offer to provide a qualifying covered incentive for a proposed project.
“Massachusetts companies are well positioned to apply for and win these CHIPS dollars,” said Carolyn Kirk, Executive Director of the MassTech Collaborative, the parent organization of the Center for Advanced Manufacturing. “The online intake form provides companies with an expedited way to request support from the state and get a response that aligns with the timing of their federal application deadlines.”
“Through CHIPS, we have an amazing opportunity to expand key R&D and workforce training efforts in our state around semiconductors and microelectronics, helping develop products that are critical to our digital economy and the security of our nation,” said Christine Nolan, Director for the Center for Advanced Manufacturing at MassTech. “Over the years, Massachusetts has launched numerous state programs that offer funds that can be matched with federal investment, including our Mass. Manufacturing Innovation Initiative grants that have supported more than 80 innovation projects across the state. We’re eager to connect with Massachusetts companies to talk with them about their CHIPS proposal and identify what state programs might make sense for their proposal.”
As noted by the federal authorities, companies submitting a proposal must include a letter demonstrating the offer of a covered incentive(s) at the time of the application, which can include contingencies, but the contingencies must be cleared and incentives made available by the time of the federal award.
The new portal includes a list of programs, including:
|Capital investments for CHIPS initiatives||Mass. Technology Collaborative (MassTech)|
|Energy Savings||Massachusetts Clean Energy Center (CEC)|
|Manufacturing Tax Credits||Mass. Department of Revenue (DOR)|
|MassWorks Infrastructure Grant||Executive Office of Economic Development (EOED)|
|Tax Incentives for Job Creation||Mass. Office of Business Development (MOBD)
& Economic Development Incentive Program (EDIP)
|Workforce Training/Safety Training||Executive Office of Labor & Workforce Development|
Once the intake form is submitted, state manufacturing executives review submissions and follow up with companies to discuss their requests and make introductions to the relevant state agency or agencies which manage the covered state incentive programs, with the relevant agencies providing guidance on accessing the identified program.
Also under CHIPS, the Mass. Center for Advanced Manufacturing and more than 85 organizations from across the Northeast submitted a proposal to the federal government to create the Northeast Microelectronics Coalition, a regional hub that will advance the microelectronics needs of the U.S. Department of Defense (DoD), an effort that aims to spur new jobs, workforce training opportunities, and investment in the region’s advanced manufacturing and technology sectors. The Coalition submitted the proposal to the DoD’s Microelectronics Commons program, which is funded by the 2022 CHIPS and Science Act that aims to onshore the manufacturing of microelectronics and semiconductor technologies and support workforce training for these industries.
In that proposal, Governor Maura Healey outlined the potential for Massachusetts to benefit from CHIPS funding.
“This is a once in a generation opportunity to invest in cutting-edge sectors that will be key to our country’s national security and ensure Massachusetts companies have the resources and workforce they need to succeed,” said Governor Healey. “We’re thrilled to put forth this competitive proposal to bolster the industries keeping Massachusetts at the forefront of innovation.”