PA Governor Rendell Announces Arrival of Solar Material Manufacturer in Bucks County


Apr 14, 2007, 01:00 ET from Pennsylvania Office of the Governor

    FAIRLESS HILLS, Pa., April 14 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Governor
 Edward G. Rendell announced today that a start-up solar material
 manufacturer will turn a vacant building at the Keystone Industrial Port
 Complex into a production facility and corporate headquarters that will
 bring at least 143 jobs beginning next year.
     During the announcement today, the Governor said attracting fresh
 investments and economic development projects like AE Polysilicon
 Corporation creates new opportunities for Pennsylvania's workers and
 strengthens the state's position as a leader in the development and use of
 alternative energy solutions -- a major goal of his Energy Independence
     "We've rebuilt Pennsylvania's economy by investing in projects that
 offer a promising return and create new opportunities for our people," said
 Governor Rendell. "Projects, like the one we're announcing today, that
 enhance our ability to produce and consume alternative forms of energy
 certainly fit that bill."
     The company is purchasing approximately 20 acres of land, including a
 39,000-square-foot building. AE Polysilicon will renovate the existing
 building for use as its global headquarter offices and will begin
 constructing an open-air manufacturing facility on five adjacent acres of
 land in July. AE Polysilicon will manufacture polysilicon, which is the raw
 material used to produce the solar cells and modules that convert solar
 energy into electricity.
     The new facility will be located in a Keystone Opportunity Improvement
 Zone. KOIZs work to develop a community's abandoned, unused, underutilized
 land and buildings into business districts.
     "We are honored to be part of Governor Rendell's vision," said Dr. York
 Tsuo, president of AE Polysilicon. "The amount of support we have received
 from the state and local governments and industry has made Pennsylvania the
 ideal state to locate our production facilities."
     The Bucks County Economic Development Corporation worked with the
 Governor's Action Team and AE Polysilicon to secure a $1.92 million
 financial package from the Department of Community and Economic Development
 that includes a $1.76 million loan through the Pennsylvania Industrial
 Development Authority, a $100,000 grant through the Opportunity Grant
 Program and $65,000 in customized job training funds.
     The company is eligible to apply for a $5.8 million loan through the
 Citizens Job Bank program, which offers low-interest loans to companies
 that commit to creating or expanding jobs in Pennsylvania.
     Governor Rendell said this investment, and similar ones throughout the
 state, are critical to Pennsylvania's future.
     "We've built a reputation as a national leader in the production and
 use of energy that is made in our own backyard from renewable sources.
 Having the ability to generate our own energy is a matter of independence
 and security, and is tremendous economic driver. If we could replace energy
 sources from foreign nations with home-grown alternatives, we could help
 Pennsylvania's companies and farmers gain access to a $30 billion market,"
 said Governor Rendell, referring to the amount of money Pennsylvanians
 spend each year on energy produced outside of the state.
     The Governor said rising energy costs pose a challenge to families and
 businesses alike, and that Pennsylvania should act now to cut energy
 consumption and attract new economic development projects that boost the
 state's ability to generate energy. The Governor said his Energy
 Independence Strategy provides a framework for reaching those goals.
     "The Energy Independence Strategy -- which I unveiled in February --
 will save consumers $10 billion in energy costs over the next decade,
 reduce Pennsylvania's reliance on foreign fuels and increase the state's
 clean energy production capacity," said the Governor. "Putting this
 strategy to work will allow us to make new investments in alternative
 energy projects like AE Polysilicon, create thousands of new jobs, and help
 our companies compete by bringing rising energy costs under control."
     The Energy Independence Strategy would accelerate the production of
 clean energy components and systems by making more than $100 million
 available in the form of venture capital, loans and grants so Pennsylvania
 firms can attract private sector investors and grow.
     New state resources would target up to $500 million for infrastructure
 improvements, construction, early project development costs and equipment
 purchases undertaken to attract private investment in energy-related
 economic development projects, including solar manufacturing; advanced coal
 technologies; biofuels; and energy conservation, efficiency, and energy
 demand management projects.
     One of the key components of the strategy, the Pennsylvania Sunshine
 Solar Initiative, will offer specific benefits to manufacturers, small
 businesses and homeowners and will provide production grants and rebates to
 jumpstart the use of solar energy and attract solar manufacturing
 companies, like AE Polysilicon, to the commonwealth.
     Funding for the Energy Independence Strategy will be generated by a
 minimal charge on electric power consumption. Similar charges are in place
 in 15 states and the District of Columbia. The charge is proposed at
 $0.0005 per kWh of electricity used.
     The AE Polysilicon project was coordinated by the Governor's Action
 Team, which is comprised of economic development professionals who report
 directly to Governor Rendell and serve as a single point-of-contact for
 businesses considering locating or expanding in Pennsylvania. The team
 works with domestic and international businesses and professional site
 consultants on projects possessing significant investment and job creation
     For more information on the Energy Independence Strategy, visit
     For information on the Governor's Action Team, the Citizens Job Bank
 program, KOIZs and other DCED programs, visit or call
 1-866-GONEWPA (1-866-466-3972).
     The Rendell administration is committed to creating a first-rate public
 education system, protecting our most vulnerable citizens and continuing
 economic investment to support our communities and businesses. To find out
 more about Governor Rendell's initiatives and to sign up for his weekly
 newsletter, visit his Web site at:
     Michael Smith
     717-579-8190 (cell)
     Kevin Ortiz (DCED)
     717-798-4843 (cell)

SOURCE Pennsylvania Office of the Governor