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Keeping Jobs In State Good, Luring New Ones Better

Hartford Courant Editorial

July 03, 2012

Ideally, the state would use the incentive money in Gov.Dannel P. Malloy's well-intentioned "First Five" program to lure companies from other states to locate and grow in Connecticut. Instead, most of the grants aimed at job creation are going to companies already here to prevent them from leaving.

Last week, for example, it was announced that East-Hartford-based CareCentrix Inc., which now will move to downtown Hartford, is the fifth company to win incentives from the governor's First Five program. It could qualify for up to $24 million in grants for growing its job base in the capital city.

According to its CEO, Eric Reimer, CareCentrix had actively considered moving its East Hartford headquarters and call-center operations to Florida or Kansas, where it also does business.

Earlier in June, Mr. Malloy announced a First Five package of up to $51 million in tax credits, a grant and loan for Alexion Pharmaceuticals to move to New Haven from Cheshire and add 200 to 300 jobs.

The other First Five companies named in the past year are Cigna, which moved its world headquarters from Philadelphia to Bloomfield; ESPN, adding a large studio building in Bristol; and NBC Sports, consolidating operations in Stamford. The program offers state aid to large and mid-size companies adding at least 200 employees.

It's good to retain and grow jobs at companies that are already here, to be sure. It's especially good that Carecentrix will pump jobs into downtown Hartford, which has suffered employment losses and high office vacancy in recent years and can use a shot in the arm.

But it will be great when Connecticut once again becomes an employment magnet, drawing companies and jobs from far and wide beyond our borders.

Reprinted with permission of the Hartford Courant. To view other stories on this topic, search the Hartford Courant Archives at http://www.courant.com/archives.
| Last update: September 25, 2012 |
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