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MARCH 2023 I PCB007 MAGAZINE 9 e center's reporting is consistent with the priorities that the CHIPS program has estab- lished. e Commerce Department seems to be saying that while state and local govern- ments are required to offer applicants incen- tives, in order for those incentives to meet the program's priorities, they must be structured in such a way as to directly improve manufac- turing infrastructure. Taking the easy route by providing a state/local tax abatement, for example, could be used by the recipient sim- ply to improve the corporate bottom line, not build out infrastructure. Commerce is looking for infrastructure, site, or workforce improve- ments from these incentives—meaningful change, in other words. is sort of prioritiza- tion by the Commerce Department should be encouraging to smaller shops in working with local and state governments to effect some real change in their own businesses. We found this issue to be quite interest- ing to compile. As you read the interviews, look for the larger themes that are suggested or implied in each conversation, which become clearer as you move from interview to interview. As always, we encourage you to contact us with your feedback. PCB007 References 1. "Biden-Harris Administration Launches First CHIPS For America Funding Opportunity," Feb. 28, 2023, U.S. Department of Commerce. 2. "Feds make it clear for Oregon lawmakers: no race to the bottom to compete for CHIPS Act dol- lars," by Daniel Hauser, March 1, 2023, Oregon Cen- ter for Public Policy. body is different; everybody has their own story. It's these exact nuanced conversations that set this issue apart. We spent a lot of time talking to fabricators, and while each has a specific set of needs, you're going to find some common themes. It's definitely must-read content. One side note: I want to discuss the rapidly- evolving CHIPS Act, legislation that passed last year. e U.S. Department of Commerce is now communicating the process it will use to allocate funds. e department has made several announcements about its intentions, each worded slightly differently, but with t he same intentions. Five main priorities will guide the CHIPS for America program: catalyzing private investment, protecting taxpayer dol- lars, building a skilled and diverse workforce, engaging with U.S. partners, and driving eco- nomic opportunity and inclusive economic growth. 1 Hillsboro, Oregon (my hometown), is the base of operations for Intel's microprocessor development teams, and the CHIPS Act pro- grams could have a significant impact on the local economy. Understandably, several local/ state policy watchdog groups are reporting on the state's activities with the CHIPS Act. In cit- ing the Commerce Department's announce- ment, the Oregon Center for Public Policy recently shared 2 : " The Depar tment encourages projects that include state and local incentive pack- ages capable of creating spillover benefits that improve regional economic resilience and support a robust semiconductor eco- system, beyond assisting a single company. Such incentives might include investments in workforce, education, site preparation, or infrastructure (including transit or utili- ties) that are not limited to the applicant, but designed to benefit both the applicant and the broader community. Likewise, the Depart- ment will place less weight on incentives (such as direct tax abatements) with less potential for spillover benefits." (Emphasis added.) Nolan Johnson is managing editor of SMT007 Magazine and co-managing editor of PCB007 Magazine. Nolan brings 30 years of career experience focused almost entirely on electronics design and manufacturing. To read other columns or to contact Johnson, click here.

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