- New research facility at Entrada Park to supply jobs, research opportunities and economic advantage to Los Alamos County
The New Mexico Consortium (NMC) reported that it has created 20 new jobs since it received a major economic development grant from Los Alamos County in March of 2012.
The NMC, Los Alamos County, and Los Alamos National Laboratory (LANL) jointly recruited Dr. Richard Sayre and his team to Los Alamos in 2011. Los Alamos County contributed $2.6 million to the effort through the New Mexico Local Economic Development Act (LEDA).
The grant supports the construction of the NMC biological research facility now being built in the Entrada Business Park near the Holiday Inn Express and the Los Alamos Coop Market.
Los Alamos National Bank provided $6 million in financing for the project. Dr. Sayre and his team will be the initial occupants of the building.
Dr. Sayre’s research program is the cornerstone of a joint LANL/NMC plant biology initiative involving researchers from universities, NMC, LANL and industry.
What Research will occur at this New Bio-lab?
Dr. Sayre is a leading researcher in algae and plant cell metabolism. His research is an area of intense national and international competition and has tremendous commercial potential. Dr. Sayre, who holds a joint appointment with NMC and LANL, is has helped lead research consortiums and programs totaling $45 million since 2005. Dr. Sayre brought $3 million in research programs to Los Alamos.
Dr. Sayre’s research team is internationally known for their world-class expertise in bio-fuel feedstock productivity, crop protection, and preprocessing of algae prior to conversion to fuels. Other areas of research include the control of mosquito populations that carry malaria, pioneering work on vaccine delivery, and research on improving plant nutrition and productivity.
Dr. Sayre works closely with LANL’s plant genetics/bio-energy research group and the NM Universities to pursue a broad range of research funding in biology and biotechnology. As the new NMC biological facility grows, benefits to the County include new high tech jobs and diversification of research in a range of biological areas.
Economic benefits to Los Alamos County
The NMC’s economic development grant is secured by the building and contingent on performance standards. The grant requires the NMC to create 32 jobs by 2017. By March 1, 2013 the NMC was required to create seven jobs. The NMC reported 20 new jobs created in their first progress report to the County this month.
The NMC estimates it generated $1.32 million in annual salaries in 2013. Conservative economic models predict that new NMC payroll generates an additional $600,000 in “indirect and induced” wages within Los Alamos County. Indirect and induced wages are generated when money expended by the NMC is recycled through the community in the form of local purchases made by employees or suppliers to the NMC.
The NMC will continue to report annually to the county to document their performance against in the standards established in the grant. The total economic impact of the grant on the County is expected to be over $12 million dollars, including $2.2 million directly to Los Alamos County.
The research programs supported by the grant have a high potential of generating commercial spin offs. Four biotechnology companies have resulted from Dr. Sayre’s research in the last 10 years. Dr. Sayre’s current research activities have similar commercial potential.
About the New Mexico Consortium
The New Mexico Consortium is a non-profit research and educational institution formed by the University of New Mexico, New Mexico State University and New Mexico Institute of Mining and Technology.
According to the NMC Executive Director, Katharine Chartrand, “The New Mexico Consortium has an effective model for facilitating collaborations between LANL, universities and industry. In four years we have received more than $30 million in grants and contracts. We’ve grown to be an $8 million a year research organization, employing over 100 people in a very challenging funding environment.”
The NMC is currently one of the largest technology-based businesses in the County. The NMC supports a university-type research environment in Los Alamos County. The NMC pursues research in plant biology, advanced computing, biomedical engineering and modeling and analysis. To learn more about the NMC see their webpage at www.newmexicoconsortium.org.
May 9-10 Opening Workshop to Celebrate New Bio-lab
The NMC and LANL will celebrate the opening of the research greenhouse with a two-day technical workshop on May 9 -10, 2013. The technical workshops formally launch NMC/LANL joint initiatives in Biomedical Technology and Plant Biology.
The NMC will provide tours of the laboratory to researchers and the interested public during the workshop. Follow the NMC website for information and registration for the technical workshop.
For additional information contact Shannan Yeager, Director of Community Relations, at 412-6898 or firstname.lastname@example.org.