Measure to support innovation, entrepreneurship earns committee OK

Grohman’s bill aims to build on Maine Technology Institute’s successes

Rep. Grohman

AUGUSTA – A bill from Rep. Martin Grohman to support job creation through innovation and entrepreneurship in Maine earned support from a panel of lawmakers Tuesday. The vote was unanimous among those present.

“Supporting innovators and entrepreneurs is key to our economic success. Maine Technology Institute makes targeted investments in Maine companies that pay off, and with our support it can be even more effective,” said Grohman, D-Biddeford. “This measure will allow Maine Technology Institute to realize its full potential to support growth in technology-intensive sectors from biotechnology to the forest products industry.”

The bill would broaden the scope of Maine Technology Institute’s work by allowing it to establish additional programs and collaborate with other organizations to foster small business creation, provide training and mentorship opportunities and protect intellectual property.

Maine Technology Institute, or MTI, was created by the Legislature in 1999 to support and invest in research and development and the commercialization of products and services in targeted technology sectors. Its programs have invested in projects across the state while leveraging hundreds of millions of dollars in private sector matching investment.

At a recent public hearing on the bill, Grohman told the Legislature’s Labor, Commerce, Research and Economic Development Committee how the composite decking company he founded was able to grow in Biddeford thanks to a grant from the institute. Grohman has since sold the company, but it remains locally owned and employs about 30 people.

Measures of Growth 2017, the annual report from Maine Economic Growth Council and Maine Development Foundation on the state’s economic growth, highlighted both increased business creation and additional research and development investment as key factors in creating a sustainable economic future.

The measure, LD 1324, now advances to the House and the Senate for consideration.

Grohman is serving his second term in the Maine House. He represents part of Biddeford and serves on the Legislature’s Criminal Justice and Public Safety Committee.

Contact:

Lindsay Crete [Grohman], c. 231-1442

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