Subsidized solar manufacturing company closes facility

The Amonix solar manufacturing plant in Las Vegas, Nev. has closed its facility about a year after it opened, according to The Las Vegas Review-Journal. The company was subsidized by more than $20 million in federal tax credits and grants.

Amonix received $6 million in federal tax credits for the manufacturing facility and a $15.6 million grant from the U.S. Department of Energy in 2007 for research and development. Amonix created and manufactured concentrated photovoltaic (PV) solar power systems.

Rhone Resch, president and CEO of the Solar Energy Industries Association (SEIA), said the announcement showed that the solar industry is still evolving.

"The closure of any plant and loss of jobs is always unfortunate," Resch said. "Amonix plans to restructure its operations to build a successful long-term future. Amonix has been supported with great hope by an array of private investors as well as Republican and Democratic policymakers, who all understood our need to invest in this growing industry. None of them expected this innovative company led by a true American entrepreneur to close its doors; but that's the reality of today's intensely competitive solar industry."

The company announced 200 layoffs in January, one month after CEO Brian Robert­son was killed in a plane crash in Penn­sylvania.

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