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[whitespace] Giveaway Contest

Morgan Hill--Though Christmas is still months away, presents keep falling down the chimney of Candescent Technologies, a local high tech manufacturer. On September 23, Morgan Hill offered the company $9 million to build a massive manufacturing plant in town. Now San Jose plans to offer its own gift: A $10 million low interest loan which the city's Redevelopment Agency hopes will be enough to woo the company to Edenvale.

Candescent, with millions of dollars in federal government subsidies, as well as backing from Compaq and Hewlett Packard, developed a new technology for flat screens, like those used on laptops. Through a process that the company says is similar to computer chip manufacturing, Candescent will create new screens that don't blur and are more energy efficient. Now that the product is ready to build, the company has been shopping for a place to build its new manufacturing plant.

Candescent estimates it will need a massive structure--three times the size of Intel's Santa Clara plant--which will discharge up to 400,000 gallons of waste water a day. Morgan Hill was the first to make a cash offer to the company, a $9 million loan and tax break. Mayor Dennis Kennedy, a proponent of the plant, says the loan is really just a cash giveaway. As long as Candescent stays in town, the company won't need to pay back a penny.

Despite Morgan Hill's generous offer, Candescent still has not bitten.

Now San Jose has decided to get into the fray with a loan offer of its own. The Redevelopment Agency is hoping to lure the company to the south end of the city with an offer that beats Morgan Hill by a million dollars. But unlike Morgan Hill's grant, Candescent would be required to pay back all of the loan to San Jose's Redevelopment Agency within ten years.
Jim Rendon

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