State: $2.5M to keep EIT jobs local

By Dave Greber

State: $2.5M to keep EIT jobs local

September 23, 2013 Updated Sep 24, 2013 at 9:06 AM EDT

(WBNG Binghamton) The same week it's scheduled for the auction block, the state of New York is sweetening the pie for buyers of the embattled Endicott Interconnect Technologies.

Broome County officials confirmed late Monday night that New York's economic development arm, Empire State Development, will offer $2.5 million to the buyer of EIT -- so long as they maintain the company's 575 jobs in Endicott.

EIT filed for bankruptcy protection in mid-July.

Integrian Holdings LLC had initially set itself up as a prime bidder, entering a purchase agreement with EI for $250,000.

Integrian is owned by James T. Matthews, a minority shareholder of EIT.

The bidding and selling process came under fire from creditors, but most of those objections were cleared up in court with Integrian taking a step back.

Officials with Integrian said they are still interested but didn't feel their position as lead bidder was worth the conflict it generated.

As a result, the process was opened to additional bidders last month.

Broome County Executive Debbie Preston said the promise of maintaining jobs locally is paramount to the success of the local economy.

"Debbie believes that keeping 575 jobs in Broome County is extremely important," said County Deputy Executive Bijoy Datta. "She worked all weekend with the IDA (Industrial Development Agency) and Empire State Development to get this offer on the table. There are 575 families that depend on it and she’s doing everything she can to save those jobs."

The auction is scheduled for Thursday in Utica, according to court records filed Monday.