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Micron to invest $15 billion in new Idaho fabrication plant, first of its kind in U.S. in 20 years

Micron to invest $15 billion in new Idaho fabrication plant
Posted at 8:55 AM, Sep 01, 2022

BOISE, Idaho — Micron will invest $15 billion in a new memory fabrication manufacturing facility in Boise, the first of its kind in the U.S. in 20 years.

The investment comes as the "first of Micron's multiple planned U.S. investments following the passage of the CHIPS and Science Act," company officials announced Thursday. The company plans to invest the $15 billion over the course of 10 years, with the goal of "ensuring domestic supply of leading-edge memory required for market segments like automotive and data center, fueled by accelerating adoption of artificial intelligence and 5G," according to a press release from Micron.

The expansion is expected to create more than 17,000 jobs, including around 2,000 direct Micron jobs, by the end of the decade, according to the announcement.

"Our new leading-edge memory manufacturing fab will fuel U.S. technology leadership, ensuring a reliable domestic supply of semiconductors that is critical to economic and national security," Micron President and CEO Sanjay Mehrotra said in a statement. "We also appreciate the support of Governor Little and his administration, Idaho state legislators, Mayor McLean and our partners at Idaho Power. We are proud of the positive impact this investment will have on the community and our more than 6,000 employees located in Boise, Micron’s headquarters and the epicenter of our innovation for over 40 years."

BoiseDev first reported the possibility of a Micron expansion last fall.

Related: ‘Mega fab’: Micron official won’t say Boise’s in the running for expansion – but won’t deny it either

Micron also announced plans to invest in Idaho K-12 STEM education programs and "increase focus on reaching underrepresented and rural student populations." The company plans to also work with local universities, including a new partnership with the College of Western Idaho.

The Idaho-based company will also invest in a "world-class childcare facility" to support the growing employee population, according to the release.

The investment is part of Micron's $150 billion global investment the company plans to make over the next decade in manufacturing and R&D.

President Joe Biden called the investment a "big win" for the country in a statement Wednesday.

Emilie Simons, assistant White House Press Secretary, said the investment will boost the supply chain overall and lower prices for semiconductor chips that are widely used.

"When we can strengthen our supply chains, we can also lower costs," Simons said. "During the pandemic we really saw that our supply chains were exposed for being extremely weak. We are very reliant on other countries like China for the goods we need. That started the ultimate semiconductor shortage; so when we make more of those semiconductors here at home, like Micron will be doing as of their new announcement today, that's actually going to increase our economic security and increase our national security."

Boise Mayor Lauren McLean called the investment a "once in a generation" investment and said it will be critical to the community's economic vitality.

"I’m so proud of the partnership it has taken to get to this point and excited for the opportunities continued collaboration brings," she said in a statement. "We looked hard at what we could do as a city to do our part to make sure this happened in and for our community knowing that, together with Micron, we will grow our economy, protect our open space and clean water and attract and sustain a diverse, dynamic workforce."

Micron expansion impacts

Don Day, founder of Idaho News 6 partner BoiseDev, has covered Micron since the mid 90's. Day said the deal Micron got from the state is unclear.
But at the local level, Ada County won't add much to it's tax roles.

"We do know that in Ada County, Micron Technology has a cap on it's property tax burden due to 2008 legislation, so they can build 15 billion dollars worth of stuff out there and not pay any more property taxes," Day said. "If you or i expand our house and put on a new room we're going to pay additional property taxes, micron doesn't have that."

Day also said Micron will likely need some land to expand it's production plant and may have to make a deal with Simplot, which owns most of the land around the campus.

Watch the full interview here:

Don Day breaks down Micron expansion