Tax breaks keeping Hitchiner Manufacturing in N.H.

$50 million expansion in Milford

Staff photo by DAMIEN FISHER Gov. Chris Sununu said New Hampshire is showing its commitment to fostering business through the incentives offered to keep Hitchiner's $50 million foundry in the Granite State.

MILFORD – Hitchiner Manufacturing announced Wednesday it plans to build a new $50 million, 85,000-square-foot foundry at its Milford plant.

Hitchiner CEO John Morrison III said the expansion will allow the company to create up to 85 new jobs, and it allows the firm to stay in New Hampshire.

“The expansion will help ensure the future of our current operations in the state, and

our continued contribution to the state and local economies,” he said.

Hitchiner almost went to another state to build the new foundry, Morrison said. The company looked at the cost of building in New Hampshire versus the cost of going elsewhere, and found it was initially too expensive to stay in the Granite State when adding up business taxes, state and local taxes, as wells as energy and construction costs in New Hampshire.

“We obviously had a large gap that we needed to close if we were to build here,” he said.

Hitchiner officials reached out to Gov. Chris Sununu, as well as Department of Business and Economic Affairs Commissioner Taylor Caswell, to work on a plan to keep the expansion in New Hampshire.

Morrison said the financial packages put together, including tax breaks and financing options through the New Hampshire Business Finance Authority, helped Hitchiner find a way to build the new foundry in Milford.

“Businesses don’t do these things on a whim,” Sununu said.

The work state and local officials did to make the expansion possible in Milford represents a new way of doing business in New Hampshire, Sununu said. The state wants to make sure companies can come to New Hampshire and build their businesses. While the Hitchiner expansion is a success, the state still faces issues with a workforce shortage and high energy prices.

“We still have a lot of work to do,” Sununu said.

Milford voters approved a five-year tax abatement to help Hitchiner. Under a warrant article passed at this year’s town meeting, the company will get a 50 percent abatement on its property taxes in the first year. The amount of the abatement percentage will go down 10 percent a year over the course of the five year period.

John Morrison IV, Hitchiner’s assistant treasurer, said there are no guarantees built into the financial incentives that require the company to create all 85 jobs.

The work on the expansion is slated to start later this year, with an anticipated opening in 2019. Hitchiner was founded in 1946 and makes castings and other components for manufacturing. In 2015, it closed its Littleton plant, consolidating more than 100 jobs. The company also has a location in Mexico.

Damien Fisher can be reached at 594-1245 or dfisher@nashuatelegraph.com or @Telegraph_DF.