The Palm Beach Post reported that the Scripps Research Institute has started issuing home loans — I guess they heard about the sub-prime bonanza and decided to jump on the bandwagon. Despite sounding like they’ve branched into some wildly diversified operations, the loans come as a bribe an incentive to get top scientists to move to the Institute. One top recruit snagged a $1 million mortgage for an oceanfront condo that cost $850,000.  A good deal if you can get it.

Scripps won’t say why the mortgage exceeds the condo’s purchase price, or whether the loan was derived from a $310 million state grant used to attract the biomedical research powerhouse here in 2003. In the past year, five Scripps recruits were provided with mortgages totalling $1.4 million. The terms of the loans are being kept under wraps and Scripps will only say that the state’s agreement gives the institute “broad authority” to use grant money for employee compensation and benefits.

The million-dollar mortgage recently was filed in the public record. After The Palm Beach Post asked about it, Scripps notified the Scripps Florida Funding Corp., which oversees Scripps’ grant.

Scripps claims that the intense competition for scientists and the added housing troubles have led it to up the ante with housing loans. Scripps indicated that the main reason for the incentive packages is to recruit scientists who bring in big grants and intellectual property. This is an interesting case of using grant money to lure scientist into moving and bringing along more grant money.

This begs the question:  Are such incentives a good idea?

See also:  Are Tax Breaks for Biotech Worth the Price?

  Print This Post Print This Post  

2 Comments

  1. Notice: Object of class WP_Comment could not be converted to int in /hermes/bosnacweb01/bosnacweb01ad/b2262/ipw.patentba/public_html/wp/wp-content/plugins/polldaddy/rating.php on line 7

    […] Read More… Posted in |May 16th, 2008 by News| Leave a Comment […]

  2. Notice: Object of class WP_Comment could not be converted to int in /hermes/bosnacweb01/bosnacweb01ad/b2262/ipw.patentba/public_html/wp/wp-content/plugins/polldaddy/rating.php on line 7

    […] Patent Baristas wrote an interesting post today on Is Use of Home Loans to Attract Researchers a Good Idea?Here’s a quick excerpt The Palm Beach Post reported that the Scripps Research Institute has started issuing home loans — I guess they heard about the sub-prime bonanza and decided to jump on the bandwagon. Despite sounding like they’ve branched into some wildly diversified operations, the loans come as a bribe an incentive to get top scientists to move to the Institute. One top recruit snagged a $1 million mortgage for an oceanfront condo that cost $850,000.  A good deal if you can get it. Scripps won’t say why the […]