VGTI Florida Provides Update on Wind-Down Process
The Vaccine & Gene Therapy Institute of Florida (VGTI Florida) today
provided an update on the orderly wind-down of its operations, including
plans to turn over remaining assets to its two creditors, the City of
Port St. Lucie (PSL) and the State of Florida. VGTI Florida also
reported that it has fully completed the shut down and decommissioning
process with all labs and equipment professionally sanitized. This
effort was coordinated with the appropriate regulatory agencies to
ensure a safe and secure facility. Additionally, the 100,000 sq.ft.
biomedical research building’s overall safety was audited by a
third-party, independent biosafety consulting firm.
Despite ongoing litigation with the City of Port St. Lucie (PSL), VGTI
Florida has been cooperating with PSL’s staff and representatives in
sharing the details of its wind-down plan. These communications have
been voluntary and have been occurring outside of the formal legal
discovery process. PSL’s staff and representatives have toured VGTI
Florida on multiple occasions in recent weeks and have been granted full
access to the entire facility to inspect contents and confirm safety.
Despite VGTI Florida’s offer to transfer ownership of the facility to
PSL by October 1, 2015, City Hall is not yet prepared to take title. The
parties are in the process of negotiating the terms of an agreed court
order appointing a receiver over the building to manage and protect it
until PSL finalizes its plans for the building. In the interim, VGTI
Florida has retained the company, WorkingBuildings, a leading,
international, quality assurance consulting firm with extensive
expertise in laboratory management and operations. WorkingBuildings will
continue to maintain the VGTI Florida facility and all equipment until
the building is turned over to the receiver.
Most of the equipment at VGTI Florida was purchased with grant funding
from the State of Florida. VGTI Florida has been cooperating with State
officials to ensure a proper transfer of those assets back to the
Department of Economic Opportunity (DEO) and other relevant State
All of VGTI Florida’s remaining Port St. Lucie employees will be laid
off by the end of today. Institute founder, Jay Nelson, Ph.D., will
serve as Chairman, President and CEO until the legal entity is dissolved.
While VGTI Florida’s closure is greatly disappointing, the Institute
offers its heartfelt gratitude and thanks to the State of Florida, our
local legislative delegation and to the residents of Port St. Lucie and
surrounding Treasure Coast communities. In a continued spirit of
partnership, VGTI Florida has been assisting the St. Lucie Economic
Development Council (EDC) and Enterprise Florida in their efforts to
market the facility to potential buyers and/or tenants. VGTI Florida
remains committed to maximizing the value of its remaining assets for
the benefit of the State of Florida and City of Port St. Lucie.
About VGTI Florida:
The Vaccine & Gene Therapy Institute of Florida (VGTI Florida) is an
independent, 501(c)(3), non-profit, biomedical research institute
established in 2008. For more information, please visit: www.vgtifl.org.
Douglas W. Calder, 772-345-5637
Copyright Business Wire 2015Business WireOctober 1, 2015 - 1:45 PM EDTNews by QuoteMediawww.quotemedia.com