GLEN BURNIE, Md.—When Chesapeake Bay Candle decided to build a U.S. factory, founders Mei Xu and David Wang thought it would take nine months and cost $2.5 million.
But $3.5 million and 13 months later, the couple is still waiting for their final occupancy permit. A temporary sign is draped across the front of the beige concrete structure, a former liquor warehouse on the outskirts of Baltimore.
"I think our government needs to ask itself, 'Are we really ready for business to come back from Asia?'," says Ms. Xu, a Chinese immigrant who with her husband founded Pacific Trade International, the Rockville, Md.-based company behind the Chesapeake Bay brand, in 1994. "I'm not sure it is."more