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Finger Lakes Regional Economic Development Council Puts Out Call to Community for Strategic Ideas and Priority Projects

FLREDC looking for funding ideas for the state Consolidated Funding Application and Upstate Revitalization Initiative
(May 13, 2015)

Finger Lakes Regional Economic Development Council Puts Out Call to Community for Strategic Ideas and Priority Projects

The Finger Lakes Regional Economic Development Council (FLREDC) today put out a call for Upstate Revitalization Initiative (URI) strategy ideas, as well as project ideas, across its nine-county Finger Lakes region, which includes Genesee, Livingston, Monroe, Ontario, Orleans, Seneca, Wayne, Wyoming and Yates counties.

“This year we have the unprecedented opportunity to compete for $500 million in State support over the next five years,” said Finger Lakes Regional Economic Development Council Co-Chairs, University of Rochester President Joel Seligman and Wegmans Food Markets CEO Danny Wegman. “Our basic mission remains the same: We seek the very best ideas for our region, which has such an amazing range of talents. We will engage as many stakeholders involved as possible in this effort to build consensus around the strongest possible plan, understanding we will ultimately not be able to support every proposed idea for the Upstate Revitalization Initiative.”

Two Ways to Submit Ideas to the FLREDC
The FLREDC encourages businesses, educational institutions, local governments, not-for-profit groups and other stakeholders to submit ideas for consideration in one of two ways online:

NOTE: The new Priority Project Request Form is an optional submission that replaces the former FLREDC Letter of Interest to help engage with FLREDC stakeholders and workgroups. An official Consolidated Funding Application (see below) must still be submitted to be considered for State funding.

It is highly recommended that interested applicants review the goals, strategies and criteria for projects in the FLREDC Strategic Plan prior to submitting ideas. This document is available at

About the Upstate Revitalization Initiative
Each of the seven Upstate regions eligible for the $1.5 billion Upstate Revitalization Initiative will submit a “Revitalization Plan” as an addendum to their progress report. In addition to the priorities outlined in the 2015 Progress Report update, the Upstate Revitalization Plan will provide a more detailed analysis of the region and develop ideas and strategies to transform the regional economy. The purpose of each region’s Revitalization Plan will be to 1) provide a well-researched and credible argument that the region is ready for revitalization; and 2) to describe the transformation that will happen in the region if granted those funds. Concepts, such as job creation, increasing net wealth in the region, private sector investment, and other key indicators, will be addressed in the FLREDC’s Revitalization Plan.

As part of the Revitalization Plan, each region will submit a list of initial projects they recommend for funding should they be selected a “Best Plan Awardee” of the competition. Each URI region will be required to identify potential projects seeking URI funds and may continue to do so after the CFA closes.

Examples of the types of projects or how funds will be used include:

  • Infrastructure targeted to job creation and economic growth;
  • Acquisition and development of sites for industrial growth;
  • Job training and employment readiness, particularly when focused on key local economic sectors;
  • Encouragement of and support to start-up companies and their founders;
  • Creation of venture capital funds;
  • Direct support of companies in sectors targeted by REDC;
  • Support innovation, particularly college and university based;
  • Targeted support to companies to assist them in keeping up with technological advances; and
  • Creation of opportunities for hard to place workers, including veterans, ex-offenders, low income, under educated, refugees, immigrants and persons with special needs.

About the Consolidated Funding Application
As part of Governor Cuomo’s efforts to improve the state’s economic development model, the CFA was created to streamline and expedite the grant application process. The CFA process marks a fundamental shift in the way state resources are allocated, ensuring less bureaucracy and greater efficiency to fulfill local economic development needs. The CFA serves as the single entry point for access to economic development funding, ensuring applicants no longer have to slowly navigate multiple agencies and sources without any mechanism for coordination. Now, economic development projects use the CFA as a support mechanism to access multiple state funding sources through one application, making the process quicker, easier, and more productive. To access the CFA, please visit

About the Regional Economic Development Councils
The Regional Economic Development Council initiative is a key component of Governor Andrew M. Cuomo’s transformative approach to economic development. In 2011, Governor Cuomo established 10 Regional Councils to develop long-term strategic plans to strengthen and grow their regional economies. The Councils are public-private partnerships made up of local experts and stakeholders from business, academia, local government, and non-governmental organizations. The Regional Councils have redefined the way New York invests in jobs and economic growth by putting in place a community-based, bottom up approach and establishing a competitive process for State resources. After four rounds of the REDC process, nearly $3 billion has been awarded to more than 3,100 projects consistent with each region’s Strategic Plan and are projected to result in the creation or retention of more than 150,000 jobs. For more information on the Regional Councils, please visit