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Finger Lakes Regional Economic Development Council Meets, Hears Presentations From Workgroups

(May 21, 2014)

Finger Lakes Regional Economic Development Council Meets, Hears Presentations From Workgroups

The Finger Lakes Regional Economic Development Council (FLREDC) met today and was presented with a series of presentations from each of the council’s 19 workgroups. The presentations are the first since Governor Andrew Cuomo awarded the FLREDC $59.8 million in Round III of the Regional Economic Development Council competition in December 2013, and the FLREDC’s Executive Committee reviewed the workgroup membership and added three new workgroups. These volunteer groups have been charged with enhancing the region’s competitiveness and helping the council measure the progress being made within the region, particularly the overall Council goal of 50,000 new jobs by the end of 2016.

“Our workgroups are the heart of the council’s work and pivotal to implementing our strategic plan and monitoring our region’s progress as we work to transform our economy,” said Finger Lakes Regional Economic Development Council Co-Chairs, University of Rochester President Joel Seligman and Wegmans Food Markets CEO Danny Wegman. “We deeply appreciate and thank the workgroups, which are populated by volunteer community stakeholders with industry expertise, for their dedication. Through the workgroups we are able to fulfill Governor Cuomo’s vision of each region pursuing and investing in its own economic destiny.”

All 19 workgroups—comprised of more than 300 regional stakeholders—have updated their “dashboards,” which helps the council track progress being made within the region. This is a standard template populated with information unique to each workgroup, such as: mission/vision, existing sector environment, performance measures, priority projects for future funding, progress on state-funded priority projects and any other key information that can be tracked on a regular basis to measure performance. These dashboards, the product of countless hours donated by work group members, will serve as the foundation for this year’s progress report.

The FLREDC co-chairs wish to acknowledge and thank the following workgroup co-chairs:

  • Advanced Manufacturing – new co-chairs to be named
  • Agriculture & Food Processing - John Noble, Jim Pierce
  • Business Services - Ken Kaisen
  • Community Development – Stuart Mitchell, Jason Molino, Del Smith
  • Eastman Business Park – Mike Alt, Mark Peterson
  • Energy Innovation - Matt Fronk, Courtney Reich
  • Entrepreneurship & Innovation - Theresa Mazzullo, Christine Whitman
  • Global NY (new) – Scott Bass, Leah George, Mary Wilmot
  • Healthcare - Brad Berk, Chris Booth, Paul Speranza
  • Higher Education - Bill Destler, John Halstead
  • Infrastructure & Transportation - Bill Carpenter, Sergio Esteban
  • Life Sciences - Rob Clark, Maurice Zauderer
  • Opportunity Agenda – Anne Kress, Hilda Rosario-Escher, Lovely Warren
  • Optics, Photonics & Imaging - Jay Eastman, Jim Sydor
  • SUNY 2020 (new)
  • Sustainability – Thomas Mitchell, Nabil Nasr
  • Tourism & Arts - Don Jeffries, Kelly Kiebala, Tom Parrish
  • Veterans (new)
  • Workforce Development - Anne Kress, Augustin Melendez, Paul Speranza

The workgroups were asked to prepare their priority project recommendations for Round IV of the Consolidated Funding Application (CFA) at the next meeting of the FLREDC on June 25.

The FLREDC SUNY 2020, Veterans and Global NY workgroups were recently formed as part of Governor Cuomo’s initiatives in Round IV of the REDC competition. The Veterans Work Group will work to promote participation by veterans in the state’s Consolidated Funding Application (CFA) process, and develop strategies to encourage other potential CFA applicants to include workforce goals related to Veteran’s employment. The SUNY 2020 Work Group will assist SUNY campuses with their planning efforts for the NYSUNY 2020 Challenge Grant Program. The Global NY workgroup will develop and implement global marketing and export strategies, building foreign trade and investment approaches into the council’s strategic planning efforts.

New York State is now accepting CFAs from businesses, municipalities, not-for-profits and the public for Round IV of Governor Cuomo’s Regional Council initiative. The CFA serves as the single entry point for applicants to access up to $750 million in economic development funding available this year. The 2014 Available CFA Resource Manual, which outlines the funds available from 33 state agency programs, and the 2014 REDC Guidebook, which provides the competitive guidelines for this year, are both available at

In the first three rounds of the Regional Council initiative, the Finger Lakes region was awarded $224.8 million in state support for 266 projects. To learn more about the FLREDC, visit

About the Regional Economic Development Councils The Regional Economic Development Council initiative (REDC) is a key component of Governor Andrew M. Cuomo’s transformative approach to State investment and economic development. In 2011, Governor Cuomo established 10 Regional Councils to develop long-term strategic plans for economic growth for their regions. 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 three rounds of the REDC process, more than $2 billion has been awarded to job creation and community development projects consistent with each region’s strategic plans, resulting in creation or retention of more than 100,000 jobs. For more information on the Regional Councils, visit