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Finger Lakes Regional Economic Development Council Requests Public Input for 2014 Progress Report

(July 21, 2014)

Finger Lakes Regional Economic Development Council Requests Public Input for 2014 Progress Report

The Finger Lakes Regional Economic Development Council (FLREDC) today released its 2014 draft progress report for public review. The public can view the report at http://regionalcouncils.ny.gov/content/finger-lakes and has until Friday, July 25 to submit input to NYS-FingerLakes@esd.ny.gov. The final report for the nine-county region, composed of Genesee, Livingston, Monroe, Ontario, Orleans, Seneca, Wayne, Wyoming and Yates counties, will be voted on by the council at its August 6 meeting, and then submitted to the State on August 15.

“The Finger Lakes region is in the midst of a fundamental economic transformation, spearheaded by the strategic framework created by Governor Cuomo and the Finger Lakes Regional Economic Development Council,” said Finger Lakes Regional Economic Development Council Co-Chairs, University of Rochester President Joel Seligman and Wegmans Food Markets CEO Danny Wegman. “Our Council continues to work collaboratively to lay the groundwork for both immediate and sustained economic growth in key sectors and support projects necessary to promote innovation, enhance competitiveness and supply companies with skilled employees. We encourage the public to review our draft progress report and submit their comments. It is only through a shared economic development vision that our region will continue to evolve into an increasingly successful and diverse knowledge-based economy.”

The Finger Lakes region’s 2011 strategic plan, “Accelerating Our Transformation,” leverages the region’s strategic advantages in academic research, workforce talent and high quality of life to position the area as a national leader and innovator in a diverse array of next generation technologies. The plan focuses on strategies that optimize business creation, retention and expansion; strengthens academic and industry partnerships; aligns workforce development efforts with the needs of key industry sectors; and invests in community and industrial development and infrastructure. For Round IV, the FLREDC is once again focusing on the implementation of the region’s strategic plan and identifying significant economic development projects to invest in. The Governor has directed up to $750 million in State resources to be made available in 2014 to support the economic development priorities of all 10 regions and spur job creation across the state, including $220 million in competitive funds from Empire State Development. In the first three rounds of the Regional Council initiative, the Finger Lakes region was awarded $225 million in state support for 266 projects across the region.

Pending final approval at its August 6 meeting, the FLREDC has recommended transformative priority projects and identified a number of other projects that it believes will advance important workforce training, community development, tourism and small business expansion objectives for 2014 funding.

The Council has also put forth proposals that respond to the Governor’s initiatives to increase global trade, attract and grow new technology companies, confront poverty, strengthen the region’s SUNY institutions, rebuild communities after natural disasters, and support the state’s veterans:

  • The Finger Lakes Global NY Plan will build upon the region’s leadership in exports (second only to New York City) and create the comprehensive and coordinated set of international trade services necessary to both support existing exporters and enable more firms to enter global markets.
  • The state’s START-UP NY initiative will be an essential tool in creating the academic-private sector partnerships necessary to attract new companies and spur the growth of new firms based on academic innovation. The region’s public and private universities and colleges have embraced this program and are among its first – and largest – applicants.
  • The SUNY 2020 program will provide the support necessary to build the education and training programs that will prepare the region’s students and displaced workers to take advantage of the opportunities created by the region’s growing high tech, advanced manufacturing, and agriculture-related industries.
  • The devastating May 2014 floods in Yates County generated an unprecedented and immediate community, state, and federal response. The resulting efforts will strengthen the effected communities, and make them more resilient and better prepared for future storms.
  • New initiatives will better connect and coordinate the region’s veterans of the armed services with the resources, support, training, and counseling they require to enter the workforce.

To learn more about the FLREDC, visit http://regionalcouncils.ny.gov/content/finger-lakes.

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, supporting the creation or retention of more than 100,000 jobs. For more information on the Regional Councils, visit www.regionalcouncils.ny.gov.

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