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Mohawk Valley Regional Economic Development Council Submits 2014 Progress Report

Action Plan For 2014 – Sustaining Momentum – Builds Upon Region’s Success As Statewide Top Performer In 2013
(August 15, 2014)

Mohawk Valley Regional Economic Development Council Submits 2014 Progress Report

Round IV Priority Projects invest in Technology, Smart Growth, and Expanded Opportunity

The Mohawk Valley Regional Economic Development Council (MVREDC) today submitted its annual progress report to the State, detailing the Council’s accomplishments in advancing the strategies included in its five-year strategic plan. The report, which is entitled “Sustaining Momentum,” describes the Council’s significant achievements, adherence to core strategies, an aggressive implementation agenda, and an update on priority projects awarded resources over the past three rounds.

Round III was a big year for the MVREDC, as the Council earned Top Performer status; catalyzing new job growth, innovation, and revitalization across the Mohawk Valley. State investments in advanced manufacturing, training programs, and infrastructure continues to be instrumental in the transformation of the Regional economy; and the Council seeks to sustain this new momentum in Round IV with their 2014 Action Plan.

The progress report can be found at http://regionalcouncils.ny.gov/content/mohawk-valley.

“The Mohawk Valley Regional Council earned top performer distinction in 2013, attracting more than $80 million in assistance for economic and community development projects across the six-county Mohawk Valley Region,” said MVREDC Co-chairs Dr. Robert Geer, Senior Vice President of SUNY Polytechnic Institute and Lawrence T. Gilroy III, President of Gilroy, Kernan & Gilroy, Inc. “Evidence of the momentum the Council has helped to establish can be seen in transformational projects like the Center for Computer Chip Commercialization, as well as the new jobs being created at expanding businesses and economic activity in our communities. Governor Cuomo’s vision for a regional approach to economic development is already paying off for the Mohawk Valley and we are continuing to build on that success with our strong submission for Round IV.”

The Mohawk Valley kicked of this year’s competition by convening a first-ever Regional Summit in Canajoharie on April 30th. Energized by the collaborative spirit of the summit, businesses, colleges, and communities crafted over 150 CFA proposals aimed at strengthening our economy.

In July, the MVREDC convened to endorse a slate of priority and regionally-significant projects for REDC 4.0, providing the framework and foundation of Sustaining Momentum. The diverse field of proposed projects is focused on growing jobs, enabling innovation, building resiliency, forging new partnerships, revitalizing communities, and opening doors of opportunity to citizens across the Valley. Some of these projects include:

UAS Test Range Instrumentation, proposed by the Northeast UAS Airspace Integration Research Alliance (NUAIR) will supply aircraft tracking data Unmanned Aerial Systems operators, giving the Federal Aviation Administration the potential to lead the development of a Detect and Avoid system for safe UAS operations in U.S. airspace.

SUNY Cobleskill Dairy Processing Center proposes to build on the regional economic strengths of agriculture and food processing through construction and operation of a Dairy Processing Center. Funding would be used build and equip the 3,000-square-foot building to address the critical need in the northeast for qualified technicians and managers in the food-dairy processing sectors, as well as the lack of access to processing infrastructure for dairy producers wishing to tap into local value-added food marketing opportunities.

Tryon Technology Park Incubator Center, Phase II would disconnect the sewer and water systems at the former state prison site from an adjoining corrections facility and the reconnection to the local municipal system.

Bellinger Brook Community Preservation Project would address damage sites along Bellinger Brook near Herkimer High School, Church Street, Maple Grove Bridge and elsewhere to improve the flood resiliency of the Village. Also proposed by the NY Rising Community Recovery plan, the project will help Herkimer County to build back better.

Upper Susquehanna Regional Ag Center would create a multi-purpose 40,000-square-foot facility situated in the Oneonta triangle between Main and Market Streets.

123 Hotel Street Development will convert a vacant, historic Erie Canal era structure in Utica into a dynamic mixed-use development to include upscale market rate living space in downtown Utica and allow for the creation of several new businesses delivering or creating locally produced goods.

Assistive Technology Services is a partnership between SUNY Polytechnic Institute and Sitrin Health Care would address the rehabilitation of wounded soldiers facing barriers to re-employment after returning home from military service. The Assistive Technology laboratory would customize commercially available equipment to more fully restore functionality, thereby enabling the soldiers to return to work.

Beechgrove Buildout would renovate a 143,000-square-foot vacant area into an industry standard, high-tech area for relocation of an industrial computer factory to create space for the advanced design and manufacturing of electronic products used for military, industrial, and commercial applications

Center for Nano Cyber, representing the next quantum leap for Nano Utica, FSMC will direct the construction of a 50,000-square-foot Nano Cyber Security, Reliability and Quality Assurance innovation/training facility in Utica that will host private sector anchor tenants.

ANDRO Full Spectrum Exploitation Laboratory Expansion would expand its Software Defined Radio laboratories and to renovate an attached, vacant, 4,230-square-foot annex building to house additional laboratory and office space to support of Cyber, Nanotech, and UAS regional concentrations.

Richfield Commerce Park would create a 100-plus acre business park near the Village of Richfield Springs. The park will lead to job creation and private investment in a variety of sectors including agriculture-related processing, data centers, and manufacturing connected to semiconductor manufacturing in the Utica-Rome area. Edmeston CSD Robotics and Automation Program is a workforce alignment and educational program that increases opportunities for high school students to connect with businesses or to apply to colleges to pursue STEM-related careers and strengthen the future workforce.

Richmondville Broadband Initiative by MIDTEL would provide voice, cable TV-video, and broadband services to the residents and businesses in an area without existing broadband providers.

Village of Fonda Canalside Park proposes to expand multimodal access to the NYS Barge Canal and Mohawk River with new facilities for pedestrians, boaters, and tourists along the Canal.

The Mohawk Valley Gateway Overlook is proposed as the eastern anchor of the Mohawk Valley’s waterfront agenda, with the construction of a pedestrian bridge and interpretive trail that connects neighborhoods and canalside parkland to downtown Amsterdam.

The progress report and full list of endorsed priority projects can be found at http://regionalcouncils.ny.gov/content/mohawk-valley.

To continue building on the success of the last three rounds, up to $750 million in State resources is available in 2014. Funding for the fourth round includes $220 million in competitive funds from Empire State Development ($150 million in capital and $70 million in tax credits) to implement regional strategic plans and continue to advance priority job-creating projects, and up to $530 million from State agency programs through the CFA to support regionally-significant economic development projects.

The competition will be split into two parts: the five regions identified as Top Performers in 2013 will compete for two awards of $25 million each; and the five regions not identified as Top Performers in 2013 will compete for three awards of $25 million each. The balance of the $25 million in capital funds will be divided among the remaining five regions. Each region will also be eligible for up to $10 million in Excelsior Tax Credits to help attract business and create jobs in the region.

The competition this year will focus on:

  • Implementation of regional strategic economic development plans;
  • Performance in encouraging economic growth through job creation and investment; and
  • Identification of global marketing and export strategies.

Funding awards for the fourth round of the CFA process are expected to be announced this Fall.

The MVREDC, which is composed of Fulton, Herkimer, Montgomery, Oneida, Otsego and Schoharie counties, is one of 10 regional councils across New York state that serve as a single point of contact for economic activity in the regions. The MVREDC was named a “Top Performer” in 2013 and after three rounds of the REDC initiative more than 200 projects across the region have been awarded a total of $201 million in state support through the Regional Council and Consolidated Funding Application (CFA) process in the statewide competition.

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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