North Country Regional Economic Development Council Delivers Progress Presentations
The North Country Regional Economic Development Council (NCREDC) today delivered a presentation to the Strategic Implementation Assessment Team (SIAT) on its progress, achievements, and endorsed priority projects for the second round of the Regional Council competition. The presentation was a part of Governor Andrew M. Cuomo's statewide Regional Economic Development Council Progress Tour, where the Governor, joined by a team of state agency leaders and independent business experts and academics, conducted a firsthand review of the progress being made on last year's strategic economic development plans and job-creating projects.
"Last year, the North Country Regional Council developed a strategy designed to help transform the future economy of the North Country by supporting and attracting business growth and job creation," said Regional Council Co-Chair and North Country Chamber of Commerce President Garry Douglas and Regional Council Co-Chair and Clarkson University President Tony Collins. "Thanks to the leadership of Governor Cuomo, Lieutenant Governor Duffy, and the work of our Council members, we have fully embraced this extraordinary opportunity to turn that plan into action and demonstrate that our region can work together to achieve economic growth. Last year, we had a great story to tell about what we were going to do, and this year, we have an even better story to tell about the great work that we are doing."
Following the Governor's tour of regionally-significant projects to review their impact on the local economy, the NCREDC provided a formal presentation to SIAT outlining the progress they have made in advancing last year's strategic plans and projects, as well as their endorsed projects for the coming year to SIAT at the West Side Ballroom in Plattsburgh.
Based upon published guidelines (available in the 2012 Guidebook), SIAT will review and assess each region's progress as it relates to their accomplishments in the following categories:
- Strategy updates;
- Implementing the strategic plan;
- Leveraging resources;
- Advancing priority projects;
- Measuring performance; and
- Engaging the public and involving stakeholders.
The Regional Council competition awards will be made based on the progress the Councils have made implementing their strategies and the evolution of their strategic plans, including any revisions or updates.
Prior to the statewide progress tour, each Council submitted to the State on September 14, 2012, its one-year progress report, which provides detail on the Council's achievements in implementing its five year strategic plan. The report includes a description of how the Council established a framework to advance the plan, revisions to some of its strategies, an implementation agenda and a tracking of the advancement of priority job-creating projects awarded in 2011. Additionally, the NCREDC provided the State with its list of the 21 priority projects the Council has endorsed for the second round of the Regional Council competition.
The Council's progress report and full list of endorsed priority projects for 2012 can be found at www.northcountryopenforbusiness.com or http://regionalcouncils.ny.gov/content/north-country.
In the first round of the Regional Council initiative, the North Country was awarded $103.2 million in state support through the Regional Economic Development Council initiative and CFA process for 70 projects across the region. Throughout its first year of implementation activity, the Council has reported substantial progress in advancing the creation of a biotech cluster at new downtown locations in the Village of Saranac Lake, and successful collaborations among education and workforce development leaders such as the creation of the new North Country Higher Education and Research and Development Consortium and the North Country STEM Hub at Clarkson.
Once completed, the priority projects endorsed by the North Country REDC and awarded funding through the 2011 CFA will significantly boost the local economy by creating and retaining over 2,000 permanent, non-construction jobs and leveraging over $170 million in additional private sector investment.
In 2012, the NCREDC endorsed 21 priority projects requesting over $112 million in State capital investment that have the potential to create 347 construction jobs, 371 permanent jobs, retain 1,421 existing jobs, leverage $200 million in private and other investment and move the region decisively closer to meeting dozens of specific strategy goals.
Last year, Governor Cuomo created Regional Councils and the Consolidated Funding Application (CFA) to transform New York's operating model for economic development from a top-down approach to a community-based model which empowers individual regions to develop and advance regionally-targeted strategic plans and job-creating projects. In support of this initiative, $785 million was awarded for economic and community development projects consistent with each region's strategic plans. This year, the primary focus of the Regional Council initiative was to successfully implement and operationalize their strategic plans to make each region's vision for economic growth a reality.
To build on the success of the first round, a second round of up to $762 million in state resources was launched in 2012. Funding for the second round includes $220 million ($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 $542 million from state agency programs through the CFA to support regionally-significant economic development projects.
The Regional Council competition will result in five best implementation awards, where regions will be awarded enhanced funding for priority projects based on the progress they have made in implementing last year's strategic plans. While project funding will be awarded in all 10 regions through the second round of the CFA, the competition places emphasis on Regional Council performance and action to implement strategies.
The competition phase will be split in two parts:
First, the four regions with the 2011 Best Plans will compete for two awards of up to $25 million each in capital funds.
Second, the remaining six regions will compete for three awards of up to $25 million each in capital funds.
The balance of the $25 million in capital funds will be divided among the remaining regions. Each region will also be eligible for up to $10 million in Excelsior Tax Credits to help attract and grow business in the region.
Funding awards for the second round of the CFA process will be announced later this year.
To view the NCREDC presentation and learn more about their economic development plans, visit www.northcountryopenforbusiness.com or http://regionalcouncils.ny.gov/content/north-country.