Issues: Economic Development


Receives Nod for Fourth Consecutive Year for Support of Agriculture Industry 

In recognition of her strong support for our state’s agriculture industry, State Senator Patty Ritchie was named to the New York Farm Bureau’s “Circle of Friends” for the fourth consecutive year. 

“As New York’s leading industry, agriculture is vitally important to the economic success of our state.  Not only that, but in many families, farming is a tradition, passed down from generation to generation,” said Senator Ritchie, who chairs the Senate Agriculture Committee.

“As someone who grew up on a farm and the representative of a region that is largely rural, I am thrilled to once again receive this special recognition.  As the 2015 Legislative Session approaches, I am looking forward to continuing to work closely with the Farm Bureau in an effort to further expand the industry and provide a boost to our hardworking farm families.”

As Chair of the Senate Agriculture Committee Senator Ritchie has led the charge to repeal costly mandates affecting farmers, restore budget cuts to programs utilized by those in the industry, launch new initiatives to protect the future of agriculture and cut red tape and to help ensure farming remains a viable profession in New York state. 

December 8, 2014

The Apartments at 300 Alexander

It was an exciting day yesterday in downtown Rochester for the grand opening of 300 Alexander Street. This incredible project, developed by Mark IV Enterprises, has transformed a 1850s building into modern, state of the art apartments. Abandoned for too long, this building will now provide housing in the heart of East and Alexander. Once again, congratulations to the DiMarzo's and everyone at Mark IV Enterprises!

Click here to see more pictures of 300 Alexander!

December 4, 2014

Bill Promoting Broadband Expansion Signed into Law

Senator Young sponsored bill to speed up access to federal funds for broadband expansion

ALBANY – A bill recently signed into law will open more opportunities for broadband expansion in rural areas, a necessity for greater economic expansion, healthcare innovation, and educational investment.

Senator Catharine Young (R, I, C—Olean), Chair of the Legislative Commission on Rural Resources, sponsored the bill. It improves the process that certain broadband providers, called Incumbent Local Exchange Carriers (ILECs), go through to access federal loans designated for broadband expansion.

November 26, 2014


$225,000 To Help Waterfront, Rt. 37 Corridor Growth

State Senator Patty Ritchie has announced $225,000 in capital funding for the City of Ogdensburg waterfront projects including repairs to the Maple City Trail at The Crescent and the Greenbelt boat launch.

Aid will also be made available to support enhancements in the Marina District and a new loop that improves water service and fire protection at the International Order of Odd Fellows Hall on Linden Street and the City’s Southside.

“Ogdensburg’s Maple City Trail and Crescent Park provide a relaxing place for families to enjoy one of the most beautiful places in Northern New York. These funds will help the city repair some of the damages caused by last spring’s Oswegatchie River flooding,” Senator Ritchie said. “Repairing the boat launch and the trail will help bring more boaters and visitors to Ogdensburg’s waterfront as part of the City’s long term economic development  plan to bring new jobs and businesses to its shoreline.”

November 25, 2014

Statement From State Senator Jose Peralta, Lead Sponsor Of The NYS DREAM Act, On President Obama's Executive Order

"The good news is that millions of upstanding, hardworking undocumented immigrants will now be able to continue contributing to our economy without having to live and work in fear of deportation.

"The bad news is that millions of other upstanding, hardworking undocumented immigrants will remain in the shadows of our economy and society.

"President Obama is to be applauded for taking a strong first step toward long-overdue reform of our broken immigration system.  Like the president, we in New York should not wait on Congress to make additional necessary repairs.

"The DREAM Act is sensible, compassionate public policy.  It is the law in Texas, a red state, California, a blue state, and New Mexico, a purple state.  Here, the New York DREAM Act is supported by editorial boards throughout the state, including those at newspapers as different as the New York Post, The New York Times and the Daily News.

"Let’s follow the bipartisan example of the five states that have already passed a DREAM Act.  Let's collaborate in New York on making an investment in our young people, our economy and our state’s future that will pay for itself several times over."


November 21, 2014


Senator Jack M. Martins (R-7th Senate District, fourth left) recently helped welcome Bethpage Federal Credit Union to its new location in Albertson. Senator Martins joined with representatives from Bethpage Federal Credit Union, along with fellow local officials Assemblyman Ed Ra, North Hempstead Town Clerk Wayne Wink, and North Hempstead Town Councilman Peter Zuckerman, in cutting the ribbon on the new branch.

November 20, 2014

Senator Young Presented with Award from New York Association of Conservation Districts

ALBANY - Senator Catharine Young (R, I, C–Olean), Chair of the Legislative Commission on Rural Resources, was deeply honored to accept this year’s “Appreciation Award” from the New York Association of Conservation Districts (NYACD).

NYACD represents Soil and Water Conservation Districts located in counties throughout New York State. NYACD represents and supports individual districts as they work to conserve soil, water, and other natural resources.

Senator Young was recently recognized with the honor during an award ceremony at NYACD’s annual conference in Utica, New York.

November 7, 2014

Statement From State Senator Jose Peralta On NYC Human Rights Commission

"I applaud the mayor's decision to bring in new leadership at the Human Rights Commission.  Instead of tackling the thousands of citizen-initiated complaints it receives annually, for the past several years HRC was disproportionately focusing its limited resources on fining businesses for using unintentionally gendered language in job recruiting advertisements," (i.e. posting an ad for a ‘waitress’ or ‘hostess’).

“Of the 53 discrimination settlements reported by the Commission in 2014, 18, or more than a third of all settlements, are for this sort of case.  Of those 18, only two appear to have been tested to show actual discriminatory intent. There is a similar pattern in 2012 and 2013, where employment ads allegedly showing gender discrimination made up 40% and 30% of total settlements respectively and only a few were tested to prove actual discriminatory intent.

"Many of the cases don’t come out of actual complaints, but rather from college students getting paid by HRC to troll on-line classifieds. 

"It is extremely troubling that this kind of questionable case comprises a third or more of the Commission’s enforcement output when so many complaints of actual discrimination go unanswered.

“New Yorkers expect and deserve a Human Rights Commission that helps bring justice to those who have been wronged, not one focused on generating revenue through petty fines.”


November 7, 2014

MTA & Kawasaki MWBE Supplier Outreach Event

(Yonkers - October 30th) Democratic Conference Leader, State Senator Andrea Stewart-Cousins welcomed suppliers to a Minority and Women-Owned Businesses event for Kawasaki Rail Car Inc in Yonkers. Kawasaki is a major employer in her district, and is manufacturing rail and subway cars for the MTA's Metro-North and Long Island Railroad. The Senator explained why it is so important to increase the level of MWBE participation in competitive state contracts, like this one. The state has now raised the bar for MWBE participation from 20% to 30%, and she encouraged contractors to learn about the opportunities that are being made available.

October 30, 2014

At the Orange County Chamber of Commerce's Annual Meeting and Awards Event - October 24, 2014

Senator Bonacic attended the Orange County Chamber of Commerce's Annual Meeting and Awards event at Anthony's Pier 9 on Thursday, October 24, 2014.  "The Orange County Chamber does an outstanding job of promoting big and small businesses, as well as providing networking opportunities and educational seminars, and I was pleased to honor the many businesses that were recognized this year," said the Senator.  (With Carol Davino, and Chamber President, Lynn Cione)

October 24, 2014

The inaugural Finger Lakes Beer Festival ~ Saturday, October 25, 2014 ~ Find out more

Five hours.  

At least 30 craft brews from at least 15 craft breweries, including many Finger Lakes breweries. 

It's the inaugural Finger Lakes Beer Festival and it's on tap this Saturday, October 25, 2014 at Watkins Glen International (WGI).

The fun starts at Noon.

Read more from WGI here.

October 23, 2014


Well-known international hotel chain invests in Bronx County, expected to provide hundreds of good jobs for Bronxites in the process

BRONX, NY  - State Senator Jeff Klein (D-Bronx/Westchester), joined by Bronx Chamber of Commerce members and Residence Inn by Marriott hotel representatives hosted the first job fair for the new Residence Inn by Marriott Bronx at Metro Center Atrium, expected to open in early 2015. The new hotel will be located at the Hutchinson Metro Center Atrium, 1776 Eastchester Road, Bronx, NY 10461.  The job fair was held in conjunction with Bronx H.I.R.E. - an innovative and targeted jobs program developed by the Office of Senator Klein and the Bronx Chamber of Commerce.

October 22, 2014

Welcome to College Town!

The University of Rochester celebrated a historic day today with the opening of College Town on Mount Hope Avenue. This mixed use development will not only benefit UR students and faculty, it will be a retail and dining destination for people from all over our region. College Town provides that small town college feeling in the City of Rochester and will be a major economic engine for our community.

Click here to see more pictures from the College Town celebration.

October 17, 2014

Grants For Young Farmers Now Available

ONEONTA, 10/16/14 -- State Senator James L. Seward (R/C/I – Oneonta) today announced grant applications are now available for two new programs to assist our next generation of farmers.  The programs are part of the “Young Farmers NY” initiative, a comprehensive plan, introduced by Seward and his senate colleagues earlier this year and enacted as part of the 2014-15 state budget. 

October 16, 2014


Request Comes As Governor Proposes Expansion of “Taste NY” Initiative 

As Governor Cuomo works to expand “Taste NY”—a program designed to highlight locally grown and produced food and products—Senator Ritchie is urging the placement of a Taste NY retail store at the now-closed Hastings rest area on I-81.

The request comes after the Governor this week proposed an expansion of Taste NY, setting goals to add Taste NY retail stores in strategic locations and triple gross sales of participating vendors in the coming year.  In her letter to Governor Cuomo, Senator Ritchie suggests reopening the rest area between exits 32 and 31, which has sat vacant since 2010 and adding a Taste NY retail location in an effort to welcome visitors and highlight local products. 

“Heavily traveled by local residents as well as a significant number of Canadian shoppers going to and from Syracuse, I-81 would be a great location for featuring items grown and produced locally including wine, craft beer, maple syrup, fresh produce such as apples and onions, dairy products and so much more,” said Senator Ritchie in her letter. 

October 16, 2014

Event offers new look at Kaufman Studios

Senator Gianaris was on hand as Kaufman Astoria Studios provided New Yorkers with a chance to experience the film industry firsthand at the "New York on Location" event. Read all about it in the Times Ledger

October 10, 2014


Includes Initiatives to Encourage Young People to Pursue Agriculture Careers 

State Senator Patty Ritchie has announced components of her “Young Farmers NY” program—a plan aimed at addressing issues related to the advancing average age of New York farmers and preserving the future of family farming—are being made available today.

Parts of the program launched today include more than $600,000 in grants as well as a loan forgiveness program, both aimed at helping young farmers overcome obstacles and giving them a greater opportunity for a successful career in agriculture.

“It’s hard to imagine a world without farmers,” said Senate Agriculture Chair State Senator Patty Ritchie.  “But it’s something that could become a reality if we don’t take proactive steps towards addressing the issue of our state’s aging farmer population.”

“The components of my Young Farmers NY program rolled out today will give those who are just starting out a real incentive for joining the ranks of our state’s hardworking farmers and more importantly, will serve to protect our state’s biggest industry for many years to come.”

October 10, 2014

Senator Bonacic Congratulates Orange County Rising Stars at Junior League/Leadership Orange 2014 Awards Dinner

Senator Bonacic stopped by the Rising Star Award Dinner hosted by the Junior League of Orange County and Leadership Orange, and congratulated all the honorees. Here he is with Brian Powers from Judelson, Giorgano & Siegel, and Lisa Kelly of Focus Media.  

October 9, 2014


Construction Plans Detailed in New Sign Adjacent to Pier 

State Senator Patty Ritchie has announced the New York State Canal Corporation has laid out its plans for the reconstruction of Brewerton Pier; a plan that once completed, will help to increase tourism, grow jobs and create new recreational opportunities in the central New York area. 

Reconstruction of the pier—which was deemed unsafe for use by the state and closed following its collapse into the Oneida River in 2009—has been in the planning stage for several years.  Now, as a result of the advocacy of Senator Ritchie and other local leaders, plans are being put into motion for its rebuilding.  This week, at the request of Senator Ritchie, a sign detailing the reconstruction timeline was installed in the Town of Hastings. 

“In the years since the Brewerton Pier has been closed, the central New York region has missed out on recreational opportunities and the tourism dollars that come along with them,” said Senator Ritchie. 

“Once the pier is made usable again, central New York will see the benefits of improved recreational opportunities, increased tourism and new jobs.  I would like to thank the Canal Corporation for turning its focus to the rebuilding of the pier, as well as the local leaders and community members who advocated for its reconstruction.”

October 9, 2014

Senator Griffo's Weekly Column #35: Help For Existing Businesses, Not Just New Ones

New York has the dubious distinction of ranking dead last among the 50 states in a survey of business tax climates. The governor’s initiative, START-UP NY, represented an out-of-the-box approach to lure jobs here.

However, we simply cannot earmark all of our tax breaks, credits and incentives for new businesses. The strength of an economy comes from existing business, and reducing their competitiveness to new companies can result in too many good jobs being lost.

October 9, 2014
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