(Albany, NY) – Yesterday, the New York State Senate, led by President and Majority Leader Malcolm A. Smith and Democratic Conference Leader John L. Sampson, passed legislation extending the Power for Jobs program which provides low cost power to businesses and non-profits across the state. If the program was not extended, New York faced the potential loss of over 250,000 jobs.
New York State generates low-cost hydropower at facilities such as Niagara Falls and the St. Lawrence River. Through the Power for Jobs program, the New York Power Authority offers electricity at below-market rates to businesses that create jobs in New York. The program was set to expire at the end of the month without Senate action.
“New York is in crisis, and during times of economic distress, creating and protecting jobs is our top priority,” said Senator Malcolm Smith. “Hundreds of businesses across the state rely on low-cost power to create good-paying jobs for New Yorkers. The Power for Jobs program is a lifeline for many manufacturers in communities across New York, and it was essential we pass an extension before Power for Jobs expires on June 30th.”
“Businesses in New York already pay the highest energy rates in the nation,” said Senator John Sampson. “The Power for Jobs program subsidizes electrical power for businesses that employ more than 250,000 New Yorkers. As we did this Tuesday, Senate Democrats will continue to put the interests of New York’s employers, workers, and taxpayers at the forefront of our agenda as we pass additional important legislation in the days ahead.”
Under the Senate legislation passed yesterday, the Power for Jobs program is extended through May 2010. In addition, the Power Authority will audit the energy use of businesses using low-cost power, at no cost to the businesses. The audits will promote energy conservation and help determine the best way to use low-cost power to create more jobs going forward.