Long Island’s New York State Senate Delegation, Northrop Grumman Corporation and the Long Island Forum for Technology ("LIFT") today announced a new, $190 million New York State Center for Innovation and Excellence in Homeland Security in Bethpage. Construction of the 65,000 sq. ft. facility will be funded through a $21.1 million grant secured by Long Island’s State Senate Delegation and the Center is expected to create 9,800 jobs and establish Long Island as the national leader in homeland security research.
At today’s announcement, Senators Dean G. Skelos, Kemp Hannon, Carl Marcellino, Michael A.L. Balboni, Charles J. Fuschillo, Jr., Owen Johnson, Kenneth LaValle, Caesar Trunzo and John J. Flanagan were joined by Duke Dufresne, Sector Vice President of Northrop Grumman Integrated Systems, and Kenneth Morrelly, President of LIFT.
The new Center for Innovation and Excellence in Homeland Security will be the first such facility in the country and enable New York companies and research institutions to collaboratively develop, test, evaluate and deploy new homeland security technologies and systems, such as those needed to detect, prevent and respond to terrorist attacks or natural disasters. Users of homeland security products and systems, most notably the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, repeatedly cite the need for field-ready solutions for various public protection efforts.
Although the Center will by located in Bethpage, it will allow companies to access research from the state’s other Centers of Excellence and Centers for Advanced Technology to solve homeland security problems and commercialize new products. Nationally, the homeland security market is projected to exceed $100 billion.
Northrop Grumman will make cash and in-kind investments totaling $15 million over the next ten years and serve as the Center’s anchor tenant. These will include hardware, software, equipment, staff, university research and prototype testing. The Center will contain research space, or "cells," for 20 other corporate tenants that will each make similar investments.
It is estimated that the Center will directly create or retain 290 research jobs and 2160 product development and manufacturing jobs. Jobs that will be indirectly created by the Center are estimated at 7,350, for a total of 9,800 jobs throughout the state over ten years.
The Center will be constructed on five acres of land, near the Northrop Grumman campus in Bethpage, that is currently being transferred from the U.S. Navy to Nassau County. The property now stands ready for commercial development.
Senator Dean G. Skelos (R, Rockville Centre) said, "This historic initiative will create an environment for innovation that will lead to new technologies and products designed to keep us safe. It is an investment in our future that will have an immediate and far-reaching impact on the region's economy. The Center will create not just thousands of jobs, but real career opportunities, and will position Long Island as a global leader in the homeland security field."
Senator Kemp Hannon (R, Garden City) said, "In this ever changing and unpredictable global environment, all residents of the state – and the country for that matter – stand to benefit from the creation of the New York State Center for Innovation and Excellence. This project offers a unique opportunity to facilitate economic growth and employment opportunities in the region, while providing a much needed forum to support emerging technologies that focus on addressing homeland security issues," continued Hannon. "I am proud that this facility will be centered in the 6th Senatorial District, in Bethpage."
Senator Carl L. Marcellino (R, Syosset) said, "This proposal is a win-win for Long Island. It will create long term careers right here and will make it much easier for companies with homeland security technologies to get their practical products in front of the right market. Transferring these field ready innovative technologies to the market place will ultimately lead to a safer and economically stronger State and a safer America."
Senator Michael Balboni (R, East Williston), Chairman of the Senate Standing Committee on Homeland Security, said, "The homeland security marketplace has grown dramatically since September 11, 2001 and our security needs have never been greater in this country or in this state. So the timing on this project is perfect and will vault Long Island to the head of the class in homeland security innovation."
Senator Charles J. Fuschillo, Jr. (R, Merrick) said, "The benefits of this new project are twofold. It will provide extraordinary opportunities to create hundreds of millions of dollars in new economic revenues and thousands of new jobs. In addition, it will help to develop new homeland security technology that will help protect our communities. This is a tremendous victory for the people of Long Island."
Senator John J. Flanagan (R, Northport) said, "Long Island’s history is replete with the type of career opportunities that this Center will create and I am proud that we are returning these opportunities Long Island workers. Just as Northrop Grumman was able to capitalize on the federal defense program in the last century, today’s announcement will further the region’s stature in homeland security technology and increase our stature as a leader in the industry. The legacy of our past is a creation of careers for families and today is a continuation of that successful legacy."
Nassau County Executive Thomas Suozzi said, "Any initiative that has the potential to bring jobs and increased economic activity to the county, especially high tech jobs, is welcome. We will do everything we can at the county level to help move this proposal forward. This would be a good and proper use of land at the Bethpage site. I commend the Long Island Senate delegation for this innovative and important proposal."
Duke Dufresne, Sector Vice President of Northrop Grumman Integrated Systems, said, "There are tremendous technological capabilities spread across New York State. The Center will be a homeland security solution incubator that will bring together the work of New York’s industry, universities and other research institutions in a real-time working environment. This industry-led center of excellence will apply new and emerging technologies to solve real-world homeland security problems. I want to thank Senator Dean Skelos and the Long Island Senate Delegation for their advocacy on behalf of Long Island in making this project a reality."
Ken Morrelly, President of LIFT, said, "By leveraging New York State's investments in university research with an industry led initiative, the Center has the very real potential to assist in making the region, state and country safer from the threat of a terrorist event. This visionary yet practicable investment in the region is the kind of support that only responsible and responsive government can make. We thank the Long Island Senatorial Delegation, led by State Senator Dean Skelos, for providing leadership and support in this important area."
The Center will be industry led via a not-for-profit 501(c)(3) comprised of key industry investors and New York State. LIFT, Long Island’s Regional Technology Development Center, will serve as the Center’s operator. A Board of Directors will govern the Center, and will include the lead industry partner, the Center’s operator, and representatives from industry, the user community, the research community and state government.