Governor Eliot Spitzer announced today that the Office for Small Cities and Empire State Development (ESD) are providing more than $1.1 million in economic development aid to help businesses in Schenectady, St. Lawrence and Wayne Counties create and retain nearly 160 jobs. The funding will help local businesses provide health care and other benefits, upgrade facilities and equipment, and invest in workforce training.
The state grants have been awarded to Newton Falls Fine Paper, LLC in Clifton, CEL Packing, LLC in Wolcott, and Duanesburg Area Community Center, Inc. in Duanesburg.
The Office for Small Cities, a subsidiary of the New York Housing Trust Fund Corporation, will also leverage $26 million in additional funding from a variety of public and private sources to help fund these projects.
"When working to revitalize the upstate economy, reviving struggling small cities across New York must be one of our top priorities," said Governor Spitzer. "Today’s announcement shows that we are making progress toward this goal. These grants hold the promise of new, good-paying jobs, which means more New Yorkers will have a secure economic future."
Deborah VanAmerongen, Chair of the Housing Trust Fund Corporation said: "We need to do all we can to revitalize our Upstate economies and this funding is pivotal in that effort. Governor Spitzer has shown a real commitment to bringing local communities out of economic doldrums and making it possible for families to get ahead."
97 New Jobs at Newton Falls Fine Paper
Newton Falls Fine Paper, LLC will receive $1 million from ESD and $760,000 from the Office of Small Cities to assist in a $21 million expansion project in the hamlet of Newton Falls. The company will use the funds to purchase and restore the abandoned Appleton Papers paper mill, which at one time employed more than 500 people. Newton Falls Fine Paper will create 97 jobs over three years and provide full benefits, including company-paid health insurance.
Senator Joseph A. Griffo said: "New York State is making an important investment in the economy of St. Lawrence County. Many people in the North Country remember the days when the Appleton Papers Mill was a thriving part of the local infrastructure. The Newton Falls Paper Company is making a commitment to bring this industry back and I remain committed to making sure that the state continues to be an active participant in that process."
Assemblywoman Dede Scozzafava said: "I am very pleased at the steps taken to breathe new life into the economy of Newton Falls. I want to thank the Governor and the Empire State Development Corporation for assisting Newton Falls Fine Paper on their move into the abandoned Appleton Papers paper mill. The direct 97 new jobs and ancillary growth of local small businesses are certain to be a welcomed blessing to the community."
CEL Packing Creates 27 New Jobs with Regular Pay Increases
CEL Packing, LLC in the Town of Wolcott will expand its operations with a $200,000 grant from the Office of Small Cities. Over three years, the company will add 27 new jobs. CEL Packing specializes in processing and packaging fruit and vegetable products for both human and animal consumption. The state funds will assist the company in purchasing equipment and machinery to increase production efficiency and meet sales demands.
Senator Michael Nozzolio said: "Strategic investments such as this grant to CEL Packing are critically important to help companies expand their operations and update infrastructure. This important new funding will create nearly 30 new jobs and is a positive step for our local economy."
Assemblyman Robert Oakes said: "CEL Packing’s expansion is important news for Wolcott, Wayne County and our entire region. CEL Packing’s focus on expanding markets for locally raised fruits and vegetables, as well as creating 27 new jobs will help strengthen our local economy and highlights the importance of the agricultural industry for our future growth."
35 Jobs at Duanesburg Area Community Center and a New Facility for Families
Duanesburg Area Community Center, Inc. (DACC) will receive $315,000 grant from the Office of Small Cities to purchase furniture, fixtures, and equipment for a new 25,000 square foot facility. The project will create 35 new jobs and retain 11 jobs. The new facility will house a gymnasium, aquatics and fitness centers, child care centers, and community meeting space.
SenatorHugh Farley said: "This is a long-awaited community center which will bring important services to children and families in the rural Duanesburg area. The DACC has enjoyed tremendous local support, I have been pleased to assist with over $350,000 in Senate grants, and today's announcement of funding from the Office of Small Cities is really wonderful news. I commend Governor Spitzer for this recognition of the needs of smaller upstate communities."
Assemblyman George Amedore: "This economic development project is a tremendous boost for our community and I applaud the Governor for allocating funds for the Duanesburg Area Community Center. It will provide the resources necessary to not only create jobs, but build a facility that will surely be an invaluable asset to the community."
The Office for Small Cities administers the Federal Community Development Block Grant Program for the State of New York and provides funding to cities, towns, and villages with populations less than 50,000 and counties with populations less than 200,000. The funds are intended to help revitalize communities, expand affordable housing and economic opportunities and improve community services and facilities.